Roman Republic, Denarius


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

An important economic base of the late Roman Republic was the free distribution of grain to the inhabitants of Rome. Only a small share of the cereals imported to Rome was sold to bakers; most of it was allocated to citizens of all social classes.

The obverse of this denarius from the year 63 BC depicts Ceres, the goddess of grain crops, with a grain kernel and an ear of barley. The design stands for the 'cura annonae,' the guardianship over the grain supplies of the city of Rome. The curule chair on the reverse symbolizes the office of the curule aedile who was in charge of the cura annonae.

The issuer of this coin, Lucius Furius Brocchus, son of Gnaeus (L. FVRI CN. F), did not hold this office himself, else the inscription would have pointed that out. The curule aedile supposedly was his father Gnaeus, and the young moneyer honored him on this coin.


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