50 out of 234 days: RRC 346 in context

This blog is going to be really worried about RRC 346 and related issues now through April as that’s the topic of my next conference paper, my colleagues are going to be working mostly on the Schaefer material so I’ve volunteered to think about the hoard evidence to get the two to talk to each other. Maybe, if I can manage it.

There are seven hoard from Pennisular Italy and Sicily from the period 88-86 BCE (a narrow window to be sure!) in the CHRR database. Of these only 5 contain RRC 346.

I want to look just at how RRC 346 looks compared to other very recent issues so I only compared it to RRC 334-349, basically post 100 BCE issues containing denarii.

On the below graph time moves bottom to top for issues and left to right for hoards (although the latter is less ‘real’ in any meaningful sense of our knowledge of time of deposition.)

The issue Marcius Censorinus coin types are the purple. Notice how much thinner it is that any of the other types, especially RRC 341, 342, RRC 344, and RRC 348. Arguably the first three had a longer time to build up in the circulation pool, but not so RRC 348 which is thought to have only been made a year later.

If I redraw this I think I better include the two hoards missing RRC 346 as well. I’m not even sure this is the right means of visualizing this, but it sort of works for me to see what I need to see.

The number of hoard is really small so I will probably also do it again with hoards closing before 82 or 80 BCE to try to get more data into the conversation. Anyway. This is the beginning of my thought process on the appearance of this issue in Italian hoards. I’ll refine my views over the weeks to come.

I also want to think about what hoards it ISN’T in and why that might be.

On the docket

prep for ‘screening’

notify standing appointment of late arrival

respond to post-conference emails

Inquire about recent Morgantina publications and how they might change the dating for the introduction of the denarius and other Hannibalic War coin developments, etc…

Give feedback on exhibition blurbs

Begin April conference Prep

Post Doc scheduling

Book manuscript feedback

set up phone convo with dept colleague

collect sickle series data and a share

Review Charles Parisot’s 2018 article and write up blog post on Victoriatus, esp. idea that it is a 1/2 denarius from beginning and the fixed ratio of copper to silver.

2 thoughts on “50 out of 234 days: RRC 346 in context”

  1. Here’s some unrestrained speculation. Estimate that the victoriatus was ~3/4 denarius in weight(3.33g/4.44g) and ~4/5 in purity(~80%/98%). 3/4 x .8/.98 ≃ 60%. However, while the Victoriatus weight was steady ≤200 BC, the fineness varied substantially from issue to issue. Therefore, I’d guess a victoriatus was, averaging over all issues, worth ~60% of a denarius ≤200 BC. In order to help it circulate, the RR put no sign of value on it, unlike the denarius + its fractions
    By RRC166, the vict. weighed quite a bit less. I’ve never seen
    measurements of 167’s fineness.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s