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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Roman Coins ▸ Constantinian Era ▸ ConstansView Options:  |  |  | 

Constans, 9 September 337 - 19 January 350 A.D.

Constans was the youngest son of Constantine I and Fausta. Born around 320, Constans inherited part of the Western Empire upon its division among the sons of Constantine. In 340, his brother, Constantine II, invaded his territory but was defeated and killed leaving Constans in total control of the West. In 350, however, the general Magnentius rebelled and Constans fled as his legions switched sides. He was overtaken and killed while trying to escape to Spain.


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The reverse legend translates, "Happy Times Restored." Happy times would not last for Constans. This coinage was among his last issues before his general Magnentius rebelled and had him killed.
RL71445. Bronze AE 3, RIC VIII Siscia 244, LRBC1136, Voetter 31, Choice EF, weight 1.982 g, maximum diameter 18.2 mm, die axis 180o, 2nd officina, Siscia (Sisak, Croatia) mint, 348 - 350 A.D.; obverse D N CONSTA-NS P F AVG, pearl-diademed, draped and cuirassed bust right; reverse FEL TEMP REPARATIO (happy times restored), Constans standing left in Galley, labarum in left, Phoenix on globe in right hand, Victory steering at stern, BSIS followed by control-mark in ex; $125.00 (€108.75)


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The reverse may advertise the resettlement and protection of Christian Goths in 348. Persecuted by the Gothic chieftain Athanaric, Wulfila obtained permission from Constantius II to migrate with his flock of converts to Moesia. They settled near Nicopolis ad Istrum.
RL68274. Bronze AE 2, RIC VIII Constantinople 92, Choice VF, excellent centering, nice green patina, weight 3.440 g, maximum diameter 22.3 mm, die axis 0o, 5th officina, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, 348 - 351 A.D.; obverse D N CONSTANS P F AVG, diademed, draped and cuirassed bust left holding globe; reverse FEL TEMP REPARATIO (happy times restored), soldier advancing right, head turned back, leading small barbarian from hut beneath tree with right hand, spear in left with point between legs, Γ above, CONSE* in ex; $95.00 (€82.65)


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The RIC lists this type as common but this is only the third coin of Constans with this reverse type handled by Forum.
RL68789. Bronze AE 3, RIC VIII Rome 11, LRBC 588, VF, attractive green patina, weight 1.331 g, maximum diameter 15.9 mm, die axis 180o, 4th officina, Rome mint, 9 Sep 337 - spring 340 A.D.; obverse D N FL CONS-TANS AVG, rosette-diademed, draped and cuirassed bust right; reverse SECVRI-TAS REIP, Securitas standing right holding scepter in right and leaning left elbow on column, R clover leaf Q in exergue; rare; $85.00 (€73.95)


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RIC lists this type as scarce, however, we believe it is rare.
RL56550. Bronze AE 3, RIC VIII Rome 13, LRBC 588, aVF, weight 1.577 g, maximum diameter 16.1 mm, die axis 0o, 3rd officina, Rome mint, 337 - 340 A.D.; obverse D N FL CONSTANS AVG, rosette-diademed, draped and cuirassed bust right; reverse SECVRI-TAS REIP, Securitas standing facing, head right, long scepter in right, leaning with left elbow on column, R leaf T in ex; rare; $70.00 (€60.90)


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This type, with the emperor holding a Victory on Globe, is only listed as an AE 3 (17-19 mm diameter).
RL57035. Bronze AE 2, Unpublished(?); cf. RIC VIII Thessalonica 122, LRBC 1649 (AE 3), VF, a little rough, weight 4.384 g, maximum diameter 22.9 mm, die axis 0o, Thessalonica mint, 348 - 350 A.D.; obverse D N CONSTA-NS P F AVG, pearl-diademed, draped and cuirassed bust right, A behind; reverse FEL TEMP REPARATIO (happy times restored), Constans standing left on galley, Victory on globe in right hand, labarum (chi rho Christogram standard) in left, Victory seated in stern steering ship, A in left field, TSA in exergue; $70.00 (€60.90)


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Constans, Constantine's youngest son, inherited part of the Western Empire. In 340, Constantine II, his brother, invaded his territory but was killed leaving Constans in total control of the West. In 350, however, his general Magnentius rebelled. Constans tried to escape but overtaken and killed.
RL64020. Bronze AE 2, RIC VIII Thessalonica 116, VF, weight 4.081 g, maximum diameter 23.5 mm, die axis 180o, Thessalonica (Salonika, Greece) mint, 348 - 350 A.D.; obverse D N CONSTANS P F AVG, pearl-diademed, draped and cuirassed bust right, globe in right; reverse FEL TEMP REPARATIO (happy times restored), soldier standing left, spearing horseman who has fallen to his hands and knees and is wearing a pointed (Parthian) cap, TSΓ* in ex; $60.00 (€52.20)


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In 347, the Gothic bishop, missionary and translator Ulfilas (Wulfila) obtained permission from Constantius II to immigrate with his flock of converts to Moesia and settle near Nicopolis ad Istrum. There, he invented the Gothic alphabet and translated the Bible from Greek to Gothic.
RB73682. Billon reduced centenionalis, RIC VIII Siscia 181, LRBC I 789, Cohen VII 128, SRCV V 18579, VF, earthen encrustations, weight 1.255 g, maximum diameter 15.6 mm, die axis 0o, 2nd officina, Siscia (Sisak, Croatia) mint, 347 A.D.; obverse CONSTAN-S P F AVG, laurel and rosette-diademed, draped and cuirassed bust right; reverse VICTOR-IA AVGG, Victory walking left, looking right, raising wreath in each hand, Christogram (Chi-Rho monogram of Christ) in right field, *BSIS* in exergue; ex Forum (2007); rare type; $50.00 (€43.50)


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Unusual FL CONSTANTIS BEA C obverse legend.
BB70658. Bronze AE 3, RIC VII Siscia 238, VF, weight 1.614 g, maximum diameter 16.9 mm, die axis 45o, Siscia (Sisak, Croatia) mint, 335 - 336 A.D.; obverse FL CONSTANTIS BEA C, laureate, draped and cuirassed bust right; reverse GLORIA EXERCITVS, two soldiers standing facing, heads turned inward confronted, two standards in center between them, each holds a spear in outer hand and rests inner hand on grounded shield, •ASIS• in exergue; from the Butte College Foundation, ex Lindgren; scarce (RIC R4); $35.00 (€30.45)


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Around 350, Pope Julius I declared that Christ's birth would be celebrated on December 25. This was in Rome, while in Eastern Christianity the birth of Jesus was already celebrated in connection with the Epiphany on January 6. Even in the West, the January 6 celebration of the nativity of Jesus seems to have continued until after 380. The December 25 celebration was imported into the East later: in Antioch by John Chrysostom towards the end of the 4th century, probably in 388, and in Alexandria only in the following century.
RL71497. Bronze AE 3, RIC VIII Siscia 244, VF, green patina, earthen encrustation, weight 2.592 g, maximum diameter 18.9 mm, die axis 180o, 4th officina, Siscia (Sisak, Croatia) mint, 348 - 350 A.D.; obverse D N CONSTANS P F AVG, pearl-diademed, draped and cuirassed bust right; reverse FEL TEMP REPARATIO (happy times restored), Constans standing left in Galley, labarum in left, Phoenix on globe in right hand, at stern Victory steering, ∆SIS and control-mark in ex; $34.00 (€29.58)


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During this period A's were frequently engraved with open tops and looked like H's.
BB70656. Bronze AE 3, RIC VIII Siscia 185, VF, well centered, green patina, weight 1.618 g, maximum diameter 16.1 mm, die axis 180o, 1st officina, Siscia (Sisak, Croatia) mint, 347 - 348 A.D.; obverse CONSTANS P F AVG, rosette-diademed, draped and cuirassed bust right; reverse VICTORIAE DD AVGG Q NN, two Victories standing confronted, each raising a wreath and holding a palm frond, •ASIS• in exergue; from the Butte College Foundation, ex Lindgren; $32.00 (€27.84)







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OBVERSE LEGENDS

CONSTANSAVG
CONSTANSAVGVSTVS
CONSTANSCAESAR
CONSTANSPFAVG
DNCONSTANSPFAVG
FLCONSTANSNOBCAES
FLCONSTANTISBEAC
FLIVLCONSTANSAVG
FLIVLCONSTANSNOBC
FLIVLCONSTANSNOBCAES
FLIVLCONSTANSPERPAVG
FLIVLCONSTANSPFAVG
FLIVLCONSTANSPIVSFELIXAVG


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.M. 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).
Milchev, S. The Coins of Constantine the Great. (Sophia, 2007).
Sear, D.R. Roman Coins and Their Values, Volume 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, 211).
Sear, D.R. 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).
Voetter, O. Die Miinzen der romischen Kaiser, Kaiserinnen und Caesaren von Diocletianus bis Romulus: Katalog der Sammlung Paul Gerin. (Vienna, 1921).

Catalog current as of Thursday, July 30, 2015.
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Roman Coins of Constans