Becker restrike: Aureus of Hostilian

Becker restrike: Aureus of Hostilian

Becker restrike: Aureus of Hostilian

Period: Neoclassicism

Country: Germany

Ruler: Hostilian

Denomination: Aureus

Weight: 4.54 g

Quality: FDC

Auction house: Leu Numismatik

Date: 18 June 2017

Starting price: 50 CHF

Historical context

Carl Wilhem Becker is the most famous ancient coin forger of all times. He manually engraved dies to produced more than 300 different reproductions of Roman and Greek coins. Some of these coins, as the one that is now in the auction, were struck in tin or white metal, so they are obviously different from ancient coins. However, other coins were produced with copper, silver or gold blanks, or even using cheap old ancient coins as blanks. Hence, it is for me clear that Becker tried to cheat dealers at the beginning of XIXth Century, although some authors still doubt about his intentions.

Nowadays Becker restrikes are very well known. The dies he produced have been studied and his coins are very well documented. Any ancient coin dealer should be knowledgeable in telling the difference between a Becker restrike and an original ancient coin. In fact, it is very easy to find information about Becker restrikes on-line: one,two, three, four, and five.

Market

There have always been collectors of Becker restrikes. However, in the last decades, many collectors lost their interests on Becker restrikes and the prices are much lower than they used to. I do not think that these restrikes represent a good investment.
Regarding their price, it is easy to find price references. It can easily be seen that the hammer price for the Becker restrikes in tin or white metal range between $60 and $200.

Description from the seller

BECKER RESTRIKES. Dies by Carl Wilhelm Becker (1772-1830). Aureus (Tin, 20 mm, 4.54 g, 2 h), restrike of Hostilian, 251. C VALENS HOSTIL MES QVINTVS N C Bare-headed, draped and cuirassed bust of Hostilian to right. Rev. PRINCIPI IVVENTVTIS Prince standing left, holding standard in right hand and spear in left. Becker 210. FDC.

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