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Home>Catalog>RomanCoins>TheSeveranPeriod>Caracalla PAGE 1/3123»»»

Caracalla, 28 January 198 - 8 April 217 A.D.

Marcus Aurelius Antoninus, better known as Caracalla, was the son of Septimius Severus and Julia Domna, born in 188 A.D. He was named Caesar in 196 and Augustus in 198. Shortly before his death, Severus advised his sons, "Agree with each other, give money to the soldiers and scorn all other men." But the brothers hated each other and soon Caracalla had Geta murdered and massacred thousands suspected of supporting him. Although a capable military commander, the actual running of the government was left to his mother. He gradually slipped more and more into paranoia and delusions of grandeur before being murdered on his way to an Eastern campaign aimed at fulfilling his belief that he was the reincarnation of Alexander the Great.


Click for a larger photo The reverse legend abbreviates, "Consul ludos saeculares fecit" (Consul, he made the secular games), commemorating the Ludi Saeculares (Secular Games) of 204. Liber and Hercules were the favored deities at Severus' birthplace, Lepcis Magna.
RS73196. Silver denarius, RSC III 50, RIC IV 74(a) (R2), BMCRE V 275A, SRCV II 6796, VF, nice boy portrait, centered, two small lamination defects on the reverse, weight 3.238 g, maximum diameter 19.7 mm, die axis 225o, Rome mint, 204 A.D.; obverse ANTONINVS PIVS AVG, laureate and draped young bust right; reverse COS LVDOS SAECVL FEC, Bacchus (or Liber) and Hercules standing confronted, Bacchus feeding panther from cup in right and holding thyrsus in left, Hercules resting right hand on grounded club, lion skin on left arm; scarce; $500.00 SALE PRICE $450.00

Caracalla, 28 January 198 - 8 April 217 A.D., Augusta Traiana, Thrace
Click for a larger photo Augusta Traiana (Stara Zagora, Bulgaria today) was founded by Trajan, c. 106 A.D. During 2nd - 3rd century A.D., it was the second largest city in Roman Thrace, after Philippopolis, and was fortified by strong walls. The city struck bronze coins from time of Marcus Aurelius to Gallienus.
SH68297. Bronze AE 28, Varbanov 1095 (R4)=Schönert-Geiss Augusta Traiana 300, SNG Cop -, BMC Thrace -, Nice F, weight 15.539 g, maximum diameter 27.6 mm, die axis 0o, Augusta Traiana (Stara Zagora, Bulgaria) mint, obverse AYT K M AYP CEYH ANTΩONINOC, laureate and cuirassed bust right, from b; reverse AYΓOYCTHC TPAIANHC, city-gate flanked by two crenellated towers, a third crenellated tower in the center behind the gate; $225.00 SALE PRICE $203.00

Caracalla, 28 January 198 - 8 April 217 A.D., Tyre, Phoenicia
Click for a larger photo The murex shell was the source of a dye which became known at Tyrian purple.
RP73068. Silver tetradrachm, Prieur 1547, Bellinger 303, SNG Cop -, BMC Phoenicia -, gVF, weight 13.362 g, maximum diameter 25.3 mm, die axis 0o, Tyre mint, Cos. 4, 215 - 217 A.D.; obverse AVT KAI AN-TWNINOC CE, laureate head right; reverse •∆HMAPX •EΞ •YΠATOCTO•∆•, eagle standing facing on club, wings spread, tail and head left, wreath in beak, murex shell between legs; $200.00 SALE PRICE $180.00 ON RESERVE

Caracalla, 28 January 198 - 8 April 217 A.D., Odessos, Moesia Inferior
Click for a larger photo According to the Bulgarian Orthodox Church, Ampliatus, a follower of Saint Andrew preached in Odessos in 56 A.D. Ten early basilicas and a monophysite monastery indicate that Odessos was an early Christian center. The supreme god of Odessos was, however, the Thracian god Darzalas.
RP64031. Bronze AE 26, Varbanov I 4376; BMC Thrace p. 138, 14; AMNG I/II 2283 var (rev legend break),, gVF, nice green patina, weight 8.849 g, maximum diameter 26.3 mm, die axis 180o, Odessos (Varna, Bulgaria) mint, obverse AYT K M AYP CEYH−POC ANTΩNIN−OC, laureate head right; reverse O∆HCCEITΩN, the Great God of Odessos standing left, wearing kalathos, patera in right over flaming altar at feet, cornucopia in left; ex Helios Numismatik auction 7 (12 Dec 2011), lot 470; $180.00 SALE PRICE $162.00

Caracalla, 28 January 198 - 8 April 217 A.D., Anchialus, Thrace
Click for a larger photo When the Odrysian kingdom was abolished in 45 A.D., Anchialos (Pomorie, Bulgaria today) became part of the Roman province of Thrace. It was formally proclaimed a city under Trajan. Anchialos thrived in the 2nd and 3rd centuries serving as the most important import and export station of Thrace and acquired the appearance of a Roman city under the Severan Dynasty.
RP63758. Bronze AE 28, AMNG II 526, Varbanov II 414 var (obv legend), Choice VF, nice green patina, excellent portrait, weight 13.881 g, maximum diameter 27.9 mm, die axis 225o, Anchialus (Pomorie, Bulgaria) mint, obverse AY K M AYP ANTΩNEINO, laureate, draped and cuirassed bust right, from behind; reverse OYΛΠIANΩN AΓXIAΛEΩN (N in exergue), Tyche standing left, rudder in right hand, right foot and rudder on a small prow left, cornucopia in left; scarce; $160.00 SALE PRICE $144.00

Click for a larger photo The motto ‘Salus Generis Humani,’ meaning safety of the human race and the health of humanity, is engraved on a pin presented to graduates at Columbia University who have successfully completed the master’s degree in nursing.
RS73529. Silver denarius, RIC IV 350, SRCV II 6883, BMCRE V 701, RSC III 558a, VF, tight flan cuts off part of the reverse legend, weight 2.914 g, maximum diameter 19.4 mm, die axis 0o, Laodicea ad Mare (Latakia, Syria) mint, 200 A.D.; obverse ANTONINVS AVGVSTVS, laureate, draped and cuirassed bust right, from behind; reverse SAL GEN HVM (Salus Generis Humani), Salus standing left, extending right hand to kneeling woman, long vertical snake-wreathed scepter in left; $150.00 SALE PRICE $135.00

Click for a larger photo Liberality is personified by the image of a woman, holding in one hand a counting board, or square tablet with a handle on which are cut a certain number of holes. These boards were used to quickly count the proper number of coins or other items for distribution to each person. It appears they were held over a container, covered with coins and the excess swept away back into the container. The proper number of coins would fill the holes and then would be dumped out to the recipient. On coins this symbol indicated the prince had given to the people money, grain, or other articles of consumption. In the other hand she holds a cornucopia, to indicate the abundance of wheat contained in the public graineries.
RS73547. Silver denarius, RIC IV 136b; RSC III 124; BMCRE V p. 209, 286; Hunter III 41; cf. SRCV II 6815 (AVG VI), Choice VF, excellent portrait, small flan crack, surfaces a little frosty, weight 3.452 g, maximum diameter 19.4 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 201 - 206 A.D.; obverse ANTONINVS PIVS AVG, laureate and draped bust right; reverse LIBERALITAS AVGG V, Liberalitas standing slightly left, head left, counting board in right, cornucopia in left; $150.00 SALE PRICE $135.00

Caracalla, 28 January 198 - 8 April 217 A.D., Tarsus, Cilicia
Click for a larger photo Our search of numerous references and auction results found numerous coins with various reverse types struck with the same obverse die. We also found numerous examples with a similar reverse but with a different obverse legend and the reverse legend with A∆P MHT. We did not find another example of this variant.
RP57158. Bronze tetrassarion, apparently unpublished; SNG BnF -, Lindgren -, BMC Lycaonia -, SNGvA -; cf. SNG Levante 1058 (legends) & 1067 (same obv die, different rev type), aF, weight 18.919 g, maximum diameter 35.1 mm, die axis 0o, Cilicia, Tarsus mint, c. 209 - 217 A.D.; obverse AYT KAI M AYP CEYEPOC ANTΩNEINOC, bust right, in robes of demiourgos, Π − Π; reverse ANTΩNEINIANH CEYHP A∆PIA, emperor standing left, sacrificing over altar, wearing toga, TAPCOY/Λ N in ex, A / M / K left, Γ / B right; 35 mm medallic coin!; extremely rare variant; $145.00 SALE PRICE $131.00

Caracalla, 28 January 198 - 8 April 217 A.D., Marcianopolis, Moesia Inferior
Click for a larger photo Renamed by Trajan after his sister, Ulpia Marciana, Marcianopolis was an important strategic center for centuries. The city was repeatedly destroyed by barbarian raids (Goths, Huns, Avars and others) but also was repeatedly rebuilt and prospered. During Valens' conflict with the Goths, Marcianopolis was a temporary capital of the empire and the largest city in Thrace. An Avar raid destroyed the city in 614 or 615.
RP67780. Bronze AE 23, H-J Marcianopolis 6.18.36.13, Varbanov I 905 (R3), AMNG I/I 631, SNG Cop -, VF, broad flan for the type, nice dark green patina, weight 6.801 g, maximum diameter 22.6 mm, die axis 45o, Markianopolis (Devnya, Bulgaria) mint, 119 - 217 A.D.; obverse AY K M AYP ANT−ΩNINOC Π AY−Γ (final Γ below the bust), laureate head right; reverse MAPKIANOΠΛITΩN (AP ligate), Homonoia standing slightly facing, head left, kalathos on head, sacrificing from patera in right over flaming altar at feet on left, cornucopia in right; $145.00 SALE PRICE $131.00

Caracalla, 28 January 198 - 8 April 217 A.D., Pautalia, Thrace
Click for a larger photo Strymon, son of Oceanus and Tethys, was a river god and king of Thrace. By the muses Euterpe or Calliope, he became the father of Rhesus, Brangas, and Olynthus, and by Neaera of Evadne.
RP63246. Bronze AE 29, Apparently unpublished variety; cf. Ruzicka 632 (obv legend, armed bust left, etc.), Varbanov II 5186 (obv leg, laureate head), SNG Cop -, BMC Thrace, F, weight 16.33 g, maximum diameter 29.2 mm, die axis 45o, Pautalia (Kyustendil, Bulgaria) mint, obverse AYT K M AY − ANTΩNEINOC, laureate, draped and cuirassed bust right, from behind; reverse OYΛΠIAC (above), ΠAYTAΛIAC (in exergue), river-god Strymon reclining left, head right, left arm resting on jug on its side from which water flows; rare; $135.00 SALE PRICE $122.00



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Obverse legends:

ANTONINVSAVGVSTV
ANTONINVSAVGVSTVS
ANTONINVSPIVSAVG
ANTONINVSPIVSAVGBRIT
ANTONINVSPIVSAVGGERM
ANTONINVSPIVSFELAVG (ALSO USED BY ELAGABALUS)
DIVOANTONINOMAGNO
IMPCAEMAVRANTAVGPTRP
IMPCAESMAVRELANTONINVSAVG
IMPANTONINETGETACAESAVGFIL
IMPCMAVRANTONAVGPTRP
IMPCMAVRANTONINVSAVG
IMPCMAVRANTONAVGPTRP
IMPCMAVRANTONINVSAVG
IMPCMAVRANTONINVSPONTAVG
IMPMAVRANTONINVSPIVSAVGPMTRPXIII
MAVRANTCAESPONTIF
MAVRANTONCAESPONTIF
MAVRANTONINVSCAES
MAVRELANTONINVSPIVSAVG
MAVRELANTONINVSPIVSAVGBRIT
MAVRELANTONINVSPIVSAVGGERM




Average well preserved denarius weight 3.20 grams.

Average well preserved antoninianus weight 5.15 grams.


Catalog current as of Saturday, March 28, 2015.
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Roman Coins of Caracalla