Coin Community Family of Web Sites
Like us on Facebook! Subscribe to our Youtube Channel! Check out our Twitter! Check out our Pinterest!
Username:
Password:
Save Password
Forgot your Password?


Welcome Guest! Need help? Got a question? Inherit some coins?
Our coin forum is completely free! Register Now!

Women Of Rome - Helena

 
To participate in the forum you must log in or register.
Author Previous TopicReplies: 15 / Views: 2,023Next Topic  
Pillar of the Community
United States
1304 Posts
 Posted 01/31/2018  08:08 am Show Profile   Bookmark this topic Add EFLargeCents to your friends list Get a Link to this Message
It has been awhile since a thread has been created for the Women of Rome series. I apologize for that. Here is the next in line. Helena. I doubt I can do a write up of her any justice, there is a lot written about her out there and I encourage those interested to read about her life. The short short short version, she was low born who became the mother of emperor Constantine The Great.

Her coinage consists of a majority of follis with a small number of gold solidus from a couple mints. Most of the operating mints at the time issued coinage with her likeness, including London. The majority of the reverses were SECVRITAS REIPVBLICE.

Mine is RIC79E from the Heraclea Mint.

Pillar of the Community
United Kingdom
1755 Posts
 Posted 01/31/2018  08:22 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add maridvnvm to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
That is a gorgeous looking coin and particularly so for Heraclea where the artistry can be quite varied in quality. The golden toning is very attractive.

I have only bought one Helena recently (last year) which was a common Trier example.

Helena - AE3

Obv:- FL HELENA AVGVSTA, Diademed, draped bust right
Rev:- SECVRITAS REIPVBLICE, Securitas, standing left, holding branch
Minted in Trier (//STR).
Reference:- RIC VII Trier 458



Regards,
Martin
Moderator
Learn More...
United States
91034 Posts
 Posted 01/31/2018  08:32 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add jbuck to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
It has been awhile since a thread has been created for the Women of Rome series. I apologize for that. Here is the next in line. Helena.
Excellent!

I have updated the sticky to link this topic.

Just three more women to go.
Pillar of the Community
Learn More...
Spain
2021 Posts
 Posted 01/31/2018  09:27 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Palouche to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Wow!What a lovely coin and superb photography EFL !!

I 've got one on the way and when she arrives I'll post her..but she isn't as nice as yours!

Great to see the thread up and running again and look forward to following and 'learning'..

How many mints were there for her?

Paul

Moderator
Learn More...
United States
23278 Posts
 Posted 01/31/2018  10:09 am  Show Profile   Check echizento's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add echizento to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
That is a beautiful coin, excellent strike and patina. I like yours also Martin. Wish my example were this nice.
Pillar of the Community
United States
948 Posts
 Posted 02/20/2018  10:21 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add lrbguy to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Great start guys. Sorry to be the holdup. I know this has been a long time in coming, and I hope you will soon understand why . This part of my posts to this thread will be limited to the reduced folles (aka nummi) issued for Helena. I will be adding a separate listing of styles and mints for the AE4 posthumous coinage in her honor as issued later by the heirs of Constantine. More on that at that time.

If we may count my earlier display for Galeria Valeria by mint as the first Women of Rome "style show," my first contribution to this thread for Helena will be a style show of her hairstyles on the reduced folles for the various mints; i.e. 14 of 15 with the exception of London. All but one of these will be of the SECURITES REPUBLICE reverse type. The obverse design for each of these is a variant on a common style designated by Patrick Bruun as "E10" in RIC VII. Its details will be set forth below. Within each mint the coins are here arranged chronologically by series* but only where the bust design showed a noticeable difference in hairstyle. Many of the differences are quite subtle, within a mint as well as between mints, but in some cases the styles are quite distinctive.
....*Series dates are differentiated by style of mintmark.

A Word about Order

Mints are listed from west to east following the order in RIC VII. In each case I indicate the range of dates coins were produced for Helena at that mint, then note the number of production series known, and give the catalog numbers for any entries missing from this display. Then I show the entries for each series in chronological order and give the catalog reference, mint mark characteristics, and date of issue for each coin shown. I use written comments to call attention to specific features.

By this listing I hope list members can more easily recognize when they have a design type not yet listed here and add it to our "collection." My hope is that this will stimulate you to seek out good examples of the missing coins and bring them to our attention. In any case, please add whatever examples of these reduced folles you have, and tell us about them.

All the coin images in this post were taken by me of coins in my collection.


Londonium/London (324-325)
(missing: RIC299) One series issued, seldom in market


Lugdunum/Lyons (324-325)

One series, as here. Her hair is simply combed back and combed under at the base, then secured with a banded diadem with a ladder-like segmentation. A row of bangs hang across the front below the diadem.
RIC 234 (PLG) 324-25


Treveri/Trier (324-328)
Missing:RIC458, 465, 515

Two of five series represented here. In both of these the hair appears to be covered by an open cap with a high well defined crest, and a prominent base which might also serve as a diadem.

Series 3: Our first example is from the third series, in which the crest resembles a laurel band with an arc of pearls beneath it. The hair has only a shallow loop at ear level. The diadem is banded with two rows of dots (pearls).
RIC 481 (STRdot/crescent) 326



Series 4: Here the crest appears as a cap with laurel decoration and bounded by pearls all around. This "cap" extends down the neck to the ear and forward beyond the diadem. The diadem is a plain band with a row of pearls in it.
RIC 508 (STRE) 327-28



Arelate/Arles (324-329)
Missing: RIC278, 317, 324, 340

Series 2: Hairstyle, not crested, curves around to the neck, with "ladder"-style band diadem, with or without dots, and bangs grouped below the diadem.
RIC 299 (TAcresentRL) 325-26



Series 3: Same hairstyle as series 2.
RIC 307 (S F/TARL) 326-27



Rome (324-326)
Missing: RIC270

Series 2: coarsely braided crest arches over other hair to back of neck and curves back to ear. Diadem band "laddered" with dot in each cell. Rosette centered in front.
RIC 291 (RwreathQ) 326




Ticinum (325-327)
Missing: RIC209
Three series with high arching crest and simple diadem.

Series 1:Moderate double crest of braids arches to diadem, below is a looping queue. Grouped bangs across front. Diadem is a single strand of pearls; no front decoration. Earring.
RIC 190 (TT) 325



Series 2: High double crest of braids arches to diadem, below is a looping queue. Grouped bangs across front. Diadem is a single strand of pearls; prominent rosette; grouped bangs below diadem. Earring.
RIC 202 (QcrescentT) 326



Siscia (324-329
Missing: RIC 187

Of four series the first two are only represented in RIC by a single coin each. We begin with an unlisted example from the second series.

Series 2: High arching double crest of braids (waves of curls?) above a third wave, all above single strand of pearls, ends in a short queue below ear. Simple bangs below diadem.
The mark style was represented in RIC by a single example, only for officina E.
RIC 196 (ASISwreath) 325 --not listed in RIC



Series 3: Hair combed back without crest, bobbed in a queue at back below ear. grouped bangs below diadem. Short banded diadem with a single row of small, widely spaced dots.
RIC 204 (.ΓSIS.) 326-27



Series 4: Same as series 3 except for a pronounced loop of hair in front over diadem.
RIC 218 (ΓSISdbl-crescent) 328-29



Sirmium (324-325)

Single series with hair combed back without crest, bobbed in a queue at back below ear. grouped bangs below diadem. Short banded diadem with a single row of small, widely spaced dots. (compare Siscia)

RIC 60 (SIRM) 324-25



Thessalonica (318; 326-328)

The earliest Imperial bronze reduced folles/nummi in honor of Helena begin in Thessalonika in 318 with the distinctive "star in wreath" reverse type. This preceded her elevation to Augusta (324) and marks her elevation to the lesser status of Nobilissima Femina (N F on the obverse). The obverse bust is very distinct from the later series, inasmuch as her hair is combed straight back and secured in a chignon at the back at about the level of her ear. There is neither diadem nor a row of bangs in front.
RIC48 A6 318-19


Though honored in gold at her elevation to Augusta in 324, there is no more bronze for her until 326 when Thessalonica joins the other mints in issuing the SECVRITAS REPVBLICE reverse type for her. Although this continued in production for two years, only one series was produced.

Officina 3: the hair is combed up slightly and back, with no crest. The diadem is a "laddered" band with curved crossbars and a dot in each segment.
RIC 159 (SMTSΓ) 326-28



Officina 5: the hair is combed back in large circular arches, but with no crest. The diadem is "laddered" with a dot in each segment.
RIC 159 (SMTSε) 326-28



Heraclea (325-330)
Missing: RIC109, 110

Here are the first three of five series from Heraclea having an issue for Helena.

Series 1: Finely combed high arching twisted queue arches over her hair front to back of the neck and takes on a flat bottom at the level of her chin. Tight curls hang below the diadem in front. In this series the diadem is a simple band with large dots.
RIC 79 (SMHε) 325-26



Series 2: combed hair front to back without crest or queue. Tight curls hang below the diadem in front. The diadem is a simple band with a single row of small dots
RIC85 (SMHε.) 326



Series 3: Three braids arch front to back over combed hair and are tied up in a rounded queue at the back of the neck. Tight curls hang below the diadem in front. The diadem is a simple band with a single row of small dots.
RIC89 (.SMHΔ) 326-27



Constantinople (326-327)

Only one series, from the only two officinae that produced them. The slight differences in the appearance of the hairstyle may only be due to wear and not design.


Three braids arch front to back over combed hair and are tied up in a rounded queue at the back of the neck. Tight curls hang below the diadem in front. The diadem is a simple band with a single row of small dots.
RIC11 (A/CONS) 326-27



Two braids arch front to back, otherwise as above.
RIC11 (B/CONS) 326-27



Nicomedia (324-329)
Missing: RIC 95, 159

Four series of coins were issued for Helena. Shown here are the second and third series, arranged by date. For these her hairstyle is typically crested with a line of pearls, banded or unbanded, as a diadem. Details of the diadem decoration vary.

Series 2: crested with simple string of pearls as diadem. Bangs in front.
RIC129 (MNΓ) 325-26



Series 3: crested with band of pearls as diadem. Grouped bangs in front.
RIC148 (NΔ) end326-27




Cyzicus (324-328)

Cyzicus issued coins for Helena in four series, shown here.

Series 1: the top crest is represented by feathery strokes pointing back, as is the hair above the band of pearls, which is represented by a single string. Her hair hangs in bangs below the string of pearls
RIC28 (SMKΓ) 324-25



Series 2: the crest appears as wisps of hair combed back. The hair above the band appears as short vertical strokes, but the band is a double row of mounted pearls. Her hair appears as horizontal waves below the band.
RIC39 (SMKA.) 325-26



Series 3:
(at officina gamma) the top crest is represented by arched strokes pointing back, as is the hair above the band of pearls, which is represented by a single row of mounted pearls. Her hair hangs in bangs below the band of pearls
RIC49 (.SMKΓ.) 326-27 (dbl dot; off 3)



(at officina delta); the style is very similar to the first series: the crest is represented by strong strokes pointing back, as is the hair above the band of pearls, which is represented by a single string. Her hair hangs in bangs below the string of pearls
RIC49 (.SMKΔ.) 326-27 (dbl dot; off 4)



Series 4: All the hair above the band of pearls is brushed back slightly, with no crest. Below a single row of mounted pearls her hair hangs in bangs.
RIC54 (SMKΓ/dot) 327-28



Antioch (325-329)
Missing: RIC61, 75
Reduced follis/nummus coinage for Helena started with an anepigraphic type in 324. This was replaced in 325 with the E10 obverse bust and SECVRITAS REIPVBLICE reverse, which continued in production into 329. Hairstyle design sequence types:
1-single or double row of dots; hair-crest
2. diademed
a. band diadem, plain or row of dots (no bars); hair crest
b. ladder shaped diadem; usually w/o hair crest

RIC67 (SMANTA or B) type 2b 325-26



RIC82 (.SMANT/Δε) type 2a with dots; 328-29



Alexandria
Missing: RIC 44, 53, 57

Bruun in RIC VII describes the hair on the busts from this mint as "Magnia Urbica" fashion for all five series. (See images in index thread for Magnia Urbica)

Series 1: barest treatment of crest, main hair, and tail; single strand diadem
RIC38 (SMALB) 325-26



Series 3: hair strands well defined with crest; band diadem with single row of dots
RIC48 (wreath/SMAL/A) 327-28



Series 3 (variant?): Although the hair is less defined, as in the first series, I think here that may be attributed to manner of execution and preservation.
RIC48 (wreath/SMAL/A) 327-28


Here it must be admitted that the sample of examples for each of these varieties is not sufficient to be at all conclusive about the original forms and variants. These results must be seen as preliminary. Nonetheless, these ARE examples of each of these types, and may set down general parameters for what to expect.

This completes the images for the reduced folles of Helena. Do you have a favorite?
Edited by lrbguy
02/21/2018 7:21 pm
Pillar of the Community
United States
5264 Posts
 Posted 02/20/2018  10:32 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Bob L to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Wow, lrb. That is a five-star post if ever I saw one. Great coins, great info, and great photography. Thanks for sharing. No favorite for me, cause I like 'em all!
Pillar of the Community
Learn More...
Spain
2021 Posts
 Posted 02/21/2018  07:53 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Palouche to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Super post lrb!!,As always...Great info and coins!


Quote:
Do you have a favorite?


They are all excellent coins..wow...

If I had to choose it would be the Thessalonika,star in wreath..
but purely for the different reverse and that different obverse hairstyle makes it stand out more..

Thanks for spending the time and effort on this thread as it will be a great source of reference for beginners and experienced collectors alike..

Paul

Pillar of the Community
United States
948 Posts
 Posted 02/21/2018  7:14 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add lrbguy to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Thanks for the comments Bob and Paul. I hope it will be useful, though I kind of have my doubts. Nonetheless, I want to call attention to a note that may have gotten swallowed up in my verbiage: for each mint I have indicated the RIC numbers of coins I am missing, in the hopes that others may fill in the gaps. For example, Martin posted Trier 458. when you go to Trier in my list you find that 458 was from the first series; that it does not appear among the coins I show, and that I have listed it as missing. Thanks to Martin, the group can see it.

The coin that EFLC posted has a different look to it, especially the bangs, from the coin I posted from the same mint and series. That broadens the horizons.

That's exactly how its supposed to work. Unfortunately I have learned here and in another group that posts which come late to the party seem to be regarded as chopped liver. If there's never going to be any real discussion of these things, I'm just not sure it's worth the effort. Seems it's easier to start a new thread than pay attention to an existing one. I hope I'm wrong about that, but on another list they seem to spend a lot of time reinventing the wheel.
Edited by lrbguy
02/21/2018 7:24 pm
Pillar of the Community
Learn More...
Spain
2021 Posts
 Posted 02/22/2018  04:43 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Palouche to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Have been looking into these and interestingly there is one feature that seems to stand out only from the Siscia mint ?...
The folds/creases of the clothing below the necklace and above the breast always seems to run vertically whereas all the other mints run horizontally I'm not 100% on this but it might help attribute worn coins obviously using other indicators as well....

Any thoughts?

Paul
Pillar of the Community
United States
1304 Posts
 Posted 02/23/2018  1:55 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add EFLargeCents to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Fantastic informational presentation. The mint that sticks out the most to me is Arles, the portrait is the most "odd" looking. After that the Thessalonica with chignon (RIC48) is most interesting, as it doesn't follow any of the other pattern busts out there. I wonder why? Did it have a special meaning?

I noticed you also do not have an example from London. I am on the hunt for that one, one of the few rulers I don't have that had coins struck in Britannia.
Pillar of the Community
Learn More...
Spain
2021 Posts
 Posted 05/30/2018  05:39 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Palouche to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Arrived today...and as I said earlier in this thread, the tendency of the folds/creases running vertically from the Siscia mint..

Helena AE3 (19mm, 3.30g). Struck 326-327 AD
Obv- FL HELENA AVGVSTA, Diademed and draped bust right.
Rev- SECVRITAS REI PVBLICE, Securitas standing left, holding olive branch in extended right hand.
ESIS. (mint of Siscia) . RIC VII #204. RARE - rated R-1. VF,
Paul
Valued Member
United Kingdom
391 Posts
 Posted 12/15/2019  09:17 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Novicius to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
A lot of work and effort went into your presentation Lrbguy, and it makes a most enjoyable read. Thank you. What an impressive amount of different mints, portraits and hair styles. I couldn't pick a favourite either as they are all beautiful and interesting. (As are the coins posted by other members.)

While in Ascension and the Falkland Islands I met quite a few Saint Helenians, and had no idea that their island was named after Saint Helena of Constantinople. She holds an important place in history.

I recently acquired the coin below, and noticed that there are subtle differences in this one too.

Helena AE Follis. FL HELENA AVGVSTA, diademed and draped bust right / SECVRITAS REIPVBLICE, Securitas standing left, holding branch in right hand. Mintmark PTR dot in crescent.
Pillar of the Community
United States
5264 Posts
 Posted 12/15/2019  11:00 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Bob L to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Nice coin, Jim.


Quote:
What an impressive amount of different mints, portraits and hair styles.


Regarding the hairstyles, The Celator ran an interesting two-part story on empresses' hairstyles in the May and June 1997 issues, which are available online for anyone who may be interested. If direct linking doesn't work, you'd have to cut-and-paste the url's.

http://community.vcoins.com/celator-vol-11-no-05/
http://community.vcoins.com/celator-vol-11-no-06/

Pillar of the Community
Learn More...
Spain
2021 Posts
 Posted 12/15/2019  5:04 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Palouche to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Yep! really good looking coin Jim....

I really like the irregular flan shape aswell...I'm a bit of a sucker of mishapen forms...

Your example of the Trier mint coin shows the creases/folds of the garment running horizontally..

So I still stand by my assumption that Siscia mint coins have the garment creases running vertically?!

Nice coin!...Paul....
Valued Member
United Kingdom
391 Posts
 Posted 12/15/2019  7:24 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Novicius to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
@Bob L. Thank you Bob. The links worked fine.

I really enjoyed the in-depth article(s) in the Celator by Marvin Tameanko. I'll keep these links to read again, as there is a lot to absorb in one reading. He gives an amazing insight into what life was like in those days too, and particularly interesting was the inter-family relationships. A thoroughly good read. Thanks again.

@Palouche. Thank you too Paul. I think it is more than assumption that only coins minted in the Siscia mint had the vertical garment creases, as no others seem to exist. One can only wonder if it was the mint asserting it's individuality?

Looking at the coin images in the forum pages I am in awe at the skill of these early die makers. To create these miniature masterpieces with just basic hand tools is truly wonderful.

Jim
  Previous TopicReplies: 15 / Views: 2,023Next Topic  
 
To participate in the forum you must log in or register.



Disclaimer: While a tremendous amount of effort goes into ensuring the accuracy of the information contained in this site, Coin Community assumes no liability for errors. Copyright 2005 - 2020 Coin Community Family- all rights reserved worldwide. Use of any images or content on this website without prior written permission of Coin Community or the original lender is strictly prohibited.
Contact Us  |  Advertise Here  |  Privacy Policy / Terms of Use

Coin Community Forum © 2005 - 2020 Coin Community Forums
It took 0.98 seconds to rattle this change. Powered By: Snitz Forums 2000 Version 3.4.05