This database attempts to use a consistent format for each of its entries. By necessity the information needs to be abbreviated as much as reasonable to conserve space and facilitate searching. Below is an explantion of the method used with this database taking one entry as an example.

RIC 34 (VI, Cyzicus), LRBC 1187 AE3 Obv: CONSTANTINVSAVG - Laureate head right.
Rev: PROVIDENTIAEAVGG Exe: SMK - Camp gate with two turrets and star above. c.325-326 (Cyzicus). Lot sold for $84 5/17/02.

1. RIC 34 (VI, Cyzicus) This is the attribution and reference for this coin. It means that in the sixth volume of RIC (Roman Imperial Coinage by Spink & Sons) it is cataloged as the 34th entry under the Cyzicus section. It also means that you may be able to find more information about this coin under that entry. The volume number of RIC will most often be given for those emperors whose coins are catalogued in more than one volume to avoid confusion.

2. LRBC 1187 This is a secondary attribution. In this case we're crossreferencing this same coin to another catalog; Late Roman Bronze Coinage by Carson, Hill & Kent. As with the RIC attribution, this is their 1187th entry in this work. Sometimes a third or even a fourth attribution will be provided.

3. AE3 This is the denomination of the coin. For this particular coin we have given it the generic term indicating metal composition (AE for non-precious metal, ie. copper or copper-based alloy) followed by size (an AE3 is roughly the size of a U.S. cent).

4. Obv: Short for Obverse, or "Heads" side of the coin.

5. CONSTANTINVSAVG This is the legend readable on the coin's obverse (or at least what it should read assuming legibility!). We have concatenated, or joined, the entire legend to make it easier to find with the search engine and to retain compatibility with the way the legends are written out on the coin. This legend could easily be separated to read "Constantinvs Avg".

6. Laureate head right. This is the text description for the obverse. This coin portrays the head (a bust would include shoulders) of Constantine wearing a laurel wreath, looking right.

7. Rev: Short for reverse, the opposite of obverse.

8. PROVIDENTIAEAVGG The reverse legend, again concatenated, which when separated yields "Providentiae Avgg".

9. Exe: The exergue, if any. Usually only the reverse has an exergue which is the bottom area of the coin and is most often delineated.

10. SMK The inscription for this exergue. SMK stands for "Sacra Moneta Kyzikvs" (translated as "Sacred Money of Cyzicus"). The "O" within a frame is an officina symbol. For the use of this database the actual symbol is replaced with a generic placeholder (the symbol) to signify both its appearance relative to the rest of the inscription as well as its irrelevance to attributing the coin. Last is the dot "" which is an integral part of this particular coin. Other than officinae, the rest of the symbols used in any exergue will affect the attribution of the coin in most cases.

11. Camp gate with two turrets and star above. As with the obverse, this is the text description of the reverse.

12. c.325-326 (Cyzicus) This is the approximate mint date for this coin to read "Circa the year 325 through 326 A.D." It may have been made in either of these two years or very nearly before or after. In parenthesis is the mint location.

13. Lot sold for $84 5/17/02. The price realized at auction on that date. Prices are always quoted in U.S. dollars even when the auction was transacted in a foreign currency. The current exchange rate on that day was used to compute an equivalent value in U.S. dollars. Dates are always marked using standard U.S. practice; eg. month/day/year.

Additionally, coins which have a "v" or "var." are unlisted varieties that differ significantly from the catalog descriptions. Where available, these differences are noted within brackets.