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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Themes & Provenance ▸ Gods, Non-Olympian ▸ SolView Options:  |  |  |   

Sol

Sol sometimes called Sol Invictus ("Unconquered Sun") was the solar deity in Ancient Roman religion. Worship of Sol began early but seems to have become more significant from the reign of Aurelian until the abolition of paganism under Theodosius I.


Florianus, June or July - August or September 276 A.D.

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Florianus, the half brother of Tacitus, was proclaimed emperor in the Western provinces after the latter's death. In the East Probus was declared emperor and the two marched against each other. Before a decisive battle could take place, Florian was murdered by his own soldiers. He "wore the purple" for less than 3 months. The star on reverse may represent a comet that was visible from June to September 276 A.D.
RA88305. Billon antoninianus, MER-RIC 4493 (15 spec), BnF XII 1971, RIC V-1 111, Cohen VI 71, SRCV III -, Hunter IV -, Venra -, Choice EF, well centered and struck, sharp detail, porosity, closed edge crack, weight 3.791 g, maximum diameter 22.2 mm, die axis 0o, 4th officina, Serdica (Sofia, Bulgaria) mint, 1st issue, Jul 276 A.D.; obverse IMP C M ANN FLORIANVS AVG, radiate and cuirassed bust right; reverse PROVIDEN DEOR (the foresight of the gods), Providentia on left, standing slightly right holding two standards, Sol on left, raising right hand commanding sunrise, globe in left hand, star low in center, KA∆ in exergue; ex Nemesis Ancients; $225.00 (191.25)


Probus, Summer 276 - September 282 A.D.

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Invincible Sol charging in a facing quadriga and raising his hand commanding the sun to rise, is one of our favorite reverses of the Roman Imperial series and Forum's recommended coin type for Probus. If you only plan to buy one Probus coin, it should be this type!
RA87626. Billon antoninianus, Hunter IV 315 (also 2nd officina); Pink VI-1, p. 44, em. 3; RIC V-2 911; Cohen VI 682; SRCV III 12041, Choice EF, full circle centering, most silvering remains, uneven strike with part of legends a littl weak, weight 4.298 g, maximum diameter 24.0 mm, die axis 180o, 2nd officina, Cyzicus (Kapu Dagh, Turkey) mint, emission 3, 280 A.D.; obverse IMP C M AVR PROBVS P F AVG, radiate bust left in consular robe, eagle-tipped scepter in right; reverse SOLI INVICTO (to the invincible sun god), Sol in a spread quadriga facing, radiate, cloak billowing out behind, raising right hand commanding sunrise, whip in left hand, CM below center, XXIS in exergue; $150.00 (127.50)


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

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RS86634. Silver denarius, RIC IV 123, RSC III 448, BMCRE VI 950, Hunter III 68, SRCV II 7916, Choice EF, excellent portrait, attractive Sol, well centered and stuck, attractive toning, some very light marks and scratches, weight 2.377 g, maximum diameter 20.1 mm, die axis 0o, Rome mint, 234 A.D.; obverse IMP ALEXANDER PIVS AVG, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse P M TR P XIII COS III P P, Sol advancing left, radiate, nude but for chlamys over shoulders and left arm and flying behind, raising right hand commanding the sun to rise, whip in left hand; $140.00 (119.00)


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

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In 316, Constantine issued an edict prohibiting the punishment of slaves by crucifixion and facial branding.
RL88037. Billon follis, RIC VII Trier 102, SRCV IV 16063, Cohen VII 530, Hunter V -, Choice EF, attractive style, excellent centering and strike, radiating flow lines, weight 2.886 g, maximum diameter 18.4 mm, die axis 180o, 2nd officina, Treveri (Trier, Germany) mint, 316 A.D.; obverse IMP CONSTANTINVS AVG, laureate and cuirassed bust right; reverse SOLI INVICTO COMITI (to the unconquered Sun, minister [of the Emperor]), Sol standing slightly left, radiate, nude but for chlamys over shoulders and left arm, raising right hand commanding the sun to rise, globe in left hand, T - F flanking at sides, BTR in exergue; $100.00 (85.00)


Severus Alexander, 13 March 222 - March 235 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. The date 25 December was selected for Christmas to replace the popular Roman festival Dies Natalis Solis Invicti, the "Birthday of the Unconquered Sun."
RB73721. Orichalcum sestertius, RIC IV 538d, BMCRE VI 593, Hunter III 154, SRCV II 8004, Cohen IV 449 var. (bust), Choice aVF, nice portrait, well centered, nice green patina with some smoothed red areas on the reverse, light corrosion, weight 21.746 g, maximum diameter 31.7 mm, die axis 0o, Rome mint, 234 A.D.; obverse IMP ALEXANDER PIVS AVG, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right, from the front; reverse P M TR P XIII COS III P P, Sol advancing left, radiate, nude but for chlamys over shoulders and left arm, raising right hand commanding the sun to rise, whip in left hand, S - C across field below center; $90.00 (76.50)


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

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The Latin word comiti, during imperial times, indicated a minister of the emperor. Even the two consuls where called "comites." The reverse legend therefore reads: "to the unconquered Sun, minister [of Constantine]."
RL88035. Billon follis, RIC VII Trier 132, SRCV IV 16063, Cohen VII 530, Hunter V -, Choice gVF, perfect centering, well struck, tiny edge crack, weight 3.538 g, maximum diameter 20.6 mm, die axis 0o, 1st officina, Treveri (Trier, Germany) mint, 317 A.D.; obverse IMP CONSTANTINVS AVG, laureate and cuirassed bust right; reverse SOLI INVICTO COMITI (to the unconquered Sun, minister [of the Emperor]), Sol standing slightly left, radiate, nude but for chlamys over shoulders and left arm, raising right hand commanding the sun to rise, globe in left hand, T - F flanking at sides, ATR in exergue; $90.00 (76.50)


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

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In 316, Constantine I sent his half-brother Julius Constantius to Licinius at Sirmium (Pannonia), with a proposal to make Bassianus caesar with power over Italy. Licinius refused, elevated Valerius Valens to augustus, mobilized an army against Constantine, and executed Bassianus. Constantine I defeated Licinius and Valerius Valens at the Battle of Mardia (near Harmanli, Bulgaria).
RL88036. Billon follis, RIC VII Trier 135, SRCV IV 16063, Cohen VII 525, Hunter V -, Choice gVF, excellent centering, black tone with some coppery high spots, tiny edge cracks, weight 3.271 g, maximum diameter 19.8 mm, die axis 180o, 1st officina, Treveri (Trier, Germany) mint, 317 A.D.; obverse CONSTANTINVS P F AVG, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse SOLI INVICTO COMITI (to the unconquered Sun, minister [of the Emperor]), Sol standing slightly left, radiate, nude but for chlamys over shoulders and left arm, raising right hand commanding the sun to rise, globe in left hand turned outward, T - F divided across fields, ATR in exergue; $90.00 (76.50)


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

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Oriens is Latin for "east." Literally, it means "rising" from orior, "rise." The use of the word for "rising" to refer to the east (where the sun rises) has analogs from many languages: compare the terms "Levant" (French levant "rising"), "Anatolia" (Greek anatole), "mizrahi" in Hebrew (from "zriha" meaning sunrise), "sharq" in Arabic, and others. The Chinese pictograph for east is based on the sun rising behind a tree and "The Land of the Rising Sun" to refers to Japan. Also, many ancient temples, including the Jewish Temple in Jerusalem, were built with their main entrances facing the East. To situate them in such a manner was to "orient" them in the proper direction. When something is facing the correct direction, it is said to have the proper "orientation."
RS87916. Silver antoninianus, RIC IV 213, RSC IV 167, Hunter III 167, SRCV III 8626, Choice VF, well centered on a broad flan, light marks, some die wear, small edge cracks, weight 4.077 g, maximum diameter 23.9 mm, die axis 30o, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, 242 - 244 A.D.; obverse IMP GORDIANVS PIVS FEL AVG, radiate and cuirassed bust right, from behind; reverse ORIENS AVG (the rising sun of the Emperor), Sol standing slightly left, radiate, nude but for chlamys over shoulders and left arm, raising right hand commanding the sun to rise, globe in left; ex Beast Coins; $85.00 (72.25)


Gordian III, 29 July 238 - 25 February 244 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. The date 25 December was selected for Christmas to replace the popular Roman festival Dies Natalis Solis Invicti, the "Birthday of the Unconquered Sun."
RS76202. Silver denarius, RIC IV 111, RSC IV 39, Choice VF, excellent portrait, well centered, toned, porous, light marks, weight 3.115 g, maximum diameter 20.4 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 1 Jan 241 - Jul 243 A.D.; obverse IMP GORDIANVS PIVS FEL AVG, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right, from behind; reverse AETERNITATI AVG, Sol standing slightly right, radiate head left, nude but for chlamys over shoulders and left arm, raising right hand commanding the sun to rise, globe in left hand; $70.00 (59.50)


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

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In 316, Constantine I sent his half-brother Julius Constantius to Licinius at Sirmium (Pannonia), with a proposal to make Bassianus caesar with power over Italy. Licinius refused, elevated Valerius Valens to augustus, mobilized an army against Constantine, and executed Bassianus. Constantine I defeated Licinius and Valerius Valens at the Battle of Mardia (near Harmanli, Bulgaria).
RL88033. Billon follis, RIC VII Trier 104, SRCV IV 16063, Cohen VII 525, Hunter V -, Choice gVF, full circles centering, nice portrait, some die wear, tiny edge cracks, weight 3.032 g, maximum diameter 20.9 mm, die axis 180o, 2nd officina, Treveri (Trier, Germany) mint, 316 A.D.; obverse CONSTANTINVS P F AVG, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse SOLI INVICTO COMITI (to the unconquered Sun, minister [of the Emperor]), Sol standing slightly left, radiate, nude but for chlamys over shoulders and left arm, raising right hand commanding the sun to rise, globe in left hand, T - F divided across fields, BTR in exergue; $70.00 (59.50)




  



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