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EGYPT, Alexandria.  Octavian

80 drachmae, Series One, struck 30-27 BCE

Obv:  bare head right

Rev:  [KAIΣAPOΣAYTOKPATOPOΣ]; eagle standing left on thunderbolt, cornucopiae before; Π in right field

Ref:  Emmett 1


Translation of legend abbreviations:


Caesar Imperator (genitive case)

Yeah, I know... this is one hideous coin.


They're fairly tough to find though and I lost the few recent examples at auction.  This ugly duckling is welcome in my collection, at least until a better example comes along.


"The first coinage of the new province of Egypt was a direct copy of the bronze coinage of Cleopatra, the last Ptolemaic ruler, with the portrait of Augustus replacing the Queen’s. Egypt, wealthy and a vital source of grain for the empire, was never to be allowed as a potential leaping-off point for a rival emperor. The new province was held under tight control by the emperor. Its governor was to be an equestrian prefect answerable to Augustus, with a legion under his direct command. The Senate would have no say in the administration of the province, and in fact senators were forbidden to travel there without permission." -- from a similar coin in CNG's archives.


Emmett and others cite this coin as an issue of Augustus but I don't know why.  They were struck before Octavian became titled Augustus, so I'm using the Octavian label.

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