Versión en español 

Isis Festivals Tokens - Rome, fourth century A.D.


Doubtful, manipulated, errors, imitations,
retouched and counterfeit tokens.




There is an AE3 of Crispo (2.25 g - 16 mm) with a soldier on the reverse carrying globe and cornucopia, but it is an specimen that has been too retouched and we cannot accept this supposed new type of reverse.

In my opinion, neither the bust of Crispus nor the soldier on the reverse are credible. Most likely, they took a coin with the legend SPES REIPVBLICE (see comparative image) and manipulated it that way to increase its price.

This "artifact" is currently in the collection of the Staatliche Museen zu Berlin (object 18257026) and appears in the NOT in RIC database, where they indicate the visible retouching, but they do not say that it is simply... a invented reverse!

Coin sold for 550 eur. at Gorny & Mosch, auction 186 (03-08-2010), lot 2318.
(Note: In that same auction another very retouched token was sold. See lot 2340).





Specimen pierced twice.

Making a hole to hang them is something very typical of these coins.
But in this case they made two, perhaps to be able to sew it to the clothes.


Specimen holed and reused as a counter or game piece.

The hole is typical of these coinage but also they have left the reverse smooth
to engrave the numeral "XIII" so it is not appreciated what type it was.


Specimen reused as a counter or game piece.

They have left the reverse smooth to engrave the numeral "XVI" so it is not appreciated what type it was.


Exemplary perhaps reused as a game token.

They have left the obverse smooth but in this case they have not engraved any numerals.





Reverse with wrong letters.

Instead of VOTA PVBLICA they put VOTA PVBLLCA, a small mistake but a mistake nonetheless

Type of error that is repeated with some assiduity to be the official mint of Rome
In any case, the mint in Rome is the one with the fewest errors,
logically it had the best operators and the greatest controls.


Obverse with wrong letters.

We can see DEO SARARIDI instead of DEO SARAPIDI (type 6/2)

We also know:
DEO SAPAPIDI (type 13/3), SEPAPIDI (6/8, 13/4 y 26/5), SARADIDI (13/15) and SARARIDI (26/4)
(Instead of  DEO SARAPIDI and DEO SERAPIDI, respectively).


Obverse with wrong letters.

Unusual legend, besides being wrong (FAIRA instead of FARIA),
begins top right and goes downwards (type 29/3).
(Therefore Cohen VIII 68: 4 erroneously indicated: "AIRA ISIF")

Instead of ISIS FARIA, we also know:
ISIS EARIA (see types 13/8, 26/11 and 29/13) e ISIS FAIRA (see 13/27 and 29/12)


Legend that does not correspond.

It is curious to see the bust of Isis with the legend DEO SARAPIDI, typical of Serapis (type 26/13).
An oversight of the person in charge of making the legends that is also observed in the 13/6 type.





Retrograde legends.

In this case the letters are irregular and they engraved the legends badly, in a retrograde way,
which leads us to think that it is surely an imitation of the time, not an official coin.





Excessively retouched specimen, with invented letters.

- Token sold in Gorny & Mosch, auction 186 (2010-03-08), lot 2340.


Excessively retouched token.

- Token sold in H. D. Rauch, auction 108 (2019-06-04), lot 398.





Fakes of this type of tokens are not very abundant, but of course they exist.

Watch out for them !!!


On 10-19-2012 this counterfeit was auctioned at with a starting price of 200 eur. They indicated that it was a very rare piece (RRR), an AE of 15 mm and 1.59 g. And it was not sold, of course.

Shortly after this hideous piece appeared in Artemide Aste 19 (21-10-2012), lot 381.

Incredible! Now (July, 2023) we can see it as genuine token in the "on line" catalog of the University of Warwick (UK).
- Type 21. "Bricault & Mondello specimen no. E169.1".


This specimen is a modern forgery. The piece was cast by using the Budapest specimen (no. 329) as a model. The marks corresponding to the holes and the lack of blanking of the original piece are visible.

Information taken from the "on line" catalog of the University of Warwick (UK), type 266: "Bricault & Mondello - S&I29.2" and from Magyar Nemzeti Múzeum de Budapest website.




Introduction Not in Alföldi 1 - 2 - 3


      M. Pina   -  Javi