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Roman Coins of the Recovery of the Empire

Carinus, First Half 283 - Spring 285 A.D.

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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.
RA84976. Billon antoninianus, La Venèra 3359 - 3362, RIC V 239, Cohen VI 6, SRCV III -, Hunter IV -, gVF, much silvering, some luster, broad flan, tiny pitting, weight 3.435 g, maximum diameter 22.6 mm, die axis 135o, 7th officina, Rome mint, 283 - 284 A.D.; obverse IMP CARINVS P F AVG, radiate and cuirassed bust right; reverse AEQVITAS AVGG (equity of the two emperors), Aequitas standing half left, scales in right hand, cornucopia in left hand, KAZ in exergue; $120.00 (€106.80)


Probus, Summer 276 - September 282 A.D.

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Virtus was a specific virtue in ancient Rome. It carried connotations of valor, manliness, excellence, courage, character, and worth, perceived as masculine strengths (from Latin vir, "man"). Virtus applied exclusively to a man's behavior in the public sphere, that is to the application of duty to the res publica in the cursus honorum. Private business was no place to earn virtus, even when it involved courage or feats of arms or other good qualities. There could be no virtue in exploiting one's manliness in the pursuit of personal wealth, for example. It was thus a frequently stated virtue of Roman emperors and was personified as the deity Virtus.
RA85002. Billon antoninianus, RIC V 435 corr. (also cuirassed), Hunter IV 112 corr. (same), Cohen VI 819, Pink VI/1 p. 61, Choice VF, nice portrait, much silvering on reverse, some light corrosion, weight 3.724 g, maximum diameter 22.5 mm, die axis 180o, 4th officina, Ticinum (Pavia, Italy) mint, 278 A.D.; obverse IMP C M AVR PROBVS AVG, radiate, draped, and cuirassed bust right, from behind; reverse VIRTVS AVG (the valor of the Emperor), Virtus standing facing, helmeted head left, Victory in right hand, resting left hand on grounded spear and shield, QXXT in exergue; $140.00 (€124.60)


Carus, Early September 282 - c. July or August 283 A.D.

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In 282, Probus traveled towards Sirmium (Serbia). He tried to employ his troops in peaceful projects, such as draining the swamps in Pannonia. His troops, unhappy about this labor, murdered him. Marcus Aurelius Carus, an Illyrian and Probus' praetorian prefect, was proclaimed the new emperor.
BB85088. Billon antoninianus, Hunter IV 1; RIC V, part 2, 45; SRCV III 12187; Cohen VI 114; Pink VI-2 p. 32, series 1a, 2a - b, aVF, well centered on a broad flan, deposits, grainy porous surfaces, weight 3.714 g, maximum diameter 23.4 mm, die axis 0o, 3rd officina, Rome mint, 2nd emission, 282 A.D.; obverse IMP C M AVR CARVS P F AVG, radiate and cuirassed bust right; reverse VIRTVS AVGG (valor of the two emperors), Virtus standing left, resting right hand on grounded shield, spear vertical behind in left, ΓKA in exergue; $36.00 (€32.04)


Probus, Summer 276 - September 282 A.D.

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In 278, Probus defeated the Alamanni, expelled the Franks from Gaul, and reorganized the Roman defenses on the Rhine. He adopted the titles of Gothicus Maximus and Germanicus Maximus and resettled the Germanic tribes in the devastated provinces of the Empire.
BB85089. Billon antoninianus, RIC V, part 2, 733; Cohen VI 507; Hunter IV 262 var. (also 1st officina, bust draped and cuirassed); SRCV III -, F, well centered and struck, dark green patina, a little rough, weight 3.367 g, maximum diameter 21.4 mm, die axis 0o, 1st officina, Siscia (Sisak, Croatia) mint, 278 A.D.; obverse IMP C PROBVS P F AVG, radiate and cuirassed bust right; reverse RESTITVT ORBIS (to the restorer of the world), woman (Orbis?) standing right, presenting wreath with right hand to emperor standing left, emperor holding globe in right hand, long scepter vertical in left hand, star low center, XXIP in exergue; $12.00 (€10.68)


Tacitus, 25 September 275 - June 276 A.D.

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Mars holds both the implements of war and the olive branch of peace. "Peace through strength" is an ancient phrase and concept implying that strength of arms is a necessary component of peace. The phrase has famously been used by many leaders from Roman Emperor Hadrian in the first century A.D., to Ronald Reagan in the 1980s.
RA84987. Billon antoninianus, MER-RIC 3408 (96 spec.), RIC V 145, BnF XII 1681, La Venèra 1565 - 1604, Gloucester 727, Maravielle 785, Hamburger Kunsthalle 1573, Choice VF, silvering, well centered, some light corrosion, weight 4.335 g, maximum diameter 22.3 mm, die axis 180o, 2nd officina, Ticinum (Pavia, Italy) mint, issue 2, early ? June 276; obverse IMP C M CL TACITVS AVG, radiate, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse MARTI PACIF (to Mars the peacemaker), Mars advancing left, wearing crested helmet and military dress, olive branch raised in right hand, transverse spear and oval shield in left hand, S in exergue; $140.00 (€124.60)


Claudius II Gothicus, September 268 - August or September 270 A.D.

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Diana is depicted here in the same pose as The Diana of Versailles, a slightly over life-size Roman marble statue from the 1st or 2nd century A.D., copying a lost Greek bronze original attributed to Leochares, c. 325 B.C. The sculpture may have come from a sanctuary at Nemi or possibly from Hadrian's Villa in Tivoli. In 1556, it was given by Pope Paul IV to Henry II of France, a subtle allusion to the king's mistress, Diane de Poitiers. It is now in the Musée du Louvre, Paris.
RA85169. Billon antoninianus, MER-RIC 1031, RIC V 205, Huvelin 1990 16, Amasya 2311, Cohen VI 67, SRCV III 11327, Hunter VI - (p. lxxxii), Choice VF, coppery surfaces, traces of silvering, weight 3.598 g, maximum diameter 20.0 mm, die axis 180o, 8th officina, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, issue 1, c. September 268 – end 269; obverse IMP C CLAVDIVS AVG, radiate, draped, and cuirassed bust right, from behind; reverse DIANAE VICTR, Diana standing slightly right, head right, drawing arrow with right hand from quiver on right shoulder, bow in left hand, small stag right at feet on right with head turned back looking at goddess, H in exergue; scarce; $140.00 (€124.60)


Claudius II Gothicus, September 268 - August or September 270 A.D.

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Juno was the chief female divinity in the Roman pantheon. She was the wife of Jupiter and a member of the Capitoline Triad. She had many different aspects, such as Juno Moneta, Juno Sospita, and Juno Lucina, but here she is depicted as Juno Regina, "Juno the Queen." Juno is usually shown holding a patera, scepter or a statuette of Athena, and is often accompanied by a peacock.
RA85170. Billon antoninianus, MER-RIC 1020, RIC V 212, Hunter IV 76, Huvelin 1990 7, Amasya 2318, Colonne 481, Komin 1275, SRCV III 11343, Cohen VI 134, Choice VF, well centered and struck, attractive style, coppery surfaces with traces of silvering, weight 3.449 g, maximum diameter 22.0 mm, die axis 180o, 2nd officina, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, 1st issue, c. end 268 – end 269; obverse IMP C CLAVDIVS AVG, radiate, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse IVNO REGINA, Juno standing facing, head left, patera in right hand, long scepter vertical in left hand, peacock left at feet on left with head turned back looking at the goddess, B in exergue; $90.00 (€80.10)


Claudius II Gothicus, September 268 - August or September 270 A.D.

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The ruins of Antioch on the Orontes lie near the modern city of Antakya, Turkey. Founded near the end of the 4th century B.C. by Seleucus I Nicator, one of Alexander the Great's generals, Antioch's geographic, military and economic location, particularly the spice trade, the Silk Road, the Persian Royal Road, benefited its occupants, and eventually it rivaled Alexandria as the chief city of the Near East and as the main center of Hellenistic Judaism at the end of the Second Temple period. Antioch is called "the cradle of Christianity," for the pivotal early role it played in the emergence of the faith. It was one of the four cities of the Syrian tetrapolis. Its residents are known as Antiochenes. Once a great metropolis of half a million people, it declined to insignificance during the Middle Ages because of warfare, repeated earthquakes and a change in trade routes following the Mongol conquests, which then no longer passed through Antioch from the far east.6th Century Antioch
RA85172. Billon antoninianus, MER-RIC 1028, Hunter IV 75, Huvelin 1990 14, Amasya 2312, Komin 1274, Trésors de Syrie 1965 5, Bastien-Huvelin, 6, RIC V 207, SRCV III 11333, VF, excellent centering and strike, obverse a little rough, very nice reverse, coppery surfaces, traces of silvering, weight 3.421 g, maximum diameter 19.6 mm, die axis 0o, 7th officina, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, issue 1, c. end 268 – end 269; obverse IMP C CLAVDIVS AVG, radiate, draped, and cuirassed bust right, from behind; reverse FIDES AVG, Mercury standing slightly left, nude but for petasos, boots and cloak on arm, purse in right hand, caduceus in left hand, Z in exergue; $50.00 (€44.50)


Palmyrene Empire, Aurelian and Vabalathus, 270 - 275 A.D.

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Vabalathus, son of the Palmyran king Odenathus and Zenobia, was declared Augustus but Aurelian defeated his forces. He and Zenobia were then taken to Rome where they lived in great comfort. The abbreviated titles of Vabalathus most likely were, Vir Clarissimus Romanorum (or Rex) Imperator Dux Romanorum. The portraits of Vabalathus are interesting because they display both the Roman laurel and the Hellenistic royal diadem.
RA85178. Billon antoninianus, MER-RIC 3106, BnF XII 1246, Göbl MIR 353a4, RIC V 381, Cohen VI 1, SRCV III 11718, Hunter IV -, Choice VF, full circles strike, nice portraits, coppery surfaces with traces of silvering, weight 3.902 g, maximum diameter 21.6 mm, die axis 0o, 4th officina, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, Nov 270 - Mar 272 A.D.; obverse IMP C AVRELIANVS AVG, radiate and cuirassed bust of Aurelian right, from the front, ∆ below; reverse VABALATHVS V C R IM D R, laureate, diademed, draped and cuirassed bust of Vabalathus right, from behind; $180.00 (€160.20)


Tacitus, 25 September 275 - June 276 A.D.

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RA85073. Billon antoninianus, MER-RIC 4036 (32 spec.), RIC V 208, La Venèra 2424 - 2425, BnF XII 1806, Ciron IV 399, Choice EF, well centered and struck, much silvering, weight 4.530 g, maximum diameter 22.2 mm, die axis 180o, 3rd officina, Cyzicus (Kapu Dagh, Turkey) mint, issue 3, Jan - Jun 276; obverse IMP C M CL TACITVS AVG, radiate, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse SPES PVBLICA (the hope of the public), Victory on left, standing right, palm in left hand against left shoulder, with right hand presenting wreath to Tacitus, emperor standing left, wearing military garb, holding long scepter vertical behind in left hand, T in exergue; $90.00 (€80.10)











Catalog current as of Friday, September 22, 2017.
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Recovery of the Empire