Coins and Communication

Carlos F. Noreña

in The Oxford Handbook of Social Relations in the Roman World

Published in print February 2011 | ISBN: 9780195188004
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Classics and Ancient History

 Coins and Communication

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  • Classical Studies
  • Greek and Roman Archaeology
  • Historical Archaeology


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This article studies how Roman coinage served as a communication medium in the Roman world. The term “Roman coinage” refers to all coins that were minted in areas under the administrative control of the Roman Empire. It notes the two features that distinguished ancient coins from other types of money, namely their adherence to a standard, and the fact that they had designs that indicated a minting authority. The article also looks at the coinages produced under the authority of the central state, and those produced under the local authority in the Roman provinces. These coinages were called the “Roman imperial coinage” and the “Roman provincial coinage”.

Keywords: coinage; communication medium; ancient coins; minting authority; Roman imperial coinage; Roman provincial coinage

Article.  8175 words. 

Subjects: Classical Studies ; Greek and Roman Archaeology ; Historical Archaeology

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