Ancient Warfare Magazine

Ancient Warfare Magazine

Bonus Content: “Victoria Navalis” Bibliography

A corroded copper-alloy coin with a Roman emperor's profile on one side and the goddess Victoria standing on a ship's prow on the other

A coin of Vespasian with the legend VICTORIA NAVALIS S C, courtesy of Classical Numismatic Group, Electronic Auction 340, Lot 333, via coinarchives.com

In my recent Ancient Warfare article I mentioned that scholars are divided on how to interpret the legend VICTORIA NAVALIS on Roman coins. Some link it with a battle between Romans and Jews in the Sea of Galilee, some with the centenary of Augustus’ victory over the fleet of Antony and Cleopatra, and some with the Roman civil wars of 69 CE. Since I am not an expert on numismatics or Roman Judaea I wanted to get a wide range of opinions. Search engines make it easier to find brief mentions in footnotes and sidebars than it once was, but finding and sorting still takes effort. Here are some scholars who have stated what they think the legend refers to:

Read more