As the Poole Hoard, Treasure case 2016 T325, undergoes conservation at the British Museum some issues have been coming to light. Soft patches of copper alloy due to the corrosive soil conditions have resulted in pitting on some coins. Here you can see that Roma has lost her nose and Licinius II is having difficulties with his vision!
On the flip side (literally) the reverse of this Licinius II coin has very good preservation in places, with the folds in the captives’ trousers, the ties binding the right hand figure and other details visible. Much of the detail on the coins from the Poole Hoard survives however active care is being taken by the British Museum’s conservators in order to ensure that it is not lost.
Investigating the Poole hoard and seeing lots of different coins of the same type at once gives us the opportunity to study the changing faces. Here we have two coins of Crispus both wearing laureate crowns with neat short hair but facing different directions. In one Crispus holds a shield while on the other coin the emperor’s cuirass is clearly visible.
Easy to spot changes on coins bearing female busts, are changes in hair style. Here we have two similar styles displaying subtle changes in fashion. As well as their monetary use coins were also were used as political propaganda conveying a message in a quick and visible form to the people from their rulers. Likewise fashion such as the hairstyles chosen for the coins would have influenced the fashion of the day.