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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Themes & Provenance| ▸ |Types| ▸ |Happy Days||View Options:  |  |  |   

FELicium TEMPorum REPARATIO

The reverse legend FEL TEMP REPARATIO was used on coins from the time of Constans and Constantius II to that of Gratian (337 to 375). Although the intended reading of this legend is not completely certain, it most likely reads, FELicium TEMPorum REPARATIO, meaning "re-establishment of the happy times." We prefer to loosely translate it to the more current and lyrical expression, "Happy Days are Here Again!" From the coins below, it seems the Romans had a very different concept of what made for happy times.


Romano-British Empire, Carausius, Mid 286 - Spring or Early Summer 293 A.D.

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Colchester (Camulodunum) and its wall were rebuilt by the Romans after Queen Boudica led a rebellion in A.D. 60 and destroyed the town. Balkerne Gate in Colchester is the largest Roman arch in Britain. Balkerne Gate Colchester
RA73281. Billon antoninianus, RIC V-2 420 (S), Webb Carausius 466, Cohen VII 347, Hunter IV 150, Askew 281, SRCV IV 13731, F/aF, bumps, encrustations, corrosion, weight 2.338 g, maximum diameter 21.5 mm, die axis 225o, Camulodunum (Colchester, England) mint, c. mid 292 - mid 293; obverse IMP C CARAVSIVS AVG, radiate and draped bust right; reverse TEMPORVM FELI (happy times), Felicitas standing left, long caduceus in right hand, cornucopia in left hand, S - P across fields, C in exergue; from the Charles Peters Carausius Collection; scarce; $180.00 (158.40)


Romano-British Empire, Carausius, Mid 286 - Spring or Early Summer 293 A.D.

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Felicitas was the goddess or personification of happiness, good fortune, and success. She played an important role in Rome's state religion during the empire and was frequently portrayed on coins. She became a prominent symbol of the wealth and prosperity of the Roman Empire.
RA73473. Billon antoninianus, RIC V-2 1014 (S), Linchmere 1136 var. (P F AVG), Hunter IV 79 var. (P F AVG, TEMPO), Webb Carausius 1136 var. (same), King Unmarked -, Bicester -, F, green patina, broad flan, weight 4.016 g, maximum diameter 24.0 mm, die axis 270o, unmarked mint mint, c. mid 286 - 287; obverse IMP CARAVSIVS P AVG, radiate and draped bust right, early reign 'moustache' portrait; reverse TEMP FELIC (happy time), Felicitas standing slightly left, head left, grounded long caduceus vertical in right hand, cornucopia in left hand, fields blank; from the Charles Peters Carausius Collection; scarce; $180.00 (158.40)


Constans, 9 September 337 - 19 January 350 A.D.

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In 348, the Goth bishop Wulfila escaped religious persecution by the Gothic chieftain Athanaric and obtained permission from Constantius II to migrate with his flock of converts to Moesia and settle near Nicopolis ad Istrum (Bulgaria).
RL89952. Billon quarter maiorina, RIC VIII Thessalonica 120, LRBC II 1642, SRCV 18732, Cohen VII 10, Hunter V -, Choice EF, excellent centering and strike, green patina, weight 2.574 g, maximum diameter 18.7 mm, die axis 180o, 2nd officina, Thessalonica (Salonika, Greece) mint, 348 - 350 A.D.; obverse D N CONSTANS P F AVG, pearl-diademed, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse FEL TEMP REPARATIO (happy times restored), Constans standing left in galley left, Phoenix on globe in right hand, labarum in left hand, Victory seated in stern steering, TESB in exergue; $120.00 (105.60)


Constans I, 9 September 337 - 19 January 350 A.D.

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The Roman poet Ovid tells the story of the Phoenix: 'Most beings spring from other individuals; but there is a certain kind which reproduces itself. The Assyrians call it the Phoenix. It does not live on fruit or flowers, but on frankincense and odoriferous gums. When it has lived five hundred years, it builds itself a nest in the branches of an oak, or on the top of a palm tree. In this it collects cinnamon and spikenard, and myrrh, and of these materials builds a pile on which it deposits itself, and dying, breathes out its last breath amidst odors. From the body of the parent bird, a young Phoenix issues forth, destined to live as long a life as its predecessor. When this has grown up and gained sufficient strength, it lifts its nest from the tree (its own cradle and its parent's sepulcher), and carries it to the city of Heliopolis in Egypt, and deposits it in the temple of the Sun.'
RL89594. Billon quarter maiorina, RIC VIII Antioch 131 (S, unlisted officina), LRBC II 2619, SRCV V 18667, Cohen VII 21, Hunter V -, VF, green patina, earthen deposits, tiny edge cracks, weight 2.166 g, maximum diameter 17.2 mm, die axis 90o, 6th officina, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, 348 - 350 A.D.; obverse D N CONSTA-NS P F AVG, pearl-diademed, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse FEL TEMP REPARATIO (happy times restored), radiate Phoenix standing right on globe, star right, ANS in exergue; ex Ancient Imports (Marc Breitsprecher), ex Alex G. Malloy (Mar 1993); very scarce; $100.00 (88.00)


Constantius II, 22 May 337 - 3 November 361 A.D.

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The cross was rarely used in early Christian iconography, perhaps because it symbolized a purposely painful and gruesome method of public execution that most early Christians would have personally witnessed. In 315, Constantine abolished crucifixion as punishment in the Roman Empire. The Ichthys, or fish symbol, was used by early Christians. Constantine adopted the Chi-Rho Christ monogram (Christogram) as his banner (labarum). The use of a cross as the most prevalent symbol of Christianity probably gained momentum after Saint Helena, mother of Constantine the Great, traveled to the Holy Land, c. 326 - 328, and recovered the True Cross.
RL89481. Billon light maiorina, RIC VIII Cyzicus 75, LRBC II 2478, Voetter 34, SRCV V 18233, Cohen VII 41, Hunter V -, Choice aEF, excellent centering, dark patina, scratches, earthen deposits, weight 3.168 g, maximum diameter 21.8 mm, die axis 0o, 4th officina, Cyzicus (Kapu Dagh, Turkey) mint, 348 - 351 A.D.; obverse D N CONSTANTIVS P F AVG, pearl-diademed, draped, and cuirassed bust left, holding globe in right hand; reverse FEL TEMP REPARATIO (happy times restored), emperor standing left, labarum in right hand, resting left on grounded shield behind, two kneeling bound captives at feet before him, *SMK∆ exergue; ex Numismatik Naumann auction 73, part of lot 970; $95.00 (83.60)


Constantius II, 22 May 337 - 3 November 361 A.D.

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The Roman poet Ovid tells the story of the Phoenix: 'Most beings spring from other individuals; but there is a certain kind which reproduces itself. The Assyrians call it the Phoenix. It does not live on fruit or flowers, but on frankincense and odoriferous gums. When it has lived five hundred years, it builds itself a nest in the branches of an oak, or on the top of a palm tree. In this it collects cinnamon and spikenard, and myrrh, and of these materials builds a pile on which it deposits itself, and dying, breathes out its last breath amidst odors. From the body of the parent bird, a young Phoenix issues forth, destined to live as long a life as its predecessor. When this has grown up and gained sufficient strength, it lifts its nest from the tree (its own cradle and its parent's sepulcher), and carries it to the city of Heliopolis in Egypt, and deposits it in the temple of the Sun.'
RL88740. Bronze quarter maiorina, RIC VIII Constantinople 93 (S), LRBC II 2019, Voetter 36, SRCV V 18253, Cohen VII 57, Hunter V -, F, ragged flan, bumps and marks, earthen deposits, some legend weak, weight 2.498 g, maximum diameter 19.8 mm, die axis 180o, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, c. 348 - 351 A.D.; obverse D N CONSTANTIVS P F AVG, pearl-diademed, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse FEL TEMP REPARATIO (happy times restored), radiate Phoenix standing right on globe, CONS[...] in exergue; $19.00 (16.72)


Constantius II, 22 May 337 - 3 November 361 A.D.

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In 352, Constantius II invaded northern Italy in pursuit of usurper Magnus Magnentius, who retreated with his army to Gaul. Constantius declared an amnesty for Magnentius' soldiers, many of whom deserted to him. By the end of the year Constantius entered Milan. In 353, Constantius II defeated Magnentius at the Battle of Mons Seleucus. Magnentius committed suicide to avoid capture. Constantius became the sole emperor and reunified the Roman Empire.
RL88673. Bronze reduced maiorina, RIC VIII Constantinople 121, LRBC II 2043, Cohen VII 45, SRCV V 18277, Hunter V 84 var. (6th officina), F, dark patina, tight flan, light marks, light earthen deposits, weight 2.349 g, maximum diameter 17.4 mm, die axis 180o, 3rd officina, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, 353 - 355 A.D.; obverse D N CONSTANTIVS P F AVG, pearl-diademed, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse FEL TEMP REPARATIO (happy times restored), soldier spearing fallen horseman, pellet in center left, shield on ground, CONSΓ in exergue; $18.00 (15.84)


Constantius II, 22 May 337 - 3 November 361 A.D.

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At Mediolanum (Milan) on 6 November 355, Constantius elevated his cousin Julian to the rank of Caesar. Julian was given command of the western provinces and married Constantius' sister, Helena.
RL88555. Bronze quarter maiorina, RIC VIII Siscia 383, LRBC II 1242, cf SRCV V 18271, Hunter V 56, F, light corrosion, weight 2.536 g, maximum diameter 17.1 mm, die axis 0o, Siscia (Sisak, Croatia) mint, 28 Sep 351 - 6 Nov 355 A.D.; obverse D N CONSTANTIVS P F AVG, pearl diademed, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse FEL TEMP REPARATIO (happy times restored), soldier advancing left, spear in right, shield in left, spearing fallen horseman laying over horse's neck, head turned back, wearing a pointed cap and raising arm, shield at feet, L in left field, [...]SIS in exergue; $14.00 (12.32)


Constantius II, 22 May 337 - 3 November 361 A.D.

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Constantius II, unlike his father, allowed Christians to persecute pagans and Jews. Christian clergy inspired angry crowds, which attacked and destroyed synagogues and temples. On 7 May 351, a Jewish revolt broke out in Palestine. The rebels destroyed the Roman garrison in a surprise night attack and acquired the garrison's weapons. The rebels destroyed Diopolis and Tiberias and killed the people of different ethnicities, including Greeks and Samaritans. In 352, Constantius Gallus sent his general (magister equitum) Ursicinus to put down the revolt. Diocesarea, the epicenter of the revolt, was razed to the ground. Ursicinus ordered the execution of thousands of Jews, even children. After the revolt, a permanent garrison was stationed in Galilee.
RL88752. Bronze reduced maiorina, RIC VIII Cyzicus 104 & 110, LRBC II 2496, SRCV V 18285, Cohen VII 47, F, porous, a little rough, weight 3.049 g, maximum diameter 18.0 mm, die axis 0o, 1st officina, Cyzicus (Kapu Dagh, Turkey) mint, 28 Sep 351 - 3 Nov 361 A.D.; obverse D N CONSTANTIVS P F AVG, pearl-diademed, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse FEL TEMP REPARATIO (happy times restored), soldier advancing left, spearing fallen horseman wearing a pointed cap and raising hand, oval shield at feet, SMKA in exergue; $14.00 (12.32)


Constantius II, 22 May 337 - 3 November 361 A.D.

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On 7 May 351, after Constantius Gallus arrived at Antioch, a Jewish revolt broke out in Palestine. In 352, Gallus sent his general (magister equitum) Ursicinus to put down the revolt. The rebels destroyed Diopolis and Tiberias. Diocesarea was razed to the ground. Ursicinus gave the order to kill thousands of Jews, even children. After the revolt, a permanent garrison was stationed in Galilee.
RL88758. Billon heavy maiorina, RIC VIII Constantinople 109, LRBC II 2030, SRCV V 18150, Cohen VII 44, aVF, dark green patina, oval flan, light scratches, earthen deposits, weight 3.906 g, maximum diameter 23.1 mm, die axis 180o, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, 15 Mar 351 - 6 Nov 355 A.D.; obverse D N CONSTANTIVS P F AVG, pearl-diademed, draped, and cuirassed bust right, ∆ behind; reverse FEL TEMP REPARATIO (happy times restored), soldier advancing left, spearing fallen horseman wearing a Parthian cap, shield at feet, Γ left, CONS[...] in exergue; $14.00 (12.32)




  



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FEL TEMP REPARATION