The Coins From Villa Borg

U. Werz, Die Fundmünzen der römischen Villa Borg bis zum Fundjahr 2017. Denkmalpflege im Saarland 10, Landesdenkmalamt Saarbrücken 2022. 379 pp., 4 pl., colour illustrations. Hardcover. ISBN 978-3-927856-22-6.
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The Villa Borg in the Gemeinde Perl (Kreis Merzig-Wadern) in Saarland in Western Germany is an intriguing archaeological site- an agricultural and industrial complex in a rural area between the Saar and Mosel rivers, but with trade links throughout the wider region, stretching as far as Trier, Metz and Luxemburg, and with a history of habitation stretching through the Neolithic and Bronze Ages up to the end of the Roman period. Although there are no written sources concerning the Villa Borg (as it was later named), it is of particular interest to numismatists due to the exceptional number of coins which have been found in the living quarters and industrial areas of the site. The numismatist and coin finds specialist Ulrich Werz (Landesdenkmalamt Hannover) has now documented the coin finds in and around the Villa Borg up to the year 2017, building on preliminary documentation by Auguste V.B. Miron.

The earliest coins to have been found at the site are Celtic potins of the Leuci, Santones and Treveri (Reece minting period 1, up to the end of the 1st Century B.C.)., followed by scattered Roman denarii of the Republican period. The finds continue through the Roman Imperial Period, including several halved and countermarked coins, but the bulk of the material dates from the 3rd Century A.D. (Reece minting period 25 onwards), as the Roman emperors gradually lost control over the Northern territories, and the Gallic Empire was formed. Much of the catalogue is devoted to the local imitative coinage (“barbarous radiates”) produced in the names of Divus Claudius II, Victorinus and the Tetrici, which has been found in large quantities at the Villa Borg. Each coin is described and illustrated in colour in the catalogue, which also encompasses two coin hoards found at the site, one with coins of the Roman Republican to Early Imperial Age (Reece periods 11-14, up to coins minted by Antoninus Pius for Marcus Aurelius), and a second hoard of the Third Century with coins of Victorinus, the Tetrici and numerous local imitations.

The new catalogue by Ulrich Werz provides welcome documentation of the coin finds at this important and unusual archaeological complex in Saarland.


Here you can find more information about Archaeological Park Villa Borg.

Ursula Kampmann also visited the reconstructed villa complex and reported on it.

Read more about Claire Franklin.