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The standard reference work for Roman Imperial coinage of Hadrian now occupies a fully revised and greatly expanded standalone volume to cover the last epoch of what many consider the apogee of Roman coinage – begun with Nero’s reform of AD 64 when great effort was taken over their iconographic designs. It is also a long overdue attempt to reconcile our increased 21st century understanding of this otherwise lightly-documented reign of one of the key figures in Roman history. The rich symbolism of the reign is also expressed in prodigious issues of Hadrian’s medallic pieces, many covered in RIC for the first time.
Richard Abdy has been a curator of Roman coins at the British Museum for many years, with particular interest in the middle and later imperial periods of the Roman Empire. He has had long experience of recording Roman coin hoards through work on Treasure cases in England. Since his university research for a corpus of the coinage from the Antonine Wall (dominated by Hadrianic material due the dynamics of coin circulation), the lack of a recent – or even post-war – typological reference for the coinage of Hadrian, AD 117 to AD 138, has been evident to him.
Peter Mittag, Professor für Alte Geschichte at Cologne University, has already published a corpus of the medallions of Hadrian and presents his research in English for the first time.