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Forgery Alerts Reports and discussion regarding possible forgeries.

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Old Aug 12, 2009, 07:29 AM   #1
BeastCoins
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"Hoard" of LRB from Eastern Serbia

Folks,

Although I'm still kind of smarting from starting my thread last week about fake coins, I'm going to just back into the ring again this week and put up this topic for discussion.

Dr. Lars Ramskold, a friend who is an extremely advanced Late Roman Bronze collector and researcher, sent an email to a few of us who collect and deal in LRB. This email was to notify us of a "hoard" of LRB "found a few kilometres to the south of town Smederova in a depth of three metres. Since thereís no oxygen in this depth, no harmful corrosion could occur. Thatís the reason why all coins - as usual for hoard coins - have an extremely fine, perfect condition. Every coin is extremely fine !" This "hoard" is for sale here:

http://www.sacra-moneta.de:80/LateRoman-Hoard.htm

Once again, and only working with photos, I suspect all of the pieces in the following photos of this "hoard" are all modern fakes.





The offer describing the "hoard" on the website states:

"Since this is a hoard, there are only quite a few coin types. There are twelve different coin types, five in large numbers and five in small numbers. The following emperors are present: Constantine I. the Great, Constantine II. Junior, Constans and Delmatius. "

Although it is possible for a hoard to contain numerous die links, this particular "hoard" contains 14 pieces from the same dies (there are actually more in this photo, however Dr. Ramskold only circled enough to make it how obvious and rampant it is)



Getting to the point and trying to explain why I feel every piece is fake even though I'm only looking at a photo:
  • The patinas all look unnatural
  • The flan shapes and surfaces all look modern (edges too sharp, fields too flat and lifeless)
  • The assertion by the seller about "since thereís no oxygen in this depth, no harmful corrosion could occur." Wow. I don't even have a response for that one.

So, that's it for me. I'm always open to be proven completely wrong so I can continue to learn on my journey.

Respectfully,

--Zach Beasley
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Old Aug 12, 2009, 12:42 PM   #2
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Maybe just coincidence, but looks like this hoard has a number of the types in common with another hoard posted on FORVM: http://www.forumancientcoins.com/boa...ic=55135.0;all

I haven't tried to check whether they are from the same dies yet

Regards

Allan
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Old Aug 12, 2009, 12:54 PM   #3
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The coins mentioned in the FORVM post are the same type, same mint, and most likely same dies for the following types: Dafne, Campgate, both Fel Temps, the Gloria Exercitvs and Fel Temp; it also includes some ants, one of which I can see in this hoard also ... coincidence is getting stronger ...
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Old Aug 12, 2009, 01:03 PM   #4
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Agreed. Just looked at the Forvm thread and they do all appear to be the same pieces. I guess we will be seeing these in the wild as individual examples in eBay auctions in the near future by anyone who was fooled into buying them for resale. Keep your eyes open.

--Beast
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Old Aug 12, 2009, 01:13 PM   #5
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Isn't 'sacra moneta' connected to that well-known Swiss fake seller?
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Old Aug 12, 2009, 02:37 PM   #6
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Unless the hoard was subsequently reburied under a landslide or something, three metres seems awfully deep for a hoard.

Richard
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Old Aug 12, 2009, 07:07 PM   #7
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observation

Please correct me, but I noticed that many of the coins have raised rounded spots on them. I have read that these are signs of casting. Is this a correct observation?

Thanks,

Paul
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Old Aug 12, 2009, 07:22 PM   #8
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Another observation

Just another thought. It states that these coins were found burried at a depth of 3 meters, which is about 9 feet. Having taken and taught a number of earth science courses as well as chemistry, I found it quite puzzling that oxygen dissolved in water could not find its way only nine feet underground. Surface water that is rich in dissolved oxygen will easily move through nine feet of soil.

Paul
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Old Aug 12, 2009, 07:27 PM   #9
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How come "About 90% of all coins were struck in the period of time of 335-350 AD. So, we can come to the conclusion that the hoard was buried in the year 350 AD approximately " and yet there aren't any coins from Constantius II?? In fact, of the four rulers listed, Constantius was the only one who was actually alive in 350 (Constans surviving until 350 or so).
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Old Aug 13, 2009, 06:34 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RobertB View Post
How come "About 90% of all coins were struck in the period of time of 335-350 AD. So, we can come to the conclusion that the hoard was buried in the year 350 AD approximately " and yet there aren't any coins from Constantius II?? In fact, of the four rulers listed, Constantius was the only one who was actually alive in 350 (Constans surviving until 350 or so).
Not only buried c.350 but also contains some aEF Probus antoniniani? Um, no. It's not like Probus ants circulated as long as Marc Antony denarii (and even moreso that they stayed in "as-struck condition")....
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Old Aug 13, 2009, 06:36 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by paul1888 View Post
Please correct me, but I noticed that many of the coins have raised rounded spots on them. I have read that these are signs of casting. Is this a correct observation?

Thanks,

Paul
Paul,

Sometimes called "casting pimples", but I don't really see good evidence of that in these photos. I think these might be die pressed instead of cast, but I'm not 100% sure.

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Old Aug 13, 2009, 06:39 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by paul1888 View Post
Just another thought. It states that these coins were found burried at a depth of 3 meters, which is about 9 feet. Having taken and taught a number of earth science courses as well as chemistry, I found it quite puzzling that oxygen dissolved in water could not find its way only nine feet underground. Surface water that is rich in dissolved oxygen will easily move through nine feet of soil.

Paul
If three meters of soil were a good preserver of metals, I don't think we would see so much corrosion and patina on base-metal flans or crystalization of billon flans from ground finds...

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Old Aug 13, 2009, 05:11 PM   #13
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Thanks. I agree. I was trying to say was that I would also find it hard to believe that oxidation would not occur at a depth of only 9 feet. Also, is there clues to help identify modern die stamped coins? These are the coins that worry me the most, since it seems like even the proffessionals, such as yourself, are always trying to keep one step ahead of the criminals.

Thanks,

Paul
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Old Aug 14, 2009, 04:18 AM   #14
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They are probably from the same folks that created this "Hoard" of Probus, Carus etc.

http://www.forumancientcoins.com/boa...?topic=53852.0

Martin
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Old Aug 14, 2009, 12:50 PM   #15
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Quote:
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They are probably from the same folks that created this "Hoard" of Probus, Carus etc.

http://www.forumancientcoins.com/boa...?topic=53852.0

Martin
Yes, and contains some of the same Probus pieces as well. Must have been leftovers they threw in when changing over to the new AE3 dies. Doggone sloppy shift-changes - they really should keep their production runs limited to the same century....

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