Tetricus I, Romano-Gallic Emperor, 271-274. 'Denarius' (Bronze, 20 mm, 3.26 g, 6 h), offstrike from Aureus dies, Cologne, autumn 272. IMP C TETRICVS PIVS AVG Laureate and cuirassed bust of Tetricus I to right. Rev. PAX AETERNA Pax standing front, head to left, holding olive-branch in her right hand and long scepter with her left. Cohen -. Cf. Elmer 813 (Aureus). RIC -. Schulte 38 (V19/R23). Sondermann 4.6 (this coin). Apparently the second and by far the best example known. A wonderful coin with a magnificent dark patina and a splendid portrait of outstanding style. Extremely fine.
From the collection of Yves Gunzenreiner, ex Tradart, 12 December 1991, 426 and Hauck & Aufhäuser 4, 7 October 1987, 463.
The comparative richness of offstrikes from aureus dies in the 'Gallic Empire' coinage and the fact that a number of them have been found in in tombs suggests that they were not mere test strikes but instead may have been used as 'Auswurfmünzen' for distribution among lower rank soldiers or civil attendants of imperial celebrations. To modern numismatists their importance lies in completing the evidence for the gold coinage of the era: where aurei have not survived, offstrikes can, and frequently do, fill important gaps. Unfortunately, they usually suffered from corrosion and wear and are rarely a joy to behold. The present example is a remarkable exception: not only does its excellent condition fully capture the outstanding artistry of the aureus dies, but the wonderful dark patina adds additional charme to it. It is certainly among the best offstrikes known from this era.