I did switch gears quite efficiently and spent the day revising a previous paper to present in two weeks time. It’s all about coins, but I find myself reluctant to talk here about things I’m working out for immediate presentation else where. I made a reference there to the memory of the Battle of Lake Regillus, saying it “…was only won by Romans through the divine intervention of the Dioscuri and the resulting treaty was one of mutual dense, protection, and collaboration. The moral of that story is that Rome needs the Latins…” I decided to think about whether this seemed a reasonable claim for the message behind other portrayals of the myth. The coin above is taken to be a moment in that battle recalling the moneyer’s ancestor’s desperate act of hurling the standard amongst the enemy to motivate his men a turning pointing in the battle that is linked to human, not divine, action.
The same moneyer also minted a coin of the Dioscuri watering their horses at Lake Juturna, an image associated with the divine announcement of victory far off from the city. This is the Dioscuri as messengers, not necessarily saviors. These images seem most concerned with connecting the moneyer’s family with a defining moment in Rome’s legendary history. I’m not sure I see in them any real concern about relations with Latins or greater Italy.
Afterthoughts: It occurs to me that the second coin is in fact a form of epiphany not unlike the Sulla vision coin of the previous week. There is a significant literature on epiphanies and that might be the correct angle to investigate. This particular epiphany is said to explain the origins of the placement of the Temple of Castor in the forum. It also is said to have recurred after later battles in the historical period, connecting them in magnitude and significance to the Battle of Lake Regillus. Could any of the later epiphanies/battles be recalled by this coin as well?
In other new SDA finished the edits and I actually got to send off the revised chapter and wipe it off the mirror. The first accomplishment of the sabbatical!