The Romans did, however, strike some strange coin - like objects from lead. These were called tesserae, a word with a meaning similar to "tile" or "chip". Tesserae were used for various different purposes, including tokens for admission to the games in the arena, gaming and betting counters, and as bawdy house tokens. Today, a small worn lead tessera may be much more valuable than a coin from the same era because the tesserae aren't found as often as coins and collectors find them fascinating. It is not unusual for them to bring a price at auction of 1000 to 1500 dollars.
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