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Roman Commemoratives, 307 - 361 A.D.

Constantine the Great and his sons issued small bronze coins commemorating the old capital, Rome, and the new capital, Constantinople, to symbolize the equality of the two cities and the new importance of Constantinople to the empire. On this page we also list consecration commemoratives issued by Constantine and his sons.


People of Rome and Milvian Bridge Commemorative, 330 A.D.

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Constantine is most famous for leading the Empire to Christianity. Before the Battle of the Milvian Bridge, he saw the words "In Hoc Signo Victor Eris" (By this sign you shall conquer) on the sun around a Chi Rho ligature. With the symbol of Christ on his army's shields, he was victorious.

This type was part of a special issue struck for the dedication of the new capital at Constantinople.
RL84521. Billon half centenionalis, RIC VIII Constantinople 21, LRBC I 1066, Vagi 3043, F/VF, well centered, dark green patina, encrustations, flan crack, weight 0.934 g, maximum diameter 13.9 mm, die axis 0o, 2nd officina, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, 330 A.D.; obverse POP ROMANVS, laureate bust of the Genius of the Roman people left, cornucopia on left shoulder; reverse the Milvian bridge over the Tiber River, CONS over B (2nd officina) above, water flowing below; from the Dr. Sam Mansourati Collection; $100.00 (€89.00)
 


City of Constantinople Commemorative, 330 - 333 A.D.

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On 11 May 330, Constantine I refounded Byzantium, renamed it Constantinopolis after himself, and moved the capital of the Roman Empire from Rome to his new city. Coins were issued with types for Rome and Constantinople to advertise the importance of the new capital.
RL84522. Billon reduced centenionalis, Hunter V 12 (also 4th officina), RIC VII Thessalonica 188, LRBC I 839, SRCV IV 16470, Cohen VII 22, F, many cleaning scratches, weight 2.579 g, maximum diameter 19.6 mm, die axis 180o, 4th officina, Thessalonica (Salonika, Greece) mint, 330 - 333 A.D.; obverse CONSTANTINOPOLIS, helmeted, laureate and mantled bust left holding scepter across shoulder; reverse Victory standing left, right foot on prow, scepter in right hand, resting left hand on grounded shield, SMTS∆ in exergue; $22.00 (€19.58)
 


City of Constantinople Commemorative, 333 - 334 A.D.

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On 11 May 330, Constantine I refounded Byzantium, renamed it Constantinopolis after himself, and moved the capital of the Roman Empire from Rome to his new city. Coins were issued with types for Rome and Constantinople to advertise the importance of the new capital.
RL84852. Billon reduced centenionalis, RIC VII Lyons 266 (R3), LRBC I 206, Bastien XIII 254, SRCV IV 16450, Hunter V -, Choice EF, nice style, a little weak at centers, weight 2.375 g, maximum diameter 17.6 mm, die axis 0o, 2nd officina, Lugdunum (Lyon, France) mint, 333 - 334 A.D.; obverse CONSTANTINOPOLIS, laureate and helmeted bust of Constantinopolis left, wearing imperial cloak, scepter over left shoulder; reverse Victory standing left, right foot on prow, scepter in right hand, resting left hand on grounded shield, *SLG in exergue; ex FORVM (2007); rare; $85.00 (€75.65)
 


City of Constantinople Commemorative, 336 - 337 A.D.

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RL83773. Billon reduced centenionalis, RIC VIII Heraclea 29, LRBC II 942, SRCV V 17521, F, porous, earthen deposits, weight 1.649 g, maximum diameter 17.3 mm, die axis 0o, 4th officina, Heraclea (Marmara Ereglisi, Turkey) mint, c. 337 - 340 A.D.; obverse CONSTANTINOPOLIS, laureate and helmeted bust of Constantinopolis left, wearing imperial cloak, scepter over left shoulder; 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, SMH∆ in exergue; $29.00 (€25.81)
 


City of Rome Commemorative, 337 - 340 A.D.

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Much less common than the wolf and twins reverse type.
BB83860. Billon reduced centenionalis, RIC VII Heraclea 156 (R3), LRBC 941, SRCV IV 16529, Cohen VII 1, F, edge chips, weight 1.127 g, maximum diameter 15.9 mm, die axis 105o, 2nd officina, Heraclea (Marmara Ereglisi, Turkey) mint, 336 - 337 A.D.; obverse VRBS ROMA, helmeted bust of Roma left wearing imperial mantle; reverse GLORIA EXERCITVS (glory of the army), 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, standard in center, SMHB in exergue; scarce; $5.01 (€4.46)


City of Rome Commemorative, 332 - 333 A.D.

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On 11 May 330, Constantine I refounded Byzantium, renamed it Constantinopolis after himself, and moved the capital of the Roman Empire from Rome to his new city. Coins were issued with types for Rome and Constantinople to advertise the importance of the new capital.
RL79229. Billon reduced centenionalis, RIC VII Trier 542, LRBC I 65, SRCV IV 16488, Cohen VII 17, Hunter V 1 var. (1st officina), Choice EF, full circles strike on a broad flan, porosity, small edge split, weight 2.689 g, maximum diameter 19.0 mm, die axis 180o, 2nd officina, Treveri (Trier, Germany) mint, 332 - 333 A.D.; obverse VRBS ROMA, helmeted bust of Roma left wearing imperial mantle; reverse she-wolf standing left, head turned back right, suckling the infant twins Romulus and Remus, two stars above, TR•S in exergue; $90.00 (€80.10)
 


City of Rome Commemorative, 332 - 333 A.D.

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On 11 May 330, Constantine I refounded Byzantium, renamed it Constantinopolis after himself, and moved the capital of the Roman Empire from Rome to his new city. The new capital was Christian, old gods and traditions were either replaced or assimilated into a framework of Christian symbolism. Constantine built the new Church of the Holy Apostles on the site of a temple to Aphrodite. Generations later there was the story that a divine vision led Constantine to this spot. The capital would often be compared to the 'old' Rome as Nova Roma Constantinopolitana, the "New Rome of Constantinople." Special commemorative coins were issued with types for both Rome and Constantinople to advertise the importance of the new capital.
RL79233. Billon reduced centenionalis, RIC VII Trier 542, LRBC I 65, SRCV IV 16488, Cohen VII 17, Hunter V 1 var. (1st officina), Choice EF, perfect centering, reverse strike slightly weak, light porosity, weight 2.704 g, maximum diameter 18.2 mm, die axis 180o, 2nd officina, Treveri (Trier, Germany) mint, 332 - 333 A.D.; obverse VRBS ROMA, helmeted bust of Roma left wearing imperial mantle; reverse she-wolf standing left, head turned back right, suckling the infant twins Romulus and Remus, two stars above, TR•S in exergue; $90.00 (€80.10)
 


City of Constantinople Commemorative, 330 - 331 A.D.

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On 11 May 330, Constantine I refounded Byzantium, renamed it Constantinopolis after himself, and moved the capital of the Roman Empire from Rome to his new city. The new capital was Christian, old gods and traditions were either replaced or assimilated into a framework of Christian symbolism. Constantine built the new Church of the Holy Apostles on the site of a temple to Aphrodite. Generations later there was the story that a divine vision led Constantine to this spot. The capital would often be compared to the 'old' Rome as Nova Roma Constantinopolitana, the "New Rome of Constantinople." Special commemorative coins were issued with types for both Rome and Constantinople to advertise the importance of the new capital.
RL79191. Billon reduced centenionalis, RIC VII Trier 530, LRBC I 59, SRCV IV 16444, Cohen VII 22, Hunter V 1 var. (1st officina), Choice VF, excellent centering, some obverse die wear, small edge cracks, weight 3.354 g, maximum diameter 18.0 mm, die axis 180o, 2nd officina, Treveri (Trier, Germany) mint, 330 - 331 A.D.; obverse CONSTANTINOPOLIS, laureate and helmeted bust of Constantinopolis left, wearing imperial cloak, scepter over left shoulder; reverse Victory standing left, right foot on prow, scepter in right hand, resting left hand on grounded shield, TRS• in exergue; $60.00 (€53.40)
 


City of Constantinople Commemorative, 330 - 331 A.D.

Click for a larger photo
On 11 May 330, Constantine I refounded Byzantium, renamed it Constantinopolis after himself, and moved the capital of the Roman Empire from Rome to his new city. The new capital was Christian, old gods and traditions were either replaced or assimilated into a framework of Christian symbolism. Constantine built the new Church of the Holy Apostles on the site of a temple to Aphrodite. Generations later there was the story that a divine vision led Constantine to this spot. The capital would often be compared to the 'old' Rome as Nova Roma Constantinopolitana, the "New Rome of Constantinople." Special commemorative coins were issued with types for both Rome and Constantinople to advertise the importance of the new capital.
RL79192. Billon reduced centenionalis, Hunter V 1 (also 1st officina), RIC VII Trier 530, LRBC I 59, SRCV IV 16444, Cohen VII 22, Choice EF, well centered, mint luster, reverse die wear, small spots of porosity, weight 2.462 g, maximum diameter 18.2 mm, die axis 0o, 1st officina, Treveri (Trier, Germany) mint, 330 - 331 A.D.; obverse CONSTANTINOPOLIS, laureate and helmeted bust of Constantinopolis left, wearing imperial cloak, scepter over left shoulder; reverse Victory standing left, right foot on prow, scepter in right hand, resting left hand on grounded shield, TRP• in exergue; $70.00 (€62.30)
 


City of Constantinople Commemorative, 330 - 331 A.D.

Click for a larger photo
On 11 May 330, Constantine I refounded Byzantium, renamed it Constantinopolis after himself, and moved the capital of the Roman Empire from Rome to his new city. The new capital was Christian, old gods and traditions were either replaced or assimilated into a framework of Christian symbolism. Constantine built the new Church of the Holy Apostles on the site of a temple to Aphrodite. Generations later there was the story that a divine vision led Constantine to this spot. The capital would often be compared to the 'old' Rome as Nova Roma Constantinopolitana, the "New Rome of Constantinople." Special commemorative coins were issued with types for both Rome and Constantinople to advertise the importance of the new capital.
RL79193. Billon reduced centenionalis, RIC VII Trier 530, LRBC I 59, SRCV IV 16444, Cohen VII 22, Hunter V 1 var. (1st officina), Choice EF, nearly as struck, mint luster, small edge cracks, weight 2.216 g, maximum diameter 17.8 mm, die axis 180o, 2nd officina, Treveri (Trier, Germany) mint, 330 - 331 A.D.; obverse CONSTANTINOPOLIS, laureate and helmeted bust of Constantinopolis left, wearing imperial cloak, scepter over left shoulder; reverse Victory standing left, right foot on prow, scepter in right hand, resting left hand on grounded shield, TRS• in exergue; $70.00 (€62.30)
 










OBVERSE LEGENDS

CONSTANTINOPOLI
CONSTANTINOPOLIS
POPROMANVS
ROMA
VRBSROMA
VRBSROMABEATA


REFERENCES

Bruun, P. The Roman Imperial Coinage, Vol VII, Constantine and Licinius A.D. 313 - 337. (London, 1966).
Carson, R., P. Hill & J. Kent. Late Roman Bronze Coinage. (London, 1960).
Carson, R., H. Sutherland & J. Kent. The Roman Imperial Coinage, Vol VIII, The Family of Constantine I, A.D. 337 - 364. (London, 1981).
Cohen, H. Description historique des monnaies frappées sous l'Empire Romain, Vol. 7: Carausius to Constantine & sons. (Paris, 1888).
Failmezger, V. Roman Bronze Coins From Paganism to Christianity, 294 - 364 A.D. (Washington D.C., 2002).
Milchev, S. The Coins of Constantine the Great. (Sophia, 2007).
Paolucci, R. & A. Zub. La monetazione di Aquileia Romana. (Padova, 2000).
Robinson, A. Roman Imperial Coins in the Hunter Coin Cabinet, University of Glasgow, Vol. V. Diocletian (Reform) to Zeno. (Oxford, 1982).
Sear, D. Roman Coins and Their Values, Vol. IV: The Tetrarchies and the Rise of the House of Constantine: The Collapse of Paganism and the Triumph of Christianity, Diocletian To Constantine I, AD 284 - 337. (London, 2011).
Sear, D. Roman Coins and Their Values, Vol. V: The Christian Empire: The Later Constantinian Dynasty and the Houses of Valentinian and Theodosius and Their Successors, Constantine II to Zeno, AD 337 - 491. (London, 2014).
Vagi, D. Coinage and History of the Roman Empire. (Sidney, 1999).
Voetter, O. Die Münzen der romischen Kaiser, Kaiserinnen und Caesaren von Diocletianus bis Romulus: Katalog der Sammlung Paul Gerin. (Vienna, 1921).

Catalog current as of Sunday, April 30, 2017.
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Commemoratives