Denarius, 82 BC, Rome mint. C. Mamilius Limetanus.




The return of Ulysses



Roman Republic. C. Mamilius Limetanus. Denarius, 82 BC, Rome mint.
Obverse: Draped bust of Mercury, wearing winged petasus, right, in the left field I and caduceus.
Reverse: Ulysses, wearing pileus and mariner’s dress, standing right, leaning on staff in left hand and extending his right hand, in front of him Argus, who advances toward Ulysses, in the left field C MAMIL, in the right field LIMETAN (ligated).
Dimensions: AR, 3.75 g, 20 mm, 7h.
References: Crawford 362/1;
Sydenham 741;
BMCRR Rome 2722.
Condition: Beautifully toned example with minor area of weakness. Otherwise extremely fine.
Provenance: From a private German Collection,
acquired at Kölner Münzkabinett 109 (2018), 332,
ex Collection Prof. Dr. Hildebrecht Hommel (1899-1996).
Comment: The Tusculan gens Mamilia claimed to be descendants from Telegonus, son of Ulysses and Circe, who founded Tusculum. Ulysses was a great-grandson of Mercury, or Greek Hermes. With this coin the moneyer refers to his divine ancestor and at the same his families’ origin. On the reverse Ulysses is depicted arriving home after his wanderings and being welcomed by his dog Argos, this representation was also used on other medium and expressed confidence and loyalty.

The moneyer
C. Mamilius Limetanus – He was a republican moneyer and presumably a son of C. Mamilius Limetanus, who was Tribune of the Plebs in 109 BC.

Additional information


AR (silver)


3.75 g


20 mm

Die axis

7 h