2012 | 16 | 167-182
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Propaganda war over Sicily? Sicily in the Roman coinage during the civil war 49-45 BC

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Sicily seemed not to play an important role during the civil war between Caesar and Pompey the Great. Despite downplaying the importance of the island in the historical narratives concerning the conflict motifs referring to Sicily were placed on some of the coins struck in the period (Crawford 1974, nos 439, 445/1 and 457). Usually they were interpreted as a part of ancestral propaganda (Crawford 1974, nos 439 and 445/1) or as a means of emphasizing the moneyer’s status in order to promote himself (Crawford 1974, No. 457). This article approaches the problem of interpretation of the coinage in question from another perspective. By placing this issue in the historical context in which they were minted this paper tries to show that in fact the coins were meant for the Sicilians in the first place. Therefore the Sicilians are seen as the preferred recipients of propaganda messages transmitted via these coins in order to win them to the moneyer’s cause. Since the coins referring to Sicily were minted by both sides of the conflict they may be seen as a part of a propaganda war over Sicily.
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