Denarius (Latin dent, ten apiece), the chief silver coin of ancient Rome, first coined in 269 B.C., and originally of the value of 10 asses (whence its name). After the as was reduced in weight, between 264 and 241 B.C., 16 asses went to the denarius. Under the Republic (judging from existing specimens) it usually contained 60 grains of pure silver; under the Empire, 52-1/2. Its value is usually stated as between 7-1/2d. and 8-1/2d. (or with silver at 40d. per oz., from 4-3/8. to 5d.).