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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Roman Coins ▸ Roman Mints ▸ SamosataView 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 Atatürk 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.


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.
RA72577. Billon antoninianus, Göbl MIR 1687e (Samosata), SRCV III 9995, RIC V 293 (Antioch), RSC IV 276 (Antioch), Hunter IV 76, Choice EF, light corrosion, flan crack, weight 3.129 g, maximum diameter 22.5 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; $55.00 (€48.95)
 


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

Click for a larger photo
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.
RS64742. Billon antoninianus, Göbl MIR 1685l (Samosata), RSC IV 189 (Antioch), RIC V 287 (Antioch), SRCV III 9967 (uncertain Syrian mint), Choice gVF, excellent centering, good metal, weight 4.307 g, maximum diameter 19.8 mm, die axis 315o, 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; $50.00 (€44.50)
 


Hadrian, 11 August 117 - 10 July 138 A.D., Samosata, Commagene, Syria

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Samosata, meaning "sun," was an ancient city whose ruins existed at the modern city of Samsat, Adiyaman Province, Turkey until the site was flooded by the Atatürk Dam. -- wikipedia.org
RY78039. Bronze AE 21, RPC III 3417; SNG Cop 17; SNG München 375; BMC Galatia p. 118, 20; Butcher 8; SGICV 1235, F, well centered, porous, weight 4.573 g, maximum diameter 20.8 mm, die axis 180o, Samosata mint, 132 - 133 A.D.; obverse A∆PIANOC CEBAΣTOC, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right, from behind; reverse ΦΛA / CAMO / MHTPO / KOM, inscription in four lines within oak wreath; from the Butte College Foundation, ex Lindgren; $45.00 (€40.05)
 


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

Click for a larger photo
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.
RS64721. Billon antoninianus, Göbl MIR 1685l (Samosata), RSC IV 189 (Antioch), RIC V 287 (Antioch), SRCV III 9967 (uncertain Syrian mint), VF, excellent reverse, obverse porous, weight 3.321 g, maximum diameter 21.0 mm, die axis 180o, 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; $38.00 (€33.82)
 


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.
RS90039. Billon antoninianus, Göbl MIR 1687e (Samosata), SRCV III 9995, RIC V 293 (Antioch), RSC IV 276 (Antioch), Hunter IV 76, VF, well centered, toned, porous, weight 3.566 g, maximum diameter 19.7 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; $38.00 (€33.82)
 


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

Click for a larger photo
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.
RS90053. Billon antoninianus, Göbl MIR 1685l (Samosata), RSC IV 189 (Antioch), RIC V 287 (Antioch), SRCV III 9967 (uncertain Syrian mint), Choice VF, well centered, toned, porous, weight 3.080 g, maximum diameter 21.0 mm, die axis 180o, 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; $33.00 (€29.37)
 


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

Click for a larger photo
Pietas in traditional Latin usage expressed a complex, highly valued Roman virtue; a man or woman with pietas respected his or her responsibilities to the gods, family, other people, and entities (such as the state), and understood his or her place in society with respect to others.
RS90040. Silver antoninianus, Göbl MIR 1684e (Samosata), Hunter IV 73, SRCV III 9955, RIC V 285 (Antioch), RSC IV 152 (Antioch), gVF, well centered, toned, edge crack and small edge split, some porous spots, weight 3.401 g, maximum diameter 22.3 mm, die axis 45o, uncertain Syrian mint, 256 - 260 A.D.; obverse IMP C P LIC VALERIANVS P F AVG, radiate, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse PIETAS AVGG (to the piety of the two emperors), Emperors standing confronted, sacrificing at flaming altar in center, on left holding eagle-tipped scepter, on right holding parazonium; $32.00 (€28.48)
 


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

Click for a larger photo
In 258, Valerian put to death a number of church leaders, including Rome's bishop, Sixtus. Christians belonging to the nobility or the Roman Senate were deprived of their property and exiled. Thinking that the Christian had great hidden treasures, Valerian ordered the leading deacon, Laurentius, him to hand them over. Laurentius agreed but asked for three days to gather them to together. He assembled the poor, aged and sick in Rome and brought them before the emperor, saying "These are the true treasures of the church." Furious, Laurentius was ordered to suffer a slow and cruel death. On 10 August 258, Laurentius was scourged, beaten with irons, and had his joints dislocated. He was then placed on a grate over a fire and slowly roasted to death. Having lain there for some time, he is reported to have called out to the emperor a Latin couplet, "Assum est, inquit, versa et manduca" (This side is done, turn me over and have a bite). His executioner obliged and after he had been tormented for a considerable time, he finally lifted his eyes to heaven and with calmness yielded his spirit to God. Laurentius (Saint Lawrence) is the patron saint of comedians.
RS90034. Silver antoninianus, Göbl MIR 1684e (Samosata), Hunter IV 73, SRCV III 9955, RIC V 285 (Antioch), RSC IV 152 (Antioch), aVF, nice portrait, oval flan, weak reverse, weight 4.179 g, maximum diameter 22.6 mm, die axis 180o, uncertain Syrian mint, 256 - 260 A.D.; obverse IMP C P LIC VALERIANVS P F AVG, radiate, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse PIETAS AVGG (to the piety of the two emperors), Emperors standing confronted, sacrificing at altar in center, on left holding eagle-tipped scepter, on right holding parazonium; $28.00 (€24.92)
 


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

Click for a larger photo
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.

RIC assigns this issue to Antioch but MIR gives the issue to a second Eastern mint located at Samosata.
RS90000. Billon antoninianus, Göbl MIR 1700q (Samosata), RSC IV 190 (Antioch), RIC V 287 (Antioch), SRCV III 9967 (uncertain Syrian mint), VF, well centered on a tight flan, porous, weight 4.068 g, maximum diameter 19.5 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), Valerian (on right) and turreted female (the Orient) standing confronted, female presenting wreath, Valerian holding spear vertical in left, wreath above; $27.00 (€24.03)
 


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

Click for a larger photo
In 258, Valerian put to death a number of church leaders, including Rome's bishop, Sixtus. Christians belonging to the nobility or the Roman Senate were deprived of their property and exiled. Thinking that the Christian had great hidden treasures, Valerian ordered the leading deacon, Laurentius, him to hand them over. Laurentius agreed but asked for three days to gather them to together. He assembled the poor, aged and sick in Rome and brought them before the emperor, saying "These are the true treasures of the church." Furious, Laurentius was ordered to suffer a slow and cruel death. On 10 August 258, Laurentius was scourged, beaten with irons, and had his joints dislocated. He was then placed on a grate over a fire and slowly roasted to death. Having lain there for some time, he is reported to have called out to the emperor a Latin couplet, "Assum est, inquit, versa et manduca" (This side is done, turn me over and have a bite). His executioner obliged and after he had been tormented for a considerable time, he finally lifted his eyes to heaven and with calmness yielded his spirit to God. Laurentius (Saint Lawrence) is the patron saint of comedians.
RS90060. Silver antoninianus, Göbl MIR 1684e (Samosata), Hunter IV 73, SRCV III 9955, RIC V 285 (Antioch), RSC IV 152 (Antioch), gVF, toned, slightly oval flan, porous, weight 3.532 g, maximum diameter 21.7 mm, die axis 0o, uncertain Syrian mint, 256 - 260 A.D.; obverse IMP C P LIC VALERIANVS P F AVG, radiate, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse PIETAS AVGG (to the piety of the two emperors), Valerian and Gallienus standing confronting each other, facing center, sacrificing at flaming altar in center, togate, on left holding eagle-tipped scepter, on right holding parazonium; $26.00 (€23.14)
 




  



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Samosata