I had the opportunity to get 41 rolls of pennies earlier this week. I have been having fun seeing what I could find. I did not sort for the 1982 alloy differences or any date with large or small digits.
Numismatics is a hobby, and of course it is fun, but it is also a science with many frontiers to explore. The studies that we do today help guide other coin collectors for many years down the road. In the world of ancient coins there are portraits of rulers for whom we have no name. There are kings who are known ONLY from their coins. Sometimes a ruler comes into power, but holds court only for a short time before being defeated and erased from memory. Just a blip on the radar of a millennium. Take the Unknown King of ancient Parthia. I mean, who was THAT guy? We really do not know....yet. The discovery WILL come one day, and quite possibly one of you reading this will be the person to reveal it to the world. He is pictured above in this blog. Another example is the Nameless King, a man historians now call Vima Takto of the Kushan Empire. Vima Takto. But for so long he was totally nameless, the clues from his coins too scant to make an identification. It is fascinating how his name came to be known, worth looking into I say. There are so many kings throughout the centuries and so many mysteries. As a numismatist one must always be questioning. The Indeterminate Kings, or "Princes", of Elymais. Prince A, Prince B and Prince C. Who were they and what did they do? All we have are their coins. There are discoveries still waiting to be found in the ground today that will help shape how we view history tomorrow. Discoveries in collections that will change the way historians view the past. A coin collector might be the one to make the discovery, to find out the name, to reveal to others the mysteries of ancient times. We are historians as well as coin collectors, we are indeed scientists, and we can work within our hobby to make a difference in the world. We have to actually. We have to always study our coins, question their place in history, rearrange what we once thought was true to make room for what is true tomorrow. Do you have any mystery coins? Coins from a ruler who is unknown even to the most experienced numismatist? Study history, study your coins. And think outside the box. Your unique and individual insight might provide the world with the next great discovery. Your opinion counts. There is room to learn, there are discoveries waiting to be made, and there are old mysteries still waiting to be found out. The most everyday collector of ancient coins can be an important collector if he or she wants to be. Make a discovery, ask a question, teach the world. I thank you for being so inquisitive, and for making history come alive each and every day with your collections and your studies. Really, thank you.