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Tetradrachm (Coin) Portraying Emperor Nero

A work made of billon.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of billon.




Roman, minted in Alexandria, Egypt

About this artwork

The front (obverse) of this coin portrays the head of Emperor Nero, facing right, and radiate. The back (reverse) portrays the bust of Poppaea (second wife of Nero, who was her third husband), facing right. The back includes the date of minting, ” L IA”, which is the eleventh year of his rule as emperor, or 64-65 CE. Nero reigned from 54-68 CE.

Poppaea and Nero married in 62 CE. Coins such as this tetradrachm were struck to advertise the new imperial couple. Both portraits convey a sense of confidence and determination.


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Arts of the Ancient Mediterranean and Byzantium


Ancient Egyptian


Tetradrachm (Coin) Portraying Emperor Nero


Egypt (Artist's nationality:)

Date  Dates are not always precisely known, but the Art Institute strives to present this information as consistently and legibly as possible. Dates may be represented as a range that spans decades, centuries, dynasties, or periods and may include qualifiers such as c. (circa) or BCE.

64 CE–65 CE




Obverse: ΝΕΡΩ ΛΚΑΥ ΚΑΙΣ ΣΕΒ ΓΕΡ ΑV "Neron Klaudios Kaisar Sebastos Germanikos Autokrator" (Nero Claudius Cesar August Germanicus Emperor) Reverse: ΠOΠΠAIA ΣEBAΣTH, L IA (date = year 11, or 64-65 CE) "Poppaia Sebaste" (Poppaea Augusta)


Diam.: 2.6 cm (1 1/16 in.)

Credit Line

Gift of Robert L. Grover

Reference Number


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Extended information about this artwork

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