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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Roman Coins| ▸ |Roman Mints| ▸ |Samosata||View Options:  |  |  | 

Samosata, Commagene, Syria (Adiyman Province, Turkey)

Samosata was an ancient city on the right (west) bank of the Euphrates whose ruins existed at the modern city of Samsat, Adiyaman Province, Turkey until the site was flooded by the newly constructed Atatrk Dam. The founder of the city was Sames, a Satrap of Commagene who made it his capital. The city was sometimes called Antiochia in Commagene and served as the capital for the Hellenistic Kingdom of Commagene from c. 160 BC until it was surrendered to Rome in 72. A civil metropolis from the days of Emperor Hadrian, Samosata was the home of the Legio VI Ferrata and later Legio XVI Flavia Firma, and the terminus of several military roads. Seven Christian martyrs were crucified in 297 in Samosata for refusing to perform a pagan rite in celebration of the victory of Maximian over the Sassanids. It was at Samosata that Julian II had ships made in his expedition against Sapor, and it was a natural crossing-place in the struggle between Heraclius and Chosroes in the 7th century. Imperial mint dates of operation: c. 253 - 258 A.D. Mintmarks: none.


Saloninus, Summer 260 A.D.

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Spes was the Roman personification of Hope. In art Spes is normally depicted carrying flowers or a cornucopia, but on coins she is almost invariably depicted holding a flower in her extended right hand, while the left is raising a fold of her dress. She was also named "ultima dea" - for Hope is the last resort of men. On this coin, the Caesar, Saloninus, the designated successor of the emperor, is identified as the hope for the future of the Roman people.
RL88067. Billon antoninianus, Gbl MIR 1707e(1) (Samosata), RIC V-1 36 (Antioch), RSC IV 95a (Antioch), Hunter IV 12, Cunetio 865 (3 spec.), SRCV III 10775, nice VF, attractive dark tone, porosity, weight 3.111 g, maximum diameter 21.6 mm, die axis 180o, uncertain Syrian mint, as caesar, Jan - summer 260 A.D.; obverse SALON VALERIANVS NOB CAES, radiate, draped, and cuirassed bust right, from behind; reverse SPES PVBLICA (the hope of the public), Saloninus (on left) standing right, wearing military garb, holding spear, confronting Spes standing left, raising skirt with left hand, presenting flower to prince with right hand, wreath above; $175.00 (154.00)


Valerian I, October 253 - c. June 260 A.D.

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In 256 A.D., the cities in the Roman Empire begin to build walls as the defense of the frontiers collapsed. The Goths invaded Asia Minor, Dacia was lost, and they appeared at the walls of Thessalonica. The Franks crossed the Rhine. The Alamanni penetrated to Milan. In Africa, the Berbers massacred Roman colonists. King Shapur I invaded Mesopotamia and Syria and plundered Antioch, Zeugma, and Dura-Europos.
RA92851. Billon antoninianus, Gbl MIR 1687e (Samosata), SRCV III 9995, RIC V-1 293 (Antioch), RSC IV 276 (Antioch), Hunter IV 77, Cunetio 851 (39 spec.), Choice EF, excellent portrait, well centered and struck, attractive toning, flow lines, slight porosity, weight 3.103 g, maximum diameter 20.4 mm, die axis 180o, uncertain Syria mint, 255 - 258 A.D.; obverse IMP C P LIC VALERIANVS P F AVG, radiate, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse VIRTVS AVGG (valor of the two emperors), Valerian and Gallienus standing confronted; Valerian on left, scepter in right hand, globe in left hand; Gallienus on right offering Victory to Valerian, transverse spear in left hand; $90.00 (79.20)


Gallienus, August 253 - September 268 A.D.

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Gallienus was the first Roman emperor to commission primarily cavalry units, the Comitatenses, that could be dispatched anywhere in the Empire in short order. He also forbade senators from becoming military commanders. These policies undermined senatorial power, as equestrian commanders rose to prominence. These reforms and the decline in senatorial influence not only helped Aurelian to salvage the Empire, but they also make Gallienus one of the emperors most responsible for the creation of the Dominate, along with Septimius Severus, Diocletian, and Constantine I.
RA89642. Billon antoninianus, Gbl MIR 1687m (Samosata), RIC V-1 456 (Antioch), Cohen V 1310, SRCV III 10414 var. (obv legend), VF, white metal, broad flan, minor porosity, a few small spots of encrustation, tiny edge crack, weight 3.167 g, maximum diameter 23.0 mm, die axis 180o, Syrian mint, 255 - 256 A.D.; obverse IMP C P LIC GALLIENVS P F AVG, radiate, draped, and cuirassed bust right, from behind; reverse VIRTVS AVGG (valor of the two emperors), Valerian (on left) and Gallienus standing confronted; Valerian holds scepter in right, globe in left; Gallienus offering Victory in right, transverse spear in left; ex Beast Coins, ex Dan Hoffman Gallienus Collection; $50.00 (44.00)


Valerian I, October 253 - c. June 260 A.D.

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This ironic reverse utterly failed to foresee Valerian's fate. In 260 A.D., after four years of great losses in battle and to plague, Valerian arranged for talks. He set off with a small group to discuss terms with the Sasanian (Parthian) Emperor Shapur but was never seen again. The date of his death is unknown. In Rome, it was rumored that Shapur used his stuffed body as a footstool.
RS90037. Billon antoninianus, Gbl MIR 1685e (Samosata), RSC IV 189 (Antioch), RIC V-1 287 (Antioch), SRCV III 9967 (uncertain Syrian mint), VF/F, well centered on a broad flan, toned, struck with a worn reverse die, weight 4.358 g, maximum diameter 21.9 mm, die axis 0o, uncertain Syrian mint, 255 - 256 A.D.; obverse IMP C P LIC VALERIANVS P F AVG, radiate, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse RESTITVT ORIENTIS (to the restorer of the East), turreted female (Oriens) standing right, presenting wreath to Valerian, standing left, wearing military attire, spear vertical in left hand; $30.00 (26.40)


Valerian I, October 253 - c. June 260 A.D.

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In 256 A.D., the cities in the Roman Empire begin to build walls as the defense of the frontiers collapsed. The Goths invaded Asia Minor, Dacia was lost, and they appeared at the walls of Thessalonica. The Franks crossed the Rhine. The Alamanni penetrated to Milan. In Africa, the Berbers massacred Roman colonists. King Shapur I invaded Mesopotamia and Syria and plundered Antioch, Zeugma, and Dura-Europos.
RS90065. Billon antoninianus, Gbl MIR 1687e (Samosata), SRCV III 9995, RIC V 293 (Antioch), RSC IV 276 (Antioch), Hunter IV 76, Cunetio 851 (39 spec.), VF, well centered on a broad flan, porous surfaces, tiny edge cracks, tiny encrustations, weight 3.788 g, maximum diameter 21.2 mm, die axis 180o, uncertain Syria mint, 255 - 258 A.D.; obverse IMP C P LIC VALERIANVS P F AVG, radiate, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse VIRTVS AVGG (valor of the two emperors), Valerian and Gallienus standing confronted; Valerian on left, scepter in right hand, globe in left hand; Gallienus on right offering Victory to Valerian, transverse spear in left hand; $30.00 (26.40)


Valerian I, October 253 - c. June 260 A.D.

Click for a larger photo
In 256 A.D., the cities in the Roman Empire begin to build walls as the defense of the frontiers collapsed. The Goths invaded Asia Minor, Dacia was lost, and they appeared at the walls of Thessalonica. The Franks crossed the Rhine. The Alamanni penetrated to Milan. In Africa, the Berbers massacred Roman colonists. King Shapur I invaded Mesopotamia and Syria and plundered Antioch, Zeugma, and Dura-Europos.
RS90005. Billon antoninianus, Gbl MIR 1687e (Samosata), SRCV III 9995, RIC V-1 293 (Antioch), RSC IV 276 (Antioch), Hunter IV 76, Cunetio 851 (39 spec.), aVF, slightly off center, porous/grainy, weight 4.090 g, maximum diameter 20.2 mm, die axis 0o, uncertain Syria mint, 255 - 258 A.D.; obverse IMP C P LIC VALERIANVS P F AVG, radiate, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse VIRTVS AVGG (valor of the two emperors), Valerian and Gallienus standing confronted; Valerian on left, scepter in right hand, globe in left hand; Gallienus on right offering Victory to Valerian, transverse spear in left hand; $13.69 (12.05)







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Catalog current as of Saturday, October 19, 2019.
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Samosata