Roman Coins

Click to enlarge image of Roman Coins What does the presence of Roman Coins tell us
Numismatics or the study of coins, provide a wealth of information as coinage was not previously used amongst the Northern British tribes so their very presence points to that of the Roman army, with the denominations of coin even giving some indication of the rank of the soldiers.

Professor Shotter very kindly examined the four Roman coins found in and around the site at Mellor and explained what is known about them. A fascinating aspect of this is not only in whose reign�the coins were produced ( giving us a range of possible production dates) but also, jusing the amount of wear of the surfaces and edges as a guide,�how long they might have been in circulation and when they might have been lost and ended up in the ground.

Click to enlarge image of Coin of Vespasian Click to enlarge image of Coin of Vespasian
The coins themselves can be dated, but there may also be further refinements of date, such as the amount of wear. Two coins of the Emperor Vespasian, who reigned between 69-79AD, one a silver Denarius, were quite worn.
Click to enlarge image of Coin of VespasianWe also have a bronze Sesterius, which is a posthumous issue from the time of the Empress Faustina second, daughter of Marcus Aurelius. This is relatively unworn and together the information points to loss of all of these coins in second half of second century.

Click to enlarge image of Coin of Vespasian
In times of poor supply such as during the reign of Claudius, the army was forced to mint it�s own coins. These poor copies would be quickly withdrawn from circulation again�when supply had improved.�We have an example of this with a much later coin which is an Aurelian copy of that of Emperor Claudius Second, who reigned between 268-270AD. This one is also quite wornand because of way these copies were made and circulated, it indicates a date of loss, when it was dropped somewhere on the Mellor Hilltop, somewhere after AD300.

With thanks to Professor David Shotter