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22. Every year many of these sales take place in the principal cities of Europe. Since, then, this is the system commonly iopted it will be interesting to give a list of sales suilidently important to be worth recording, beginning with the famous collection of Monr D' Eiuiery sold at the end of the eighteenth century, and proceeding in chronological order to those most recent;
1788 D'Ennery at Paris. (550 Consular & 4886 Imperial.)
1844 Welzl dc Wellenheim at Vienna. (8604 Cons. & Imp.)
1845 Revil at Paris.
1845 Cormamond at Paris.
1846 Cav. Gimpana di Roma at London. 1848 Pembroke at London.
1852 J. Sabatier at London.
1852 H. P. Borrel at London.
1853 W. Chaffers jun. at London. 1855 C. W, Loscombe at London. 1S57 Mestre at Paris.
1S57 Cust. Hcrpin at London.
1559 F. Hobler at Loudon.
1560 Lord Nortiiwick at London. i860 Cappe at Leipsic.
i860 Oct. Fontana di Trieste at Paris. (2465 Cons. & Imp.)
1860 Mertens Schaaflhausen at Cologne.
1861 W. S. Lincoln at London. 1S62 Fr. Coch at Cologne.
1863 Adr. Reverchon at Cologne.
1864 Gossclin at Paris.
1866 C. J. Thomsen at Copenhagen.
1868 Gennaro Riccio di Napoli at Paris. (1542 Cons.)
1869 J. Greau at Paris. (4919 Cons. & Imp.)
1869 San Giorgio at Paris.
1870 Be!lct de Tavernost at Paris.
1872 De Moustier at Paris. (4282 Cons. & Imp.) 1875 Bar. R. Von Wildenstein at Frankfort.
1878 J. B. Jarry d'Orleans at Paris. (2426 Cons. & Imp.)
1879 Racine di Marsiglia at Paris. (1966 Cons, oc Imp.)
1880 Grignon de Montigny at Paris. (1083 Cons. & Imp.)
1881 Colson de Noyon at Paris. (1379 Cons. 8c Imp.)
1881 Bart. Borghesi at Milan. (296 Byzantine.) I38i Bart. Borghesi at Rome (3169 Cons. & Imp.)
1882 Morbio di Milano at Monaco. (849 Cons. & Imp.) 1882 Depoletii at Koine. (3271 Cons.&Imp)
1884 Remedi di Sarzana at Milan. (1047 Cons. & Imp.)
1885 Atnilc. Ancona at Milan. (2716 Cons. & Imp.) 1887 Achille Cantoni at Milan. (2014 Cons. & Imp.) 1887 Visc. Ponton d'Amecourt at Paris. (1009 Aurei.)
1887 Baxter at Florence. (2216 Cons. & Imp.)
1888 Lippi di Biccari at Rome. (1741 Cons. & Imp.)
1888 Visc. E. de Quelen at Paris. (2392 Cons. & Imp.)
1889 Eug. Chaix at Paris. (1106 Imp. Greek & Colomal.) 1889 Pasi di Ferraraat Florence. (1547 Imp. & Cons.)
1889 Comte du Chastel at Paris. (525 Cons. &Imp.)
1890 Em. Lipaulle at Paris. (722 Imp.)
1891 Dott. Tom. Capo at Rome. (1154 Asses &Imp.) 1891 Fed. v. Schenms at Frankfort.
1893 Bart. Borghesi at Rome. (1587 Cons. &Imp.)
1894 Merolli at Rome. (1310 Cons. & Imp.)
1894 Pietro Stettiner at Rome. (1537 Cons. & Imp.) 1896 H. Montagu F. S. A. at Paris. (1291 Aurei.} 1898 H. Hoffmann at Paris. (1408 Cons. &Imp.)
Among the old collections the sale of that belonging to d'Ennery was one of the most famous, it consisted of 550 coins of the Republic and 4886 of the Empire with many rare aurei and medallions; among the modern collections that of Visc. E. de Quelen may be mentioned containing 2392 coins both Republican and Imperial in all three metals, sold for fr. 226, 620, 50 (£ 9446); that of d'Amecourt consisting of 1009 splendid aurei which sold for fr. 366,382 (£ 15265); that of Montagu in which 1291 aurei sold for fr. 363,004 (£ 15125).
23. If Private collections represent the circulating mass of ancient coins the Public collections form the only settled deposits. When the waters having wandered in longer or shorter courses through the rivers at length arrive at the sea, this in its turn restores them to the rivers, but it is far otherwise with the Public collections, where the coins after their longer or shorter journeys arrive *o remain there indefinitely... unless in exceptional and unforeseen cases such as robberies.
24. The Public Museums go on continually increasing in number and importance with the progress and extension of general culture.
In the meanwhile those already established, as their means are increased, energetically compete among themselves, and with private collectors. Many other Museums also arise both in the Old World and in the New, and hence their absorbing power becomes ever greater. Among Private collections some come to an end by being sold or given away by the owners, of which there are very many examples.
The Borell, Temple, Wigan, de Salis, and Blacas collections have been given to enrich the British Museum, the collections of d'Ailly and Waddington have been included in that of Paris, the Khevenhuller, Tiepollo, Lipona, Cousinery, Kaunitz, Missong, Kolbe, and Neumann collections have been added to the Imperial Cabinet of Vienna, the collections of Corigliano Saluzzo, Beccaria, Frisi, Anguissola, San Clemente, formed the nucleus of the Cabinet di Brera, and recently the collection of Du Chastel has been acquired by the Belgian government for the Cabinet at Brussels which even more recently has been enriched by the legacy of Baron Hirsch.
To these exceptional acquisitions we must add the normal purchases made by the Museums with the sums annually placed at their disposal by the governments or municipalities, purchases which naturally represent the cream of all that appears in the numismatic market'.
In time we shall see therefore that the best coins will all become part of the public treasure, and there will only remain for private collectors the coins rejected by the Museums or those newly found. But that day is still a long way oft, and we who are now living certainly need not trouble ourselves about it.
25. The most important among the Public collections of Roman money are those of the British Museum, the Bibliotheque Nationale at Paris, and the Imperial Museums of Berlin, Vienna, and St. Petersburg, collections which contain nearly a million coins or even more. In Italy we have no one Museum which can be compared with these colossal collections, just because we have too many.
Those of Milan, Florence, Rome, and Naples, may be mentioned as the principal.
26. Public Museums, like Public Libraries, were created to reach a completeness beyond the power of private collectors, but >;en if this aim were realised the mere collection of a long series of coins would not be enough; there ought also to be learned and active men in charge of them, to elucidate the treasures confided to their charge and to render them really accessible to students. The most illustrious example of such an organisation is given in the British Museum whose officers and agents have already published a numerous series of excellent catalogues, and still go on prosecuting their work with energy and learning. Up to the present time they have been occupied especially in illustrating the Greek series as being that least understood, but we hope soon to see the Roman coins illustrated in their turn. Many points in this series have been treated in innumerable volumes but there yet remains a large field in which the acumen of the learned may be exercised.
SPECIAL AND GENERAL COLLECTIONS
27. Among a hundred individuals who begin to collect one can count on ninety at least setting to work on a general collection, and that because nearly all are ignorant of the vastness of the material before them. It seems to them at first that in putting together the material of a collection they must collect every coin that comes to hand, not dreaming that it will be difficult to grasp the whole even in thought. It therefore happens often enough that a beginner collects coins of all periods and all countries. But as my friend Stiickelberg critically observes, in his golden booklet " Der Mtintzsammler", the well known proverb "every beginning is difficult" is quite inapplicable to the collector.
Nothing is more easy than to start a collection, the difficulty however lies in continuing it and in bringing it to completion.
On this point an old collector of rather modest means whom I asked why men so often scattered their energies over a general collection, replied, because they were not rich enough to form a special collection. And from his point of view he was right. He had passed his seventieth year, and his general collection although of trifling commercial value, had given him the greatest satisfaction for very many years, and more than that, he had also studied, and his name is known in Numismatic literature as the author of several small works which he has published. *
But on the other hand whoever sets himself seriously to make a collection very soon finds out the mistake of trying to grasp too much. He sees the material becoming ever more abundant, and understands that neither his purse nor his mind can keep pace with it, and so is convinced that general collections can only be acquired by Public Museums, and limits his own field of action to one series of coins at most, the ancient or the mediaeval. That is the first step. But even among the ancient coins it is soon found wise to limit oneself to one branch; let us say, for example the Roman. And even in this series almost on entering upon the study and measuring its extent men frequently determine, according to their special inclinations, to select one portion and pass over the rest. One for example devotes himself to the special study of the Republican coinage paying less attention to the Imperial, and altogether neglecting the Byzantine, while another will take no notice of the Republican being exclusively occupied with the Empire.
28. Some moreover go still further in limiting their researches to a certain period and even to a certain reign. Thus we have seen Herr Missong of Vienna devoting himself to the collection and study of the coins of Probus and gathering a collection of over ten thousand varieties which has now passed to the Imperial Museum of Vienna. Herr Rohde gave himself up altogether to the coinage of Aurelian and Severiha which he has elucidated in a most brilliant monograph. Herr Markle limited himself to the coins of Claudius Gothicus, and Herr Kolb to those of Tacitus and Florianus. This extreme specialisation is eminently German, and hence we owe to Germans the most minute and accurate studies such as could only be undertaken by a most patient specialist. There are also collectors who are limited by prudent considerations of economy, denying themselves gold and medallions and even some who keep exclusively to bronze. Others on the contrary animated by the opposite spirit of luxury collect only gold coins as being more pleasing to the eye, especially from the artistic point of view, for we know that the best artists were employed in engraving the dies for the gold coinage. There are lastly some few who most capriciously confine themselves to coins of a given size.
29. There are then reasonable limits imposed by scientific aims or economical motives which are not only admissible but praiseworthy. On the other hand all limits having no other basis than caprice ought to be condemned on scientific grounds. If however it is just and natural to condemn and deprecate such capricious limitations it is not altogether easy to recommend more reasonable bounds; the causes which must determine and justify a choice being altogether special and personal.