Roman Republic, Denarius


Roman Republic, Denarius (obverse) Roman Republic, Denarius (reverse)

This Roman denarius from the year 67 BC shows Cybele, the Magna Mater of Phyrgia. Cybele's cult was introduced in Rome in the year 204 BC, during the Second Punic War. Rome fought for its survival at that time. In their despair the Romans consulted the Sibylline Books, which revealed that they would be able to drive their enemy out of Italy if the Magna Mater was brought to Rome.

Responsible for the cult of Cybele were the Curule Aediles. The reverse of the denarius depicts a curule chair as a symbol of the office. The Curule Aediles were also in charge of the purchase of corn for disposal at a low price, or for free distribution among the Roman poor.


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