TWO BRONZE PRUTAH OF PONTIUS PILATE WITH SIMPULUM IN SILVER EARRINGS
Catalog:Coins:Roman: stock #1288189
Pontius Pilate as Procurator of Judaea under Tiberius (26-36 CE)
Minted Year 16 (29 CE)
Obverse: Three bound ears of barley surrounded by IOVLIAC KAICAPOC.
Reverse: Simpulum surrounded by TIBERIOY KAICAPOC LIV.
Coins in fine condition, set in modern sterling silver earrings.
3.3 x 1.8 cm (1.29 x .70 inches) Weight: 7.4 g
SNG ANS 367
Like many other rulers of Judea, Pontius Pilate restrained from the use of portraiture on his coinage. However, this did not stop him from including pagan symbols on them. In this example a simpulum is present on the coin's reverse. A simpulum is a ladle used by Roman priests to perform libations and was also a symbol of the Roman priesthood. Its inclusion on the coin sent a clear message as to the sensibilities of its issuer. This is fitting with what we know of Pilate as a procurator who tried to walk the line between the primarily Jewish population which he ruled and the Roman elite who had installed him.