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Juno Moneta's Blog

17 May 2015

Monumental Coins - (Book Review)

Library | Juno Moneta

Collecting ancient coins depicting ancient architectural buildings, temples, and monuments is a popular specialist area of ancient coin study. This popular book on the subject reviews many of the most famous structures to appear on ancient coins, including the Temple of Jerusalem. The book is full of maps, architectural drawings, and line drawings of coins that allow the reader to see the smallest details. Many temple lay-outs are included so that the scale of the buildings, often just seen from the entrance, can be appreciated. This fine hardback volume is a medium-large format of 242 pages and was published by Krause in 1999. The book was written by Marvin Tameanko. Prices for the book are very low ($12.30 on Amazon) considering the quality and interesting reading contained in this book.

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10 May 2015

Astronomical Symbols on Ancient and Medieval Coins (Book Review)

Library | Juno Moneta

You see them quite often on coins if you collect these types. However, the references are clueless as to what star and moon devices actually mean, with rare exception. It turns out that understanding these symbols can actually help date the coins more precisely. The book is full of illustrations and charts explaining astronomical events and the associated coins. The most well known examples are the stars on the coins of Roman Republic featuring Julius Caesar. The technique, despite the fact that there were no coins of that time celebrating the event, has been used to help establish the date of the birth of Jesus of Nazareth to 4 B.C.E.

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09 May 2015

Litzmannstadt...A Chapter in German Monetary History (Book Review)

Library | Juno Moneta

In your never ending quest to seek out and learn about REALLY interesting world coins you may happen upon the tragic series of coins from the Lotz Ghetto of Litzmannstadt. Following the invasion of Poland (1939) by the forces of the 3rd Reich of Germany, the Nazis set up an illusion of a "self administered" Jewish enclave in an occupied Polish town. They did this by walling in a section of town in Litzmannstadt, which already had a robust Jewish population. They forced the poor inhabitants into forced labor while they slowly starved the elderly and the leaders. Those were the good times, because beginning in 1942 they started moving some of the Jews to the extermination camps.

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03 May 2015

Early Japanese Coins - by D. Hartill; Book Review

Library | Juno Moneta

Early Japanese Coins is the latest catalog of pre-Meiji copper, gold and silver coins. As well as official issues, the often decorative provincial issues are covered. A selection of the intriguing Japanese amulets known as E-sen is also included. It replaces Munro and other western works. It is designed to be used both by advanced collectors who have some knowledge of characters, and beginners who will find the layout easy to follow and will quickly gain a knowledge of this coinage. It draws on historical, as well as the latest western and Japanese numismatic sources, and describes the circumstances under which many of the coins were issued and used. Guides to the Japanese language are given, and maps and lists of era names and rulers add to the background information. There is a description of how the coins were made, illustrated from a contemporary document. What I found particularly valuable was a guide to the varieties found in the Tempo Tsuho series of oval coins. These are readily available at reasonable prices with rare varieties for those who become specialists. A rarity guide, linked to an approximate value, is provided for each coin. The author has been studying and collecting Far Eastern coins for over fifty years, and has also written the prize winning Cast Chinese Coins, and the definitive Qing Cash, books that I also have and will review here. Even if you can't collect them the book will provide an excellent education on this important field.

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02 May 2015

Encyclopedia of Mexican Money - Volume I

Library | Juno Moneta

Whitman Encyclopedia of Mexican Money - Volume I is an overview and history of Mexican coinage and currency. The first volume in this four-volume encyclopedia is a richly illustrated introduction to Mexican numismatics, from pre-Columbian money to the colonial era, independence, revolutions, modern coinage reforms, commemorative programs, bullion medals, and paper money.

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