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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Roman Coins ▸ Roman Mints ▸ AntiochView Options:  |  |  | ◁◁      ▷▷

Antioch, Syria (Antakiyah, Turkey)

Because of Egypt's isolated position, Antioch was a more suitable capital for the eastern empire than Alexandria, and to some extent the Roman emperors tried to make the city an eastern Rome. They built a great temple to Jupiter Capitolinus, a forum, a theater, a circus, baths and aqueducts. The city was, however, repeatedly damaged by earthquakes. Edward Gibbon wrote of Antioch: "Fashion was the only law, pleasure the only pursuit, and the splendour of dress and furniture was the only distinction of the citizens of Antioch. The arts of luxury were honoured, the serious and manly virtues were the subject of ridicule, and the contempt for female modesty and reverent age announced the universal corruption of the capital of the East." Antioch was, paradoxically, also an important hub of early Christianity. The city had a large population of Jews and so attracted the earliest missionaries; including Peter, Barnabas, and also Paul during his first missionary journey. Antioch's converts were the first to be called Christians. Late in 311, an embassy from Antioch presented themselves before Maximinus and requested permission to banish Christians from their city. Maximinus initially agreed, but in May 313 restored privileges and property to Christians. Antioch struck coins for provincial Syria before becoming and imperial mint. Imperial mint dates of operation: 217 - 611 A.D. Mintmarks: AN, ANT, ANTOB, SMAN.


Severus Alexander, 13 March 222 - March 235 A.D.

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Julia Maesa ruled as regent for Severus Alexander until her death in 223 or 224. Upon her death power passed to Julia Mamaea, the young emperor's mother. Mamaea governed moderately, advised by a council of 16 distinguished senators. Rome had difficulty accepting rule by a woman. There were numerous plots and revolts, the last of which ended with the murder of the emperor and his mother.
RS90497. Silver denarius, RSC III 470, RIC IV 271, SRCV II 7918, BMCRE VI 1063 note, VF, well centered on a broad flan, some porosity, minor edge crack, weight 2.511 g, maximum diameter 20.0 mm, die axis 180o, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, 223 A.D.; obverse IMP C M AVR SEV ALEXAND AVG, laureate, draped and cuirassed bust right, from behind; reverse PONTIF MAX TR P II COS II P P, Roma seated left on throne, Victory in extended right hand, reversed spear in left, shield rests on the ground beside the throne; scarce; $105.00 (91.35)


Probus, Summer 276 - September 282 A.D.

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The reverse legend abbreviates Clementia Temporum, which can be translated "a time of peace and calm."
RS65435. Silvered antoninianus, RIC V 921, Choice EF, weight 4.138 g, maximum diameter 22.5 mm, die axis 180o, 1st officina, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, obverse IMP C M AVR PROBVS AVG, radiate, draped and cuirassed bust right, from behind; reverse CLEMENTIA TEMP, emperor standing right receiving globe from Jupiter standing left holding long scepter behind in left, A in center, XXI in ex; $100.00 (87.00)


Byzantine Empire, Justin I and Justinian I, April - 1 August 527 A.D.

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This tiny bronze from Antioch is the last coin type to depict the Tyche of Antioch by Eutychides and, indeed, it is the last ancient coin type to depict any classical deity. The sculpture, which first appeared on coins of Antioch in the second century B.C., was made in the late 4th Century B.C. by the Greek sculptor Eutychides of Sicyon for the then newly founded city of Antioch. The sculpture was imitated by many Asiatic cities. There is a small copy in the Vatican.
BZ73040. Bronze pentanummium, DOC I 17, Hahn MIB 13, Wroth BMC 10 - 11, SBCV 133, Morrisson BnF -, Ratto -, F, nice glossy green patina with earthen highlighting, weight 1.716 g, maximum diameter 12.5 mm, die axis 180o, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, obverse D N D N IVSTINVS ET IVSTINIANVS PP AVG (or similar), diademed, draped and cuirassed busts of Justin and Justinian facing; reverse Tyche of Antioch seated left, reversed E left, all within a distyle shrine; very rare; $100.00 (87.00)


Valentinian II, 17 November 375 - 15 May 392 A.D.

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On 9 August 378, in Rome's greatest defeat since Hannibal, Valens was defeated by the Visigoths at the Battle of Adrianople. The emperor was killed along with two-thirds of his army. Rome was left with no choice but to ally with former enemies. In 379, the Visigoths were settled in the Balkans. In 380, the Germans, Sarmatians and Huns were taken into Imperial service. Barbarian leaders began to play an increasingly active role in ruling the Roman Empire.
RL71419. Bronze AE 3, RIC IX Antioch 51, gVF, perfect centering, flat areas, weight 2.746 g, maximum diameter 18.6 mm, die axis 0o, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, 9 Aug 378 - 25 Aug 383 A.D.; obverse D N VALENTINIA-NVS IVN P F AVG, pearl-diademed, draped and cuirassed bust right; reverse VRBS ROMA, Roma seated left on cuirass, Victory on globe in right, spear vertical behind in left, Θ left, * over Φ right, ANT∆ in ex; $95.00 (82.65)


Diocletian, 20 November 284 - 1 May 305 A.D.

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A sum of Greek numerals E (5) and ∆ (4) is used to indicate the 9th officina in order to avoid using Θ (9). Because they sound alike, theta (Θ) was associated with Thanatos, the daemon personification of death. Theta used as a warning symbol of death, in the same way that skull and crossbones are used in modern times. It survives on potsherds used by Athenians voting for the death penalty. Also, after a funeral "Nine Days of Sorrow," were solemnly observed by the family. Romans avoided the use of theta, as we avoid the use of the number 13 today.
RA72411. Silvered antoninianus, RIC V 322, Cohen VI 34, Choice EF, excellent centering and strike, near full silvering, weight 4.120 g, maximum diameter 20.9 mm, die axis 0o, 9th officina Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, 293 - 295 A.D.; obverse IMP C C VAL DIOCLETIANVS P F AVG, radiate draped and cuirassed bust right; reverse CONCORDIA MILITVM, Diocletian receiving Victory on globe from Jupiter, E∆ (officina 9) in center, XXI in exergue; $95.00 (82.65)


Constantine the Great, Early 307 - 22 May 337 A.D.

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In 336, Constantine reduced the weight of the centenionalis from c. 2.5 grams to c. 1.7 grams. The earlier heavier coins have two standards between the soldiers. Coins struck on the later lighter standard have only one standard.
RL72428. Billon reduced centenionalis, RIC VII Antioch 108, LRBC I 1363, SRCV IV 16374, Cohen VII 250, aMS, weight 1.693 g, maximum diameter 15.3 mm, die axis 270o, 1st officina, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, 336 - 337 A.D.; obverse CONSTANTINVS MAX AVG, rosette-diademed, draped and cuirassed bust right; reverse GLORIA EXERCITVS (glory of the army), two soldiers standing facing, flanking a standard in center, heads confronted, each holds a spear in outer hand and rests inner hand on grounded shield, SMANin exergue; ex Robert T. Golan; $95.00 (82.65)


Trajan Decius, July 249 - First Half of June 251 A.D., Antioch, Seleucis and Pieria, Syria

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In 256 A.D., about six years after this coin was struck, the Persian King Shapur conquered and plundered Antioch.
RP57232. Billon tetradrachm, McAlee 1135(f); Prieur 546; BMC Galatia p. 220, 583; Dura Coins 524, aVF, weight 12.226 g, maximum diameter 26.1 mm, die axis 180o, 6th officina, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, obverse AVT K Γ ME KY ∆EKIOC TPAIANOC CEB, radiate, draped and cuirassed bust right, from behind, S below bust; reverse ∆HMAPX EΞOYCIAC, S C, eagle standing left on palm branch, head left, wings spread, wreath in beak; scarce; $90.00 (78.30)


Philip I the Arab, February 244 - End of September 249 A.D., Antioch, Seleucis and Pieria, Syria

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When Philip visited Antioch, Saint Babylas refused to let him enter the gathering of Christians at the Easter vigil (Eusebius, Historia ecclesiastica, VI, 34). Legend says Babylas demanded he do penance for the murder of Gordian III before joining the celebration. Saint Babylas died in prison in 253 during the Decian persecution. He asked to be buried in his chains.
SH70792. Billon tetradrachm, McAlee 908, Prieur 368, Dura Coins 400, SNG Cop -, gVF, toned, weight 11.912 g, maximum diameter 25.0 mm, die axis 45o, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, 247 A.D.; obverse AYTOK K M IOYΛI ΦIΛIΠΠOYC CEB, laureate, draped and cuirassed bust right, from behind; reverse ∆HMAPC EΞOYCIAC YΠA TO Γ, eagle standing facing on ground line, wings open, head and tail right, wreath in beak, ANTIOXIA / S - C in exergue; $90.00 (78.30)


Salonina, Augusta, 254 - c. September 268 A.D., Wife of Gallienus

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In Roman mythology, Aequitas was the minor goddess of fair trade and honest merchants. Aequitas was also the personification of the virtues equity and fairness of the emperor (Aequitas Augusti). The scales, a natural emblem of equity, express righteousness. The cornucopia signifies the prosperity which results from Aequitas and Aequitas Augusti.
RS57189. Billon antoninianus, Gbl MIR 1648d, RSC IV 4, RIC V 87, VF, weight 4.068 g, maximum diameter 22.4 mm, die axis 0o, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, 266 - 267 A.D.; obverse SALONINA AVG, diademed and draped bust right, crescent behind; reverse AEQITAS AVG, Aequitas standing half left, scales in right hand, cornucopia in left, crescent left, VIIC (COS VII) in exergue; bold full circle obverse strike on a broad flan; $85.00 (73.95)


Gordian III, 29 July 238 - 25 February 244 A.D.

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A rare and very unusual coin with the image of Liberty but the legend for Liberalitas. Apparently the mint officials in Antioch didn't know the difference between these two Roman personifications.
RS74154. Silver antoninianus, SRCV III 8618, RIC IV 187a (R), RSC IV 126, Hunter III -, gF, marks and mildly rough areas, dark spot on reverse, weight 4.608 g, maximum diameter 22.3 mm, die axis 0o, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, 238 - 239 A.D.; obverse IMP CAES M ANT GORDIANVS AVG, radiate, draped and cuirassed bust right, from behind; reverse LIBERALITAS AVG, Libertas standing slightly left, head left, pileus (freedom cap) in right hand, long transverse rod in left hand; rare; $80.00 (69.60)


Gallienus, August 253 - September 268 A.D.

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Sol Invictus ("Unconquered Sun") was the sun god of the later Roman Empire and a patron of soldiers. In 274 the Roman emperor Aurelian made it an official cult alongside the traditional Roman cults. The god was favored by emperors after Aurelian and appeared on their coins until Constantine. The last inscription referring to Sol Invictus dates to 387 and there were enough devotees in the 5th century that Augustine found it necessary to preach against them. It is commonly claimed that the date of 25 December for Christmas was selected in order to correspond with the Roman festival of Dies Natalis Solis Invicti, or "Birthday of the Unconquered Sun."
RA58208. Billon antoninianus, Gbl MIR 1659f, SRCV III 10364, RIC V S658, RSC IV 987, EF, uncleaned, weight 3.358 g, maximum diameter 19.6 mm, die axis 0o, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, 267 A.D.; obverse GALLIENVS AVG, radiate, draped and cuirassed bust right, from behind; reverse SOLI INVICTO, Sol standing slightly left, radiate, nude but for chlamys over shoulders, raising right hand commanding the sun to rise, whip in left; $75.00 (65.25)


Constantius II, 22 May 337 - 3 November 361 A.D.

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In 330, the Goths devastated the city of Tanais in the Don River delta.
RL71425. Bronze AE 3, RIC VII Antioch 88, weight 2.251 g, maximum diameter 17.7 mm, die axis 180o, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, 330 - 335 A.D.; obverse FL IVL CONSTANTIVS NOB C, laureate and cuirassed bust right; reverse GLORIA EXERCITVS, two soldiers standing facing, heads turned inward confronted, two standards in center between them, each holds a spear in outer hand and rests inner hand on grounded shield, SMANZ in ex; $75.00 (65.25)


Maximinus II Daia, Late 309 - 30 April 313 A.D., Antioch, Syria, Civic Christian Persecution Issue

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In 311, after the death of Galerius in late April or May, representatives from Nicomedia presented themselves before Maximinus, bringing images of their gods and requested that Christians not be allowed to live in their city. Late in 311, an embassy from Antioch, led by their curator Theotecnus, also requested permission to banish Christians from their city and its territory. Other cities followed with the same request. Maximinus support for Antioch's requests is advertised by this coin type. Fearing his co-emperors, however, Maximinus changed his mind. His edict in May 313 restored privileges and property to Christians. Later in 313, Licinius captured Antioch and executed Theotecnus.

E∆ is the mark for 9th officina (5 4 = 9). The Romans avoided the numeral nine because it was associated with death and considered unlucky. Theta (Θ) the Greek symbol for nine was used as an abbreviation for Thanatos (death) and after a funeral Nine Days of Sorrow were solemnly observed by the Roman family. Theta was used as a warning symbol of death, in the same way that skull and crossbones are used today. It survives on potsherds used by Athenians voting for the death penalty.
RL71841. Bronze AE 3/4, McAlee 170(i), Vagi 2954, Van Heesch 3(a), VF, dark patina with red earthen highlighting, weight 1.909 g, maximum diameter 15.5 mm, die axis 315o, 9th officina, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, c. 312 A.D.; obverse GENIO ANTIOCHENI, Tyche of Antioch seated facing on rocks, turreted and veiled, stalks of grain in right; upper body of river-god Orontes below, standing facing in waist deep water, arms outstretched; reverse APOLLONI SANCTO, Apollo standing left, patera in right, kithara in left, E / ∆ (5 4 = 9th officina) right, SMA in exergue; $75.00 (65.25)


Diocletian, 20 November 284 - 1 May 305 A.D.

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The Roman's believed Jupiter granted protection and success to his favorites, who tended to be people in positions of authority similar to his own.
RA62650. Silvered antoninianus, RIC V 325, EF, weight 4.120 g, maximum diameter 20.5 mm, die axis 0o, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, 285 A.D.; obverse IMP C C VAL DIOCLETIANVS P F AVG, radiate, draped and cuirassed bust right; reverse IOVI CONSERVATO-RI AVGG, Emperor (on left) and Jupiter standing confronted, Emperor holding parazonium, Jupiter presenting Victory on a globe offering wreath and holding long scepter vertical behind in left, H in center, XXI in ex; near full silvering; $70.00 (60.90)




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Catalog current as of Tuesday, July 07, 2015.
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Antioch