Roman Republic, Denarius


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

This Roman denarius from the year 42 BC depicts on the obverse Concordia, the goddess of harmony. Below her chin is a crescent, possibly a symbol of the hope for the dawn of a new age.

In the turmoil following the death of Gaius Julius Caesar (44 BC), various alliances were created; in 43 BC, the triumvirate of Octavian (the later Emperor Augustus), Marcus Antonius and Marcus Aemilius Lepidus was formed. The design on this coin celebrates the harmony between them.

The reverse depicts the shrine of Venus Cloacina with two statues of Venus on top. The shrine of Venus Cloacina was a small sanctuary on the Roman Forum that dated back to the founding of Rome and the rape of the Sabine women.

Pliny the Elder reported that when the Romans and the Sabines decided to make peace, they laid down their weapons at the location of the shrine and purified themselves with sprigs of myrtle. The shrine of Venus Cloacina may thus have had associations with civil peace.


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