The collection of Roman Republican coins in the Classics Department of Lawrence University began with 55 coins. With only a few exceptions, the provenance of the collection is unknown. Coin #4, the bronze as of Publius Cornelius Sulla, was excavated on the Esquiline hill in 1905. Coin #32, the denarius with Hercules strangling the Nemean Lion on the reverse, was donated by George Banta, presumably by George R. Banta, Jr., a Lawrentian of the class of 1910. The exact date that the Classics department came into possession of the collection is also unknown. The terminus ante quem must be 1927-28 when four coins from the collection were reported stolen. Whoever purchased the collection chose a unique variety of coins which spans the period from the striking of one of the first silver coins of Rome to the early denarii of Augustus. The coins chosen could not be a simple random sampling of Roman Republican coinage. The designer of the collection took great effort to ensure the representation of important mythological figures, prominent magistrates and Roman families, depictions of historical events, and both silver and bronze coins. The result was a wide variety of coin types to be studied by students of Classics, Art History, History, or any other major.
Level of Honors
magna cum laude
Wendel, Bradford W., "A Catalogue of the 51 Roman Republican Coins in the Collection of the Lawrence University Classics Department" (1996). Lawrence University Honors Projects. 69.