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Buying and Collecting Ancient Coins: A Beginner's Guide

'Collecting ancient coins is a fascinating hobby that combines history, art, and the closest feeling one can experience to time travel. '

Collecting ancient coins is a fascinating hobby that combines history, art, and the closest feeling one can experience to time travel. These coins provide an unrivalled insight into ancient history, and the feeling of holding a physical item which transports you back in time by two thousand years is something which no collector can forget. If you’re curious about where to start with collecting ancient coins, this guide will help you get started on your journey as a collector.




Getting Started

  • Define Your Focus:

The ancient world is unbelievably broad - here at The Coin Cabinet we define ‘ancient’ with respect to coins as any fungible struck item from the period around where the first coins were struck in 650BC to the end of the Byzantine empire signified by the fall of Constantinople in 1453. That’s a time period of over two thousand years, so it’s good to decide on a period that you’d like to start collecting - this will help you greatly as you build your collection!

Some of the most accessible coins to get started with are late Roman Nummi - these are some of the most common ancient coins in existence and generally sell for the lowest prices. Elsewhere, collecting coins of a single Roman emperor, or those struck featuring the portrait of Alexander the Great, can prove a great starting focal point for any budding collector.

  • Educate Yourself:

There are plenty of online and offline resources for learning more about ancient coins. If you’re signed up to our mailing list at The Coin Cabinet, you’ll receive weekly highlights emails with information about the coins we have available and why they’re historically important. Our team are always willing to answer any questions you may have about any of the coins in our auctions!

Online communities such as Numisforums can also be a great place to learn about the basics of coin collecting and to show off your latest acquisitions!


Buying coins with The Coin Cabinet

Auctions are a fantastic way to start collecting, as they present the widest range of coins available to you and often at lower prices than when buying at retail stores. Here’s what makes The Coin Cabinet’s auctions great for getting started with buying ancient coins:

  • A wide range of coins available at every price point

At The Coin Cabinet, we ensure that our auctions have something for everyone. This means having both rare and more accessible coins available for purchase at auction, so that there’s something for every bidder.

  • Low fees and a transparent auction process

We keep our buyers’ fees as low as possible, and lower or equal to than nearly every major auction house worldwide. Our shipping, through a courier or tracked domestic mail service, is efficient and hassle-free, and we fully insure every package from the moment it leaves our office to the point of delivery.

  • High quality photography and cataloguing

Good, honest photography is the backbone of every online auction; through meticulous camera work, we ensure that our images match the lots as they look in-hand as closely as possible. We always offer high-definition videos of lots by request should you wish to see any further details, while our cataloguing team have decades of experience working with coins between them, and ensure that each description is accurately referenced.

  • A guarantee of authenticity

As an IAPN member, The Coin Cabinet guarantees the authenticity of every coin sold at auction. We check every auction we produce thoroughly to remove any coins we suspect to be inauthentic, and always describe any smoothing, tooling or other alterations where they are apparent.

In short, collecting ancient coins is a rewarding hobby that offers endless opportunities for learning and discovery. By defining your focus, educating yourself, and connecting with us, you can build a valuable and enjoyable collection. Happy collecting!