Roman Empire, Domitia - Juno and the Peacock

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Together with Jupiter and Minerva, the goddess Juno was worshipped in Rome as part of Capitoline Triad of supreme deities. The peacock seen on the reverse of this rare and attractive denarius was often depicted as a symbol of Juno, signifying her watchful and warlike countenance.

That the peacock was specifically linked to Juno is affirmed by Ovid in his Metamorphoses, Book 1, where he relates that after Jupiter was caught with his lover Io, she was turned into a pure white heifer by his enraged wife Juno. Set under the guard of Argus, the hundred-eyed watchman, Io was rescued by Hermes, who had been sent by Jupiter to free her. Juno transfered the eyes from the body of Argus to the tail feathers of the peacock after he had been killed by Hermes.

Domitia AR Denarius. Rome, AD 81-84. DOMITIA AVGVSTA IMP DOMIT, draped bust right, hair falling in long plait behind neck / CONCORDIA AVGVST, peacock standing to right on ground line. C. 2; BMC 61 (Domitian); RIC 151 (Domitian); CBN 65. 3.57g, 19mm, 5h.

About Extremely Fine. Very Rare.

Ex Barry Feirstein Collection, Numismatica Ars Classica 39, 16 May 2007, lot 115;
Ex James Fox Collection, CNG 40, 4 December 1996, lot 1465;
Ex Nelson Bunker Hunt Collection, Sotheby's 21 June 1990, lot 713; 
Ex Leu 28, 5 May 1981, lot 422.