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RAWisSYDNEY
06-07-2001, 09:02 AM
Ok, i saw an auction on Ebay for '1000 Uncleaned Roman Coins'
they are at 2.00 each (Dutch Auction) and i was wondering if anyone could tell me if they would be real at that price?

i mean, $2.00?

the auction ends tomorrow and if anyone could give me some info it would be greatly appreciated.

thanks

cmkeller
06-07-2001, 09:23 AM
When I was in Israel (this is about 11 years ago), I bought a coin that old for the equivalent of about $15 US. So as a starting bid in the auction (which is usually intentionally lower than market value in order to attract interest), $2 each doesn't seem to me to be so low as to indicate fraud.

lesa
06-07-2001, 09:38 AM
There are a truly amazing number of Roman coins still around. Many places sell uncleaned coins. These coins are all small bronze coins (about dime size or smaller) that aren't worth much. Think about it, it's not even worth the dealer's time to clean them.

Here is a site that sells them. I don't know anything about this person, but this page has a lot of information. For example, slugs may be mixed in with the coins. It also discusses the grade of the coins.

http://members.spree.com/business/magic1112/coins.htm

The most expensive coins on this site are only $1.50. So the ebay auction is actually more expensive. If you buy from the auction, make sure what grade of coin you are buying. You probably won't be happy with a low grade coin, which may be broken or have a hole in it.


Go ahead and buy a coin like this if you want. Read up on the proper way to clean it and enjoy owning a real coin from ancient Rome. Just understand that the coin is only worth a dollar or so.

lucwarm
06-07-2001, 01:46 PM
Do a search for roman coins on ebay - I suspect you will find that they are constantly being auctioned off. So you don't stand to lose much by thinking things over.

The oldest Roman coin I have seen is over 2200 years old. (It's stamped "225 BC") It cost a few bucks, but hey - it probably went a long way in ancient Rome.


;)

Rayne Man
06-07-2001, 01:50 PM
"225 BC"? That sounds a bit fishy. How did the Romans know it was 225 BC if Christ had not been born yet.Me-thinks you have a fake.

Bumbazine
06-07-2001, 02:07 PM
Originally posted by lucwarm
The oldest Roman coin I have seen is over 2200 years old. (It's stamped "225 BC") It cost a few bucks, but hey - it probably went a long way in ancient Rome.


;)


Hey, I'd like to get me one of those. I could keep it in the display case with my skeleton of Columbus when he was a child. :D

slortar
06-07-2001, 02:49 PM
I actually have a bronze roman coin hanging up on my wall. My grandfather bought it. Being the restrained tasteful sort, he noticed the reign it was under, then pasted it next to the excerpt from the Ripley's Believe It Or Not about the "Emperor Who Strangled Himself With His Own Hands!!!!!" <---- the exclamation points are important. :)

Rayne Man
06-07-2001, 04:16 PM
Originally posted by Bumbazine
Originally posted by lucwarm
The oldest Roman coin I have seen is over 2200 years old. (It's stamped "225 BC") It cost a few bucks, but hey - it probably went a long way in ancient Rome.


;)


Hey, I'd like to get me one of those. I could keep it in the display case with my skeleton of Columbus when he was a child. :D


It would go well with the Ming Vase that has "dishwasher safe" engraved on it

Montfort
06-07-2001, 04:22 PM
And, of course, don't forget the 19th C. Navajo earthenware plates marked "microwave safe."

mipsman
06-07-2001, 09:10 PM
Jesus' high school graduation picture was available a few years ago but I think the Vatican bought it.

Quasimodem
06-07-2001, 10:19 PM
....from an e-bay merchant, and really, only one or two looked authentic enough to be from Roman times. I cleaned them as best I could, however, and gave them as Christmas presents. (I wrapped the presents and then used the coin as a "seal" on the ribbon! - I'm not thatcheap!:D)

Quasi

Fern Forest
06-07-2001, 10:28 PM
Did you buy 'em?
This might be a good investment if you find away to sell them for $4 a piece. I think if you're looking for invesmenting in Roman coins silver or gold might be better. But those can be real expensive. I only have 1 roman coin. A copper from the Emperor P... damn, forgot his name. He didn't live very long but he did beat a German army so he put that on the back of his coin.

Mangetout
06-08-2001, 03:54 AM
Originally posted by brother rat
...invesmenting...

Investmenting?

Fern Forest
06-08-2001, 04:45 AM
Originally posted by Mangetout
Originally posted by brother rat
...invesmenting...

Investmenting?

Well, I saw it and figured it was obvious what I meant and decided not to take up space but since you asked.
I orginally was going to type investment, and then changed my mind to investing as I was typing it.
BR

Mangetout
06-08-2001, 06:24 AM
Originally posted by brother rat
Originally posted by Mangetout
Originally posted by brother rat
...invesmenting...

Investmenting?

Well, I saw it and figured it was obvious what I meant and decided not to take up space but since you asked.
I orginally was going to type investment, and then changed my mind to investing as I was typing it.
BR

Sorry, thought it was just one of those annoying made-up words like 'Leveraging' and 'educationalizing'

Fern Forest
06-08-2001, 06:49 AM
quite alright. I had a problem of double or triple posting with little add-ons saying stuff like "when I said 'teh tree' I meant 'the tree.'" And I thought that was really annoying people. no biggie, salam

partly_warmer
06-08-2001, 07:07 AM
Originally posted by RAWisSYDNEY
Ok, i saw an auction on Ebay for '1000 Uncleaned Roman Coins'
they are at 2.00 each (Dutch Auction) and i was wondering if anyone could tell me if they would be real at that price?

i mean, $2.00?

the auction ends tomorrow and if anyone could give me some info it would be greatly appreciated.

thanks
I'm not an expert, here, but I have talked to experts. As a very rough rule of thumb, anything older than 300 years that is uncorroded, costs $2 and has recognizable faces is very likely to be fake.

$2 buys you, from a reputable dealer, a heavily corroded coin which is liable to have been very common in its day. In the way of perspective, it's hard to imagine getting excited about a buying a $2 Lincoln cent that's so destroyed no words can be recognized.

There are factories in Europe that turn out "antiques". $2 may not seem like a lot to pay, but if the cost of producing the fake is only 10 cents, then it's a viable business.

In the way of comparison, it's estimated that something like 60%-75% of Impressionist paintings on the market are fake. It's a big industry, and not the place for novices to go shopping for deals.

Fern Forest
06-08-2001, 07:23 AM
this isn't to say that there aren't a lot of Roman coins out there. Rome was a country of up to 50 million people. And the coined coins for about 1,000 years. That's a lot of coins out there. They still find hidden cashes of coins in Britain, buried when the Romans left and the Anglo-Saxons attacked. So there were probably billions of coins minted under Rome, which might be part of the reason why they're so cheap. Just because it's old doesn't mean it's expensive. It's supply/demand. If there's not enough demand, prices will fall. I think a good Roman copper would go from 40 to 150 dollars, depending on its era and number of coins in the production. But P. Warmer is right, it is easy to make fakes and sell to rubes. You should buy from a dealer who has a history and gives you a certificate of authenticity.

Morrison's Lament
06-08-2001, 07:41 AM
I just HAVE to know if you were serious about that 225BC coin lucwarm???

If so, I REALLY want one, for it is one of the funniest things I have heard in a long time! :D
Where did you see it?

--- G. Raven

DRY
06-09-2001, 02:40 AM
Originally posted by partly_warmer
I'm not an expert, here, but I have talked to experts. As a very rough rule of thumb, anything older than 300 years that is uncorroded, costs $2 and has recognizable faces is very likely to be fake.

$2 buys you, from a reputable dealer, a heavily corroded coin which is liable to have been very common in its day. In the way of perspective, it's hard to imagine getting excited about a buying a $2 Lincoln cent that's so destroyed no words can be recognized.

There are factories in Europe that turn out "antiques". $2 may not seem like a lot to pay, but if the cost of producing the fake is only 10 cents, then it's a viable business.
I used to work in for an ancient coin firm. But while I probably know more than most people, I'm not an expert per se. My background was more administrative assistant than coin cataloguer, dealer or numismatist.

The coins are likely real, albeit low grade and common (as far as Roman coins go). I doubt it's economically feasible to forge low grade coins. More expensive coins are more popular forgery items. (By the way, one quick and dirty way to check if a coin is a forgery is to check if there's a "seam" along the edge of the coin. However, no one way is foolproof).

Originally posted by brother rat
Did you buy 'em?
This might be a good investment if you find away to sell them for $4 a piece. I think if you're looking for invesmenting in Roman coins silver or gold might be better. But those can be real expensive. I only have 1 roman coin. A copper from the Emperor P... damn, forgot his name. He didn't live very long but he did beat a German army so he put that on the back of his coin.

My advice is not to buy ancient coins as an investment. The relatively illiquid market (a coin may be listed as being worth X dollars, but that doesn't do you any good if you can't find a buyer. Generally, American coins have a more reliable market, for example). I enjoy Roman and Greek coins, and have a handful myself, so I'm not recommending against collecting them--just investing. And yes, it IS possible to make money--it's just not easy.

brother rat, do you still have the coin? If so, can you look up (and post) the legend (on the obverse- "heads" side of the coin)? I could probably tell you who the emperor is with that info. The guess here is that it's Postumus or Probus...most of the other candidates, such as Pertinax or Pescennius Niger, weren't around very long. Their coins would be expensive.

Originally posted by Morrison's Lament
I just HAVE to know if you were serious about that 225BC coin lucwarm???

If so, I REALLY want one, for it is one of the funniest things I have heard in a long time! :D
Where did you see it?

--- G. Raven
Um, most Greek and Pre Roman Empire (ie, Roman Republic) coins are undated. The Roman Empire coins are usually dated by the ruler's regnal year (eg. "COS XII"). There won't be a "BC" or "AD"...

Fern Forest
06-09-2001, 02:53 AM
Originally posted by DRY
[b]brother rat, do you still have the coin? If so, can you look up (and post) the legend (on the obverse- "heads" side of the coin)? I could probably tell you who the emperor is with that info. The guess here is that it's Postumus or Probus...most of the other candidates, such as Pertinax or Pescennius Niger, weren't around very long. Their coins would be expensive.

I was indeed Probus, I remember giggling a wee bit about it.

obverse: PROBU, on one side, on the other, SPFRHG
those last 4 letters are hard to decifer, you know how F looks like P, U looks like A, H and so forth
reverse: VICTOR, IAGERM on the bottom RHA

I wont tell you how much I paid because I don't want to be told I got cheated, :D but it's dated to 278 and is in pretty good condition. The face is almost as good as Lincoln's.

DRY
06-09-2001, 03:10 AM
Originally posted by brother rat
I was indeed Probus, I remember giggling a wee bit about it.

obverse: PROBU, on one side, on the other, SPFRHG
those last 4 letters are hard to decifer, you know how F looks like P, U looks like A, H and so forth
reverse: VICTOR, IAGERM on the bottom RHA

I wont tell you how much I paid because I don't want to be told I got cheated, :D but it's dated to 278 and is in pretty good condition. The face is almost as good as Lincoln's.
I take it that it's an "antoninianus"? (A bronze coin, possibly with a silver wash. IIRC, it's about as big a nickel, but thinner)

As far as how much you paid, you can tell me via e-mail. ;)

Seriously, that type of coin is probably the type that will be see it's price go down over time, because it's a popular "horde" coin (found in hordes which are still being unearthed).

Fern Forest
06-09-2001, 04:00 AM
I think I'll keep the price with me, i'd rather not know. But thankfully I did not buy to invest buy bought to have. I think it's just cool to hold something that was used so long ago. Maybe I'll have it buried with me when I die?

Morrison's Lament
06-09-2001, 04:54 AM
Originally posted by DRY
Originally posted by Morrison's Lament
I just HAVE to know if you were serious about that 225BC coin lucwarm???

If so, I REALLY want one, for it is one of the funniest things I have heard in a long time! :D
Where did you see it?

--- G. Raven
Um, most Greek and Pre Roman Empire (ie, Roman Republic) coins are undated. The Roman Empire coins are usually dated by the ruler's regnal year (eg. "COS XII"). There won't be a "BC" or "AD"... [/B]


Ehm, hence the humour of it... get it? I mean, the letters BC wouldn't mean anything to a person 225 years before Christ was born!!
It's like having a three dollar bill :D

--- G. Raven

Arken
06-09-2001, 05:21 AM
Sorry, thought it was just one of those annoying made-up words like 'Leveraging' and 'educationalizing'

Or subliminable.

Hey, I'd like to get me one of those. I could keep it in the display case with my skeleton of Columbus when he was a child.

So you're the guy who bought those. They were going to look really great next to my complete collection of all 11 actual fingerbones of St. Augustine and my potrzebie. :D

Fern Forest
06-09-2001, 06:51 AM
Originally posted by Arken
So you're the guy who bought those. They were going to look really great next to my complete collection of all 11 actual fingerbones of St. Augustine and my potrzebie. :D

I'm still looking for the original Roman version of Caligula, it must be out there somewhere.

DRY
06-09-2001, 07:27 AM
Originally posted by Morrison's Lament
Ehm, hence the humour of it... get it? I mean, the letters BC wouldn't mean anything to a person 225 years before Christ was born!!
It's like having a three dollar bill :D

--- G. Raven
Oh, I'm aware of the BC "paradox". I thought, for once, to answer the question seriously and give a straight answer. No flirting hijacks in GQ for me!

Unless she's really, really cute.

red_dragon60
06-09-2001, 11:05 AM
I have bought some. The Romans buried their wealth when tehy went off on military campaigns and such, not ahving any banks. So when they died, their stuff was left in the ground. There are hills stuffed with these caches. Mine were from the Balkans. All someone really needs is a metal detector to find these.

And I have a few coins that cleaned up nicely, the others are just slugs. Go for it if you want cheap history.

DRY
06-10-2001, 02:39 AM
For what it's worth, if anyone has any Roman coins that they can't identify, feel free to drop me an e-mail with any info you can provide (IE, the legends on the obverse and reverse, etc.). (I'm not as good with Greek coins, but would try to help)

I have a handful or Roman coins and only one or two Greek (an Aegina turtle). Most of my Roman coins, are, to be expected, quite common, but I do have at least one or two fairly nice ones (Worth a couple hundred, maybe. Nothing in the thousands).

Somewhere, I believe I do have a coin of Nero, but it's so worn that it's not worth anything. :(

clayton_e
06-10-2001, 03:00 AM
Yeah, they're cheap. They had a very efficient minting process. They're digging up hundreds and thousands of those a week over there. 2 much supply, not enough demand. kinda cool though, i bought 1 for $15, has Caeser on it.

DRY
06-10-2001, 03:10 AM
Originally posted by clayton_e
Yeah, they're cheap. They had a very efficient minting process. They're digging up hundreds and thousands of those a week over there. 2 much supply, not enough demand. kinda cool though, i bought 1 for $15, has Caeser on it.

Do you happen to have it handy? What's the legend on the obverse and reverse?

I'm pretty skeptical that this is JULIUS Caesar, though I suppose it isn't impossible.