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Ex nummis historia. Szkice o obrazach numizmatycznych w badaniach nad dziejami starożytnego Rzymu
Ex nummis historia

Sketches on numismatic images in the studies of the history of ancient Rome

Author(s): Agata A. Kluczek
Subject(s): History, Archaeology, History of ideas, Local History / Microhistory, Political history, Ancient World
Published by: Wydawnictwo Uniwersytetu Śląskiego
Keywords: Ideological aspect of the Roman coinage; Roman emperor; Imperium Romanum; iconography of coins; Roman ancient coin; medallion
Summary/Abstract: Ex nummis historia… is a study which, while recognising the communicative and ideological importance of coins and medallions in the socio-political life of the Roman Empire, presents the potential of numismatic sources for uncovering the history of ancient Rome. Above all, numismatic artefacts have the unique characteristic of their inherent element of actuality. They are both a part of the ancient world and its “witness.” They document the life of specific communities that used them, as well as the authorities and elites that produced them. Therefore, they provide knowledge about the reality in which they functioned and which they reported in their own way. After all, the images and inscriptions placed on numismats were connected with the state, the authorities, and more broadly with society and its elites. They are unencumbered by any interpretation other than that resulting from the actions of the issuers, who transformed a perceived and important for them piece of ancient reality into these images and slogans. Such documentary freshness is preserved even in those numismats which bear images or inscriptions already used earlier and elsewhere. This wandering of motifs in time or space suggests an appreciation of a given theme, which changed its value and acquired a new meaning, being reborn either in a different period, place or environment. The significant role of coins and medallions — as tools of socio-political communication, carriers of ideological content and documents preserving information about the Roman Empire and its inhabitants encoded in a specific way — results from the great value of numismatic sources in modern historical analyses of Roman history. The publication focuses on the nummographic field of coins and medallions, i.e. that relating to information given in inscriptions and iconography placed on numismats. It omits their unquestionable value in the study of Roman economics and the nummometric plane concerning various measurements of monetary issues and specific numismats. The book discusses, primo, the way in which Roman coin and medallion issuers transmitted into numismatic imagery elements of the reality around them and the tradition they recognized, and the formulas, especially the iconographic ones, to which they resorted when characterizing values, events and figures important to them. Secundo, methods are presented which may help to read the ideological content of numismats and use them to deepen the knowledge of Roman political, social, and cultural history.

  • E-ISBN-13: 978-83-226-4027-2
  • Print-ISBN-13: 978-83-226-4026-5
  • Page Count: 338
  • Publication Year: 2021
  • Language: Polish