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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Roman Coins ▸ Constantinian Era ▸ Constantine IIView Options:  |  |  |   

Constantine II, 22 May 337 - March or April 340 A.D.

Constantine II was the son of Constantine I, the eldest with his second wife, Fausta. He was born in Arles (which was renamed Constantia in his honor in 328, explaining the CON mintmarks for Arles) and was made Caesar before he was a year old in 316 A.D. Upon his father's death, Constantine II inherited the Western part of the empire. After quarreling with his brother Constans, he invaded his territory, only to be killed in an ambush near Aquileia. His coins often include "IVN" in the legend, an abbreviation for junior.


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Most references describe the reverse on this very rare type as the plan of a Roman camp. But experts disagree and there are many theories. One possibility is that the reverse depicts what Constantine saw in his vision; except the god on the coin appears to be Sol, not Christ. One explanation for this is that he did not come to understand the true meaning his vision until just prior to his battle with Licinius (when he may have had another vision).
SH32718. Billon centenionalis, RIC VII Thessalonica 71, aVF, weight 2.745 g, maximum diameter 18.4 mm, die axis 180o, 2nd officina, Thessalonica (Salonika, Greece) mint, as caesar, 319 A.D.; obverse CONSTANTINVS IVN NOB C, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse VIRTVS EXERC (courage of the army), cross shaped pattern, usually described as the plan of a Roman camp, Sol holding globe and raising hand standing above center, TSB in exergue; very rare reverse; SOLD


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SH28377. Billon reduced follis, RIC VII London -, unlisted bust type, Choice aEF, weight 3.005 g, maximum diameter 19.3 mm, die axis 135o, 1st officina, Londinium (London, England) mint, as caesar, 323 - 324 A.D.; obverse CONSTANTINVS IVN N C, laureate and cuirassed bust left, Victory on globe in right hand; reverse BEATA TRA-NQLITAS, globe on altar inscribed VOT/IS / XX, three stars above, PLON in exergue; extremely rare; SOLD


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This type is apparently unpublished and this is the only example of the type known to Forum. This reverse was used for very rare (both R5) issues of Licinius I and Licinius II Caesar. CNG e-auction 368, lot 496, is Constantine II with this same reverse, also 5th officina, but with Constantine II on the obverse left holding a Victory on globe and mappa.
RL76392. Billon centenionalis, apparently unpublished, cf. RIC VII Siscia 116 - 117 (for obv. type) and 138 - 139 (for rev. type, issues of the Licinii), EF, excellent portrait, both sides slightly off-center, left side of reverse legend weak, some porosity, a few light marks, weight 2.773 g, maximum diameter 19.0 mm, die axis 180o, 5th officina, Siscia (Sisak, Croatia) mint, as caesar, 320 A.D.; obverse CONSTANTINVS IVN NOB C, laureate and cuirassed bust left; reverse VIRTVS EXERCIT (courage of the army), vexillum inscribed VOT / XX in two lines, two seated barbarian captives back-to-back flanking base, Christogram (Chi-Rho monogram) left, ESIS star in exergue; ex Scott Collection; extremely rare; SOLD


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SH49573. Billon centenionalis, FORVM 28377, RIC VII London -, unlisted bust type, Choice VF, weight 2.582 g, maximum diameter 19.9 mm, die axis 180o, 1st officina, Londinium (London, England) mint, as caesar, 323 - 324 A.D.; obverse CONSTANTINVS IVN N C, laureate and cuirassed bust left, Victory on globe in right hand; reverse BEATA TRANQLITAS (blessed tranquility), globe on altar inscribed VOT/IS / XX, three stars above, PLON in exergue; extremely rare; SOLD


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RL57024. Billon centenionalis, RIC VII Arles 315, LRBC 306, EF, desert patina, attractive!, weight 3.080 g, maximum diameter 20.3 mm, die axis 180o, 3rd officina, Constantia-Arelatum (Arles, France) mint, as caesar, 327 A.D.; obverse CONSTANTINVS IVN NOB C, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust left; reverse VIRTVS CAESS (the valor of the two princes), campgate with four turrets and open gates, S - F at sides, ARLT in exergue; SOLD


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RL28396. Billon centenionalis, RIC VII Trier 274, Choice EF, weight 3.371 g, maximum diameter 19.2 mm, die axis 180o, 2nd officina, Treveri (Trier, Germany) mint, as caesar, 320 A.D.; obverse CONSTANTINVS IVN NOB C, laureate bust left in consular robe, Victory on globe in right, mappa in left; reverse VIRTVS EXERCIT (courage of the army), standard inscribed VOT / XX flanked by a captive on each side, STR in exergue; full circle centering; very rare (RIC R4); SOLD


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In 320, Licinius reneged on the religious freedom promised by the Edict of Milan, and began a new persecution of Christians in the Eastern Roman Empire. He destroyed churches, imprisoned Christians and confiscated their property.
BB72283. Billon centenionalis, cf. CGB Mail Bid Sale 55 (17 October 2012), lot 329; otherwise unpublished; RIC VIII -, Cohen -, Choice gVF, 2nd officina, Ticinum (Pavia, Italy) mint, as caesar, 320 A.D.; obverse CONSTANTINVS IVN NOB C, laureate and cuirassed bust left, Victory on globe presenting wreath in right, mappa in left; reverse VIRTVS EXERCIT (courage of the army), vexillum inscribed VOT / X X in two lines, two seated barbarian captives back-to-back flanking base, hands of captive on left bound behind back, Christogram in left field, crescent horns up in right field, ST in exergue; extremely rare variant, not in RIC, only the 2nd example known to Forum; SOLD


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BB20512. Billon reduced follis, RIC VII Ticinum 81, gVF, weight 2.413 g, maximum diameter 19.8 mm, die axis 0o, 2nd officina, Ticinum (Pavia, Italy) mint, as caesar, 317 - 318 A.D.; obverse CONSTANTINVS IVN NOB CAES, draped and cuirassed bust right, from behind; reverse CLARITAS R-EIPVBLICAE, Sol advancing left, radiate, raising right hand commanding the sun to rise, whip in leftP in left field, ST in exergue; nice miniature portrait; rare (RIC R3); SOLD


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Constantine II was about eight years old when this coin was minted. Here he is draped and cuirassed as a powerful child Caesar with the world in his hands!
RL77197. Billon centenionalis, RIC VII Trier 353 (R2) corr. (no cuirass), SRCV V 17154, Cohen VII 23, Hunter V -, Choice VF, small closed flan crack, weight 3.023 g, maximum diameter 19.1 mm, die axis 180o, 2nd officina, Treveri (Trier, Germany) mint, 322 A.D.; obverse CONSTANTINVS IVN NOB C, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust left, Victory on globe offering wreath in his right hand, mappa in his left hand; reverse BEATA TRANQVILLITAS (blessed tranquility), globe set on altar inscribed VO/TIS / XX in three lines, three stars above, PTR• in exergue; rare; SOLD


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Constantine Junior as Augustus.
RL13050. Billon reduced centenionalis, RIC VII Siscia 90, gVF, weight 1.276 g, maximum diameter 16.7 mm, die axis 180o, 1st officina, Siscia (Sisak, Croatia) mint, as Augustus, 337 - 340 A.D.; obverse CONSTANTINVS MAX AVG, diademed, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse GLORIA EXERCITVS (glory of the army), two soldiers standing facing, flanking labarum (chi-rho Christogram standard) in center, heads confronted, each holds spear in outer hand and rests inner hand on shield, ASIS and crescent in exergue; nice green patina; SOLD




  




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OBVERSE LEGENDS

CONSTANTINVSAVG
CONSTANTINVSIVNAVG
CONSTANTINVSIVNNC
CONSTANTINVSIVNNOBC
CONSTANTINVSIVNNOBCAES
CONSTANTINVSMAXAVG
CONSTANTINVSPFAVG
DNCONSTANTINVSIVNNOBCAES
DNFLCLCONSTANTINVSNOBC
FLCLCONSTANTINVSIVNNC
FLCLCONSTANTINVSPFAVG
IMPCONSTANTINVSAVG
VICCONSTANTINVSAVG


REFERENCES

Bastien, P. Le monnayage de l'atelier de Lyon. De la réouverture de l'atelier en 318 à la mort de Constantin (318-337). Numismatique Romaine XIII. (Wetteren, 1982).
Bruun, P. The Roman Imperial Coinage, Vol VII, Constantine and Licinius A.D. 313 - 337. (London, 1966).
Carson, R., P. Hill & J. Kent. Late Roman Bronze Coinage. (London, 1960).
Carson, R., H. Sutherland & J. Kent. The Roman Imperial Coinage, Vol VIII, The Family of Constantine I, A.D. 337 - 364. (London, 1981).
Cohen, H. Description historique des monnaies frappées sous l'Empire Romain, Vol. 7: Carausius to Constantine & sons. (Paris, 1888).
Depeyrot, G. Les monnaies d'or de Constantin II à Zenon (337-491). Moneta 5. (Wetteren, 1996).
Failmezger, V. Roman Bronze Coins From Paganism to Christianity, 294 - 364 A.D. (Washington D.C., 2002).
King, C. & D. Sear. Roman Silver Coins, Volume V, Carausius to Romulus Augustus. (London, 1987).
Milchev, S. The Coins of Constantine the Great. (Sophia, 2007).
Paolucci, R. & A. Zub. La monetazione di Aquileia Romana. (Padova, 2000).
Robinson, A. Roman Imperial Coins in the Hunter Coin Cabinet, University of Glasgow, Vol. V. Diocletian (Reform) to Zeno. (Oxford, 1982).
Sear, D. Roman Coins and Their Values, Vol. IV: The Tetrarchies and the Rise of the House of Constantine: The Collapse of Paganism and the Triumph of Christianity, Diocletian To Constantine I, AD 284 - 337. (London, 2011).
Sear, D. Roman Coins and Their Values, Vol. V: The Christian Empire: The Later Constantinian Dynasty and the Houses of Valentinian and Theodosius and Their Successors, Constantine II to Zeno, AD 337 - 491. (London, 2014).
Vagi, D. Coinage and History of the Roman Empire. (Sidney, 1999).
Voetter, O. Die Münzen der romischen Kaiser, Kaiserinnen und Caesaren von Diocletianus bis Romulus: Katalog der Sammlung Paul Gerin. (Vienna, 1921).

Catalog current as of Tuesday, December 11, 2018.
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Roman Coins of Constantine II