Roma Numismatics Ltd > E-Sale 116Auction date: 18 January 2024
Lot number: 813

Price realized: 80 GBP   (Approx. 101 USD / 93 EUR)   Note: Prices do not include buyer's fees.
Lot description:


Commodus AR Denarius. Rome, AD 191-192. L AEL AVREL COMM AVG P FEL, bust to right, wearing lion skin headdress / HERCVL ROMAN AVGV, written in three lines across club within wreath. RIC III 251; BMCRE 339. RSC 190. 2.84g, 18mm, 6h.

Very Fine.

Commodus is often credited by ancient sources with the near destruction of the Roman Empire, through a combination of disinterest in governance and an all-consuming belief that he was of god-like status. With his accession, says the contemporary historian Cassius Dio, the history of the Roman Empire descended from a kingdom of gold to one of iron and rust, as affairs did for the Romans of that day (LXXII.36.4).

By the latter years of his reign when this denarius was struck, Commodus believed Hercules was his divine patron, and he worshipped him so intensely that eventually he came to believe himself an incarnation of the mythological hero, thus reinforcing the image he was cultivating of himself as a demigod who, as the son of Jupiter, was the representative of the supreme god of the Roman pantheon. The growing megalomania of the emperor permeated all areas of Roman life, as is witnessed in the material record by the innumerable statues erected around the empire portraying him in the guise of Hercules (including the famous 'Commodus as Hercules' sculpture now located in the Capitoline Museums), and his coinage.

Estimate: 50 GBP

Match 1:
Roma Numismatics Ltd > E-Sale 117Auction date: 22 February 2024
Lot number: 907

Price realized: 95 GBP   (Approx. 120 USD / 111 EUR)   Note: Prices do not include buyer's fees.
Lot description:


Commodus AR Denarius. Rome, AD 191-192. L AEL AVREL COMM AVG P FEL, bust to right in lion's skin headdress / HERCVL ROMAN AVGV, written in three lines across club within wreath. RIC III 251; BMCRE 339. RSC 190. 3.30g, 17mm, 11h.

Very Fine.

Ex Roma Numismatics Ltd., E-Sale 104, 15 December 2022, lot 1010.

Commodus is often credited by ancient sources with the near destruction of the Roman Empire, through a combination of disinterest in governance and an all-consuming belief that he was of god-like status. With his accession, says the contemporary historian Cassius Dio, the history of the Roman Empire descended from a kingdom of gold to one of iron and rust, as affairs did for the Romans of that day (LXXII.36.4).

By the latter years of his reign when this denarius was struck, Commodus believed Hercules was his divine patron, and he worshipped him so intensely that eventually he came to believe himself an incarnation of the mythological hero, thus reinforcing the image he was cultivating of himself as a demigod who, as the son of Jupiter, was the representative of the supreme god of the Roman pantheon. The growing megalomania of the emperor permeated all areas of Roman life, as is witnessed in the material record by the innumerable statues erected around the empire portraying him in the guise of Hercules (including the famous 'Commodus as Hercules' sculpture now located in the Capitoline Museums), and his coinage.

Estimate: 100 GBP

Match 2:
Leu Numismatik AG > Web Auction 28Auction date: 9 December 2023
Lot number: 3800

Price realized: 130 CHF   (Approx. 148 USD / 137 EUR)   Note: Prices do not include buyer's fees.
Lot description:


Commodus, 177-192. Denarius (Silver, 17 mm, 2.42 g, 12 h), Rome, 191-192. L AEL AVREL COMM AVG P FEL Head of Commodus to right, wearing lion skin headdress. Rev. HERCVL / ROMAN / AVGV Club; all within wreath. BMC 339. Cohen 190. RIC 251. Harshly cleaned and rough, otherwise, very fine.

Starting price: 25 CHF

Match 3:
Leu Numismatik AG > Web Auction 29Auction date: 24 February 2024
Lot number: 2127

Price realized: 300 CHF   (Approx. 341 USD / 315 EUR)   Note: Prices do not include buyer's fees.
Lot description:


Commodus, 177-192. Denarius (Silver, 16.9 mm, 2.12 g, 6 h), Rome, 191-192. L AEL AVREL COMM AVG P FEL Head of Commodus to right, wearing lion skin headdress. Rev. HERCVL / ROMAN / AVGV Club; all within wreath. BMC 339. Cohen 190. RIC 251. Somewhat porous, otherwise, very fine.

Starting price: 25 CHF

Match 4:
Savoca Numismatik GmbH & Co. KG > Online Auction 182 | SilverAuction date: 29 October 2023
Lot number: 210

Price realized: Unsold
Lot description:


Commodus AD 177-192. Rome
Denarius AR

18 mm, 2,74 g

L AEL AVREL COMM AVG P FEL, laureate head right / P M TR P XVII IMP VIII COS VII P P, Pietas seated left, extending right hand to a child and holding a transverse sceptre, a star in field.

Very Fine

RIC 236; C 575.

Commodus, also known as Lucius Aurelius Commodus, was a Roman emperor who ruled from AD 177 to 192. He was the son of Emperor Marcus Aurelius and became co-emperor with his father in AD 177 before succeeding him as the sole ruler upon Marcus Aurelius' death in AD 180.
Commodus' reign was marked by extravagance, mismanagement, and authoritarian rule. He is famously depicted as a cruel and erratic ruler in historical accounts, including the film "Gladiator," where he is portrayed as a power-hungry and unstable emperor.
During his rule, Commodus indulged in lavish spending, engaged in gladiatorial combats, and saw himself as a god-like figure. His autocratic and erratic behavior led to unrest and dissatisfaction among the Roman people, and his reign ultimately ended with assassination in AD 192.
Commodus' tumultuous rule remains a significant and intriguing part of Roman history, and his actions had lasting consequences for the Roman Empire.



Starting price: 50 EUR

Match 5:
Leu Numismatik AG > Web Auction 29Auction date: 24 February 2024
Lot number: 2128

Price realized: 300 CHF   (Approx. 341 USD / 315 EUR)   Note: Prices do not include buyer's fees.
Lot description:


Commodus, 177-192. Sestertius (Orichalcum, 29 mm, 22.39 g, 12 h), Rome, end of 191-192. L AEL AVREL COMM AVG P FEL Head of Commodus, as Hercules, to right, wearing lion skin headdress. Rev. HER-CVL / ROM-ANO / AV-GV / S - C in four lines across field divided by upright club; all within wreath. BMC 713. Cohen 194. RIC 638. Scuff marks on the obverse, otherwise, very fine.


From The Friedrich Collection, Numismatica Ars Classica, 2 April 1995, 1568.

Starting price: 75 CHF