L. Hostilius Saserna, Rome, 48 BC

L. Hostilius Saserna, Rome, 48 BC


AR Denarius, 4.04g (19mm, 12h). Female head r., wearing oak wreath. Rev. L·HOSTILIVS SASERNA Victory advancing r., holding caduceus and palm branch

Pedigree: Ex Sotheby's, 28 October 1993, lot 1342

References: Babelon Hostilia 5. Sydenham 951. Sear Imperators 17. Crawford 448/1a

Grade: Some minor surface abrasions and hairline scratches. A few patches of encrustation at 11h and 12h on reverse with minor surface abrasions. Slightly off center. Nice toning. aEF (rr1068)

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Michael Crawford (citing T.P. Wiseman) notes in his book that it is not certain which of the three Saserna brothers that this coin was struck. All three were active in government at the same time. What is certain is that L. Hostilius Saserna denarii celebrate the Roman victory over Gaul. Likely the more notable type that comes from this moneyer is one with a long-haired male warrior, termed by many as ‘Vercingetorix’. To be sure, there was an actual Vercingetorix but it is not certain that the warrior on the coinage is the same man. There is also a female warrior on another version to compliment the male counterpart. This issue has an obverse head type that is similar to Caesar’s own issues. The reverse trophy mirrors the trophy that Caesar employed on his coinage celebrating the same victory.