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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.


Aurelian, August or September 270 - October or November 275 A.D.

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Sear identifies this denomination for Aurelian as either an as or a reduced sestertius. The as (or reduced sestertius) is a very scarce denomination this late in the empire.
RA76203. Bronze as, MER-RIC 1871, Gbl MIR 145d0(1), BnF XII 297, Hunter IV 33, SRCV III 11646, RIC V 80 var. (officina number), Hunter IV 27 var. (4th officina), VF, well centered, nice green patina, flan crack, weight 6.041 g, maximum diameter 26.7 mm, die axis 180o, 1st officina(?), Rome mint, issue 11, early - September 275; obverse IMP AVRELIANVS AVG, laureate and cuirassed bust right; reverse CONCORDIA AVG (harmony of the Emperor), Emperor and empress clasping hands, above and between them a radiate and draped bust of Sol right; $120.00 (102.00)


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

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On 8 October 314, at the Battle of Cibalae, Constantine defeated Licinius near Colonia Aurelia Cibalae (modern Vinkovci, Croatia). Licinius was forced to flee to Sirmium and lost all of the Balkans except for Thrace. The two Augusti initiated peace negotiations, but they failed and they would not make peace until 1 March 317.
RL85191. Billon follis, RIC VII Ticinum 21 (R1), SRCV IV 16087, Cohen VII 536, cf. Hunter V 139 (TT, 314 A.D.), Choice EF, nice portrait and reverse style, green patina, weight 3.279 g, maximum diameter 20.5 mm, die axis 0o, 3rd officina, Ticinum (Pavia, Italy) mint, 314 - 315 A.D.; obverse IMP CONSTANTINVS P F AVG, laureate and cuirassed bust right; reverse SOLI INVI-C-TO COMITI, Sol standing slightly left, radiate, nude but for chlamys over shoulders and left arm, raising right hand commanding the sun to rise, celestial globe in left hand, star in left field, TT in exergue; rare; $120.00 (102.00)


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; $115.00 (97.75)


Elagabalus, 16 May 218 - 11 March 222 A.D.

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The star in the field, a symbol of the sun-god, stands for the mint of Rome.
RS77436. Silver denarius, RIC IV 40b, RSC III 184, Hunter III 49, BMCRE V p. 567, 244; cf. SRCV II 7533 (TR P III), VF, well centered, nice portrait, toned, some die wear, porous, weight 3.150 g, maximum diameter 19.1 mm, Rome mint, 221 A.D.; obverse IMP ANTONINVS PIVS AVG, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right, from behind; reverse P M TR P IIII COS III P P, Sol advancing left, radiate, nude but for cloak over shoulders and left arm and flying behind, raising right hand commanding the sun to rise, whip vertical in left hand, star in left field; $115.00 (97.75)


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]."
RL71417. Billon follis, 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 cuirassed bust right; reverse SOLI INVICTO COMITI (to the unconquered Sun, minister [of the Emperor]), Sol standing half left, radiate, nude but for chlamys over shoulders and left arm, raising right hand commanding the sun to rise, extending globe in left hand, R over X left, F right, R Q in ANT in exergue; $95.00 (80.75)


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; $90.00 (76.50)


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

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On May 21 the Orthodox Christian Church celebrates the "Feast of the Holy Great Sovereigns Constantine and Helen, Equal to the Apostles."
RT77400. Billon follis, RIC VII Rome 27, SRCV IV 16097, Cohen VII -, Choice VF, silvering, clashed dies, weight 3.046 g, maximum diameter 21.3 mm, die axis 0o, 1st officina, Rome mint, 314 - 315 A.D.; obverse IMP CONSTANTINVS P F AVG, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse SOLI INVICTO COMITI (to the unconquered Sun, minister [of the Emperor]), Sol standing half left, radiate, nude but for chlamys over shoulders and left arm, raising right hand commanding the sun to rise, globe in left hand, R over X on left, F on right, P R in exergue; $90.00 (76.50)


Malaka, Punic Iberia, 175 - 91 B.C.

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Phoenicians from Tyre founded Malaka (Mlaga, Spain today) about 770 B.C. The name was probably derived from the Phoenician word for "salt" because fish was salted near the harbor. After a period of Carthaginian rule, Malaka became part of the Roman Empire. The Roman city enjoyed remarkable development under a special law, the Lex Flavia Malacitana. A Roman theater was built at this time. After the fall of the Western Roman Empire, it was ruled first by the Visigoths and then the Byzantine Empire (550621). It was regained by the Visigoths in 621 and ruled by them until the Umayyad Muslim conquest in 711.
RP84866. Bronze AE 28, Villaronga-Benages 786, Burgos 1727, Villaronga CNH 9, SNG Lorichs 93, SNG BM Spain 357, aVF, double struck, encrustations, corrosion, ragged edge, weight 13.180 g, maximum diameter 28.4 mm, die axis 90o, Malaka (Mlaga, Spain) mint, 175/150 - 100/91 B.C.; obverse head of Vulcan right, bearded and wearing conical cap, tongs behind, neo-Punic inscription MLK outer left, all within laurel wreath; reverse radiate bust of Helios facing; ex Pegasi Numismatics ($175); $90.00 (76.50)


Gallienus, August 253 - September 268 A.D.

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RIC lists this type as common, but Gbl lists only a single specimen, and Coin archives lists only one from the first officina and none from the second.
RA71050. Billon antoninianus, Gbl MIR 1212f (1 example), RIC V S494, Cohen V 686, Cunetio -, VF, uneven toning, light corrosion, weight 1.781 g, maximum diameter 21.0 mm, die axis 180o, 2nd officina, Mediolanum (Milan, Italy) mint, 266 A.D.; obverse GALLIENVS AVG, radiate head right; reverse ORIENS AVG (the rising sun of the Emperor), Sol standing half left, radiate, nude but for chlamys over shoulders and left arm, raising right hand commanding the sun to rise, whip in left, S in exergue; rare; $80.00 (68.00)


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

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On 25 July 315, The Arch of Constantine was completed near the Colosseum at Rome to commemorate Constantine's victory over Maxentius at the Milvian Bridge. As part of the ceremony Constantine was expected to make a sacrifice to Rome's traditional gods, but he refused to do so.
RT84695. Billon follis, Hunter V 189 (also 3rd officina), RIC VII Rome 33, SRCV IV 16098, Cohen VII 536,, VF, excellent portrait, weight 2.932 g, maximum diameter 19.3 mm, die axis 315o, 3rd officina, Rome mint, 315 A.D.; obverse IMP CONSTANTINVS P F AVG, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse SOLI INVICTO COMITI (to the unconquered Sun, minister [of the Emperor]), Sol standing half left, radiate, nude but for chlamys over shoulders and left arm, raising right hand commanding the sun to rise, globe in left hand, S - F flanking at sides, RT in exergue; $80.00 (68.00)




    



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Catalog current as of Thursday, December 14, 2017.
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