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4.3 out of 5 stars
4.3 out of 5 stars
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on 23 August 2012
forget the price guide this is one of the best little books for id purpose out there, this and its sister roman base metal coins, there are relivent line drawings throughout, this helps put your coin in thier proper order, and explains in easy to digest format, how to id your coins, and put those qestions to rights, buy this and your on your way to a fantastic adventure. we need more books like this out there.
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on 13 June 2015
It is often said that you get what you pay for; and only the richest or most foolish people want to pay a very high price unnecessarily.
In this case, you can cover all Roman base metal and silver coins for less than £10 with Kindle, or a little more on paper (which is probably the more convenient option for these two books). Whereas the complete set of David Sear’s “Roman Coins and their Values” would cost you well over £200 and take up a lot of space on your shelf ! Think about it.

Obviously there is a lot more information in Sears, but a lot of it is about individual coins which you will never own. This book deals with a range of silver coins (more than 850 of them) which provides you with excellent information on what sort of stuff is out there. In the case of the sister book on base metal coins it has been suggested (rather unfairly) that reverses have been neglected, but this is certainly not true for the silver coins, with their more varied range of reverses. A range of reverses and obverses is illustrated for every emperor (etc). Furthermore, one must not overlook the appendix “Extra notes by coin number” on pages 84 to 92. If you are intrigued by a reverse, such as the apparent wedding cake on a coin of Caracalla and Geta (valued at £30), just look up CRS537 and you find “Funeral pyre of four tiers with a quadriga on top”. Diocletian’s CRS725 (valued at £200) looks like four men in front of a gasometer, but it turns out to be “The four tetrarchs (Diocletian, Maximianus, Constantius, and Galerius) sacrifice over a tripod outside a city gate”. This is all you could expect to find out -- in fact, Sear calls it merely “The four tetrarchs sacrificing”, thus not identifying the gasometer. But Sear’s description of the wedding cake is probably longer than you require: “Pyramidal crematorium of five storeys with garlanded base, the door on second level, the apex surmounted by emperor in quadriga facing”. (To make if 5 storeys he has included the base, which Plant has not). If a coin number is not listed in Plant’s appendix, it is a common reverse familiar from earlier coins.

Despite the assumed superiority of photography, there is a lot to be said for the traditional art of drawing coins by hand, an art of which Plant must be amongst the last great exponents. In earlier editions of “Roman Coins and their Values”, Sear used a combination of both --- in 1964, the eight pages of photographs (about 240 coins) are described as “new”, but he continues to use drawings in the text, “far more numerous than in previous editions”. It seems to me that if you want to choose a coin from a catalogue (or on eBay) and then buy it, a photograph is better, but if you own a coin, a drawing is a better way to identify it, and Plant’s drawings are not only charming but meticulous. The feeling of depth and shine given by a photograph is of no use, but it is very valuable to read the inscription easily and to make out other details in a good drawing. Perhaps you are better off with both, but that is going to cost you a lot more than £5 . Unbeatable value !
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on 11 June 2013
No photographs !! the ilustrations are pretty ameteurish as well although i can see fine detail would be distracting/not neccessary but sometimes you cannot definitely match a coin on e bay with the illustration. Also many roman coins on e bay do not appear here !!! Another gripe is no sizes are given, on the positive side there is an alphabetical index of emporers with a number (s) for easy finding. a no frills book.
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on 5 January 2014
If, like me, you are new to Roman coin collection I would strongly recommend this book to help you understand the types and indicative value of coins.
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on 16 December 2015
I thought I was buying a book on Roman coins not silver coins so was disappointed,I did not realise the prices given were 4 years out of date.
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on 24 April 2014
Good reference for identifying coins. Has clear line drawings rather than photographs which makes this perfect to read on kindle.
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on 19 November 2014
Great book, will be very useful for my stepson who loves anything about Roman coins
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on 22 February 2016
Excellent starter guide for the complete novice like me!
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on 17 August 2015
just as described, I would recommend
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on 9 June 2016
Good for ID coin metal detecting
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