Venus and the Sidus Iulium
Lot 225
Octavian, 44-27 BC. Denarius (Silver, 21 mm, 3.73 g, 3 h), uncertain mint in Italy (Rome?), autumn 32-summer 31. Bare head of Octavian to left. Rev. CAESAR - DIVI[•F] Venus Genetrix standing right, nude to below the hips, leaning with her left elbow on column to her left, holding crested helmet in her right hand and long transverse scepter in her left; to lower left, shield with star motif leaning against column. Babelon (Julia) 109. BMC 601. Cohen 63. CRI 396. RIC 250b. A lustrous, beautiful example with a very attractive reverse. The obverse struck somewhat off center and with a minor scratch at 4 o'clock, otherwise, virtually as struck.

As the mother of Aeneas, Venus was the mythical ancestress of the Julian family and hence venerated, in the form of Venus Genetrix, by both Julius Caesar and Octavian. The star on her shield is none other than the Sidus Iulium, a comet that appeared during the festivities held by Octavian in honor of Venus Genetrix on 20-23 July 44 BC, and was subsequently connected to Caesar's deification.
1500 CHF
Starting price:
1200 CHF
Hammer price:
6000 CHF
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Closing time: 27-May-23, 06:00:00 CEST
All winning bids are subject to a 20% buyer's fee.


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