Hi, I'm back for my second blog. Just finished playing a Civ 6 game as the Roman Empire, and that gave me a blog idea. Roman coins. Here we go.
You all know that the Roman Empire was one of the most influential in history. The Coliseum, the planet names, and the great people, including Julius Caesar. Another thing the Romans heavily influenced was coins. They had the denarii, the quinarii, the antoninianus, the sestertii, and the aurei. The way they get their value is by having a rare emperor, like Julius Caesar and Augustus.
Roman coins were made in the late 4th century BCE in Italy and continued to be made all around the empire until about 8 centuries later. They were also a way to get news around, like they showed monuments, and who was the current emperor. Coins then were like the news today. The first coins were bronze and worth 2 Greek drachmas, but then, they had a shortage of bronze, so they made a lot of these gold coins called aurei. During the Punic Wars, the metal in coins was reduced. In the 200s BC, the denarius was made, as well as the quinarii, and other bronze and gold coins.
As Rome expanded, silver became the new metal for coins, as they were getting a lot of it for pillaging Carthaginian cities during war. After Rome got all of Italy, it was no longer necessary to mark coins as Roman, because there really no mix up in the united Italy. In the first century BC, Roman coins were used widely across the Mediterranean Sea. All Roman coins were based off the bronze as, which was devalued so it was then worth 1/16 of a denarius.
When emperors died, multiple types of coins were produced. After Julius Caesar's death, Brutus, one of the assassins, made a coin with his image on it with two daggers on the back. This was stopped when Octavian became the Caesar of the Roman empire. When emperors saw that Rome fell into debt, it was their job to fix it. Emperor Nero reduced the amount of gold and silver in the coins, Carcalla made the coins worth more, and a lot of emperors mixed other metals in until coins were only 2% silver. Another problem was that there were fake coins made out of useless materials, and another one was the barbarian invasions had the empire pay the army more.
The reason Roman coins are so important today is because they usually tell archaeologists who find them what is near them, like ruins of an old monument, or a buried emperor. Roman coins are very important in learning about the Romans because they are primary historical documents that almost never die out.
I know you guys have been looking for bibliographies, so here it is. Some of this information was found from pics, the Rome civ 6 in game encyclopedia, and my personal roman coins.
Online. Internet. Available. https://www.apmex.com/category/56000/ancient-medieval-coins Accessed 8 Jun. 2020
Online. Internet. Available. https://www.ancient.eu/Roman_Coinage/
Accessed 8 Jun. 2020