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Constantine the Great, early 307 - 22 May 337 A.D.
Flavius Valerius Constantinus, Constantine the Great, was the son of Helena and the First Tetrarchic ruler Constantius I. Constantine is most famous for his conversion to Christianity after the battle of the Milvian Bridge where he defeated emperor Maxentius. Before the battle he saw the words "In Hoc Signo Victor Eris" (By this sign you shall conquer) emblazoned on the sun around the Chi Rho, the symbol of Christianity. After placing this Christogram on the shields of his army, he defeated his opponent and thus ruled the empire through divine providence. He also shifted the capital of the empire to Constantinople, establishing the foundation for an Empire that would last another 1000 years. He died in 337 and his sons divided the Roman territories.
This variety appears to be much rarer than RIC VIII's R2 rating indicates. RIC references LRBC and an example from the Chorleywood Hoard found in Hertfordshire, England in 1977. We found only one other example online - in the Forum Members' Gallery.RL70557. Billon reduced centenionalis, RIC VIIIArles 41 (R2), LRBC 41, Voetter -, Milchev Constantine -, aF, scratches, weight 1.269 g, maximum diameter 14.7 mm, die axis 180o, Arelatum (Arles, France) mint, posthumous, 9 Sep 337 - May 340 A.D.; obverseDIVO CONSTANTINO P, veiled and draped bust right; reverseAETERNA PIETAS, Constantine standing right, in military dress, inverted spear behind in left, globe in right hand, X left, [PCON or SCON] in exergue (off flan); very rare; $360.00 SALE PRICE $324.00
In 318, Constantine was given the title Brittanicus Maximus for victories in Britain. The details of the battles are unknown.RL71415. Billonfollis, RIC VII 164, SRCV IV 16083, Cohen -, Nice VF, attractive green patina with red earthen highlighting, weight 3.616 g, maximum diameter 19.1 mm, die axis 315o, 1st officina, Arelatum (Arles, France) mint, 318 A.D.; obverse IMP CONSTANTINVS P F AVG, laureate, draped, and cuirassedbust right; reverseSOLI INVICTOCOMITI, Sol standing half left, radiate, nude but for cloak over shoulders, raising right hand commanding the sun to rise, globe in left, P star in crescent in exergue; scarce; $175.00 SALE PRICE $158.00
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."SH71416. Billonfollis, RIC VIILugdunum 35 (R4), SRCV IV 16069, Cohen VII -, VF, nice armored bust left, sea green patina, light scratches, weight 3.142 g, maximum diameter 21.2 mm, die axis 0o, Lugdunum (Lyon, France) mint, 314 - 316 A.D.; obverse IMP CONSTANTINVS AVG, laureate and cuirassedbust left; reverseSOLI INVICTOCOMITI, Sol standing left, radiate, nude but for chlamys over shoulders, raising right hand commanding the sun to rise, globe in left, TF left, star right, PLG in exergue; very rare; $175.00 SALE PRICE $158.00
RL76326. Billoncentenionalis, RIC VIIArles 291, LRBC I 292, SRCV IV 16307, Hunter V -, Choice EF, near perfect centering and strike, light contact marks, areas of slight porosity, weight 3.643 g, maximum diameter 19.2 mm, die axis 180o, 1st officina, Arelatum (Arles, France) mint, 325 - 326 A.D.; obverseCONSTANTINVS AVG, laureate head right; reverseVIRTVS AVGG, campgate with four turrets, open gates, star above, PA crescent RL in exergue; $150.00 SALE PRICE $135.00
This coin was struck in 314 AD. Anno Domini (AD) year numbering was developed by a monk named Dionysius Exiguus in Rome in 525. In Roman times, the dominant method of identifying Roman years was to name the two consuls who held office that year. The regnal year of the emperor was also used to identify years. The year 314 AD was known as the Year of the Consulship of Rufius and Annianus. Imagine how difficult it would be to use the Roman system. If someone was born in Kennedy year 2, could you determine how old they are now by adding up the number of years each president served since then? Most Romans did not know their own age.RL71418. Billonfollis, RIC VII Rome 19, SRCV IV 16096, Cohen VII -, Choice gVF, attractive style, weight 2.679 g, maximum diameter 20.2 mm, die axis 315o, 1st officina, Rome mint, 314 A.D.; obverse IMP CONSTANTINVS P F AVG, laureate, draped and cuirassedbust right; reverseSOLI INVICTOCOMITI, Sol standing slightly left, radiate, nude but for chlamys over shoulders, raising right hand commanding the sun to rise, globe in left, R - F flanking at sides, R*P in exergue; $145.00 SALE PRICE $131.00
The word comiti, during imperial times indicated a minister of the emperor. Even the two consuls where called "comites." The legend therefore reads: "to the unconquered Sun, minister [of Constantine]."RL71417. Billonfollis, RIC VII Rome 27, SRCV IV 16097, Cohen VII -, Choice VF, perfect centering, Sol's head struck a bit flat, weight 3.181 g, maximum diameter 19.1 mm, die axis 180o, 4th officina, Rome mint, 314 - 315 A.D.; obverse IMP CONSTANTINVS P F AVG, laureate, draped and cuirassedbust right; reverseSOLI INVICTOCOMITI, Sol standing half left, radiate, nude but for chlamys over shoulders, raising right hand commanding the sun to rise, extending globe in left, R over X left, F right, R Q in ANT in exergue; $135.00 SALE PRICE $122.00
Constantine the Great, Early 307 - 22 May 337 A.D.
This coin refers Constantine's victory in the Sarmatian war in 322 A.D. According to Zosimus (lib. 2), Constantine routed the Sarmatae and drove them back beyond the Danube where they rallied to renew the fight. He defeated them and again put them to flight, taking a great number of prisoners. Their King, Rausimodus was left among the slain.RL75806. Billoncentenionalis, RIC VII Trier 435, Cohen VII 487, SRCV IV 16284, Choice EF, perfect centering, Victory's face a little flatly struck, closed crack, weight 3.538 g, maximum diameter 20.4 mm, die axis 180o, 1st officina, Treveri (Trier, Germany) mint, 323 - 324 A.D.; obverseCONSTANTINVS AVG, laureate head right; reverseSARMATIA DEVICTA, Victory advancing right, treading on captive, trophy in right, palm in left, PTR crescent in exergue; $135.00 SALE PRICE $122.00
Constantine is best known for being the first Christian Roman emperor. He reversed the persecutions of his predecessor, Diocletian, and issued the Edict of Milan in 313, which proclaimed religious toleration throughout the empire. He is listed as a saint by the Orthodox Church. Although he is not a Catholic saint, he is revered under the title "The Great" for his contributions to Christianity.RB71810. Billonfollis, RIC VILugdunum 310, Bastien XI 526, SRCV IV 16065, Choice aEF, nicely struck and centered, green patina, weight 5.092 g, maximum diameter 23.0 mm, die axis 180o, Lugdunum (Lyon, France) mint, c. 309 - 310 A.D.; obverse IMP CONSTANTINVS P F AVG, laureate, draped and cuirassedbust right, from behind; reverseSOLI INVICTOCOMITI, Sol standing slightly left, radiate, nude but for chlamys over shoulders, raising right hand commanding the sun to rise, celestial globe in extended left, F left, T right, PLC in exergue; $125.00 SALE PRICE $113.00
The reverselegend abbreviates, VictoriaeLaetae Principium Perpertua, which translates, "Joyous victory to the eternal Prince." VOT P R on the shield abbreviates, Vota Populi Romani, which translates, "Vows of the Roman people."RL72265. Billoncentenionalis, RIC VIILondon 161 (R1), SRCV IV 16296 var (obv. legend, bust), EF, bold strike, nice dark green patina over silvering, crowded flan, weight 3.525 g, maximum diameter 18.3 mm, die axis 0o, 1st officina, Londinium (London, England) mint, 319 A.D.; obverse CONSTAN-TINVS AVG, laureate, helmeted and cuirassedbust right; reverseVICTORIAELAETAEPRINCPERP, two Victories holding shield inscribed VOT / P R over altar, altar ornamented with rhombus pellet in center, PLN in exergue; rare; $125.00 SALE PRICE $113.00
Constantine is best known for being the first Christian Roman emperor. He reversed the persecutions of his predecessor, Diocletian, and issued the Edict of Milan in 313, which proclaimed religious toleration throughout the empire. He is listed as a saint by the Orthodox Church. Although he is not a Catholic saint, he is revered under the title "The Great" for his contributions to Christianity.RL72845. Billon reduced centenionalis, RIC VII Lyons 236 (R3), LRBC I 180, Bastien XIII 203 (3 examples), SRCV IV 16337, Cohen VII 254, EF, nice portrait, some luster, slight porosity in areas on the reverse, weight 2.557 g, maximum diameter 17.9 mm, die axis 180o, 1st officina, Lugdunum (Lyon, France) mint, 330 - 331 A.D.; obverse CONSTANTINVS MAX AVG, laurel and rosette diademed, draped and cuirassedbust right; reverseGLORIA 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, PLG in exergue; rare; $125.00 SALE PRICE $113.00
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