Printed Auction 36 Lot 111

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Rare Title - Nobilissima Femina

Printed Auction 36 Lot 111

Helena (mother of Constantine the Great). As Nobilissima Femina, A.D. 306-324. Æ follis. 2.96 gm. 19 mm. Thessalonica mint. Struck circa A.D. 318-319. Her draped bust right, hair in bun behind; HELENA N F / Laurel wreath enclosing star of eight rays, no legend, no mint mark. RIC VII 50. Good Extremely Fine; beautiful smooth patina with traces of original silvering, very rare thus; hairline striking crack at 6'. Very Rare. And the best example we have been able to trace.

Ex Helios Auction 6 (9 March 2011), lot 237.

Includes David Sear certificate of authenticity and historical notes: "Flavia Julia Helena began her career as a barmaid in Naissus (Moesia)." She promoted the Christian Church, was involved in the disgrace and execution of the Empress Fausta, journeyed on pilgrimage to the Holy Land and there founded many great basilicas, and was canonized after her death.

N F in the obverse legend stands for Nobilissima Femina, a rare and unusual title to appear on her coins, referencing her status prior to her elevation to Augusta in A.D. 324.

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