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Mount Argaeus on coins

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post-3665-087549700 1288235474_thumb.jpg I am not a coin collector. Nevertheless, I enjoy the history I can learn from coins.

Part of the success and relative stability that Ancient Rome achieved over a vast and diverse empire could be attributed to the Empire's willingness to tolerate and even foster local traditions and beliefs (provided one showed proper deference and respect to the Empire and Emperor, of course). This is an interesting coin with the image of Mount Argaeus on the reverse that reflects that concept.

This is a coin of the Emperor Commodus made in Cappadocia (Central Turkey). On the reverse of the coin is an image of Mount Argaeus, which was held in special esteem and mythology by the local population. (Similarly, coins of provincial Egypt could show an image of Serapis, a god unique to Ancient Egypt.)

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Mount Argaeus (modern day Ericyes. Source: Wikipedia):

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Here is the coin description:

Caesarea Cappadocia, Commodus 177-192, Didrachm
Laureled head of Commodus right "AYT M AYP KOMO ANTWNI"
"YPi ATOC D Pi AT Pi A" Mt Argaeus surmounted by a star

Note that the coin inscriptions are in Greek, not the usual Latin. This would be in deference to the local population.

Here is another image (Top and bottom images from Wildwinds.com.)

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Here is a previous discussion on the mythology surrounding Mount Argaeus.


guy also known as gaius

Edited by guy
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On 12/4/2018 at 5:11 PM, Hungry Biscuit said:

Hi, this is really nice but as a rookie do you know where I could find one of these coins in the most legit way, without getting scammed?

Thank you for reading my post (from many, many years ago ūüėé).

Yes, you are correct to have concerns about forgeries. 

That said, there are many honest sellers in the market. When buying a coin from them, one could be fairly certain that the coin is authentic. There would be no need to get the coin certified by a service such as NGC Ancients.

Here is an excellent site with both excellent numismatic information and authenticate coins for sell:


One of the coins shown in my post above is in a plastic holder. It was certified by NGC Ancients. The decision whether to get ancient coins certified by NGC is one of the controversies of coin collecting.  Personally, I am not a coin collector. Despite looking at ancient coins for more than a quarter century, I am not always good at determining authenticity. Also, buying coins online can be fraught with danger. If I were to buy a coin online, especially from an unknown online seller, I would be comforted by a certification of authenticity from NGC. 

A final word of advice, remember that ancient coins are frequently less expensive than a novice would imagine. Please check comparable prices on the market before buying any coin. The site above (Forvm Ancient Coins) has many excellent coins offered for sell by coin dealers who are held to a high standard of numismatic ethics.  They are possibly little more expensive, but overall, they offer reasonable prices for ancient coins.

A good site to do coin research or enjoy coin discussion is below:


If you have any questions, you can send me a message. Good luck.



guy also known as gaius



Edited by guy
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