M. Furius L.f. Philus. Rome, 119 BC

M. Furius L.f. Philus. Rome, 119 BC


AR Denarius, 3.96g (18mm, 12h). Laureate head of Janus; around, M FOVRI L F, Rv. Roma standing l., holding sceptre and crowning trophy; behind, ROMA; above, star; on the l. field, trophy surmounted by a helmet in the form of a boar's head and flanked by carnyx and shield on each side; in ex. PHILI.

Pedigree: Ex ACR Auctions 12, 29 October 2014, lot 438

References: Crawford 281/1; Furia 18; Sydenham 529

Grade: Cabinet tone, well centered specimen and fine style, EF/Good EF  (rr1004)

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While the obverse is impressive, the imagery on the reverse of this coin is where the story lies. Crawford suggests, and rightly so, that the reverse of this coin symbolises the defeat of the Gallic tribes, Allobroges and Arverni in the preceding year, 120 BC. Athena is shown as the divine goddess with a star above her head and more telling are the Celtic instruments to the left and right of the trophy. The carnyx was a wind instrument used by the tribes to incite battle.