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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Themes & Provenance ▸ Types ▸ Happy DaysView 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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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; $200.00 (176.00)


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)


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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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)


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

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In 356, Constantius II published a decree ordering the closure of all pagan temples throughout the Empire.
RL88760. Bronze reduced maiorina, RIC VIII Sirmium 73, LRBC II 1610, SRCV V 18298, Cohen VII 47, Hunter V -, F, centered, uneven strike with unstruck areas, weight 1.876 g, maximum diameter 19.4 mm, die axis 18.0o, 1st officina, Sirmium (Sremska Mitrovica, Serbia) mint, 355 - 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 standing left spearing fallen horseman, M left, ASIRM in exergue; $14.00 (12.32)


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

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In 1972, a construction worker at Sremska Mitrovica (ancient Sirmium) accidentally broke into an old Roman pot, about 2 meters deep. Inside, in a leather pouch, were 33 Roman gold coins minted at Sirmium, including four coins of Constantius II. The pot was inside a Roman house wall and probably held the hidden savings of a wealthy Roman family. Ironically, the worker's name was Zlatenko (meaning Golden or Golden Man in Serbian).
RL88775. Bronze reduced maiorina, RIC VIII Sirmium 75, LRBC II 1612, SRCV V 18298, Cohen VII 47, Hunter V -, F, green patina, scratches, rough cleaning, earthen deposits, edge splits, weight 2.126 g, maximum diameter 18.1 mm, die axis 180o, 1st officina, Sirmium (Sremska Mitrovica, Serbia) mint, 355 - 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 standing left spearing fallen horseman, M left, ASIRM in exergue; $14.00 (12.32)


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

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The reverse legend can be translated, "Happy Times Restored" but we prefer to loosely translate it to the more current and lyrical expression, "Happy Days are Here Again!"
RL88792. Bronze reduced maiorina, RIC VIII Siscia 377 (S), SRCV V 18296, Cohen VII 47, LRBC I -, Hunter V -, F, full legends, green patina with coppery high points, marks, porosity, small edge splits, weight 2.886 g, maximum diameter 17.5 mm, die axis 180o, 1st officina, Siscia (Sisak, Croatia) mint, c. 356 - 358 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, shield at feet, M upper left, ASIS in exergue; scarce; $14.00 (12.32)


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

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On 5 November 355 Emperor Constantius II in Mediolanum (Milan, Italy) raised his cousin Julian to the rank of Caesar. Julian married Constantius' sister, Helena, and took command of the western provinces.
RL88767. Bronze reduced maiorina, RIC VIII Thessalonica 208, LRBC I 1684, SRCV V 18299, Voetter 40, Cohen VII 45, Hunter V -, F, green patina, tight flan, scratches, porosity, weight 2.654 g, maximum diameter 17.0 mm, die axis 180o, 3rd officina, Thessalonica (Salonika, Greece) mint, c. 356 - 358 A.D.; obverse D N CONSTANTIVS P F AVG, pearl-diademed, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse FEL TEMP REPARATIO (happy times restored), soldier standing left spearing fallen horseman, horseman turned facing soldier and raising arm, oval shield on the ground at feet, M upper left, SMTSΓ in exergue; $11.00 (9.68)




  



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FEL TEMP REPARATION