“Et Tu Brute” Coin … And Money From Deepest Known Wreck Site


A gold stater struck by Brutus, one of Julius Caesar’s infamous assassins, together with two Spanish pieces-of-eight recovered from the world’s deepest known wreck site, are among more than 250 coin lots in Time Line Auction’s London sale scheduled for Friday, March 18th at the prestigious Swedenborg Hall, Bloomsbury, just around the corner from the British Museum.

Brutus - Caesar's Assassin Gold Stater
'Et Tu Brute' Coin: Mid 1st century BC, Koson, Thrace. Obv: KOSWN (in exergue), Roman consul, Brutus, in center, standing left, accompanied by two lictors, each with sceptres or baton over shoulder. Rev: no legend, eagle standing left on sceptre, wings open, raising wreath in left foot.

Brutus issued the stater, which depicts him standing with two of his officers, when he was Roman consul in Thrace in the mid-1st century BC. The reverse shows an eagle holding a wreath in its clawed foot.

The silver pieces-of-eight came to light during a search in 1992 for the US space capsule, Liberty Bell 7, which sank in a sea test during which space pilot Gus Grissom almost died.

An unidentified anomaly at a depth of 16,300 feet turned out not to be the space capsule but a wooden sailing ship. Exploring the wreckage with a robot arm, salvors discovered a chest containing more than 1300 pieces-of-eight and a small ornate box containing gold coins that had been wrapped in a newspaper dated August 6, 1809.

You can bid on some of these fascinating coin lots and browse the complete catalog now at www.timelineauctions.com.

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Koichi Ito

How did Ancient Roman Gold Coin end up in Spanish Ship Wreck with Silver Piece of Eight, and Gold Eight Escudos? It could be a coin collector was on that ship? Or using this coin as money?