Trajan, AR denarius, (3.69g)
Obv: IMP TRAIANO AVG GER DAC P M TR P COS
V P P Laureate bust right, drapery on far shoulder
Rev: S P Q R
OPTIMO PRI; Via Trajana reclining left, holding wheel, head
turned, VIA TRAIANA in exergue.
Struck 114-117 CE; Reference - reference - RIC II 266.
Feats of engineering and architecture are depicted on Roman coins and are a favorite among collectors. Arches, aqueducts, buildings, bridges and even roads make their way onto Roman coins. The saying, "All roads lead to Rome" was pretty much true as the Romans ended up with a system containing over 53,000 miles of Roads. Fourteen different viae radiated from Rome. This Trajan denarius commemorates the constuction of the Via traiana, an extension of the Appian Way in southern Italy. The depiction of the personification of the highway is reminiscient of the art nouveau posters of the 20s and 30s advertising motor cars. The Via Traiana connected 3 major towns on the Adriatic to the Via Appia for direct access to Rome. For more information on Roman coins with architectural and engineering reverses, obtain a Copy of Monumental Coins by Marvin Tameanko - Krause Publishing. A great read and beautifully illustrated. This coffee table-sized book is now selling for under $10!
For an internet site on Roman Road construction, visit Adam Pawluk's site.
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