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Home>Catalog>RomanCoins>TheSeveranPeriod>Caracalla PAGE 1/4123»»»

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.


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)=Schφnert-Geiss Augusta Traiana 300, SNG Cop -, BMC Thrace -, Nice F, weight 15.539 g, maximum diameter 27.6 mm, die axis 0o, Augusta Traiana 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; $250.00 (€187.50)

Caracalla, 28 January 198 - 8 April 217 A.D., Philippopolis, Thrace
Click for a larger photo Wandering the world in a panther-drawn chariot, Dionysus rode ahead of the maenads and satyrs, who sang loudly and danced, flushed with wine. They were profusely garlanded with ivy, and held the thyrsus, a staff topped with a pinecone, a symbol of the immortality of his believers. Everywhere he went he taught men how to cultivate vines, and the mysteries of his cult. Whoever stood in his way and refused to revere him was punished with madness.
RP68934. Bronze assarion, Varbanov III 1551 (R6), Mouchmov Philip 425, SNG Cop -, BMC Thrace -, SNG Fitz -, SNG Hunt -, SNG Milan -, Lindgren -, et. al. -, VF, scratch on reverse, weight 3.191 g, maximum diameter 18.3 mm, die axis 225o, Philippopolis mint, obverse M AYP KAI − ANTΩNEINO (NE ligate), bare-headed draped and cuirassed bust right; reverse ΦIΛIΠΠOΠOΛEI,TΩN (ending in exergue), Dionysos reclining half-left on panther walking right, thyrsos in right, resting on left elbow on panther's back; ex Gorney & Mosch auction 215, part of lot 3645; rare; $225.00 (€168.75)

Click for a larger photo In 193, Laodicea was sacked by the governor of Syria, Pescennius Niger, in his revolt against Septimius Severus. In 194, Septimius Severus reorganized Syria into five new provinces. One of these, Coele-Syria, including all of northern Syria, briefly had its capital in Laodicea before reverting to Antioch. Septimius sought to punish Antioch for having supported Pescennius Niger. Septimius Severus endowed Laodicea with four colonnaded streets, baths, a theater, a hippodrome, numerous sanctuaries and other public buildings in the city. Laodicea was a key strategic seaport for Roman Syria.
RS68071. Silver denarius, SRCV II 6822, RIC IV 337d, RSC III 168c, EF, nice boy portrait, weight 3.654 g, maximum diameter 19.4 mm, die axis 45o, Laodicea ad Mare (Latakia, Syria) mint, 198 A.D.; obverse IMP C M AVR ANTON AVG P TR P, laureate, draped and cuirassed bust right, from behind; reverse MONETA AVGG, Moneta standing left, scales in right, cornucopia in left; scarce; $220.00 (€165.00)

Caracalla, 28 January 198 - 8 April 217 A.D., Hieropolis, Cyrrhestica, Syria
Click for a larger photo In the 3rd century, Hieropolis was the capital of Euphratensis province and one of the great cities of Syria. Procopius called it the greatest in that part of the world. It was, however, ruinous when Julian collected his troops there before marching to his defeat and death in Mesopotamia.
SH57096. Silver tetradrachm, Prieur 926, aVF, weight 14.807 g, maximum diameter 25.5 mm, die axis 0o, Hieropolis mint, 215 - 217 A.D.; obverse AYT KM A − ANTΩNINOC C−E−B, laureate head right; reverse ∆HMAPX EΞ YΠATO CTO ∆, eagle standing facing, head right, wings open, wreath in beak, lion walking right between legs; apt stern portrait of the monstrous emperor; scarce; $210.00 (€157.50)

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 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; $200.00 (€150.00)

Caracalla, 28 January 198 - 8 April 217 A.D., Hadrianopolis, Thrace
Click for a larger photo The MFA Boston coin, accession number 62.428 has the same reverse type but was struck with a different reverse die and an obverse with a much older, bearded, laureate, draped and cuirassed bust right, seen from behind. We did not find any other Caracalla type from Hadrianopolis with this heroic bust obverse.
RP68427. Bronze AE 28, apparently unpublished; cf. MFA Boston 62.428 (leg, bust), Jurukova -, Varbanov -, Moushmov -, SNG Cop -, SNG Milan -, BMC Thrace -, Lindgren -, VF, centered, weight 13.324 g, maximum diameter 28.3 mm, die axis 45o, Hadrianopolis Thrace mint, obverse AYT K M AYPH ANTΩNINOX, laureate, heroic bust right, aegis on left shoulder; reverse A∆PIAN−OΠOΛIT,ΩN, Hades-Serapis seated left on throne without back, kalathos on head, reaching with his right to Cerberus (his three-headed hellhound) at his feet, long scepter vertical behind in left; extremely rare, possibly unique ; $200.00 (€150.00)

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, Bulgarian 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 22, 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 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, right foot and rudder on a small prow left, cornucopia in left; scarce; $180.00 (€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; $165.00 (€123.75)

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; $160.00 (€120.00)

Click for a larger photo It's estimated that in 200 A.D. the worldwide human population was about 257 million.
RS68059. Silver denarius, RIC IV 351b, RSC III 573a, BMCRE V 703, VF, well centered, edge cracks, weight 3.198 g, maximum diameter 20.7 mm, die axis 0o, Laodicea ad Mare (Latakia, Syria) mint, 199 A.D.; obverse ANTONINVS AVGVSTVS, laureate and draped older boy's bust right, from behind; reverse SECVRIT ORBIS, Securitas seated left, scepter vertical in right, propping head on left hand, left elbow on back of throne; scarce; $150.00 (€112.50)



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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 Thursday, April 17, 2014.
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Roman Coins of Caracalla