It occurs to me that of the VB series whose mint is usually listed as unknown is found in large numbers in the Canosa hoard. Anyway. VB is probably just some junior official. No coins of Vibinum are known or much else about it for that matter! Just thought I’d share the wild speculation for kicks. (And because the specimen above is just so beautiful!)
When Mommsen attributed this type to Vibo Valentia, he did not have the benefit of any strong dating evidence. Vibo was not founded until 192 (planned 194; Livy 34.53 and 35.39) and once it was founded it used Valentia on its coins not Vibo.
Amongst other things is a place called Thuriae, not Thurii mind you, that features in Livy’s narrative:
During the year a fleet of Greek ships under the command of the Lacedaemonian Cleonymus sailed to the shores of Italy and captured the city of Thuriae in the Sallentine country. The consul, Aemilius, was sent to meet this enemy, and in one battle he routed him and drove him to his ships. Thuriae was restored to its former inhabitants, and peace was established in the Sallentine territory.
[In case you’re wondering, the Sallentine territory or peninsula is the heel of Italy’s boot.]
This little mystery led to finding this 1932 publication that suggests it is the same as Turi, outside of Bari.
The interesting thing about this publication is how it ended up on the web. The provincial administration of Brindisi seems to have decided in 2012 to scan and archive online pretty much every last regional publication. Here’s the announcement. There is as far as I can find no easy portal for searching through all the old newspapers and journals to find the relevant bits, but the archive is hiding lots of numismatic tidbits. For instance, here’s the publication of the Salvatore Hoard.
The best I’ve found to mine its depths is to use Google site search. Just go to the google homepage and enter a likely term in Italian, say ‘didramma’, and then ‘site:emeroteca.provincia.brindisi.it’. Leave off the quotes.
Postscript. I just don’t think the Cleonymus of Polyaenus’s Stratagems is the same character. It’s just too early a date for the Romans to control Apollonia and Epidamnus.