Roman Republic, Denarius


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

The this denarius was issued in 51 BC by Servius Sulpicius (SER SVLP). It depicts the head of the Greek god Apollo.

The maritime trophy on the reverse alludes to a naval victory. On the prow of a ship stands a mast with an anchor and a rudder hanging from its crossbar. On top sits an aplustrium, the fan-shaped decoration from the stern of Roman ship. The figure on the left of the trophy is a prisoner.

Apollo on the obverse refers to the island of Delos, where he was born, as Greek legend had it. In the year 69 BC Apollo's sanctuary there was destroyed by a pirate attack. Some years later the Roman commander Gnaeus Pompeius Magnus defeated the pirates and was honored with a memorial on Delos.

Perhaps it was this victory that the issuer of the denarius wanted to celebrate.


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