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Dupondius Augustus - Nemausus, local cast


Augustus. Æ Dupondius. Nemausus (Nîmes), 9/8-3 BC Obv. IMP DIVI F Head of Augustus, wearing laurel wreath (missing head of Agrippa, wearing combined rostral crown and laurel wreath) Rev. COL NEM Crocodile right, chained to palm frond with wreath at top; two palm fronds at base. cf RIC 160 , Cohen 8 Type commemorating the victory of Actium; reverse may be the stylized representation of a ship (see http://perso.wanadoo.fr/as-de-nimes ). Crocodile and chain represent the defeated Egypt, with crowns and palm, a reference to the victory of Actium. Cast from an official dupondius, most probably issued officially to make up for shortage of small bronze currency in Gaul. Untouched dark green patina.

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Yes, patina is great, as on many of these Nemausus middle bronzes; this is due to the composition of the alloy. In this particular coin, percentage of lead must be greater, in order to lower the fusion point of the metal, for easier casting.
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Fascinating observation on the crocodile being hull of ship (can see the oars!), mast the palm frond etc. Fun at least! Alex
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