FOREIGN, ANCIENT, & MEDIEVAL COINS & COLLECTIBLES
BOUGHT, SOLD, APPRAISED , & ATTRIBUTED SINCE 1981
(845) 434-6090; FAX (845) 434-6079, in Connecticut (203) 374-6986
Curious inquiries always welcome
The Excitement of History
There are few civilized societies over the past 2,000 years which have not left us coins, or some similar means of exchange, as touch pieces of their traditions and their culture. Coins are the point of contact where an ancient Roman merchant and a Professor in Vancouver, or where a peasant during the Bolshevik Revolution and 21st century American entrepreneur meet.
As a hobby, coin collecting is not only intellectually stimulating, it is a pursuit suited to any budget from $10 per month to $10,000 per month depending on one's tastes. As a teaching aid, it brings the excitement of earlier cultures into the classroom, providing instant "hands on" stimulus for students who don't fully grasp the reality of the past they are studying.
Coins are one of the few examples of ancient or medieval artifacts to have been mass produced in the modern sense. They are a readily available primary source, reflecting history in a variety of fields. Each coin is capable of reflecting cultural, political, economic, and technological trends. Most are also capable of indicating the social, religious, and ethical ideals of the people who created them. For the ancient and medieval periods they are perhaps the only primary source common enough to be widely dispersed among the population without being reproduced artificially.
Who is Allen G. Berman?
For those who reasonably ask "How
could coins that old be real?" permit me to offer my credentials.
(For long time friends, forgive me for blowing my own horn.) I have
been a full time numismatist since 1981 and this is the only profession
I have known. I have written several books and a number of articles.
I have been cited as an expert by The Celator, Coins, Numismatic Literary
Guild Journal, World Coin News, Seattle Times and The
New York Times. I have been interviewed on topics ranging from early
U.S. Silver dollars to coins of the new post Soviet republics.
I began coin collecting as a childhood
hobby, but the study of coins soon became a key focus in my life. As an
undergraduate I was given the
opportunity to work directly with the American Numismatic Society's collections,
recataloging a portion of its medieval holdings. At present I serve as
a member of the Society's Committee on Medieval Coins. I completed my
master's thesis on early papal coins in 1986. I have presented lectures
to groups as diverse as the Cub Scouts and MENSA. In 1997 I was appointed
an instructor for the American Numismatic Association's Summer Conference,
creating an intensive course in medieval coins attended by numismatists
from both the United Staes and overseas.
© 2010 Allen G. Berman