A History of Ancient Rome in Twelve Coins


The extraordinary story of ancient Rome, history's greatest superpower, as told through humankind's most universal object: the coin.

CONN IGGULDEN, author of Nero
'Brilliant' EMMA SOUTHON, author of A History of the Roman Empire in 21 Woman
'Wonderful' CHRISTOPHER HADLEY, author of The Road

Moneta traces ancient Rome’s unstoppable rise, from a few huts on an Italian hilltop to an all-conquering empire spanning three continents, through the fascinating lives of twelve remarkable coins. In these handcrafted pieces of ancient art we witness Caesar's bloody assassination, follow the legions to the edge of the known world, take a seat in the packed Colosseum, and ultimately, watch as barbarian armies mass at the gates.

The Romans saw coins as far more than just money – these were metal canvases on which they immortalised their sacred gods, mighty emperors, towering monuments, and brutal battles of conquest. Revealed in those intricate designs struck in gold, silver, and bronze was the epic history of the Roman world.

Hold the glory and the infamy of ancient Rome in the palm of your hand.


  • A novel and highly readable approach to Roman history. The author's enthusiasm shines through on every page
    PHILIP MATYSZAK, author of A History of Ancient Rome in 100 Lives

About the author

Gareth Harney

Gareth Harney is a historian and coin collector striving to bring the wonders of the ancient world to a wider audience. For two decades he has explored the ruins of the Roman Empire, from the rugged landscapes of Hadrian’s Wall to the desert sands of the Sahara, all the while celebrating every aspect of ancient Rome with his large online following. Tweeting @OptimoPrincipi he combines rigorous historical research with thrilling storytelling to make classical history vital and relatable. Having built his own ancient coin collection since childhood, he now uses his website, blog, and high-definition coin photography to promote the joys of the hobby to a whole new generation.
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