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ABM_Postumus.jpg
81 viewsPostumus, Principal Mint, sestertius, 260

IMP C M CASS LAT POST[...],Laureate, draped and cuirassed bust right
SALVS AVG, Salus standing right, feeding snake held in arms
Weight 15.49g

A very rare early issue with Postumus' full name given on the obverse - normally this only occurs on radiate double-sestertii. This is struck from the same obverse die as a gold medallion in Paris with a SALVS PROVINCIARVM reverse.
Adrianus
britannicus01.jpg
47 viewsAE sestertius. Struck under Claudius, circa 50-54 AD, uncertain eastern provincial mint located in the modern-day Balkans.
Obv : TI CLAVDIVS CAESAR AVG F BRITANNICVS, draped bust left.
Rev : - No legend, Mars advancing left, holding spear and shield, SC in fields. 35mm, 19.4g. Extremely Rare.

Ref : BMCRE 226
Cohen 2
RCV 1908, valued at $32,000 in Fine, which is a few multiples greater than any other sestertius issued during the several centuries the denomination was in use.
A large number of the surviving examples of this series (one may even suggest a majority of them), due to their rarity, have been subjected to modern alteration techniques such as smoothing, tooling, and repatination. As such, it's actually pleasant to see a bit of field roughness and a 'plain brown' patina of old copper on this example, evidence that it is just as ugly as it was the day it was last used in circulation back in Ancient Rome.
Britannicus, originally known as Germanicus after Claudius' older brother, was the emperor's original intended heir and natural son. Machinations by Agrippina II eventually saw Britannicus supplanted by her own son Nero, (by Lucius Domitius Ahenobarbus) who took the throne upon Claudius' suspicious death. Britannicus himself died a few years later, reportedly poisoned by his step-brother. The future emperor Titus and Britannicus were close friends, and Titus became quite ill and nearly died after eating from the same poisoned dish that killed Britannicus.
R. Smits, Numismatist for Numismall
Balck_and_blue_neckless.jpg
36 viewsROMAN BLUE & BLACK GLASS BEADS
Specifications: •Date: C, 5th-8th century AD, late Roman early Byzantine
•Size: 4 mm to 13 mm
•Condition: Nice selection of blue and black beads

Antonivs Protti
adadd.jpg
24 viewsCeltic, Bastarnae Tribe, Thrace, c. 220 - 160 B.C., Imitative of Macedonian Kingdom Type

The Bastarnae were an important ancient people of uncertain, but probably mixed Germanic-Celtic-Sarmatian, ethnic origin, who lived between the Danube and the Dnieper (Strabo, Geography, VII, 3,17) during the last centuries B.C. and early centuries A.D. The etymology of their name is uncertain, but may mean 'mixed-bloods' (compare 'bastard'), as opposed to their neighbours the East Germanic Scirii, the 'clean-' or 'pure-bloods.'

32899. Bronze AE 16, imitative of SNG Cop 1299 (Macedonian Kingdom, time of Philip V and Perseus, 221 - 168 B.C.), Fair/Fine, 2.168g, 16.3mm, obverse Celtic-style bust of river-god Strymon right; reverse Trident
Patrick O3
9e8WbRx57aNtBq3DSKi2mG4g8AZgdC.jpg
14 viewsAbbasid Governors, anonymous, AE fals (21mm, 3.71gm, 11h), Halab, AH 136. O: Kalima; below, large pellet left and annulet right; in margin, mint and date formula. R: At center, Kalima continued; in margin, Qur'an 9:33. Ilisch (1996) Resafa IV, p. 117, 221 (dated xx6); cf. ibid. 220 (dated 135) and 222 (date illegible, either 135 or 136); see also Nützel (1898) Berlin 2074 (dated 135 but mint illegible) and Shamma p. 89, 3 (dated xx5). Very Fine and extremely rare, olive green patina with areas of red sand encrustation. Date full and clear. Mint missing but clearly style of Halab, AH 135 and 136.Quant.Geek
Gordian_Antioch.jpg
32 viewsGordian III. A.D. 238-244. AR antoninianus. Antioch, A.D. 238/9. Superb EF, spectacular portrait nicely centered on a large flan with nearly full borders and excellent metalpaul1888
Trajan.jpg
65 viewsTrajan AR Denarius. Rome, AD 113-114. IMP TRAIANO OPTIMO AVG GER DAC P M TR P, laureate and draped bust right / COS VI P P SPQR, Trajan's column surmounted by statue of the emperor; at base, two eagles. RIC 307; BMCRE 522; RSC 115. 3.53g, 20mm, 6h.
Of all of the truly monumental buildings and commemorative structures which the emperor Trajan built, only one, the Columna Traiani, has survived in a reasonable state of completeness. Indeed, it appears almost identical in person as it does on coins, except that the statue of Trajan that originally surmounted it was replaced in 1588 with a statue of St. Paul. When completed, the column occupied a prominent place between two libraries, the Basilica Ulpia and the Temple of Trajan and Plotina. The column was massive: it was over 12 feet in diameter at its base, and rose to a height of nearly 130 feet. Its core was comprised of 34 blocks of Carrara white marble that were made hollow so as to accommodate a circular staircase of 185 steps. The most remarkable feature of the column, however, was its ornamentation, for the friezes on its exterior are some of the most inspiring works of art ever produced. Monumental in scope and execution, they record Trajan’s two Dacian campaigns, from 101-3 and 104-6. All told, there are more than 2,500 individually sculpted figures distributed among more than 150 scenes. The emperor himself is represented no less than fifty times – not a surprise considering his penchant for commemorative architecture and his pride in having added Dacia to the provinces of the empire. “ Source: NAC”

Ex Michael Kelly Collection of Roman Silver Coins
4 commentspaul1888
RPC_1555_and_5421_Julius_and_Augustus.jpg
2 Augustus and Divus Julius Caesar - 2 Provincials from Thessalonica39 viewsTop Coin:
Divus Julius Caesar and Augustus
AE20 of Thessalonika, Macedon

QEOC, laureate head of Julius Caesar right / QECCALONIKEWN, bare head of Augustus right.

Moushmov 6659, BMC 58, SGI 151, RPC 1551

Bottom Coin:
Augustus and Divus Julius Caesar.
AE 18 of Macedon, Thessalonica. Circa 38 BC.

SEBACTOC, bare head of Augustus right / QEOC, bare head of Julius Caesar right.

RPC 5421

I got these early in my collecting in a random lot of semi-cleaned coins. I was very proud of them at the time, and they are still among my favorites, because of the excitement I felt when I realized they were Julius Caesar and Augustus coins--my first of either of the first 2 Caesars.
RI0046
RI0047
Sosius
Vespasian_Aureus_3.jpg
10 Vespasian Aureus38 viewsVespasian, 69-79 AD
AV aureus (19mm, 7.11 gm, 7h). Lugdunum Mint, AD 71.

O: IMP CAESAR VESPASIANVS AVG TR P, laureate head right

R: COS III FORT RED, Fortuna Redux standing left, holding globe and caduceus.

Calico 613. RIC 1111. Nearly VF

Ex Heritage
RI0056
Sosius
rjb_2011_07_06.jpg
101cf35 viewsCarausius 287-93AD
Antoninianus
Obv “IMP CARAVSIVS PF AVG”
Radiate, draped and cuirassed bust right
Rev “PAX AVG”
Pax standing left holding vertical sceptre
Early London or, more likely, irregular mint
-/-//WL
RIC - (cf101)
The mintmark is not in the exergue but at the start of the reverse legend. The "M" is inverted so it appears as "W" if one reads the mark correctly.
1 commentsmauseus
rjb_car_cf121.jpg
121cf51 viewsCarausius 287-93 AD
AE antoninianus
Obv "IMP CARAVSIVS PF AVG"
Radiate, draped and cuirassed bust right
Rev "PAX AVG"
Pax standing left with transverse sceptre
Uncertain mint
V/star//-
RIC - (cf 121)
This coin clearly copies the coins of Victorinus from Mint I (Trier), third issue.
mauseus
Roman_Prov.jpg
26 Geta?21 viewsNever nailed this one down. It was discussed here:

http://www.forumancientcoins.com/board/index.php?topic=70693.msg443086#msg443086

From FORVM member Pscipio:
"Probably Geta as Caesar rather than Caracalla, cf. SNG Aulock 7165 for what looks like an obverse die match (different reverse type). Note that a similar left facing portrait also exists for Caracalla, but laureate, thus as Augustus: SNG Aulock 7162, which is clearly from the same hand and therefore probably belongs to the same emission.

The countermark appears to be Howgego 68."
Sosius
CaliDu01-2.jpg
37 AD Dedication of the temple of Divus Augustus288 viewsorichalcum dupondius (29mm). Rome mint. Struck AD 37.
CONSENSV SENAT·ET·EQ·ORDIN·P·Q·R Gaius seated left on curule chair
DIVVS AVGVSTVS S C radiate head of Augustus facing left
RIC (Gaius) 56; Cohen (August) 87; Foss (Roman historical coins) 60:4
ex old British (Oxford) collection

Minted under Caligula on the occasion of the dedication of a temple to Divus Agustus; the identity of the seated person is uncertain but probably Gaius. The legend 'ET EQ' refers to 'EQVES' (pl. EQVITES), 'horseman'. In the early empire, they were the holders of administrative posts of a class second only to the senators.
In the picture the obverse and reverse have accidentally been switched around.
Charles S
Baktria,_Diodotos_I,_AR_tetradrachm_-_Holt_A6_4_(this_coin)~0.jpg
Baktrian Kingdom, Diodotos I, ca. 255/250-240 BC, AR Tetradrachm 27 viewsDiademed head of Diodotos I right.
ΒΑΣΙΛΕΩΣ ANTIOXOY Zeus advancing left hurling thunderbolt, eagle at feet, ΙΔΤ (Iota, Delta, Sampi) monogram in inner left field.

Holt A6.4 (this coin); Kritt A6 (plate 2 A6 this coin); CSE 1294 (this coin); SNG Lockett 3109 (this coin ID: SNGuk_0300_3109); Pozzi 2945 (this coin); ESM 717α (this coin); SNG ANS 77; SC 631.a; Bopearachchi 2E; Mitchiner 64d; Qunduz 6; HGC 9, 243.
Mint "A" - Ai Khanoum

(26 mm, 15.73 g, 6h).
Herakles Numismatics; ex- Houghton Collection (CSE 1294); ex- Lockett Collection (SNGLockett 3109); ex- Pozzi Collection: Naville Sale I (1921) 2945 (sold for CHF 35).

This coin has a very distinguished provenance and has been published as plate coin in four reference works.

The emission with the ΙΔΤ (Iota, Delta Sampi) mint control mark is the most abundant of the Diodotid issues, representing about 13% of known Diodotid precious metal coins. The same control carries over into the early coinage of Euthydemos, although eventually displaced by the PK control monogram after 208/6 BC when Antiochos III captured Ai Khanoum while Euthydemos remained besieged at Baktra, after which it appears that Baktra/Balkh assumed the role of primary royal mint in Baktria. In is notable that the Archaic Greek letter Sampi forms the bottom of the ΙΔΤ monogram. It is an Archaic Greek form of a double Sigma that persisted in Greek dialects of Asia Minor. Many Greek settlers from Asia Minor migrated to Baktria, including the illustrious ruler Euthydemos from Magnesia in either Lydia, or Ionia. The archaic Greek Sampi possibly traveled to Baktria with the earliest Greek settlers from Asia Minor.
n.igma
conscamp~0.jpg
Constantine II, AE3, Thessalonica, RIC VII, 157, 326-328 CE27 views

Constantine II, AE3, 326-328, Thessalonica, Officina 4
Obverse: CONSTANTINVS IVN NOB C, Laureate, draped, cuirassed bust left
Reverse: PROVIDEN_TIAE CAESS, Campgate with six rows, two turrets, no doors, star above, top and bottom rows empty blocks
SMTSD in exergue
19.5mm, 2.7g
RIC VII, 157 nearly full silvering
NORMAN K
HUN_Lajos_I_Huszar_547_Pohl_89-7.JPG
Huszár 547, Pohl 89-7, Unger 432h, Réthy II 89A41 viewsLouis I (Lajos I, in Hun.) (1342-1382). AR denar, .49 g., 13.94 mm. max., .28 gr., 90°

Obv: + [MO]nETA LODOVICI, Saracen head left, pellets flanking.

Rev: + REGIS hVnGARIE, Patriarchal cross with random pellets.

The type was struck 1373-1382 (per Huszár, Pohl & Unger, although Huszár later wrote that the Saracen-head coinage incepted in 1372). This privy mark was struck at Pécs by one of the Saracenus brothers, probably by Johannes, who took over the mint after the death of Jacobus (per Pohl).

Huszár/Pohl rarity rating 3.

The Saracen's head is a pun on the surname of Jacobus Saracenus (Szerechen, in Hun.) and his brother, Johannes, courtiers of Italian descent who were ennobled by Louis. The image of a Saracen's head appeared on their coat of arms. Jacobus became the kammergraf at the Pécs mint in 1352, and the Comes Camerarum Regalium in 1369. He died in the early 1370s, at which time Johannes succeeded him as kammergraf.
Stkp
islamic_ummayad_falsb.jpg
ISLAMIC--UMAYYAD7 views ISLAMIC--UMAYYAD
ca. late 7th - early 8th Century AD
AE Fulus (Fals) 14 mm 1.86 g
Umayyad Caliphate
laney
lu2l.jpg
Lucilla RIC 1756, 164-169 CE.44 viewsLucilla, wife of Lucius Verus
Obverse - LVCILLAE AVG ANTONINI AVG FB, draped bust right.
Reverse – PIETAS, Pietas standing left, right hand over lighted altar and holding box of incense in left. SC in field
30 mm diam. 19.8g. RIC 1756
Reverse clearly shows an inverse portrait caused by a clashed die
sold 1-2018
1 commentsNORMAN K
mar67.jpg
Maximinus I, RIC 67 / BMC 13 viewsMaximinus, AE sestertius, struck early in his reign.
Obverse: IMP MAXIMINVS PIVS AVG. Laureate and draped bust right, similar to that of Severus Alexander.
Reverse: VICTORIA AVG. Victory advancing right, holding wreath, S C at sides.
24.8 g, 31 mm diam.
NORMAN K
phraatesIV.jpg
Phraates IV (38 -2 BC) AR Tetradrachm 286 SE /26 BC51 viewsObv: Phraates diademed and cuirassed bust left with long pointed beard - no royal wart on forehead.
Rev: The king enthroned r. being presented with a palm branch by Tyche, standing l. before him holding cornucopiae with pellet above arm. Seleucid date 286 (C Pi Sigma) above palm. Greek inscription in 7 lines BASILEOS/BASILEON; on r. ARSAKOY/EUERGETOY' below [DIKAOY]; on l. EPIPHANOUS/PHILELLANOS; month off flan below
Wt 14.1 gm, 26.3 mm, Sellwood type 55

The coin could be that of Tiridates I who also ruled for a few months in 26 BC. The features of the king on this coin are much closer to that of Phraates than of much rarer Tiridates I according to a reclassification of Sellwood types by deCallatay and this is the most believable. The lower lines of the inscription would also settle the issue but are lost on this coin.
Early coins of the Parthian empire showed strong Greek empahasis on classical Greek forms and humanism which is gradually lost as the empire matured and finally decayed. The coins become schematic and emphasize suface ornament rather than sculptural quality. One senses from the portrait of Phraates that brutality was a prerequisite for Parthian kings who routinely bumped off fathers and brothers in their rise to power. Like the Spartans, they had a powerful empire in their time but its contribution to civilization was limited in the long term.
1 commentsdaverino
IMG_0351.JPG
Q. Sicinius11 viewsMoneyer issues of Imperatorial Rome. Q. Sicinius. Early 49 BC. AR Denarius (17.5mm, 3.89 g, 4h). Rome mint. Diademed head of Fortuna Populi Romani right / Palm frond with fillet and winged caduceus in saltire; wreath above. Crawford 440/1; CRI 1; Sydenham 938; Sicinia 5. Near VF, toned, some iridescence, banker’s marks and a couple scratches under tone on obverse, traces of deposits, a few minor marks on reverse.

Ex CNG
1 commentsecoli
BOTH_ANT_7.jpg
SOLD Antiochus V11 Sidetes Tetradrachm 138-129 BC SOLD7 viewsSOLD Obs - Diademed head of Antiochus V11 in fillet border
16.32g 29mm SC 2061.4e
Antioch on the Orontes mint
Rev- Athena holding Nike presenting wreath left , right, hand on shield proping up spear
Ins- ΒΑΣΙΛΕΩΣ ΑΝΤΙΟΧΟΥ ΕΥΕΡΙΓΕΡΟΥ surrounded by wreath
Control marks Monogram composing ΔΙ below A before Athena left Right above shield, A above M
An early Cappadocian copy emission 4 obs A14 (Krenkal & Lorber 2009) SOLD
cicerokid
107.jpg
Δ in circular punch219 viewsMACEDON (?). Thessalonica (?). Augustus. Æ 22. 27 B.C.- A.D. 14. Obv: KAIΣAP-(ΣEBAΣTOΣ) or similar. Laureate head right; countermark before chin. Rev: Inscription obliterated. City ethnic in wreath. Weight: 9.25 g. CM: Δ in circular punch, 5 mm. Howgego 706 (1 pc). Note: Howgego lists only one (!) coin of the period, where the countermark may be a Δ. That coin was struck for Octavian in Thessalonica, dated to 28/27 B.C. It is listed as "not verified" and the countermark described as A or Δ. In regard to [107], the countermark is very clearly Δ! Collection Automan.Automan
00029x00~0.jpg
94 viewsAugustus. 27 BC-AD 14
Æ Dupondius (25mm, 5.96 g, 1 h)
Balkans region. Imitating a Rome mint issue of an uncertain moneyer. Struck early 1st century AD.
Corrupt legend in two lines within wreath; two imitative countermarks
Large (retrograde S)C
Ardatirion
00017x00~3.jpg
10 viewsROME
PB Tessera (15mm, 2.60 g, 2h)
Silvanus standing left, holding scythe and branch
Bear(?) advancing right
Rostowzew – (but cf. 2982 for an example with a bear)

Ex RBW Collection (Classical Numismatic Group Electronic Auction 376, 15 June 2016), lot 770 (part of); Artemide 5E (19 December 2010), lot 1163 (part of)

The reverse figure is crudely engraved, but clearly not a stag.
Ardatirion
00084x00.jpg
51 viewsUNITED STATES, Political campaign tokens. William Henry Harrison. President, March 4-April 4 1841.
Æ Political Medallet (23mm, 4.22 g, 12 h)
Belleville (New Jersey) mint. Dually dated 9 February 1773 and 1841
MAJ. GEN. W. H. HARRISON/ * BORN FEB. 9. 1773*
Bust of William Henry Harrison left in military uniform
STEAM BOAT VAN BUREN/ FOR SALT RIVER DIRECT.
Early steamboat sailing right with banner inscribed 1841; LOCO-FOCO/ LINE below. '
With attached contemporary ribbon.
Rulau HT 817; Low -
Ardatirion
DSC_0195.jpg
74 viewsINDONESIA, Kingdom of Srivijaya.
7th-13th centuries AD
Æ (17mm, 0.32 g).
Cirebon or Tegal area. Struck in the early 11th century
Xian Ping Yuan Bao in crude Hànzì
Blank
Zeno 124661


The kingdom of Srivijaya (San Fo Chi, in Chinese) apparently petitioned the Emperor Zhēnzōng of China, seeking protection from the Chola Kingdom and permission to strike coins. This type, known only from recent finds near Palembang, likely represents the earliest native coinage of that area.
1 commentsArdatirion
00004x00~2.jpg
69 viewsUNITED STATES TOKENS, Hard Times. New York, New York. Henry Law, baker.
CU Token (29mm, 8.60 g, 12 h)
Belleville (New Jersey) mint. Struck 1834-1835
ENGLISH BREAD/ TWIST & FANCY CAKES
Bushel of wheat
H. LAW BAKER/ 187 CANAL St NEW YORK
Eagle standing right, with wings spread and head left, shield on breast and olive branch in talons
Rulau HT 286; Low 261

Henry Law was married to Charlotte (née Stephens), the sister of William Stephens, a partner in one of the two firms that comprised the Belleville mint. Henry's bakery moved to Canal St. in 1834 and was closed in late 1834 or early 1835, when its proprietor died. Charlotte and her children later moved to Belleville.
Ardatirion
Aphroditopolis.jpg
34 viewsEGYPT, Aphroditopolis
PB Tessera (13mm, 1.78 g)
Eros standing left, stooping over bird to left
Head of hippocamp right (or swan right?)
Milne 5325-9; Dattari (Savio) 11856-7; Köln -; Rostowzew & Prou 714 (dolphin)

The reverse type here more closely resembles a swan than it does a hippocamp. While the swan is a symbol of Aphrodite, Dattari (Savio) 11857 clearly shows the head a hippocamp. It is possible that these are two distinct types.
Ardatirion
00091x00.jpg
93 viewsCANADA, Tokens. Nova Scotia. William IV. King of Great Britain, 1830-1837.
CU Penny Token (34.5 mm, 14.27 g, 6 h)
Belleville (New Jersey) mint. Dated 1832, but struck circa 1835.
PROVINCE OF NOVA SCOTIA
Laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right
ONE PENNY TOKEN, thistle with two leaves; 1832 below
Charlton NS-4A2; Breton 870

Canadian catalogs traditionally give this issue to an illicit mint in Montreal. Wayne Jacobs1 argues that these were struck in Belleville. While his methodology is somewhat questionable - most of his theory is based off a unreliable editorial in an 1893 edition of the Newark Sunday Call - his reasoning regarding this series is sound. He is able to clearly demonstrate that the halfpenny and penny tokens in question are a product of a single, cohesive establishment which could not have been located in Lower Canada. Finally, Jacobs' claim can be supported by documentary evidence from the Belleville mint's primary competitor, the Scoville Company of Waterbury, Connecticut. A letter from J.M.L. to W.H. Scoville, dated April 4 1839, states that, "a competitor was stamping Canada Nova Scotia and Southern coins at 35 cents a pound."

1. Jacobs, Wayne. 1996. “The Shadowy Issues of the Belleville Mint.” Canadian Numismatic Journal 41 1: 13–26.
1 commentsArdatirion
00055x00~0.jpg
47 viewsHAITI, Premier République. Jean Pierre Boyer. President, 1825-1843
Brass 50 Centimes (25.5mm, 4.26 g, 12h)
Contemporary counterfeit. Dated L'An 25 of the Republic (AD 1828/9)
J * BOYER * PRESIDENTE *, AN 25
Bust left
REPUBLIQUE D'HAITI */ 50 * C
Palm tree flanked by cannon and banners
KM 20a; cf. Arroyo 105 (for official issue); Lissade 96; iNumis 25, lot 1352

On 1 June 1835, local officials arrested engraver Joseph Gardner of Belleville on charges of counterfeiting. When searching his house, officials discovered dies for Spanish 8 reales in various states of completion, coining implements, a bag of gold dust, and several bags of "spurious Haytien coppers." Yet Gardner was not the only individual striking illicit Haitian coins. James Bishop of neighboring Bloomfield, New Jersey had been arrested several months before, and a third person was responsible for the issue brought to Haiti by Jeremiah Hamilton.

Today, two distinct issues of counterfeits can be identified: a group of 25 and 50 Centimes, clearly related in fabric, and two different dates of 100 Centimes. The smaller denominations are most often found lacking a silver plating, while the plating year 26 100 Centimes is fine enough to deceive the likes of NGC and Heritage. Additionally, there are a handful year 27 100 centimes overstruck on US large cents. While I have not yet found a regular strike from these dies, they are the most likely candidate for Belleville's production.
Ardatirion
00028x00.jpg
40 viewsBYZANTINE. Baanes. Palatinos(?), circa 7th century AD
PB Seal (17mm, 5.58 g, 6 h)
Capricorn leaping right, ПAΛA below
Monogram (BAANH)
Unpublished

A palatinos was a minor clerk in the late Roman and early Byzantine period.
Ardatirion
DSC_4480.JPG
48 viewsUNITED STATES, Native proto-currency. Northern Pacific coast. 18th-early19th century
Shell “kop-kop” (29mm by 6mm, 0.38 g)
Tubular shell of the dentalium genus of mollusks
Robert Stearns, Ethno-conchology: A Study of Primitive Money p. 314-321

Ex Detroit Museum of Art

Kop-kops were smaller or damaged pieces of hi-qua shells and circulated as a fraction of the hi-qua. Use of this shell type as currency ranged from northern California to Alaska.
1 commentsArdatirion
973330.jpg
32 viewsBRITISH TOKENS, Tudor. temp. Mary–Edward VI.1553-1558.
PB Token (27mm, 5.29 g). St. Nicholas (‘Boy Bishop’) type. Cast in East Anglia (Bury St. Edmund’s?)
Mitre, croizer to right; all within border
Long cross pattée with trefoils in angles; scrollwork border
Rigold, Tokens class X.B, 1; Mitchiner & Skinner group Ra, 1

Ex Classical Numismatic Review XXXIX.1 (Spring 2014), no. 973330

Britain in the late middle ages played host to a popular regional variant of the ‘Feast of Fools’ festival. Every year on the feast of St. Nicholas, a boy was elected from among the local choristers to serve as ‘bishop.’ Dressed in mitre and bearing the croizer of his office, the young boy paraded through the city accompanied by his equally youthful ‘priest’ attendants. The ‘bishop’ performed all the ceremonies and offices of the real bishop, save for the actual conducting of mass. Though this practice was extinguished with the Dissolution of the Monasteries in 1539, it was briefly revived under Queen Mary, who took particular interest in the festival, when the lucky boy was referred to as ‘Queen Mary’s Child.’ The celebration of the boy bishop died out completely early in the reign of Elizabeth.

Evidence of this custom is particularly prevalent in East Anglia, specifically at Bury St. Edmunds. Beginning in the late 15th century, the region produced numerous lead tokens bearing the likeness of a bishop, often bearing legends relating to the festival of St. Nicholas. Issued in sizes roughly corresponding to groats, half groats, and pennies, these pieces were undoubtedly distributed by the boy bishop himself, and were likely redeemable at the local abbey or guild for treats and sweetmeats. Considering the endemic paucity of small change in Britain at the time, it is likely that, at least in parts of East Anglia, these tokens entered circulation along with the other private lead issues that were becoming common.
Ardatirion
charlemagne-denier-bourges~0.JPG
D.175 Charles the Great [Charlemagne] (denier, class 3, Bourges)16 viewsCharles the Great, king of the Franks (768-840) and Holy Roman emperor (800-814)
Denier (Bourges, class 3, 781-800)

Silver, 1.18 g, 20 mm diameter, die axis 3h

O/ [+CA]RLVS REX FR; cross pattée with a crescent in each quarter
R/ [+B]ITVRICA[S]; carolingian monogram KRLS

For the 3rd type of his coinage, Charles the Great introduced the famous KRLS monogram. This one contains all the letters of Karolvs : the consonants are clearly written at the edges and bound by a lozenge. The vowels are at the center of the monogram: A (using the upper part of the lozenge, O as the whole lozenge and V as the down part of the lozenge).
This monogram still appeared two centuries later in the coinage of Hugh Capet, first capetian king.
Droger
louis1-obole-melle-lin.JPG
D.613var Louis the Pious (obol, Melle, class 2)34 viewsLouis the Pious, king of the Franks and Holy Roman emperor (813-840)
Obol (Melle, class 2, 819-822)

Silver, 0.74 g, 17 mm diameter, die axis 9 h

O/ LVDO / VVIC
R/ +METALLVM; cross pattée

As the value of a denier was quite important (a sheep typically cost 10 deniers during Charles the Great's reign), a smaller coin was needed. Clearly speaking, an obol is a half-denier. The carolingian coinage is typically one of silver deniers and obols. Obols and deniers were usually produced by pairs of the same kind.

Contrary to the related denier, the name of the ruler is here in the field and the mint name surrounds a cross pattée.
The absence of the imperial title made think that the coin had been struck when Louis was king of Aquitaine (before the death of Charles the Great). However there are similar obols with out of Aquitain mints. The absence of the imperial title (as well as an abbreviated name Lvdovvic instead of Hlvdovvicvs) may be due to a lack of space.
Droger
charles2-denier_orleans-porte.JPG
D.725 Charles II the Bald (denier, class 1c, Orléans)16 viewsCharles the Bald, king of the Franks (840-877)
Denier with a gate (Orléans, class 1c, 840-864)

Silver, 1.26 g, 19 mm diameter, die axis 5h

O/ +CΛRLVS REX FR; cross pattée with four pellets
R/ +ΛVRE-LI-ΛINS; city gate with two pellets on sides

The gate motif goes back to Roman times and was used by early Carolingians (and Capetians later).
There is a small misprint on the reverse : +ΛVRE-LI-ΛINS instead +ΛVRE-LI-ΛNIS
Droger
charles2-denier-bourges-emp.JPG
D.198 Charles II the Bald (denier, class 3, Bourges)27 viewsCharles the Bald, king of the Franks (840-877) and Holy Roman Emperor (875-877)
Denier (Bourges, class 2, 876-877)

Silver, 1.47 g, 19 mm diameter, die axis 12h

O/ +CΛRLVS IMP ΛVG; cross pattée
R/ +BITVRICES CIVIT; carolingian monogram

In 875, after the death of his nephew, the Emperor Louis II, Charles received the imperial crown.
The related coinage clearly shows the imperial title in a roman way, IMP AVG. This coinage may be undistinguishable from the one of Charles the Fat (885-887), when he assumed West Francia kingship (before being chased by Eudes, count of Paris and next king of the Franks).
Droger
hugues-capet-denier-beauvais.JPG
Dy.001 Hugh Capet: denier (Beauvais)19 viewsHugh Capet, king of the Franks (987-996) and Hervé, Bishop of Beauvais (987-998)
Denier (Beauvais)

Silver, 1.19 g, diameter 21 mm, die axis 9h
O: [HERV]EVS HVGO RE[X] ; cross pattée with 2 pellets
R: BE[LVΛC]VS CIVITΛS ; carolingian monogram KRLS

Although Hugh Capet was the founder of the capetian dynasty, his coinage contains a carolingian monogram. It may have been a way to show the continuity of the royal authority. The presence of the bishop Hervé is not really understood on this nearly only coinage of Hugh Capet as king of the Franks (obols of the same type are also known, as well as a unique denier of Laon).
Droger
philippe2-denier-tournois.JPG
Dy.177 Philip II (Augustus): denier tournois (Tours)23 viewsPhilip II, king of France (1180-1223)
Denier tournois (Tours)

Billon, 0.92 g, diameter 19 mm, die axis 10h30
O: PHILIPVS REX; croix pattée
R: +TVRONVS CIVI; châtel tournois

This is the first denier tournois, nearly with the standard and final legend TVRONVS CIVI(S).
Droger
raoul-denier-paris.JPG
D.774 Rudolph (denier, Paris)9 viewsRudolph (or Raoul, Radulf), king of the Franks (923-936)
Denier (Paris)

Silver, 1.13 g, 18 mm diameter, die axis 11h

O/ +CRATIA DI REX; monogram
R/ + / PΛRISI / CIVITΛ / +

Rudolph was elected king of Franks by noblemen in 923, after his father-in-law (Robert I)'s death.

Although Rudolph wasn't a carolingian, his coinage used a monogram.This monogram is clearly inspired by the habitual KRLS monogram. The letters seem to be R(?)DFS. Anyway, the F on the bottom can be cleary distinguished, and this coin can be attributed to Rudolph.

Droger
raoul-denier-orleans.JPG
D.733 Rudolph (denier, Orléans)8 viewsRudolph (or Raoul, Radulf), king of the Franks (923-936)
Denier (Orléans)

Silver, 1.27 g, 18 mm diameter, die axis 6h

O/ +CRΛTIΛ D-I REX; monogram RDFS (legend beginning at 9h)
R/ +ΛVRELIΛNIS CIVITΛ cross pattée

This monogram is clearly an imitation of the tradition KRLS Charles' one. As often in Orléans' coinage, the I after an L in Avrelianis is in the angle of the L.
Droger
w14240.jpg
"8 Zhu" Ban Liang of Qin Kingdom (Eastern Zhou Dynasty)24 viewsMinted 300-220 BCE.

Two huge Chinese characters - Ban Liang ("Half an ounce"), no rims or other marks / Blank, no rims. Unfiled edges.

This very large thin coins of variable weight were made under the very late Zhou dynasty - they are local issues, and might belong either to the late "Warring States" period or the early Qin period.

31mm, 3.52 grams. Hartill #7.4.
Belisarius
lg004_quad_sm.jpg
"As de Nîmes" or "crocodile" Ӕ dupondius of Nemausus (9 - 3 BC), honoring Augustus and Agrippa33 viewsIMP DIVI F , Heads of Agrippa (left) and Augustus (right) back to back, Agrippa wearing rostral crown and Augustus the oak-wreath / COL NEM, crocodile right chained to palm-shoot with short dense fronds and tip right; two short palm offshoots left and right below, above on left a wreath with two long ties streaming right.

Ӕ, 24.5 x 3+ mm, 13.23g, die axis 3h; on both sides there are remains of what appears to be gold plating, perhaps it was a votive offering? Rough edges and slight scrapes on flan typical for this kind of coin, due to primitive technology (filing) of flan preparation.

IMPerator DIVI Filius. Mint of COLonia NEMausus (currently Nîmes, France). Known as "As de Nîmes", it is actually a dupontius (lit. "two-pounder") = 2 ases (sometimes cut in halves to get change). Dupondii were often made out of a golden-colored copper alloy (type of brass) "orichalcum" and this appears to be such case.

Key ID points: oak-wreath (microphotography shows that at least one leaf has a complicated shape, although distinguishing oak from laurel is very difficult) – earlier versions have Augustus bareheaded, no PP on obverse as in later versions, no NE ligature, palm with short fronds with tip right (later versions have tip left and sometimes long fronds). Not typical: no clear laurel wreath together with the rostral crown, gold (?) plating (!), both features really baffling.

But still clearly a "middle" kind of the croc dupondius, known as "type III": RIC I 158, RPC I 524, Sear 1730. It is often conservatively dated to 10 BC - 10 AD, but these days it is usually narrowed to 9/8 - 3 BC.

It is a commemorative issue, honoring the victory over Mark Antony and conquest of Egypt in 30 BC. The heads of Augustus and Agrippa were probably positioned to remind familiar obverses of Roman republican coins with two-faced Janus. Palm branch was a common symbol of victory, in this case grown into a tree, like the victories of Augustus and Agrippa grown into the empire. The two offshoots at the bottom may mean two sons of Agrippa, Gaius and Lucius, who were supposed to be Augustus' heirs and were patrons of the colony. Palm may also be a symbol of the local Nemausian deity, which was probably worshiped in a sacred grove. When these coins were minted, the colony was mostly populated by the settled veterans of Augustus' campaigns, hence the reminiscence of the most famous victory, but some of the original Celtic culture probably survived and was assimilated by Romans. The crocodile is not only the symbol of Egypt, like in the famous Octavian's coins AEGYPTO CAPTA. It is also a representation of Mark Antony, powerful and scary both in water and on land, but a bit slow and stupid. The shape of the crocodile with tail up was specifically chosen to remind of the shape of ship on very common "legionary" denarius series, which Mark Antony minted to pay his armies just before Actium. It is probably also related to the popular contemporary caricature of Cleopatra, riding on and simultaneously copulating with a crocodile, holding a palm branch in her hand as if in triumph. There the crocodile also symbolized Mark Antony.

Marcus Vipsanius Agrippa was born c. 64-62 BC somewhere in rural Italy. His family was of humble and plebeian origins, but rich, of equestrian rank. Agrippa was about the same age as Octavian, and the two were educated together and became close friends. He probably first served in Caesar's Spanish campaign of 46–45 BC. Caesar regarded him highly enough to send him with Octavius in 45 BC to train in Illyria. When Octavian returned to Rome after Caesar's assassination, Agrippa became his close lieutenant, performing many tasks. He probably started his political career in 43 BC as a tribune of the people and then a member of the Senate. Then he was one of the leading Octavian's generals, finally becoming THE leading general and admiral in the civil wars of the subsequent years.

In 38 as a governor of Transalpine Gaul Agrippa undertook an expedition to Germania, thus becoming the first Roman general since Julius Caesar to cross the Rhine. During this foray he helped the Germanic tribe of Ubii (who previously allied themselves with Caesar in 55 BC) to resettle on the west bank of the Rhine. A shrine was dedicated there, possibly to Divus Caesar whom Ubii fondly remembered, and the village became known as Ara Ubiorum, "Altar of Ubians". This quickly would become an important Roman settlement. Agrippina the Younger, Agrippa's granddaughter, wife of Emperor Claudius and mother of Emperor Nero, would be born there in 15 AD. In 50 AD she would sponsor this village to be upgraded to a colonia, and it would be renamed Colonia Claudia Ara Agrippinensium (colony of Claudius [at] the Altar of Agrippinians – Ubii renamed themselves as Agrippinians to honor the augusta!), abbreviated as CCAA, later to become the capital of new Roman province, Germania Inferior.

In 37 BC Octavian recalled Agrippa back to Rome and arranged for him to win the consular elections, he desperately needed help in naval warfare with Sextus Pompey, the youngest son of Pompey the Great, who styled himself as the last supporter of the republican cause, but in reality became a pirate king, an irony since his father was the one who virtually exterminated piracy in all the Roman waters. He forced humiliating armistice on the triumvirs in 39 BC and when Octavian renewed the hostilities a year later, defeated him in a decisive naval battle of Messina. New fleet had to be built and trained, and Agrippa was the man for the job. Agrippa's solution was creating a huge secret naval base he called Portus Iulius by connecting together lakes Avernus, Avernus and the natural inner and outer harbors behind Cape Misenum at the northern end of the Gulf of Naples. He also created a larger type of ship and developed a new naval weapon: harpax – a ballista-launched grapnel shot with mechanisms that allowed pulling enemy ships close for easy boarding. It replaced the previous boarding device that Romans used since the First Punic War, corvus – effective, but extremely cumbersome. A later defence against it were scythe blades on long poles for cutting ropes, but since this invention was developed in secret, the enemy had no chance to prepare anything like it. It all has proved extremely effective: in a series of naval engagements Agrippa annihilated the fleet of Sextus, forced him to abandon his bases and run away. For this Agrippa was awarded an unprecedented honour that no Roman before or after him received: a rostral crown, "corona rostrata", a wreath decorated in front by a prow and beak of a ship.

That's why Virgil (Aeneid VIII, 683-684), describing Agrippa at Actium, says: "…belli insigne superbum, tempora navali fulgent rostrata corona." "…the proud military decoration, gleams on his brow the naval rostral crown". Actium, the decisive battle between forces of Octavian and Mark Antony, may appear boring compared to the war with Sextus, but it probably turned out this way due to Agrippa's victories in preliminary naval engagements and taking over all the strategy from Octavian.

In between the wars Agrippa has shown an unusual talent in city planning, not only constructing many new public buildings etc., but also greatly improving Rome's sanitation by doing a complete overhaul of all the aqueducts and sewers. Typically, it was Augustus who later would boast that "he had found the city of brick but left it of marble", forgetting that, just like in his naval successes, it was Agrippa who did most of the work. Agrippa had building programs in other Roman cities as well, a magnificent temple (currently known as Maison Carrée) survives in Nîmes itself, which was probably built by Agrippa.

Later relationship between Augustus and Agrippa seemed colder for a while, Agrippa seemed to even go into "exile", but modern historians agree that it was just a ploy: Augustus wanted others to think that Agrippa was his "rival" while in truth he was keeping a significant army far away from Rome, ready to come to the rescue in case Augustus' political machinations fail. It is confirmed by the fact that later Agrippa was recalled and given authority almost equal to Augustus himself, not to mention that he married Augustus' only biological child. The last years of Agrippa's life were spent governing the eastern provinces, were he won respect even of the Jews. He also restored Crimea to Roman Empire. His last service was starting the conquest of the upper Danube, were later the province of Pannonia would be. He suddenly died of illness in 12 BC, aged ~51.

Agrippa had several children through his three marriages. Through some of his children, Agrippa would become ancestor to many subsequent members of the Julio-Claudian dynasty. He has numerous other legacies.
Yurii P
opium weights.jpg
'Opium weights'87 viewsSet of five hintha bird weights (a Brahmani Duck (Hamsa) emblem of the Mon kingdom with duck’s bill, crested comb, bulging eyes, side wings and upturned tail standing with 2 legs and rear post on a tapered hexagonal base with serrated edge). These are sometimes referred to as cock weights or opium weights. The bases are hexagonal - probably from Burma or surrounding The lighest one is 15g and they double up from there

Likely late 18th or early 19th century

-:Bacchus:-
Bacchus
macrinus_deult_cerberc.jpg
(0217) MACRINUS43 views217 - 218 AD
AE 25 mm 10.84 g
O: IMP CM OPEL SEV MACRINVS PI Radiate bust right
R: COL FL PAC DEVLT Hades-Serapis seated left, Cerberus at feet on left
Thrace, Deultum
SNG (Bulg.) Ruse 1, Deultum, no. 120, pl. 9 (=Jurukova 46)
(Draganov cites just one die pair, apparently the same as this coin; provincials at Deultum start with Caracalla, so Macrinus is an early issue)
laney
TACITUS.jpg
(0275) TACITUS31 views275 - 276 AD
AE SILVERED ANT. 23 mm 4.00 g
O: IMP C M C L TACITVS AVG
RAD DR CUIR BUST R
R: CLEMENTIA TEMP
TACITUS L HOLDING SCIPIO RECRIVING GLOBE FROM JUPITER WHO HOLDS LONG SCEPTER, * IN CENTER FIELD
KA IN EXE
TRIPOLIS RIC 213
(nearly full silvering)
laney
probus_rest_orb_z_resb.jpg
(0276) PROBUS17 views276 - 282 AD
Silvered AE
Ant. 21 mm, 3.92 g
O: IMP C M AVR PROBVS PF AVG radiate draped cuirassed bust right
R: RESTITVT ORBIS woman standing right presenting wreath to emperor holding globe and scepter; Z in lower center field; XXI in exe.
Antioch mint; RIC V Part 2 925
(nearly fully silvered)
laney
probus_rest_orb_a_resb.jpg
(0276) PROBUS19 views276 - 282 AD
Silvered AE Ant. 21 mm 4.07 g
O: IMP C AVR PROBVS PF AVG radiate draped bust right
R: RESTITVT ORBIS woman standing right p0resenting wreath to emperor standing left, holding globe and scepter; A in lower center; XII in exe
Antioch mint; RIC 925
(nearly fully silvered)
laney
probus_clementia_xxi_res.jpg
(0276) PROBUS21 views276 - 282 AD
Silvered Ant. 22X24 mm, 3.84 g Nearly fully silvered
Obv: IMP C M AVR PROBVS P F AVG
Radiate, draped and cuirassed bust right, holding eagle-tipped scepter
Rev: CLEMENTIA TEMP (pellet)
Emperor standing right, holding scepter, receiving globe from Jupiter, standing left, holding scepter
Minted in Tripolis (wreath in top center field, XXI in exe.)
Emission 2 Officina 1. circa A.D. 280
Reference:– RIC 927 Bust type C
laney
probus_clementia_resized.jpg
(0276) Probus/Clementia Temp Silvered Ant.40 views276 - 282 AD
Silvered Ant. 22X24 mm, 3.84 g Nearly fully silvered
Obv: IMP C M AVR PROBVS P F AVG
Radiate, draped and cuirassed bust right, holding eagle-tipped scepter
Rev: CLEMENTIA TEMP (pellet)
Emperor standing right, holding scepter, receiving globe from Jupiter, standing left, holding scepter
Minted in Tripolis (wreath in top center field, XXI in exe.)
Emission 2 Officina 1. circa A.D. 280
Reference:– RIC 927 Bust type C

laney
Diocletian_Iovi_Et_Hercu_Cons_silv_ant.jpg
(0284) Diocletian / Iovi Hercu Conser51 viewsSilvered Ant. 22mm 3.45 g
284 - 305 AD
Obv: IMP CC VAL DIOCLETIANVS PF AVG
Rad Dr Cuir Bust R
Rev: IOV ET HERCV CONSER AVGG
Jupiter stg R hldg globe and scepter; Hercules stg L hldg Victory, club,& lionskin; crescent over H below
XXI in exe; Antioch RIC V 323
Nearly fully silvered
(J.Ryan)
laney
Janus119BCCrawford281_1.jpg
(500a) Roman Republic, 119 BC, M. Furius Philius - Furia 1882 viewsRoman Republic, 119 BC, M. Furius Philius - Furia 18. Crawford 281/1, Sydenham 529; 19mm, 3.23 grams. aVF, Rome; Obverse: laureate head of Janus, M FORVRI L F around; Reverse: Roma standing left erecting trophy, Galic arms around, PHLI in exergue. Ex Ephesus Numismatics.

Gauis Marius
As a novus homo, or new man, Marius found the rise in the Roman cursus honorum ( "course of honours"-- the sequential order of public offices held by aspiring politicians in the Roman Republic) a daunting challenge. It is certain that he used his old family client contacts and his military relations as a source of support. Among these contacts were the powerful Metelli family, and their early support was to prove to be a disaster for them. Just a few short years after his service as Quaestor, Marius was elected Tribune of the Plebes in 119 BC. In this position so soon after the political turmoil and murder of the Gracchi brothers (Gaius murdered 123 BC), Marius chose to follow the populares path, making a name for himself under similar auspices. As Tribune, he would ensure the animosity of the conservative faction of the Senate, and the Metelli, by passing popular laws forbidding the inspection of ballot boxes. In do doing, he directly opposed the powerful elite, who used ballot inspection as a way to intimidate voters in the citizen assembly elections.

Marius would go on to be elected Consul seven times and figure prominantly in the civil unrest of the early eighties as Lucius Cornelius Sulla's opponent. In 88 BC, Sulla had been elected Consul. There was now a choice before the Senate about which general to send to Asia (a potentially lucrative command): either Marius or Sulla. The Senate chose Sulla, but soon the Assembly appointed Marius. In this unsavory episode of low politics, Marius had been helped by the unscrupulous actions of Publius Sulpicius Rufus, whose debts Marius had promised to erase. Sulla refused to acknowledge the validity of the Assembly's action.

Sulla left Rome and traveled to "his"army waiting in Nola, the army the Senate had asked him to lead to Asia. Sulla urged his legions to defy the Assembly's orders and accept him as their rightful leader. Sulla was successful, and the legions murdered the representatives from the Assembly. Sulla then commanded six legions to march with him opon Rome and institute a civil war.

This was a momentous event, and was unforeseen by Marius, as no Roman army had ever marched upon Rome—it was forbidden by law and ancient tradition.

Sulla was to eventually rule Rome as Dictator. In his book Rubicon, historian Tom Holland argues that Sulla's actions had no lasting negative effect upon the health of the Republic, that Sulla was at heart a Republican. However, once a Roman general has defied Republican tradition, once a Roman general has used his command to combat fellow Romans, once a Roman general has set-up himself as Dictator--it follows that the decision to replicate these decsions (think: Caesar and Rubicon) is that much more easiely taken.

J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.





Cleisthenes
P.Licinius Nerva voting.jpg
(500a113) Roman Republic, P. Licinius Nerva, 113-112 B.C.86 viewsROMAN REPUBLIC: P. Licinius Nerva. AR denarius (3.93 gm). Rome, ca. 113-112 BC. Helmeted bust of Roma left, holding spear over right shoulder and shield on left arm, crescent above, * before, ROMA behind / P. NERVA, voting scene showing two citizens casting their ballots in the Comitium, one receiving a ballot from an attendant, the other dropping his ballot into a vessel at right. Crawford 292/1. RSC Licinia 7. RCTV 169. Nearly very fine. Ex Freeman and Sear.

Here is a denarius whose reverse device is one that celebrates the privilege and responsibility that is the foundation of a democratic society; it is a forerunner to the L. Cassius Longinus denarius of 63 B.C. Granted, humanity had a long road ahead toward egalitarianism when this coin was struck, but isn't it an interesting testimony to civil liberty's heritage? "The voter on the left (reverse) receives his voting tablet from an election officer. Horizontal lines in the background indicate the barrier separating every voting division from the others. Both voters go across narrow raised walks (pontes); this is intended to ensure that the voter is seen to cast his vote without influence" (Meier, Christian. Caesar: A Biography. Berlin: Severin and Siedler, 1982. Plate 12). This significant coin precedes the Longinus denarius by 50 years.

J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.
2 commentsCleisthenes
LPisoFrugiDenarius_S235.jpg
(502a) Roman Republic, L. Calpurnius Piso Frugi, 90 B.C.157 viewsSilver denarius, S 235, Calpurnia 11, Crawford 340/1, Syd 663a, VF, rainbow toning, Rome mint, 3.772g, 18.5mm, 180o, 90 B.C. obverse: laureate head of Apollo right, scorpion behind; Reverse naked horseman galloping right holding palm, L PISO FRVGI and control number CXI below; ex-CNA XV 6/5/91, #443. Ex FORVM.


A portion of the following text is a passage taken from the excellent article “The Calpurnii and Roman Family History: An Analysis of the Piso Frugi Coin in the Joel Handshu Collection at the College of Charleston,” by Chance W. Cook:

In the Roman world, particularly prior to the inception of the principate, moneyers were allotted a high degree of latitude to mint their coins as they saw fit. The tres viri monetales, the three men in charge of minting coins, who served one-year terms, often emblazoned their coins with an incredible variety of images and inscriptions reflecting the grandeur, history, and religion of Rome. Yet also prominent are references to personal or familial accomplishments; in this manner coins were also a means by which the tres viri monetales could honor their forbearers. Most obvious from an analysis of the Piso Frugi denarius is the respect and admiration that Lucius Calpurnius Piso Frugi, who minted the coin, had for his ancestors. For the images he selected for his dies relate directly to the lofty deeds performed by his Calpurnii forbearers in the century prior to his term as moneyer. The Calpurnii were present at many of the watershed events in the late Republic and had long distinguished themselves in serving the state, becoming an influential and well-respected family whose defense of traditional Roman values cannot be doubted.

Lucius Calpurnius Piso Frugi, who was moneyer in 90 B.C., depicted Apollo on the obverse and the galloping horseman on the reverse, as does his son Gaius. However, all of L. Piso Frugi’s coins have lettering similar to “L-PISO-FRVGI” on the reverse, quite disparate from his son Gaius’ derivations of “C-PISO-L-F-FRV.”

Moreover, C. Piso Frugi coins are noted as possessing “superior workmanship” to those produced by L. Piso Frugi.

The Frugi cognomen, which became hereditary, was first given to L. Calpurnius Piso, consul in 133 B.C., for his integrity and overall moral virtue. Cicero is noted as saying that frugal men possessed the three cardinal Stoic virtues of bravery, justice, and wisdom; indeed in the Thesaurus Linguae Latinae, a synonym of frugalitas is bonus, generically meaning “good” but also implying virtuous behavior. Gary Forsythe notes that Cicero would sometimes invoke L. Calpurnius Piso’s name at the beginning of speeches as “a paragon of moral rectitude” for his audience.

L. Calpurnius Piso Frugi’s inclusion of the laureled head of Apollo, essentially the same obverse die used by his son Gaius (c. 67 B.C.), was due to his family’s important role in the establishment of the Ludi Apollinares, the Games of Apollo, which were first instituted in 212 B.C. at the height of Hannibal’s invasion of Italy during the Second Punic War. By that time, Hannibal had crushed Roman armies at Cannae, seized Tarentum and was invading Campania.

Games had been used throughout Roman history as a means of allaying the fears
of the populace and distracting them from issues at hand; the Ludi Apollinares were no different. Forsythe follows the traditional interpretation that in 211 B.C., when C. Calpurnius Piso was praetor, he became the chief magistrate in Rome while both consuls were absent and the three other praetors were sent on military expeditions against Hannibal.

At this juncture, he put forth a motion in the Senate to make the Ludi Apollinares a yearly event, which was passed; the Ludi Apollinares did indeed become an important festival, eventually spanning eight days in the later Republic. However, this interpretation is debatable; H.H. Scullard suggests that the games were not made permanent until 208 B.C. after a severe plague prompted the Senate to make them a fixture on the calendar. The Senators believed Apollo would serve as a “healing god” for the people of Rome.

Nonetheless, the Calpurnii obviously believed their ancestor had played an integral role in the establishment of the Ludi Apollinares and thus prominently displayed
the head or bust of Apollo on the obverse of the coins they minted.

The meaning of the galloping horseman found on the reverse of the L. Calpurnius Piso Frugi coin is more complicated. It is possible that this is yet another reference to the Ludi Apollinares. Chariot races in the Circus Maximus were a major component of the games, along with animal hunts and theatrical performances.

A more intriguing possibility is that the horseman is a reference to C. Calpurnius Piso, son of the Calpurnius Piso who is said to have founded the Ludi Apollinares. This C. Calpurnius Piso was given a military command in 186 B.C. to quell a revolt in Spain. He was victorious, restoring order to the province and also gaining significant wealth in the process.

Upon his return to Rome in 184, he was granted a triumph by the Senate and eventually erected an arch on the Capitoline Hill celebrating his victory. Of course
the arch prominently displayed the Calpurnius name. Piso, however, was not an infantry commander; he led the cavalry.

The difficulty in accepting C. Calpurnius Piso’s victory in Spain as the impetus for the galloping horseman image is that not all of C. Piso Frugi’s coins depict the horseman or cavalryman carrying the palm, which is a symbol of victory. One is inclined to believe that the victory palm would be prominent in all of the coins minted by C. Piso Frugi (the son of L. Calpurnius Piso Frugi) if it indeed signified the great triumph of C. Calpurnius Piso in 186 B.C. Yet the palm’s appearance is clearly not a direct reference to military feats of C. Piso Frugi’s day. As noted, it is accepted that his coins were minted in 67 B.C.; in that year, the major victory by Roman forces was Pompey’s swift defeat of the pirates throughout the Mediterranean.

Chrestomathy: Annual Review of Undergraduate Research at the College of Charleston. Volume 1, 2002: pp. 1-10© 2002 by the College of Charleston, Charleston SC 29424, USA.All rights to be retained by the author.
http://www.cofc.edu/chrestomathy/vol1/cook.pdf


There are six (debatably seven) prominent Romans who have been known to posterity as Lucius Calpurnius Piso:

Lucius Calpurnius Piso Frugi: (d. 261 A.D.) a Roman usurper, whose existence is
questionable, based on the unreliable Historia Augusta.

Lucius Calpurnius Piso Licinianus: deputy Roman Emperor, 10 January 69 to15 January
69, appointed by Galba.

Lucius Calpurnius Piso: Consul in 27 A.D.

Lucius Calpurnius Piso: Consul in 1 B.C., augur

Lucius Calpurnius Piso: Consul in 15 B.C., pontifex

Lucius Calpurnius Piso Caesoninus: Consul in 58 B.C. (the uncle of Julius Caesar)

Lucius Calpurnius Piso Frugi: Moneyer in 90 B.C. (our man)


All but one (or two--if you believe in the existence of "Frugi the usurper" ca. 261 A.D.) of these gentlemen lack the Frugi cognomen, indicating they are not from the same direct lineage as our moneyer, though all are Calpurnii.

Calpurnius Piso Frugi's massive issue was intended to support the war against the Marsic Confederation. The type has numerous variations and control marks.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lucius_Calpurnius_Piso
http://www.forumancientcoins.com/catalog/indexfrm.asp?vpar=55&pos=0

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.


2 commentsCleisthenes
IMITATIVE OTTOMAN.jpg
*IMITATION OTTOMAN Cedid Mahmudiye968 viewsThis piece came in a bag of modern Foreign coins - 21 pounds! May be gold inside!!!
The dating did not seem right to me! From the experts at Zeno, I found a similar issue..... This attribution from Zeno:
Imitation of gold cedid mahmudiye (KM, Turkey #645) with distorted inscriptions and fantasy regnal year 78. Made for jewelry purposes throughout the 19th and early 20th century, very likely outside Turkey: similar imitations are met in abundance in South Russia and Ukraine, along the shores of Black and Azov seas, where they were widely used for adorning Gypsy and native Greek women's garments.

So, as you see, it is not exactly a FAKE or a COUNTERFEIT - it is an IMITATION, so the makers could not get into trouble. The regnal years alone would show that the coin was not "real" -

An interesting piece that may turn up from time to time!
dpaul7
V539.jpg
00 Domitian as Caesar RIC 53992 viewsAR Denarius, 3.17g
Rome mint, 73 AD (Vespasian)
Obv: CAES AVG F DOMITIAN COS II; Head of Domitian, laureate, bearded, r.
Rev: No legend; Domitian on horse l.; cloak flying out behind, r. hand raised, sceptre in l.
RIC 539 (R). BMC 122. RSC 665. BNC -.
Acquired from NumisCorner, June 2018.

This is the first denarius struck at Rome for Domitian as Caesar. Fittingly, it commemorates Domitian's appearance at Vespasian and Titus' joint Jewish War Triumph - 'while taking part in the Judaean triumph, he rode on a white horse' (Suetonius, Domitian, ii), which was the normal conduct for a young prince on such occasions. The type was struck in three variants: firstly, with a clockwise obverse legend and DOMITIAN fully spelled out, as we see here. Secondly, it was shortened to DOMIT, with the legend still running clockwise. Lastly, the legend direction was changed to counter clockwise with DOMIT. The first two variants are quite rare, the last relatively common. On this coin we see a cloak flying out from behind Domitian. This interesting detail only appears on a few coins from the first variant and does not show up on subsequent issues of the type. Most likely this variant with the cloak was the earliest version of the type which was then quickly simplified by dropping the cloak all together.

Well centred in good early style.
5 commentsDavid Atherton
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002. AUGUSTUS31 viewsAUGUSTUS AE as. Lugdunum mint, 10 BC or after. CAESAR PONT MAX, laureate head right. Reverse - the Altar of Lugdunum, Victory on each pedestal, ROM ET AVG below. RCV 1690.

This early type was issued circa 10 BC and the years immediately following, to commemorate the completion of the altar at Lugdunum, which was inaugurated on August 1st, 10 BC. A later type of this series was also issued later in the reign of Augustus, and includes both Augustus and Tiberius as Caesar.
ecoli
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002a, Aigina, Islands off Attica, Greece, c. 510 - 490 B.C.86 viewsSilver stater, S 1849, SNG Cop 503, F, 12.231g, 22.3mm, Aigina (Aegina) mint, c. 510 - 490 B.C.; Obverse: sea turtle (with row of dots down the middle); Reverse: incuse square of “Union Jack” pattern; banker's mark obverse. Ex FORVM.


Greek Turtles, by Gary T. Anderson

Turtles, the archaic currency of Aegina, are among the most sought after of all ancient coins. Their early history is somewhat of a mystery. At one time historians debated whether they or the issuances of Lydia were the world's earliest coins. The source of this idea comes indirectly from the writings of Heracleides of Pontus, a fourth century BC Greek scholar. In the treatise Etymologicum, Orion quotes Heracleides as claiming that King Pheidon of Argos, who died no later than 650 BC, was the first to strike coins at Aegina. However, archeological investigations date the earliest turtles to about 550 BC, and historians now believe that this is when the first of these intriguing coins were stamped.

Aegina is a small, mountainous island in the Saronikon Gulf, about midway between Attica and the Peloponnese. In the sixth century BC it was perhaps the foremost of the Greek maritime powers, with trade routes throughout the eastern half of the Mediterranean. It is through contacts with Greeks in Asia Minor that the idea of coinage was probably introduced to Aegina. Either the Lydians or Greeks along the coast of present day Turkey were most likely the first to produce coins, back in the late seventh century. These consisted of lumps of a metal called electrum (a mixture of gold and silver) stamped with an official impression to guarantee the coin was of a certain weight. Aegina picked up on this idea and improved upon it by stamping coins of (relatively) pure silver instead electrum, which contained varying proportions of gold and silver. The image stamped on the coin of the mighty sea power was that of a sea turtle, an animal that was plentiful in the Aegean Sea. While rival cities of Athens and Corinth would soon begin limited manufacture of coins, it is the turtle that became the dominant currency of southern Greece. The reason for this is the shear number of coins produced, estimated to be ten thousand yearly for nearly seventy years. The source for the metal came from the rich silver mines of Siphnos, an island in the Aegean. Although Aegina was a formidable trading nation, the coins seemed to have meant for local use, as few have been found outside the Cyclades and Crete. So powerful was their lure, however, that an old proverb states, "Courage and wisdom are overcome by Turtles."

The Aeginean turtle bore a close likeness to that of its live counterpart, with a series of dots running down the center of its shell. The reverse of the coin bore the imprint of the punch used to force the face of the coin into the obverse turtle die. Originally this consisted of an eight-pronged punch that produced a pattern of eight triangles. Later, other variations on this were tried. In 480 BC, the coin received its first major redesign. Two extra pellets were added to the shell near the head of the turtle, a design not seen in nature. Also, the reverse punch mark was given a lopsided design.

Although turtles were produced in great quantities from 550 - 480 BC, after this time production dramatically declines. This may be due to the exhaustion of the silver mines on Siphnos, or it may be related to another historical event. In 480 BC, Aegina's archrival Athens defeated Xerxes and his Persian armies at Marathon. After this, it was Athens that became the predominant power in the region. Aegina and Athens fought a series of wars until 457 BC, when Aegina was conquered by its foe and stripped of its maritime rights. At this time the coin of Aegina changed its image from that of the sea turtle to that of the land tortoise, symbolizing its change in fortunes.

The Turtle was an object of desire in ancient times and has become so once again. It was the first coin produced in Europe, and was produced in such great quantities that thousands of Turtles still exist today. Their historical importance and ready availability make them one of the most desirable items in any ancient coin enthusiast's collection.

(Greek Turtles, by Gary T. Anderson .
1 commentsCleisthenes
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002c. Gaius and Lucius Caesars65 viewsJulia, daughter of Augustus, who has had no child by Marcellus (she is only sixteen when he dies), is married to Agrippa, a soldier who has long been the emperor's most trusted supporter. They have two sons, Gaius and Lucius, born in 20 and 17 BC. The boys are adopted by the emperor. The intention now, if Augustus dies, is that Agrippa should rule until one of these grandsons is of an age to take control. But Agrippa dies in 12 BC.

Julia has had a total of five children by Agrippa (the two sons adopted by the emperor, two daughters, and another posthumous son, Agrippa Posthumus). She now has one son by Tiberius, but the child dies in infancy.

By 6 BC it is evident that Tiberius is being set aside. Julia refuses to live with him, and her eldest son Gaius (at the age of fourteen) is given a nominal high appointment as consul. Gaius and Lucius Caesar, grandsons and adopted sons of the emperor, are now clearly the family members in line for the succession. But they die young, Lucius Caesar in AD 2 and then Gaius in AD 4.

LYDIA, Magnesia ad Sipylum. Augustus. 27 BC-AD 14. Æ 19mm (4.93 g). Jugate heads of Augustus and Livia right / Confronted heads of Gaius and Lucius Caesars. RPC 2449. Fair. Rare. Ex-Cng
ecoli
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002d. Julia and Livia, Pergamon, Mysia43 viewsBronze AE 18, RPC I 2359, SNG Cop 467, aF, weight 3.903 g, maximum diameter 18.3 mm, die axis 0o, Pergamon mint, obverse ΛIBIAN HPAN CAPINOΣ, draped bust of Livia right; reverse IOYΛIAN AΦPO∆ITHN, draped bust of Julia right; ex Forum, ex Malter Galleries

Julia was Augustus' only natural child, the daughter of his second wife Scribonia. She was born the same day that Octavian divorced Scribonia, to marry Livia.

Julia's tragic destiny was to serve as a pawn in her father's dynastic plans. At age two, she was betrothed to Mark Antony's ten-year-old son, but the fathers' hostility ended the engagement. At age 14, she was married to her cousin but he died two years later. In 21 B.C., Julia married Agrippa, nearly 25 years her elder, Augustus' most trusted general and friend. Augustus had been advised, "You have made him so great that he must either become your son-in-law or be slain." Agrippa died suddenly in 12 B.C. and Julia was married in 11 B.C. to Tiberius.

During her marriages to Agrippa and Tiberius Julia took lovers. In 2 B.C., Julia was arrested for adultery and treason. Augustus declared her marriage null and void. He also asserted in public that she had been plotting against his own life. Reluctant to execute her, Augustus had her exiled, with no men in sight, forbidden even to drink wine. Scribonia, Julia's mother, accompanied her into exile. Five years later, she was allowed to move to Rhegium but Augustus never forgave her. When Tiberius became emperor, he cut off her allowance and put her in solitary confinement in one room in her house. Within months she died from malnutrition.
ecoli
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004 Hadrian Denarius 117 AD Trajan and Hadrian standing vis-à-vis eastern mint34 viewsReference.
Strack *3; Paris 4616

Obv. IMP CAES TRAIAN HADRIANO AVG DIVI TRA
Laureate, cuirassed bust right, baldric strap over shoulder and across chest, seen from front.

Rev. PARTHIC DIVI TRAIAN AVG F P M TR P COS P P ADOPTIO in exergue
Trajan holding with both hands, Hadrian's right hand; left hand on hip

2.73 gr
18 mm
6h

Note.
This early series celebrates the adoption of Hadrian by Trajan, therefore legitimizing Hadrian's succession to the people.
on Rome Mint Trajan or both would hold a volumen/rolls
2 commentsokidoki
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004. Caligula 41 viewsGAIUS (CALIGULA). 37-41 AD.

Whatever damage Tiberius's later years had done to the carefully crafted political edifice created by Augustus, Gaius multiplied it a hundredfold. When he came to power in A.D. 37 Gaius had no administrative experience beyond his honorary quaestorship, and had spent an unhappy early life far from the public eye. He appears, once in power, to have realized the boundless scope of his authority and acted accordingly. His reign highlighted an inherent weakness in the Augustan Principate, raw monarchy in which only the self-discipline of the incumbent acted as a restraint on his behavior.

Æ As (28mm, 10.19 gm). Rome mint. Struck 37-38 AD. Bare head left / Vesta seated left, holding patera and sceptre. RIC I 38; Cohen 27. Near VF, dark brown surfaces. Ex-CNG
ecoli
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005. Mn. Fonteius, Cf15 viewsDenarius, ca 85-84 BC, Auxiliary Italian mint.
Obverse: MN FONTEI CF / Bust of Vejovis with hair in loose locks; thunderbolt below; AP monogram under chin.
Reverse: Winged Cupid or Genius seated on goat; caps of the Dioscuri above; thyrsus with fillet below; all within a laurel wreath.
3.89 gm., 20 mm.
Syd. #724; RSC #Fonteia 9; Sear #271.

Vejovis was an ancient deity whose early function was forgotten. At his shrine in Rome, his statue portrayed him as a young beardless youth with a goat. By the time this coin was issued, he was identified with Pluto, the god of the underworld. He was probably a god of expiation since a goat was sacrificed to him once a year. We know from other sources that this goat sacrifice was expiatory in nature.
Callimachus
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005. Nero 54-68AD. AE Sestertius, Rome mint, 63AD. DECVRSIO. 38.6mm200 viewsObv. Laureate ead right, wearing aegis NERO CLAVDIVS CAESAR AVG GERM P M TR P IMP P P
Rev. Nero on horseback prancing right, wearing cuirass, short tunic, and billowing cloak, spear in right hand, to right soldier moving right. carrying vexillum; to leftin shallow relief, soldier running right DECVRSIO in ex
BMCRE 155; Cohen 94, RIC I 176 var (obv legend)
38.6mm, 180o, 63 A.D. Rome mint.
This sestertius was an early emission from the Rome Mint, which resumed striking bronze after about 10 years of inactivity. The talented engraver, perhaps with extra time for this initial project, produced one of the best dies in the entire imperial bronze series. The special style, complemented by superior execution, has similarities to later medallions.


The fine expressive portrait has higher relief than the more common Lugdunum issues.
The reverse uses the roundness of the flan and three geometric planes of relief to both present the scene in a format that draws the eye to the emperor and show movement that is lacking on almost all other Roman coins. The rare use of geometric planes was repeated on ADLOCVTIO sestertii of Galba five years later, perhaps the work of the same artist. Rome sestertii after 70 A.D. are of far less impressive style.


The lack of SC leaves the reverse fields uncluttered. SC stood for Senatus Consultum, "By Decree of the Senate" and signified the role of the Senate in the minting of brass and bronze coinage. Many sestertii of Caligula and some brass and bronze of Nero lack SC. Subsequent issues include SC again, until inflation produced the demise of the sestertius under Gallienus, c. 265 AD
5 commentsLordBest
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009. C. Mamilius Limetanus.64 viewsDenarius, 82-81 BC, Rome mint.
Obverse: Bust of Mercury wearing winged hat; caduceus and the letter I behind.
Reverse: C MAMIL LIMETAN / Ulysses, dressed like a Greek sailor, being recognized by his dog Argus upon returning to Ithaca.
4.06 gm., 19 mm.
Syd. #741; RSC #Mamilia 6; Sear #282.

The Mamilia gens claimed descent from Mamilia, the daughter of Telgonius, reputed son of Ulysses. Mercury is an ancestor of Ulysses.

The story as told in Homer's "Odyssey" is somewhat different from that portrayed on this coin. When Ulysses returned to Ithaca after twenty years, he found his dog Argus lying on a dung heap and nearly dead. Argus had only enough strength to wag his tail in recognition of his master's voice before he died. Be that as it may, this is still an elegant portrayal of this touching scene, the likes of which are rarely found on Roman coinage.

2 commentsCallimachus
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00a Domitian as Caesar RIC 541338 viewsAR Denarius, 3.46g
Rome mint, 73 AD (Vespasian)
Obv: CAES AVG F DOMIT COS II; Head of Domitian, laureate, bearded, r.
Rev: No legend; Domitian on horse l.; r. hand raised, sceptre in l.
RIC 541 (R2). BMC 129 var. RSC 664. BNC 105 var.
Ex Gemini X, 13 January 2013, Harry N. Sneh Collection, lot 701. = Helios, ebay, 29 November 2010 (A. Lynn Collection).

This is an extremely rare denarius of Domitian as Caesar, the second earliest minted at Rome. Here the legend is clockwise, the much more common Domitian on horseback type has the legend anticlockwise. The reverse may allude to Domitian's participation in Vespasian and Titus' joint triumph where he rode a 'magnificent' steed. The obverse is a die match with the RIC plate coin from Oxford.

The early portrait on this one is quite outstanding.
18 commentsDavid Atherton
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01 01 Julius Caesar 106 viewsJulius Caesar. 49-44 B.C. AR Denarius. Military mint traveling with Caesar in Gaul. c. 49-48 B.C. (3.72g, 19.0m, 4h). Obv: CAESAR in ex., elephant r. trampling serpent. Rev: simpulum, sprinkler, axe surmounted by wolf’s head, and apex. Cr 443/1; Syd. 1006.

This is the first issue in Caesar’s name. The obverse could symbolize the victory of good over evil in general, or the victory of Caesar’s forces over the Pompeians specifically. The reverse clearly refers to Caesar’s status as Pontifex Maximus.
3 commentsLucas H
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01 05 Julius Caesar27 viewsJulius Caesar. AR Denarius. Utica? Mint. 46 A.D. (3.7g, 16mm, 10h). Obv: DICT ITER COS TERT, head of Ceres right, wreathed with grain. Rev: AVGVR PONT MAX, emblems of the augurate and pontificate; aspergillum, guttus, and lituus; M (munus=gift) to right. Craw. 467/1b, Syd. 1024.

This was likely used as a donative by Caesar during his triumph of 46 B.C. While porous, this example is well centered, and the M is clearly on the flan.
Lucas H
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01 Domitian as Caesar RIC 66927 viewsÆ As, 11.05g
Rome mint, 73-74 AD (Vespasian)
Obv: CAESAR AVG F DOMITIAN COS II; Head of Domitian, laureate, bearded, r.
Rev: PAX AVGVST; S C in field; Pax stg. l., leaning on column, with caduceus and branch
RIC 669 (C). BMC -. BNC 699.
Acquired from Musa Numismatics, August 2019.

The propaganda value of Pax for the Flavian dynasty after the Civil War, the revolt of Civilis, and the Jewish War cannot be underestimated. In her various guises she is one of the most popular types on Vespasian's coinage and shows up quite frequently during the reign on the coins struck for both himself and his sons. This As struck for Domitian as Caesar shows Pax leaning on a column, which likely copies a well known cult image of the goddess.

Tellingly, less than a decade later, Pax would not feature so prominently on Domitian's own coinage as Emperor.

Fine style early portrait.
1 commentsDavid Atherton
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010 Augustus161 viewsDivus Augustus Æ As. Commemorative by Tiberius. DIVVS AVGVSTVS PATER, radiate head left, thunderbolt before / Eagle standing on globe facing, wings spread, head right, S C at sides. RIC 82 [Tiberius]


"I found Rome built of bricks; I leave her clothed in marble."


This was one of my first ancients, it was my first early imperial.
1 commentsrandy h2
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010. Vespasian 69 AD - 79 AD36 viewsVespasian

The character of this emperor showed very little, if anything, of the pagan tyrant. Though himself a man of no literary culture, he became the protector of his prisoner of war, the Jewish historian Josephus, a worshipper of the One God, and even permitted him the use of his own family name (Flavius). While this generosity may have been in some degree prompted by Josephus's shrewd prophecy of Vespasian's elevation to the purple, there are other instances of his disposition to reward merit in those with whom he was by no means personally sympathetic. Vespasian has the distinction of being the first Roman Emperor to transmit the purple to his own son; he is also noteworthy in Roman imperial history as having very nearly completed his seventieth year and died a natural death: being in feeble health, he had withdrawn to benefit by the purer air of his native Reate, in the "dewy fields" (rosei campi) of the Sabine country. By his wife, Flavia Domitilla, he left two sons, Titus and Domitian, and a daughter, Domitilla, through whom the name of Vespasian's empress was passed on to a granddaughter who is revered as a confessor of the Faith.

A man of strict military discipline and simple tastes, Vespasian proved to be a conscientious and generally tolerant administrator. More importantly, following the upheavals of A.D. 68-69, his reign was welcome for its general tranquility and restoration of peace. In Vespasian Rome found a leader who made no great breaks with tradition, yet his ability ro rebuild the empire and especially his willingness to expand the composition of the governing class helped to establish a positive working model for the "good emperors" of the second century. In contrast to his immediate imperial predecessors, Vespasian died peacefully - at Aquae Cutiliae near his birthplace in Sabine country on 23 June, A.D. 79, after contracting a brief illness. The occasion is said to have inspired his deathbed quip: "Oh my, I must be turning into a god!"

Denarius. IMP CAES VESP AVG P M COS IIII, laureate head right / VES-TA to either side of Vesta standing left, holding simpulum & scepter. RSC 574
ecoli
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011. Titus 79-81 AD28 viewsTitus. 79-81 AD.

Titus was the beneficiary of considerable intelligence and talent, endowments that were carefully cultivated at every step of his career, from his early education to his role under his father's principate. Cassius Dio suggested that Titus' reputation was enhanced by his early death. [[17]] It is true that the ancient sources tend to heroicize Titus, yet based upon the evidence, his reign must be considered a positive one. He capably continued the work of his father in establishing the Flavian dynasty and he maintained a high degree of economic and administrative competence in Italy and beyond. In so doing, he solidified the role of the emperor as paternalistic autocrat, a model that would serve Trajan and his successors well.

AR Denarius (3.44 gm). Laureate head right/Radiate figure on rostral column. RIC II 16a; BMCRE 29; RSC 289. Fine. Scarce and interesting reverse type. Ex-CNG
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Claudius_TI-CLAVDIVS-CAESAR-AVG-P-M-TR-P-IMP____EX-S-C-P-P-OB-CIVES-SERVATOS_RIC-I-112_C-38_Q-001_34-36mm_23,63g-s.jpg
012 Claudius-I (41-54 A.D.), RIC I 112var. (?), Thracian ?, AE-Sestertius, EX-S-C/P-P/OB-CIVES/SERVATOS, Rare !!!,370 views012 Claudius-I (41-54 A.D.), RIC I 112var. (?), Thracian ?, AE-Sestertius, EX-S-C/P-P/OB-CIVES/SERVATOS, Rare !!!,
Claudius became “Father of the Country” in 50 AD, and this title was added to the coinage, at the end of the legend, with it’s abbreviation: PP. The reverse legend translates to “For Saving the Lives of Citizens.
avers:- TI-CLAVDIVS-CAESAR-AVG-P-M-TR-P-IMP-P-P, laureate head of Claudius right
revers:- No legend - Wreath, EX-S-C/P-P/OB-CIVES/SERVATOS within,
exe:-/-//--, diameter: 34-36mm, weight: 23,63g, axis:11h,
mint:Thracian ?, date: 50-54 A.D., ref: RIC-I-112, C-38,
Q-001
"RIC is in error to state that P P only appeared on Claudius' bronze coins in 50 AD. In fact Claudius became P P very early in 42 AD, and P P appeared immediately not only on his quadrantes, which are specifically dated to 42 by the title COS II, but also on his sestertii and middle bronzes.
Stylistically your coin should not be attributed to Rome, but to a Thracian mint perhaps active only towards the end of the reign. These coins, scarcer than the Rome-mint ones, are not recognized in RIC!" by Curtis Clay. Thank you "curtisclay".
5 commentsquadrans
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012 Claudius-I (41-54 A.D.), RIC I 112var. (?), Thracian ?, AE-Sestertius, EX-S-C/P-P/OB-CIVES/SERVATOS, Rare !!!, Re-Shot !342 views012 Claudius-I (41-54 A.D.), RIC I 112var. (?), Thracian ?, AE-Sestertius, EX-S-C/P-P/OB-CIVES/SERVATOS, Rare !!!, Re-Shot !
Claudius became “Father of the Country” in 50 AD, and this title was added to the coinage, at the end of the legend, with it’s abbreviation: PP. The reverse legend translates to “For Saving the Lives of Citizens.
avers:- TI-CLAVDIVS-CAESAR-AVG-P-M-TR-P-IMP-P-P, laureate head of Claudius right
revers:- No legend - Wreath, EX-S-C/P-P/OB-CIVES/SERVATOS within,
exe:-/-//--, diameter: 34-36mm, weight: 23,63g, axis:11h,
mint:Thracian ?, date: 50-54 A.D., ref: RIC-I-112, C-38,
Q-001
"RIC is in error to state that P P only appeared on Claudius' bronze coins in 50 AD. In fact Claudius became P P very early in 42 AD, and P P appeared immediately not only on his quadrantes, which are specifically dated to 42 by the title COS II, but also on his sestertii and middle bronzes.
Stylistically your coin should not be attributed to Rome, but to a Thracian mint perhaps active only towards the end of the reign. These coins, scarcer than the Rome-mint ones, are not recognized in RIC!" by Curtis Clay. Thank you "curtisclay".
1 commentsquadrans
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02 Augustus RIC 28821 viewsAugusts 27 B.C.- 14 A.D. AR Denarius. Rome mint, 19 B.C. P. Petronius Turpilianus, moneyer. (3.65g, 18.2m, 0h). Obv: TVRPILIANS IIIVIR FERON, Diad. and draped bust of Feronia r. Rev: CAESAR AVGVSTVS SIGN RECE, Parthian kneeling r. presenting standard w. X marked vexillum. RIC 288, BMC 14, RSC 484.

A historical type commemorating the return of the standards lost by Crassus at the battle of Carrhae during his Parthian campaign in 53 B.C. Rome was humiliated by the defeat and loss of several Legionary Eagles. Crassus and several of his generals were killed. Through diplomacy, Augusts secured the return of the Eagles, an important victory to tout on his coinage.

I've been wanting this type for some time because of it's historic significance, but as it's outside of my primary collecting area, I was willing to compromise on condition. This example is worn, but clearly recognizable. The obverse has banker's marks which seem to disappear or become much more scarce on denarii towards the end of the Republic and beginning of the Empire.
Lucas H
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020 - Nero AE As - RIC 543 59 viewsAE As
Obv:– IMP NERO CAESAR AVG P MAX TR P P P (separated with dots), Bare head right with globe at tip
Rev:– -, Victory flying left holding shield inscribed S P Q R, S - C
Minted in Lugdunum. Circa A.D. 66
Reference:– BMCRE 381. RIC Vol I Nero 543

A decent example with a broken patina, a decent portrait, clear legends with the dots in the legends clearly visible.

Please click on the image to see a larger photograph.
2 commentsmaridvnvm
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020 W. Asia Minor, Ioniia, c. 650 to 600 BC55 viewsElectrum hekte, 10mm, 2.75g very early Phokaic standard, VF
Raised square with cross pattern / Rough quadripartite incuse square. Very grainy surfaces. Sear COA
cf. Rosen 314 & 319; Traite pl. IV, 1 (Paris and London)
Lawrence Woolslayer
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0238 - 1/2 Real Fernando VI (year ?)2 viewsObv/ Coat of arms, crowned M and JB to the sides, around, FERDINAND - VI - D - G
Rev/ Castles and lions divided by cross; around, (HISPA)NIARUM - REX - (illegible date)

Ag, 14.9 mm, 0.94 g
Mint: Madrid
Cy98/9460 to 9545
Gifted, early 1990's
dafnis
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03 Domitian as Caesar RIC 920102 viewsAR Denarius, 2.96g
Rome mint, 76-77AD (Vespasian)
Obv: CAESAR AVG F DOMITIANVS; Head of Domitian, laureate, bearded, r.
Rev: COS IIII; Minerva stg. r. on prow, with spear and shield; to r., owl
RIC 920 (R). BMC spec. acquired 1947. RSC 45b. BNC -.
Ex Private Collection.

The first appearance of Minerva on a denarius struck for Domitian as Caesar under Vespasian. His devotion to the goddess came early in life, so it comes as no surprise he wished to honour her on the coins minted in his name. This denarius is a clear indication Domitian had some say in what reverse types were struck for him under Vespasian. The Minerva on prow is an early prototype of one of the four standard Minerva types (M2) Domitian would later extensively strike on his own denarii as Augustus. An extremely rare type for him as Caesar.

A pleasing coin with a Vespasian-like portrait.
6 commentsDavid Atherton
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04 Gaius (Caligula) RIC I 2223 viewsGaius (Caligula) 37-41 A.D. AR Denarius. Lugdunum (Lyons) Mint 37 AD. (3.3g, 18.5mm, 2h). Obv: C CAESAR AVG GERM P M TR POT COS, bare head right. Rev: anepigraphic, Augustus, radiate head right between two stars. RIC I 2, BMC 4, Sear 1808. Ex personal collection Steve McBride/Incitatus Coins.

Son of Germanicus, Gaius was adopted by Tiberius and was proclaimed Emperor on Tiberius’ death. His reign, marked by cruelty, was ended when he was assassinated by the Praetorian Guard. There is some question when the Imperial Mint was moved from Lugdunum to Rome, but the majority view holds at least Gaius’ early issues were still from Lugdunum.

With more than moderate wear and damage, this coin still has an almost complete obverse legend, and is a decent weight. It was very difficult for me to track down a denarius of Gaius.
2 commentsLucas H
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048 - Antoninus Pius, Ae Sestertius - RIC 789 24 viewsObv: ANTONINVS AVG PIVS P P, laureate head right
Rev: TR POT COS [IIII / ITALIA], S-C, Italia, towered, draped, seated left on globe, holding cornucopiae in right hand and sceptre, nearly vertical in left.
Minted in Rome. A.D. 145-161
Reference(s) – BMC 1719. Cohen 472. RIC III 789 (Rated S) citing Cohen.
maridvnvm
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055 NUMERIAN F9 BUST RRR14 viewsEMPEROR: Numerian
DENOMINATION: Antoninianus
OBVERSE: IMP C NUMERIANVS AVG, radiate and cuirassed bust right, holding spear
REVERSE: MARS VICTOR, C in right field
DATE: early 284 AD
MINT: Lugdunum
WEIGHT: 3.59 g
RIC: V-2,388
BASTIEN: 561 (6 ex.)
NOTE: very rare and sough-after bust type
Barnaba6
Faustina-Sr-RIC-394a.jpg
057. Faustina Senior.16 viewsDenarius, after 141 AD, Rome mint.
Obverse: DIVA AVG FAVSTINA / Bust of Faustina.
Reverse: PIETAS AVG / Pietas veiled, standing, dropping incense on altar, and holding a box.
3.59 gm., 18.5 mm.
RIC #394a; Sear #4598.

Faustina died early on in the reign of her husband. Most of her coinage is from the extensive memorial coinage issued in the years after her death. The portrait on this particular coin is exceptionally elegant and dignified.

Visible on the reverse (lower right edge) of this coin is an inclusion of copper that did not get melted and mixed with the silver when the planchet was made. That this coin is probably not a fouree is evidenced by the fact that it weighs a bit more than other denarii of the period.
Callimachus
Nero_RIC_I_15.jpg
06 Nero RIC I 1539 viewsNero. 54-68 A.D. AR Denarius. Rome Mint. 54 A.D. Oct.-Dec.. (3.43g, 19.1mm, 9h) . Obv: NERO CAESAR AVG IMP, bare head right. Rev: PONTIF MAX TR P IIII PP around oak-wreath enclosing EX SC. RIC I 15 (R2).

A worn but scarce pre-reform denarius from early in Nero’s reign. Despite the wear, the weight of this specimen is quite nice. The EX SC with the oak wreath could allude to the Senate’s awarding of the corona civica to Nero. This specimen also has a very unusual die axis for imperial coinage of the Roman mint from this time.
1 commentsLucas H
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064 - Septimius Severus AS - RIC unlisted39 viewsObv:– L SEPT SEV PERT AVG IMP II, Laureate head right
Rev:– SAL AV[G TR P II] COS II S--C, Salus sanding left, holding sceptre and patera over alter
Minted in Rome. Early A.D. 194
Reference(s) – Cohen -. RIC - (see below)

The following information provided courtesy of Mr. Curtis Clay.
A specimen of this coin is apparently misreported in RIC, p. 182, note *. It's a rare coin, only two such included in Curtis' unpublished 1972 die study of early Severan bronze coins.
Curtis knows the same rev. type muled with both dupondius and As obv. dies of 193 (IMP CAE L SEP SEV PERT AVG). It's not impossible that a sestertius with the same type might turn up someday!
Cohen 640 exactly describes this type, though omitting the IMP II in obverse legend, and calling the coin a sestertius.
maridvnvm
RI_064cn_img.jpg
064 - Septimius Severus denarius - RIC -58 viewsObv:– IMP CAE L SEP SEV PERT AVG COS - I, Laureate head right
Rev:– VICT AVG, Victory advancing left holding wreath and palm
Minted in Emesa, 194 - 195 A.D.
References:– RIC -

2.70g, 17.92mm, 0o 

The following comes from Curtis Clay “That die is under COS I in my cast collection.  I read the wedge on bust as a I, but no second stroke under the bust.
There are some early COS I coins were the reading may be intentional, but yours is one of a smaller later group where COS I is apparently just an error, because by that time COS II was the standard and only correct title.
I have casts of two other coins from the same dies as yours, Oxford and Bickford-Smith coll., and two from the same obv. die with crossed cornucopias rev. type.”
maridvnvm
RI_064es_img.jpg
064 - Septimius Severus denarius - RIC -40 viewsObv:– IMP CE L SEP SEV PERT AVG CO, Laureate head right
Rev:– BONI EVENTVC, Fides (sometimes referred to as Bonus Eventus) standing left holding basket of fruit and corn ears.
Minted in Emesa, Late A.D. 193 or Early A.D. 194
References:– RIC -, RSC -, BMCRE -.

2.47g, 18.29mm, 0o

This obverse legend variety makes it into RIC and BMCRE as a noted legend mixed in with the COS I series of A.D. 193 in association with a MANET AVG and a MONETAE AVG both cited from RD, where one example of each is listed. The reverse legend BONI EVENTVC is noted in RD as a var. of Cohen 68, which is listed with the COS II obverse legend with a single example listed and is listed in RIC from the RD hoards as a known variant of RIC 369.
1 commentsmaridvnvm
RI_064fl_img.jpg
064 - Septimius Severus denarius - RIC -50 viewsObv:– IMP CAE L SEP SEV PERT AVG, Laureate head right
Rev:– TR P IIII IMP II COS II, Mars standing right, resting on spear and shield
Minted in Alexandria, A.D. 194
References:– BMCRE -, RIC -, RSC -. RIN (Rivista Italiana di Nvmismatica Vol. XCVI (1994/1995)

2.72g. 17.78mm. 0o

Additional information from Curtis Clay:-
"Die match to example in British Museum, found at the site of a Roman villa in Kent, GB, in 1952. The same obv. die also occurs with the types MONETA AVG and LEG III IT AVG TR P COS.
Bickford-Smith recorded three other specimens, of which I also have plaster casts: his own coll. (probably now in BM), Klosterneuburg, and U.S. private collection. On these the rev. legend apparently ends COS rather than COS II.
This type was clearly struck in 194, when Septimius was TR P II and IMP III or IIII, so TR P IIII IMP II in the rev. legend is an error, the origin of which is obvious: the type is a rote copy of the identical type and legend on denarii of Lucius Verus of 164, Cohen 228-9. The titles apply to Lucius in 164, not Septimius in 194!"
maridvnvm
RI_064eo_img.jpg
064 - Septimius Severus denarius - RIC -44 viewsObv:– IMP CAE L SEP SEV PERT AVG II CO, Laureate head right
Rev:– VICTOR IVST AVG, Victory walking left, holding wreath in right hand, palm in left .
Minted in Emesa, Early A.D. 194
References:– RIC -, RSC -, BMCRE -.

2.98g, 17.65mm, 180o
maridvnvm
RI_064is_img~0.jpg
064 - Septimius Severus denarius - RIC -39 viewsObv:– IMP CAE L SEP SEV PERT AVG, Laureate head right
Rev:– TR P IIII IMP II COS, Mars standing right, resting on spear and shield
Minted in Alexandria, A.D. 194
References:– BMCRE -, RIC -, RSC -. cf. RIN (Rivista Italiana di Nvmismatica Vol. XCVI (1994/1995)

2.59g. 18.71mm. 0o

Additional information courtesy of Curtis Clay:-

"Bickford-Smith recorded three other specimens, of which I also have plaster casts: his own coll. (probably now in BM), Klosterneuburg, and U.S. private collection. On these the rev. legend apparently ends COS rather than COS II.
This type was clearly struck in 194, when Septimius was TR P II and IMP III or IIII, so TR P IIII IMP II in the rev. legend is an error, the origin of which is obvious: the type is a rote copy of the identical type and legend on denarii of Lucius Verus of 164, Cohen 228-9. The titles apply to Lucius in 164, not Septimius in 194!"
maridvnvm
RI_064nm_img.jpg
064 - Septimius Severus denarius - RIC -31 viewsObv:– IMP CAE L SEP SEV PERT AVG, Laureate head right
Rev:– TR P IIII IMP II COS, Mars standing right, resting on spear and shield
Minted in Alexandria, A.D. 194
References:– BMCRE -, RIC -, RSC -. cf. RIN (Rivista Italiana di Nvmismatica Vol. XCVI (1994/1995)

Additional information courtesy of Curtis Clay:-

"Bickford-Smith recorded three other specimens, of which I also have plaster casts: his own coll. (probably now in BM), Klosterneuburg, and U.S. private collection. On these the rev. legend apparently ends COS rather than COS II.
This type was clearly struck in 194, when Septimius was TR P II and IMP III or IIII, so TR P IIII IMP II in the rev. legend is an error, the origin of which is obvious: the type is a rote copy of the identical type and legend on denarii of Lucius Verus of 164, Cohen 228-9. The titles apply to Lucius in 164, not Septimius in 194!"
maridvnvm
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064 - Septimius Severus denarius - RIC 01250 viewsObv:– IMP CAE L SEP SEV PERT AVG, Laureate head right
Rev:– LEG XI CL / TR P COS, Legionary eagle between two standards, Capricorns on standards.
Minted in Rome. A.D. 193
Reference:– Cohen 268. RIC 12 (Scarce)

Capricorns were the symbols of the XIIII the legion though Capricorns have been noted on several other legions in error.

Legio XI Claudia Pia Fidelis dates back to the two legions (the other was the XIIth) recruited by Julius Caesar to invade Gallia in 58 BC, and it existed at least until early 5th century, guarding lower Danube in Durostorum (modern Silistra, Bulgaria).
1 commentsmaridvnvm
RI_064mj_img.jpg
064 - Septimius Severus denarius - RIC 01225 viewsObv:– IMP CAE L SEP SEV PERT AVG, Laureate head right
Rev:– LEG XI CL / TR P COS, Legionary eagle between two standards, Capricorns on standards.
Minted in Rome. A.D. 193
Reference:– Cohen 268. RIC 12 (Scarce)

Capricorns were the symbols of the XIIII the legion though Capricorns have been noted on several other legions in error.

Legio XI Claudia Pia Fidelis dates back to the two legions (the other was the XIIth) recruited by Julius Caesar to invade Gallia in 58 BC, and it existed at least until early 5th century, guarding lower Danube in Durostorum (modern Silistra, Bulgaria).
1 commentsmaridvnvm
RI 132dh img~0.jpg
064 - Septimius Severus denarius - RIC 01478 viewsObv:– IMP CAE L SEP SEV PERT AVG, Laureate head right
Rev:– LEG X-IIII GE-M M V / TR P COS, Legionary eagle between two standards, Capricorns shown on standard.
Minted in Rome. A.D. 193
Reference:– Cohen 272. BMCRE 19, RIC 14 (Scarce)

Early example of the bust type with straight hair rather than curly.
3 commentsmaridvnvm
RI 064hi img.jpg
064 - Septimius Severus denarius - RIC 02244 viewsObv:– IMP CAE L SEP SE-V PERT AVG, laureate head right
Rev:– VICT AVG TR P COS, Victory walking left, holding wreath in right hand, palm in left
Minted in Rome. A.D. 193
Reference:– BMCRE 30, RIC IV 22, RSC 682

Early example of the bust type with straight hair rather than curly.
1 commentsmaridvnvm
RI 064gn img.jpg
064 - Septimius Severus denarius - RIC 383 var20 viewsObv:– IMP CAE L SEP SEV PERT AVG COS II, Laureate head right
Rev:– FORTVNE REDVCI, Fortuna (Hilaritas) standing left holding long palm and cornucopia
Minted in Emesa, 194 A.D.
References:– RIC 383 var (unlisted long legend variant)
Die axis 0 degrees. Weight 2.05g.

The early bust style, similar to that used in the COS I series combined with the long reverse legend places this coin early in the COS II series.
maridvnvm
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064 - Septimius Severus denarius - RIC 42828 viewsObv:– IMP CAE L SEP SE-V PERT AVG COS II, Laureate head right
Rev:– VICTOR SEV-E-R AVG, Victory walking left, holding wreath in right hand, palm in left
Minted in Emesa. Early A.D. 194
Reference:– BMCRE 399. RIC IV 428 (S). RSC 749
maridvnvm
RI_064ed_img.jpg
064 - Septimius Severus denarius - RIC 42818 viewsObv:– IMP CAE L SEP SE-V PERT AVG COS II, Laureate head right
Rev:– VICTOR SEVE-R AVG, Victory walking left, holding wreath in right hand, palm in left
Minted in Emesa. Early A.D. 194
Reference:– BMCRE 399. RIC IV 428 (S). RSC 749
maridvnvm
RI_064ph_img.jpg
064 - Septimius Severus denarius - RIC 42832 viewsObv:– IMP CAE L SEP SE-V PERT AVG COS II, Laureate head right
Rev:– VICTOR S-EV-ER AVG, Victory walking left, holding wreath in right hand, palm in left
Minted in Emesa. Early A.D. 194
Reference:– BMCRE 399. RIC IV 428 (S). RSC 749

Obverse die match to my Moneta seated MONET AVG coins.
1 commentsmaridvnvm
RI_064rt_img.jpg
064 - Septimius Severus denarius - RIC 42821 viewsObv:– IMP CAE L SEP SE-V PERT AVG COS II, Laureate head right (Long head portrait)
Rev:– VICTOR SEVE-R AVG, Victory walking left, holding wreath in right hand, palm in left
Minted in Emesa. Early A.D. 194
Reference(s) – Cohen 749. BMCRE 399. RIC IV 428 (S). RSC 749

Harshly cleaned but bought because I have a few obverse die matches. This reverse legend is thought to be relatively early in the series and thus helps place this obverse die in the chronology.
maridvnvm
Maximinus-I_IMP-MAXIMINVS-PIVS-AVG_PROVIDENTIA-AVG_RIC_13,_RSC_77,_BMC_15_Q-001_0h_19,5-20mm_2,99g-s.jpg
065 Maximinus-I. Thrax, (235-238 A.D.), RIC IV-II 013, Rome, AR-Denarius, PROVIDENTIA AVG, Providentia satanding left, #262 views065 Maximinus-I. Thrax, (235-238 A.D.), RIC IV-II 013, Rome, AR-Denarius, PROVIDENTIA AVG, Providentia satanding left, #2
avers:- IMP-MAXIMINVS-PIVS-AVG, Laureate, draped bust right, early portrait resembling Severus Alexander.
revers:- PROVIDENTIA-AVG , Providentia standing left, with cornucopiae and wand pointed at globe at foot.
exerg: , diameter: 19,5-20mm, weight: 2,99g, axis: 0h,
mint: Rome, date: 235-236 A.D., ref: RIC-IV-II-13, p-141,
Q-002
quadrans
RI 066f img.jpg
066 - Caracalla denarius - RIC 19635 viewsObv:- ANTONINVS PIVS AVG BRIT, Laureate bust right
Rev:– P M TR P XV COS III P P, Salus seated left using patera to feed snake, coiled round an altar
Minted in Rome. A.D. 212.
Reference:– Van Meter 59/4. RIC 196. RCV02 6826. RSC 206.
The scan fails to show clearly that the coin is toned to an almost black finish.
maridvnvm
LarryW1910.jpg
0661 Focas, 602-61034 viewsÆ half follis, 23.4mm, 5.18g, Fair
Struck 602-603 at Nicomedia
Phocas and Leontia standing facing, with Phocas holding globus cruciger and Leontia, nimbate, holding cruciform sceptre, a cross between their heads / XX, cross above and NIKO B in exg. Scarce early issue, dark brown patina. Polished.
Ex: Glenn W. Woods
Sear 661; MIB 71
Lawrence Woolslayer
RI_068y_img.jpg
068 - Geta denarius - RIC 059a19 viewsObv:– P SEPTIMIVS GETA CAES, Bare headed, bearded, draped bust right
Rev:– PONTIF COS II, Genius, naked standing left, sacrificing out of patera over lighted altar and holding corn ears
Minted in Rome. early A.D. 209
Reference:– BMC p.274, 584. RIC 59a. RSC 114. 72 examples in RD.
maridvnvm
RI_068x_img.jpg
068 - Geta denarius - RIC 059a14 viewsObv:– P SEPTIMIVS GETA CAES, Bare headed, bearded, draped bust right
Rev:– PONTIF COS II, Genius, naked standing left, sacrificing out of patera over lighted altar and holding corn ears
Minted in Rome. early A.D. 209
Reference:– BMC p.274, 584. RIC 59a. RSC 114. 72 examples in RD.

BMC and RIC mention that the busts of Geta are bearded for this issue but this example doesn't show any trace of beard.
maridvnvm
90Hadrian__RIC725.jpg
0725 Hadrian AS Roma 132-34 AD Indulgentia25 viewsReference.
RIC 725; C. 849; BMC S. 462; Strack 817

Obv. HADRIANVS AVGVSTVS
Bare headed, draped and cuirassed bust right

Rev. INDVLGENTIA – AVG COS III P P in ex
Indulgentia seated l., extending r. hand and holding sceptre.

10.78 gr
27 mm
6h

Note.
Indulgentia. Clemency, lenity, grace, favour. -This word is used on Roman coins to denote either some permission given, some privilege bestowed, or some tribute remitted. -In inscriptions of a very early date, princes are called indulgentissimi.
(FORVM)
okidoki
RI 077p img.jpg
077 - Severus Alexander denarius - RIC 07924 viewsObv:– IMP C M AVR SEV ALEXAND AVG, Laureate, draped bust right, seen from the rear
Rev:– P M TR P VII COS II P P, Pax running left holding branch and sceptre
Minted in Rome. Early A.D. 228
References:– RIC 79, RSC 348
maridvnvm
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08 Domitian as Caesar RIC-108778 viewsAR Denarius, 3.54g
Rome Mint, 79 AD (Vespasian)
Obv: CAESAR AVG F DOMITIANVS COS VI; Head of Domitian, laureate, bearded, r.
Rev: PRINCEPS IVVENTVTIS; Vesta, std. l., with palladium and sceptre
RIC 1087 (C2). BMC 262. RSC 378. BNC 233.
Acquired from Amphora Coins, July 2008.

Vesta is supposed to be holding a palladium in her right hand, but on this example the legend covers up the palladium completely. It is barely visible (if at all) under the legend. Most examples of the type clearly show it in her out-stretched hand. A note for an aureus of the type in the BM (#261) notes - 'palladium hardly visible, sceptre nearly vertical'. There is no illustration of the specimen, so I'm guessing mine is similar.
vespasian70
LarryW1922.jpg
0956 Contans II, AD 641-66850 viewsGold solidus, 19.44mm, 4.49g, nearly EF
Struck c. 651-654 at Constantinople
d N CONSTAN[TINU]S PP AV, crowned bust facing, with long beard and mustache, wearing chlamys and holding globus cruciger in right hand / VICTORIA AVGU I, cross potent on three steps; CO[NOB] beneath.
Areas of flatness in the striking
Certificate of Authenticity by David R. Sear, ACCS
Ex: Glenn W. Woods
Sear 956; DOC 19j; MIB 23; Wroth/BMC 36; Tolstoi 57; CBN 41
Lawrence Woolslayer
Soloi_Stater_Amazon.jpg
0a Amazon Stater19 viewsSilver Stater 20mm Struck circa 440-410 B.C.
Soloi in Cilicia

Amazon kneeling left, holding bow, quiver on left hip
ΣOΛEΩN, Grape cluster on vine; A-Θ to either side of stalk, monogram to lower right

Sear 5602 var.; Casabonne Type 3; SNG France 135; SNG Levante

This coin depicts an amazon in historically accurate garb. Unfortunately, the bow is corroded away on this piece, but it is pointed toward her. She wears the Scythian hat, which also has a bit along the top corroded away. The quiver on her hip is an accurate portrayal of the gorytos (quiver), which was nearly two feet long, fashioned of leather, and often decorated. Fortunately, there is redundancy in this image, and a second bow is shown as in its place in the gorytos, which had separate chambers for arrows and the bow, where the archer stored it while not in use. The amazon has just finished stringing her bow and is adjusting the top hook to make sure the strings and limbs are properly aligned. She has strung the bow using her leg to hold one limb in place so she can use both hands to string the weapon. Her recurve bow was made of horn (ibex, elk, ox) wrapped with horse hair, birch bark, or sinew (deer, elk, ox) and glue (animal or fish) wrapped around a wood core. The bow was about 30 inches long. Arrow heads from grave sites come in bone, wood, iron, and bronze with two or three flanges; the shafts were made of reed or wood (willow, birch, poplar) and fletched with feathers. Poisoned arrows were sometimes painted to resemble vipers. A Scythian archer could probably fire 15-20 arrows per minute with accuracy to 200 feet and range to 500-600 feet. Distance archery with modern reconstructions suggests a maximum unaimed flight distance of 1,600 feet. (Mayor 209ff)

Soloi was founded about 700 B.C.and came under Persian rule. According to Diodorus, when the amazons were engaging in conquest in Asia Minor, the Cilicians accepted them willingly and retained their independence. Soloi may be named after Solois, a companion of Theseus, who married the amazon Antiope. The amazon on the coin may well be Antiope. (Mayor, 264-265)
Blindado
islamicMENORAH.jpg
1.1 Islamic Menorah coin75 viewsIslamic Jerusalem
After 696 AD (possibly 715, comemorating the builing of the Al Aksa Mosque)

5 branched Menorah
fascinating coin. this possilby reflects the early Islamic attempts to place itself in a chain beginning with Judaism, being fulfilled with Islam. By portraying the Menorah of the Temple, the minters may be trying to connect the Islamic Jerusalem with the ancient Jerusalem of Solomon and the Temple, religiously justifying their administration of the city.
Zam
LarryW1834.jpg
100 Kingdom of Bosporus, Rhescuporis II (III), AD 211–22688 viewsElectrum stater, 7.84g, nearly EF
Struck AD 215/6 at Panticapaeum
BACIΛEWC PHCKOVΠOPIΔOC, diademed and draped bust right; club before / Laureate and draped bust of bearded Caracalla right, BIΦ below.
Certificate of Authenticity by David R. Sear, ACCS
Ex; Freeman & Sear
MacDonald 555/2; Frolova 200, pl. 45, 14 (same dies); Sear GIC 5482v (date)
2 commentsLawrence Woolslayer
TrajSe51.JPG
102 AD: Triumph of Trajan in the first Dacian war and dedication of triumphal arch to Jupiter Optimus Maximus 340 viewsorichalcum sestertius (20.83g, 33mm, 6h). Rome mint. Struck AD 103-104.
IMP CAES NERVAE TRAIANO AVG GER DAC P M TR P COS V P P laureate head of Trajan facing right.
S·P·Q·R·OPTIMO PRINCIPI [r.b.,] S C [in ex.] monumental richly decorated triumphal arch; in the panel above pediment inscribed IOM (= Iovi Optimo Maximo)(nearly invisible on this specimen)
RIC 572 [R]; BMC 844; Cohen 547; Foss (Roman Historical Coins) 100:18
Ex CNG eAuct. 266; ex Deyo Collection
1 commentsCharles S
coin218.JPG
102. Trajan41 viewsTrajan

Hadrian saw to it that Trajan received all customary honors: the late emperor was declared a divus, his victories were commemorated in a great triumph, and his ashes were placed in the base of his column. Trajan's reputation remained unimpaired, in spite of the ultimate failure of his last campaigns. Early in his principate, he had unofficially been honored with the title optimus, "the best," which long described him even before it became, in 114, part of his official titulature. His correspondence with Pliny enables posterity to gain an intimate sense of the emperor in action. His concern for justice and the well-being of his subjects is underscored by his comment to Pliny, when faced with the question of the Christians, that they were not to be sought out, "nor is it appropriate to our age."

Denarius. IMP CAES NERVA TRAIAN AVG GERM, laureate head right / P M TR P COS II P P, Vesta seated left, veiled, holding patera & torch. RSC 203.
1 commentsecoli
coin229.JPG
106. Commodus32 viewsCommodus

According to Gibbon, the emperor Commodus spent the early years of his reign "in a seraglio of three hundred beautiful women and as many boys, of every rank and of every province." Later, adding bloodshed to his round of pleasures, he launched a career in murder, beginning with the dispatch of the usual senators, ministers and family members and continuing with the slaughter of beasts. Styling himself the Roman Hercules, he went as a performer into the amphitheater, where he cut down before the public a number of ostriches, a panther, a hundred lions, an elephant, a rhinoceros and a giraffe. He then entered the lists as a gladiator. Commodus fought 735 times and paid himself such a high fee for each appearance that a new tax had to be levied. He was strangled by a wrestler while drunk.

Denarius. 192 AD. L AEL AVREL COMM AVG P FEL, laureate head right / P M TR P XVII IMP VIII COS VII P P, Fides standing left holding standard & cornucopiae, star right. RSC 583a. RIC 233
ecoli
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107. Pertinax35 viewsPertinax

Only a mediocre public speaker, Pertinax was first and foremost a gritty old soldier. He was heavily built, had a pot belly, although it was said, even by his critics, that he possessed the proud air of an emperor.
He possessed some charm, but was generally understood to be a rather sly character. He also acquired a reputation for being mean and greedy. He apparently even went as far as serving half portions of lettuce and artichoke before he became emperor. It was a characteristic which would not serve him well as an emperor.

When he took office, Pertinax quickly realized that the imperial treasury was in trouble. Commodus had wasted vast sums on games and luxuries. If the new emperor thought that changes would need to be made to bring the finances back in order he was no doubt right. But he sought to do too much too quickly. In the process he made himself enemies.

The gravest error, made at the very beginning of his reign, was to decide to cut some of the praetorian's privileges and that he was going to pay them only half the bonus he had promised.
Already on 3 January AD 193 the praetorians tried to set up another emperor who would pay up. But that senator, wise enough to stay out of trouble, merely reported the incident to Pertinax and then left Rome.

The ordinary citizens of Rome however also quickly had enough of their new emperor. Had Commodus spoilt them with lavish games and festivals, then now Pertinax gave them very little.
And a truly powerful enemy should be the praetorian prefect Laetus. The man who had after all put Pertinax on the throne, was to play an important role in the emperor's fate. It isn't absolutely clear if he sought to be an honest advisor of the emperor, but saw his advise ignored, or if he sought to manipulate Pertinax as his puppet emperor. In either case, he was disappointed.

And so as Pertinax grew ever more unpopular, the praetorians once more began to look for a new emperor. In early March, When Pertinax was away in Ostia overseeing the arrangements for the grain shipments to Rome, they struck again. This time they tried to set up one of the consuls, Quintus Sosius Falco.

When Pertinax returned to Rome he pardoned Falco who'd been condemned by the senate, but several praetorians were executed. A slave had given them away as being part of the conspiracy.
These executions were the final straw. On 28 March AD 193 the praetorians revolts.
300 hundred of them forced the gates to the palace. None of the guards sought to help their emperor.
Everyone, so it seemed, wanted rid of this emperor. So, too, Laetus would not listen as Pertinax ordered him to do something. The praetorian prefect simply went home, leaving the emperor to his fate.

Pertinax did not seek to flee. He stood his ground and waited, together with his chamberlain Eclectus. As the praetorians found him, they did not discover an emperor quivering with fear, but a man determined on convincing them to put down their weapons. Clearly the soldiers were over-awed by this brave man, for he spoke to them for some time. But eventually their leader found enough courage to step forwards and hurl his spear at the emperor. Pertinax fell with the spear in his chest. Eclectus fought bravely for his life, stabbing two, before he two was slain by the soldiers.
The soldiers then cut off Pertinax' head, stuck it on a spear and paraded through the streets of Rome.

Pertinax had ruled for only 87 days. He was later deified by Septimius Severus.

RI1. Pertinax. A.D. 193. AR denarius (18.0 mm, 2.74 g, 7 h). Rome mint. Rare. IMP CAES P HELV PERTIN AVG, laureate head right / OPI DIVIN TR P COS II, Ops seated left, holding two stalks of grain, resting hand on seat of throne. RIC 8a; RSC 33; BMCRE 19. aVF, flan crack.
ecoli
William_the_lion_AR_penny.JPG
1169 - 1214, William I “the lion”, AR Penny, Struck 1205 - 1230 at Perth or Edinburgh, Scotland20 viewsObverse: + LE REI WILAM•: Head of William I facing left, wearing crown of pellets, sceptre to left, within inner circle of pellets. All surrounded by outer circle of pellets. Cross potent in legend.
Reverse: + hVE WALTER: Voided short cross, six pointed star in each angle, within inner circle of pellets. All surrounded by outer circle of pellets. Cross potent in legend. (No mint name on coin. Moneyers: Hue (cognate with the modern English name of Hugh) and Walter, the Edinburgh and Perth moneyers working jointly)
Short cross, phase B. Late William I and posthumous issue struck c.1205 to c.1230.
William I died in 1214 but it would appear that although Alexander II was 16 years old when he came to the throne he continued his father's issues for some 15 years and struck no coins in his own name until around 1230.
Diameter: 21mm | Weight: 1.3gm | Die Axis: 6
SPINK: 5029

William I was not known as "the Lion" during his own lifetime, the title was attached to him because of his flag or standard, a red lion rampant on a yellow background which went on to become the Royal Banner of Scotland which is still used today.

William I was crowned on 24th December 1165, he came to the throne when his elder brother Malcolm IV died at the age of 24 on 9th December 1165.
Early in his reign William attempted to regain control of Northumbria which had been lost, in 1157 during the reign of Malcolm IV, to the Anglo-Normans under Henry II. He thereby lent support to the English barons who rebelled against Henry II in 1173. In 1174 however, while actively assisting the rebels at the Battle of Alnwick, William was captured by Henry's forces and taken to Falaise in Normandy. He was forced, under the terms of the Treaty of Falaise which he signed in December, to do homage for the whole of Scotland and also to hand over the castles of Roxburgh, Berwick and Edinburgh. Edinburgh, however, was later returned to him as part of the dowry of Ermengarde, a cousin of Henry II, whom William married in 1186.
The Treaty of Falaise remained in force for the next fifteen years until the new English King Richard the Lionheart, needing money for the Third Crusade, agreed to terminate it in return for 10,000 marks. William also attempted to purchase Northumbria from Richard, however his offer of 15,000 marks was rejected due to him wanting all the castles within the lands, something Richard was not willing to concede.
Relations between Scotland and England remained tense during the first decade of the 13th century and in August 1209 King John decided to exploit the weakening leadership of the ageing Scottish monarch by marching a large army to Norham on the south side of the River Tweed. William bought John off with the promise of a large sum of money, and later, in 1212, he agreed to his only surviving son Alexander, marrying John's eldest daughter, Joan.
William I died in Stirling in 1214 and lies buried in Arbroath Abbey, which he is credited with founding in 1178. He was succeeded by his son, who reigned as Alexander II.
3 comments*Alex
1189_-_1199_Richard_I_AR_Denier.JPG
1189 - 1199, RICHARD I (the lionheart), AR Denier minted at Melle, Poitou, France44 viewsObverse: +RICARDVS REX. Cross pattée within braided inner circle, all within braided outer circle.
Reverse: PIC / TAVIE / NSIS in three lines within braided circle.
Diameter: 20mm | Weight: 1.0gms | Die Axis: 2
SPINK: 8008 | Elias: 8

Poitou was an Anglo-Gallic province in what is now west-central France and its capital city was Poitiers, the mint at this time was however located at Melle. Melle was an active centre of minting during the early Middle Ages due to the important silver mines located under and around the city. This is the only coin issue struck during the reign of Richard I to bear his own name and titles as King of England.

Richard I was King of England from 1189 until his death on 6th April 1199. He also ruled several territories outwith England, and was styled as Duke of Normandy, Aquitaine and Gascony, Lord of Cyprus, Count of Poitiers, Anjou, Maine, and Nantes, as well as being overlord of Brittany at various times during the same period. He was the third of five sons of King Henry II of England and Duchess Eleanor of Aquitaine. He was known as Richard the Lionheart (Richard Cœur de Lion) because of his reputation as a great military leader and warrior when, at the age of 16 and commanding his own army, he had put down rebellions against his father in Poitou.
Richard was a commander during the Third Crusade, and led the campaign after the departure of Philip II of France. However, although he scored several notable victories against the Muslims led by Saladin, he failed to retake Jerusalem from them.
Although Richard was born in England and spent his childhood there before becoming king, he lived most of his adult life in the Duchy of Aquitaine. Following his accession, his life was mostly spent on Crusade, in captivity, or actively defending his lands in France. Rather than regarding England as a responsibility requiring his presence as ruler, he appears to have used it merely as a source of revenue to support his armies. Nevertheless, he was seen as a pious hero by his subjects and he remains one of the few kings of England who is remembered by his epithet rather than by his regnal number, and even today he is still an iconic figure in both England and France.
3 comments*Alex
King_John_AR_Penny.JPG
1199 – 1216, John, AR Short cross penny, Struck 1205 - 1216 at Winchester, England22 viewsObverse: HENRICVS REX around central circle enclosing a crowned, draped and bearded facing bust of the king holding a sceptre tipped with a cross pommee in his right hand, bust extending to edge of flan.
Reverse: +ANDREV•ON•WI around voided short cross within circle, crosslets in each quarter. Moneyer: Andrev, cognate with the modern English name of Andrew.
Diameter: 19mm | Weight: 1.2gms | Die Axis: 4
Class 5b
SPINK: 1351

The class four type short cross pennies of Henry II continued to be struck during the early years of John's reign, but in 1205 a recoinage was begun and new short cross pennies of better style replaced the older issues. Sixteen mints were initially employed for this recoinage but they were reduced to ten later on. All John's coins continued to bear his father's (Henry II) title of henricvs rex.

John was King of England from 1199 until his death in 1216. The baronial revolt at the end of John's reign led to the sealing of the first Magna Carta, a document sometimes considered an early step in the evolution of the constitution of the United Kingdom.
John, the youngest of the five sons of Henry II and Eleanor of Aquitaine, was not expected to inherit significant lands which resulted in him being given the nickname John Lackland. However, after the failed rebellion of his elder brothers between 1173 and 1174, John became Henry's favourite child. He was appointed Lord of Ireland in 1177 and given lands in England and on the continent. John's elder brothers William, Henry and Geoffrey died young and when Richard I became king in 1189, John was the potential heir to the throne. John unsuccessfully attempted a rebellion against Richard's administration whilst his brother was participating in the Third Crusade but despite this, after Richard died in 1199, John was proclaimed King of England.
Contemporary chroniclers were mostly critical of John's performance as king, and his reign has been the subject of much debate by historians from the 16th century onwards. These negative qualities have provided extensive material for fiction writers since the Victorian era, and even today John remains a recurring character within popular culture, primarily as a villain in films and stories regarding the Robin Hood legends.
2 comments*Alex
1205_-_1216_John_AR_Penny_Dublin.JPG
1199-1216, John, AR Penny, Struck 1207 – 1211 at Dublin, Ireland10 viewsObverse: IOHANNES REX around triangle enclosing a crowned and draped facing bust of King John holding, in his right hand, a sceptre tipped with a cross pommée which extends through the side of the triangle into the legend. Quatrefoil to right of bust.
Reverse: ROBERD ON DIVE around triangle containing sun over crescent moon and a star in each angle. Cross pattée at apex of each point of the triangle and above legend on each of the three sides. Moneyer: Roberd, cognate with the modern English name of Robin.
Third issue “REX” coinage, struck to the same weight and fineness as the English standard.
This was the only coinage struck by King John in his own name.
Diameter: 18mm | Weight: 1.2gms | Die Axis: 4
SPINK: 6228

John was King of England from 1199 until his death in 1216. The baronial revolt at the end of John's reign led to the sealing of the first Magna Carta, a document sometimes considered an early step in the evolution of the constitution of the United Kingdom.
John, the youngest of the five sons of Henry II and Eleanor of Aquitaine, was not expected to inherit significant lands which resulted in him being given the nickname John Lackland. However, after the failed rebellion of his elder brothers between 1173 and 1174, John became Henry's favourite child. He was appointed Lord of Ireland in 1177 and given lands in England and on the continent. John's elder brothers William, Henry and Geoffrey died young and when Richard I became king in 1189, John was the potential heir to the throne. John unsuccessfully attempted a rebellion against Richard's administration whilst his brother was participating in the Third Crusade but despite this, after Richard died in 1199, John was proclaimed King of England.
King John contracted dysentery at Lynn in 1216 but, just before his death, he managed to dictate a brief will. This will still survives and as part of it John requested: "I will that my body be buried in the church of St. Mary and St. Wulfstan of Worcester".
Some of King John's favourite hunting grounds were in Worcester, at Kinver and Feckenham, and he had a special affection for Saint Wulfstan, one of the two great Anglo-Saxon saints whose shrines and tombs were also at Worcester. Both Saint Wulfstan and Saint Oswald can be seen in miniature beside the head of the effigy of King John on his tomb.
Medieval effigies usually show the subject in the prime of life, however the effigy on King John's tomb is unique in that not only is it a life-like image of him, it is also the oldest royal effigy in England.
King John's tomb has been opened twice, once in 1529 and again in 1797. At the first opening it was said that John's head was covered with a monk's cowl, however it is now thought that this was probably his coronation cap. When the tomb was opened for the second time the antiquarians responsible discovered that a robe of crimson damask had originally covered the king's body but, by 1797, most of the embroidery had deteriorated. They also found the remains of a sword which lay down the left side of the body along with parts of its scabbard.
3 comments*Alex
HENRY_III.JPG
1216 – 1272, Henry III, AR Penny, Struck 1248 - 1250 at London, England (Long cross type)45 viewsObverse: HENRICVS REX : III. Crowned bust of Henry III facing within circle of pellets. Mintmark: Six pointed star.
Reverse: NICOLE ON LVND. Voided long cross dividing legend into quarters, trefoil in each quarter of inner circle. Moneyer: Nicole, cognate with the modern English name of Nicholas. The surname Nicole originates in the Netherlands where it was notable for its various branches, and associated status or influence. The modern given name Nicole is a French feminine derivative of the masculine given name Nicolas.
Diameter: 19mm | Weight: 1.3gms | Die Axis: 6
SPINK: 1363

The First Barons' War (1215–1217) was a civil war in England in which a group of rebellious barons led by Robert Fitzwalter and supported by a French army under the future Louis VIII of France, waged war against King John of England. The war resulted from King John's refusal to accept and abide by the Magna Carta, which he had been forced to put his seal to on 15th June 1215, as well as from Louis' own ambitions regarding the English throne.
It was in the middle of this war that King John died leaving his son, the nine year old Henry III (who had been moved to safety at Corfe Castle in Dorset along with his mother, Queen Isabella) as his heir.
On his deathbed John appointed a council of thirteen executors to help Henry reclaim the kingdom, requesting that his son be placed into the guardianship of William Marshal, 1st Earl of Pembroke. The loyalists decided to crown Henry immediately to reinforce his claim to the throne. William knighted the boy, and Cardinal Guala Bicchieri, the papal legate to England, then oversaw his coronation at Gloucester Cathedral on 28th October 1216. In the absence of the archbishops of either Canterbury or York, Henry was anointed by the bishops of Worcester and Exeter, and crowned by Peter des Roches, bishop of Winchester. During the civil war the royal crown had been lost, so instead, the ceremony used a simple gold corolla belonging to Queen Isabella. In 1217, Henry's forces, led by William Marshal, finally defeated the rebels at the battles of Lincoln and Sandwich.
Henry's early rule was dominated first by Hubert de Burgh, 1st Earl of Kent and Justiciar of England and Ireland, then by Peter des Roches, and they re-established royal authority after the war. In 1225 Henry promised to abide by the final and definitative version of the Magna Carta, freely authenticated by the great seal of Henry III himself, which protected the rights of the major barons and placed a limit on royal power. It is the clauses of this, the 1225 Magna Carta signed by Henry III, not the King John Magna Carta of 1215, which are on the Statute Books of the United Kingdom today.
4 comments*Alex
1280_-1286_Alexander_III_AR_Penny_SCOTLAND.JPG
1249 - 1286, Alexander III, AR Penny, Struck 1280 - 1286 at Roxburgh, Scotland16 viewsObverse: + ALEXANDER DEI GRA . Crowned head of Alexander III facing left within circle of pellets; sceptre topped with fleur-de-lis before. Cross potent in legend.
Reverse: REX SCOTORVM +. Long cross pattée dividing legend into quarters, with three pierced mullets of six points and one mullet of seven points in quarters of inner circle. The total of 25 points is indicative of the mint of Roxburgh.
Class Mb with unbarred “A”, wider portrait and cross potent mintmark in legend.
Roxburgh only accounts for some 9% of Alexander's second coinage so issues from this mint are quite rare.
Diameter: 18mm | Weight: 1.0gm | Die Axis: 3
SPINK: 5054

Alexander III's reign saw the introduction of the round halfpenny and farthing to Scottish medieval coinage.
Following the English recoinage of Edward I in 1279, Alexander introduced his second coinage which began in 1280 and ended when he died in 1286. This coin was therefore struck between those dates.

Alexander III was born at Roxburgh, he came to the throne when he was just 7 years old following the death of his father, Alexander II.
At the age of ten, in 1251, Alexander married Margaret, daughter of Henry III of England. Henry seized the opportunity to demand from his son-in-law homage from the Scottish kingdom. Alexander did not comply but In 1255, after a meeting between the English and Scottish kings at Kelso, he was compelled to consent to the creation of a regency representative of both monarchs.
The early years of Alexander III’s reign were dominated by a power struggle between the two factions, but when he reached the age of 21 he was able to rule in his own right. His first action was to claim control of the Western Isles which were then under the domination of Norway. The Norwegian King Haakon rejected the claim, and in 1263, responded with a formidable invasion force which sailed around the west coast of Scotland and halted off the Isle of Arran. Alexander craftily delayed negotiations until the autumn storms began which resulted in the Norwegian ships being greatly damaged. Haakon, losing patience, attacked the Scots at Largs, but the battle proved indecisive and his position became hopeless. The Norwegians set sail for home but Haakon died en route, on Orkney, towards the end of the year. In 1266, at the Treaty of Perth, Norway formally ceded the Western Isles and the Isle of Man to Scotland in return for a monetary payment.
Alexander, when only 44 years old, met his end on the night of 19th March 1286. After entertaining guests at Edinburgh Castle he decided that night that he would return home to his wife near Kinghorn. His aides advised against it because there was a storm and the party would have to travel in darkness for many miles along a treacherous coastal path. Alexander was determined to travel anyway and ignored his advisors. It is not clear what happened, but it seems he got separated from the rest of his group and his horse lost its footing in the dark. The following day Alexander's body, and that of his horse, was found on the shore at the foot of the cliffs, the King's neck was broken. In 1886, a monument to him was erected in Kinghorn, on the side of the cliffs, at the approximate location of Alexander's death.
Alexander had no heirs, which ultimately led to a war with England that lasted almost thirty years.
1 comments*Alex
RI 125v img.jpg
125 - Aurelian Ant. - RIC 00634 viewsObv:– IMP C AVRELIANVS AVG, Radiated cuirassed bust right
Rev:– PACATOR ORBIS, Sol walking left, right hand raised, left hand holding whip
Minted in Lugdunum (AL). End A.D. 274 to early A.D. 275
Reference:– Bastien 1 (9). RIC 6
maridvnvm
RI 125z img.jpg
125 - Aurelian Ant. - RIC 006 28 viewsObv:– IMP C AVRELIANVS AVG, Radiated cuirassed bust right
Rev:– PACATOR ORBIS, Sol walking left, right hand raised, left hand holding whip
Minted in Lugdunum (CL). End A.D. 274 to early A.D. 275
Reference:– Bastien 3. RIC 6

Ex auction Grün 10, Lot 721, ex Philippe Gysen collection
maridvnvm
RI_125ag_img.jpg
125 - Aurelian Ant. - RIC 366 Bust Type F16 viewsObv:– IMP AVRELIANVS AVG, Radiate and cuirassed bust right
Rev:– RESTITVTOR EXERCITI, Mars in military dress standing right, holding spear in left hand, giving globe to Emperor standing left , holding long sceptre in left hand.
Minted in Cyzicus. (//XXI). early – summer A.D. 275
Reference:– Cohen 206. RIC 366 Bust Type F (Scarce). RIC temp #3080 (8 ex.).

3.75 gms. 25.15 mm.
maridvnvm
RI_125ai_img~0.jpg
125 - Aurelian Ant. - RIC 366 Bust Type F11 viewsObv:– IMP AVRELIANVS AVG, Radiate and cuirassed bust right
Rev:– RESTITVTOR EXERCITI, Mars in military dress standing right, holding spear in left hand, giving globe to Emperor standing left , holding long sceptre in left hand.
Minted in Cyzicus. (B//XXI). early – summer A.D. 275
Reference:– Cohen 206. RIC 366 Bust Type F (Scarce). RIC temp #3088 (45 ex.).
maridvnvm
RI_125aj_img.jpg
125 - Aurelian Ant. - RIC 366 Bust Type F11 viewsObv:– IMP AVRELIANVS AVG, Radiate and cuirassed bust right
Rev:– RESTITVTOR EXERCITI, Mars in military dress standing right, holding spear in left hand, giving globe to Emperor standing left , holding long sceptre in left hand.
Minted in Cyzicus. (E//XXI). early – summer A.D. 275
Reference:– Cohen 206. RIC 366 Bust Type F (Scarce).
maridvnvm
RI_126a_img.jpg
126 - Severina Ant. - RIC 00135 viewsObv:– SEVERINA AVG, Diademed and draped bust right on crescent
Rev:– CONCOR-D MILIT, Concordia seated left holding patera and cornucopia
Minted in Lugdunum (BL). End A.D. 274 to early A.D. 275
Reference:– Bastien 2 (12). Cohen 5. RIC 1
maridvnvm
1305_-1306_Edward_I_LONDON_PENNY.JPG
1272 - 1307, EDWARD I, AR Penny, Struck 1305 - 1306 at London, England14 viewsObverse: + EDWAR ANGL DNS HYB. Crowned bust of Edward I facing within circle of pellets. Cross pattée in legend.
Reverse: CIVITAS LONDON. Long cross dividing legend into quarters, trefoil in each quarter of inner circle.
Undated Penny, type 10cf1
Diameter: 18.5mm | Weight: 1.2gms | Die Axis: 9
SPINK: 1410

Edward I began a major recoinage in 1279 which consisted not only of pennies and new round half-pennies and farthings, but also introduced a new denomination, a fourpenny piece called the "Groat".

Edward I was King of England from 1272 – 1307. He was the eldest surviving son of Henry III and Eleanor of Provence. The contests between his father and the barons led by Simon de Montfort called Edward early into active life when he restored the royal authority within months by defeating and killing de Montfort at the battle of Evesham in 1265. He then proceeded to Palestine, where no conquest of any importance was achieved. After further campaigns in Italy and France he returned to England on his father's death and was crowned at Westminster Abbey in 1274.
Edward was popular because he identified himself with the growing tide of nationalism sweeping the country, displayed later in his persecution and banishment of the Jews which was the culmination of many years of anti-semitism in England.
Edward now turned his attention to the mountainous land to the west which had never been completely subdued. So, following a revolt in the Principality of Wales against English influence, Edward commenced a war which ended in the annexation of the Principality to the English Crown in 1283. He secured his conquest by building nine castles to watch over it and created his eldest son, Edward the Prince of Wales in 1301.
Edward's great ambition, however, was to gain possession of Scotland, but the death of Margaret, the Maid of Norway, who was to have been married to Edward's son, for a time frustrated the king's designs. However the sudden death of the King of Scotland, Alexander III, and the contested succession soon gave him the opportunity to intervene. He was invited by the Scots to arbitrate and choose between the thirteen competitors for the Scottish throne. Edward's choice, John Balliol, who he conceived as his puppet, was persuaded to do homage for his crown to Edward at Newcastle but was then forced to throw off Edward's overlordship by the indignation of the Scottish people. An alliance between the French and the Scots now followed, and Edward, then at war with the French king over possession of Gascony, was compelled to march his army north. Edward invaded Scotland in 1296 and devastated the country, which earned him the sobriquet 'Hammer of the Scots'. It was at this time that the symbolic Stone of Destiny was removed from Scone. Edward's influence had tainted Balliol's reign and the Scottish nobility deposed him and appointed a council of twelve to rule instead. Balliol abdicated and was eventually sent to France where he retired into obscurity, taking no more part in politics. Scotland was then left without a monarch until the accession of Robert the Bruce in 1306.
Meanwhile Edward assumed the administration of the country. However the following summer a new opposition to Edward took place under William Wallace whose successes, notably at Stirling Bridge, forced Edward to return to Scotland with an army of 100,000 men. Although he defeated Wallace's army at Falkirk, and Wallace himself was betrayed, Edward's unjust and barbaric execution of him as a traitor in London made Wallace a national hero in Scotland, and resistance to England became paramount among the people. All Edward's efforts to reduce the country to obedience were unravelling, and after the crowning of Robert Bruce, Earl of Carrick, as Robert I of Scotland in 1306 an enraged Edward assembled another army and marched yet again against the Scots. However, Edward only reached Burgh-on-Sands, a village near Carlisle, when he died. His body was taken back to London and he was buried at Westminster Abbey.
Edward I was married twice: to Eleanor of Castile, by whom he had sixteen children, and Margaret of France by whom he had three. Twelve memorials to his first wife stood between Nottingham and London to mark the journey taken by her funeral cortege. Three of those memorials, known as “Eleanor Crosses”, can still be seen today at Geddington, Hardingstone near Northampton and Waltham Cross. London's Charing Cross is also named after one, but the original was demolished in 1647 and the monument seen there today is a Victorian replica.
1 comments*Alex
128-1_Decia_2.jpg
128/1. Decia - denarius (206-200 BC)19 viewsAR Denarius (uncertain mint, 206-200 BC)
O/ Helmeted head of Roma right; X behind head.
R/ The Dioscuri galloping right; shield & carnyx below horses; ROMA in exergue.
4.01g; 20.5mm
Crawford 128/1 (less than 10 obverse dies/less than 12 reverse dies)
- Privately bought from Münzen & Medaillen Basel.
- Ex collection of Elvira Elisa Clain-Stefanelli (1914-2001), former director of the National Numismatic Collection (part of the Smithsonian Institute).
- Naville Numismatics Live Auction 29, lot 479.

* Anonymous (shield & carnyx), Decius?:

This very rare issue has traditionally been attributed to a descendant of a line of three heroes named Publius Decius Mus. The first of that name was Consul in 340 BC; he received the Grass Crown after having saved his army from destruction against the Samnites, then sacrificed himself at the Battle of Vesuvius during his consulship in an act of devotio (exchanging his life against the victory of his army). His son was four times Consul (312, 308, 297 and 295 BC) and similarly sacrificed himself at the Battle of Sentinum in 295 BC against a coalition of Etruscans, Samnites, and Gauls. The third of that name was Consul in 279 BC and fought against Pyrrhus, who successfully thwarted his attempt to sacrifice himself like his ancestors (cf. discussion in Broughton, vol. I, p. 193).

300 years later, Trajan restored several issues of the Republic, including this one, but with the addition of DECIVS MVS on the obverse (RIC 766). Babelon thus assumed that this denarius was minted by the son of the last Publius Decius Mus (Decia 1). In this hypothesis, the shield and Carnyx refers to the second Mus -- the one who fought the Gauls.

However, Crawford contested this view, writing: "The restoration of this issue by Trajan with the added legend DECIVS MVS provides no grounds whatever for supposing that it was originally struck by someone of that name - the family was certainly extinct by this period."

It is still very strange that Trajan picked this rare denarius, from an irregular mint, for restoration. He could have chosen many other anonymous issues of the early Roman coinage, and simply add the name of Decius Mus. It thus shows that the imperial mint had retained some specimens or archives of previous issues up to the 3rd century BC, because due to its rarity, this denarius had already disappeared from circulation by the time of Trajan. A list of the magistrates behind each issue could therefore have been kept as well; Trajan might have selected the moneyers whom he thought were significant for the history of Rome and restored their issue. A Publius Decius Subulo was living in these years (Livy, xliii. 17) and perhaps minted this coin; his name could have been preserved in the archives of the mint, which might have led Trajan to pick his denarius for restoration.
1 commentsJoss
14-Gordian-III-RIC-116.jpg
13. Gordian III / RIC 116.24 viewsDenarius, 240 AD, Rome mint.
Obverse: IMP GORDIANVS PIVS FEL AVG / Laureate bust of Gordian.
Reverse: VIRTVTI AVGVSTI / Hercules standing, resting right hand on hip and left hand club set on rock; lion-skin beside club.
3.58 gm., 20 mm.
RIC #116; Sear #8684.

The chronology of the denarii coinage of Gordian III has been poorly understood because Roman Imperial Coinage (RIC) has it mixed up in its listings. For example, it will tell you that 5 denarii (Diana, Pietas, Salus, Securitas, and Venus) were issued in the summer of 241 to commemorate the marriage of Gordian and Tranquillina. Recent thinking tells another entirely different story. The following summary is based on a posting by Curtis Clay, November 25, 2011, on the Forum Ancient Coins Classical Numismatics Discussion Board.
Although antoniniani were issued for a while under Caracalla and Elagabalus, the denarius was the standard silver denomination throughout the reigns of Severus Alexander, Maximinus Thrax, and into the first part of the joint reign of Balbinus & Pupienus. (This, by the way, is when the PIETAS AVGG denarius of Gordian as Caesar was issued.) Sometime during the short reign of Balbinus & Pupienus, the antoninianus supplanted the denarius as the standard silver denomination. When Gordian III became emperor (July 238), his administration continued to follow the then current practice of issuing only antoniniani.

Early in 240, Gordian apparently decided to revert back to the traditional coinage of the Empire and began to issue only denarii. The denarii issued at this time were the following:

P M TR P III COS P P / Horseman
DIANA LVCIFERA
PIETAS AVGVSTI
SALVS AVGVSTI
SECVRITAS PVBLICA
VENVS VICTRIX

No antoniniani exist with these reverse types.

The next issue of denarii was issued in the summer of 240 after Gordian became COS II, and consists of these types:

P M TR P III COS II P P / Emperor standing
P M TR P III COS II P P / Apollo seated
AETERNITATI AVG
IOVIS STATOR
LAETITIA AVG N
VIRTVTI AVGVSTI

Within a short time, however, it was decided to go back to having the antoninianus as the standard silver denomination. Antoniniani were issued again, at first with the same reverse types as the second issue of denarii. That is why these reverse types exist on denarii and antoniniani even though they were not issued at the same time.

So the period the mint issued denarii rather than antoniniani as the standard silver denomination lasted from about March through August, 240. This was the last time denarii were issued for general circulation. The antoninianus lasted until Diocletian’s coinage reform of 295, after which Roman coinage was so vastly different that there was no question of returning to the denarius.

The 13 denarii of Gordian III are presented in this album in this order:
Gordian III as Caesar denarius - 1 coin.
First issue of denarii - 6 coins.
Second issue of denarii - 6 coins.
Callimachus
RI_130ba_img.jpg
130 - Tacitus Antoninianus - RIC -19 viewsObv:– IMP C M CL TACITVS AVG, Radiate, draped and cuirassed bust right
Rev:– CONSERVAT MILIT, Mars standing facing, turned right, spear (tip up) in left hand, presenting globe in right hand to emperor standing facing, turned left, scepter in hand.
Minted in Serdica (S in exe)
Reference:– Cohen -. RIC -. LV 2386 - 1 example. Estiot P. 404 citing single example in La Venera.

Nearly fully silvered.
maridvnvm
RI 130ag img.jpg
130 - Tacitus Antoninianus - RIC 026 (BA in exe)20 viewsObv:– IMP C M CL TACITVS AVG, Radiate, draped and cuirassed bust right
Rev:– FIDES MILITVM, Fides standing left with two standards
Minted in Lugdunum (BA in exe.) Emission 3 Officina 2, in early 276 A.D.
References:– Cohen 45. Bastien 56 (3 3examples cited), RIC 26 Bust type C
maridvnvm
RI 130k img.jpg
130 - Tacitus Antoninianus - RIC 027 (BA in exe)36 viewsObv:– IMP CL TACITVS AVG, Radiate, draped and cuirassed bust right
Rev:– FIDES MILITVM, Fides standing left with two standards
Minted in Lugdunum (BA in exe.) Emission 3 Officina 2, in early 276 A.D.
References:– Cohen 47. Bastien 57 (41), RIC 27 Bust type C
maridvnvm
RI 130af img.jpg
130 - Tacitus Antoninianus - RIC 033 Bust Type C var (DA in exe)25 viewsObv:– IMP C M CL TACITVS AVG, Radiate, draped and cuirassed bust right
Rev:– PAX AVG, Pax standing left, holding olive branch and sceptre
Minted in Lugdunum (DA in exe), Emission 3 Officina 4. Early A.D. 276
References:– Cohen 64, Bastien 65, RIC 33 Bust Type C var. (Not listed for this officina in RIC). Estiot 1185. La Venera 1800. Minster hoard 316
maridvnvm
RI 130x img.jpg
130 - Tacitus Antoninianus - RIC 055 (BA)27 viewsObv:– IMP CL TACITVS AVG, Radiate, draped and cuirassed bust right
Rev:– RESTITVTOR ORBIS, Victory standing right, presenting wreath to emperor standing left, holding spear
Minted in Lugdunum (BA in exe), Emission 3 Officina 2, Early A.D. 276
References:– Cohen 108, Bastien 60, RIC 55 Bust Type C
Weight 4.08 gms
Size 22.39 mm
maridvnvm
RI_130ac_img.jpg
130 - Tacitus Antoninianus - RIC 061 (CA)18 viewsObv:– IMP CL TACITVS AVG, Radiate, draped and cuirassed bust right
Rev:– SPES PVBLICA, Spes advancing left, holding flower & lifting hem of dress
Minted in Lugdunum (CA in exe), Emission 3 Officina 3, Early A.D. 276
References:– Cohen 137, RIC 61 Bust Type C
Martin Griffiths
DiocleAnt.jpg
1301a, Diocletian, 284-305 A.D. (Antioch)94 viewsDIOCLETIAN (284 – 305 AD) AE Antoninianus, 293-95 AD, RIC V 322, Cohen 34. 20.70 mm/3.1 gm, aVF, Antioch. Obverse: IMP C C VAL DIOCLETIANVS P F AVG, Radiate bust right, draped & cuirassed; Reverse: CONCORDIA MILITVM, Jupiter presents Victory on a globe to Diocletian, I/XXI. Early Diocletian with dusty earthen green patina.


De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families

Diocletian ( 284-305 A.D.)

Ralph W. Mathisen
University of South Carolina


Summary and Introduction
The Emperor Gaius Aurelius Valerius Diocletianus (A.D. 284-305) put an end to the disastrous phase of Roman history known as the "Military Anarchy" or the "Imperial Crisis" (235-284). He established an obvious military despotism and was responsible for laying the groundwork for the second phase of the Roman Empire, which is known variously as the "Dominate," the "Tetrarchy," the "Later Roman Empire," or the "Byzantine Empire." His reforms ensured the continuity of the Roman Empire in the east for more than a thousand years.

Diocletian's Early Life and Reign
Diocletian was born ca. 236/237 on the Dalmatian coast, perhaps at Salona. He was of very humble birth, and was originally named Diocles. He would have received little education beyond an elementary literacy and he was apparently deeply imbued with religious piety He had a wife Prisca and a daughter Valeria, both of whom reputedly were Christians. During Diocletian's early life, the Roman empire was in the midst of turmoil. In the early years of the third century, emperors increasingly insecure on their thrones had granted inflationary pay raises to the soldiers. The only meaningful income the soldiers now received was in the form of gold donatives granted by newly acclaimed emperors. Beginning in 235, armies throughout the empire began to set up their generals as rival emperors. The resultant civil wars opened up the empire to invasion in both the north, by the Franks, Alamanni, and Goths, and the east, by the Sassanid Persians. Another reason for the unrest in the army was the great gap between the social background of the common soldiers and the officer corps.

Diocletian sought his fortune in the army. He showed himself to be a shrewd, able, and ambitious individual. He is first attested as "Duke of Moesia" (an area on the banks of the lower Danube River), with responsibility for border defense. He was a prudent and methodical officer, a seeker of victory rather than glory. In 282, the legions of the upper Danube proclaimed the praetorian prefect Carus as emperor. Diocletian found favor under the new emperor, and was promoted to Count of the Domestics, the commander of the cavalry arm of the imperial bodyguard. In 283 he was granted the honor of a consulate.

In 284, in the midst of a campaign against the Persians, Carus was killed, struck by a bolt of lightning which one writer noted might have been forged in a legionary armory. This left the empire in the hands of his two young sons, Numerian in the east and Carinus in the west. Soon thereafter, Numerian died under mysterious circumstances near Nicomedia, and Diocletian was acclaimed emperor in his place. At this time he changed his name from Diocles to Diocletian. In 285 Carinus was killed in a battle near Belgrade, and Diocletian gained control of the entire empire.

Diocletian's Administrative and Military Reforms
As emperor, Diocletian was faced with many problems. His most immediate concerns were to bring the mutinous and increasingly barbarized Roman armies back under control and to make the frontiers once again secure from invasion. His long-term goals were to restore effective government and economic prosperity to the empire. Diocletian concluded that stern measures were necessary if these problems were to be solved. He felt that it was the responsibility of the imperial government to take whatever steps were necessary, no matter how harsh or innovative, to bring the empire back under control.

Diocletian was able to bring the army back under control by making several changes. He subdivided the roughly fifty existing provinces into approximately one hundred. The provinces also were apportioned among twelve "dioceses," each under a "vicar," and later also among four "prefectures," each under a "praetorian prefect." As a result, the imperial bureaucracy became increasingly bloated. He institutionalized the policy of separating civil and military careers. He divided the army itself into so-called "border troops," actually an ineffective citizen militia, and "palace troops," the real field army, which often was led by the emperor in person.

Following the precedent of Aurelian (A.D.270-275), Diocletian transformed the emperorship into an out-and-out oriental monarchy. Access to him became restricted; he now was addressed not as First Citizen (Princeps) or the soldierly general (Imperator), but as Lord and Master (Dominus Noster) . Those in audience were required to prostrate themselves on the ground before him.

Diocletian also concluded that the empire was too large and complex to be ruled by only a single emperor. Therefore, in order to provide an imperial presence throughout the empire, he introduced the "Tetrarchy," or "Rule by Four." In 285, he named his lieutenant Maximianus "Caesar," and assigned him the western half of the empire. This practice began the process which would culminate with the de facto split of the empire in 395. Both Diocletian and Maximianus adopted divine attributes. Diocletian was identified with Jupiter and Maximianus with Hercules. In 286, Diocletian promoted Maximianus to the rank of Augustus, "Senior Emperor," and in 293 he appointed two new Caesars, Constantius (the father of Constantine I ), who was given Gaul and Britain in the west, and Galerius, who was assigned the Balkans in the east.

By instituting his Tetrarchy, Diocletian also hoped to solve another problem. In the Augustan Principate, there had been no constitutional method for choosing new emperors. According to Diocletian's plan, the successor of each Augustus would be the respective Caesar, who then would name a new Caesar. Initially, the Tetrarchy operated smoothly and effectively.

Once the army was under control, Diocletian could turn his attention to other problems. The borders were restored and strengthened. In the early years of his reign, Diocletian and his subordinates were able to defeat foreign enemies such as Alamanni, Sarmatians, Saracens, Franks, and Persians, and to put down rebellions in Britain and Egypt. The easter frontier was actually expanded.

.
Diocletian's Economic Reforms
Another problem was the economy, which was in an especially sorry state. The coinage had become so debased as to be virtually worthless. Diocletian's attempt to reissue good gold and silver coins failed because there simply was not enough gold and silver available to restore confidence in the currency. A "Maximum Price Edict" issued in 301, intended to curb inflation, served only to drive goods onto the black market. Diocletian finally accepted the ruin of the money economy and revised the tax system so that it was based on payments in kind . The soldiers too came to be paid in kind.

In order to assure the long term survival of the empire, Diocletian identified certain occupations which he felt would have to be performed. These were known as the "compulsory services." They included such occupations as soldiers, bakers, members of town councils, and tenant farmers. These functions became hereditary, and those engaging in them were inhibited from changing their careers. The repetitious nature of these laws, however, suggests that they were not widely obeyed. Diocletian also expanded the policy of third-century emperors of restricting the entry of senators into high-ranking governmental posts, especially military ones.

Diocletian attempted to use the state religion as a unifying element. Encouraged by the Caesar Galerius, Diocletian in 303 issued a series of four increasingly harsh decrees designed to compel Christians to take part in the imperial cult, the traditional means by which allegiance was pledged to the empire. This began the so-called "Great Persecution."

Diocletian's Resignation and Death
On 1 May 305, wearied by his twenty years in office, and determined to implement his method for the imperial succession, Diocletian abdicated. He compelled his co-regent Maximianus to do the same. Constantius and Galerius then became the new Augusti, and two new Caesars were selected, Maximinus (305-313) in the east and Severus (305- 307) in the west. Diocletian then retired to his palace at Split on the Croatian coast. In 308 he declined an offer to resume the purple, and the aged ex-emperor died at Split on 3 December 316.

Copyright (C) 1996, Ralph W. Mathisen, University of South Carolina
Published: De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families http://www.roman-emperors.org/startup.htm. Used by permission.

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.

1 commentsCleisthenes
DicletianConcordCyz.jpg
1301b, Diocletian, 20 November 284 - 1 March 305 A.D.59 viewsDiocletian. RIC V Part II Cyzicus 256 var. Not listed with pellet in exegrue
Item ref: RI141f. VF. Minted in Cyzicus (B in centre field, XXI dot in exegrue)Obverse:- IMP CC VAL DIOCLETIANVS AVG, Radiate, draped and cuirassed bust right. Reverse:- CONCORDIA MILITVM, Diocletian standing right, holding parazonium, receiving Victory from Jupiter standing left with scepter.
A post reform radiate of Diocletian. Ex Maridvnvm.

De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families

Diocletian ( 284-305 A.D.)

Ralph W. Mathisen
University of South Carolina


Summary and Introduction
The Emperor Gaius Aurelius Valerius Diocletianus (A.D. 284-305) put an end to the disastrous phase of Roman history known as the "Military Anarchy" or the "Imperial Crisis" (235-284). He established an obvious military despotism and was responsible for laying the groundwork for the second phase of the Roman Empire, which is known variously as the "Dominate," the "Tetrarchy," the "Later Roman Empire," or the "Byzantine Empire." His reforms ensured the continuity of the Roman Empire in the east for more than a thousand years.

Diocletian's Early Life and Reign
Diocletian was born ca. 236/237 on the Dalmatian coast, perhaps at Salona. He was of very humble birth, and was originally named Diocles. He would have received little education beyond an elementary literacy and he was apparently deeply imbued with religious piety He had a wife Prisca and a daughter Valeria, both of whom reputedly were Christians. During Diocletian's early life, the Roman empire was in the midst of turmoil. In the early years of the third century, emperors increasingly insecure on their thrones had granted inflationary pay raises to the soldiers. The only meaningful income the soldiers now received was in the form of gold donatives granted by newly acclaimed emperors. Beginning in 235, armies throughout the empire began to set up their generals as rival emperors. The resultant civil wars opened up the empire to invasion in both the north, by the Franks, Alamanni, and Goths, and the east, by the Sassanid Persians. Another reason for the unrest in the army was the great gap between the social background of the common soldiers and the officer corps.

Diocletian sought his fortune in the army. He showed himself to be a shrewd, able, and ambitious individual. He is first attested as "Duke of Moesia" (an area on the banks of the lower Danube River), with responsibility for border defense. He was a prudent and methodical officer, a seeker of victory rather than glory. In 282, the legions of the upper Danube proclaimed the praetorian prefect Carus as emperor. Diocletian found favor under the new emperor, and was promoted to Count of the Domestics, the commander of the cavalry arm of the imperial bodyguard. In 283 he was granted the honor of a consulate.

In 284, in the midst of a campaign against the Persians, Carus was killed, struck by a bolt of lightning which one writer noted might have been forged in a legionary armory. This left the empire in the hands of his two young sons, Numerian in the east and Carinus in the west. Soon thereafter, Numerian died under mysterious circumstances near Nicomedia, and Diocletian was acclaimed emperor in his place. At this time he changed his name from Diocles to Diocletian. In 285 Carinus was killed in a battle near Belgrade, and Diocletian gained control of the entire empire.

Diocletian's Administrative and Military Reforms
As emperor, Diocletian was faced with many problems. His most immediate concerns were to bring the mutinous and increasingly barbarized Roman armies back under control and to make the frontiers once again secure from invasion. His long-term goals were to restore effective government and economic prosperity to the empire. Diocletian concluded that stern measures were necessary if these problems were to be solved. He felt that it was the responsibility of the imperial government to take whatever steps were necessary, no matter how harsh or innovative, to bring the empire back under control.

Diocletian was able to bring the army back under control by making several changes. He subdivided the roughly fifty existing provinces into approximately one hundred. The provinces also were apportioned among twelve "dioceses," each under a "vicar," and later also among four "prefectures," each under a "praetorian prefect." As a result, the imperial bureaucracy became increasingly bloated. He institutionalized the policy of separating civil and military careers. He divided the army itself into so-called "border troops," actually an ineffective citizen militia, and "palace troops," the real field army, which often was led by the emperor in person.

Following the precedent of Aurelian (A.D.270-275), Diocletian transformed the emperorship into an out-and-out oriental monarchy. Access to him became restricted; he now was addressed not as First Citizen (Princeps) or the soldierly general (Imperator), but as Lord and Master (Dominus Noster) . Those in audience were required to prostrate themselves on the ground before him.

Diocletian also concluded that the empire was too large and complex to be ruled by only a single emperor. Therefore, in order to provide an imperial presence throughout the empire, he introduced the "Tetrarchy," or "Rule by Four." In 285, he named his lieutenant Maximianus "Caesar," and assigned him the western half of the empire. This practice began the process which would culminate with the de facto split of the empire in 395. Both Diocletian and Maximianus adopted divine attributes. Diocletian was identified with Jupiter and Maximianus with Hercules. In 286, Diocletian promoted Maximianus to the rank of Augustus, "Senior Emperor," and in 293 he appointed two new Caesars, Constantius (the father of Constantine I ), who was given Gaul and Britain in the west, and Galerius, who was assigned the Balkans in the east.

By instituting his Tetrarchy, Diocletian also hoped to solve another problem. In the Augustan Principate, there had been no constitutional method for choosing new emperors. According to Diocletian's plan, the successor of each Augustus would be the respective Caesar, who then would name a new Caesar. Initially, the Tetrarchy operated smoothly and effectively.

Once the army was under control, Diocletian could turn his attention to other problems. The borders were restored and strengthened. In the early years of his reign, Diocletian and his subordinates were able to defeat foreign enemies such as Alamanni, Sarmatians, Saracens, Franks, and Persians, and to put down rebellions in Britain and Egypt. The easter frontier was actually expanded.

.
Diocletian's Economic Reforms
Another problem was the economy, which was in an especially sorry state. The coinage had become so debased as to be virtually worthless. Diocletian's attempt to reissue good gold and silver coins failed because there simply was not enough gold and silver available to restore confidence in the currency. A "Maximum Price Edict" issued in 301, intended to curb inflation, served only to drive goods onto the black market. Diocletian finally accepted the ruin of the money economy and revised the tax system so that it was based on payments in kind . The soldiers too came to be paid in kind.

In order to assure the long term survival of the empire, Diocletian identified certain occupations which he felt would have to be performed. These were known as the "compulsory services." They included such occupations as soldiers, bakers, members of town councils, and tenant farmers. These functions became hereditary, and those engaging in them were inhibited from changing their careers. The repetitious nature of these laws, however, suggests that they were not widely obeyed. Diocletian also expanded the policy of third-century emperors of restricting the entry of senators into high-ranking governmental posts, especially military ones.

Diocletian attempted to use the state religion as a unifying element. Encouraged by the Caesar Galerius, Diocletian in 303 issued a series of four increasingly harsh decrees designed to compel Christians to take part in the imperial cult, the traditional means by which allegiance was pledged to the empire. This began the so-called "Great Persecution."

Diocletian's Resignation and Death
On 1 May 305, wearied by his twenty years in office, and determined to implement his method for the imperial succession, Diocletian abdicated. He compelled his co-regent Maximianus to do the same. Constantius and Galerius then became the new Augusti, and two new Caesars were selected, Maximinus (305-313) in the east and Severus (305- 307) in the west. Diocletian then retired to his palace at Split on the Croatian coast. In 308 he declined an offer to resume the purple, and the aged ex-emperor died at Split on 3 December 316.

Copyright (C) 1996, Ralph W. Mathisen, University of South Carolina
Published: De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families http://www.roman-emperors.org/startup.htm. Used by permission.

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.


Cleisthenes
GaleriusAugCyz.jpg
1303a, Galerius, 1 March 305 - 5 May 311 A.D.35 viewsGalerius, RIC VI 59, Cyzicus S, VF, Cyzicus S, 6.4 g, 25.86 mm; 309-310 AD; Obverse: GAL MAXIMIANVS P F AVG, laureate bust right; Reverse: GENIO A-VGVS[TI], Genius stg. left, naked but for chlamys over left shoulder, holding patera and cornucopiae. A nice example with sharp detail and nice brown hoard patina. Ex Ancient Imports.


De Imperatoribus Romanis,
An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Emperors

Galerius (305-311 A.D.)

Michael DiMaio, Jr.
Salve Regina University


Caius Galerius Valerius Maximianus, more commonly known as Galerius, was from Illyricum; his father, whose name is unknown, was of peasant stock, while his mother, Romula, was from beyond the Danube. Galerius was born in Dacia Ripensis near Sardica. Although the date of his birth is unknown, he was probably born ca. 250 since he served under Aurelian. As a youth Galerius was a shepherd and acquired the nickname Armentarius. Although he seems to have started his military career under Aurelian and Probus, nothing is known about it before his accession as Caesar on 1 March 293. He served as Diocletian's Caesar in the East. Abandoning his first wife, he married Diocletian's daugher, Valeria.

As Caesar he campaigned in Egypt in 294; he seems to have taken to the field against Narses of Persia, and was defeated near Ctesiphon in 295. In 298, after he made inroads into Armenia, he obtained a treaty from the Persians favorable to the Romans. Between 299-305 he overcame the Sarmatians and the Carpi along the Danube. The Great Persecution of the Orthodox Church, which was started in 303 by the Emperor Diocletian, was probably instigated by Galerius. Because of the almost fatal illness that he contracted toward the end of 304, Diocletian, at Nicomedeia, and Maximianus Herculius, at Mediolanum, divested themselves of the purple on 1 May 305. Constantius and Galerius were appointed as Augusti, with Maximinus Daia and Severus as the new Caesars. Constantius and Severus reigned in the West, whereas Galerius' and Daia's realm was the East. Although Constantius was nominally senior Augustus, the real power was in the hands of Galerius because both Caesars were his creatures.

The balance of power shifted at the end of July 306 when Constantius, with his son Constantine at his side, passed away at York in Britain where he was preparing to face incursions by the Picts; his army proclaimed Constantine his successor immediately. As soon as he received the news of the death of Constantius I and the acclamation of Constantine to the purple, Galerius raised Severus to the rank of Augustus to replace his dead colleague in August 306. Making the best of a bad situation, Galerius accepted Constantine as the new Caesar in the West. The situation became more complicated when Maxentius, with his father Maximianus Herculius acquiesing, declared himself princes on 28 October 306. When Galerius learned about the acclamation of the usurper, he dispatched the Emperor Severus to put down the rebellion. Severus took a large field army which had formerly been that of Maximianus and proceeded toward Rome and began to besiege the city, Maxentius, however, and Maximianus, by means of a ruse, convinced Severus to surrender. Later, in 307, Severus was put to death under clouded circumstances. While Severus was fighting in the west, Galerius, during late 306 or early 307, was campaigning against the Sarmatians.

In the early summer of 307 Galerius invaded Italy to avenge Severus's death; he advanced to the south and encamped at Interamna near the Tiber. His attempt to besiege the city was abortive because his army was too small to encompass the city's fortifications. Not trusting his own troops, Galerius withdrew. During its retreat, his army ravaged the Italian countryside as it was returning to its original base. When Maximianus Herculius' attempts to regain the throne between 308 and 310 by pushing his son off his throne or by winning over Constantine to his cause failed, he tried to win Diocletian and Galerius over to his side at Carnuntum in October and November 308; the outcome of the Conference at Carnuntum was that Licinius was appointed Augustus in Severus's place, that Daia and Constantine were denoted filii Augustorum, and that Herculius was completely cut out of the picture. Later, in 310, Herculius died, having been implicated in a plot against his son-in-law. After the Conference at Carnuntum, Galerius returned to Sardica where he died in the opening days of May 311.

By Michael DiMaio, Jr., Salve Regina University; Published: De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families http://www.roman-emperors.org/startup.htm. Used by permission.

Galerius was Caesar and tetrarch under Maximianus. Although a talented general and administrator, Galerius is better known for his key role in the "Great Persecution" of Christians. He stopped the persecution under condition the Christians pray for his return to health from a serious illness. Galerius died horribly shortly after. Joseph Sermarini, FORVM.

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.



Cleisthenes
Constantius1_silvered_follis.jpg
1304a, Constantius I, May 305 - 25 July 306 A.D.48 viewsSilvered follis, RIC 20a, S 3671, VM 25, gVF, Heraclea mint, 10.144g, 27.7mm, 180o, 297 - 298 A.D. Obverse: FL VAL CONSTANTIVS NOB CAES, laureate head right; Reverse GENIO POPVLI ROMANI, Genius standing left, modius on head, naked except for chlamys over shoulder, cornucopia in left, pouring liquor from patera, HTD in exergue; some silvering, nice portrait, well centered.



De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families

Constantius I Chlorus (305-306 A.D.)

Michael DiMaio, Jr.
Salve Regina University

Constantius' Early Life and Marriage

Born March 31st, Emperor Flavius Valerius Constantius may have come into the world ca. 250. His family was from Illyricum. In the army he served as a protector, tribunus, and a praeses Dalmatiarum. During the 270s or the 280s, he became the father of Constantine by Helena, his first spouse. By 288 he was the Praetorian Prefect of the western emperor Maximianus Herculius.

Constantius' Reign as Caesar

On 1 March 293 Diocletian appointed Galerius as his Caesar (junior emperor) in the east and Constantius as the Caesar of Maximianus Herculius. Caesar in the west. Both Caesars had the right of succession. In order to strengthen the dynastic relationship between himself and Herculius., Constantius put aside his wife Helena and married Theodora, the daughter, or perhaps stepdaughter, of Maximianus Herculius.. The union was fruitful and of it there were six issue: Flavius Dalmatius, Julius Constantius, Hannibalianus, Constantia, Anastasia, and Eutropia. To strengthen his bond with Galerius and Diocletian in the east, Constantius allowed Galerius to keep his son Constantine as a hostage for his good behavior.

In the remainder of the time that he was a Caesar, Constantius spent much of his time engaged in military actions in the west. In the summer of 293 Constantius expelled the troops of the usurper Carausius from northern Gaul; after Constantius' attack on Bononia (Boulogne), Carausius was murdered. At the same time he dealt with the unrest of the Germans. In 296 he invaded Britain and put down the revolt of the usurper Allectus. Between 300 and 305 A.D. the Caesar campaigned successfully several times with various German tribes. It is worth noting in passing, that while his colleagues rigidly enforced the "Great Persecution in 303," Constantius limited his action to knocking down a few churches.

Constantius as Augustus and His Untimely Death

On 1 May 305 Diocletian, at Nicomedia, and Maximianus Herculius, at Mediolanum (Milan), divested themselves of the purple, probably because of the almost fatal illness that Diocletian contracted toward the end of 304. Diocletian forced Maximianus to abdicate. They appointed as their successors Constantius and Galerius, with Severus and Maximinus Daia as the new Caesars. The retired emperors then returned to private life. Constantius, as had his predecessor, ruled in the west, while Galerius and Daia ruled in the east. Almost as soon as he was appointed Augustus, he crossed to Britain to face incursions by the Picts where he died at York on 25 July 306 with his son (Constantine I, known to history as “The Great”) at his side.

Copyright (C) 1996, Michael DiMaio, Jr.
Published: De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families http://www.roman-emperors.org/startup.htm. Used by permission.

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.
Cleisthenes
MaxentiusRIC163.jpg
1307a, Maxentius, February 307 - 28 October 312 A.D.60 viewsBronze follis, RIC 163, aEF, Rome mint, 5.712g, 25.6mm, 0o, summer 307 A.D.; obverse MAXENTIVS P F AVG, laureate head right; reverse CONSERVATO-RES VRB SVAE, Roma holding globe and scepter, seated in hexastyle temple, RT in ex; rare. Ex FORVM; Ex Maridvnvm


De Imperatoribus Romanis : An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families

Maxentius (306-312 A.D.)

Michael DiMaio, Jr.
Salve Regina University

Marcus Aurelius Valerius Maxentius, more commonly known as Maxentius, was the child of the Emperor Maximianus Herculius and the Syrian, Eutropia; he was born ca. 278 A.D. After Galerius' appointment to the rank of Caesar on 1 March 293, Maxentius married Galerius' daughter Valeria Maximilla, who bore him a son named Romulus and another son whose name is unknown. Due to his haughty nature and bad disposition, Maxentius could seldom agree with his father or his father-in-law; Galerius' and Maximianus Herculius' aversion to Maxentius prevented the young man from becoming a Caesar in 305. Little else is known of Maxentius' private life prior to his accession and, although there is some evidence that it was spent in idleness, he did become a Senator.

On 28 October 306 Maxentius was acclaimed emperor, although he was politically astute enough not to use the title Augustus; like the Emperor Augustus, he called himself princeps. It was not until the summer of 307 that he started using the title Augustus and started offending other claimants to the imperial throne. He was enthroned by the plebs and the Praetorians. At the time of his acclamation Maxentius was at a public villa on the Via Labicana. He strengthened his position with promises of riches for those who helped him obtain his objective. He forced his father Maximianus Herculius to affirm his son's acclamation in order to give his regime a facade of legitimacy. His realm included Italy, Africa, Sardinia, and Corsica. As soon as Galerius learned about the acclamation of Herculius' son, he dispatched the Emperor Severus to quell the rebellion. With the help of his father and Severus' own troops, Maxentius' took his enemy prisoner.

When Severus died, Galerius was determined to avenge his death. In the early summer of 307 the Augustus invaded Italy; he advanced to the south and encamped at Interamna near the Tiber. His attempt to besiege the city was abortive because his army was not large enough to encompass the city's fortifications. Negotiations between Maxentius and Galerius broke down when the emperor discovered that the usurper was trying to win over his troops. Galerius' troops were open to Maxentius' promises because they were fighting a civil war between members of the same family; some of the soldiers went over to the enemy. Not trusting his own troops, Galerius withdrew. During its retreat, Galerius' army ravaged the Italian countryside as it was returning to its original base. If it was not enough that Maxentius had to deal with the havoc created by the ineffectual invasions of Severus and Galerius, he also had to deal with his father's attempts to regain the throne between 308 and 310. When Maximianus Herculius was unable to regain power by pushing his son off his throne, he attempted to win over Constantine to his cause. When this plan failed, he tried to win Diocletian over to his side at Carnuntum in October and November 308. Frustrated at every turn, Herculius returned to his son-in-law Constantine's side in Gaul where he died in 310, having been implicated in a plot against his son-in-law. Maxentius' control of the situation was weakened by the revolt of L. Domitius Alexander in 308. Although the revolt only lasted until the end of 309, it drastically cut the size of the grain supply availble for Rome. Maxentius' rule collapsed when he died on 27 October 312 in an engagement he had with the Emperor Constantine at the Milvian Bridge after the latter had invaded his realm.

Copyright (C) 1996, Michael DiMaio, Jr.
Published: De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families http://www.roman-emperors.org/startup.htm. Used by permission.

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.
1 commentsCleisthenes
Lcnius1.jpg
1308b, Licinius I, 308 - 324 A.D. (Siscia)59 viewsLicinius I, 11 November 308 - 18 September 324 A.D. Bronze follis, RIC 4, F, Siscia, 3.257g, 21.6mm, 0o, 313 - 315 A.D. Obverse: IMP LIC LICINIVS P F AVG, laureate head right; Reverse IOVI CONSERVATORI AVGG NN, Jupiter standing left holding Victory on globe and scepter, eagle with wreath in beak left, E right, SIS in exergue.



De Imperatoribus Romanis : An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families

Licinius (308-324 A.D.)

Michael DiMaio, Jr.
Salve Regina University

Licinius' Heritage

Valerius Licinianus Licinius, more commonly known as Licinius, may have been born ca. 265. Of peasant origin, his family was from Dacia. A close friend and comrade of arms of the Emperor Galerius, he accompanied him on his Persian expedition in 297. When campaigns by Severus and Galerius in late 306 or early 307 and in the summer of 307, respectively, failed to dislodge Maxentius who, with the luke warm support of his father Maximianus Herculius, was acclaimed princeps on 28 October 306, he was sent by the eastern emperor to Maxentius as an ambassador; the diplomatic mission, however, failed because the usurper refused to submit to the authority of his father-in-law Galerius. At the Conference of Carnuntum which was held in October or November of 308, Licinius was made an Augustus on 11 November 308; his realm included Thrace, Illyricum, and Pannonia.

Licinius' Early Reign

Although Licinius was initially appointed by Galerius to replace Severus to end the revolt of Maxentius , Licinius (perhaps wisely) made no effort to move against the usurper. In fact, his first attested victory was against the Sarmatians probably in the late spring, but no later than the end of June in 310. When the Emperor Galerius died in 311, Licinius met Maximinus Daia at the Bosporus during the early summer of that year; they concluded a treaty and divided Galerius' realm between them. It was little more than a year later that the Emperor Constantine defeated Maxentius at the Battle of the Milvian Bridge on 28 October 312. After the defeat of the usurper, Constantine and Licinius met at Mediolanum (Milan) where Licinius married the former's sister Constantia; one child was born of this union: Valerius Licinianus Licinius. Licinius had another son, born of a slave woman, whose name is unknown. It appears that both emperors promulgated the so-called Edict of Milan, in which Constantine and Licinius granted Christians the freedom to practice their faith without any interference from the state.

As soon as he seems to have learned about the marital alliance between Licinius and Constantine and the death of Maxentius, who had been his ally, Daia traversed Asia Minor and, in April 313, he crossed the Bosporus and went to Byzantium, which he took from Licinius after an eleven day siege. On 30 April 313 the armies of both emperors clashed on the Campus Ergenus; in the ensuing battle Daia's forces were routed. A last ditch stand by Daia at the Cilician Gates failed; the eastern emperor subsequently died in the area of Tarsus probably in July or August 313. As soon as he arrived in Nicomedeia, Licinius promulgated the Edict of Milan. As soon as he had matters in Nicomedeia straightened out, Licinius campaigned against the Persians in the remaining part of 313 and the opening months of 314.

The First Civil War Between Licinius and Constantine

Once Licinius had defeated Maximinus Daia, the sole rulers of the Roman world were he and Constantine. It is obvious that the marriage of Licinius to Constantia was simply a union of convenience. In any case, there is evidence in the sources that both emperors were looking for an excuse to attack the other. The affair involving Bassianus (the husband of Constantius I's daughter Anastasia ), mentioned in the text of Anonymus Valesianus (5.14ff), may have sparked the falling out between the two emperors. In any case, Constantine' s forces joined battle with those of Licinius at Cibalae in Pannonia on 8 October 314. When the battle was over, Constantine prevailed; his victory, however, was Pyrrhic. Both emperors had been involved in exhausting military campaigns in the previous year and the months leading up to Cibalae and each of their realms had expanded so fast that their manpower reserves must have been stretched to the limit. Both men retreated to their own territory to lick their wounds. It may well be that the two emperors made an agreement, which has left no direct trace in the historical record, which would effectively restore the status quo.

Both emperors were variously engaged in different activities between 315 and 316. In addition to campaigning against the Germans while residing in Augusta Treverorum (Trier) in 315, Constantine dealt with aspects of the Donatist controversy; he also traveled to Rome where he celebrated his Decennalia. Licinius, possibly residing at Sirmium, was probably waging war against the Goths. Although not much else is known about Licinius' activities during this period, it is probable that he spent much of his time preparing for his impending war against Constantine; the latter,who spent the spring and summer of 316 in Augusta Treverorum, was probably doing much the same thing. In any case, by December 316, the western emperor was in Sardica with his army. Sometime between 1 December and 28 February 317, both emperors' armies joined battle on the Campus Ardiensis; as was the case in the previous engagement, Constantine' s forces were victorious. On 1 March 317, both sides agreed to a cessation of hostilities; possibly because of the intervention of his wife Constantia, Licinius was able to keep his throne, although he had to agree to the execution of his colleague Valens, who the eastern emperor had appointed as his colleague before the battle, as well as to cede some of his territory to his brother-in-law.

Licinius and the Christians

Although the historical record is not completely clear, Licinius seems to have campaigned against the Sarmatians in 318. He also appears to have been in Byzantium in the summer of 318 and later in June 323. Beyond these few facts, not much else is known about his residences until mid summer of 324. Although he and Constantine had issued the Edict of Milan in early 313, Licinius turned on the Christians in his realm seemingly in 320. The first law that Licinius issued prevented bishops from communicating with each other and from holding synods to discuss matters of interest to them. The second law prohibited men and women from attending services together and young girls from receiving instruction from their bishop or schools. When this law was issued, he also gave orders that Christians could hold services only outside of city walls. Additionally, he deprived officers in the army of their commissions if they did not sacrifice to the gods. Licinius may have been trying to incite Constantine to attack him. In any case, the growing tension between the two rulers is reflected in the consular Fasti of the period.

The Second Civil War Between Licinius and Constantine and Licinius' Death

War actually broke out in 321 when Constantine pursued some Sarmatians, who had been ravaging some territory in his realm, across the Danube. When he checked a similar invasion of the Goths, who were devastating Thrace, Licinius complained that Constantine had broken the treaty between them. Having assembled a fleet and army at Thessalonica, Constantine advanced toward Adrianople. Licinius engaged the forces of his brother-in-law near the banks of the Hebrus River on 3 July 324 where he was routed; with as many men as he could gather, he headed for his fleet which was in the Hellespont. Those of his soldiers who were not killed or put to flight, surrendered to the enemy. Licinius fled to Byzantium, where he was besieged by Constantine. Licinius' fleet, under the command of the admiral Abantus, was overcome by bad weather and by Constantine' s fleet which was under the command of his son Crispus. Hard pressed in Byzantium, Licinius abandoned the city to his rival and fled to Chalcedon in Bithynia. Leaving Martinianus, his former magister officiorum and now his co-ruler, to impede Constantine' s progress, Licinius regrouped his forces and engaged his enemy at Chrysopolis where he was again routed on 18 September 324. He fled to Nicomedeia which Constantine began to besiege. On the next day Licinius abdicated and was sent to Thessalonica, where he was kept under house arrest. Both Licinius and his associate were put to death by Constantine. Martinianus may have been put to death before the end of 324, whereas Licinius was not put to death until the spring of 325. Rumors circulated that Licinius had been put to death because he attempted another rebellion against Constantine.

Copyright (C) 1996, Michael DiMaio, Jr.
Published: De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families http://www.roman-emperors.org/startup.htm. Used by permission.

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.

Cleisthenes
Licin1AEFolJupiAlex.jpg
1308c, Licinius I, 308-324 A.D. (Alexandria)66 viewsLicinius I, 308-324 A.D. AE Follis, 3.60g, VF, 315 A.D., Alexandria. Obverse: IMP C VAL LICIN LICINIVS P F AVG - Laureate head right; Reverse: IOVI CONS-ERVATORI AVGG - Jupiter standing left, holding Victory on a globe and scepter; exergue: ALE / (wreath) over "B" over "N." Ref: RIC VII, 10 (B = r2) Rare, page 705 - Hunterian Museum, Glasgow, Scotland.


De Imperatoribus Romanis : An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families

Licinius (308-324 A.D.)

Michael DiMaio, Jr.
Salve Regina University

Licinius' Heritage

Valerius Licinianus Licinius, more commonly known as Licinius, may have been born ca. 265. Of peasant origin, his family was from Dacia. A close friend and comrade of arms of the Emperor Galerius, he accompanied him on his Persian expedition in 297. When campaigns by Severus and Galerius in late 306 or early 307 and in the summer of 307, respectively, failed to dislodge Maxentius who, with the luke warm support of his father Maximianus Herculius, was acclaimed princeps on 28 October 306, he was sent by the eastern emperor to Maxentius as an ambassador; the diplomatic mission, however, failed because the usurper refused to submit to the authority of his father-in-law Galerius. At the Conference of Carnuntum which was held in October or November of 308, Licinius was made an Augustus on 11 November 308; his realm included Thrace, Illyricum, and Pannonia.

Licinius' Early Reign

Although Licinius was initially appointed by Galerius to replace Severus to end the revolt of Maxentius , Licinius (perhaps wisely) made no effort to move against the usurper. In fact, his first attested victory was against the Sarmatians probably in the late spring, but no later than the end of June in 310. When the Emperor Galerius died in 311, Licinius met Maximinus Daia at the Bosporus during the early summer of that year; they concluded a treaty and divided Galerius' realm between them. It was little more than a year later that the Emperor Constantine defeated Maxentius at the Battle of the Milvian Bridge on 28 October 312. After the defeat of the usurper, Constantine and Licinius met at Mediolanum (Milan) where Licinius married the former's sister Constantia; one child was born of this union: Valerius Licinianus Licinius. Licinius had another son, born of a slave woman, whose name is unknown. It appears that both emperors promulgated the so-called Edict of Milan, in which Constantine and Licinius granted Christians the freedom to practice their faith without any interference from the state.

As soon as he seems to have learned about the marital alliance between Licinius and Constantine and the death of Maxentius, who had been his ally, Daia traversed Asia Minor and, in April 313, he crossed the Bosporus and went to Byzantium, which he took from Licinius after an eleven day siege. On 30 April 313 the armies of both emperors clashed on the Campus Ergenus; in the ensuing battle Daia's forces were routed. A last ditch stand by Daia at the Cilician Gates failed; the eastern emperor subsequently died in the area of Tarsus probably in July or August 313. As soon as he arrived in Nicomedeia, Licinius promulgated the Edict of Milan. As soon as he had matters in Nicomedeia straightened out, Licinius campaigned against the Persians in the remaining part of 313 and the opening months of 314.

The First Civil War Between Licinius and Constantine

Once Licinius had defeated Maximinus Daia, the sole rulers of the Roman world were he and Constantine. It is obvious that the marriage of Licinius to Constantia was simply a union of convenience. In any case, there is evidence in the sources that both emperors were looking for an excuse to attack the other. The affair involving Bassianus (the husband of Constantius I's daughter Anastasia ), mentioned in the text of Anonymus Valesianus (5.14ff), may have sparked the falling out between the two emperors. In any case, Constantine' s forces joined battle with those of Licinius at Cibalae in Pannonia on 8 October 314. When the battle was over, Constantine prevailed; his victory, however, was Pyrrhic. Both emperors had been involved in exhausting military campaigns in the previous year and the months leading up to Cibalae and each of their realms had expanded so fast that their manpower reserves must have been stretched to the limit. Both men retreated to their own territory to lick their wounds. It may well be that the two emperors made an agreement, which has left no direct trace in the historical record, which would effectively restore the status quo.

Both emperors were variously engaged in different activities between 315 and 316. In addition to campaigning against the Germans while residing in Augusta Treverorum (Trier) in 315, Constantine dealt with aspects of the Donatist controversy; he also traveled to Rome where he celebrated his Decennalia. Licinius, possibly residing at Sirmium, was probably waging war against the Goths. Although not much else is known about Licinius' activities during this period, it is probable that he spent much of his time preparing for his impending war against Constantine; the latter,who spent the spring and summer of 316 in Augusta Treverorum, was probably doing much the same thing. In any case, by December 316, the western emperor was in Sardica with his army. Sometime between 1 December and 28 February 317, both emperors' armies joined battle on the Campus Ardiensis; as was the case in the previous engagement, Constantine' s forces were victorious. On 1 March 317, both sides agreed to a cessation of hostilities; possibly because of the intervention of his wife Constantia, Licinius was able to keep his throne, although he had to agree to the execution of his colleague Valens, who the eastern emperor had appointed as his colleague before the battle, as well as to cede some of his territory to his brother-in-law.

Licinius and the Christians

Although the historical record is not completely clear, Licinius seems to have campaigned against the Sarmatians in 318. He also appears to have been in Byzantium in the summer of 318 and later in June 323. Beyond these few facts, not much else is known about his residences until mid summer of 324. Although he and Constantine had issued the Edict of Milan in early 313, Licinius turned on the Christians in his realm seemingly in 320. The first law that Licinius issued prevented bishops from communicating with each other and from holding synods to discuss matters of interest to them. The second law prohibited men and women from attending services together and young girls from receiving instruction from their bishop or schools. When this law was issued, he also gave orders that Christians could hold services only outside of city walls. Additionally, he deprived officers in the army of their commissions if they did not sacrifice to the gods. Licinius may have been trying to incite Constantine to attack him. In any case, the growing tension between the two rulers is reflected in the consular Fasti of the period.

The Second Civil War Between Licinius and Constantine and Licinius' Death

War actually broke out in 321 when Constantine pursued some Sarmatians, who had been ravaging some territory in his realm, across the Danube. When he checked a similar invasion of the Goths, who were devastating Thrace, Licinius complained that Constantine had broken the treaty between them. Having assembled a fleet and army at Thessalonica, Constantine advanced toward Adrianople. Licinius engaged the forces of his brother-in-law near the banks of the Hebrus River on 3 July 324 where he was routed; with as many men as he could gather, he headed for his fleet which was in the Hellespont. Those of his soldiers who were not killed or put to flight, surrendered to the enemy. Licinius fled to Byzantium, where he was besieged by Constantine. Licinius' fleet, under the command of the admiral Abantus, was overcome by bad weather and by Constantine' s fleet which was under the command of his son Crispus. Hard pressed in Byzantium, Licinius abandoned the city to his rival and fled to Chalcedon in Bithynia. Leaving Martinianus, his former magister officiorum and now his co-ruler, to impede Constantine' s progress, Licinius regrouped his forces and engaged his enemy at Chrysopolis where he was again routed on 18 September 324. He fled to Nicomedeia which Constantine began to besiege. On the next day Licinius abdicated and was sent to Thessalonica, where he was kept under house arrest. Both Licinius and his associate were put to death by Constantine. Martinianus may have been put to death before the end of 324, whereas Licinius was not put to death until the spring of 325. Rumors circulated that Licinius had been put to death because he attempted another rebellion against Constantine.

Copyright (C) 1996, Michael DiMaio, Jr.
Published: De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families http://www.roman-emperors.org/startup.htm. Used by permission.

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.

Cleisthenes
RI_132vs_img.jpg
132 - Probus - RIC 031 - Bust Type F17 viewsObv:– IMP C M AVR PROBVS AVG, Radiate cuirassed bust right
Rev:– LAETITIA AVGVSTI, Laetitia standing left holding wreath and staff
Minted in Lugdunum (IIII) Emission 3 Officina 4. Minted Start A.D. 277
Reference:– Cohen 329. Bastien 182 (29). RIC 31 Bust Type F

3.20 gms

Nearly fully silvered.

Clashed die resulting in obverse profile being seen on the reverse.
maridvnvm
RI_132nu_img.jpg
132 - Probus - RIC 038 var - Bust Type F (Lugdunum) (None)12 viewsObv:– IMP C PROBVS P F AVG, Radiate cuirassed bust right
Rev:– MARS VICTOR, Mars walking right, holding spear and trophy.
Minted in Lugdunum (No marks)
Reference:– Cohen 334. RIC 38 var Bust type F (Not listed in RIC without marks). cf Bastien 262 (1 example, Missong collection).

4.33 gms

Bastien only notes one example of this coin type without marks and attributes it to emission 6 and hence a RIC 84 var. This example seems to have an early bust type and to my eyes belongs more to the style of emission 4, and hence the RIC 38 var.
maridvnvm
RI_132al_img.jpg
132 - Probus - RIC 052 - Bust Type F (Lugdunum) (I)15 viewsObv:– IMP C M AVR PROBVS AVG, Radiate cuirassed bust right
Rev:– TEMPORVM FELICITAS, Felicitas standing right, holding caduceus and cornucopiae
Minted in Lugdunum (I in exe) Emission 3, Officina 1. Early A.D. 277
Reference:– Cohen 729, Bastien 176. RIC 52 Bust type F

3.06 gms
23.01mm
maridvnvm
RI_132py_img.jpg
132 - Probus - RIC 052 - Bust Type F (Lugdunum) (I)15 viewsObv:– IMP C M AVR PROBVS AVG, Radiate cuirassed bust right
Rev:– TEMPORVM FELICITAS, Felicitas standing right, holding caduceus and cornucopiae
Minted in Lugdunum (I in exe) Emission 3, Officina 1. Early A.D. 277
Reference:– Cohen 729, Bastien 176. RIC 52 Bust type F

3.34 gms
maridvnvm
RI_132xd_img.jpg
132 - Probus - RIC 059 - Bust Type G33 viewsObv:– IMP C M AVR PROBVS AVG, Radiate, helmeted, cuirassed bust left, holding spear and shield, horseman on shield
Rev:– ABVNDANTIA AVG, Abundantia standing right, emptying cornucopiae
Minted in Lugdunum (IIII) Emission 5 Officina 4. End A.D. 277 to Early A.D. 278
Reference:– RIC 59 Bust type G. Cohen 5. Bastien 248

3.93 gms
1 commentsmaridvnvm
RI 132ma img~0.jpg
132 - Probus - RIC 064 - Bust Type G (Lugdunum) (IIII)217 viewsObv:– VIRTVS PRO-BI AVG, Radiate, helmeted, cuirassed bust left, holding spear and shield, decorated with emperor riding past row of soldiers with shields
Rev:– ADVENTVS PROBI AVG, Emperor riding left, right hand raised, left holding sceptre; at foot, captive
Minted in Lugdunum (IIII) Emission 5 Officina 4. End A.D. 277 to Early A.D. 278
References:– Cohen 69. Bastien 256 (2 examples). RIC 64 Bust Type G (S)
Appears to be an obverse die match to the plate example in Bastien.
12 commentsmaridvnvm
RI_132ma_img~0.jpg
132 - Probus - RIC 064 - Bust Type G (Lugdunum) (IIII) 35 viewsObv:– VIRTVS PRO-BI AVG, Radiate, helmeted, cuirassed bust left, holding spear and shield, decorated with emperor riding past row of soldiers with shields
Rev:– ADVENTVS PROBI AVG, Emperor riding left, right hand raised, left holding sceptre; at foot, captive
Minted in Lugdunum (IIII) Emission 5 Officina 4. End A.D. 277 to Early A.D. 278
References:– Cohen 69. Bastien 256 (2 examples). RIC 64 Bust Type G (S)
Appears to be an obverse die match to the plate example in Bastien
1 commentsmaridvnvm
RI_132wv_img.jpg
132 - Probus - RIC 064 - Bust Type G var39 viewsObv:– VIRTVS PROBI AVG, Radiate, helmeted, cuirassed bust left, holding spear and shield
Rev:– ADVENTVS PROBI AVG, Emperor, riding left, right hand raised, left holding sceptre; at foot, captive
Mint – Lugdunum (//III) Emission 5, Officina 3. End A. D. 277 to Early A.D. 278
Reference:– RIC 64 Bust Type G var (officina), Cohen 69, Bastien 226 (1 ex. same dies)

3.35 gms. 180 degrees. 22.19 mm.
1 commentsmaridvnvm
RI_132va_img~0.jpg
132 - Probus - RIC 08321 viewsObv:- IMP C M AVR PROBVS AVG, Radiate, cuirassed bust right holding spear
Rev:- MARS VICTOR, Mars advancing right with spear and trophy
Minted in Lugdunum (II) Emission 5 Officina 2. End A.D. 277 to Early A.D. 278
References:- RIC 83. Bastien 218 (5 examples cited)

3.91 gms. 180 degrees.
1 commentsmaridvnvm
RI_132ij_img.jpg
132 - Probus - RIC 083 - Bust Type G (Lugdunum) (II)19 viewsObv:– IMP C M AVR PROBVS AVG, Radiate, helmeted, draped and cuirassed bust left, holding spear and shield
Rev:– MARS VICTOR, Mars walking right, holding spear and trophy
Minted in Lugdunum (II in exe) Emission 5, Officina 2. End A.D. 277 to Early A.D. 278
Reference:– Cohen 339. Bastien 216. RIC 83 Bust type G (Scarce)

3.38 gms
22.73mm
maridvnvm
RI_132wo_img.jpg
132 - Probus - RIC 084 - Bust Type G (Lugdunum) (III)26 viewsObv:– IMP C PROBVS P F AVG, Radiate, helmeted, cuirassed bust left, holding spear and shield
Rev:– MARS VICTOR, Mars walking right, holding spear and trophy
Minted in Lugdunum (III) Emission 5 Officina 3. End A.D. 277 to Early A.D. 278
Reference:– Cohen 336. Bastien 241 (6). RIC 84 Bust Type G (S)

2.59 gms
maridvnvm
RI_132wp_img.jpg
132 - Probus - RIC 085 var. - Bust Type G (Lugdunum) (III)33 viewsObv:– VIRTVS PRO-BI AVG, Radiate, helmeted, cuirassed bust left, holding spear and shield
Rev:– MARS VICTOR, Mars walking right, holding spear and trophy
Minted in Lugdunum (III) Emission 5 Officina 3. End A.D. 277 to Early A.D. 278
Reference(s) – Cohen 343. Bastien 242 (3 examples cited). RIC 85 Bust Type G var (officina)

3.90 gms
maridvnvm
RI_132ii_img.jpg
132 - Probus - RIC 086 - Radiate, helmeted, draped and cuirassed bust left, holding spear and shield, seen from back (Lugdunum) (II)20 viewsObv:– VIRTVS PROBI AVG, Radiate, helmeted, draped and cuirassed bust left, holding spear and shield, seen from back
Rev:– MARS VICTOR, Mars walking right, holding spear and trophy
Minted in Lugdunum (II in exe) Emission 5, Officina 2. End A.D. 277 to Early A.D. 278
Reference:– Bastien 221. RIC 86 Radiate, helmeted, draped and cuirassed bust left, holding spear and shield, seen from back (Scarce)

3.82 gms
23.78mm
maridvnvm
RI_132wc_img.jpg
132 - Probus - RIC 106 38 viewsObv:– VIRTVS PROBI AVG, Radiate, cuirassed bust left, holding spear and shield (shield decorate with Medusa)
Rev:– TEMPOR FELICI, Felicitas standing right, holding caduceus and cornucopiae
Minted in Lugdunum (I) Emission 5, Officina 1. End A.D. 277 – Early A.D. 278
Reference:– Bastien 211 (6 examples cited). RIC 106.

3.96 gms

A coin with some obvious problems but it is a rare variety and one that I am more than happy with. This is the first example of this bust type that I have managed to obtain for Probus from Lugdunum.
1 commentsmaridvnvm
RI_132xr_img.jpg
132 - Probus - RIC 106 (Lugdunum) (I)15 viewsObv:– VIRTVS PROBI AVG, Radiate, helmeted, cuirassed bust left, holding spear and shield, seen from back
Rev:– TEMPOR FELICI, Felicitas standing right, holding caduceus and cornucopiae
Minted in Lugdunum (//I) Emission 5 Officina 1. End A. D. 277 to Early A.D. 278
Reference:– RIC 106. Cohen -, Bastien 210 (11 ex.)

3.97 gms
maridvnvm
RI_132wb_img.jpg
132 - Probus - RIC 106 - Bust Type G (Lugdunum) (I)41 viewsAntonianus
Obv:– VIRTVS PROBI AVG, Radiate, helmeted, cuirassed bust left, holding spear and shield
Rev:– TEMPOR FELICI, Felicitas standing right, holding caduceus and cornucopiae
Minted in Lugdunum (I) Emission 5, Officina 1. End A.D. 277 – Early A.D. 278
Reference:– Bastien 209 (11 examples cited). RIC 106 Bust Type G.
1 commentsmaridvnvm
RI_132ha_img.jpg
132 - Probus - RIC 106 - Radiate, draped and cuirassed bust left, holding spear and shield, seen from back (Lugdunum) (I)19 viewsObv:– VIRTVS PROBI AVG, Radiate, draped and cuirassed bust left, holding spear and shield, seen from back
Rev:– TEMPOR FELICI, Felicitas standing right, holding caduceus and cornucopiae
Minted in Lugdunum (I in exe) Emission 5, Officina 1. End A.D. 277 to Early A.D. 278
Reference:– Cohen 725. Bastien 212. RIC 106 Radiate, draped and cuirassed bust left, holding spear and shield, seen from back

3.92 gms
maridvnvm
RI_132lz_img.jpg
132 - Probus - RIC 111 - Bust Type G (Lugdunum) (IIII)22 viewsObv:– IMP C M AVR PROBVS AVG, Radiate, helmeted, cuirassed bust left, holding spear and shield
Rev:– VIRTVS AVG, Soldier standing left, holding Victory and spear, left hand on shield
Minted in Lugdunum (IIII) Emission 5 Officina 4. End A.D. 277 to Early A.D. 278
Reference:– Cohen 822. Bastien 257 (5 examples). RIC 111 Bust Type G (Scarce)

4.25 gms
23.97mm
1 commentsmaridvnvm
RI_132wq_img.jpg
132 - Probus - RIC 114 - Bust Type G (Lugdunum) (IIII)23 viewsObv:– VIRTVS PROBI AVG, Radiate, helmeted, cuirassed bust left, holding spear and shield
Rev:– VIRTVS AVG, Soldier standing left, holding Victory and spear, left hand on shield
Minted in Lugdunum (IIII) Emission 5 Officina 4. End A.D. 277 to Early A.D. 278
Reference:– Cohen 828. Bastien 259 (7 examples). RIC 114 Bust Type G (Scarce)

3.11 gms
maridvnvm
RI 132by img~0.jpg
132 - Probus - RIC 401 var - Bust Type C (Ticinum) (VIXXT)50 viewsObv:– IMP C M AVR PROBVS AVG, Radiate, draped and cuirassed bust right, seen half from the back
Rev:– RESTITVTOR SAEC, Emperor standing left, holding globe and sceptre, crowned by Victory holding palm.
Minted in Ticinum (VIXXT in exe) Early Emission 2, Officina 6. A.D. 276
Reference:– RIC 401 var Bust type C (Unlisted obverse legend with this type)
It is a variant of RIC 401, with unlisted full spelling of RESTITVTOR.
This is a coin from the very beginning of the second emission of Ticinum (276 CE), before the portrait transitions to Probus proper. Coins from the later part of the emission and already much less Tacitus/Florian in likeness, while not quite 100% Probus himself.
The style is typical for that period, but these coins are scarce, so you do not see them often.
maridvnvm
RI_132vt_img.jpg
132 - Probus - RIC 862 Bust Type H21 viewsAntonianus
Obv:– IMP C M AVR PROBVS AVG, Radiate bust left in imperial mantle, holding sceptre surmounted by eagle
Rev:– SOLI INVICTO, Sol in a spread quadriga facing, radiate, cloak billowing out behind, raising right hand, holding whip in left
Minted in Serdica (KAB) Emission 4, Officina 2. Minted A.D. 277.
Reference:– RIC 862 Bust type H

Nearly filly silvered.
1 commentsmaridvnvm
RI 137j img.jpg
137 - Carinus - RIC V part II Lugdunum 216 Bust Type C19 viewsObv:– IMP C M AVR CARINVS AVG, Radiate, draped and cuirassed bust right
Rev:– SALVS AVGG, Salus standing right, feeding snake
Minted in Lugdunum (_|D / LVG), Emission 7, Officina 4. early A.D. 284
Reference:– RIC 216 Bust Type C. Bastien 585

Ex. P. Gysen
maridvnvm
RI 137d img~0.jpg
137 - Carinus - RIC V part II Lugdunum 216 var28 viewsObv:– IMP C M AVR CARINVS AVG, Radiate, bust right in imperial mantle
Rev:– SALVS AVGG, Salus standing right, feeding snake
Minted in Lugdunum (_|D / LVG), Emission 7, Officina 4. early A.D. 284
Reference:– RIC 216 var (not listed with this bust type in RIC). Cohen -. Bastien 574 (1 example cited)

This would appear to be only the second example if this bust type for Carinus known.
maridvnvm
RI_137e_img.jpg
137 - Carinus - RIC V part II Lugdunum 216 var24 viewsObv:– IMP C M AVR CARINVS AVG, Radiate, bust right in imperial mantle
Rev:– SALVS AVGG, Salus standing right, feeding snake
Minted in Lugdunum (_|D / LVG), Emission 7, Officina 4. early A.D. 284
Reference:– RIC 216 var (not listed with this bust type in RIC). Cohen -. Bastien 574 (1 example cited)

This would appear to be only the second example of this bust type for Carinus known.
maridvnvm
RI 137d img.jpg
137 - Carinus - RIC V part II Lugdunum 223 Bust Type C10 viewsObv:– IMP C M AVR CARINVS AVG, Radiate, draped, cuirassed bust right
Rev:– VIRTVS AVGG, Virtus standing right, holding staff and parazonium, foot on helmet
Minted in Lugdunum (_|A / LVG), Emission 7, Officina 1. early A.D. 284
Reference:– RIC 223 Bust type C. Cohen 173. Bastien 577 (9 examples cited)

Ex Vel Garnett Collection
maridvnvm
RI_137k_img.jpg
137 - Carinus - RIC V part II Lugdunum 223 Bust Type C21 viewsObv:– IMP C M AVR CARINVS AVG, Radiate, draped, cuirassed bust right
Rev:– VIRTVS AVGG, Virtus standing right, holding staff and parazonium, foot on helmet
Minted in Lugdunum (_|A (clogged) / LVG), Emission 7, Officina 1. early A.D. 284
Reference:– RIC 223 Bust type C. Cohen 173. Bastien 577 (9 examples cited)
1 commentsmaridvnvm
RI 137c img.jpg
137 - Carinus Ant. - RIC 247 Bust Type C42 viewsObv:– IMP C M AVR CARINVS AVG, Radiate, draped, cuirassed bust right, seen from the front
Rev:– AETERNIT AVGG, Aeternitas standing left, holding globe surmounted by pheonix
Minted in Rome (KAG in exe.) early Sept. A.D. 283-early Jan. A.D. 284
Reference:– Cohen 16, RIC 247 Bust type C. Gricourt, Venera Hoard, 2709-2771 (63 specimens) One of the specimens illustrated has a small Aeternitas like this example and may even be from the same reverse die.
maridvnvm
drusus as.jpg
14-37 AD - DRUSUS memorial AE As - struck under Tiberius (23 AD)50 viewsobv: DRVSVS CAESAR TI AVG F DIVI AVG N (bare head left)
rev: PONTIF TRIBVN POTEST ITER around large S-C
ref: RIC I 45 (Tiberius), C.2 (2frcs)
10.14gms, 29mm

Drusus (also called Drusus Junior or Drusus the Younger), the only son of Tiberius, became heir to the throne after the death of Germanicus. One of his famous act connected to the mutiny in Pannonia, what broke out when the death of Augustus (19 August 14) was made known. Drusus left Rome to deal with the mutiny before the session of the Senate on the 17 September, when Tiberius was formally adopted him as princeps. He have reached the military camp in Pannonia in the time for the eclipse of the moon in the early hours of the 27 September wich so daunted the mutineers. He was also governor of Illyricum from 17 to 20 AD. Ancient sources concur that Livilla, his wife poisoned him.
berserker
St.Helena.jpg
1401a, St. Helena, Augusta 8 November 324 - 328 to 330 A.D., mother of Constantine the Great96 viewsBronze AE 3, RIC 148, VF, Alexandria mint, 3.243g, 19.4mm, 165o, 327 - 328 A.D. Obverse: FL HELENA AVGVSTA, diademed and mantled bust right wearing double necklace; Reverse: SECVRITAS REIPVBLICE, Securitas holding branch downward in right and lifting fold of robe in left, wreath left, I right, SMAL in exergue; rare.

The mother of Constantine the Great, born about the middle of the third century, possibly in Drepanum (later known as Helenopolis) on the Nicomedian Gulf; died about 330. She was of humble parentage; St. Ambrose, in his "Oratio de obitu Theodosii", referred to her as a stabularia, or inn-keeper. Nevertheless, she became the lawful wife of Constantius Chlorus. Her first and only son, Constantine, was born in Naissus in Upper Moesia, in the year 274. The statement made by English chroniclers of the Middle Ages, according to which Helena was supposed to have been the daughter of a British prince, is entirely without historical foundation. It may arise from the misinterpretation of a term used in the fourth chapter of the panegyric on Constantine's marriage with Fausta, that Constantine, oriendo (i. e., "by his beginnings," "from the outset") had honoured Britain, which was taken as an allusion to his birth, whereas the reference was really to the beginning of his reign.

On the death of Constantius Chlorus, in 308, Constantine, who succeeded him, summoned his mother to the imperial court, conferred on her the title of Augusta, ordered that all honour should be paid her as the mother of the sovereign, and had coins struck bearing her effigy. Her son's influence caused her to embrace Christianity after his victory over Maxentius. This is directly attested by Eusebius (Vita Constantini, III, xlvii): "She (his mother) became under his (Constantine's) influence such a devout servant of God, that one might believe her to have been from her very childhood a disciple of the Redeemer of mankind". It is also clear from the declaration of the contemporary historian of the Church that Helena, from the time of her conversion had an earnestly Christian life and by her influence and liberality favoured the wider spread of Christianity. Tradition links her name with the building of Christian churches in the cities of the West, where the imperial court resided, notably at Rome and Trier, and there is no reason for rejecting this tradition, for we know positively through Eusebius that Helena erected churches on the hallowed spots of Palestine. Despite her advanced age she undertook a journey to Palestine when Constantine, through his victory over Licinius, had become sole master of the Roman Empire, subsequently, therefore, to the year 324. It was in Palestine, as we learn from Eusebius (loc. cit., xlii), that she had resolved to bring to God, the King of kings, the homage and tribute of her devotion. She lavished on that land her bounties and good deeds, she "explored it with remarkable discernment", and "visited it with the care and solicitude of the emperor himself". Then, when she "had shown due veneration to the footsteps of the Saviour", she had two churches erected for the worship of God: one was raised in Bethlehem near the Grotto of the Nativity, the other on the Mount of the Ascension, near Jerusalem. She also embellished the sacred grotto with rich ornaments. This sojourn in Jerusalem proved the starting-point of the legend first recorded by Rufinus as to the discovery of the Cross of Christ.

Constantine I, in 327, improved Drepanum, his mother's native town, and decreed that it should be called Helenopolis, it is probable that the latter returned from Palestine to her son who was then residing in the Orient. Constantine was with her when she died, at the advanced age of eighty years or thereabouts (Eusebius, "Vita Const.", III, xlvi). This must have been about the year 330, for the last coins which are known to have been stamped with her name bore this date. Her body was brought to Constantinople and laid to rest in the imperial vault of the church of the Apostles. It is presumed that her remains were transferred in 849 to the Abbey of Hautvillers, in the French Archdiocese of Reims, as recorded by the monk Altmann in his "Translatio". She was revered as a saint, and the veneration spread, early in the ninth century, even to Western countries. Her feast falls on 18 August.

(See The Catholic Encyclopedia: http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/07202b.htm)

Cleisthenes
Const1GlrEx.jpg
1403b, Constantine I (the Great), early 307 - 22 May 337 A.D.37 viewsConstantine the Great, early 307 - 22 May 337 A.D., Bronze AE 3, RIC 137, VF, Constantinople mint, 1.476g, 16.4mm, 180o, 336 - 337 A.D. Obverse: CONSTANTI-NVS MAX AVG, laurel and rosette-diademed, draped and cuirassed bust right; Reverse: GLOR-IA EXERC-ITVS, two soldiers, each holding spear and shield on ground, flanking standard, CONS[ ] in exergue. Ex FORVM.

The Emperor Constantine I was effectively the sole ruler of the Roman world between 324 and 337 A.D.; his reign was perhaps one of the most crucial of all the emperors in determining the future course of western civilization. By beginning the process of making Christianity the religious foundation of his realm, he set the religious course for the future of Europe which remains in place to this very day. Because he replaced Rome with Constantinople as the center of imperial power, he made it clear that the city of Rome was no longer the center of power and he also set the stage for the Middle Ages. His philosophical view of monarchy, largely spelled out in some of the works of Eusebius of Caesarea, became the foundation for the concept of the divine right of kings which prevailed in Europe.

Constantine was not a "Christian convert" in any traditional sense. He was not baptized until close to death, and while that was not an uncommon practice, the mention of Christ in his speeches and decrees is conspicuous by its absence. Eusebius, Church historian and Constantine biographer, is responsible for much of the valorization of Constantine as the Christian Emperor. The somnambulant "sign" in which Constantine was to become victor at the Milvian Bridge is, not so surprisingly, revealed to posterity long after the "fact." Throughout his reign, Constantine continues to portray himself on coins as a sun god (Freeman, Charles. Egypt, Greece and Rome: Civilizations of the Ancient Mediterranean; Second Edition. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004. 582). Above all, Constantine was a pragmatist. It would be cynical to egregiously disavow his commitment to Christianity, but it would be equally wrong to think that he would allow Christianity to meddle in the governance of his empire. As he reputedly told a group of bishops, "You are bishops of those within the church, but I am perhaps a bishop appointed by God of those outside." Whatever the motives for his decision to support Christianity, Christianity benefitted from the arrangement. So, too, did Constantine. It was a match made in heaven.
J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.

For perhaps the best Constantine The Great site on the web, see Victor Clark's Constantine The Great Coins: http://www.constantinethegreatcoins.com/
Cleisthenes
CTGDafne.jpg
1403c, Constantine I (the Great), early 307 - 22 May 337 A.D.49 viewsBronze AE 3, RIC VII 35, choice aEF, Constantinople mint, 3.336g, 20.0mm, 180o, 328 A.D.; Obverse: CONSTANTI-NVS MAX AVG, laurel and rosette diademed, draped and cuirassed bust right; Reverse: CONSTANTINI-ANA DAFNE, Victory seated left on cippus, head right, palm frond in each hand, trophy and captive before, CONS in exergue, B left; scarce. Ex FORVM.

"The information about Constantine's campaign across [the Danube] is obscure and untrustworthy. The question, therefore, of what he achieved by this enterprise was, and is, subject to contradictory interpretations. On the one hand, the Panegyrists claimed that he had repeated the triumphs of Trajan. On the other, his own nephew, Julian the Apostate, spoke for many when he expressed the view that this second 'conquest' of Dacia was incomplete and extremely brief . . . monetary commemoration was accorded to the building, at about the same time [AD 328], of the river frontier fortress of Constantiniana Dafne (Spantov, near Oltenita) . . ." (Grant, Michael. The Emperor Constantine. London: Phoenix, 1998. 58-9).

The Emperor Constantine I was effectively the sole ruler of the Roman world between 324 and 337 A.D.; his reign was perhaps one of the most crucial of all the emperors in determining the future course of western civilization. By beginning the process of making Christianity the religious foundation of his realm, he set the religious course for the future of Europe which remains in place to this very day. Because he replaced Rome with Constantinople as the center of imperial power, he made it clear that the city of Rome was no longer the center of power and he also set the stage for the Middle Ages. His philosophical view of monarchy, largely spelled out in some of the works of Eusebius of Caesarea, became the foundation for the concept of the divine right of kings which prevailed in Europe.

Constantine was not a "Christian convert" in any traditional sense. He was not baptized until close to death, and while that was not an uncommon practice, the mention of Christ in his speeches and decrees is conspicuous by its absence. Eusebius, Church historian and Constantine biographer, is responsible for much of the valorization of Constantine as the Christian Emperor. The somnambulant "sign" in which Constantine was to become victor at the Milvian Bridge is, not so surprisingly, revealed to posterity long after the "fact." Throughout his reign, Constantine continues to portray himself on coins as a sun god (Freeman, Charles. Egypt, Greece and Rome: Civilizations of the Ancient Mediterranean; Second Edition. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004. 582). Above all, Constantine was a pragmatist. It would be cynical to egregiously disavow his commitment to Christianity, but it would be equally wrong to think that he would allow Christianity to meddle in the governance of his empire. As he reputedly told a group of bishops, "You are bishops of those within the church, but I am perhaps a bishop appointed by God of those outside." Whatever the motives for his decision to support Christianity, Christianity benefitted from the arrangement. So, too, did Constantine. It was a match made in heaven.
J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.

For perhaps the best Constantine The Great site on the web, see Victor Clark's Constantine The Great Coins: http://www.constantinethegreatcoins.com/
1 commentsCleisthenes
CTGKyzAE3.jpg
1403d, Constantine I (the Great), early 307 - 22 May 337 A.D. (Cyzicus)37 viewsConstantine the Great, early 307 - 22 May 337 A.D. Bronze AE 3, RIC 199, gVF, corrosion, Cyzicus, 1.402g, 16.2mm, 0o, 336 - 337 A.D. Obverse: CONSTANTI-NVS MAX AVG, laurel and rosette-diademed, draped and cuirassed bust right; Reverse: GLOR-IA EXERC-ITVS•, two soldiers, each holding spear and shield on ground, flanking standard, SMKA in exergue.

The Emperor Constantine I was effectively the sole ruler of the Roman world between 324 and 337 A.D.; his reign was perhaps one of the most crucial of all the emperors in determining the future course of western civilization. By beginning the process of making Christianity the religious foundation of his realm, he set the religious course for the future of Europe which remains in place to this very day. Because he replaced Rome with Constantinople as the center of imperial power, he made it clear that the city of Rome was no longer the center of power and he also set the stage for the Middle Ages. His philosophical view of monarchy, largely spelled out in some of the works of Eusebius of Caesarea, became the foundation for the concept of the divine right of kings which prevailed in Europe.

Constantine was not a "Christian convert" in any traditional sense. He was not baptized until close to death, and while that was not an uncommon practice, the mention of Christ in his speeches and decrees is conspicuous by its absence. Eusebius, Church historian and Constantine biographer, is responsible for much of the valorization of Constantine as the Christian Emperor. The somnambulant "sign" in which Constantine was to become victor at the Milvian Bridge is, not so surprisingly, revealed to posterity long after the "fact." Throughout his reign, Constantine continues to portray himself on coins as a sun god (Freeman, Charles. Egypt, Greece and Rome: Civilizations of the Ancient Mediterranean; Second Edition. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004. 582). Above all, Constantine was a pragmatist. It would be cynical to egregiously disavow his commitment to Christianity, but it would be equally wrong to think that he would allow Christianity to meddle in the governance of his empire. As he reputedly told a group of bishops, "You are bishops of those within the church, but I am perhaps a bishop appointed by God of those outside." Whatever the motives for his decision to support Christianity, Christianity benefitted from the arrangement. So, too, did Constantine. It was a match made in heaven.
J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.

For perhaps the best Constantine The Great site on the web, see Victor Clark's Constantine The Great Coins: http://www.constantinethegreatcoins.com/
Cleisthenes
CTGVOTXXX.jpg
1403e, Constantine I (the Great), early 307 - 22 May 337 A.D. (Heraclea)28 viewsConstantine the Great, Bronze AE 3, RIC 69, VF, Heraclea, 3.38g, 19.0mm, 180o, 325 - 326 A.D. Obverse: CONSTAN-TINVS AVG, laureate head right; Reverse: D N CONSTANTINI MAX AVG, VOT XXX in wreath, SMHD in exergue.

The Emperor Constantine I was effectively the sole ruler of the Roman world between 324 and 337 A.D.; his reign was perhaps one of the most crucial of all the emperors in determining the future course of western civilization. By beginning the process of making Christianity the religious foundation of his realm, he set the religious course for the future of Europe which remains in place to this very day. Because he replaced Rome with Constantinople as the center of imperial power, he made it clear that the city of Rome was no longer the center of power and he also set the stage for the Middle Ages. His philosophical view of monarchy, largely spelled out in some of the works of Eusebius of Caesarea, became the foundation for the concept of the divine right of kings which prevailed in Europe.

Constantine was not a "Christian convert" in any traditional sense. He was not baptized until close to death, and while that was not an uncommon practice, the mention of Christ in his speeches and decrees is conspicuous by its absence. Eusebius, Church historian and Constantine biographer, is responsible for much of the valorization of Constantine as the Christian Emperor. The somnambulant "sign" in which Constantine was to become victor at the Milvian Bridge is, not so surprisingly, revealed to posterity long after the "fact." Throughout his reign, Constantine continues to portray himself on coins as a sun god (Freeman, Charles. Egypt, Greece and Rome: Civilizations of the Ancient Mediterranean; Second Edition. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004. 582). Above all, Constantine was a pragmatist. It would be cynical to egregiously disavow his commitment to Christianity, but it would be equally wrong to think that he would allow Christianity to meddle in the governance of his empire. As he reputedly told a group of bishops, "You are bishops of those within the church, but I am perhaps a bishop appointed by God of those outside." Whatever the motives for his decision to support Christianity, Christianity benefitted from the arrangement. So, too, did Constantine. It was a match made in heaven.
J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.

For perhaps the best Constantine The Great site on the web, see Victor Clark's Constantine The Great Coins: http://www.constantinethegreatcoins.com/
Cleisthenes
12817p00.jpg
1403f, Constantine I (the Great), early 307 - 22 May 337 A.D. (Heraclea)20 viewsBronze follis, RIC 5, F/aF, 3.513g, 20.4mm, 180o, Heraclea mint, 313 A.D.; obverse IMP C FL VAL CONSTANTINVS P F AVG, laureate head right; reverse IOVI CONSER-VATORI AVGG, Jupiter standing left holding Victory and scepter, eagle with wreath in beek at feet, B in right field, SMHT in exergue.

The Emperor Constantine I was effectively the sole ruler of the Roman world between 324 and 337 A.D.; his reign was perhaps one of the most crucial of all the emperors in determining the future course of western civilization. By beginning the process of making Christianity the religious foundation of his realm, he set the religious course for the future of Europe which remains in place to this very day. Because he replaced Rome with Constantinople as the center of imperial power, he made it clear that the city of Rome was no longer the center of power and he also set the stage for the Middle Ages. His philosophical view of monarchy, largely spelled out in some of the works of Eusebius of Caesarea, became the foundation for the concept of the divine right of kings which prevailed in Europe.

Constantine was not a "Christian convert" in any traditional sense. He was not baptized until close to death, and while that was not an uncommon practice, the mention of Christ in his speeches and decrees is conspicuous by its absence. Eusebius, Church historian and Constantine biographer, is responsible for much of the valorization of Constantine as the Christian Emperor. The somnambulant "sign" in which Constantine was to become victor at the Milvian Bridge is, not so surprisingly, revealed to posterity long after the "fact." Throughout his reign, Constantine continues to portray himself on coins as a sun god (Freeman, Charles. Egypt, Greece and Rome: Civilizations of the Ancient Mediterranean; Second Edition. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004. 582). Above all, Constantine was a pragmatist. It would be cynical to egregiously disavow his commitment to Christianity, but it would be equally wrong to think that he would allow Christianity to meddle in the governance of his empire. As he reputedly told a group of bishops, "You are bishops of those within the church, but I am perhaps a bishop appointed by God of those outside." Whatever the motives for his decision to support Christianity, Christianity benefitted from the arrangement. So, too, did Constantine. It was a match made in heaven.
J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.

For perhaps the best Constantine The Great site on the web, see Victor Clark's Constantine The Great Coins: http://www.constantinethegreatcoins.com/
Cleisthenes
CTGaeFolNico.jpg
1403g, Constantine I (the Great), early 307 - 22 May 337 A.D. (Nicomedia)22 viewsConstantine the Great, early 307 - 22 May 337 A.D. Bronze follis, RIC 12, aVF, Nicomedia mint, 2.760g, 22.0mm, 0o, 313 - 317 A.D. Obverse: IMP C FL VAL CONSTANTINVS P F AVG, laureate head right; Reverse: IOVI CONS-ERVATORI, Jupiter standing left holding Victory on globe and scepter, eagle with wreath in beak left, G right, SMN in exergue; scarce.

The Emperor Constantine I was effectively the sole ruler of the Roman world between 324 and 337 A.D.; his reign was perhaps one of the most crucial of all the emperors in determining the future course of western civilization. By beginning the process of making Christianity the religious foundation of his realm, he set the religious course for the future of Europe which remains in place to this very day. Because he replaced Rome with Constantinople as the center of imperial power, he made it clear that the city of Rome was no longer the center of power and he also set the stage for the Middle Ages. His philosophical view of monarchy, largely spelled out in some of the works of Eusebius of Caesarea, became the foundation for the concept of the divine right of kings which prevailed in Europe.

Constantine was not a "Christian convert" in any traditional sense. He was not baptized until close to death, and while that was not an uncommon practice, the mention of Christ in his speeches and decrees is conspicuous by its absence. Eusebius, Church historian and Constantine biographer, is responsible for much of the valorization of Constantine as the Christian Emperor. The somnambulant "sign" in which Constantine was to become victor at the Milvian Bridge is, not so surprisingly, revealed to posterity long after the "fact." Throughout his reign, Constantine continues to portray himself on coins as a sun god (Freeman, Charles. Egypt, Greece and Rome: Civilizations of the Ancient Mediterranean; Second Edition. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004. 582). Above all, Constantine was a pragmatist. It would be cynical to egregiously disavow his commitment to Christianity, but it would be equally wrong to think that he would allow Christianity to meddle in the governance of his empire. As he reputedly told a group of bishops, "You are bishops of those within the church, but I am perhaps a bishop appointed by God of those outside." Whatever the motives for his decision to support Christianity, Christianity benefitted from the arrangement. So, too, did Constantine. It was a match made in heaven.
J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.

For perhaps the best Constantine The Great site on the web, see Victor Clark's Constantine The Great Coins: http://www.constantinethegreatcoins.com/
Cleisthenes
CTG.jpg
1403h, Constantine I (the Great), early 307 - 22 May 337 A.D. (Siscia)36 viewsBronze follis, RIC 232b, gVF, Siscia, 3.87g, 23.8mm, 180o, early 313 A.D. Obverse: IMP CONSTANTINVS P F AVG, laureate head right; Reverse: IOVI CONSERVATORI AVGG NN, Jupiter standing left holding Victory on globe and scepter, eagle with wreath in beak left, E right, SIS in exergue.

The Emperor Constantine I was effectively the sole ruler of the Roman world between 324 and 337 A.D.; his reign was perhaps one of the most crucial of all the emperors in determining the future course of western civilization. By beginning the process of making Christianity the religious foundation of his realm, he set the religious course for the future of Europe which remains in place to this very day. Because he replaced Rome with Constantinople as the center of imperial power, he made it clear that the city of Rome was no longer the center of power and he also set the stage for the Middle Ages. His philosophical view of monarchy, largely spelled out in some of the works of Eusebius of Caesarea, became the foundation for the concept of the divine right of kings which prevailed in Europe.

Constantine was not a "Christian convert" in any traditional sense. He was not baptized until close to death, and while that was not an uncommon practice, the mention of Christ in his speeches and decrees is conspicuous by its absence. Eusebius, Church historian and Constantine biographer, is responsible for much of the valorization of Constantine as the Christian Emperor. The somnambulant "sign" in which Constantine was to become victor at the Milvian Bridge is, not so surprisingly, revealed to posterity long after the "fact." Throughout his reign, Constantine continues to portray himself on coins as a sun god (Freeman, Charles. Egypt, Greece and Rome: Civilizations of the Ancient Mediterranean; Second Edition. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004. 582). Above all, Constantine was a pragmatist. It would be cynical to egregiously disavow his commitment to Christianity, but it would be equally wrong to think that he would allow Christianity to meddle in the governance of his empire. As he reputedly told a group of bishops, "You are bishops of those within the church, but I am perhaps a bishop appointed by God of those outside." Whatever the motives for his decision to support Christianity, Christianity benefitted from the arrangement. So, too, did Constantine. It was a match made in heaven.
J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.

For perhaps the best Constantine The Great site on the web, see Victor Clark's Constantine The Great Coins: http://www.constantinethegreatcoins.com/
Cleisthenes
CTG_SisCmpGte.jpg
1403i, Constantine I (the Great), early 307 - 22 May 337 A.D. (Siscia)42 viewsSilvered AE 3, RIC 214, VF, Siscia mint, 3.187g, 19.3mm, 0o, 328 - 329 A.D.
Obverse: CONSTAN-TINVS AVG, laureate head right; Reverse PROVIDEN-TIAE AVGG, campgate with two turrets, star above, ASIS and double crescent in exergue.

Flavius Valerius Constantinus, Constantine the Great, was the son of Helena and the First Tetrarchic ruler Constantius I. Constantine is most famous for his conversion to Christianity and the battle of the Milvian Bridge where he defeated emperor Maxentius. It is reputed that before the battle, he saw the words "In Hoc Signo Victor Eris" (By this sign you shall conquer) emblazoned on the sun around the Chi Rho, the symbol of Christianity. Other sources claim the vision came to Constantine I in a dream. The story continues that after placing this Christogram on the shields of his army, he defeated his opponent and thus ruled the empire through divine providence. Constantine I also shifted the capital of the empire to Constantinople, establishing the foundation for an Empire that would last another 1000 years. He died in 337 and his sons divided the Roman territories.

The Emperor Constantine I was effectively the sole ruler of the Roman world between 324 and 337 A.D.; his reign was perhaps one of the most crucial of all the emperors in determining the future course of western civilization. By beginning the process of making Christianity the religious foundation of his realm, he set the religious course for the future of Europe which remains in place to this very day. Because he replaced Rome with Constantinople as the center of imperial power, he made it clear that the city of Rome was no longer the center of power, and he also set the stage for the Middle Ages. His philosophical view of monarchy, largely spelled out in some of the works of Eusebius of Caesarea, became the foundation for the concept of the divine right of kings which prevailed in Europe.

Constantine was not a "Christian convert" in any traditional sense. He was not baptized until close to death, and while that was not an uncommon practice, the mention of Christ in his speeches and decrees is conspicuous by its absence. Eusebius, Church historian and Constantine biographer, is responsible for much of the valorization of Constantine as the Christian Emperor. The somnambulant "sign" in which Constantine was to become victor at the Milvian Bridge is, not so surprisingly, revealed to posterity long after the "fact." Throughout his reign, Constantine continues to portray himself on coins as a sun god (Freeman, Charles. Egypt, Greece and Rome: Civilizations of the Ancient Mediterranean; Second Edition. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004. 582). Above all, Constantine was a pragmatist. It would be cynical to egregiously disavow his commitment to Christianity, but it would be equally wrong to think that he would allow Christianity to meddle in the governance of his empire. As he reputedly told a group of bishops, "You are bishops of those within the church, but I am perhaps a bishop appointed by God of those outside." Whatever the motives for his decision to support Christianity, Christianity benefitted from the arrangement. So, too, did Constantine. It was a match made in heaven.
J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.

For perhaps the best Constantine The Great site on the web, see Victor Clark's Constantine The Great Coins: http://www.constantinethegreatcoins.com/
Cleisthenes
CTG_ThesCmpGte.jpg
1403j, Constantine I (the Great), early 307 - 22 May 337 A.D. (Thessalonica)26 viewsBronze AE 3, RIC 153, VF, Thessalonica mint, 2.955g, 19.7mm, 0o, 326 - 328 A.D. Obverse: CONSTAN-TINVS AVG, laureate head right; Reverse: PROVIDEN-TIAE AVGG, campgate with two turrets, star above, dot right, SMTSG in exergue.

Flavius Valerius Constantinus, Constantine the Great, was the son of Helena and the First Tetrarchic ruler Constantius I. Constantine is most famous for his conversion to Christianity and the battle of the Milvian Bridge where he defeated emperor Maxentius. It is reputed that before the battle, he saw the words "In Hoc Signo Victor Eris" (By this sign you shall conquer) emblazoned on the sun around the Chi Rho, the symbol of Christianity. Other sources claim the vision came to Constantine I in a dream. The story continues that after placing this Christogram on the shields of his army, he defeated his opponent and thus ruled the empire through divine providence. Constantine I also shifted the capital of the empire to Constantinople, establishing the foundation for an Empire that would last another 1000 years. He died in 337 and his sons divided the Roman territories.

The Emperor Constantine I was effectively the sole ruler of the Roman world between 324 and 337 A.D.; his reign was perhaps one of the most crucial of all the emperors in determining the future course of western civilization. By beginning the process of making Christianity the religious foundation of his realm, he set the religious course for the future of Europe which remains in place to this very day. Because he replaced Rome with Constantinople as the center of imperial power, he made it clear that the city of Rome was no longer the center of power, and he also set the stage for the Middle Ages. His philosophical view of monarchy, largely spelled out in some of the works of Eusebius of Caesarea, became the foundation for the concept of the divine right of kings which prevailed in Europe.

Constantine was not a "Christian convert" in any traditional sense. He was not baptized until close to death, and while that was not an uncommon practice, the mention of Christ in his speeches and decrees is conspicuous by its absence. Eusebius, Church historian and Constantine biographer, is responsible for much of the valorization of Constantine as the Christian Emperor. The somnambulant "sign" in which Constantine was to become victor at the Milvian Bridge is, not so surprisingly, revealed to posterity long after the "fact." Throughout his reign, Constantine continues to portray himself on coins as a sun god (Freeman, Charles. Egypt, Greece and Rome: Civilizations of the Ancient Mediterranean; Second Edition. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004. 582). Above all, Constantine was a pragmatist. It would be cynical to egregiously disavow his commitment to Christianity, but it would be equally wrong to think that he would allow Christianity to meddle in the governance of his empire. As he reputedly told a group of bishops, "You are bishops of those within the church, but I am perhaps a bishop appointed by God of those outside." Whatever the motives for his decision to support Christianity, Christianity benefitted from the arrangement. So, too, did Constantine. It was a match made in heaven.
J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.

For perhaps the best Constantine The Great site on the web, see Victor Clark's Constantine The Great Coins: http://www.constantinethegreatcoins.com/
Cleisthenes
CrispusRIC17.jpg
1404a, Crispus, Caesar 317 - 326 A.D. 38 viewsBronze AE 3, RIC 17, aEF, Cyzicus mint, 3.196g, 19.9mm, 315o, 321 - 324 A.D.; Obverse: D N FL IVL CRISPVS NOB CAES, laureate, draped and cuirassed bust right; Reverse: IOVI CONSERVATORI, Jupiter standing left holding Victory on globe in right and scepter in left, eagle with wreath in beak to left, X / IIG and captive right, SMKD in exergue; scarce (RIC R3). Ex FORVM.


De Imperatoribus Romanis;
An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Emperors and their Families

Crispus Caesar (317-326 A.D.)

Hans Pohlsander
SUNY Albany

Crispus was the oldest son of the emperor Constantine I and played a fairly important role in the political and military events of the early fourth century. The regular form of his full name is Flavius Iulius Crispus, although the forms Flavius Claudius Crispus and Flavius Valerius Crispus also occur. His mother was a woman named Minervina, with whom Constantine had a relationship, probably illegitimate, before he married Fausta in 307. When Minervina died or when Constantine put her aside we do not know. Nor do we know when she gave birth to Crispus; we may assume, of course, that it was before 307. Some modern authorities, on good grounds, think that it was in 305. Crispus' place of birth must have been somewhere in the East, and it is not known when he was brought to Gaul and when, where, or under what circumstances he was separated from his mother.

Constantine entrusted the education of his son to the distinguished Christian scholar Lactantius, thereby giving a clear sign of his commitment to Christianity. We are not told when Lactantius assumed his duties, but a date before 317 seems likely. Nor do we know how successful he was in instilling Christian beliefs and values in his imperial pupil. No later than January of 322 Crispus must have married a woman named Helena -- not to be confused with Constantine's mother or daughter by the same name- and this woman bore him a child in October of 322. Constantine, we learn, was pleased.

Crispus' official career began at an early age and is well documented. On March 1 of 317, at Serdica (modern Sofia), his father appointed him Caesar. The consulship was his three times, in 318, 321, and 324. While nominally in charge of Gaul, with a prefect at his side, he successfully undertook military operations against the Franks and Alamanni in 320 and 323.

In 324, during the second war between Constantine and Licinius, he excelled as commander of Constantine's fleet in the waters of the Hellespont, the Propontis, and the Bosporus, thus making a significant contribution to the outcome of that war. The high points of his career are amply reflected in the imperial coinage. In addition to coins, we have his portrait, with varying degrees of certainty, in a number of sculptures, mosaics, cameos, etc. Contemporary authors heap praises upon him. Thus the panegyrist Nazarius speaks of Crispus' "magnificent deeds," and Eusebius calls him "an emperor most dear to God and in all regards comparable to his father."

Crispus' end was as tragic as his career had been brilliant. His own father ordered him to be put to death. We know the year of this sad event, 326, from the Consularia Constantinopolitana, and the place, Pola in Istria, from Ammianus Marcellinus. The circumstances, however, are less clear. Zosimus (6th c.) and Zonaras (12th c.) both report that Crispus and his stepmother Fausta were involved in an illicit relationship. There may be as much gossip as fact in their reports, but it is certain that at some time during the same year the emperor ordered the death of his own wife as well, and the two cases must be considered together. That Crispus and Fausta plotted treason is reported by Gregory of Tours, but not very believable. We must resolutely reject the claim of Zosimus that it was Constantine's sense of guilt over these deeds which caused him to accept Christianity, as it alone promised him forgiveness for his sins. A similar claim had already been made by Julian the Apostate. We must also, I think, reject the suggestion of Guthrie that the emperor acted in the interest of "dynastic legitimacy," that is, that he removed his illegitimate first-born son in order to secure the succession for his three legitimate younger sons. But Crispus must have committed, or at least must have been suspected of having committed, some especially shocking offense to earn him a sentence of death from his own father. He also suffered damnatio memoriae, his honor was never restored, and history has not recorded the fate of his wife and his child (or children).

Copyright (C) 1997, Hans A. Pohlsander. Published on De Imperatoribus Romanis;An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Emperors and their Families:
http://www.roman-emperors.org/crispus.htm


What If?

St. Nectarios, in his book, The Ecumenical Synods, writes "Hellenism spread by Alexander paved the way for Christianity by Emperor Constantine the Great."

Constantine's upward gaze on his "Eyes to Heaven" coins recall the coin portraits of Alexander the Great (namely coins struck by the Diodochi), which served as prototypes for the divine ruler portraiture of much of the Hellenistic age. The diadem, of which this is the most elaborate type, was adopted by Constantine and the members of his house as a new symbol of sovereignty.

In the Greek Orthodox Church, Constantine the Great is revered as a Saint.

Is it just possible? Constantine, knowing what happened (or thinking that he does) to Phillip II of Macedon—assassinated on the eve of his greatness, in a plot that most likely involved his wife—and possibly his son. . . isn’t it just possible that Constantine is growing obsessively jealous of his ever more successful and adulated son? Imagine the Constantine who has proven time and again (think: Licinius) that he is a completely self-serving liar and a murderer, decides to murder again? Why "must we resolutely reject the claim of Zosimus that it was Constantine's sense of guilt over these deeds which caused him to accept Christianity, as it alone promised him forgiveness for his sins [?] (see: above). A similar claim had already been made by Julian the [Philosopher]."

Perhaps it is time to cease being apologists for the sometime megalomaniacal Constantine. As Michael Grant notes, "It is a mocking travesty of justice to call such a murderer Constantine the Great . . ." (Grant, Michael. The Emperor Constantine. London: Phoenix Press, 1998. 226).


Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.


Cleisthenes
crispus_votV.jpg
1404b, Crispus, Caesar 317 - 326 A.D. (Thessalonica)35 viewsBronze AE 3, RIC 118, VF, Thessalonica mint, 2.740g, 18.0mm, 180o, 320 - 321 A.D. Obverse: FL IVL CRISPVS NOB CAES, laureate, draped and cuirassed bust left; Reverse: CAESARVM NOSTRORVM, VOT V in wreath, TSDVI in exergue.

Flavius Julius Crispus was the son of Constantine I by his first wife. A brilliant soldier, Crispus was well loved by all until 326 A.D., when Constantine had him executed. It is said that Fausta, Crispus stepmother, anxious to secure the succession for her own sons falsely accused Crispus of raping her. Constantine, learning of Fausta`s treachery, had her executed too.


De Imperatoribus Romanis;
An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Emperors and their Families

Crispus Caesar (317-326 A.D.)

Hans Pohlsander
SUNY Albany

Crispus was the oldest son of the emperor Constantine I and played a fairly important role in the political and military events of the early fourth century. The regular form of his full name is Flavius Iulius Crispus, although the forms Flavius Claudius Crispus and Flavius Valerius Crispus also occur. His mother was a woman named Minervina, with whom Constantine had a relationship, probably illegitimate, before he married Fausta in 307. When Minervina died or when Constantine put her aside we do not know. Nor do we know when she gave birth to Crispus; we may assume, of course, that it was before 307. Some modern authorities, on good grounds, think that it was in 305. Crispus' place of birth must have been somewhere in the East, and it is not known when he was brought to Gaul and when, where, or under what circumstances he was separated from his mother.

Constantine entrusted the education of his son to the distinguished Christian scholar Lactantius, thereby giving a clear sign of his commitment to Christianity. We are not told when Lactantius assumed his duties, but a date before 317 seems likely. Nor do we know how successful he was in instilling Christian beliefs and values in his imperial pupil. No later than January of 322 Crispus must have married a woman named Helena -- not to be confused with Constantine's mother or daughter by the same name- and this woman bore him a child in October of 322. Constantine, we learn, was pleased.

Crispus' official career began at an early age and is well documented. On March 1 of 317, at Serdica (modern Sofia), his father appointed him Caesar. The consulship was his three times, in 318, 321, and 324. While nominally in charge of Gaul, with a prefect at his side, he successfully undertook military operations against the Franks and Alamanni in 320 and 323.

In 324, during the second war between Constantine and Licinius, he excelled as commander of Constantine's fleet in the waters of the Hellespont, the Propontis, and the Bosporus, thus making a significant contribution to the outcome of that war. The high points of his career are amply reflected in the imperial coinage. In addition to coins, we have his portrait, with varying degrees of certainty, in a number of sculptures, mosaics, cameos, etc. Contemporary authors heap praises upon him. Thus the panegyrist Nazarius speaks of Crispus' "magnificent deeds," and Eusebius calls him "an emperor most dear to God and in all regards comparable to his father."

Crispus' end was as tragic as his career had been brilliant. His own father ordered him to be put to death. We know the year of this sad event, 326, from the Consularia Constantinopolitana, and the place, Pola in Istria, from Ammianus Marcellinus. The circumstances, however, are less clear. Zosimus (6th c.) and Zonaras (12th c.) both report that Crispus and his stepmother Fausta were involved in an illicit relationship. There may be as much gossip as fact in their reports, but it is certain that at some time during the same year the emperor ordered the death of his own wife as well, and the two cases must be considered together. That Crispus and Fausta plotted treason is reported by Gregory of Tours, but not very believable. We must resolutely reject the claim of Zosimus that it was Constantine's sense of guilt over these deeds which caused him to accept Christianity, as it alone promised him forgiveness for his sins. A similar claim had already been made by Julian the Apostate. We must also, I think, reject the suggestion of Guthrie that the emperor acted in the interest of "dynastic legitimacy," that is, that he removed his illegitimate first-born son in order to secure the succession for his three legitimate younger sons. But Crispus must have committed, or at least must have been suspected of having committed, some especially shocking offense to earn him a sentence of death from his own father. He also suffered damnatio memoriae, his honor was never restored, and history has not recorded the fate of his wife and his child (or children).

Copyright (C) 1997, Hans A. Pohlsander. Published on De Imperatoribus Romanis;An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Emperors and their Families:
http://www.roman-emperors.org/crispus.htm


What If?

St. Nectarios, in his book, The Ecumenical Synods, writes "Hellenism spread by Alexander paved the way for Christianity by Emperor Constantine the Great."

Constantine's upward gaze on his "Eyes to Heaven" coins recall the coin portraits of Alexander the Great (namely coins struck by the Diodochi), which served as prototypes for the divine ruler portraiture of much of the Hellenistic age. The diadem, of which this is the most elaborate type, was adopted by Constantine and the members of his house as a new symbol of sovereignty.

In the Greek Orthodox Church, Constantine the Great is revered as a Saint.

Is it just possible? Constantine, knowing what happened (or thinking that he does) to Phillip II of Macedon—assassinated on the eve of his greatness, in a plot that most likely involved his wife—and possibly his son. . . isn’t it just possible that Constantine is growing obsessively jealous of his ever more successful and adulated son? Imagine the Constantine who has proven time and again (think: Licinius) that he is a completely self-serving liar and a murderer, decides to murder again? Why "must we resolutely reject the claim of Zosimus that it was Constantine's sense of guilt over these deeds which caused him to accept Christianity, as it alone promised him forgiveness for his sins [?] (see: above). A similar claim had already been made by Julian the [Philosopher]."

Perhaps it is time to cease being apologists for the sometime megalomaniacal Constantine. As Michael Grant notes, "It is a mocking travesty of justice to call such a murderer Constantine the Great . . ." (Grant, Michael. The Emperor Constantine. London: Phoenix Press, 1998. 226).


Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.
Cleisthenes
Julian2VotXConstantinople.jpg
1409a, Julian II "the Philosopher," February 360 - 26 June 363 A.D.143 viewsJulian II, A.D. 360-363; RIC 167; VF; 2.7g, 20mm; Constantinople mint; Obverse: DN FL CL IVLIANVS P F AVG, helmeted & cuirassed bust right, holding spear & shield; Reverse: VOT X MVLT XX in four lines within wreath; CONSPB in exergue; Attractive green patina. Ex Nemesis.


De Imperatoribus Romanis,
An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Emperors

Julian the Apostate (360-363 A.D.)

Walter E. Roberts, Emory University
Michael DiMaio, Jr., Salve Regina University

Introduction

The emperor Flavius Claudius Julianus reigned from 360 to 26 June 363, when he was killed fighting against the Persians. Despite his short rule, his emperorship was pivotal in the development of the history of the later Roman empire. This essay is not meant to be a comprehensive look at the various issues central to the reign of Julian and the history of the later empire. Rather, this short work is meant to be a brief history and introduction for the general reader. Julian was the last direct descendent of the Constantinian line to ascend to the purple, and it is one of history's great ironies that he was the last non-Christian emperor. As such, he has been vilified by most Christian sources, beginning with John Chrysostom and Gregory Nazianzus in the later fourth century. This tradition was picked up by the fifth century Eusebian continuators Sozomen, Socrates Scholasticus, and Theodoret and passed on to scholars down through the 20th century. Most contemporary sources, however, paint a much more balanced picture of Julian and his reign. The adoption of Christianity by emperors and society, while still a vital concern, was but one of several issues that concerned Julian.

It is fortunate that extensive writings from Julian himself exist, which help interpret his reign in the light of contemporary evidence. Still extant are some letters, several panegyrics, and a few satires. Other contemporary sources include the soldier Ammianus Marcellinus' history, correspondence between Julian and Libanius of Antioch, several panegyrics, laws from the Theodosian Code, inscriptions, and coinage. These sources show Julian's emphasis on restoration. He saw himself as the restorer of the traditional values of Roman society. Of course much of this was rhetoric, meant to defend Julian against charges that he was a usurper. At the same time this theme of restoration was central to all emperors of the fourth century. Julian thought that he was the one emperor who could regain what was viewed as the lost glory of the Roman empire. To achieve this goal he courted select groups of social elites to get across his message of restoration. This was the way that emperors functioned in the fourth century. By choosing whom to include in the sharing of power, they sought to shape society.

Early Life

Julian was born at Constantinople in 331. His father was Julius Constantius, half-brother of the emperor Constantine through Constantius Chlorus, and his mother was Basilina, Julius' second wife. Julian had two half-brothers via Julius' first marriage. One of these was Gallus, who played a major role in Julian's life. Julian appeared destined for a bright future via his father's connection to the Constantinian house. After many years of tense relations with his three half-brothers, Constantine seemed to have welcomed them into the fold of the imperial family. From 333 to 335, Constantine conferred a series of honors upon his three half-siblings, including appointing Julius Constantius as one of the consuls for 335. Julian's mother was equally distinguished. Ammianus related that she was from a noble family. This is supported by Libanius, who claimed that she was the daughter of Julius Julianus, a Praetorian Prefect under Licinius, who was such a model of administrative virtue that he was pardoned and honored by Constantine.

Despite the fact that his mother died shortly after giving birth to him, Julian experienced an idyllic early childhood. This ended when Constantius II conducted a purge of many of his relatives shortly after Constantine's death in 337, particularly targeting the families of Constantine's half-brothers. ulian and Gallus were spared, probably due to their young age. Julian was put under the care of Mardonius, a Scythian eunuch who had tutored his mother, in 339, and was raised in the Greek philosophical tradition, and probably lived in Nicomedia. Ammianus also supplied the fact that while in Nicomedia, Julian was cared for by the local bishop Eusebius, of whom the future emperor was a distant relation. Julian was educated by some of the most famous names in grammar and rhetoric in the Greek world at that time, including Nicocles and Hecebolius. In 344 Constantius II sent Julian and Gallus to Macellum in Cappadocia, where they remained for six years. In 351, Gallus was made Caesar by Constantius II and Julian was allowed to return to Nicomedia, where he studied under Aedesius, Eusebius, and Chrysanthius, all famed philosophers, and was exposed to the Neo-Platonism that would become such a prominent part of his life. But Julian was most proud of the time he spent studying under Maximus of Ephesus, a noted Neo-Platonic philospher and theurgist. It was Maximus who completed Julian's full-scale conversion to Neo-Platonism. Later, when he was Caesar, Julian told of how he put letters from this philosopher under his pillows so that he would continue to absorb wisdom while he slept, and while campaigning on the Rhine, he sent his speeches to Maximus for approval before letting others hear them. When Gallus was executed in 354 for treason by Constantius II, Julian was summoned to Italy and essentially kept under house arrest at Comum, near Milan, for seven months before Constantius' wife Eusebia convinced the emperor that Julian posed no threat. This allowed Julian to return to Greece and continue his life as a scholar where he studied under the Neo-Platonist Priscus. Julian's life of scholarly pursuit, however, ended abruptly when he was summoned to the imperial court and made Caesar by Constantius II on 6 November 355.

Julian as Caesar

Constantius II realized an essential truth of the empire that had been evident since the time of the Tetrarchy--the empire was too big to be ruled effectively by one man. Julian was pressed into service as Caesar, or subordinate emperor, because an imperial presence was needed in the west, in particular in the Gallic provinces. Julian, due to the emperor's earlier purges, was the only viable candidate of the imperial family left who could act as Caesar. Constantius enjoined Julian with the task of restoring order along the Rhine frontier. A few days after he was made Caesar, Julian was married to Constantius' sister Helena in order to cement the alliance between the two men. On 1 December 355, Julian journeyed north, and in Augusta Taurinorum he learned that Alamannic raiders had destroyed Colonia Agrippina. He then proceeded to Vienne where he spent the winter. At Vienne, he learned that Augustudunum was also under siege, but was being held by a veteran garrison. He made this his first priority, and arrived there on 24 June 356. When he had assured himself that the city was in no immediate danger, he journeyed to Augusta Treverorum via Autessioduram, and from there to Durocortorum where he rendezvoused with his army. Julian had the army stage a series of punitive strikes around the Dieuse region, and then he moved them towards the Argentoratum/Mongontiacum region when word of barbarian incursions reached him.

From there, Julian moved on to Colonia Agrippina, and negotiated a peace with the local barbarian leaders who had assaulted the city. He then wintered at Senonae. He spent the early part of the campaigning season of 357 fighting off besiegers at Senonae, and then conducting operations around Lugdunum and Tres Tabernae. Later that summer, he encountered his watershed moment as a military general. Ammianus went into great detail about Julian's victory over seven rogue Alamannic chieftains near Argentoratum, and Julian himself bragged about it in his later writing. After this battle, the soldiers acclaimed Julian Augustus, but he rejected this title. After mounting a series of follow-up raids into Alamannic territory, he retired to winter quarters at Lutetia, and on the way defeated some Frankish raiders in the Mosa region. Julian considered this campaign one of the major events of his time as Caesar.

Julian began his 358 military campaigns early, hoping to catch the barbarians by surprise. His first target was the Franks in the northern Rhine region. He then proceeded to restore some forts in the Mosa region, but his soldiers threatened to mutiny because they were on short rations and had not been paid their donative since Julian had become Caesar. After he soothed his soldiers, Julian spent the rest of the summer negotiating a peace with various Alamannic leaders in the mid and lower Rhine areas, and retired to winter quarters at Lutetia. In 359, he prepared once again to carry out a series of punitive expeditions against the Alamanni in the Rhine region who were still hostile to the Roman presence. In preparation, the Caesar repopulated seven previously destroyed cities and set them up as supply bases and staging areas. This was done with the help of the people with whom Julian had negotiated a peace the year before. Julian then had a detachment of lightly armed soldiers cross the Rhine near Mogontiacum and conduct a guerilla strike against several chieftains. As a result of these campaigns, Julian was able to negotiate a peace with all but a handful of the Alamannic leaders, and he retired to winter quarters at Lutetia.

Of course, Julian did more than act as a general during his time as Caesar. According to Ammianus, Julian was an able administrator who took steps to correct the injustices of Constantius' appointees. Ammianus related the story of how Julian prevented Florentius, the Praetorian Prefect of Gaul, from raising taxes, and also how Julian actually took over as governor for the province of Belgica Secunda. Hilary, bishop of Poitiers, supported Ammianus' basic assessment of Julian in this regard when he reported that Julian was an able representative of the emperor to the Gallic provincials. There is also epigraphic evidence to support Julian's popularity amongst the provincial elites. An inscription found near Beneventum in Apulia reads:
"To Flavius Claudius Julianus, most noble and sanctified Caesar, from the caring Tocius Maximus, vir clarissimus, for the care of the res publica from Beneventum".

Tocius Maximus, as a vir clarissimus, was at the highest point in the social spectrum and was a leader in his local community. This inscription shows that Julian was successful in establishing a positive image amongst provincial elites while he was Caesar.

Julian Augustus

In early 360, Constantius, driven by jealousy of Julian's success, stripped Julian of many troops and officers, ostensibly because the emperor needed them for his upcoming campaign against the Persians. One of the legions ordered east, the Petulantes, did not want to leave Gaul because the majority of the soldiers in the unit were from this region. As a result they mutinied and hailed Julian as Augustus at Lutetia. Julian refused this acclamation as he had done at Argentoratum earlier, but the soldiers would have none of his denial. They raised him on a shield and adorned him with a neck chain, which had formerly been the possession of the standard-bearer of the Petulantes and symbolized a royal diadem. Julian appeared reluctantly to acquiesce to their wishes, and promised a generous donative. The exact date of his acclamation is unknown, but most scholars put it in February or March. Julian himself supported Ammianus' picture of a jealous Constantius. In his Letter to the Athenians, a document constructed to answer charges that he was a usurper, Julian stated that from the start he, as Caesar, had been meant as a figurehead to the soldiers and provincials. The real power he claimed lay with the generals and officials already present in Gaul. In fact, according to Julian, the generals were charged with watching him as much as the enemy. His account of the actual acclamation closely followed what Ammianus told us, but he stressed even more his reluctance to take power. Julian claimed that he did so only after praying to Zeus for guidance.

Fearing the reaction of Constantius, Julian sent a letter to his fellow emperor justifying the events at Lutetia and trying to arrange a peaceful solution. This letter berated Constantius for forcing the troops in Gaul into an untenable situation. Ammianus stated that Julian's letter blamed Constantius' decision to transfer Gallic legions east as the reason for the soldiers' rebellion. Julian once again asserted that he was an unwilling participant who was only following the desire of the soldiers. In both of these basic accounts Ammianus and Julian are playing upon the theme of restoration. Implicit in their version of Julian's acclamation is the argument that Constantius was unfit to rule. The soldiers were the vehicle of the gods' will. The Letter to the Athenians is full of references to the fact that Julian was assuming the mantle of Augustus at the instigation of the gods. Ammianus summed up this position nicely when he related the story of how, when Julian was agonizing over whether to accept the soldiers' acclamation, he had a dream in which he was visited by the Genius (guardian spirit) of the Roman state. The Genius told Julian that it had often tried to bestow high honors upon Julian but had been rebuffed. Now, the Genius went on to say, was Julian's final chance to take the power that was rightfully his. If the Caesar refused this chance, the Genius would depart forever, and both Julian and the state would rue Julian's rejection. Julian himself wrote a letter to his friend Maximus of Ephesus in November of 361 detailing his thoughts on his proclamation. In this letter, Julian stated that the soldiers proclaimed him Augustus against his will. Julian, however, defended his accession, saying that the gods willed it and that he had treated his enemies with clemency and justice. He went on to say that he led the troops in propitiating the traditional deities, because the gods commanded him to return to the traditional rites, and would reward him if he fulfilled this duty.

During 360 an uneasy peace simmered between the two emperors. Julian spent the 360 campaigning season continuing his efforts to restore order along the Rhine, while Constantius continued operations against the Persians. Julian wintered in Vienne, and celebrated his Quinquennalia. It was at this time that his wife Helena died, and he sent her remains to Rome for a proper burial at his family villa on the Via Nomentana where the body of her sister was entombed. The uneasy peace held through the summer of 361, but Julian concentrated his military operations around harassing the Alamannic chieftain Vadomarius and his allies, who had concluded a peace treaty with Constantius some years earlier. By the end of the summer, Julian decided to put an end to the waiting and gathered his army to march east against Constantius. The empire teetered on the brink of another civil war. Constantius had spent the summer negotiating with the Persians and making preparations for possible military action against his cousin. When he was assured that the Persians would not attack, he summoned his army and sallied forth to meet Julian. As the armies drew inexorably closer to one another, the empire was saved from another bloody civil war when Constantius died unexpectedly of natural causes on 3 November near the town of Mopsucrenae in Cilicia, naming Julian -- the sources say-- as his legitimate successor.

Julian was in Dacia when he learned of his cousin's death. He made his way through Thrace and came to Constantinople on 11 December 361 where Julian honored the emperor with the funeral rites appropriate for a man of his station. Julian immediately set about putting his supporters in positions of power and trimming the imperial bureaucracy, which had become extremely overstaffed during Constantius' reign. Cooks and barbers had increased during the late emperor's reign and Julian expelled them from his court. Ammianus gave a mixed assessment of how the new emperor handled the followers of Constantius. Traditionally, emperors were supposed to show clemency to the supporters of a defeated enemy. Julian, however, gave some men over to death to appease the army. Ammianus used the case of Ursulus, Constantius' comes sacrum largitionum, to illustrate his point. Ursulus had actually tried to acquire money for the Gallic troops when Julian had first been appointed Caesar, but he had also made a disparaging remark about the ineffectiveness of the army after the battle of Amida. The soldiers remembered this, and when Julian became sole Augustus, they demanded Ursulus' head. Julian obliged, much to the disapproval of Ammianus. This seems to be a case of Julian courting the favor of the military leadership, and is indicative of a pattern in which Julian courted the goodwill of various societal elites to legitimize his position as emperor.

Another case in point is the officials who made up the imperial bureaucracy. Many of them were subjected to trial and punishment. To achieve this goal, during the last weeks of December 361 Julian assembled a military tribunal at Chalcedon, empanelling six judges to try the cases. The president of the tribunal was Salutius, just promoted to the rank of Praetorian Prefect; the five other members were Mamertinus, the orator, and four general officers: Jovinus, Agilo, Nevitta, and Arbetio. Relative to the proceedings of the tribunal, Ammianus noted that the judges, " . . . oversaw the cases more vehemently than was right or fair, with the exception of a few . . .." Ammianus' account of Julian's attempt at reform of the imperial bureaucracy is supported by legal evidence from the Theodosian Code. A series of laws sent to Mamertinus, Julian's appointee as Praetorian Prefect in Italy, Illyricum, and Africa, illustrate this point nicely. On 6 June 362, Mamertinus received a law that prohibited provincial governors from bypassing the Vicars when giving their reports to the Prefect. Traditionally, Vicars were given civil authority over a group of provinces, and were in theory meant to serve as a middle step between governors and Prefects. This law suggests that the Vicars were being left out, at least in Illyricum. Julian issued another edict to Mamertinus on 22 February 362 to stop abuse of the public post by governors. According to this law, only Mamertinus could issue post warrants, but the Vicars were given twelve blank warrants to be used as they saw fit, and each governor was given two. Continuing the trend of bureaucratic reform, Julian also imposed penalties on governors who purposefully delayed appeals in court cases they had heard. The emperor also established a new official to weigh solidi used in official government transactions to combat coin clipping.

For Julian, reigning in the abuses of imperial bureaucrats was one step in restoring the prestige of the office of emperor. Because he could not affect all elements of society personally, Julian, like other Neo-Flavian emperors, decided to concentrate on select groups of societal elites as intercessors between himself and the general populace. One of these groups was the imperial bureaucracy. Julian made it very clear that imperial officials were intercessors in a very real sense in a letter to Alypius, Vicar of Britain. In this letter, sent from Gaul sometime before 361, the emperor praises Alypius for his use of "mildness and moderation with courage and force" in his rule of the provincials. Such virtues were characteristic of the emperors, and it was good that Alypius is representing Julian in this way. Julian courted the army because it put him in power. Another group he sought to include in his rule was the traditional Senatorial aristocracy. One of his first appointments as consul was Claudius Mamertinus, a Gallic Senator and rhetorician. Mamertinus' speech in praise of Julian delivered at Constantinople in January of 362 is preserved. In this speech, Claudius presented his consular selection as inaugurating a new golden age and Julian as the restorer of the empire founded by Augustus. The image Mamertinus gave of his own consulate inaugurating a new golden age is not merely formulaic. The comparison of Julian to Augustus has very real, if implicit, relevance to Claudius' situation. Claudius emphasized the imperial period as the true age of renewal. Augustus ushered in a new era with his formation of a partnership between the emperor and the Senate based upon a series of honors and offices bestowed upon the Senate in return for their role as intercessor between emperor and populace. It was this system that Julian was restoring, and the consulate was one concrete example of this bond. To be chosen as a consul by the emperor, who himself had been divinely mandated, was a divine honor. In addition to being named consul, Mamertinus went on to hold several offices under Julian, including the Prefecture of Italy, Illyricum, and Africa. Similarly, inscriptional evidence illustrates a link between municipal elites and Julian during his time as Caesar, something which continued after he became emperor. One concrete example comes from the municipal senate of Aceruntia in Apulia, which established a monument on which Julian is styled as "Repairer of the World."

Julian seems to have given up actual Christian belief before his acclamation as emperor and was a practitioner of more traditional Greco-Roman religious beliefs, in particular, a follower of certain late antique Platonist philosophers who were especially adept at theurgy as was noted earlier. In fact Julian himself spoke of his conversion to Neo-Platonism in a letter to the Alexandrians written in 363. He stated that he had abandoned Christianity when he was twenty years old and been an adherent of the traditional Greco-Roman deities for the twelve years prior to writing this letter.

(For the complete text of this article see: http://www.roman-emperors.org/julian.htm)

Julian’s Persian Campaign

The exact goals Julian had for his ill-fated Persian campaign were never clear. The Sassanid Persians, and before them the Parthians, had been a traditional enemy from the time of the Late Republic, and indeed Constantius had been conducting a war against them before Julian's accession forced the former to forge an uneasy peace. Julian, however, had no concrete reason to reopen hostilities in the east. Socrates Scholasticus attributed Julian's motives to imitation of Alexander the Great, but perhaps the real reason lay in his need to gather the support of the army. Despite his acclamation by the Gallic legions, relations between Julian and the top military officers was uneasy at best. A war against the Persians would have brought prestige and power both to Julian and the army.

Julian set out on his fateful campaign on 5 March 363. Using his trademark strategy of striking quickly and where least expected, he moved his army through Heirapolis and from there speedily across the Euphrates and into the province of Mesopotamia, where he stopped at the town of Batnae. His plan was to eventually return through Armenia and winter in Tarsus. Once in Mesopotamia, Julian was faced with the decision of whether to travel south through the province of Babylonia or cross the Tigris into Assyria, and he eventually decided to move south through Babylonia and turn west into Assyria at a later date. By 27 March, he had the bulk of his army across the Euphrates, and had also arranged a flotilla to guard his supply line along the mighty river. He then left his generals Procopius and Sebastianus to help Arsacius, the king of Armenia and a Roman client, to guard the northern Tigris line. It was also during this time that he received the surrender of many prominent local leaders who had nominally supported the Persians. These men supplied Julian with money and troops for further military action against their former masters. Julian decided to turn south into Babylonia and proceeded along the Euphrates, coming to the fortress of Cercusium at the junction of the Abora and Euphrates Rivers around the first of April, and from there he took his army west to a region called Zaitha near the abandoned town of Dura where they visited the tomb of the emperor Gordian which was in the area. On April 7 he set out from there into the heart of Babylonia and towards Assyria.

Ammianus then stated that Julian and his army crossed into Assyria, which on the face of things appears very confusing. Julian still seems to be operating within the province of Babylonia between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers. The confusion is alleviated when one realizes that,for Ammianus, the region of Assyria encompassed the provinces of Babylonia and Assyria. On their march, Julian's forces took the fortress of Anatha, received the surrender and support of several more local princes, and ravaged the countryside of Assyria between the rivers. As the army continued south, they came across the fortresses Thilutha and Achaiachala, but these places were too well defended and Julian decided to leave them alone. Further south were the cities Diacira and Ozogardana, which the Roman forces sacked and burned. Soon, Julian came to Pirisabora and a brief siege ensued, but the city fell and was also looted and destroyed. It was also at this time that the Roman army met its first systematic resistance from the Persians. As the Romans penetrated further south and west, the local inhabitants began to flood their route. Nevertheless, the Roman forces pressed on and came to Maiozamalcha, a sizable city not far from Ctesiphon. After a short siege, this city too fell to Julian. Inexorably, Julian's forces zeroed in on Ctesiphon, but as they drew closer, the Persian resistance grew fiercer, with guerilla raids whittling at Julian's men and supplies. A sizable force of the army was lost and the emperor himself was almost killed taking a fort a few miles from the target city.
Finally, the army approached Ctesiphon following a canal that linked the Tigris and Euphrates. It soon became apparent after a few preliminary skirmishes that a protracted siege would be necessary to take this important city. Many of his generals, however, thought that pursuing this course of action would be foolish. Julian reluctantly agreed, but became enraged by this failure and ordered his fleet to be burned as he decided to march through the province of Assyria. Julian had planned for his army to live off the land, but the Persians employed a scorched-earth policy. When it became apparent that his army would perish (because his supplies were beginning to dwindle) from starvation and the heat if he continued his campaign, and also in the face of superior numbers of the enemy, Julian ordered a retreat on 16 June. As the Roman army retreated, they were constantly harassed by guerilla strikes. It was during one of these raids that Julian got caught up in the fighting and took a spear to his abdomen. Mortally wounded he was carried to his tent, where, after conferring with some of his officers, he died. The date was 26 June 363.

Conclusion

Thus an ignominious end for a man came about who had hoped to restore the glory of the Roman empire during his reign as emperor. Due to his intense hatred of Christianity, the opinion of posterity has not been kind to Julian. The contemporary opinion, however, was overall positive. The evidence shows that Julian was a complex ruler with a definite agenda to use traditional social institutions in order to revive what he saw as a collapsing empire. In the final assessment, he was not so different from any of the other emperors of the fourth century. He was a man grasping desperately to hang on to a Greco-Roman conception of leadership that was undergoing a subtle yet profound change.
Copyright (C) 2002, Walter E. Roberts and Michael DiMaio, Jr. Used by permission.

In reality, Julian worked to promote culture and philosophy in any manifestation. He tried to reduce taxes and the public debts of municipalities; he augmented administrative decentralisation; he promoted a campaign of austerity to reduce public expenditure (setting himself as the example). He reformed the postal service and eliminated the powerful secret police.
by Federico Morando; JULIAN II, The Apostate, http://www.forumancientcoins.com/NumisWiki/view.asp?key=Julian%20II

Flavius Claudius Iulianus was born in 331 or maybe 332 A.D. in Constantinople. He ruled the Western Empire as Caesar from 355 to 360 and was hailed Augustus by his legions in Lutetia (Paris) in 360. Julian was a gifted administrator and military strategist. Famed as the last pagan emperor, his reinstatement of the pagan religion earned him the moniker "the Apostate." As evidenced by his brilliant writing, some of which has survived to the present day, the title "the Philosopher" may have been more appropriate. He died from wounds suffered during the Persian campaign of 363 A.D. Joseph Sermarini, FORVM.

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.




2 commentsCleisthenes
RI_141br_img.jpg
141 - Diocletian - Follis - RIC VI Trier 677a (corr. Cyzicus)70 viewsObv:– D N DIOCLETIANO FELICISSIMO SEN AVG, laureate bust right in imperial mantle, olive branch in right hand, mappa in left
Rev:– PROVIDENTIA DEORVM QVIES AVGG, Providentia standing right, extending right hand to Quies standing left, branch upward in right hand, vertical sceptre in left
Minted in Cyzicus (not Trier) ( S | F / KS //PTR)
Reference:– RIC VI Trier 677a (R) (see notes)
Notes:- This is perhaps one of the most unusual issues in the entire follis series. It is nearly always attributed to Trier (Treveri), but a comparison of portrait styles and an examination of follis hoards reveals that this issue was not struck in Trier but in Cyzicus. Two officinae struck this issue, and the KS in the field between the two figures is actually the mintmark, not the PTR. A look at the coins of Cyzicus (RIC 22-23) shows that the same two officinae struck this issue without the PTR also. The Senior Augustus issues of Diocletian and Maximianus were struck at every mint currently in operation. Apparently, the first coins of this type were prepared at Trier and examples were sent to the various mints for the individual mints to copy. At Cyzicus, the die engravers copied everything, including the Trier mintmark and put their own mintmark in the field. Eventually someone soon realized the mistake and new dies were prepared with the mintmark in its proper location.

Nicely silvered with little / no visible wear.
maridvnvm
jovian.jpg
1410a, Jovian, 27 June 363 - 17 February 364 A.D.78 viewsBronze AE 3, RIC 179, aVF, Constantinople, 3.126g, 21.6mm, 180o. Obverse: D N IOVIANVS P F AVG, pearl diademed, draped and cuirassed bust left; Reverse: VOT V MVLT X within wreath, CONSPG in exergue; scarce.

Flavius Jovianuswas born in 331 at Singidunum, modern Belgrade. His distinguished father, Varronianus, had been a tribune of the legion Ioviani and a comes domesticorum, perhaps under Constantius II, who had retired to private life shortly before Jovian's elevation to the purple. Jovian married a daughter of Lucillianus, perhaps named Charito, and by her produced at least two children.

Jovian himself was a protector domesticus under Constantius II and Julian and, under Julian, primicerius domesticorum. Various Christian sources maintain that Jovian's Christianity led to his deposition by Julian, though most modern scholars dismiss this as ex post facto Christian apologetic. Jovian, recalled to the ranks if he had ever been dismissed, marched with Julian against Sapor in 363, and on 27 June, the day after that emperor's death, was acclaimed Augustus.

Ammianus and Zosimus, among others, detail the difficult straits of the Roman army during its withdrawal from Persian territory, Ammianus from the perspective of a proud soldier confident even in defeat of the superiority of Roman arms, Zosimus, in a much shorter and confused version, concentrating on the predicament of Jovian's troops and on the dire effects to the empire of the peace terms agreed to with Sapor. These terms entailed the cessation to Persia of Roman territory beyond the Tigris -- the cities of Singara and Nisibis, however, to be surrendered on the condition of the safe passage of their inhabitants -- and the guarantee of the neutrality of Rome's ally Arsaces, King of Armenia, in the event of future hostilities between Roman and Persia. Ammianus asserts that in agreeing to these terms Jovian misjudged his tactical strength and wasted an opportunity presented by negotiations with Sapor to move his forces closer to supplies at Corduena, and that Jovian acted on the advise of flatterers to preserve the fighting strength of his forces in the event of an attempt by Julian's relative Procopius to seize the throne. Others present the treaty terms as unavoidable given the Roman predicament.

Jovian appears to have treaded cautiously with regard to religious matters during the early months of his reign. Eunapius says that Jovian continued to honor Maximus and Priscus, the Neoplatonist advisors of Julian, and, upon reaching Tarsus, Jovian performed funeral rites for Julian. Nonetheless, various Christians, most notably Athanasius, took the initiative in an effort to gain Jovian's favor and support. An adherent of the Nicaean creed, Jovian did eventually recall various bishops of homoousian disposition and restore to their followers churches lost under earlier emperors. But in spite of such measures, unity among various Christian sects seems to have been the foremost concern of Jovian, whose ipsissima verba Socrates Scholasticus purports to give: "I abhor contentiousness, but love and honor those hurrying towards unanimity" (Hist. Eccl. 3.25).

Jovian died at the age of thirty-two on 17 February 364 at Dadastana on the boundary of Bithynia and Galatia. The cause of his death was most probably natural and is variously attributed to overeating, the consumption of poisonous mushrooms, or suffocation from fumes of charcoal or of the fresh paint on the room in which he was sleeping. Ammianus' comparison of the circumstances of Jovian's death to those of Scipio Aemilianus suggest the possibility of foul play, as does John of Antioch's reference to a poisoned rather than a poisonous mushroom, while John Chrysostom -- in a highly suspect literary context of consolatio-- asserts outright that the emperor was murdered. Eutropius records that he was enrolled among the gods, inter Divos relatus est. Zonaras says he was buried in the Church of the Holy Apostles and that his wife, Charito, was eventually laid to rest beside him.

Ancient authors agree that Jovian was of modest intellect but imposing physique and disposed to excessive eating and drinking.

By Thomas Banchich, Canisius College
Published: De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families http://www.roman-emperors.org/startup.htm. Used by permission.

Edited By J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.

Cleisthenes
Henry_VI_AR_Halfpenny.JPG
1422 - 1461, HENRY VI (First Reign), AR Halfpenny, Struck 1430 - 1434 at Calais, France30 viewsObverse: HENRICVS (pinecone) REX (mascle) ANGL. Crowned facing bust of Henry VI within circle of pellets. Mintmark: Cross patonce in legend.
Reverse: VIL(mascle)LA CALISIE (pinecone). Long cross pattée dividing legend around inner circle of pellets into quarters, trefoil in each quarter of circle.
Diameter: 15mm | Weight: 0.45gms
SPINK: 1885

This issue of coins is known as the pinecone-mascle issue because these symbols are incorporated in the obverse and reverse legends. This issue was struck between 1430 and 1434 at the mints of London and Calais.

Henry VI was King of England from 1422 to 1461 and again from 1470 to 1471. The only child of Henry V, he succeeded to the English throne at the age of nine months when his father died.
This was during the period of the long-running Hundred Years' War (1337–1453) and Henry is the only English monarch to also have been crowned King of France (as Henri II), in 1431. During his early reign several people were ruling for him and by the time Henry was declared fit to rule in 1437 he found his realm in a difficult position, faced with setbacks in France and divisions among the nobility at home. Henry is described as timid, shy, passive, well-intentioned, and averse to warfare and violence; he was also at times mentally unstable. Partially in the hope of achieving peace, Henry married the ambitious and strong-willed Margaret of Anjou in 1445. The peace policy failed and the war recommenced with France taking the upper hand such that by 1453 Calais was Henry's only remaining territory on the continent.
With Henry effectively unfit to rule, Queen Margaret took advantage of the situation to make herself an effective power behind the throne. Starting around 1453 Henry began suffering a series of mental breakdowns and tensions mounted between Margaret and Richard of York, not only over control of the incapacitated king's government, but over the question of succession to the throne. Civil war broke out in 1459, leading to a long period of dynastic conflict, now known as the Wars of the Roses. Henry was deposed on 29th March 1461 after a crushing defeat at the Battle of Towton by Richard of York's son, who took the throne as Edward IV. Margaret continuing to resist Edward, but Henry was captured by Edward's forces in 1465 and imprisoned in the Tower of London.
Queen Margaret, who was first exiled in Scotland and then in France, was still determined to win back the throne on behalf of her husband and son. So, when Edward IV fell out with two of his main supporters, Richard Neville the Earl of Warwick and George the Duke of Clarence, Margaret formed a secret alliance with them backed by Louis XI of France. Warwick returned with an army to England, forced Edward IV into exile, and restored Henry VI to the throne on 30th October 1470, though Henry's position was nominal as Warwick and Clarence effectively ruled in his name.
But Henry's return to the throne lasted less than six months. Warwick overreached himself by declaring war on Burgundy, whose ruler responded by giving Edward IV the assistance he needed to win back his throne by force. Edward retook power in 1471, killing Warwick at the Battle of Barnet and Henry's only son at the Battle of Tewkesbury. Henry was again imprisoned in the Tower where, during the night of 21st May he died, possibly killed on Edward's orders.
2 comments*Alex
RI 146ae img.jpg
146 - Maximianus - RIC V pt II 396 Bust Type F22 viewsObv:– IMP C MAXIMIANVS P F AVG, Radiate cuirassed bust right
Rev:– PAX AVGG, Pax standing left, with Victory on globe and scepter
Minted in Lugdunum (S in exe.). Emission 6, Officina 2. Autumn A.D. 289 – Early A.D. 290
References:– RIC V Part 2 396 Bust Type F. Bastien Volume VII 277
maridvnvm
RI 146by img.jpg
146 - Maximianus - RIC V pt II 396 Bust Type F13 viewsObv:– IMP C MAXIMIANVS P F AVG, Radiate cuirassed bust right
Rev:– PAX AVGG, Pax standing left, with Victory on globe and scepter
Minted in Lugdunum (S in exe.). Emission 6, Officina 2. Autumn A.D. 289 – Early A.D. 290
References:– RIC V Part 2 396 Bust Type F. Bastien Volume VII 277
maridvnvm
RI 146x img.jpg
146 - Maximianus - RIC V pt II 399 Bust Type F14 viewsObv:– IMP MAXIMIANVS AVG, Radiate cuirassed bust right
Rev:– PAX AVGG Pax standing left, with Victory on globe and scepter
Minted in Lugdunum (S in exe.). Emission 6, Officina 2. Autumn A.D. 289 – Early A.D. 290
References:– RIC V Part 2 399 Bust Type F. Bastien Volume VII 285
maridvnvm
RI 146bd img.jpg
146 - Maximianus - RIC V pt II 422 var Bust Type H10 viewsObv:– IMP MAXIMIANVS AVG, Radiate bust left in imperial mantle, holding eagle tipped sceptre
Rev:– SALVS AVGG, Salus standing right, feeding snake from patera
Minted in Lugdunum (T in exe.). Emission 6, Officina 3. Autumn A.D. 289 to Early A.D. 290
References:– RIC V Part 2 422 Bust Type H. Bastien Volume VII 297 (8 examples cited)
maridvnvm
RI 146f img.jpg
146 - Maximianus - RIC VI Serdica 3b34 viewsObv:– IMP C M A MAXIMIANVS P F AVG, Laureate bust facing right
Rev:– GENIO POPVLI ROMANI, Genius standing left, holding patera and cornucopiae
Minted in Serdica (Δ in right field, •SM•SD• in exe.), A.D. 303 – 305
References:– RIC VI Serdica 3b

Nearly fully silvered.
maridvnvm
RI 146g img.jpg
146 - Maximianus - RIC VI Trier 16589 viewsObv:– IMP C MAXIMIANVS P AVG, Laureate bust facing right
Rev:– GENIO POPVLI ROMANI, Genius standing left, holding patera and cornucopiae
Minted in Trier (A in left field, Γ in right field, TR in exe.) A.D. 296 - 297
References:– RIC VI Trier 165 (Rare)

Nearly fully silvered
2 commentsmaridvnvm
RI_146cl_img.jpg
146 - Maximianus Herculius - Follis - RIC VI Cyzicus 23b 35 viewsObv:– D N MAXIMIANO FELICISSIMO SEN AVG, laureate bust right in imperial mantle, olive branch in right hand, mappa in left
Rev:– PROVIDENTIA DEORVM QVIES AVGG, Providentia standing right, extending right hand to Quies standing left, branch upward in right hand, vertical sceptre in left
Minted in Cyzicus (S | F // KD). A.D. 305-306
Reference:- RIC VI Cyzicus 23b (Scarce)

Nice condition and nearly fully silvered.
1 commentsmaridvnvm
RI_146dr_img.jpg
146 - Maximianus Herculius - RIC VI Antioch 112c34 viewsFollis
Obv:– IMP C M AVR VAL MAXIMIANVS P F AVG, Laureate, draped and cuirassed bust right
Rev:– GENIO IMP-ERATORIS, Genius standing left holding patera and cornucopia
Minted in Antioch (_ | Theta / E //ANT Dot). Early to Later A.D. 309
Reference:– RIC VI Antioch 112c (R) (Citing Oxford; Apparently a rare issue for Maximianus Herculius and only issued from this officina)
 
6.39 gms. 26.19 mm. 0 degrees. Better than the RIC plate coin (reverse only illustrated).
 
From RIC Notes "A very remarkable innovation, peculiar to this issue, is the reappearance of Herculius (with the long legend Imp C M Aur Val Maximianus P F Aug matching those of Galerius and Licinus, and with cuirassed bust) on rare coins with Genio Imperatoris; this is parallelled at the same time (see RIC VI page 656). Expelled from Italy c. April 308, and rejected at the Carnuntum conference in November 308, Herculius had received ample share in the coinage of Constantine's mints, and it seems that Maximinus (now antagonisitc to both Galerius and Licinius) may have been momentarily willing to demontsrate his hostility by including the name of the man who might still play and anti-Galerian part in the west."
2 commentsmaridvnvm
RI_147ac_img.jpg
147 - Constantius Chlorus - AE Follis - RIC VI Lugdunum 187a13 viewsAE Follis
Obv:– IMP CONSTANTIVS AVG, Laureate, cuirassed bust left
Rev:– GENIO POP-VLI ROMANI, Genius standing left, modius on head, naked but for chalmys over left shoulder, right holding patera over altar, left cornucopia
Minted in Lugdunum (_ | * / PLG). May A.D. 305 to Early A.D. 307 (Bastien 1st May A.D. 305 – 25th July A.D 306)
Reference:– Bastien XI 369 iii (71). RIC VI Lugdunum 187a.

Somewhat overcleaned. Let's see what it looks like in a few years time when nature has had some time to work on it.
maridvnvm
Edward_IV_AR_Groat_London.JPG
1471 - 1483, EDWARD IV (Second Reign), AR Groat, Struck 1477 - 1480 at London, England24 viewsObverse: EDWARD DEI GRA REX ANGL (Z FRANC +). Crowned bust of Edward IV facing within tressure of arches, trefoils on cusps, all within beaded circle. Small crosses in spaces between words in legend. Mintmark, off-flan, pierced cross.
Reverse: POSVI DEVM ADIVTORE MEVM +/ CIVITAS LONDON. Long cross dividing two concentric legends separated by two beaded circles into quarters, trefoil in each quarter of inner circle. Mintmark, pierced cross, small crosses between words in outer legend.
Diameter: 25mm | Weight: 2.7gms | Die Axis: 11
SPINK: 2096 var. (DEI rather than DI in obverse legend)

Edward IV was King of England from March 1461 to October 1470, and again from April 1471 until his sudden death in 1483. He was the first Yorkist King of England. The first half of his rule was marred by the violence associated with the Wars of the Roses, but he overcame the Lancastrian challenge to the throne at Tewkesbury in 1471 and there were no further rebellions in England during the rest of his reign.
In 1475, Edward declared war on France, landing at Calais in June. However, his ally Charles the Bold, Duke of Burgundy, failed to provide any significant military assistance leading Edward to undertake negotiations with the French, with whom he came to terms under the Treaty of Picquigny. France provided him with an immediate payment of 75,000 crowns and a yearly pension of 50,000 crowns, thus allowing him to "recoup his finances.” Edward also backed an attempt by Alexander Stewart, 1st Duke of Albany and brother of King James III of Scotland, to take the Scottish throne in 1482. Edward's younger brother, the Duke of Gloucester (and future King Richard III) led an invasion of Scotland that resulted in the capture of Edinburgh and the Scottish king himself. Alexander Stewart, however, reneged on his agreement with Edward. The Duke of Gloucester then withdrew from his position in Edinburgh, though he did retain Berwick-upon-Tweed.
Edward became subject to an increasing number of ailments when his health began to fail and he fell fatally ill at Easter in 1483. He survived long enough though to add some codicils to his will, the most important being to name his brother Richard, Duke of Gloucester as Protector after his death. He died on 9th April 1483 and was buried in St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle. He was succeeded first by his twelve-year-old son Edward V of England, who was never crowned, and then by his brother who reigned as Richard III.
It is not known what actually caused Edward's death. Pneumonia, typhoid and poison have all been conjectured, but some have attributed his death to an unhealthy lifestyle because he had become stout and inactive in the years before his death.
2 comments*Alex
RI_148ai_img.jpg
148 - Galerius - RIC VI London 50 9 viewsFollis
Obv:– IMP MAXIMIANVS P F IN AVG, Laureate, cuirassed bust right
Rev:– GENIO POPV-LI ROMANI, Genius standing left, modius on head, naked but for chlamys over left shoulder, left hand holding cornucopiae and right hand holding patera
Minted in London (_). Group II - i. May A.D. 305 - Late A.D. 306 or into Early A.D. 307
Reference(s) – Cohen ?. RIC VI London 50 (R, citing Voetter with a footnote stating that confirmation is needed). LMCC (page 126) 4.03.012

Same die pair as LMCC plate coin and BM example (BM B.54, 9.98g, 6h. ex De Salis 1860)

9.77 gms. 29.01 mm diameter. 180 degree die orientation.
maridvnvm
Val.jpg
1501s, Valentinian I, 25 February 364 - 17 November 375 A.D. (Siscia)100 viewsValentinian I, 25 February 364 - 17 November 375 A.D., Bronze AE 3, S 4103, VF, Siscia mint, 2.012g, 18.7mm, 180o, 24 Aug 367 - 17 Nov 375 A.D.obverse D N VALENTINI-ANVS P F AVG, pearl-diademed, draped and cuirassed bust right; reverse SECVRITAS - REIPVBLICAE, Victory advancing left, wreath in right and palm in left, symbols in fields, mintmark in exergue.


De Imperatoribus Romanis, An Online Encyclopedia of the Roman Emperors and their Families

Valentinian I (364-375 AD.)

Walter E. Roberts, Emory University

Valentinian was one of Rome's last great warrior emperors. Flavius Valentinianus, was born in A.D. 321 at Cibalis (modern Vinkovci) in southern Pannonia. His father Gratian was a soldier renowned for his strength and wrestling skills. Gratian had an illustrious career in the army, rising from staff officer to tribune, to comes Africae, and finally [i/comes Britanniae.

The emperor Jovian died on 17 February 364, apparently of natural causes, on the border between Bithynia and Galatia. The army marched on to Nicaea, the nearest city of any consequence, and a meeting of civil and military officials was convened to choose a new emperor. The assembly finally agreed upon Valentinian.

On 26 February 364, Valentinian accepted the office offered to him. As he prepared to make his accession speech, the soldiers threatened to riot, apparently uncertain as to where his loyalties lay. Valentinian reassured them that the army was his greatest priority. Furthermore, to prevent a crisis of succession if he should die prematurely, he agreed to pick a co-Augustus. According to Ammianus, the soldiers were astounded by Valentinian’s bold demeanor and his willingness to assume the imperial authority. His decision to elect a fellow-emperor could also be construed as a move to appease any opposition among the civilian officials in the eastern portion of the empire. By agreeing to appoint a co-ruler, he assured the eastern officials that someone with imperial authority would remain in the east to protect their interests. After promoting his brother Valens to the rank of tribune and putting him in charge of the royal stables on March 1, Valentinian selected Valens as co-Augustus at Constantinople on 28 March 364, though this was done over the objections of Dagalaifus. Ammianus makes it clear, however, that Valens was clearly subordinate to his brother.

Ammianus and Zosimus as well as modern scholars praise Valentinian for his military accomplishments. He is generally credited with keeping the Roman empire from crumbling away by “. . . reversing the generally waning confidence in the army and imperial defense . . ..” Several other aspects of Valentinian's reign also set the course of Roman history for the next century.

Valentinian deliberately polarized Roman society, subordinating the civilian population to the military. The military order took over the old prestige of the senatorial nobility. The imperial court, which was becoming more and more of a military court, became a vehicle for social mobility. There were new ideas of nobility, which was increasingly provincial in character. By this it is meant that the imperial court, not the Senate, was the seat of nobility, and most of these new nobles came from the provinces. With the erosion of the old nobility, the stage was set for the ascendancy of Christianity. Ammianus makes it clear that actions such as these were part of a systematic plan by Valentinian to erode the power and prestige of the senatorial aristocracy. Several pieces of extant legislation seem to confirm Ammianus’ allegations that Valentinian was eroding senatorial prestige.

Valentinian's reign affords valuable insights into late Roman society, civilian as well as military. First, there was a growing fracture between the eastern and western portions of the empire. Valentinian was the last emperor to really concentrate his resources on the west. Valens was clearly in an inferior position in the partnership. Second, there was a growing polarization of society, both Christian versus pagan, and civil versus military. Finally there was a growing regionalism in the west, driven by heavy taxation and the inability of Valentinian to fully exercise military authority in all areas of the west. All of these trends would continue over the next century, profoundly reshaping the Roman empire and western Europe.

By Walter E. Roberts, Emory University
Published: De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families http://www.roman-emperors.org/startup.htm. Used by permission.

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.
1 commentsCleisthenes
ValentGlRom.jpg
1501s, Valentinian I, 25 February 364 - 17 November 375 A.D. (Siscia)56 viewsValentinian I, 25 February 364 - 17 November 375 A.D. Bronze AE 3, RIC 5(a) ii, VF, Siscia, 1.905g, 19.3mm, 0o, 25 Feb 364 - 24 Aug 367 A.D. Obverse: D N VALENTINI-ANVS P F AVG, pearl-diademed, draped and cuirassed bust right; Reverse: GLORIA RO-MANORVM, Emperor dragging captive with right, labarum (chi-rho standard) in left, •GSISC in exergue.


De Imperatoribus Romanis, An Online Encyclopedia of the Roman Emperors and their Families

Valentinian I (364-375 AD.)

Walter E. Roberts, Emory University

Valentinian was one of Rome's last great warrior emperors. Flavius Valentinianus, was born in A.D. 321 at Cibalis (modern Vinkovci) in southern Pannonia. His father Gratian was a soldier renowned for his strength and wrestling skills. Gratian had an illustrious career in the army, rising from staff officer to tribune, to comes Africae, and finally [i/comes Britanniae.

The emperor Jovian died on 17 February 364, apparently of natural causes, on the border between Bithynia and Galatia. The army marched on to Nicaea, the nearest city of any consequence, and a meeting of civil and military officials was convened to choose a new emperor. The assembly finally agreed upon Valentinian.

On 26 February 364, Valentinian accepted the office offered to him. As he prepared to make his accession speech, the soldiers threatened to riot, apparently uncertain as to where his loyalties lay. Valentinian reassured them that the army was his greatest priority. Furthermore, to prevent a crisis of succession if he should die prematurely, he agreed to pick a co-Augustus. According to Ammianus, the soldiers were astounded by Valentinian’s bold demeanor and his willingness to assume the imperial authority. His decision to elect a fellow-emperor could also be construed as a move to appease any opposition among the civilian officials in the eastern portion of the empire. By agreeing to appoint a co-ruler, he assured the eastern officials that someone with imperial authority would remain in the east to protect their interests. After promoting his brother Valens to the rank of tribune and putting him in charge of the royal stables on March 1, Valentinian selected Valens as co-Augustus at Constantinople on 28 March 364, though this was done over the objections of Dagalaifus. Ammianus makes it clear, however, that Valens was clearly subordinate to his brother.

Ammianus and Zosimus as well as modern scholars praise Valentinian for his military accomplishments. He is generally credited with keeping the Roman empire from crumbling away by “. . . reversing the generally waning confidence in the army and imperial defense . . ..” Several other aspects of Valentinian's reign also set the course of Roman history for the next century.

Valentinian deliberately polarized Roman society, subordinating the civilian population to the military. The military order took over the old prestige of the senatorial nobility. The imperial court, which was becoming more and more of a military court, became a vehicle for social mobility. There were new ideas of nobility, which was increasingly provincial in character. By this it is meant that the imperial court, not the Senate, was the seat of nobility, and most of these new nobles came from the provinces. With the erosion of the old nobility, the stage was set for the ascendancy of Christianity. Ammianus makes it clear that actions such as these were part of a systematic plan by Valentinian to erode the power and prestige of the senatorial aristocracy. Several pieces of extant legislation seem to confirm Ammianus’ allegations that Valentinian was eroding senatorial prestige.

Valentinian's reign affords valuable insights into late Roman society, civilian as well as military. First, there was a growing fracture between the eastern and western portions of the empire. Valentinian was the last emperor to really concentrate his resources on the west. Valens was clearly in an inferior position in the partnership. Second, there was a growing polarization of society, both Christian versus pagan, and civil versus military. Finally there was a growing regionalism in the west, driven by heavy taxation and the inability of Valentinian to fully exercise military authority in all areas of the west. All of these trends would continue over the next century, profoundly reshaping the Roman empire and western Europe.

By Walter E. Roberts, Emory University
Published: De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families http://www.roman-emperors.org/startup.htm. Used by permission.

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.
Cleisthenes
13594p00.jpg
1502c, Valens, 28 March 364 - 9 August 378 A.D. (Cyzikus)53 viewsBronze AE 3, S 4118, 2.42g, 16.5mm, 180o,Cyzikus, F/F, obverse D N VALENS P F AVG, pearl-diademed, draped and cuirassed bust right; reverse SECVRITAS REIPVBLICAE, Victory advancing left, wreath in right, palm frond in left, SMK L(?) in exergue. Ex FORVM.


De Imperatoribus Romanis, An Online Encyclopedia of the Roman Emperors and their Families

Valens (365-369 AD.)

Noel Linski, University of Colorado

Valens was the brother of Valentinian I. On March 28, 364, precisely one month after his accession by Roman reckoning, Valentinian appointed his brother Flavius Valens co-emperor at the Hebdomon, the first in a long line of emperors proclaimed there. Themistius was present and later recounted the occasion in his Or. 6. After only two months of co-rulership, the two departed from Constantinople for their native Illyricum. Outside Naissus, in Moesia, they divided their administrative staff between them and at Sirmium they did the same with their mobile forces. Valens was to rule the east, from Thrace in the North and Cyrenaica in the South eastward to the Persian frontier. Valentinian ruled the west. They did not spend long in Sirmium. By late August 365 Valentinian had moved on toward Milan, where he resided for the following year before moving on to Trier, which remained his capital until 375. Similarly, Valens was back in Constantinople by December 364.and he was declared Augustus in 364 A.D. He was given command of the Eastern provinces, where he spent much of his time campaigning against the Goths and Persians.

In 376 A.D., Valens allowed Gothic tribes, who were being driven forward by the Huns to settle in the Danube provinces. The Goths were so badly treated by the Romans that they rebelled. Valens marched against the confederated barbarian army, and on August 9, 378, the two forces met at Adrianople. Although negotiations were attempted, these broke down when a Roman unit sallied forth and carried both sides into battle. The Romans held their own early on but were crushed by the surprise arrival of Greuthungi cavalry which split their ranks.

In one historical account, Valens was wounded in battle but escaped to a nearby farmstead where he was burned to death in a tower by Gothic marauders. The fourth century A.D. Roman historian Ammianus Marcellinus does not seem to concur with this story. Regardless, when the battle was over Valens' body was never recovered, 10,000 roman soldiers lay dead and the perception of Roman military invincibility was destroyed.

Adrianople was the most significant event in Valens' career. Though he displayed some talent as an administrator, Valens' persecutions of Nicene Christians and pagan philosophers, his halting efforts at military achievement and his obtuse personality rendered him a less than glorious emperor. To have died in so inglorious a battle has thus come to be regarded as the nadir of an unfortunate career. This is especially true because of the profound consequences of Valens' defeat.

Adrianople spelled the beginning of the end for Roman territorial integrity in the late empire and this fact was recognized even by contemporaries. The Roman historian Ammianus (325-391 AD) understood that it was the worst defeat in Roman history since Cannae. Rufinus (340–410 CE), monk, historian, and theologian; called it "the beginning of evils for the Roman empire then and thereafter."

Noel Lenski, University of Colorado
Published: De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families http://www.roman-emperors.org/startup.htm. Used by permission.

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.
Cleisthenes
Valens.jpg
1502h, Valens, 364-378 A.D. (Heraclea)47 viewsValens, 364-378 A.D., Heraclea mint, VF, Chi-Rho standard reverse.


De Imperatoribus Romanis, An Online Encyclopedia of the Roman Emperors and their Families

Valens (365-369 AD.)

Noel Linski, University of Colorado

Valens was the brother of Valentinian I. On March 28, 364, precisely one month after his accession by Roman reckoning, Valentinian appointed his brother Flavius Valens co-emperor at the Hebdomon, the first in a long line of emperors proclaimed there. Themistius was present and later recounted the occasion in his Or. 6. After only two months of co-rulership, the two departed from Constantinople for their native Illyricum. Outside Naissus, in Moesia, they divided their administrative staff between them and at Sirmium they did the same with their mobile forces. Valens was to rule the east, from Thrace in the North and Cyrenaica in the South eastward to the Persian frontier. Valentinian ruled the west. They did not spend long in Sirmium. By late August 365 Valentinian had moved on toward Milan, where he resided for the following year before moving on to Trier, which remained his capital until 375. Similarly, Valens was back in Constantinople by December 364.and he was declared Augustus in 364 A.D. He was given command of the Eastern provinces, where he spent much of his time campaigning against the Goths and Persians.

In 376 A.D., Valens allowed Gothic tribes, who were being driven forward by the Huns to settle in the Danube provinces. The Goths were so badly treated by the Romans that they rebelled. Valens marched against the confederated barbarian army, and on August 9, 378, the two forces met at Adrianople. Although negotiations were attempted, these broke down when a Roman unit sallied forth and carried both sides into battle. The Romans held their own early on but were crushed by the surprise arrival of Greuthungi cavalry which split their ranks.

In one historical account, Valens was wounded in battle but escaped to a nearby farmstead where he was burned to death in a tower by Gothic marauders. The fourth century A.D. Roman historian Ammianus Marcellinus does not seem to concur with this story. Regardless, when the battle was over Valens' body was never recovered, 10,000 roman soldiers lay dead and the perception of Roman military invincibility had been destroyed.

Adrianople was the most significant event in Valens' career. Though he displayed some talent as an administrator, Valens' persecutions of Nicene Christians and pagan philosophers, his halting efforts at military achievement and his obtuse personality rendered him a less than glorious emperor. To have died in so inglorious a battle has thus come to be regarded as the nadir of an unfortunate career. This is especially true because of the profound consequences of Valens' defeat.

Adrianople spelled the beginning of the end for Roman territorial integrity in the late empire and this fact was recognized even by contemporaries. The Roman historian Ammianus (325-391 AD) understood that it was the worst defeat in Roman history since Cannae. Rufinus (340–410 CE), monk, historian, and theologian; called it "the beginning of evils for the Roman empire then and thereafter."

Noel Lenski, University of Colorado
Published: De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families http://www.roman-emperors.org/startup.htm. Used by permission.

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.
1 commentsCleisthenes
Theo1Ae3Ant.jpeg
1505b, Theodosius I, 19 January 379 - 17 January 395 A.D. (Antioch)70 viewsTheodosius I, 19 January 379 - 17 January 395 A.D. Bronze AE 3, RIC 44(b), VF, Antioch, 2.17g, 18.1mm, 180o, 9 Aug 378 - 25 Aug 383 A.D. Obverse: D N THEODOSIVS P F AVG, rosette-diademed, draped and cuirassed bust right; Reverse: CONCORDIA AVGGG, Constantinopolis enthroned facing, r. foot on prow, globe in l., scepter in r., Q and F at sides, ANTG in ex; scarce.


De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families

THEODOSIUS I (379-395 A.D.)
David Woods
University College of Cork


Origin and Early Career
Flavius Theodosius was born at Cauca in Spain in about 346 to Thermantia and Theodosius the Elder (so-called to distinguish him from his son). Theodosius the Elder was a senior military officer serving in the Western empire and rose to become the magister equitum praesentalis under the emperor Valentinian I from late 368 until his execution in early 375. As the son of a soldier, Theodosius was legally obliged to enter upon a military career. He seems to have served under his father during his expedition to Britain in 367/8, and was the dux Moesiae Primae by late 374. Unfortunately, great controversy surrounds the rest of his career until Gratian had him hailed as his imperial colleague in succession to the emperor Valens at Sirmium on 19 January 379. It is clear that he was forced to retire home to Spain only to be recalled to active service shortly thereafter, but the circumstances of his forced retirement are shrouded in mystery. His father was executed at roughly the same time, and much speculation has centred on the relationship between these events.

[For a very detailed and interesting discussion of the Foreign Policy of Theodosius and the Civil Wars that plagued his reign, please see http://www.roman-emperors.org/theo1.htm]

Family and Succession
Theodosius married twice. His first wife was the Spanish Aelia Flavia Flaccilla. She bore him Arcadius ca. 377, Honorius on 9 September 384, and Pulcheria ca. 385. Theodosius honoured her with the title of Augusta shortly after his accession, but she died in 386. In late 387 he married Galla, daughter of Valentinian I and full-sister of Valentinian II. She bore him Gratian ca. 388, Galla Placidia ca. 388/390, and died in childbirth in 394, together with her new-born son John. Of his two sons who survived infancy, he appointed Arcadius as Augustus on 19 January 383 and Honorius as Augustus on 23 January 393. His promotion of Arcadius as a full Augustus at an unusually young age points to his determination right from the start that one of his own sons should succeed him. He sought to strengthen Arcadius' position in particular by means of a series of strategic marriages whose purpose was to tie his leading "generals" irrevocably to his dynasty. Hence he married his niece and adoptive daughter Serena to his magister militum per Orientem Stilicho in 387, her elder sister Thermantia to a "general" whose name has not been preserved, and ca. 387 his nephew-in-law Nebridius to Salvina, daughter of the comes Africae Gildo. By the time of his death by illness on 17 January 395, Theodosius had promoted Stilicho from his position as one of the two comites domesticorum under his own eastern administration to that of magister peditum praesentalis in a western administration, in an entirely traditional manner, under his younger son Honorius. Although Stilicho managed to increase the power of the magister peditum praesentalis to the disadvantage of his colleague the magister equitum praesentalis and claimed that Theodosius had appointed him as guardian for both his sons, this tells us more about his cunning and ambition than it does about Theodosius' constitutional arrangements.

Theodosius' importance rests on the fact that he founded a dynasty which continued in power until the death of his grandson Theodosius II in 450. This ensured a continuity of policy which saw the emergence of Nicene Christianity as the orthodox belief of the vast majority of Christians throughout the middle ages. It also ensured the essential destruction of paganism and the emergence of Christianity as the religion of the state, even if the individual steps in this process can be difficult to identify. On the negative side, however, he allowed his dynastic interests and ambitions to lead him into two unnecessary and bloody civil wars which severely weakened the empire's ability to defend itself in the face of continued barbarian pressure upon its frontiers. In this manner, he put the interests of his family before those of the wider Roman population and was responsible, in many ways, for the phenomenon to which we now refer as the fall of the western Roman empire.


Copyright (C) 1998, David Woods.
Published: De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families http://www.roman-emperors.org/startup.htm. Used by permission.

There is a nice segue here, as we pick-up John Julius Norwich's summation of the reign of Theodosius, "Readers of this brief account of his career may well find themselves wondering, not so much whether he deserved the title of 'the Great' as how he ever came to acquire it in the first place. If so, however, they may also like to ask themselves another question: what would have been the fate of the Empire if, at that critical moment in its history after the battle of Adrianople, young Gratian had not called him from his Spanish estates and put the future of the East into his hands? . . . the probability is that the whole Empire of the East would have been lost, swallowed up in a revived Gothic kingdom, with effects on world history that defy speculation.

In his civil legislation he showed, again and again, a consideration for the humblest of his subjects that was rare indeed among rulers of the fourth century. What other prince would have decreed that any criminal, sentenced to execution, imprisonment or exile, must first be allowed thirty days' grace to put his affairs in order? Or that a specified part of his worldly goods must go to his children, upon whom their father's crimes must on no account be visited? Or that no farmer should be obliged to sell his produce to the State at a price lower than he would receive on the open market?

Had he earned his title? Not, perhaps, in the way that Constantine had done or as Justinian was to do. But, if not ultimately great himself, he had surely come very close to greatness; and had he reigned as long as they did his achievements might well have equalled theirs. He might even have saved the Western Empire. One thing only is certain: it would be nearly a century and a half before the Romans would look upon his like again" (Norwich, John Julius. Byzantium, the Early Centuries. London: Penguin Group, 1990. 116-7;118).

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.



Cleisthenes
Theod1GlrMan.jpg
1505c, Theodosius I, 379 - 395 A.D. (Constantinople)79 viewsTheodosius I (379 - 395 AD) AE3. 388-394 AD, RIC IX 27(a)3, Third Officina. Seventh Period. 20.27 mm. 4.8gm. Near VF with black and earthen patina. Constantinople. Obverse: DN THEODO-SIANVS P F AVG, pearl-diademed, draped, & cuirassed bust right; Reverse: GLORIA-ROMANORVM, Theodosius I standing, facing, holding labarum and globe, CONSB in exergue (scarcer reverse). A Spanish find.



De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families

THEODOSIUS I (379-395 A.D.)
David Woods
University College of Cork


Origin and Early Career
Flavius Theodosius was born at Cauca in Spain in about 346 to Thermantia and Theodosius the Elder (so-called to distinguish him from his son). Theodosius the Elder was a senior military officer serving in the Western empire and rose to become the magister equitum praesentalis under the emperor Valentinian I from late 368 until his execution in early 375. As the son of a soldier, Theodosius was legally obliged to enter upon a military career. He seems to have served under his father during his expedition to Britain in 367/8, and was the dux Moesiae Primae by late 374. Unfortunately, great controversy surrounds the rest of his career until Gratian had him hailed as his imperial colleague in succession to the emperor Valens at Sirmium on 19 January 379. It is clear that he was forced to retire home to Spain only to be recalled to active service shortly thereafter, but the circumstances of his forced retirement are shrouded in mystery. His father was executed at roughly the same time, and much speculation has centred on the relationship between these events.

[For a very detailed and interesting discussion of the Foreign Policy of Theodosius and the Civil Wars that plagued his reign, please see http://www.roman-emperors.org/theo1.htm]

Family and Succession
Theodosius married twice. His first wife was the Spanish Aelia Flavia Flaccilla. She bore him Arcadius ca. 377, Honorius on 9 September 384, and Pulcheria ca. 385. Theodosius honoured her with the title of Augusta shortly after his accession, but she died in 386. In late 387 he married Galla, daughter of Valentinian I and full-sister of Valentinian II. She bore him Gratian ca. 388, Galla Placidia ca. 388/390, and died in childbirth in 394, together with her new-born son John. Of his two sons who survived infancy, he appointed Arcadius as Augustus on 19 January 383 and Honorius as Augustus on 23 January 393. His promotion of Arcadius as a full Augustus at an unusually young age points to his determination right from the start that one of his own sons should succeed him. He sought to strengthen Arcadius' position in particular by means of a series of strategic marriages whose purpose was to tie his leading "generals" irrevocably to his dynasty. Hence he married his niece and adoptive daughter Serena to his magister militum per Orientem Stilicho in 387, her elder sister Thermantia to a "general" whose name has not been preserved, and ca. 387 his nephew-in-law Nebridius to Salvina, daughter of the comes Africae Gildo. By the time of his death by illness on 17 January 395, Theodosius had promoted Stilicho from his position as one of the two comites domesticorum under his own eastern administration to that of magister peditum praesentalis in a western administration, in an entirely traditional manner, under his younger son Honorius. Although Stilicho managed to increase the power of the magister peditum praesentalis to the disadvantage of his colleague the magister equitum praesentalis and claimed that Theodosius had appointed him as guardian for both his sons, this tells us more about his cunning and ambition than it does about Theodosius' constitutional arrangements.

Theodosius' importance rests on the fact that he founded a dynasty which continued in power until the death of his grandson Theodosius II in 450. This ensured a continuity of policy which saw the emergence of Nicene Christianity as the orthodox belief of the vast majority of Christians throughout the middle ages. It also ensured the essential destruction of paganism and the emergence of Christianity as the religion of the state, even if the individual steps in this process can be difficult to identify. On the negative side, however, he allowed his dynastic interests and ambitions to lead him into two unnecessary and bloody civil wars which severely weakened the empire's ability to defend itself in the face of continued barbarian pressure upon its frontiers. In this manner, he put the interests of his family before those of the wider Roman population and was responsible, in many ways, for the phenomenon to which we now refer as the fall of the western Roman empire.


Copyright (C) 1998, David Woods.
Published: De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families http://www.roman-emperors.org/startup.htm. Used by permission.

There is a nice segue here, as we pick-up John Julius Norwich's summation of the reign of Theodosius, "Readers of this brief account of his career may well find themselves wondering, not so much whether he deserved the title of 'the Great' as how he ever came to acquire it in the first place. If so, however, they may also like to ask themselves another question: what would have been the fate of the Empire if, at that critical moment in its history after the battle of Adrianople, young Gratian had not called him from his Spanish estates and put the future of the East into his hands? . . . the probability is that the whole Empire of the East would have been lost, swallowed up in a revived Gothic kingdom, with effects on world history that defy speculation.

In his civil legislation he showed, again and again, a consideration for the humblest of his subjects that was rare indeed among rulers of the fourth century. What other prince would have decreed that any criminal, sentenced to execution, imprisonment or exile, must first be allowed thirty days' grace to put his affairs in order? Or that a specified part of his worldly goods must go to his children, upon whom their father's crimes must on no account be visited? Or that no farmer should be obliged to sell his produce to the State at a price lower than he would receive on the open market?

Had he earned his title? Not, perhaps, in the way that Constantine had done or as Justinian was to do. But, if not ultimately great himself, he had surely come very close to greatness; and had he reigned as long as they did his achievements might well have equalled theirs. He might even have saved the Western Empire. One thing only is certain: it would be nearly a century and a half before the Romans would look upon his like again" (Norwich, John Julius. Byzantium, the Early Centuries. London: Penguin Group, 1990. 116-7;118).

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.
Cleisthenes
RI 160be img.jpg
160 - Constantine the Great - RIC VII Lugdunum 0536 viewsObv:– IMP CONSTANTINVS AVG, Laureate bust right
Rev:– SOLI IN-VI-CTO COMITI, Sol standing left holding globe in left and raising right
Minted in Lugdunum. (A | S / PLC). (Bastien A.D. 315 to early A.D. 316)
Reference:– RIC VII Lugdunum 53. Bastien XI 609 (86 examples cited) but this example has an unlisted reverse legend break, Listed for INVIC-TO (normal) and rarely for INVI-CTO and INVI-C-TO.
maridvnvm
lverus_RIC1309.jpg
161-169 AD - LUCIUS VERUS AE sestertius - struck 162 AD36 viewsobv: IMP.CAES.L.AVREL.VERVS.AVG (laureated head right)
rev: CONCORD.AVGVSTOR.TRP.II (Verus and Aurelius standing with clasping hand), COS II in ex, S-C in field
ref: RIC III 1309 (M.Aurel) (C), C.36 (4frcs)
mint: Rome
23.03gms, 30mm

This coin is better in hand than the picture allow.
History: Never before had Rome been ruled jointly by two emperors, but their authority was not shared equally. Marcus clearly had more power than his younger brother, although officially his only additional title was "pontifex maximus," while Lucius was simply "pontifex".Joint rule was revived by Diocletian's establishment of the Tetrarchy in the late 3rd century.
berserker
divomaurel_RIC661(Comm).jpg
161-180 AD - MARCUS AURELIUS AE sestertius - struck 180 AD65 viewsobv: DIVVS M ANTONINVS PIVS (Marcus Autrelius bare head right)
rev: CONSECRATIO (Statue of Aurelius in quadriga drawn by elephants), S-C in ex.
ref: RIC III 661 (Commodus), Cohen 95 (30 frcs)
18.31gms, 28mm
Very rare

The last ’Good Emperor’, Marcus Aurelius died at a military encampment at Bononia on the Danube on 17 March 180, possibly of the plague, leaving the Roman Empire to his nineteen-year-old son. Upon hearing of his father's death, Commodus made preparations for Marcus' funeral, made concessions to the northern tribes, and made haste to return back to Rome in order to enjoy peace after nearly two decades of war.
1 commentsberserker
MAurel RIC91.jpg
161-180 AD - MARCUS AURELIUS AR denarius - struck 164 AD32 viewsobv: ANTONINVS AVG ARMENIACVS (laureate head right)
rev: P M TRP XVIII IMP II COS III (Emperor standing right with spear, leaning on shield)
ref: RIC III 91, C.468
mint: Rome
3.37gms, 18mm,

Aurelius received the title Armeniacus in the early 164 AD
berserker
0023-056.jpg
1633 - Mark Antony, Denarius96 viewsStruck in a travelling mint, moving with Mark Antony in 41 BC
ANT AVG IMP III VI R P C, Head of Mark Antony right
Fortuna standing left, holding rudder in right hand and cornucopiae in left; at feet, stork; below, PIETAS COS
3,82 gr - 20 mm
Ref : Crawford # 516/2, Sydenham # 1174, HCRI # 241, C # 77
Ex. Auctiones.GmbH

The following comment is copied from NAC auction # 52/294 about the very rare corresponding aureus :
The year 41 B.C., when this aureus was struck at a mint travelling in the East with Marc Antony, was a period of unusual calm for the triumvir, who took a welcomed, if unexpected, rest after the great victory he and Octavian had won late in 42 B.C. against Brutus and Cassius at the Battle of Philippi. Antony’s original plan of organising an invasion of Parthia was put on hold after he sailed to Tarsus, where he had summoned Cleopatra VII, the Greek queen of Egypt. She was to defend herself against accusations that she had aided Brutus and Cassius before Philippi, but it is generally agreed that the summons was merely a pretext for Antony’s plan to secure aid for his Parthian campaign. Their meeting was anything but a source of conflict; indeed, they found much common ground, including their agreement that it was in their mutual interests to execute Cleopatra’s sister and rival Arsinoe IV, who had been ruling Cyprus. In addition to sharing political interests, the two agreed that Antony would winter in Egypt to share a luxurious vacation with Cleopatra that caused a further postponement of Antony’s designs on Parthia. Thus began another of the queen’s liaisons with noble Romans, a prior having been Julius Caesar (and, according to Plutarch, Pompey Jr. before him). During the course of his stay in Egypt Cleopatra was impregnated, which resulted in twins born to her in 40 B.C. But this care-free period was only a momentary calm in the storm, for trouble was brewing in both the East and the West. Early in 40 B.C. Syria was overrun by the Parthians, seemingly while Antony travelled to Italy to meet Octavian following the Perusine War, in which Octavian defeated the armies of Antony’s wife and brother. The conflict with Octavian was resolved when they signed a pact at Brundisium in October, and Syria was eventually recovered through the efforts of Antony’s commanders from 40 to 38 B.C.{/i]

5 commentsPotator II
PO_1671_0800_E.jpg
1671/0 8 Reales8 views1671/0 8 Reales
Potosi, Bolivia
King Carlos II
Assayer: E (Antonio de Ergueta)
27.69 grams
Sedwick type: P37b
The date under the cross clearly shows the 1/0 overdate
cmcdon0923
1697_WILLIAM_III_FARTHING.JPG
1697 WILLIAM III AE FARTHING9 viewsObverse: GVLIELMVS•TERTIVS•. Laureate and cuirassed bust of William III facing right.
Reverse: BRITANNIA•. Britannia facing left, seated on shield and holding spear and olive-branch. In exergue, 1697.
Diameter: 23mm | Weight: 4.6gms | Die Axis: 6h
SPINK: 3557

This portrait of William III was designed under John (Jan) Roettier (1631-c.1700) and his sons, Norbert and James. The Roettiers were medallists from a family whose members had distinguished themselves in the art for nearly two centuries. John was born in Antwerp, the eldest son, he learned the art of medal engraving and stone cutting from his father, Philip Roettiers who was a medallist and goldsmith. At an early age John was an assistant at the Antwerp Mint, but left in 1661 to go to London at the invitation of Charles II. In 1670 he became Chief engraver at the royal Mint, London, and remained at that post until 1698. Norbert Roettiers (1665-1727) was the third son of John Roettiers, with whom he apprenticed. In 1690 he was appointed Assistant Engraver at the Royal Mint, together with his brother James. James, however, was removed from his office at the mint in consequence of the theft of dies from the Tower of London and he died in 1698 after falling from his horse.
*Alex
1699_WILLIAM_III_FARTHING~0.JPG
1699 WILLIAM III AE FARTHING11 viewsObverse: GVLIELMVS•TERTIVS•. Laureate and cuirassed bust of William III facing right.
Reverse: BRITANNIA•1699. Britannia facing left, seated on shield and holding spear and olive-branch.
Diameter: 23mm | Weight: 4.3gms | Die Axis: 6h
SPINK: 3558

This portrait of William III was designed under John (Jan) Roettier (1631-c.1700) and his sons, Norbert and James. The Roettiers were medallists from a family whose members had distinguished themselves in the art for nearly two centuries. John was born in Antwerp, the eldest son, he learned the art of medal engraving and stone cutting from his father, Philip Roettiers who was a medallist and goldsmith. At an early age John was an assistant at the Antwerp Mint, but left in 1661 to go to London at the invitation of Charles II. In 1670 he became Chief engraver at the royal Mint, London, and remained at that post until 1698. Norbert Roettiers (1665-1727) was the third son of John Roettiers, with whom he apprenticed. In 1690 he was appointed Assistant Engraver at the Royal Mint, together with his brother James. James, however, was removed from his office at the mint in consequence of the theft of dies from the Tower of London and he died in 1698 after falling from his horse.
*Alex
Saladin_A788.jpg
1701a, Saladin, 1169-11932046 viewsAYYUBID: Saladin, 1169-1193, AR dirham (2.92g), Halab, AH580, A-788, lovely struck, well-centered & bold, Extremely Fine, Scarce.

His name in Arabic, in full, is SALAH AD-DIN YUSUF IBN AYYUB ("Righteousness of the Faith, Joseph, Son of Job"), also called AL-MALIK AN-NASIR SALAH AD-DIN YUSUF I (b. 1137/38, Tikrit, Mesopotamia--d. March 4, 1193, Damascus), Muslim sultan of Egypt, Syria, Yemen, and Palestine, founder of the Ayyubid dynasty, and the most famous of Muslim heroes.

In wars against the Christian crusaders, he achieved final success with the disciplined capture of Jerusalem (Oct. 2, 1187), ending its 88-year occupation by the Franks. The great Christian counterattack of the Third Crusade was then stalemated by Saladin's military genius.

Saladin was born into a prominent Kurdish family. On the night of his birth, his father, Najm ad-Din Ayyub, gathered his family and moved to Aleppo, there entering the service of 'Imad ad-Din Zangi ibn Aq Sonqur, the powerful Turkish governor in northern Syria. Growing up in Ba'lbek and Damascus, Saladin was apparently an undistinguished youth, with a greater taste for religious studies than military training.
His formal career began when he joined the staff of his uncle Asad ad-Din Shirkuh, an important military commander under the amir Nureddin, son and successor of Zangi. During three military expeditions led by Shirkuh into Egypt to prevent its falling to the Latin-Christian (Frankish) rulers of the states established by the First Crusade, a complex, three-way struggle developed between Amalric I, the Latin king of Jerusalem, Shawar, the powerful vizier of the Egyptian Fatimid caliph, and Shirkuh. After Shirkuh's death and after ordering Shawar's assassination, Saladin, in 1169 at the age of 31, was appointed both commander of the Syrian troops and vizier of Egypt.

His relatively quick rise to power must be attributed not only to the clannish nepotism of his Kurdish family but also to his own emerging talents. As vizier of Egypt, he received the title king (malik), although he was generally known as the sultan. Saladin's position was further enhanced when, in 1171, he abolished the Shi'i Fatimid caliphate, proclaimed a return to Sunnah in Egypt, and consequently became its sole ruler.

Although he remained for a time theoretically a vassal of Nureddin, that relationship ended with the Syrian emir's death in 1174. Using his rich agricultural possessions in Egypt as a financial base, Saladin soon moved into Syria with a small but strictly disciplined army to claim the regency on behalf of the young son of his former suzerain.
Soon, however, he abandoned this claim, and from 1174 until 1186 he zealously pursued a goal of uniting, under his own standard, all the Muslim territories of Syria, northern Mesopotamia, Palestine, and Egypt.

This he accomplished by skillful diplomacy backed when necessary by the swift and resolute use of military force. Gradually, his reputation grew as a generous and virtuous but firm ruler, devoid of pretense, licentiousness, and cruelty. In contrast to the bitter dissension and intense rivalry that had up to then hampered the Muslims in their resistance to the crusaders, Saladin's singleness of purpose induced them to rearm both physically and spiritually.

Saladin's every act was inspired by an intense and unwavering devotion to the idea of jihad ("holy war")-the Muslim equivalent of the Christian crusade. It was an essential part of his policy to encourage the growth and spread of Muslim religious institutions.

He courted its scholars and preachers, founded colleges and mosques for their use, and commissioned them to write edifying works especially on the jihad itself. Through moral regeneration, which was a genuine part of his own way of life, he tried to re-create in his own realm some of the same zeal and enthusiasm that had proved so valuable to the first generations of Muslims when, five centuries before, they had conquered half the known world.

Saladin also succeeded in turning the military balance of power in his favour-more by uniting and disciplining a great number of unruly forces than by employing new or improved military techniques. When at last, in 1187, he was able to throw his full strength into the struggle with the Latin crusader kingdoms, his armies were their equals. On July 4, 1187, aided by his own military good sense and by a phenomenal lack of it on the part of his enemy, Saladin trapped and destroyed in one blow an exhausted and thirst-crazed army of crusaders at Hattin, near Tiberias in northern Palestine.

So great were the losses in the ranks of the crusaders in this one battle that the Muslims were quickly able to overrun nearly the entire Kingdom of Jerusalem. Acre, Toron, Beirut, Sidon, Nazareth, Caesarea, Nabulus, Jaffa (Yafo), and Ascalon (Ashqelon) fell within three months.

But Saladin's crowning achievement and the most disastrous blow to the whole crusading movement came on Oct. 2, 1187, when Jerusalem, holy to both Muslim and Christian alike, surrendered to the Sultan's army after 88 years in the hands of the Franks. In stark contrast to the city's conquest by the Christians, when blood flowed freely during the barbaric slaughter of its inhabitants, the Muslim reconquest was marked by the civilized and courteous behaviour of Saladin and his troops. His sudden success, which in 1189 saw the crusaders reduced to the occupation of only three cities, was, however, marred by his failure to capture Tyre, an almost impregnable coastal fortress to which the scattered Christian survivors of the recent battles flocked. It was to be the rallying point of the Latin counterattack.

Most probably, Saladin did not anticipate the European reaction to his capture of Jerusalem, an event that deeply shocked the West and to which it responded with a new call for a crusade. In addition to many great nobles and famous knights, this crusade, the third, brought the kings of three countries into the struggle.

The magnitude of the Christian effort and the lasting impression it made on contemporaries gave the name of Saladin, as their gallant and chivalrous enemy, an added lustre that his military victories alone could never confer on him.

The Crusade itself was long and exhausting, and, despite the obvious, though at times impulsive, military genius of Richard I the Lion-Heart, it achieved almost nothing. Therein lies the greatest-but often unrecognized--achievement of Saladin. With tired and unwilling feudal levies, committed to fight only a limited season each year, his indomitable will enabled him to fight the greatest champions of Christendom to a draw. The crusaders retained little more than a precarious foothold on the Levantine coast, and when King Richard set sail from the Orient in October 1192, the battle was over.

Saladin withdrew to his capital at Damascus. Soon, the long campaigning seasons and the endless hours in the saddle caught up with him, and he died. While his relatives were already scrambling for pieces of the empire, his friends found that the most powerful and most generous ruler in the Muslim world had not left enough money to pay for his own grave.

BIBLIOGRAPHY
H.A.R. Gibb, "The Arabic Sources for the Life of Saladin," Speculum, 25:58-72 (1950). C.W. Wilson's English translation of one of the most important Arabic works, The Life of Saladin (1897), was reprinted in 1971. The best biography to date is Stanley Lane-Poole, Saladin and the Fall of the Kingdom of Jerusalem, new ed. (1926, reprinted 1964), although it does not take account of all the sources.
See: http://stp.ling.uu.se/~kamalk/language/saladin.html
Ed. J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.
1 commentsCleisthenes
GermanI.jpg
1789/90-1865 AD - Johann Jacob Lauer - Rechenpfenning (Jeton)527 viewsMaker: Johann Jacob Lauer (1789/90-1865 AD)
Date: Early-Mid 1800's AD
Condition: Very Fine
Type: Rechenpfenning (Jeton)

Obverse: PLUS ULTRA (Going Further)
Ship with four masts.

Reverse: IOH : LAUER * RECN * PF
Johann Lauer Rechenpfenning
Five stars with a crescent moon above.

Struck in Neurenberg
Note: Slight possibility this was struck by grandson of same name later in the century.
0.47g; 13.5mm; 90°
Pep
1791_HULL_HALFPENNY.JPG
1791 AE Halfpenny Token. Hull, Yorkshire.40 viewsObverse: GULIELMUS TERTIUS REX •. Equestrian statue of King William III facing right; in exergue, MDCLXXXIX.
Reverse: HULL HALFPENNY. Coat of Arms of Hull (a shield bearing three crowns vertically) between sprigs of oak, 1791 above.
Edge: PAYABLE AT THE WAREHOUSE OF IONATHAN GARTON & Co • X •.
Diameter 29mm | Die Axis 6
Dalton & Hamer: 19

This token was issued by Jonathan Garton who was a linen draper with a business in the market place in Hull.
There is slight die damage, a common feature of 18th century tokens, visible at the horse's breast on the obverse.

The “three crowns” have been used as Hull’s coat of arms since the early 1400s. A depiction of the shield in stained glass in St Mary’s Church Lowgate dates from the reign of Richard III (1483-85) and is among the earliest versions to survive.
The equestrian statue of William III depicted on this token is one of Hull's key landmarks, it has been standing in the centre of the city square since 1734.
*Alex
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1791 AE Halfpenny Token. Hull, Yorkshire.32 viewsObverse: No legend. A ship sailing right, two laurel branches below.
Reverse: HULL HALFPENNY / 1791. Coat of Arms of Hull (a shield bearing three crowns vertically) between two sprigs of oak with eight acorns on each branch.
Edge: PAYABLE IN HULL AND IN LONDON • X X •.
Diameter 29mm | Die Axis 7
Dalton & Hamer: 22

This token was issued by Jonathan Garton who was a linen draper with a business in the market place in Hull.
The dies for this token were engraved by John Gregory Hancock who was also probably responsible for manufacturing it.

The “three crowns” have been used as Hull’s coat of arms since the early 1400s. The College of Arms, the institution which regulates heraldry in England, confirmed the right of the Borough (now City) of Hull to use the crowns in the 1600s. Since then, virtually every public building in the City has been decorated with the coat of arms.
A depiction of the shield in stained glass in St Mary’s Church Lowgate dates from the reign of Richard III (1483-85) and is among the earliest versions to survive.
*Alex
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1791 AE Halfpenny Token. Rochdale, Lancashire.27 viewsObverse: ROCHDALE / 1791. Sheep facing left, being weighed suspended in a sling round it's waist.
Reverse: HALFPENNY. Detailed view from behind of a weaver, sitting half-right, working at a loom.
Edge: PAYABLE AT THE WAREHOUSE OF IOHN KERSHAW • X •.
Diameter 30mm | Die Axis 6
Dalton & Hamer: 140

This token was engraved and manufactured by J.G.Hancock in Birmingham.
It was issued by John Kershaw who appears to have been a mercer and draper with a business in Rochdale, and who is also thought to have been connected with a woollen mill in the town.

Rochdale's recorded history begins with an entry in the Domesday Book of 1086 under Recedham Manor. The ancient parish of Rochdale was a division of the hundred of Salford and one of the largest ecclesiastical parishes in England comprising several townships. By 1251, Rochdale had become important enough to have been granted a Royal charter. Subsequently, the town flourished into a centre of northern England's woollen trade, and by the early 18th century was described as being "remarkable for many wealthy merchants".
During the 19th century, Rochdale rose to prominence as a major mill town and centre for textile manufacture. It was amongst the first ever industrialised towns during the Industrial Revolution and the Rochdale Canal was a highway of commerce during this time, being used for the haulage of cotton, wool and coal.
*Alex
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1794 (?) Undated AE Halfpenny. Lancaster, Lancashire.41 viewsObverse: IOHN OF GAUNT DUKE OF LANCASTER ★. Bust of John of Gaunt, Duke of Lancaster, facing left.
Reverse: SUCCESS TO THE COMMERCE OF BRITAIN. Britannia standing on the shore facing left, holding a spray of leaves in her outstretched right hand, and a shield and spear in her left; three ships at sea to the left in front of her and another vessel in the distance behind her; two men ploughing the ground behind her to the right. Below, in exergue, lion facing right and sprig of three leaves.
Edge: Plain.
Diameter: 29mm
Dalton & Hamer: 54
RARE

This token was probably manufactured by Peter Kempson in Birmingham, the dies were engraved by J.G.Hancock.
In the 18th century, token manufacturers often used their dies to their own advantage by striking “mules”, solely with the object of creating rare varieties which were sold to the collectors of the day.
The Britannia design has been copied from a silver medal commemorating the Treaty of Utrecht by John Croker which was originally struck under Queen Anne in 1713

JOHN OF GAUNT
John of Gaunt, 1st Duke of Lancaster, was a member of the House of Plantagenet, he was the third surviving son of King Edward III of England and Philippa of Hainault. He was called "John of Gaunt" because he was born in Ghent, then anglicised as Gaunt.
John of Gaunt's legitimate male heirs, the Lancasters, included Kings Henry IV, Henry V, and Henry VI. John fathered five children outside marriage, one early in life by a lady-in-waiting to his mother, and four surnamed "Beaufort" (after a former French possession) by Katherine Swynford, Gaunt's long-term mistress and third wife. The Beaufort children, three sons and a daughter, were legitimised by royal and papal decrees after John and Katherine married in 1396; a later proviso that they were specifically barred from inheriting the throne was inserted with dubious authority by their half-brother Henry IV. The three succeeding houses of English sovereigns from 1399, the Houses of Lancaster, York and Tudor, were descended from John through Henry Bolingbroke, Joan Beaufort and John Beaufort, respectively.
John of Gaunt's eldest son and heir, Henry Bolingbroke, Duke of Hereford, was exiled for ten years by King Richard II in 1398. When John of Gaunt died at the age of 58 on 3rd February, 1399, his estates and titles were declared forfeit to the crown because King Richard II named Henry Bolingbroke a traitor and sentenced him to exile for life, but Henry returned from exile to reclaim his inheritance and depose Richard. Henry Bolingbroke then reigned as King Henry IV of England from 1399 to 1413, the first of the descendants of John of Gaunt to hold the throne of England.
John of Gaunt, due to his land grants, was one of the wealthiest men to have ever lived, his estates are estimated to have been worth a modern equivalent of $110 billion.
*Alex
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1795 AE Halfpenny, Glamorgan, South Wales.64 viewsObverse: JESTYN • AP • GWRGAN • TYWYSOG • MORGANWG • 1091•. Crowned and robed bust of Jestyn ap Gwrgan facing left, wearing a small shield bearing the St George's cross suspended on a chain round his neck.
Reverse: Y • BRENHIN • AR • GYFRAITH •. Britannia facing left, seated on a globe, her right hand pointing to a ship, her left supporting a shield and a spear; behind her a cippus with a crown on top and a laurel branch leaning against it; in exergue, 1795.
Edge: "GLAMORGAN HALFPENNY" in raised letters, followed by three leaves.
Diameter: 29mm
Dalton & Hamer:3b (Glamorganshire)

This token is thought to have been engraved and manufactured by John Stubbs Jordan, a Birmingham ironfounder for his father, William Jordan, who had returned to South Wales, possibly to Merthyr Tydfil. The Jordens were of Welsh descent and had come to Staffordshire earlier in the century. The father, William Jorden, a victualler from Weaman Street, Birmingham, retired and moved back to South Wales in the early 1780s and in 1794 his son, John Stubbs Jorden, who had remained back in Birmingham, made this Welsh token for his father as a private piece.
This is the only eighteenth century token with Welsh legends.

Jestyn ap Gwrgan, or Gwrgant, was the last Prince and Lord of Glamorgan of British blood. He was of the royal house of Morganwg, which had a lineage stretching back over five centuries to Tewdrig (c.550-584 C.E.). The members of this royal house had links to the other royal houses of Wales through marriage, and were descendants of the celebrated Rhodri Mawr. Jestyn ap Gwrgan's base is believed to have been at Dinas Powis, south of Cardiff. He probably ruled Glamorgan for a little less than a decade around 1081-1090 C.E.
The popular version of historical events is that Jestyn, following a dispute with his rival Einion ap Collwyn, invited the Norman ruler Robert Fitzhamon, lord of Gloucester, and his twelve knights into the region to settle the matter. Once invited in, the Normans refused to leave, Jestyn was deposed and Fitzhamon, having established a lordship based in Cardiff, subsequently conquered the lowlands of Glamorgan, which was parcelled out to his followers. The undesirable mountainous parts of Glamorgan Fitzhamon left in Welsh control. However this story, dating from at least the 15th century, where it touches known historical facts, is demonstrably wrong.
Nowadays there are many people living in South Wales with the surname of Williams who claim to be descended from Jestyn ap Gwrgan. This is not impossible because Jestyn ap Gwrgan had a large family. Notable people who may have been descended from Jestyn ap Gwrgan are the Tudor Monarchs of England, Oliver Cromwell (whose real surname was Williams) and also, being of Welsh descent, Winston Churchill, Princess Diana and several Presidents of The United States of America.
1 comments*Alex
1797_(Undated)_MAIL_COACH_HALFPENNY.JPG
1797 Undated AE Halfpenny Token. London, Middlesex28 viewsObverse: Mail Coach, with GR cypher on it's door, drawn by four horses galloping right; above, HALFPENNY PAYA-BLE IN LONDON; below, TO TRADE EXPEDIN & TO PROPERTY PROTECTION.
Reverse: THIS IS INSCRIBED ✤ TO J. PALMER ESQ. around AFH cypher within palm branches.
Edge: Plain.
Diameter 28mm | Die Axis 12
Dalton & Hamer: 366

There were several issues of Mail Coach halfpennies, the last dated issue being in 1797. This, the final token in the series is undated, its Mail Coach obverse is similar, but the inscription is different and the reverse has the cypher AFH which has been linked to Anthony Francis Holdinhand, a merchant of 51 St. Mary-Axe in London. St. Mary-Axe is now the site of the well-known "Gherkin" skyscraper which was opened there in 2004.

Though these “Mail Coach” tokens are associated with John Palmer, he did not issue them. Famous in his day the story goes that, on 2nd. August 1784 at 4.00 pm, Palmer began an experimental journey from the "Rummer" Tavern in Bristol. The coach reached the "Three Tuns" in Bath at 5.20 pm and, travelling overnight, arrived at "The Swan with Two Necks" Inn in London at 8.00 am. Palmer, who knew how to operate a fast system of chaises between Bath and Bristol in order to get a quick exchange of actors and properties, had predicted the sixteen hour journey which the Post Office surveyors had said was impossible. The Post Office's mounted 'Post Boys' were taking nearly two days to carry the mail from Bath to London at the time. Palmer's successful experiment led to his appointment as Comptroller-General of the Post Office and, helped by road improvements, a network of routes served by dedicated Mail Coaches spread rapidly.
1 comments*Alex
1813_SHEFFIELD_PENNY_TOKEN_.JPG
1813 AE Penny, Sheffield, Yorkshire.28 viewsObverse: PAYABLE AT S. HOBSON & SON's, BUTTON MANUFACTURERS, incuse letters on a raised rim. Arms consisting of eight arrows arranged saltirewise, bound together with a ribbon; pheon on either side; above, a facing winged cherubim; below, SHEFFIELD.
Reverse: ONE PENNY TOKEN 1813 incuse letters on a raised rim. Britannia seated facing left on shield, holding olive branch and trident, small ship in left background; small “H” (for Halliday) below shield.
Edge: Centre-grained.
Diameter 34mm
Davis:138

The dies for this token were engraved by Thomas Halliday (c.1780-1854). Active in the early 19th century, Halliday originally worked as an engraver at Matthew Boulton's Soho Mint in Handsworth and set up on his own as a medallist and token-producer from 1801. Established in Newhall Street, Birmingham about 1810, he engraved dies for the trade, or engraved and manufactured tokens and medals at his own works for all traders who wished to issue them.

This token was issued by Hobson & Son who were button manufacturers with a business in Sheffield.
*Alex
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1843 "BENJAMIN NIGHTINGALE" AE Halfpenny Token. London, Middlesex18 viewsObverse: VILIUS EST ARGENTUM AURO, VIRTUTIBUS AURUM. Female, leaning on books behind her, holding a cornucopia from which coins are spilling, seated facing right in front of an open coin cabinet; in exergue, tudor rose on shield between two branches.
Reverse: BENJAMIN NIGHTINGALE LONDON * PRIVATE TOKEN * 1843 surrounding “BN” monogram in script.
Edge: Plain.
Diameter: 30mm | Weight: 14.2gms | Die Axis: 12
Bell (Middlesex) A3
VERY RARE (Only 72 of these bronzed copper halfpenny tokens were struck)

Privately issued in London by Benjamin Nightingale, the die sinker for this token was William Joseph Taylor (whose initials WJT can be seen to the left below the books on the obverse), following a similar design for halfpennies that he had produced for Matthew Young, a British merchant. Taylor was born in Birmingham in 1802 and was apprenticed to Thomas Halliday in 1818 as the first die-sinker to be trained by him. He set up his own business as a die-sinker, medallist and engraver at 5 Porter Street, Soho, London in 1829, later moving to 3 Lichfield Street, Birmingham. In 1843 the business moved to 33 Little Queen Street and finally, in 1869, to 70 Red Lion Street where, in 1885, Taylor died.
The Soho Mint at Birmingham (founded by Matthew Boulton) closed in 1848, and it's plant and equipment was sold via auction in April 1850. Taylor purchased many of the Soho Mint's hubs and dies from this auction and used them to restrike many of the coins & patterns that the Soho Mint had struck between the 1790's and the 1840's, though he nearly always re-polished or re-engraved elements of the original dies before re-using them.

Benjamin Nightingale was a wine and spirit merchant who lived at 17 Upper Stamford Street, Blackfriars Road in London. He was born in 1806 and died on March 9th, 1862. He was a well known Antiquarian and was a member of the Numismatic Society of London.
In 1863, after his death, Benjamin Nightingale's collection, consisting of 359 lots, was sold over a two day period by Sotheby's. This is from the February 13, 1863 edition of the London Daily News (page 8, column 6).

THE VALUABLE CABINET of COINS and MEDALS of the late BENJAMIN NIGHTINGALE, Esq.
MESSRS S. LEIGH SOTHEBY and WILKINSON, auctioneers of literary property and works illustrative of the fine arts, will SELL BY AUCTION, at their house, No. 13 (late 3), Wellington-street, Strand, W.C., on WEDNESDAY, Feb. 25, and following day, at 1 precisely, the valuable CABINET OF COINS and MEDALS of the late Benjamin Nightingale, Esq.; comprising a few Roman coins in gold, silver, and copper, in the highest state of preservation; a most valuable collection of English medals in all metals; rare and curious jetons, including a very perfect set of those struck to illustrate the history of the low countries; a few remarkable foreign medals, a choice library of numismatic books, several well-made cabinets, & c. – May be viewed two days previous, and catalogues had on receipt of two stamps.

According to Manville and Robertson, prior to his death, Benjamin Nightingale had sold off part of his collection at an auction by Sotheby's on 29th Nov. 1855.
"Benjamin NIGHTINGALE" in ANS copy; Greek, Roman, Tavern Tokens, Town Pieces, 17-18c Tokens, English and Foreign Medals, Books; 165 lots. -Curtis Clay.

The inspiration for these tokens might have been Pye's 1797 halfpenny (Warwickshire 223) which is of a similar design.
*Alex
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1922C ALEXIUS METROPOLITAN TETARTERON S-1922 DOC 35 CLBC 2.4.3 19 viewsOBV Christ Bearded and nimbate wearing tunic and kolobion, seated on a throne without back; holds gospel in l. hand. ( This is what it should be , coin is a brokerage of sorts.)

REV: Bust of emperor wearing stemma, divitision, and chlamys; holds in r. hand scepter cruciger and in l. hand Globus crucifer.

Size 15/16mm

Weight 4.00gm

Metropolitan Issues were minted in Constantinople, each of these coins had an added silver content of 3% and were also issued with a very light silver wash (Silver traces are common on Metropolitan issues but intact fully silvered coins are very rare.) These more than likely were tariffed at a higher rate than the Thessalonica issues that have been shown to have no silver content. Metropolitan issues are in general far scarcer than the Thessalonica issues.

This coin was attributed by rev alone, it is the only possible match for Alexius and it is clearly by inscription, his rule.

DOC catalog lists 9 examples with weights ranging from 2.95gm to 3.72 and size from 16mm to 20mm
Simon
George_V_1927_Penny.JPG
1927 GEORGE V "Modified Large head" AE Penny6 viewsObverse: GEORGIVS V DEI GRA:BRITT:OMN:REX FID:DEF:IND:IMP: . Bare head of George V facing left.
Reverse: ONE PENNY. Britannia seated facing right, right hand resting on shield, left hand holding trident; 1927 in exergue. Some original mint lustre.
SPINK: 4054

George V's portrait was designed by Bertram Mackennal (1863 - 1931), this is marked by a small "BM" on the King's neck.

No pennies were struck from 1923 to 1925 while the mint made an effort to stop the ghosting which plagued the earlier George V penny issues. Ghosting is when the design from one side of a coin shows through on the opposite side, in this case it is the portrait's outline which can be seen on the reverse. The first attempt at a solution, in 1926, had been to alter the bronze alloy from 95% Copper, 4% tin and 1% Zinc to 95.5% Copper, 3% tin and 1.5% Zinc but this, coupled with modifications to the portrait, proved unsuccessful in addressing the ghosting problem. In 1927, in a further attempt to address the problems of ghosting, both the King's portrait on the obverse and Britannia on the reverse were modified so that the details were more clearly defined and struck in slightly lower relief. However, the ghosting problem was not completely resolved until 1928 when the portrait of the King was reduced in size.
*Alex
9711a.jpg
193 AD Clodius Albinus Caesar, Sestertius RIC 50111 viewsClodius Albinus Caesar, Sestertius, Rome mint 193 AD
Obv.: D [C]LODIVS AL - BINVS CAES , Head, bare, r.
Rev.: PROVID - AVG COS / S - C , Providentia standing l., holding wand over globe and sceptre.
RIC IV, part I, p. 51, no. 50 ; C 59

Decimus Clodius Septimius Albinus was born in Hadrumetum (modern Sousse in Tunisia) and came from a prominent senatorial family. He held high office under Marcus Aurelius and continued under Commodus, becoming consul in 187 and governor of Britain in 191. After the murder of Pertinax and the purchase of the Empire by Didius Julianus, Albinus, joined by his rivals Pescennius Niger and Septimius Severus, made preparations to march on Rome. Severus got there first and, in order to free himself for battle in the East, had Albinus proclaimed Caesar and made him his heir. Needless to say, after his defeat of Niger, Severus turned on Albinus and had him declared a public enemy in 195. Albinus was hailed emperor in Lugdunum in either late 195 or early 196, and spent the next year raising troops: Severus moved into Gaul with his army in 196 and in a huge battle outside Lugdunum on 19 February, defeated Albinus who then committed suicide.

my ancient coin database
1 commentsArminius
c albinus RIC7.jpg
193-195 AD - CLODIUS ALBINUS Caesar AR denarius - struck 194-195 AD141 viewsobv: D CLOD SEPT ALBIN CAES (bare head right)
rev: MINER PACIF COS II (Minerva standing facing with olive branch, shield & spear)
ref: RIC IVi 7, C.48 (12frcs)
mint: ? , 2.87gms, 17mm
Rare

Decimus Clodius Septimius Albinus, Governor of Britain and Gaul, was declared "Caesar of the West" in 193 and made co-regent with Severus late in 195. However, these concessions to his considerable power were only the means by which Severus averted a direct conflict with Albinus until he was ready for one. Early in 197 when Severus' own position was more secure, he attacked Albinus at Lugdunum (Lyons). Albinus was murdered or committed suicide on 19 February 197.
berserker
2m.jpg
1930 ALEXIUS AE TETARTERON S-1930 DOC 39 CLBC 2.4.6 58 viewsOBV Bust of Virgin nimbate, orans, wearing tunic and maphorion.

REV Bust of emperor wearing stemma, divitision and chlamys; holds in r. hand labarum on a long shaft and in l. Globus cruciger.

Size 22.75

Weight 3.6mm

This is a Thessalonica minted coin, it contains no silver. It is believed to be valued at 1/864 Hyperpyron and the Metropolitan (Constantinople) issues at 1/288 Hyperpyron. This coins are much more common than Metropolitan coins and very abundant in today’s marketplace.

DOC lists 5 examples with weights ranging from 2.05gm to 4.02gm and sizes ranging from 20mm to 22m

This coin has been clearly overstruck over an earlier follis. DOC also notes 3 out the five examples are also overstruck. I believe this issue was created quickly when a shortage of the new coinage occurred. It is difficult to find a clean strike of this
1 commentsSimon
193_Didius_Julianus_Dupondius_RIC_12_1.jpg
193_Didius_Julianus_Dupondius_RIC_12_122 viewsDidius Julianus (March 28th – early June 193 AD)
AE Dupondius, Rome, March 28th – early June 193 AD
IMP CAES M DID IVLIAN AVG;
Radiate head right
PM TR P COS, S-C;
Fortuna standing left, holding rudder on globe and cornucopiae
10,85 gr, 25 mm
RIC IVa, 12; BMC V, 17; C. 13; CMB I, 3
Ex Künker, Auction 193, lot 827
Ex Künker, Auction 236, lot 1111
1 commentsga77
193_Manlia_Scantilla_As_RIC_19a_1.jpg
193_Manlia_Scantilla_As_RIC_19a_112 viewsManlia Scantilla (? – 193 AD)
AE As/Dupondius, Rome, March 28th – early June 193 AD
MANL SCANTILLA AVG;
Draped bust right, hair elaboratley waved and coiled on back of head
IVNO REGINA, S-C;
Juno standing left, holding patera and sceptre, peacock at feet
8,61 gr, 21 mm
RIC IVa, 19a; BMC V, 37; C. 4; CMB I, 1

Not 100% sure it is authentic. Flan cracks look strange on the photo, but are much more convincing in hand.
ga77
194_Septimius_Severus_As_RIC_p_182stern_1.jpg
194_Septimius_Severus_As_RIC_p_182stern_19 viewsSeptimius Severus (193 – 211 AD)
AE As, Rome, early 194
L SEPT SEV PERT AVG IMP II;
Laureate head right
SAL AVG TR P II COS II, S-C;
Salus standing left, holding sceptre in left, patera in right over altar at feet
10,35 gr, 25 mm
RIC IVa, p. 182* (misdescribed); BMC V, p. 127 note (misdescribed); cf. C. 313 var. (Sestertius omitting IMP II)

From the Martin Griffiths Collection
ga77
195_Septimius_Severus_Dupondius_RIC_cf699_1.jpg
195_Septimius_Severus_Dupondius_RIC_cf699_115 viewsSeptimius Severus (193 – 211 AD)
AE Dupondius, Rome, 195
L SEPT SEV PERT AVG IMP V;
Radiate head right
APOLLINI AVGVSTO, S-C;
Apollo standing left, holding patera and lyre
13,2 gr, 26 mm
Cf. RIC IVa, 699 (not listed as Dupondius); BMC V, p. 140*; C. 46
Ex Albrecht Marquis Kubinsky von Hohenkubin Collection, formed circa early 1900s
ga77
A_new_coin__Blackadjust_.jpg
196/1 AE As30 viewsAnonymous [Star]. Æ As. Rome Mint. c 169-158 BC. (32 mm, 17.95 g, 4 h) Rev: Laureate head of Janus; above, I. Obv: Prow of galley right; above, star; before, I; below, ROMA.
BMCRR 461; Syd 264; Crawford 196/1

Reddish-brown patina with some black spots. Nearly very fine.
A duplicate from the RBW Collection of Roman Republican Coins. Purchased privately from Frank Kovacs in 1988

Ex: Triskles
Paddy
r3.jpg
1986 ANDRONICUS METROPOLITIAN TETARTERON S-1986 DOC 5 CLBC 5.4.1 64 viewsOBV Full length figure of Virgin nimbate, wearing tunic and maphorion, standing on dais, holds nimbate beardless, nimbate head of Christ on breast.

REV Full length figure of emperor on l. crowned by Christ bearded and nimbate. Emperor wears stemma, divitision, and chlamys holds in r. hand labarum on long shaft and in l. anexikakia, Christ wearing tunic and kolobion, holds gospels in l. hand.

Size 19.51mm

Weight 3.3 gm

Metropolitan Issues were minted in Constantinople, each of these coins had an added silver content added but for Andronicus I can’t find how much under Manuel it fluctuated between 1% and 4% however by this time I would assume a decline. By the time of Isaac II the amount was 1% to 2% these still were more than likely were tariffed at a higher rate than the Thessalonica issues that have been shown to have no silver content. Metropolitan issues are in general far scarcer than the Thessalonica issues.

DOC lists 14 examples with weights from 2.49gm to 4.54gm and sizes from 18mm to 23mm

I have had this one from the early years of my collection, it far surpasses my other example
Simon
z5~0.jpg
1986 ANDRONICUS METROPOLITIAN TETARTERON SBCV-1986 DOC 5 CLBC 5.4.1 4 viewsOBV Full length figure of Virgin nimbate, wearing tunic and maphorion, standing on dais, holds nimbate beardless, nimbate head of Christ on breast.

REV Full length figure of emperor on l. crowned by Christ bearded and nimbate. Emperor wears stemma, divitision, and chlamys holds in r. hand labarum on long shaft and in l. anexikakia, Christ wearing tunic and kolobion, holds gospels in l. hand.

Size 20.84

Weight 4.55gm

Metropolitan Issues were minted in Constantinople, each of these coins had an added silver content added but for Andronicus I can’t find how much under Manuel it fluctuated between 1% and 4% however by this time I would assume a decline. By the time of Isaac II the amount was 1% to 2% these still were more than likely were tariffed at a higher rate than the Thessalonica issues that have been shown to have no silver content. Metropolitan issues are in general far scarcer than the Thessalonica issues.

DOC lists 14 examples with weights from 2.49gm to 4.54gm and sizes from 18mm to 23mm

I have had this one from the early years of my collection, it far surpasses my other example
Simon
1997-161-164_AurelianIoviConser-Forum.jpg
1997.161.16412 viewsSiscia, 4.00 g

Obverse: IMP AVRELIANVS AVG; Radiate, cuirassed, bust right.
Reverse: IOVI CON-SER; -/-//*Q; Emperor, in military dress, on left, standing right, holding short scepter in left, extending right hand to receive a globe from Jupiter, on right, standing left, extending globe in right hand, holding scepter in left.
Ref: RIC 225; RIC V,1 online, T-2220; LV 7036-7049; BnF XII.1, 1172-1173; (Autumn 272 – 273 – Early 274)
gordian_guy
1997-161-165_AurelianRestitutorOrbis-Forum.jpg
1997.161.16526 viewsCyzicus, 3.65 g

Obverse: IMP C AVRELIANVS AVG; Radiate, cuirassed, bust right.
Reverse: RESTITVTOR OR-BIS; -/-//*B; Emperor, on right, standing left, holding scepter in left and extending right hand to receive wreath from Female, on left, standing right; captive between, kneeling right, raising hands.
Ref: RIC V,1 online T-2981; LV 10312-10325; (Autumn 272 – Early 273)
gordian_guy
PCrassusDenAmazon.jpg
1ab Marcus Licinius Crassus172 viewsFormed First Triumvirate with Caesar and Pompey in 60 BC, killed at Carrhae in Parthia in 53 BC.

Denarius, minted by son, P Licinius Crassus, ca 54 BC.
Bust of Venus, right, SC behind
Amazon with horse, P CRASSVS MF.

These coins were probably minted to pay Crassus' army for the invasion of Parthia. The reverse figure is sometimes described as a warrior or Gaulish horseman, but this example clearly accords with those who identify the figure as a woman! Member of the first triumvirate, 59-53 BC.

Seaby, Licinia 18

Plutarch wrote of Crassus: People were wont to say that the many virtues of Crassus were darkened by the one vice of avarice, and indeed he seemed to have no other but that; for it being the most predominant, obscured others to which he was inclined. The arguments in proof of his avarice were the vastness of his estate, and the manner of raising it; for whereas at first he was not worth above three hundred talents, yet, though in the course of his political life he dedicated the tenth of all he had to Hercules, and feasted the people, and gave to every citizen corn enough to serve him three months, upon casting up his accounts, before he went upon his Parthian expedition, he found his possessions to amount to seven thousand one hundred talents; most of which, if we may scandal him with a truth, he got by fire and rapine, making his advantages of the public calamities. . . . Crassus, however, was very eager to be hospitable to strangers; he kept open house, and to his friends he would lend money without interest, but called it in precisely at the time; so that his kindness was often thought worse than the paying the interest would have been. His entertainments were, for the most part, plain and citizen-like, the company general and popular; good taste and kindness made them pleasanter than sumptuosity would have done. As for learning he chiefly cared for rhetoric, and what would be serviceable with large numbers; he became one of the best speakers at Rome, and by his pains and industry outdid the best natural orators. . . . Besides, the people were pleased with his courteous and unpretending salutations and greetings, for he never met any citizen however humble and low, but he returned him his salute by name. He was looked upon as a man well-read in history, and pretty well versed in Aristotle's philosophy. . . . Crassus was killed by a Parthian, called Pomaxathres; others say by a different man, and that Pomaxathres only cut off his head and right hand after he had fallen. But this is conjecture rather than certain knowledge, for those that were by had not leisure to observe particulars. . . .
2 commentsBlindado
MarcAntDenOctavian.jpg
1ae Marc Antony and Octavian43 viewsFormed the Second Triumvirate, 43-33 BC, , along with Marcus Aemilius Lepidus. Antony killed himself in 30 BC.

Denarius
41 BC

Marc Antony portrait, right, M ANT IMP AVG III VIR RPCM BARBAT QP
Octavian portrait, right, CAESAR IMP PONT III VIR RPC

RSC 8

Plutarch described Antony thusly: Antony grew up a very beautiful youth, but by the worst of misfortunes, he fell into the acquaintance and friendship of Curio, a man abandoned to his pleasures, who, to make Antony's dependence upon him a matter of greater necessity, plunged him into a life of drinking and dissipation, and led him through a course of such extravagance that he ran, at that early age, into debt to the amount of two hundred and fifty talents. . . . He took most to what was called the Asiatic taste in speaking, which was then at its height, and was, in many ways, suitable to his ostentatious, vaunting temper, full of empty flourishes and unsteady efforts for glory. . . . He had also a very good and noble appearance; his beard was well grown, his forehead large, and his nose aquiline, giving him altogether a bold, masculine look that reminded people of the faces of Hercules in paintings and sculptures. It was, moreover, an ancient tradition, that the Antonys were descended from Hercules, by a son of his called Anton; and this opinion he thought to give credit to by the similarity of his person just mentioned, and also by the fashion of his dress. For, whenever he had to appear before large numbers, he wore his tunic girt low about the hips, a broadsword on his side, and over all a large coarse mantle. What might seem to some very insupportable, his vaunting, his raillery, his drinking in public, sitting down by the men as they were taking their food, and eating, as he stood, off the common soldiers' tables, made him the delight and pleasure of the army. In love affairs, also, he was very agreeable: he gained many friends by the assistance he gave them in theirs, and took other people's raillery upon his own with good-humour. And his generous ways, his open and lavish hand in gifts and favours to his friends and fellow-soldiers, did a great deal for him in his first advance to power, and after he had become great, long maintained his fortunes, when a thousand follies were hastening their overthrow.
1 commentsBlindado
Lepidus_Antony_Quinarius.jpg
1af Lepidus_214 viewsQuinarius

M LEP IMP, simpulum, aspergillum, axe (surmounted by wolf's head) & ape

M ANT IMP, lituus, capis (jug) and raven

Military mint with Marcus Aemilius Lepidus & Antony in Transalpine Gaul, 44-42 BC

Cr489/3, Syd 1158a

Lepidus was a member of the Second Triumvirate.

According to Plutarch's Life of Pompey: Sulla, however, was annoyed at seeing to what a height of reputation and power Pompey was advancing, but being ashamed to obstruct his career, he kept quiet. Only, when in spite of him and against his wishes Pompey made Lepidus consul, by canvassing for him and making the people zealously support him through their goodwill towards himself, seeing Pompey going off through the forum with a throng, Sulla said: "I see, young man, that you rejoice in your victory; and surely it was a generous and noble thing for Lepidus, the worst of men, to be proclaimed consul by a larger vote than Catulus, the best of men, because you influenced the people to take this course. Now, however, it is time for you to be wide awake and watchful of your interests; you have made your adversary stronger than yourself." But Sulla showed most clearly that he was not well-disposed to Pompey by the will which he wrote. For whereas he bequeathed gifts to other friends, and made some of them guardians of his son, he omitted all mention of Pompey. And yet Pompey bore this with great composure, and loyally, insomuch that when Lepidus and sundry others tried to prevent the body of Sulla from being buried in the Campus Martius, or even from receiving public burial honours, he came to the rescue, and gave to the interment alike honour and security.

Soon after the death of Sulla, his prophecies were fulfilled, and Lepidus tried to assume Sulla's powers. He took no circuitous route and used no pretence, but appeared at once in arms, stirring up anew and gathering about himself the remnants of faction, long enfeebled, which had escaped the hand of Sulla. His colleague, Catulus, to whom the incorrupt and sounder element in the senate and people attached themselves, was the great Roman of the time in the estimate set upon his wisdom and justice, but was thought better adapted for political than military leadership. The situation itself, therefore, demanded Pompey, who was not long in deciding what course to take. He took the side of the nobility, and was appointed commander of an army against Lepidus, who had already stirred up a large part of Italy and was employing Brutus to hold Cisalpine Gaul with an army.

Other opponents against whom Pompey came were easily mastered by him, but at Mutina, in Gaul, he lay a long while besieging Brutus. Meanwhile, Lepidus had made a hasty rush upon Rome, and sitting down before it, was demanding a second consulship, and terrifying the citizens with a vast throng of followers. But their fear was dissipated by a letter brought from Pompey, announcing that he had brought the war to a close without a battle. For Brutus, whether he himself betrayed his army, or whether his army changed sides and betrayed him, put himself in the hands of Pompey, and receiving an escort of horsemen, retired to a little town upon the Po. Here, after a single day had passed, he was slain by Geminius, who was sent by Pompey to do the deed. And Pompey was much blamed for this. For as soon as the army of Brutus changed sides, he wrote to the senate that Brutus had surrendered to him of his own accord; then he sent another letter denouncing the man after he had been put to death. The Brutus who, with Cassius, killed Caesar, was a son of this Brutus, a man who was like his father neither in his wars nor in his death, as is written in his Life. As for Lepidus, moreover, as soon as he was expelled from Italy, he made his way over to Sardinia. There he fell sick and died of despondency, which was due, as we are told, not to the loss of his cause, but to his coming accidentally upon a writing from which he discovered that his wife was an adulteress.
Blindado
GermanicusAsSC.jpg
1an Germanicus36 viewsAdopted by Tiberius in 4 AD, died mysteriously in 19

As, struck by Caligula

Bare head, left, GERMANICVS CAESAR TI AVGVST F DIVI AVG N
C CAESAR AVG GERMANICVS PON M TR POT SC

RIC 57

Germanicus Julius Caesar (c16 BC-AD 19) was was born in Lugdunum, Gaul (modern Lyon). At birth he was named either Nero Claudius Drusus after his father or Tiberius Claudius Nero after his uncle. He received the agnomen Germanicus, in 9 BC, when it was posthumously awarded to his father in honour of his victories in Germania. Germanicus was the grandson-in-law and great-nephew of the Emperor Augustus, nephew and adoptive son of the Emperor Tiberius, father of the Emperor Caligula, brother of the Emperor Claudius, and the maternal grandfather of the Emperor Nero. He married his maternal second cousin Agrippina the Elder, a granddaughter of Augustus, between 5 and 1 BC. The couple had nine children. Two died very young; another, Gaius Julius Caesar, died in early childhood. The remaining six were: Nero Caesar, Drusus Caesar, the Emperor Caligula, the Empress Agrippina the Younger, Julia Drusilla, and Julia Livilla.

According to Suetonius: Germanicus, who was the son of Drusus the Elder and Antonia the Younger, was adopted (in 4AD) by Germanicus’s paternal uncle, Tiberius. He served as quaestor (in7AD) five years before the legal age and became consul (in12AD) without holding the intermediate offices. On the death of Augustus (in AD14) he was appointed to command the army in Germany, where, his filial piety and determination vying for prominence, he held the legions to their oath, though they stubbornly opposed Tiberius’s succession, and wished him to take power for himself.

He followed this with victory in Germany, for which he celebrated a triumph (in 17 AD), and was chosen as consul for a second time (18 AD) though unable to take office as he was despatched to the East to restore order there. He defeated the forces of the King of Armenia, and reduced Cappadocia to provincial status, but then died at Antioch, at the age of only thirty-three (in AD 19), after a lingering illness, though there was also suspicion that he had been poisoned. For as well as the livid stains which covered his body, and the foam on his lips, the heart was found entire among the ashes after his cremation, its total resistance to flame being a characteristic of that organ, they say, when it is filled with poison.

All considered Germanicus exceptional in body and mind, to a quite outstanding degree. Remarkably brave and handsome; a master of Greek and Latin oratory and learning; singularly benevolent; he was possessed of a powerful desire and vast capacity for winning respect and inspiring affection.

His scrawny legs were less in keeping with the rest of his figure, but he gradually fleshed them out by assiduous exercise on horseback after meals. He often killed enemy warriors in hand-to-hand combat; still pleaded cases in the courts even after receiving his triumph; and left various Greek comedies behind amongst other fruits of his studies.

At home and abroad his manners were unassuming, such that he always entered free or allied towns without his lictors.

Whenever he passed the tombs of famous men, he always offered a sacrifice to their shades. And he was the first to initiate a personal search for the scattered remains of Varus’s fallen legionaries, and have them gathered together, so as to inter them in a single burial mound.

As for Germanicus, Tiberius appreciated him so little, that he dismissed his famous deeds as trivial, and his brilliant victories as ruinous to the Empire. He complained to the Senate when Germanicus left for Alexandria (AD19) without consulting him, on the occasion there of a terrible and swift-spreading famine. It was even believed that Tiberius arranged for his poisoning at the hands of Gnaeus Calpurnius Piso, the Governor of Syria, and that Piso would have revealed the written instructions at his trial, had Tiberius not retrieved them during a private interview, before having Piso put to death. As a result, the words: ‘Give us back Germanicus!’ were posted on the walls, and shouted at night, all throughout Rome. The suspicion surrounding Germanicus’ death (19 AD) was deepened by Tiberius’s cruel treatment of Germanicus’s wife, Agrippina the Elder, and their children.
1 commentsBlindado
CaligulaAE27Caesonia.jpg
1ao2 Caesonia (?)19 viewsAE 27 of Carthago Nova, Spain

Laureate head of Caligula, right, C CAESAR AVG GERMANIS
Draped bust of Caesonia (as Salus) right, DN ATEL FLAC CN POM FLAC II VIR Q V I N C, SAL AVG across field

Generally held to portray the fourth wife of Caligula.

Sear 624

Caesonia, Milonia, (d41AD) was the fourth and last wife of Caligula. Her younger half-brother was the Consul Gnaeus Domitius Corbulo. Her niece, Domitia Longina, married Domitian. In 41, Caligula was assassinated and Caesonia and her daughter Julia Drusilla murdered.

Suetonius states: As for Caesonia, who was neither young nor beautiful, had three daughters by another man, and was wildly promiscuous and extravagant, he not only loved her more passionately for it, but also more faithfully, taking her out riding, and showing her to the soldiers, dressed in a cloak with helmet and shield: while he exhibited her to his friends stark naked. He did not honour her with the title of wife until she had given him a child, announcing his paternity and the marriage on the very same day. This child, whom he named Julia Drusilla, he carried round all the temples of the goddesses, before finally entrusting her to Minerva’s lap, calling on that goddess to nurture and educate his daughter. Nothing persuaded him more clearly that she was his own issue than her violent temper, which was so savage the infant would tear at the faces and eyes of her little playmates. . . .

And as [Caligula] kissed the neck of wife or sweetheart, he never failed to say: ‘This lovely thing will be slit whenever I say.’ Now and then he even threatened his dear Caesonia with torture, if that was the only way of discovering why he was so enamoured of her. . . . Some think that Caesonia his wife administered a love potion that had instead the effect of driving him mad.
Blindado
Caligula_Drusilla_AE20.jpg
1ao3 Julia Drusilla33 viewsAE 20 of Smyrna (Izmir, Turkey)
Laureate head of Caligula, right, ΓAION KAICAPA EΠI AOYIOΛA
Drusilla as Persephone seated left, poppies between two stalks of grain in right hand, long scepter vertical behind in left hand, ∆POYCIΛΛAN ZMYPNAIΩN MHNOΦANHC

Caligula’s sister

Klose XXVIII, 27 (Vs4/Rs10); RPC I 2472; SNG Cop 1343; SNGvA 2202; BMC Ionia p. 269, 272

According to Suetonius’ salacious account: Germanicus had married Agrippina the Elder, daughter of Marcus Agrippa and Julia the Elder, and she had borne him nine children. Two died in infancy, another in early childhood. . . .

The other children survived their father: three girls, Agrippina the Younger, Drusilla and Livilla, born in successive years; and three boys, Nero, Drusus, and Gaius Caesar (Caligula). . . . [Caligula] habitually committed incest with each of his three sisters, seating them in turn below him at large banquets while his wife reclined above. It is believed that he violated Drusilla’s virginity while a minor, and been caught in bed with her by his grandmother Antonia, in whose household they were jointly raised. Later, when Drusilla was married to Lucius Cassius Longinus, an ex-consul, he took her from him and openly treated her as his lawful married wife. When he fell ill he made her heir to his estate and the throne.

When Drusilla died (in 38AD) he declared a period of public mourning during which it was a capital offense to laugh, or bathe, or to dine with parents, spouse or children. Caligula himself was so overcome with grief that he fled the City in the middle of the night, and travelled through Campania, and on to Syracuse, returning again with the same degree of haste, and without cutting his hair or shaving. From that time forwards whenever he took an important oath, even in public or in front of the army, he always swore by Drusilla’s divinity.
Blindado
ClaudiusMessalinaAE20.jpg
1ap_2 Messalina36 viewsThird wife of Claudius, married in 38 (?)

AE 20, Knossos mint

Bare head of Claudius left, CLAVDIVS CAESAR AVG GERMANICVS

Draped bust of Messalina right, VALERIA MESSALINA [CAPITONE CYTHERONTE IIVIR] or [CYTHERO CAPITONE] (end of legend off flan)

According to Suetonius: [Claudius] was betrothed twice at an early age: to Aemilia Lepida, great-granddaughter of Augustus, and to Livia Medullina, who also had the surname of Camilla and was descended from the ancient family of Camillus the dictator. He put away the former before their marriage, because her parents had offended Augustus; the latter was taken ill and died on the very day which had been set for the wedding. He then married Plautia Urgulanilla, whose father had been honoured with a triumph, and later Aelia Paetina, daughter of an ex-consul. He divorced both these, Paetina for trivial offences, but Urgulanilla because of scandalous lewdness and the suspicion of murder. Then he married Valeria Messalina, daughter of his cousin Messala Barbatus. But when he learned that besides other shameful and wicked deeds she had actually married Gaius Silius, and that a formal contract had been signed in the presence of witnesses, he put her to death and declared before the assembled praetorian guard that inasmuch as his marriages did not turn out well, he would remain a widower, and if he did not keep his word, he would not refuse death at their hands. . . . [He later married Agrippina Jr.]

He had children by three of his wives: by Urgulanilla, Drusus and Claudia; by Paetina, Antonia; by Messalina, Octavia and a son, at first called Germanicus and later Britannicus. . . .

But it is beyond all belief, that at the marriage which Messalina had contracted with her paramour Silius he signed the contract for the dowry with his own hand, being induced to do so on the ground that the marriage was a feigned one, designed to avert and turn upon another a danger which was inferred from certain portents to threaten the emperor himself. . . .

He was so terror-stricken by unfounded reports of conspiracies that he had tried to abdicate. When, as I have mentioned before, a man with a dagger was caught near him as he was sacrificing, he summoned the senate in haste by criers and loudly and tearfully bewailed his lot, saying that there was no safety for him anywhere; and for a long time he would not appear in public. His ardent love for Messalina too was cooled, not so much by her unseemly and insulting conduct, as through fear of danger, since he believed that her paramour Silius aspired to the throne. . . .

Appius Silanus met his downfall. When Messalina and Narcissus had put their heads together to destroy him, they agreed on their parts and the latter rushed into his patron's bed-chamber before daybreak in pretended consternation, declaring that he had dreamed that Appius had made an attack on the emperor. Then Messalina, with assumed surprise, declared that she had had the same dream for several successive nights. A little later, as had been arranged, Appius, who had received orders the day before to come at that time, was reported to be forcing his way in, and as if were proof positive of the truth of the dream, his immediate accusation and death were ordered. . . .


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Denarius
Bewigged head, right, IMP OTHO CAESAR AVG TR P
Securitas stg., SECVRITAS P R

RIC 10

Suetonius wrote: Otho was born on the 28th of April 32 AD, in the consulship of Furius Camillus Arruntius and Domitius Ahenobarbus, Nero’s father. In early youth he was so profligate and insolent that he earned many a beating from his own father. . . . After his father died, he feigned love for an influential freedwoman at Court, though she was old and decrepit, in order to win her favour, and then used her to insinuate himself among the emperor’s friends, easily achieving the role of Nero’s chief favourite, not only because they were of a similar disposition, but also some say because of a sexual relationship. . . .

Otho had hoped to be adopted by Galba as his successor, and anticipated the announcement daily. But Piso was chosen, dashing Otho’s hopes, and causing him to resort to force, prompted not only by feelings of resentment but also by his mounting debts. He declared that frankly he would have to declare himself bankrupt, unless he became emperor. . . . When the moment was finally ripe, . . . his friends hoisted him on their shoulders and acclaimed him Emperor. Everyone they met joined the throng, as readily as if they were sworn accomplices and a part of the conspiracy, and that is how Otho arrived at his headquarters, amidst cheering and the brandishing of swords. He at once sent men to kill Galba and Piso. . . .

Meanwhile the army in Germany had sworn allegiance to Vitellius. When the news reached Otho he persuaded the Senate to send a deputation, advising the soldiers to maintain peace and order, since an emperor had already been chosen. However he also sent envoys with letters and personal messages, offering to share power with Vitellius, and marry his daughter. With civil war clearly inevitable, on the approach of Vitellius’s advance guard, who had marched on Rome led by their generals, . . . Otho began his campaign vigorously, and indeed too hastily. . . .

His army won three engagements, but of a minor nature, firstly in the Alps, then near Placentia, and finally at a place called Castor’s, and were ultimately defeated in a decisive and treacherous encounter at Betriacum (on the 14th April). . . . After this defeat, Otho resolved to commit suicide, more from feelings of shame, which many have thought justified, and a reluctance to continue the struggle with such high cost to life and property, than from any diffidence or fear of failure shown by his soldiers. . . . On waking at dawn (on the 16th of April, AD69), he promptly dealt himself a single knife-blow in the left side of his chest, and first concealing and then showing the wound to those who rushed in at the sound of his groaning, he breathed his last. . . . Otho was thirty-six years old when he died, on the ninety-second day of his reign. . . .

Neither his bodily form nor appearance suggested great courage. He is said to have been of medium height, bandy-legged and splay-footed, though as fastidious as a woman in personal matters. He had his body-hair plucked, and wore a toupee to cover his scanty locks, so well-made and so close-fitting that its presence was not apparent.
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Denarius
Portrait, right, A VITELLIVS GERMAN IMP TR P
Vesta std., PONT MAX

RIC 107

According to Suetonius: Lucius’s son Aulus, the future emperor, was born on the 24th of September 15AD, or according to some authorities on the 7th, during the consulship of Drusus Caesar and Norbanus Flaccus. . . . His boyhood and early youth were spent on Capreae (Capri) among Tiberius’s creatures, he himself being marked by the nickname of ‘Spintria’ (sex-token) throughout his life, and suspected of having secured his father’s first promotion to office by surrendering his own chastity. As he grew older, though contaminated by every kind of vice, Vitellius gained and kept a prominent place at court, winning Caligula’s friendship by his devotion to chariot-racing and Claudius’s by his love of dice. With Nero he was even closer. . . .

Honoured, as these emperors’ favourite, with high office in the priesthood, as well as political power, he governed Africa (under Nero, in 60/61AD) as proconsul, and was then Curator of Public Works (in 63AD), employing a contrasting approach, and with a contrasting effect on his reputation. In his province he acted with outstanding integrity over two successive years, since he served as deputy also to his brother who succeeded him (61/62AD) yet during his administration of the City he was said to have stolen various temple offerings and ornaments, and substituted brass and tin for the gold and silver in others. . . .

Contrary to all expectations, Galba appointed Vitellius to Lower Germany (in 68AD). Some think it was brought about by Titus Vinius, whose influence was powerful at that time, and whose friendship Vitellius had previously won through their mutual support for the ‘Blues’ in the Circus. But it is clear to everyone that Galba chose him as an act of contempt rather than favour, commenting that gluttons were among those least to be feared, and Vitellius’s endless appetite would now be able to sate itself on a province. . . .

He entered Rome to the sound of trumpets, surrounded by standards and banners, wearing a general’s cape, sword at his side, his officers in their military cloaks also, and the men with naked blades. With increasing disregard for the law, human or divine, he then assumed the office of High Priest on the anniversary of the Allia (18th July), arranged the elections for the next ten years, and made himself consul for life. . . .

Vitellius’s worst vices were cruelty and gluttony. . . . By the eighth month of his reign (November 69AD) the legions in Moesia and Pannonia had repudiated Vitellius, and sworn allegiance to Vespasian despite his absence, following those of Syria and Judaea who had done so in Vespasian’s presence. . . .

The vanguard of Vespasian’s army had now forced its way into the Palace, unopposed, and the soldiers were ransacking the rooms, in their usual manner. They hauled Vitellius, unrecognised, from his hiding place, asked his name and where the Emperor might be. He gave some lying answer, but was soon identified, so he begged for safe custody, even if that meant imprisonment, claiming he had important information for Vespasian regarding his security. However his arms were bound behind him and a noose flung over his head, and he was dragged along the Sacred Way to the Forum, amid a hail of mockery and abuse, half-naked, with his clothes in tatters. His head was held back by the hair, like a common criminal and, with a sword-point under his chin so that he was forced to look up and reveal his face, he was pelted with filth and dung, denounced as arsonist and glutton, and taunted with his bodily defects by the crowd. For, Vitellius was exceptionally tall, and his face was usually flushed from some drinking bout. He had a huge belly, too, and one thigh crippled by a blow from a four-horse chariot which struck him when he was in attendance on Caligula who was driving. At last, after being tormented by a host of cuts from the soldiers’ swords, he was killed on the Gemonian Stairs, and his body dragged with a hook to the Tiber.
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Sestertius
Laureate head, right, HADRIANVUS AVG COS III PP
Fortuna standing left with rudder on globe and cornucopia, FORTVNA AVG

RIC 759

According to the Historia Augusta, "Bereft of his father at the age of ten, he became the ward of Ulpius Trajanus, his cousin, then of praetorian rank, but afterwards emperor, and of Caelius Attianus, a knight. He then grew rather deeply devoted to Greek studies, to which his natural tastes inclined so much that some called him 'Greekling. . . .' In the 105-106 second Dacian war, Trajan appointed him to the command of the First Legion, the Minervia, and took him with him to the war; and in this campaign his many remarkable deeds won great renown. . . . On taking possession of the imperial power
Hadrian at once resumed the policy of the early emperors and devoted his attention to maintaining peace throughout the world. . . . [I]n this letter to the Senate he apologized because he had not left it the right to decide regarding his accession, explaining that the unseemly haste of the troops in acclaiming him emperor was due to the belief that the state could not be without an emperor. . . . He was, in the same person, austere and genial, dignified and playful, dilatory and quick to act, niggardly and generous, deceitful and straightforward, cruel and merciful, and always in all things changeable. . . . Hadrian's memory was vast and his ability was unlimited ; for instance, he personally dictated his speeches and gave opinions on all questions. He was also very witty. . . ."

After this Hadrian departed for Baiae, leaving Antoninus at Rome to carry on the government. But he received no benefit there, and he thereupon
sent for Antoninus, and in his presence he died there at Baiae on the sixth day before the Ides of July.

According to Eutropius: After the death of Trajan, AELIUS HADRIAN was made emperor, not from any wish to that effect having been expressed by Trajan himself, but through the influence of Plotina, Trajan's wife; for Trajan in his life-time had refused to adopt him, though he was the son of his cousin. He also was born at Italica in Spain. Envying Trajan's glory, he immediately gave up three of the provinces which Trajan had added to the empire, withdrawing the armies from Assyria, Mesopotamia, and Armenia, and deciding that the Euphrates should be the boundary of the empire. When he was proceeding, to act similarly with regard to Dacia, his friends dissuaded him, lest many Roman citizens should be left in the hands of the barbarians, because Trajan, after he had subdued Dacia, had transplanted thither an infinite number of men from the whole Roman world, to people the country and the cities; as the land had been exhausted of inhabitants in the long war maintained by Decebalus.

He enjoyed peace, however, through the whole course of his reign; the only war that he had, he committed to the conduct of a governor of a province. He went about through the Roman empire, and founded many edifices. He spoke with great eloquence in the Latin language, and was very learned in the Greek. He had no great reputation for clemency, but was very attentive to the state of the treasury and the discipline of the soldiers. He died in Campania, more than sixty years old, in the twenty-first year, tenth month, and twenty-ninth day of his reign. The senate was unwilling to allow him divine honours; but his successor Titus Aurelius Fulvius Antonius, earnestly insisting on it, carried his point, though all the senators were openly opposed to him.
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Denarius

Laureate draped bust, right, IMP C M OPEL SEV MACRINVS AVG
Providentia stg, PROVIDENTIA DEORVM

RIC 80

According to the Historia Augusta, which concedes that almost nothing was known about Macrinus: Though of humble origin and shameless in spirit as well as in countenance, and though hated by all, both civilians and soldiers, he nevertheless proclaimed himself now Severus and now Antoninus. Then he set out at once for the Parthian war and thus gave no opportunity either for the soldiers to form an opinion of him, or for the gossip by which he was beset to gain its full strength. The senators, however, out of hatred for Antoninus Bassianus, received him as emperor gladly. . . . Now to his son, previously called Diadumenianus, he gave the name Antoninus (after he had himself assumed the appellation Felix) in order to avert the suspicion of having slain Antoninus. This same name was afterwards taken by Varius Elagabalus also, who claimed to be the son of Bassianus, a most filthy creature and the son of a harlot. . . .

And so, having been acclaimed emperor, Macrinus assumed the imperial power and set out against the Parthians with a great array, eager to blot out the lowliness of his family and the infamy of his early life by a magnificent victory. But after fighting a battle with the Parthians he was killed in a revolt of the legions, which had deserted to Varius Elagabalus. He reigned, however, for more than a year.

Macrinus, then, was arrogant and bloodthirsty and desirous of ruling in military fashion. He found fault even with the discipline of former times and lauded Severus alone above all others. For he even crucified soldiers and always used the punishments meted out to slaves, and when he had to deal with a mutiny among the troops, he usually decimated the soldiers but sometimes he only centimated them. This last was an expression of his own, for he used to say that he was merciful in putting to death only one in a hundred. . . .

This is one of my favorite pieces because I bought it completely covered with crud and set about cleaning it. Boy was I surprised!
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Denarius

Laureate draped bust, right, IMP MAXIMINVS PIVS AVG
Pax stg, PAX AVGVSTI

RIC 12

Herodian recorded: There was in the Roman army a man named Maximinus whose half-barbarian family lived in a village in the most remote section of Thrace. They say that as a boy he was a shepherd, but that in his youthful prime he was drafted into the cavalry because of his size and strength. After a short time, favored by Fortune, he advanced through all the military ranks, rising eventually to the command of armies and the governing of provinces.

Because of his military experience, which I have noted above, Alexander put Maximinus in charge of training recruits for the entire army; his task was to instruct them in military duties and prepare them for service in war. By carrying out his assignments thoroughly and diligently, Maximinus won the affection of the soldiers. He not only taught them their duties; he also demonstrated personally to each man what he was to do. . . .

He won their devotion by giving them all kinds of gifts and rewards. Consequently, the recruits, who included an especially large number of Pannonians, praised the masculinity of Maximinus and despised Alexander as a mother's boy. . . . The soldiers were therefore ready for a change of emperors. . . . They therefore assembled on the drill field for their regular training; when Maximinus took his position before them, either unaware of what was happening or having secretly made prior preparations for the event, the soldiers robed him in the imperial purple and proclaimed him emperor. . . .

When he assumed control of the empire, Maximinus reversed the situation, using his power savagely to inspire great fear. He undertook to substitute for a mild and moderate rule an autocracy in every way barbarous, well aware of the hostility directed toward him because he was the first man to rise from a lowly station to the post of highest honor. His character was naturally barbaric, as his race was barbarian. He had inherited the brutal disposition of his countrymen, and he intended to make his imperial position secure by acts of cruelty, fearing that he would become an object of contempt to the Senate and the people, who might be more conscious of his lowly origin than impressed by the honor he had won. . . .

[A]fter Maximinus had completed three years as emperor, the people of Africa first took up arms and touched off a serious revolt for one of those trivial reasons which often prove fatal to a tyrant. . . . The entire populace of the city quickly assembled when the news was known, and the youths proclaimed Gordian Augustus. He begged to be excused, protesting that he was too old. . . .

[In Rome], the senators met before they received accurate information concerning Maximinus and, placing their trust for the future in the present situation, proclaimed Gordian Augustus, together with his son, and destroyed Maximinus' emblems of honor. . . . Embassies composed of senators and distinguished equestrians were sent to all the governors with letters which clearly revealed the attitude of the Senate and the Roman people. . . . The majority of the governors welcomed the embassies and had no difficulty in arousing the provinces to revolt because of the general hatred of Maximinus. . . .


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Radiate, cuirassed bust, right, IMP AVRELIANVS AVG
Aurelian & Severina or priest standing facing each other, each holding short sceptre, sacrificing at altar between them, S in ex, PIETAS AVG

Zosimus recorded: Aurelianus, having regulated the empire, went from Rome to Aquileia, and from thence into Pannonia, which he was informed the Scythians were preparing to invade. For this reason he sent orders to the inhabitants of that country to carry into the towns all their corn and cattle, and every thing that could be of use to the enemy, in order to distress them with famine, with which they were already afflicted. The Barbarians having crossed the river into Pannonia had an engagement, the result of which was nearly equal. But the same night, the Barbarians recrossed the river, and as soon as day appeared, sent ambassadors to treat for peace. |25

The Emperor, hearing that the Alemanni and the neighbouring nations intended to over-run Italy, was with just reason more concerned for Rome and the adjacent places, than for the more remote. Having therefore ordered a sufficient force to remain for the defence of Pannonia, he marched towards Italy, and on his route, on the borders of that country, near the Ister, slew many thousands of the Barbarians in one battle. Several members of the senate being at this time accused of conspiring against the emperor were put to death ; and Rome, which before had no walls, was now surrounded with them. This work was begun in the reign of Aurelianus, and was finished by Probus. At the same time Epitimius, Urbanus, and Domitianus, were likewise suspected as innovators, and were immediately apprehended and punished. During these occurrences in Italy and Pannonia, the emperor prepared to march against the Palmyrenians, who had subdued all Egypt, and the east, as far as Ancyra in Galatia, and would have acquired Bithynia even as far as Chalcedon, if the inhabitants of that country had not learned that Aurelianus was made emperor, and so shook off the Palmyrenian yoke. As soon as the emperor was on his march thither, Ancyra submitted to the Romans, and afterwards Tuana, and all the cities between that and Antioch. There finding Zenobia with a large army ready to engage, as he himself also was, he met and engaged her as honour obliged him [an defeated the enemy. . . .

[Having crushed Palmyra and razed it] He then entered Rome in triumph, where he was most magnificiently received by the senate and people. At this period also be erected that sumptuous temple of the sun, which he ornamented with all the sacred spoils that he brought from Palmyra; placing in it the statues of the sun and Belus. After this he easily reduced Tatricus with his rebellious accomplices, whom he brought to signal punishment. He likewise called in all the counterfeit money, and issued new, to avoid confusion in trade. Besides which he bestowed on the people a gift of bread, as a mark of his favour; and having arranged all affairs set out on a journey from Rome. . . .

During his stay at Perinthus, now called Heraclea, a conspiracy was thus formed against him. There was in the court a man named Eros, whose office was to carry out the answers of the emperor. This man had been for some fault threatened by the emperor, and put in great fear. Dreading therefore lest the emperor should realize his menaces by actions, he went to some of the guard, whom he knew to be the boldest men in the court; be told them a plausible story, and shewed them a letter of his own writing, in the character of the emperor (which he had long before learned to counterfeit), and persuading them first that they themselves were to be put to death, [h]e endeavoured to prevail on them to murder the emperor. The deception answered. Observing Aurelianus to go out of the city with a small retinue, they ran out upon him and murdered him.

RIC 138
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AE3

Pearl-diademed, helmeted, cuirassed bust left, holding shield & spear, D N FL CL IVLIANVS P F AVG
VOT X MVLT XX in four lines within wreath, palm branch-BSIS-palm branch in ex [?].

RIC 415

According to Zosimus: Constantius, having so well succeeded in his design against Vetranio, marched against Magnentius, having first conferred the title of Caesar on Gallus, the son of his uncle, and brother to Julian who was afterwards emperor, and given him in marriage his sister Constantia. . . . CONSTANTIUS, after having acted towards Gallus Caesar in the manner I have related, left Pannonia to proceed into Italy. . . . He scarcely thought himself capable of managing affairs at this critical period. He was unwilling, however, to associate any one with himself in the government, because he so much desired to rule alone, and could esteem no man his friend. Under these circumstances he was at a loss how to act. It happened, however, that when the empire was in the greatest danger, Eusebia, the wife of Constantius, who was a woman of extraordinary learning, and of greater wisdom than her sex is usually endowed with, advised him to confer the government of the nations beyond the Alps on Julianus Caesar, who was brother to Gallus, and grandson to Constantius. As she knew that the emperor was suspicious of all his kindred, she thus circumvented him. She observed to him, that Julian was a young man unacquainted with the intrigues of state, having devoted himself totally to his studies; and that he was wholly inexperienced in worldly business. That on this account he would be more fit for his purpose than any other person. That either he would be fortunate, and his success would be attributed to the emperor's conduct, or that he would fail and perish; and that thus Constantius would have none of the imperial family to succeed to him.

Constantius, having approved her advice, sent for Julian from Athens, where he lived among the philosophers, and excelled all his masters in every kind of learning. Accordingly, Julian returning from Greece into Italy, Constantius declared him Caesar, gave him in marriage his sister Helena, and sent him beyond the Alps. . . .

Constantius, having thus disposed of Julian, marched himself into Pannonia and Moesia, and having there suppressed the Quadi and the Sarmatians, proceeded to the east, and was provoked to war by the inroads of the Persians. Julian by this time had arrived beyond the Alps into the Gallic nations which he was to rule. Perceiving that the Barbarians continued committing the same violence, Eusebia, for the same reasons as before, persuaded Constantius to place the entire management of those countries into the hands of Julian. . . . Julian finding the military affairs of Gallia Celtica in a very ruinous state, and that the Barbarians pased the Rhine without any resistance, even almost as far as the sea-port towns, he took a survey of the remaining parts of the enemy. And understanding that the people of those parts were terrified at the very name of the Barbarians, while those whom Constantius had sent along with him, who were not more than three hundred and sixty, knew nothing more, as he used to say, than how to say their prayers, he enlisted as many more as he could and took in a great number of volunteers. He also provided arms, and finding a quantity of old weapons in some town he fitted them up, and distributed them among the soldiers. The scouts bringing him intelligence, that an immense number of Barbarians had crossed the river near the city of Argentoratum (Strasburg) which stands on the Rhine, he no sooner heard of it, than he led forth his army with the greatest speed, and engaging with the enemy gained such a victory as exceeds all description.

After these events he raised a great army to make war on the whole German nation; He was opposed however by the Barbarians in vast numbers. Caesar therefore would not wait while they came up to him, but crossed the Rhine, preferring that their country should be the seat of war, and not that of the Romans, as by that means the cities would escape being again pillaged by the Barbarians. A most furious battle therefore took place; a great number of the Barbarians being slain on the field of battle, while the rest fled, and were pursued by Caesar into the Hercynian forest, and many of them killed. . . .

But while Julian was at Parisium, a small town in Germany, the soldiers, being ready to march, continued at supper till midnight in a place near the palace, which they so called there. They were as yet ignorant of any design against Caesar [by Constantius], when some tribunes, who began to suspect the contrivance against him, privately distributed a number of anonymous billets among the soldiers, in which they represented to them, that Caesar, by his judicious conduct had so managed affairs, that almost all of them had erected trophies over the Barbarians ; that he had always fought like a private soldier, and was now in extreme danger from the emperor, who would shortly deprive him of his whole army, unless they prevented it. Some of the soldiers having read these billets, and published the intrigue to the whole army, all were highly enraged. They suddenly rose from their seats in great commotion, and with the cups yet in their hands went to the palace. Breaking open the doors without ceremony, they brought out Caesar, and lifting him on a shield declared him emperor and Augustus. They then, without attending to his reluctance, placed a diadem upon his head. . . .

Arriving at Naisus, he consulted the soothsayers what measures to pursue. As the entrails signified that he must stay there for some time, he obeyed, observing likewise the time that was mentioned in his dream. When this, according to the motion of the planets, was arrived, a party of horsemen arrived from Constantinople at Naisus, with intelligence that Constantius was dead, and that the armies desired Julian to be emperor. Upon this he accepted what the gods had bestowed upon him, and proceeded on his journey. On his arrival at. Byzantium, he was received with joyful acclamations. . . .

[After slashing through Persia and crossing the Tigris,] they perceived the Persian army, with which they engaged, and having considerably the advantage, they killed a great number of Persians. Upon the following day, about noon, the Persians drew up in a large body, and once more attacked the rear of the Roman army. The Romans, being at that time out of their ranks, were surprised and alarmed at the suddenness of the attack, yet made a stout and spirited defence. The emperor, according to his custom, went round the army, encouraging them to fight with ardour. When by this means all were engaged, the emperor, who sometimes rode to the commanders and tribunes, and was at other times among the private soldiers, received a wound in the heat of the engagement, and was borne on a shield to his tent. He survived only till midnight. He then expired, after having nearly subverted the Persian empire.

Note: Julian favored the pagan faith over Christianity and was tarred by the church as "the apostate."
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AE3

Pearl diademed, draped, cuirassed bust right , D N VALENTINIANVS P F AVG
Emperor in military dress, advancing right, head left, holding labarum, dragging captive behind him. No fieldmarks. Mintmark: dot GSISC, GLORIA ROMANORVM

RIC 5a

According to Zosimus: Several discussions were held among the soldiers and their officers, and various persons were nominated. At length Sallustius, the prefect of the court, was unanimously elected. He excused himself on the pretext of his advanced age, which disabled him from being of service in the present critical circumstances. They then desired that his son might be emperor in lieu of himself. But his son he told them was too young, and from that as well as other causes unable to sustain the weight of an imperial diadem. They thus failed in their wish to appoint so distinguished a person, who was the most worthy of the age. They therefore elected Valentinian, a native of Cibalis in Pannonia. He was an excellent soldier, but extremely illiterate. They sent for him, he being then at some distance: and the state was not long without a ruler. Upon his arrival at the army, at Nicaea in Bithynia, he assumed the imperial authority, and proceeded forward. . . .

I have now to state, that while Valentinian was on his journey towards Constantinople, he was seized with a distemper, which increased his natural choleric temper to a degree of cruelty, and even to madness, so that he falsely suspected his sickness to proceed from some charm or poison which Julian's friends had prepared for him through malice. Accusations to that effect were drawn up against some distinguished persons, which were set aside by the discretion of Sallustius, who still was prefect of the court. After his distemper abated, he proceeded from Nicaea to Constantinople. The army and his friends in that city advised him to choose an associate in the empire, that if occasion should require, he might have some one to assist him, and prevent their again suffering as at the death of Julian. He complied with their advice, and after consideration, selected his brother Valens, whom he thought most likely to prove faithful to him. He declared him associate in the empire. . . . Affairs being thus disposed, Valentinian deemed it most prudent to place the east as far as Egypt, Bithynia, and Thrace, under the care of his brother, and to take charge of Illyricum himself. From thence he designed to proceed to Italy, and to retain in his own possession all the cities in that country, and the countries beyond the Alps, with Spain, Britain, and Africa. The empire being thus divided, Valentinian began to govern more rigorously, correcting the faults of the magistrates. He was very severe in the collection of the imposts, and particularly in observing that the soldiers were duly paid. . . .

Meantime the Barbarians beyond the Rhine, who while Julian lived held the Roman name in terror, and were contented to remain quiet in their own territories, as soon as they heard of his death, immediately marched out of their own country, and prepared for a war with the Romans. Valentinian. on bring informed of this, made a proper disposition of his forces, and placed suitable garrisons in all the towns along the Rhine. Valentinian was enabled to make these arrangements by his experience in military affairs. . . . [T] he emperor Valentinian, having favourably disposed the affairs of Germany, made provisions for the future security of the Celtic nations. . . . Valentinian was now attacked by a disease which nearly cost him his life. Upon his recovery the countries requested him to appoint a successor, lest at his decease the commonwealth should be in danger. To this the emperor consented, and declared his son Gratian emperor and his associate in the government, although he was then very young, and not yet capable of the management of affairs. . . .

Valentinian, thinking he had sufficiently secured himself from a German war, acted towards his subjects with great severity, exacting from them exorbitant tributes, such as they had never before paid; under pretence that the military expenditure compelled him to have recourse to the public. Having thus acquired universal hatred, he became still more severe; nor would he enquire into the conduct of the magistrates, but was envious of all whe had the reputation of leading a blameless life. . . . For this cause, the Africans, who could not endure the excessive avarice of the person who held the military command in Mauritania, gave the purple robe to Firmus, and proclaimed him emperor. This doubtless gave much uneasiness to Valentinian, who immediately commanded some legions from the stations in Pannonia and Moesia, to embark for Africa. On this the Sarmatians and the Quadi, who had long entertained a hatred for Celestius, the governor of those countries, availing themselves, of the opportunity afforded by the departure of the legions for Africa, invaded the Pannonians and Moesians. . . . .

Valentinian, roused by the intelligence of these events, marched from Celtica into Illyricum, for the purpose of opposing the Quadi and the Sarmatians, and consigned the command of his forces to Merobaudes, who was a person of the greatest military experience. The winter continuing unusually late, the Quadi sent ambassadors to him with insolent and unbecoming messages. These so exasperated the emperor, that through the violence of his rage, the blood flowed from his head into his mouth, and suffocated him. He thus died after having resided in Illyricum nearly nine months, and after a reign of twelve years.
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1es Gratian39 views367-383

AE3

Pearl-diademed, draped and cuirassed bust right, D N GRATIANVS P F AVG
Gratian standing right, holding labarum with Chi-rho on banner, and holding captive by hair, GLORIA ROMANORVM; Q to left, K over P to right, DSISCR in ex.

RIC 14c

Zosimus reports: [T] he emperor Valentinian, having favourably disposed the affairs of Germany, made provisions for the future security of the Celtic nations. . . . Valentinian was now attacked by a disease which nearly cost him his life. Upon his recovery the countries requested him to appoint a successor, lest at his decease the commonwealth should be in danger. To this the emperor consented, and declared his son Gratian emperor and his associate in the government, although he was then very young, and not yet capable of the management of affairs. . . .

When the affairs of the empire were reduced to this low condition, Victor, who commanded the Roman cavalry, escaping the danger with some of his troops, entered Macedon and Thessaly. From thence he proceeded into Moesia and Pannonia, and informed Gratian, who was then in that quarter, of what had occurred, and of the loss of the emperor [Valens] and his army. Gratian received the intelligence without uneasiness, and was little grieved at the death of his uncle, a disagreement having existed between them. Finding himself unable to manage affairs, Thrace being ravaged by the Barbarians, as were likewise Pannonia and Moesia, and the towns upon the Rhine being infested by the neighbouring Barbarians without controul, he chose for his associate in the empire, Theodosius, who was a native of a town called Cauca, in the part of Spain called Hispania Callaecia, and who possessed great knowledge and experience of military affairs. Having given him the government of Thrace and the eastern provinces, Gratian himself proceeded to the west of Gaul, in order, if possible, to compose affairs in that quarter. . . .

While the affairs of Thrace were, thus situated, those of Gratian were in great perplexity. Having accepted the counsel of those courtiers who usually corrupt the manners of princes, he gave a reception to some fugitives called Alani, whom he not only introduced into his army, but honoured with valuable presents, and confided to them his most important secrets, esteeming his own soldiers of little value. This produced among his soldiers a violent hatred against him, which being gradually inflamed and augmented incited in them a disposition for innovation, and most particulary in that part of them which was in Britain, since they were the most resolute and vindictive. In this spirit they were encouraged by Maximus, a Spaniard, who had been the fellow-soldier of Theodosius in Britain. He was offended that Theodosius should be thought worthy of being made emperor, while he himself had no honourable employment. He therefore cherished the animosity of the soldiers towards the emperor. They were thus easily induced to revolt and to declare Maximus emperor. Having presented to him the purple robe and the diadem, they sailed to the mouth of the Rhine. As the German army, and all who were in that quarter approved of the election, Gratian prepared to contend against Maximus, with a considerable part of the army which still adhered to him. When the armies met, there were only slight skirmishes for five days; until Gratian, |115 perceiving that the Mauritanian cavalry first deserted from him and declared Maximus Augustus, and afterwards that the remainder of his troops by degrees espoused the cause of his antagonist, relinquished all hope, and fled with three hundred horse to the Alps. Finding those regions without defence, he proceeded towards Rhaetia, Noricum, Pannonia, and the Upper Moesia. When Maximus was informed of his route, he was not negligent of the opportunity, but detached Andragathius, commander of the cavalry, who was his faithful adherent, in pursuit of Gratian. This officer followed him with so great speed, that he overtook him when he was passing the bridge at Sigidunus, and put him to death.
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megalodon.jpg
2-3/4" Megalodon tooth. 30 viewsMegalodon Shark Tooth Fossil from Cape Fear river basin, North Carolina. Dark black root with nice blue-grey enamel. lived approximately 28 to 1.5 million years ago, during the Cenozoic Era (late Oligocene to early Pleistocene).1 commentsancientone
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20-10 BC Octavian and Agrippa175 viewsAugustus & Agrippa AE Dupondius
IMP DIVI F
back-to-back heads of Agrippa, wearing rostral crown, & Augustus, bare

COL NEM
palm shoot, crocodile before (not chained), two wreaths with long ties trailing above palm tip

Nemausus Mint
20-10 BC.

RPC 523

15.93g Heavy Early Issue!
5 commentsJay GT4
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20. J. Maesa antoninianus.14 viewsAntoninianus, 218 - 219 AD, Branch mint.
Obverse: IVLIA MAESA AVG / Bust of Julia Maesa on crescent.
Reverse: PIETAS AVG / Pietas standing, holding incense box and raising hand over lighted altar.
4.80 gm., 22 mm.
RIC #264; S #7748.

The coinage of Julia Maesa is fairly extensive. Coins with her portrait were minted at Antioch (and/or other Eastern mints) from the beginning of Elagabalus' reign until that mint was closed in 220. The mint at Rome minted her coins for the entire four year period of his reign, and possibly even into the reign of Severus Alexander as well.

There is only one type of antoninianus listed for Julia Maesa, and this is it. This coin was minted early in the reign of Elagabalus, before the denomination was discontinued. Although RIC lists this coin as being minted in Rome, it may well have been minted by a mint that traveled with Elagabalus on his journey to Rome 218 - 219 AD.
Callimachus
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200/2. Pinaria - as (155 BC)12 viewsAE As (Rome, 155 BC)
O/ Laureate head of Janus; I above.
R/ Prow right; NAT above; I before; ROMA below.
26.59g; 33mm
Crawford 200/2 (13 specimens in Paris)

* Pinarius Natta:

This moneyer came from the old patrician gens Pinaria (Cicero, De Divinatione, ii. 21). Despite its ancestry, this gens produced very few noteworthy members, although some of them are recorded until the empire.

The cognomen Natta is old; the first known Pinarius to bear it was Lucius Pinarius Natta, Magister Equitum in 363, and Praetor in 349 BC. Then, nobody else of that name is recorded until our moneyer, and his probable brother (RRC 208, 150 BC), who are both completely unknown apart from their coins. Finally, the last Natta of the Republic was a Pontifex in 56, brother-in-law to Clodius Pulcher, the famous Tribune (Cicero, Pro Domo, 118). It seems that the Nattae had lost their political influence early, but retained some religious duties until the end of the Republic, as Cicero says that they learnt "their sacred ceremonies from Hercules himself" (Pro Domo, 134).

The Pinarii indeed claimed to descend from a mythical Pinarius, who had welcomed Hercules with a banquet when he came to Latium (Livy, i. 7). This myth was so deeply stuck in the Roman mythology that it was still used by Caracalla on an unique aureus (leu 93, lot 68).
Joss
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201. Septimus Severus25 viewsPax seated on rev., a scarcer type, so either

RIC 724, bust var., IMP VIII / TR P IIII (later 196),

RIC 727, IMP VIII / TR P V (early 197), or

RIC 730a, IMP VIIII / TR P V (c. late spring 197, a mule from an old rev. die).
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201b. Clodius Albinus232 viewsBy the time Severus made it back from the east in 196, the breach with Albinus was beyond repair. The emperor's son Caracalla had been displayed to the army as Caesar and heir. Albinus had been proclaimed emperor and gone into open revolt, crossed the English Channel and gained the support of many aristocrats from Gaul and Spain. Lyon became Albinus' headquarters, from which he minted coins that wishfully hinted at reconciliation. Albinus had taken the title of Augustus, but he still kept the name Septimius.

Albinus was unable to expand his control eastward despite achieving a victory against the governor of Lower Germany. By the middle of the year 196, his momentum had stalled. Gaul was drenched in the blood of Roman soldiers as the two sides repeatedly engaged in indecisive battles.[[8]] The ever increasing chaos in the region even allowed an opportunist to raise his own army to harass Albinus' troops.[[9]]

Time was running out for Albinus. His troops were defeated early in 197 at Tournus, on the river Saône 65 miles north of Lyon.[[10]] Severus could now sweep his armies into Gaul. Albinus retreated to Lyon, where he prepared for one final stand. The battle, one of the fiercest in Roman history, took place 19 February 197 and involved more than 100,000 men.[[11]] In the initial fighting, Albinus' troops forced the Severans into retreat, during which Severus fell off his horse. But Albinus' success was shortlived. The Severan cavalry appeared, and Albinus' army was routed. The battlefield was strewn with bodies, and Severus' victorious troops were allowed to vent their anger by sacking Lyon. Albinus, who was trapped in a house along the river Rhône, committed suicide. Heis wife and children were be ordered killed by Severus, who also had Albinus' head cut off and sent to Rome for display.

Clodius Albinus had the breeding and upbringing to have been a popular emperor among the senatorial aristocracy, but he lacked the cunning and daring of his erstwhile ally and eventual rival Severus. Albinus would never be included among the canonical list of emperors, and his defeat finally ended the period of instability and civil war that originated with the death of Commodus.

CLODIUS ALBINUS, as Caesar. 193-195 AD. AR Denarius (17mm, 3.14 gm). Rome mint. Bare head right / Roma seated left on shield, holding Victory and reversed spear. RIC IV 11b; RSC 61a. VF. Ex - CNG
2 commentsecoli73
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201c. Pescennius Niger128 viewsGaius Pescennius Niger was governor of Syria in the year 193 when he learned of the emperor Pertinax's murder. Niger's subsequent attempt to claim the empire for himself ended in failure in Syria after roughly one year. His life before becoming governor of Syria is not well known. He was born in Italy to an equestrian family. He seems to have been older than his eventual rival Septimius Severus, so his birth should perhaps be placed ca. AD 135-40. Niger may have held an important position in the administration of Egypt. He won renown, along with Clodius Albinus, for participation in a military campaign in Dacia early in Commodus' reign. Although Niger could have been adlected into the senate before the Dacian campaign, he was by now pursuing a senatorial career and must have been held in high esteem by Commodus. Niger was made a suffect consul, probably in the late 180s, and he was sent as governor to the important province of Syria in 191.

Niger was a well-known and well-liked figure to the Roman populace. After Pertinax became emperor at the beginning of 193, many in Rome may have hoped that the elderly Pertinax would adopt Niger as his Caesar and heir, but Pertinax was murdered without having made succession plans. When Didius Julianus arrived at the senate house on 29 March 193, his first full day as emperor, a riot broke out among the Roman crowd. The rioters took over the Circus Maximus, from which they shouted for Niger to seize the throne. The rioters dispersed the following day, but a report of their demonstration may well have arrived in the Syrian capital, Antioch, with the news that Pertinax had been murdered and replaced by Julianus.

Spurred into action by the news, Niger had himself proclaimed emperor in Antioch. The governors of the other eastern provinces quickly joined his cause. Niger's most important ally was the respected proconsul of Asia, Asellius Aemilianus, and support began to spread across the Propontis into Europe. Byzantium welcomed Niger, who now was preparing further advances. Niger took the additional cognomen Justus, "the Just." Justice was promoted as the theme of his intended reign, and personifications of Justice appeared on his coins.

Other provincial governors, however, also set their sights on replacing Julianus. Albinus in Britain and Septimius Severus in Upper Pannonia (western Hungary) had each aspired to the purple, and Severus was marching an army on Rome. Severus was still 50 miles from the city when the last of Julianus' dwindling authority disappeared. Julianus was killed in Rome 1 June 193.

Niger sent messengers to Rome to announce his acclamation, but those messengers were intercepted by Severus. A deal was struck between Severus and Albinus that kept Albinus in Britain with the title of Caesar. The larger armies of the western provinces were now united in their support for Severus. Niger's support was confined to the east. Severus had Niger's children captured and held as hostages, and a legion was sent to confront Niger's army in Thrace.

The first conflict between the rival armies took place near Perinthus. Although Niger's forces may have inflicted greater casualties on the Severan troops, Niger was unable to secure his advance; he returned to Byzantium. By the autumn of 193, Severus had left Rome and arrived in the region, though his armies there continued to be commanded by supporters. Niger was offered the chance of a safe exile by Severus, but Niger refused.

Severan troops crossed into Asia at the Hellespont and near Cyzicus engaged forces supporting Niger under the command of Aemilianus. Niger's troops were defeated. Aemilianus attempted to flee but was captured and killed. Not long after, in late December 193 or early January 194, Niger was defeated in a battle near Nicaea and fled south to Antioch. Eastern provincial governors now switched their loyalty to Severus, and Niger faced revolts even in Syria. By late spring 194, the Severan armies were in Cilicia preparing to enter Syria. Niger and his army met the Severan troops near Issus. The battle was a decisive defeat for Niger, who fled back to Antioch. The Syrian capital that only one year earlier had cheered as Niger was proclaimed emperor now waited in fear for the approach of its new master. Niger prepared to flee once more, but outside Antioch he was captured and killed.

Despite his popularity with the Roman mob, Pescennius Niger lacked both the strong loyalty of other senatorial commanders and the number of soldiers that his rival Severus enjoyed. Niger was ultimately unable to make himself the true avenger of Pertinax, and his roughly one-year control of the eastern provinces never qualified him to be reckoned a legitimate emperor.

BITHYNIA, Caesarea. Pescennius Niger. AD 193-194. Æ 22mm (6.35 g). Laureate head right / KAICAREIAC GERMANIKHC, coiled serpent left. RG p. 282, 9, pl. XLIV, 8 (same dies); SNG Copenhagen -; SNG von Aulock -. Near VF, brown patina, rough surfaces. Very rare. Ex-CNG
2 commentsecoli
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202. CARACALLA256 viewsCARACALLA. 198-217 AD.

The emperor visited Alexandria for intellectual and religious reasons, staying at the Serapeum and being present at the temple's sacrifices and cultural events. Earlier, during the German war, the emperor visited the shrine of the Celtic healing-god Grannus. Caracalla also visited the famous temple of Asclepius in Pergamum and fully participated in its program, which involved sleeping inside the temple compound and having his dreams interpreted.

It was this religious devotion that led to Caracalla's murder in 217. Although suspicious of the praetorian prefect Macrinus, Caracalla allowed himself to be accompanied by only a small, select corps of bodyguards on an early spring trip from the camp at Edessa to the temple of the moon-god at Carrhae, about 25 miles away. During the journey back on 8 April 217, Caracalla was killed. The returning guards claimed the emperor was ambushed while defecating, and that the alleged assassin was one of their own, a soldier named Martialis. Martialis was himself killed by the avenging guards, or so the story went. Suspicion was strong that Macrinus arranged the entire affair.

Caracalla's violent end seemed appropriate for an emperor who, early in his reign, had his own brother killed. Yet the moralizing about fratricide by both ancient and modern historians obscures the energetic, reformist and even intellectual character of Caracalla's reign. Some of the reforms, especially the pay raise for soldiers, would prove burdensome for future emperors, but the changes brought about in the little more than five years of Caracalla's sole rule would have long-lasting implications throughout the empire for generations to come.

AR Denarius (19mm, 3.11 gm). Struck 215 AD. ANTONINVS PIVS AVG GERM, laureate head right / P M TR P XVIII COS IIII PP, Sol standing left, radiate, raising right hand and holding globe. RIC IV 264a; BMCRE 139; RSC 288. EF
Ex - CNG
2 commentsecoli73
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203. MACRINUS192 viewsMACRINUS. 217-218 AD.

Caracalla's mother, Julia Domna, had toyed with the idea of raising a rebellion against Macrinus shortly after her son's murder, but the empress was uncertain of success and already suffering from breast cancer. She chose to starve herself to death instead.

The grandchildren of her sister, Julia Maesa, would become the focus of the successful uprising that began on 15 May 218. Her 14-year-old grandson Avitus (known to history as Elagabalus) was proclaimed emperor by one the legions camped near the family's hometown of Emesa. Other troops quickly joined the rebellion, but Macrinus marshalled loyal soldiers to crush the revolt. Macrinus also promoted his son to the rank of emperor.

The forces met in a village outside Antioch on 8 June 218. Despite the inexperience of the leaders of the rebel army, Macrinus was defeated. He sent his son, Diadumenianus, with an ambassador to the Parthian king, while Macrinus himself prepared to flee to Rome. Macrinus traveled across Asia Minor disguised as a courier and nearly made it to Europe, but he was captured in Chalcedon. Macrinus was transported to Cappadocia, where he was executed. Diadumenianus had also been captured (at Zeugma) and was similarly put to death.

Contemporaries tended to portray Macrinus as a fear-driven parvenu who was able to make himself emperor but was incapable of the leadership required by the job. An able administrator, Macrinus lacked the aristocratic connections and personal bravado that might have won him legitimacy. His short reign represented a brief interlude of Parthian success during what would prove the final decade of the Parthian empire.

AR Denarius (18mm 3.55 gm). IMP C M OPEL SEV MACRINVS AVG, laureate and cuirassed bust with short beard right / SALVS PVBLICA, Salus seated left, feeding snake rising up from altar, holding sceptre in left. RIC IV 86; Good VF; Ex-CNG
2 commentsecoli73
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204. Elagabalus29 viewsElagabalus was and is one of the most controversial Roman emperors. During his reign he showed a disregard for Roman religious traditions and sexual taboos. Elagabalus' name is a Latinized form of the Semitic deity El-Gabal, a manifestation of the Semitic deity Ēl. He replaced Jupiter, head of the Roman pantheon, with a new god, Deus Sol Invictus, which in Latin means "the Sun, God Unconquered". Elagabalus forced leading members of Rome's government to participate in religious rites celebrating Sol invictus which he personally led.

He also took a Vestal Virgin as one of a succession of wives and openly boasted that his sexual interest in men was more than just a casual pastime, as it had been for previous emperors.

Elagabalus developed a reputation among his contemporaries for eccentricity, decadence, and zealotry which was likely exaggerated by his successors. This black propaganda was passed on and as such he was one of the most reviled Roman emperors to early Christian historians and later became a hero to the Decadent movement of the late 19th century.

Elagabalus Denarius. IMP ANTONINVS PIVS AVG, horned, laureate, and draped bust right / PM TR P IIII COS III P P, Elagabalus standing left sacrificing out of patera over lighted altar & holding branch, star left. RIC 46, RSC 196
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205. Severus Alexander27 viewsSeverus Alexander

A child when chance brought him to the principate, with only two recommendations, that he was different from Elagabalus and that he was part of the Severan family, he proved to be inadequate for the challenges of the time. Military experience was the prime attribute of an emperor now, which Alexander did not have, and that lack ultimately cost him his life. Guided by his mother and employing the services of distinguished men, he returned dignity to the imperial household and to the state. He did the best he could, but that best was not good enough in the early decades of the third century A.D., with the great threats from east and north challenging Rome's primacy and, indeed, existence.

Denarius. IMP SEV ALEXAND AVG, laureate head right / VICTORIA AVG, Victory standing left with wreath. RSC 556.
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209 AD - GETA Caesar denarius18 viewsobv: P SEPTIMIVS GETA CAES (draped, slight bearded bust right)
rev: PONTIF COS II (Genius standing left, holding patera over lit altar & corn ears)
ref: RIC IVi 59a, RSC 114a, BMC 584
mint: Rome, struck early 209
3.3gms, 20mm
berserker
21-Alex-Roman-Macedonia.jpg
21. Roman Macedon: Tetradrachm in the name of Alexander the Great.41 viewsTetradrachm, ca 90 - 75 BC, Thessalonika mint.
Obverse: ΜΑΚΕΔΟΝΩΝ / Head of Alexander, wearing the Horn of Ammon.
Θ behind.
Reverse: AESILLAS Q / Club between money-chest and quaesteor's chair, all in olive-wreath.
16.23 gm., 29 mm.
S. #1463.

The dating of this series is far from certain. The traditional theory of ca 94 - 88 BC is supported by Athenian overstrikes. Others favor dates from the mid- 80s BC through the early 60s BC.
1 commentsCallimachus
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22. Celtic Alexander Tetradrachm (?)45 viewsTetradrachm, ca 2'nd century BC, Danube region.
Obverse: Head of Alexander as Herakles, wearing lion's skin headdress.
Reverse: ΑΛΕΞΑΝΔΡΟΥ / Zeus sitting, holding his attendant eagle and sceptre. Tripod at left.
17.25 gm., 28 mm.

In researching this coin, I found five coins which are from the same pair of dies as this one. These are the only examples of this type (tripod on reverse) that I've been able to find.

1. Palladium sale #10 (Nov. 1995), attributed to the mint at Pella and catalogued as Muller #146.

2. Palladium sale #11 (April 1996), described as "unlisted in Price, and apparently unknown before a recent hoard find. Variant of Price 633."

3. CNG sale #54, lot 99, described as a Celtic imitation of Alexander's coinage from the Danube region, ca 2'nd century BC. c.f. Goble, OTA, 566. This is the coin pictured above.

4. CNG sale #72, lot 13, described as "Celtic, Lower Danube, uncertain tribe, early 3'rd century BC . . . . Unpublished in the standard references . . . . By virtue of its style, fabric, and weight, this Alexander imitation is certainly an early issue, probably struck during the first decades of the third century BC."

5. Harlan J Berk 156th Buy or Bid Sale (Oct. 2007), lot 75, described as "Possibly unpublished . . . Somewhat unusual style on the obverse."

Five coins from the same pair or dies, five different attributions. I will agree, though, with the last statement of coin #4 above, that this appears to be an early issue. This coin is on a thick flan resembling coins minted during Alexander's lifetime and immediately thereafter and is made from good silver. There is something a bit barbaric about the style of this coin, although there are genuine Alexander coins listed and pictured in Martin J. Price's book which are more barbaric than this one. An interesting coin.
1 commentsCallimachus
22124a.jpg
22124 Lesbos/Rooster17 viewsLESBOS. Methymna. Hemiobol
(Circa 500/480-460 BC).
Obv: Female head right, with hair in sakkos.
Rev: MAΘ.
Cock standing right within incuse square.
Ex Savoca 17th Blue Auction Lot 581
Rare Condition: Nearly Very fine.
Weight: 0.20 g.Diameter: 7 mm
Blayne W
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24. Alfred.35 viewsPenny, first coinage 871-875, mint ?.
Obverse: +AELBRED REX / bust of Alfred.
Reverse: MON / EALHERE / ETA
Moneyer: Ealhere.
1.21 gm., 19 mm.
North #627; Seaby #1057.

The similarities of the lunnettes coinage of Burgred and the first coinage of Alfred has long been noted. There is evidence of an agreement between Mercia and Wessex to produce a unified coinage in the two states. This agreement was continued by Burgred and Alfred. At the beginning of Alfred's reign in 871, there were just two mints operating in Mercia and Wessex: London and Canterbury. Philip Grierson, in his book Medieval European Coinage: Volume 1, The Early Middle Ages, has Ealhere a moneyer in Canterbury.

A more detailed analysis of Alfred's coinage comes to a different conclusion. The Lunettes Coinage of Alfred the Great by A. W. Lyons & W. A. Mackay (2008, BNJ 78, 4) places this obverse die in Group 2 Mercian Style Lunettes, variant IV: "Horizonal bust." Characteristics: Bust lacks a bonnet, the hair is comprised of several horizontal lines usually ending in pellets and sloping between 45 to 60 degrees. Double-banded diadem surmounted by a crescent. Distinctively cut "wedge" lips. The eye is a small circle with a dot in the center.

The reverse die of this coin is Lunettes type C (illustrated under Burgred in North, p. 67.) However, Table 2B does not show the moneyer Ealhere using reverse type Lunette C. So coins with this die combination were evidentally not known to Lyons & Mackay.

Table 2D, listing all the moneyers of Alfred's Lunette coinage, says Ealhere used obverse dies of Group 1 variant I, and Group 2 variant IV (the obverse die on this coin). Lyons & Mackay suggest that Ealhere was located in central or west Wessex as he used London and Canterbury dies.
Callimachus
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249/3. Maenia - quadrans (133 BC)13 viewsAE Quadrans (Rome, 132 BC)
O/ Head of Hercules right, wearing lion's skin; 3 pellets behind.
R/ P MAE ANT M F above prow right; 3 pellets before; ROMA below.
4.65g, 19mm
Crawford 249/3 (28 specimens in Paris)
- Ex-Thersites Collection (bought on 18 April 1986)
- Roma Numismatics, e-sale 33, lot 336.

* Publius Maenius M.f. Antiaticus:

Antiaticus belonged to the plebeian gens Maenia, but his relatives are not known. Other Maenii are recorded in the 2nd century, such as Titus, Gaius, and Quintus Maenius, Praetors respectively in 186, 180, and 170, or Publius Maenius, moneyer in 194-190. However, Antiaticus mentioned on his coins that he was the son of Marcus, who is not known, and none of the aforementioned Maenii shared his cognomen.

Antiaticus must have therefore belonged to another branch of the gens, which descended from Gaius Maenius, Consul in 338, Dictator in 320 and 314, who defeated the Volsci by taking their city of Antium in 338, thus putting an end to the Second Latin War and also the conquest of Latium. The cognomen Antiaticus comes from this victory, for which Gaius Maenius was also rewarded by a statue on the Forum, possibly at the top of a column (Cicero, Pro Sestio, 58; Livy, VIII, 13).

The life of Antiaticus is still very obscure, and it seems he did not hold other office. He is only known through his coins.

Eckel read ME at the end of this legend and conjectured that it might have been the first letters of an agnomen Megellus or Medulinus (V, p. 240-1), but it seems very unlikely that a moneyer could have received an agnomen so early in his career. Perhaps Eckhel could not see good examples of this type; in any case, the legend on this coin clearly reads as MF, for "Marcus filius".
Joss
24e-Constantine-Her-092.jpg
24e. Constantine: Heraclea.17 viewsAE3, 327 - 329, Heraclea mint.
Obverse: CONSANTINVS AVG / Diademed bust of Constantine, "Eyes to God."
Reverse: D N CONSTANTINI MAX AVG / Laurel wreath enclosing VOT XXX.
Mint mark: .SMHB
3.42 gm., 18.5 mm.
RIC #92; LRBC #887; Sear #16231.

Eusebius stated that Constantine had himself depicted in the attitude of prayer on his coins. Since early Christians prayed looking up to Heaven, this obverse portrait is the one which Eusebius saw. Thus the phrase "Eyes to God" became associated with this portrait. We have no proof that Eusebius' statement is true; indeed the portrait could have been based on the way various Hellenistic kings portrayed themselves on their own coins. However, Eusebius' statement likely reflected the popular opinion of his time.

The "Eyes to God" portrait was used intermittently on gold and silver coinages from 324 to 337. It's use on the bronze coinage is limited to just three mints: Constantinople (Daphne coinage, 328), Cyzicus (Campgate coinage 328-29), and Heraclea (VOT XXX coinage, 325-26, 327-329).
Callimachus
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26. Antiochos III.72 viewsTetradrachm, 223 - 213 BC, Antioch mint.
Obverse: Diademed head of Antiochus III with very youthful features.
Reverse: ΒΑΣΙΛΕΟΣ ΑΝΤΙΟΧΟΥ / Apollo seated on omphalos, holding arrow in right hand, left hand resting on bow, Two monograms: one at left, one at right.
16.84 gm., 29 mm.
WSM #1053; S. #6933/4.

Antiochus was 18 or 19 years old when he became king. Since this coin shows him with very youthful features, it was likely issued early on in his reign. E.T. Newell (in WSM) assigns this coin to "series 1" which runs from 223 - 213 BC.
2 commentsCallimachus
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268-270 AD - CLAUDIUS II (GOTHICUS) AE antoninianus58 viewsobv: DIVO CLAVDIO (radiate head right)
rev: CONSECRATIO (eagle standing front, wings spread, head right)
ref: RIC Vi 266 (C), Cohen 43
mint: Rome
3.36gms, 19mm

Claudius II issued after his death by Quintillus and later emperors.
History: Late in 269 Claudius was preparing to go to war against the german Vandals tribe, who were raiding in Pannonia. Next year the pannonian legions led by Claudius defeated the Vandals, but the Emperor fell victim to an epidemic of plague and died in Sirmium early in August of 270. The Senate immediately deified Claudius as "Divus Claudius Gothicus", making him one of the few Roman emperors of the period to be so honored.
berserker
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28. Antiochos-VII.27 viewsTetradrachm, 138-129 BC.
Obverse: Diademed head of Antiochos VII.
Reverse: ΒΑΣΙΛΕΟΣ ΑΝΤΙΟΧΟΥ ΕΥΕΡΓΕΤΟΥ / Athena standing, holding Nike, spear, and shield. Monogram and A at left, O at right.
16.81 gm., 27 mm.

This coin was purchased in 1997 as a tetradrachm of Antiochus VII before the posthumous tetradrachms of Antiochus VII were identified. 

In 2002 a tetradrachm was discovered that bore a portrait of Antiochus VII but was in the name of Ariarathese VII of Cappadocia.  Research eventually die-linked tetradrachms of Antiochus VII to those of Ariarathese VII, and concluded that numerous tetradrachms in the name of Antiochus VII were actually issued by Ariarathese VII around 104-102 BC. This research was published as Cappadician Tetradrachms in the Name of Antiochus VII by Catharine Lorber and Arthur Houghton (NC 166, 2006).

Recently Elke Krengle and Catharine Lorber published Early Cappadocian Tetradrachms in the Name of Antiochus VII.  This is a more in-depth look at these tetradrachms, and this coin is listed there:

See table 1 on p. 65, and plate 11:
Mint II, Emission 5: control mark O, #117-171. All the dies are not illustrated, so I do not know exactly which number between 117 and 171 is actually this coin.
Callimachus
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28229 viewsCarus 282-3 AD
AE antoninianus
IMP C M AVR CARVS PF AVG
Radiate, draped and cuirassed bust right
VIRTVS AVG
Mars stg right, leaning on shield
-/-//-
RIC -
RIC ascribes this coin to Lugdunum (RIC 27), but that is an attribution I am uncomfortable with. The lettering style is quite clearly not Lugdunum. The mint is that of Ticinum and the type unrecorded in RIC although at least one other example from the same reverse die is known (Thanks Ed D and Curtis).
mauseus
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2nd Century Bearded Broad Axe. Found in germany.32 views2nd Century Bearded Broad Axe. Found in Germany.
Sold as a 'Battle’ axe. Possibly used as such.
Pictures from left to right tell a story.

# Left picture - whole axe weighs 465g, Making it quite light for its type.

# 2nd from the left shows clearly where the high grade iron (steel) has been forged to the Low grade Iron that makes up the bulk of the axe. The high grade steel on the cutting edge would stay sharper for longer, but was expensive and time consuming to make.

# 3rd from the left picture shows the axe bends to the left (rear to front view). This tells me the owner was right handed and the axe has bent this way through right handed working.

# The last picture is interesting. the cut marks have been made by something (a sword or another axe, maybe) hitting it from the side. These marks are typical of steel to steel blows.

The axe was found somewhere in southern Germany, but I cannot confirm exact location.
X-ray and radio carbon dating will be conducted on all of my axes as money permits.
lorry66
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3 Innocent XII 1693 Half Piastre M 3437 viewsAn interesting half piastre featuring a pelican as a symbol of self sacrifice. Early church fathers believed the blood on the bird was result of the pelican pecking her own breast to feed her young, as shown on the reverse. Combined with the inspirational legend "not for self, but for others" this was an obvious reference to Christ as model for believers to follow. Lovely and powerful sentiment, but unfortunately the blood is actually the result of captured fish which the pelican had broken up to feed to her chicks. Still, powerful imagery and a great example of the minters art at the end of the 17th century. stlnats
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3) The Tyrannicides: Brutus19 viewsMARCUS JUNIUS BRUTUS
Moneyer
AR Denarius. (3.5g), 54 BC.

BRVTVS, bare head of L Junius Brutus right / AHALA, bare head of C Servilius Ahala right.

Syd 907, Cr433/2, Junia30; aF

Marcus Junius Brutus (early June, 85 BC – 23 October, 42 BC), often referred to as Brutus, was a politician of the late Roman Republic. He is best known in modern times for taking a leading role in the assassination of Julius Caesar ten years after this coin was minted.
RM0032
Sosius
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3-3/4" Trilobite27 viewsTrilobites form one of the earliest known groups of arthropods. The first appearance of trilobites in the fossil record defines the base of the Atdabanian stage of the Early Cambrian period (521 million years ago), and they flourished throughout the lower Paleozoic era before beginning a drawn-out decline to extinction when, during the Devonian, all trilobite orders except Proetida died out. Trilobites finally disappeared in the mass extinction at the end of the Permian about 250 million years ago. The trilobites were among the most successful of all early animals, roaming the oceans for over 270 million years.ancientone
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3. Hadrian147 viewsHadrian, AR Denarius, Late 125-Early 128, Rome
Obverse- HADRIANVS-AVGVSTVS
Laureate head right, slight drapery on left shoulder
Reverse- CO_S-III
Roma standing left, Victory in right hand, spear in left
18mm x 19mm, 3.19g
RIC II, 161
3 commentsb70
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305. Trajan Decius32 viewsTrajan Decius

Decius' reign was not well-suited to the demands of a rapidly changing empire.[[45]] Conservatism may have been popular among a certain portion of the Roman elite, but the old aristocracy's power and influence all but disappeared in the third century. Decius clearly had a broader vision of what he wanted to accomplish in his reign than many of his contemporaries, and certainly he was vigorous, but he was also a man who was not sufficiently flexible when the moment called for it. His religious policy caused major disruptions in Rome and; in contrast to some of the other barracks emperors, Decius proved himself less than apt when dealing with Rome's Germanic foes. His death may have been heroic, but it was unnecessary and unsuccessful.

AR Antoninianus. IMP CMQ TRAIANUS DECIUS AUG, radiate, draped & cuirassed bust right /PANNONIAE, the two Pannoniae standing front with standards. RIC 21b, RSC 86
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306. Trebonianus Gallus28 viewsGaius Vibius Trebonianus Gallus (206 - August, 253), was Roman emperor from 251 to 253, in a joint rule with his son Volusianus.

Gallus was born in Italy, in a family with respected ancestry and a senatorial background. He had two children in his marriage with Afinia Gemina Baebiana: the future emperor Gaius Vibius Volusianus and a daughter, Vibia Galla. His early career was typical with several appointments, both political and military. He was suffect consul and in 250 was nominated governor of the Roman province of Moesia Superior, an appointment that showed the confidence of emperor Trajan Decius in him. In Moesia, Gallus was a key figure in repelling the frequent invasion attacks by the Gothic tribes of the Danube and became popular with the army.

On July 1, 251, Decius and his co-emperor and son Herennius Etruscus died in the battle of Abrittus, at the hands of the Goths they were supposed to punish for raids into the empire. When the army heard the news, the soldiers proclaimed Gallus emperor, despite Hostilian, Decius' surviving son, ascending the imperial throne in Rome. Gallus did not back down from his intention to became emperor, but accepted Hostilian as co-emperor, perhaps to avoid the damage of another civil war. While Gallus marched on Rome, an outbreak of plague struck the city and killed the young Hostilian. With absolute power now on his hands, Gallus nominated his son Volusianus co-emperor.

Eager to show himself competent and gain popularity with the citizens, Gallus swiftly dealt with the epidemic, providing burial for the victims. Gallus is often accused of persecuting the Christians, but the only solid evidence of this allegation is the imprisoning of Pope Cornelius in 252.

Like his predecessors, Gallus did not have an easy reign. In the East, king Shapur I of Persia invaded and conquered the province of Syria, without any response from Rome. On the Danube, the Gothic tribes were once again on the loose, despite the peace treaty signed in 251. The army was not pleased with the emperor and when Aemilianus, governor of Moesia Superior and Pannonia, took the initiative of battle and defeated the Goths, the soldiers proclaimed him emperor. With a usurper threatening the throne, Gallus prepared for a fight. He recalled several legions and ordered reinforcements to return to Rome from the Rhine frontier. Despite these dispositions, Aemilianus marched onto Italy ready to fight for his claim. Gallus did not have the chance to face him in battle: he and Volusianus were murdered by their own troops in August 253.
ecoli
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308-324 AD - Licinius I - RIC VI Heraclea 73 - IOVI CONSERVATORI AVGG30 viewsEmperor: Licinius I (r. 308-324 AD)
Date: early 313 AD
Condition: Fair/Fine
Denomination: Follis

Obverse: IMP C VAL LICIN LICINIVS PF AVG
Imperator Caesar Valerius Licinianus Licinius Dutiful and Wise Emperor
Head right; laureate

Reverse: IOVI CONSER-VATORI AVGG
To Jupiter, Protector of the Emperors.
Jupiter standing facing, head left, chlamys hanging from left shoulder, right holding Victory on globe, left leaning on sceptre; eagle with wreath in beak at feet to left.
"Δ" in right field (fourth officina)
Exergue: SMHT (Heraclea mint)

RIC VI Heraclea 73; VM 25
2.14g; 20.4mm; 345°
Pep
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308. Valerian I23 viewsRIC 209 Valerian I 253-260 AD AR Antoninianus of Moesia. Radiate draped bust/Aequitas standing holding balance and cornucopia.

Publius Licinius Valerianus (ca. 200-260), known in English as Valerian, was Roman emperor from 253 to 260. His full Latin title was IMPERATOR · CAESAR · PVBLIVS · LICINIVS · VALERIANVS · PIVS FELIX · INVICTVS · AVGVSTVS — in English, "Emperor Caesar Publius Licinus Valerianus Pious Lucky Undefeated Augustus."

Unlike the majority of the usurpers of the crisis of the third century, Valerian was of a noble and traditional Senatorial family. Details of his early life are elusive, but his marriage to Egnatia Mariniana who gave him two sons: Publius Licinius Egnatius Gallienus and Valerianus Minor is known.

In 238 he was princeps senatus, and Gordian I negotiated through him for Senatorial acknowledgement for his claim as Emperor. In 251, when Decius revived the censorship with legislative and executive powers so extensive that it practically embraced the civil authority of the Emperor, Valerian was chosen censor by the Senate. Under Decius he was nominated governor of the Rhine provinces of Noricum and Raetia and retained the confidence of his successor, Trebonianus Gallus, who asked him for reinforcements to quell the rebellion of Aemilianus in 253. Valerian headed south, but was too late: Gallus' own troops killed him and joined Aemilianus before his arrival. The Raetian soldiers then proclaimed Valerian emperor and continued their march towards Rome. At the time of his arrival in September, Aemilianus' legions defected, killing him and proclaiming Valerian emperor. In Rome, the Senate quickly acknowledged him, not only for fear of reprisals, but also because he was one of their own.

Valerian's first act as emperor was to make his son Gallienus colleague. In the beginning of his reign the affairs in Europe went from bad to worse and the whole West fell into disorder. In the East, Antioch had fallen into the hands of a Persian vassal, Armenia was occupied by Shapur I (Sapor). Valerian and Gallienus split the problems of the Empire between the two, with the son taking the West and the father heading East to face the Persian threat.

By 257, Valerian had already recovered Antioch and returned the Syrian province to Roman control but in the following year, the Goths ravaged Asia Minor. Later in 259, he moved to Edessa, but an outbreak of plague killed a critical number of legionaries, weakening the Roman position. Valerian was then forced to seek terms with Shapur I. Sometime towards the end of 259, or at the beginning of 260, Valerian was defeated and made prisoner by the Persians (making him the only Roman Emperor taken captive). It is said that he was subjected to the greatest insults by his captors, such as being used as a human stepladder by Shapur when mounting his horse. After his death in captivity, his skin was stuffed with straw and preserved as a trophy in the chief Persian temple. Only after Persian defeat in last Persia-Roman war three and a half centuries later was his skin destroyed.
ecoli
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309. Gallienus33 viewsOne of the key characteristics of the Crisis of the Third Century was the inability of the Emperors to maintain their hold on the Imperium for any marked length of time. An exception to this rule was the reign of the Emperor Gallienus. The fact that Gallienus served as junior Emperor with his father, Valerian, from 253 to 260 may have had something to do with his successes. Father and son each wielded his authority over a smaller area, thus allowing for more flexible control and imperial presence. Another, more probable reason, lay in Gallienus's success in convincing Rome that he was the best man for the job. However, Gallienus had to handle many rebellions of the so-called "Gallienus usurpers".

In 260, Valerian was taken prisoner by Sapor, King of Persia while trying to negotiate a peace settlement. Although aware that his father had been taken alive (the only Emperor to have suffered this fate), Gallienus did not make public Valerian's death until a year later. His decision hinged on the fact that Romans believed that their fate rose and fell with the fate of the Emperor, which in turn depended upon his demonstrating the proper amount of piety (Latin pietas) to the gods and maintaining their favor. A defeated Emperor would surely have meant that the gods had forsaken Valerian and, by extension, Gallienus.

Gallienus's chief method of reinforcing his position is seen in the coinage produced during his reign (see Roman currency). The coinage provides clear evidence of a successful propaganda campaign. Gallienus took pains to make sure that he was regularly represented as victorious, merciful, and pious. The people who used these coins on a daily basis saw these messages and, with little evidence to the contrary, remained supportive of their Emperor.

There were, however, those who knew better. During Gallienus' reign, there was constant fighting on the western fringes of the Empire. As early as 258, Gallienus had lost control over a large part of Gaul, where another general, Postumus, had declared his own realm (typically known today as the Gallic Empire). As Gallienus' influence waned, another general came to the fore. In time-honored tradition, Claudius II Gothicus gained the loyalty of the army and succeeded Gallienus to the Imperium.

In the months leading up to his mysterious death in September of 268, Gallienus was ironically orchestrating the greatest achievements of his reign. An invasion of Goths into the province of Pannonia was leading to disaster and even threatening Rome, while at the same time, the Alamanni were raising havoc in the northern part of Italy. Gallienus halted the Allamanic progress by defeating them in battle in April of 268, then turned north and won several victories over the Goths. That fall, he turned on the Goths once again, and in September, either he or Claudius, his leading general, led the Roman army to victory (although the cavalry commander Aurelian was the real victor) at the Battle of Naissus.

At some time following this battle, Gallienus was murdered during the siege of usurper Aureolus in Mediolanum; many theories abound that Claudius and Aurelian conspired to have the emperor killed. Be that as it may, Claudius spared the lives of Gallienus' family — Gallienus' wife, Iulia Cornelia Salonina, had given him three sons: Valerianus (who died in 258), Saloninus (died in 260 after becoming co-emperor), and Egnatius Marinianus — and had the emperor deified.

Gallienus Antoninianus - Minerva
OBVERSE: GALLIENVS AVG, radiate, cuirassed bust right
REVERSE: MINERVA AVG, Minerva standing right with spear and shield.
23mm - 3.7 grams
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311a. Aureolus8 viewsAureolus. Romano-Gallic Usurper, AD 267-268. Antoninianus (19mm, 2.17 g, 7h). Struck in the name of Postumus. Mediolanum (Milan) mint, 2nd officina. 3rd emission, mid AD 268. Radiate, draped, and cuirassed bust of Postumus right / Concordia standing left, holding patera and rudder; prow of galley to left; S. RIC V (Postumus) 373; Mairat 215-21; AGK (Postumus) 6b; RSC (Postumus) 19. Near VF, dark brown patina.

Aureolus was an extraordinarily capable general who served under Valerian and Gallienus. Around AD 258, Gallienus stationed a new cavalry unit at Mediolanum that was to serve as a quick reaction force against any new invasions along the frontier of the central empire. Aureolus was given command of this unit. In AD 260-261 his forces defeated the armies of the usurpers Ingenuus and Macrianus, and recovered the province of Raetia. Following these victories, Gallienus and Aureolus led a Roman army against the breakaway Gallic provinces under Postumus. Gallienus was forced to leave the field after being injured in battle, and left the campaign in the hands of Aureolus. Aureolus ended the campaign shortly thereafter, and while the reason is uncertain, the historical record suggests it was due to either his incompetence or else treachery (he had come to a secret agreement with Postumus). While the former seems unlikely, given Aureolus’ record, the latter is possible, as there are indications that he had been preparing for a revolt as early as AD 262. Regardless, at some point in AD 267, Aureolus revolted and established his base at Mediolanum, where Gallienus besieged him in AD 268. The details of the revolt are unclear, but it appears that Aureolus first appealed to Postumus for aid, and, failing to gain the Gallic Emperor’s support, declared himself emperor. About the same time, Gallienus was murdered, and was succeeded by Claudius II Gothicus, who continued to beseige Mediolanum. Soon, though, it appeared that an agreement was reached, and Aureolus emerged from the city to meet Claudius. Any such concord, however, was simply a ruse, as Aureolus was taken into custody and executed.
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312. Victorinus27 viewsMarcus Piav(v)onius Victorinus was emperor of the successionist Gallic Empire from 268 to 270 or 271, following the brief reign of Marius.

Victorinus, born to a family of great wealth, was a soldier under Postumus, the first of the so-called Gallic emperors. Victorinus held the title of tribunus praetorianorum in 266/267, and was co-consul with Postumus in 267 or 268. Following the death of Marius, Victorinus was declared emperor by the troops located at Augusta Treverorum (Trier, Germany), and he was recognized by the provinces of Gaul and Britain, but not Spain, which reunited with the Roman Empire.

During his reign, Victorinus successfully prevented the city of Augustodunum Haeduorum (Autun, France) from rejoining the Roman Empire. The city was besieged for seven months, before it was stormed and plundered.

Victorinus was murdered in 270 or early 271 by Attitianus, one of his officers, whose wife Victorinus had supposedly seduced. Victorinus' mother, Victoria (or Vitruvia), continued to hold power after the death of Victorinus and she arranged for his deification and, after considerable payment to the troops, the appointment of Tetricus I as his successor.

Victorinus is listed among the Thirty Tyrants in the Historia Augusta. The (dubius) Historia Augusta equally has a short description of Victorinus the Younger, allegedly the son of Victorinus that was appointed Emperor by his family the day his father was murdered, and would have been killed immediately afterwards by the troops.

Victorinus antoninianus. IMP C VICTORINVS P F AVG, radiate, draped & cuirassed bust right / PAX AVG, Pax standing left. RIC 118, Cohen 79.
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314. Claudius II37 viewsMarcus Aurelius Claudius Gothicus (May 10, 213/214 - January, 270), more often referred to as Claudius II, ruled the Roman Empire for less than two years (268 - 270), but during that brief time, he was so successful and beloved by the people of Rome that he attained divine status.

His origin is uncertain. Claudius was either from Syrmia (Sirmium; in Pannonia Inferior) or from Dardania (in Moesia Superior). Claudius was the commander of the Roman army that defeated decisively the Goths at the battle of Naissus, in September 268; in the same month, he attained the throne, amid charges, never proven, that he murdered his predecessor Gallienus. However, he soon proved to be less than bloodthirsty, as he asked the Roman Senate to spare the lives of Gallienus' family and supporters. He was less magnanimous toward Rome's enemies, however, and it was to this that he owed his popularity.

Claudius, like Maximinus Thrax before him, was of barbarian birth. After an interlude of failed aristocratic Roman emperors since Maximinus's death, Claudius was the first in a series of tough soldier-emperors who would eventually restore the Empire from the Crisis of the third century.

At the time of his accession, the Roman Empire was in serious danger from several incursions, both within and outside its borders. The most pressing of these was an invasion of Illyricum and Pannonia by the Goths. Not long after being named emperor (or just prior to Gallienus' death, depending on the source), he won his greatest victory, and one of the greatest in the history of Roman arms.

At the Battle of Naissus, Claudius and his legions routed a huge Gothic army. Together with his cavalry commander, the future Emperor Aurelian, the Romans took thousands of prisoners, destroyed the Gothic cavalry as a force and stormed their chariot laager (a circular alignment of battle-wagons long favored by the Goths). The victory earned Claudius his surname of "Gothicus" (conqueror of the Goths), and that is how he is known to this day. More importantly, the Goths were soon driven back across the Danube River, and a century passed before they again posed a serious threat to the empire.

While this was going on, the Germanic tribe known as the Alamanni had crossed the Alps and attacked the empire. Claudius responded quickly and swiftly, routing the Alamanni at the Battle of Lake Benacus in the late fall of 268, a few months after the battle of Naissus. He then turned on the "Gallic Empire", ruled by a pretender for the past 15 years and encompassing Britain, Gaul and Spain. He won several victories and soon regained control of Spain and the Rhone river valley of Gaul. This set the stage for the ultimate destruction of the Gallic Empire under Aurelian.

However, Claudius did not live long enough to fulfill his goal of reuniting all the lost territories of the empire. Late in 269 he was preparing to go to war against the Vandals, who were raiding in Pannonia. However, he fell victim to an epidemic of plague and died early in January of 270. Before his death, he is thought to have named Aurelian as his successor, although Claudius' brother Quintillus briefly seized power.

The Senate immediately deified Claudius as "Divus Claudius Gothicus", making him one of the few Roman emperors of the period to be so honored.

Historia Augusta reports Claudius and Quintillus having another brother named Crispus and through him a niece. Said niece Claudia reportedly married Eutropius and was mother to Constantius Chlorus. Historians however suspect this account to be a genealogical fabrication by Constantine the Great.

Claudius II Gothicus AE Antoninianus. Cyzicus mint. IMP CLAVDIVS P F AVG, radiate, draped bust right / FORTUNA REDUX, Fortuna standing left with rudder & cornucopiae. RIC 234, Cohen 88.
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3159 CAPPADOCIA, Caesarea. Hadrian 124 AD Helios on Mt Argaeus30 viewsReference.
Cohen -, cf. 457 (laureate and without aegis). Henseler -, cf. X29a var. (without aegis). RIC -. RPC III -, cf. 3158-9 (differing bust types). Sydenham -, cf. 290a (laureate and without aegis). An unpublished variety of a very rare type.

Issue Bronze with latin legends and Mount Argaeus as reverse design

Obv. HADRIANVS AVGVSTVS
Radiate head of Hadrian to right, with aegis on his left shoulder.

Rev. COS III
Mount Argaeus surmounted by statue of Sol-Helios, radiate, holding globe in his right hand and long scepter with his left.

4.81 gr
19 mm
6h

Note.
From the Collection of Sir A. J. Evans, Ars Classica XVII, 3 October 1934, 1400.

While usually being attributed to Caesarea, the style of the very rare small bronzes of Hadrian with Latin legends showing the Mount Argaios is clearly that of Rome. It is generally believed that the Rome mint shipped its dies to the East in such cases to have the coins struck on the spot, but the fact that RPC records an obverse die match between an Argaios-semis and a regular Rome mint piece in Vienna with a modius on the reverse (RPC III 3159.3 resp. BMC p. 442*) strongly indicates that all semisses were struck in Rome. The emergence of a local motive on a Roman Imperial coin is, in any case, very unusual and the coins may have been struck to commemorate Hadrian's visit to Cappadocia in 124 or 130/1.
1 commentsokidoki
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318-330 AD., Constantinus I., Trier mint imitative type, barbarous Follis, RIC p. 224.91 viewsConstantinus (Constantine) I., Trier mint imitative type, officina 1, 318-330 AD.,
Follis / Æ3 (16-17 mm / 3,05 g),
Obv.: IMP CONSTANT - INVS AVG , cuirassed bust left, high crested helmet, spear in right hand over shoulder.
Rev.: [VIC]TORIAE LAETA PRINC IPF / STR (in exergue) , two Victories standing, facing each other and holding a shield inscribed VOT / PR on plain altar.
cf. http://www.beastcoins.com/Topical/VLPP/Coins/Imitative/VLPP-Trier-PTR-237.jpg ; cf. http://www.constantinethegreatcoins.com/barb2 .

Imitative Folles or "barbarous" bronze coins from this series are plentiful and range from extremely crude to nearly official in appearance. RIC footnotes as "irregular" or "semi-barbarous". On p. 224, Appendix to Trier, RIC describes and lists a number of "irregular" coins for the purpose of "illustrating the wide range of varieties known".

my ancient coin database
2 commentsArminius
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319. Probus59 viewsAt an early age he entered the army, where he distinguished himself under the emperors Valerian, Aurelian and Tacitus. He was appointed governor of the East by the emperor Tacitus, at whose death he was immediately proclaimed his successor by the soldiers. Florianus, who had claimed to succeed his half-brother Tacitus, was put to death by his own troops, and the Senate eagerly ratified the choice of the army. The reign of Probus was mainly spent in successful wars by which he re-established the security of all the frontiers, the most important of these operations being directed to clearing Gaul of German invaders.

Probus had also put down three usurpers, Saturninus, Proculus and Bonosus. One of his principles was never to allow the soldiers to be idle, and to employ them in time of peace on useful works, such as the planting of vineyards in Gaul, Pannonia and other districts. This increase of duties was naturally unpopular, and while the emperor was urging on the draining of the marshes of his native place he was attacked and slain by his own soldiers. Scarcely any emperor has left behind him so good a reputation; his death was mourned alike by senate and people, and even the soldiers repented and raised a monument in his honour.

Obv:– IMP C PROBVS P F AVG, Radiate, cuirassed bust right
Rev:– RESTITVT ORBIS, Female standing right, presenting wreath to emperor standing left, holding globe and sceptre
Minted in Siscia (* in centre field, XXIQ in exe) Emission 5 Officina 4. A.D. 278
Reference:– RIC 733 Bust type F
3 commentsecoli
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320. Carus122 viewsMarcus Aurelius Carus (c. 230 - late July/early August, 283), Roman emperor (282-283), was born probably at Narbona (more correctly, Narona -- now the ruins at Vid, Croatia) in Illyria, but was educated at Rome. He was a senator, and had filled various civil and military posts before he was appointed prefect of the Praetorian Guard by the emperor Probus. After the murder of Probus at Sirmium, Carus was proclaimed emperor by the soldiers.

Although Carus severely avenged the death of Probus, he was himself suspected of having been an accessory to the deed. He does not seem to have returned to Rome after his accession, but contented himself with an announcement of the fact to the Senate.

Bestowing the title of Caesar upon his sons Carinus and Numerian, he left Carinus in charge of the western portion of the empire, and took Numerian with him on the expedition against the Persians which had been contemplated by Probus. Having defeated the Quadi and Sarmatians on the Danube, Carus proceeded through Thrace and Asia Minor, conquered Mesopotamia, pressed on to Seleucia and Ctesiphon, and carried his arms beyond the Tigris.

His hopes of further conquest were cut short by his death. One day, after a violent storm, it was announced that he was dead. His death was variously attributed to disease, the effects of lightning, or a wound received in a campaign against the Huns. However it seems more probable that he was murdered by the soldiers, who were averse to further campaigns against Persia, at the instigation of Arrius Aper, prefect of the Praetorian Guard.

VF/VF Carus AE Antoninianus / Virtus
Attribution: VM 16
Date: 282-283 AD
Obverse: IMP C M AVR CARVS P F AVG, radiate bust r.
Reverse: VIRTVS AVGGG, Carus receiving globe from Jupiter
Size: 20.32 mm
Weight: 2.7 grams
Description: An attractive Carus ant
ecoli73
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321b. Nigrinian29 viewsMarcus Aurelius Nigrinianus, known in English as Nigrinian (d. 284/285), was probably the son of Roman Emperor Carinus and an heir to the throne. Not much is known about him. It is assumed that Carinus' wife Magnia Urbica was his mother, but it has been proposed that he was actually the son of Aurelia Paulina, Carinus' sister and thus the Emperor's nephew. Nigrinian died in infancy in late 284 or early 285. After his death he was given divine status

Divus Nigrinian. Died circa AD 284. Antoninianus (21mm, 2.11 g, 12h). Rome mint, uncertain officina. 5th emission of Carinus, November AD 284. Radiate head right / Eagle standing facing, head left, with wings spread; KA[?]. RIC V 472; Pink VI/2, p. 39. Fair, rough surfaces.
ecoli
323-1_-_Ivlia.jpg
323/1. Julia - denarius (101 BC)8 viewsAR Denarius (Rome, 101 BC)
O/ Helmeted head of Roma right; corn-ear behind.
R/ Victory in biga right, holding reins in both hands; L IVLI below.
3.84g; 19mm
Crawford 323/1 (47 obverse dies/59 reverse dies)

* Lucius Julius:

Although our moneyer belonged to the very famous gens Julia, his life is completely unknown. The Julii had been among the important patrician gentes of the early Republic, but fell in obscurity in the fourth century. In the second century, a new branch emerged, the Julii Caesares, but Crawford notes that our moneyer cannot be a Caesar because he did not use this cognomen and his coins lack a reference to Venus (cf. RRC 258 and 320).

The corn ear on the obverse refers to grain distributions, which often featured on Republican coins (RRC 242, 243, 245, 260, 261, 306, 330).
Joss
rjb_anon_03_06.jpg
33067 viewsAnon, time of Constantine I, c.330 AD
AR third siliqua
Helmeted bust of Roma right
P
Constantinople mint?
Cohen 3

This series is interesting and comprises of several issues of both fractional silver and bronze dating between the 4th and 6th centuries AD (according to Bendall, RN 2002, pp 139-59).

This piece (type 2a) belongs to his early series from c.330 AD. Although no mintmarks are present it is believed the coin was struck in Constantinople due to the provenance of most of the recorded specimens and was probably issued around the time of the dedication of the "new Rome" in the east.
mauseus
SevAlex-RIC-165.jpg
35. Severus Alexander.15 viewsDenarius, ca 223 AD, Rome mint.
Obverse: IMP C M AVR SEV ALEXAND AVG / Laureate bust of Severus Alexander.
Reverse: PAX AETERNA AVG / Pax standing, holding branch and sceptre.
2.24 gm., 20 mm.
RIC #165; Sear #7886.

Issued early in the reign of Severus Alexander, the reverse of this coin promises that the new reign will be one of eternal peace.

Notice that on the reverse sides of this coin, there is sort of an upside-down shadow of the portrait on the other side. This is an example of "clashed dies" -- the two dies were struck together without a flan in between them. The reverse die was damaged, and this damage showed up on any coins that were subsequently struck from it.
Callimachus
Augustus_thunderbolt.jpg
40 BC Octavian denarius165 viewsC CAESAR III VIR R P C
Bare haed of Octavian right

Q SALVIVS IMP COS DESIG
thunderbolt

Italy early 40 BC
3.43g

Sear 1541

SOLD!

David Sear says that this Q Salvius may be Quintus Salvius Salvidienus Rufus who was the boyhood friend and confidant of Octavian. In 42 BC Octavian made him admiral of his fleet and instructed him to attack Sextus Pompey in Sicily. Despite being beaten by Sextus he was granted the title of Imperator which appears on this coin.

After the battle of Philippi Salvidienus was given command of 6 Legions an sent to Spain however he quickly had to return to Italy to confront Fulvia (Antony's wife) and Lucius Antonius (Antony's brother). Salvidienus captured and destroyed the city of Sentinum and then moved on to Perusia with Agrippa to besiege Lucius Antony. At the end of the Perusian War Octavian sent Salvidienus to Gallia as Governor, with eleven legions. He was also designated as consul for 39 BC, although he had not reached senatorial rank.

Salvidienus proved to be unworthy of Octavian's trust and entered into secret negotiations with Mark Antony thinking that Antony would prevail. Unfortunately for Salvidienus, Antony and Octavian were reconciled and Antony informed Octavian of Salvidienus treachary. Antony's decision to inform on Salvidienus has been used to show his desire to settle the differences with Octavian. The senate declared Salvidienus a public enemy and shortly after he was killed, either by his own hand or by execution.
Jay GT4
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403. Carausius37 viewsMarcus Aurelius Mausaeus Carausius (d. 293) was a Roman usurper in Britain and northern Gaul (286–293, Carausian Revolt).

Carausius was a man of humble origin, a Menapian from Belgic Gaul who distinguished himself during Maximian's campaign against the Bagaudae rebels in Gaul in 286. As a result, he was appointed to command the Classis Britannica, a fleet based in the English Channel, with the responsibility of eliminating Frankish and Saxon pirates who had been raiding the coast. However, he was suspected of keeping captured treasure for himself, and even of allowing the pirates to carry out raids and enrich themselves before taking action against them, and Maximian ordered his execution. In late 286 or early 287 Carausius learned of this sentence and responded by declaring himself Emperor of Britain and northern Gaul.

He could count on the alliegance of the three legions based in Britain, as well as one in northern Gaul. How he was able to win support from the army when his command had been sea-based is uncertain. The emperor briefly assumed the title Britannicus Maximus in 285, and the British towns of Wroxeter and Caistor by Norwich towns show signs of destruction around this time, so it is possible Carausius won the army's support during military action in Britain shortly before his rebellion. Alternatively, if the accusations of larceny are true, he could perhaps afford to buy their loyalty. He also appears to have appealed to native British dissatisfaction with Roman rule: he issued coins with legends such as Restitutor Britanniae (Restorer of Britain) and Genius Britanniae (Spirit of Britain).

Maximian, busy with wars on the Rhine, was unable to challenge him immediately, but in the Autumn of 288 he began massing troops and ships for an invasion. In 289 an invasion of Britain intended to dislodge him failed badly due to storms, although a naval defeat is also possible. An uneasy peace continued until 293, during which Rome prepared for a second effort to retake the province, while Carausius began to entertain visions of legitimacy and official recognition. He minted his own coins and brought their value in to line with Roman issues as well as acknowledging and honouring Maximian and then Diocletian. Coinage is the main source of information about the rogue emperor; his issues were initially crude but soon became more elaborate and were issued from mints in Londinium, Rotomagnus and a third site, possibly Colonia Claudia Victricensis. A milestone from Carlisle with his name on it suggests that the whole of Roman Britain was in Carausius' grasp.

It has been speculated (namely, by the historian Sheppard Frere) that the rebellion of Carausius endangered Diocletian's vision of a strong, centralized government based on his tetrarchy. In any case, by early 293 Constantius Chlorus had gained control of northern Gaul, including the rebel's stronghold and port of Bononia, on which Carausius was heavily dependent. Constantius built a mole across the harbour mouth to ensure it did not receive maritime aid.

Constantius also regained the allegiance of the rebellious Gallic legion and defeated the Franks of the Rhine mouth who seem to have been working in league with Carausius. Weakened by these setbacks, Carausius was assassinated, possibly at York, by his treasurer, Allectus.

aVF/aVF Carausius Antoninianus / Pax / Green Patina and Nice Style

Attribution: RIC 895
Date: 287-293 AD
Obverse: IMP CARAVSIVS P F AVG, radiate and draped bust right
Reverse: PAX AVG, Pax standing left, holding branch and transverse sceptre.
Size: 20.91 mm
Weight: 3 grams
ecoli
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407. Severus II35 viewsFlavius Valerius Severus was of humble origin and from Illyricum. Early in his career he had held a military command. When Diocletian, at Nicomedeia, and Maximianus Herculius, at Mediolanum, divested themselves of the purple (Milan) on 1 May 305, they appointed Constantius I and Galerius as Augusti in their place, with Severus and Maximinus Daia as the new Caesars. Both Caesars were Galerius' creatures and received their appointment at his hands. Constantius I and Severus ruled the west, while Galerius and Daia controlled the east.

When Galerius learned of the death of Constantius I in August 306 and the acclamation of Constantine to the purple, he raised Severus to the rank of Augustus to replace the dead Augustus. Matters went from bad to worse for Galerius when Maxentius, the son of Maximianus Herculius, was proclaimed emperor at Rome on 28 October 306. Galerius was disturbed when he heard the news of Maxentius' revolt because the usurper seized Rome, then part of Severus' realm. Galerius sent Severus from Mediolanum (Milan) to fight the enemy. Severus took a large field army which had formerly been that of Maximianus and proceeded toward Rome.

When Maxentius learned about the advance of Severus, he sent his own father the purple and offered to make him Augustus again to win Severus' army to his side; Maximianus accepted his offer. Meanwhile, Severus and his army reached Rome and began to besiege the city; Maxentius, however, bribed Severus' soldiers and, at a set signal, the Augustus' forces joined the usurper. Severus fled ro Ravenna with a few remaining soldiers. Maximianus went to Ravenna and, with false promises of safety, convinced Severus to surrender. He took this action because he realized that Severus' position was impregnable. Under house arrest Severus was brought to Rome and imprisoned at Tres Tabernae. Severus was put to death in 307 under clouded circumstances, when Galerius invaded Italy

Severus II AD 305-306 AE Follis "Genius Serdica" "The genius of the people of Rome." Obv: FL VAL SEVERVS NOB C - Laureate head right Rev: GENIO POPVLI ROMANI - Genius standing left, holding patera and cornucopia. Exe: SIS Siscia mint: AD 305-306 = RIC VI, p. 475, 170a Rare (r)
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408. Maxentius34 viewsMarcus Aurelius Valerius Maxentius, more commonly known as Maxentius, was the child of the Emperor Maximianus Herculius and the Syrian Eutropia; he was born ca. 278 A.D. After Galerius' appointment to the rank of Caesar on 1 March 293, Maxentius married Galerius' daughter Valeria Maximilla, who bore him a son named Romulus and another son whose name is unknown. Due to his haughty nature and bad disposition, Maxentius could seldom agree with his father or his father-in-law; Galerius' and Maximianus Herculius' aversion to Maxentius prevented the young man from becoming a Caesar in 305. Little else is known of Maxentius' private life prior to his accession and, alth ough there is some evidence that it was spent in idleness, he did become a Senator.

On 28 October 306 Maxentius was acclaimed emperor, although he was politcally astute enough not to use the title Augustus; like the Emperor Augustus, he called himself princeps. It was not until the summer of 307 that he started usi ng the title Augustus and started offending other claimants to the imperial throne. He was enthroned by the plebs and the Praetorians. At the time of his acclamation Maxentius was at a public villa on the Via Labicana. He strengthened his position with promises of riches for those who helped him obtain his objective. He forced his father Maximianus Herculius to affirm his son's acclamation in order to give his regime a facade of legitimacy. His realm included Italy, Africa, Sardinia, and Corsica. As soon as Galerius learned about the acclamation of Herculius' son, he dispatched the Emperor Severus to quell the rebellion. With the help of his father and Severus' own troops, Maxentius' took his enemy prisoner.

When Severus died, Galerius was determined to avenge his death. In the early summer of 307 the Augustus invaded Italy; he advanced to the south and encamped at Interamna near the Tiber. His attempt to besiege the city was abortive because his army was not large enough to encompass the city's fortifications. Negotiations between Maxentius and Galerius broke down when the emperor discovered that the usurper was trying to win over his troops. Galerius' troops were open to Maxentius' promises because they were fighting a civil war between members of the same family; some of the soldiers went over to the enemy. Not trusting his own troops, Galerius withdrew. During its retreat, Galerius' army ravaged the Italian countryside as it was returning to its original base. If it was not enough that Maxentius had to deal with the havoc created by the ineffectual invasions of Severus and Galerius, he also had to deal with his father's attempts to regain the throne between 308 and 310. When Maximianus Herculius was unable to regain power by pushing his son off his throne, he attempted to win over Constantine to his cause. When this plan failed, he tried to win Diocletian over to his side at Carnuntum in October and November 308. Frustrated at every turn, Herculius returned to his son-in-law Constantine's side in Gaul where he died in 310, having been implicated in a plot against his son-in-law. Maxentius' control of the situation was weakened by the revolt of L. Domitius Alexander in 308. Although the revolt only lasted until the end of 309, it drastically cut the size of the grain supply availble for Rome. Maxentius' rule collapsed when he died on 27 October 312 in an engagement he had with the Emperor Constantine at the Milvian Bridge after the latter had invaded his realm.

Maxentius Follis. Ostia mint. IMP C MAXENTIVS P F AVG, laureate head right / AETE-RNITAS A-VGN, Castor and Pollux standing facing each other, each leaning on sceptre and holding bridled horse.
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409. Maximinus II Daza37 viewsCaius Valerius Galerius Maximinus, more commonly known as Maximinus Daia or Daza, was from Illyricum and was of peasant origin. He was born 20 November perhaps in the year 270. Daia was the son of Galerius' sister and had served in the army as a scutarius, Protector, and tribunus. He had been adopted by Galerius ; his name had been Daia even before that time. He had a wife and daughter, whose names are unknown, while his son's name was Maximus. When Diocletian and Maximianus Herculius resigned their posts of emperor on 1 May 305, they were succeeded by Constantius I Chlorus and Galerius as Augusti; their new Caesars were Severus and Maximinus Daia respectively. Constantius and Severus ruled in the West, whereas Galerius and Daia served in the East. Specifically, Daia's realm included the Middle East and the southern part of Asia Minor.[[1]]

Immediately after his appointment to the rank of Caesar, he went east and spent his first several years at Caesarea in Palestine. Events of the last quarter of 306 had a profound effect on the Emperor Galerius and his Caesar Daia. When Constantius I Chlorus died in July 306, the eastern emperor was forced by the course of events to accept Constantius' son Constantine as Caesar in the West; on 28 October of the same year, Maxentius , with the apparent backing of his father Maximianus Herculius, was acclaimed princeps. Both the attempt to dislodge Maxentius by Severus, who had been appointed Augustus of the West by Galerius after the death of Constantius in late 306 or early 307, and the subsequent campaign of Galerius himself in the summer of 307 failed. Because of the escalating nature of this chain of events, a Conference was called at Carnuntum in October and November 308; Licinius was appointed Augustus in Severus's place and Daia and Constantine were denoted filii Augustorum. Daia, however, unsatisfied with this sop tossed to him by Galerius, started calling himself Augustus in the spring of 310 when he seems to have campaigned against the Persians.[[2]] Although, as Caesar, he proved to be a trusted servant of Galerius until the latter died in 311, he subsequently seized the late emperor's domains. During the early summer of that year, he met with Licinius at the Bosporus; they concluded a treaty and divided Galerius' realm between them. Several yea rs later, after the death of Daia, Licinius obtained control of his domain. Like his mentor the late emperor, Daia had engaged in persecution of the Christians in his realm.[[3]]

In the autumn of 312, while Constantine was engaged against Maxentius, Daia appears to have been campaigning against the Armenians. In any case, he was back in Syria by February 313 when he seems to have learned about the marital alliance which had been forged by Constantine and Licinius. Disturbed by this course of events and the death of Maxentius, who had been his ally, Daia left Syria and reached Bythinia, although the harsh weather had seriously weakened his army. In April 313, he crossed the Bosporus and went to Byzantium, garrisoned by Licinius' troops; when the city refused to surrender, he took it after an eleven day siege. He moved to Heraclea, which he captured after a short siege; he then moved his forces to the first posting station. With only a small contingent of men, Licinius arrived at Adrianople while Daia was besieging Heraclea. On 30 April 313 the two armies clashed on the Campus Ergenus; in the ensuing battle Daia's forces were routed. Divesting himself of the purple and dressing like a slave, Daia fled to Nicomdeia. Subsequently, Daia attempted to stop the advance of Licinius at the Cilician Gates by establishing fortifications there; Licinius' army succeeded in breaking through, and Daia fled to Tarsus where he was hard pressed on land and sea. Daia died, probably in July or August 313, and was buried near Tarsus. Subsequently, the victorious emperor put Daia's wife and children to death.

Maximinus II Daza. 309-313 AD. ? Follis. Laureate head right / Genius standing left holding cornucopiae.
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Gordian-III-RIC-167A.jpg
43. Gordian III / RIC 167A, year VII.24 viewsAntoninianus, 244 AD, Rome mint.
Obverse: IMP GORDIANVS PIVS FEL AVG / Radiate bust of Gordian.
Reverse: P M TR P VII COS II P P / Mars advancing, holding spear and shield.
4.87 gm., 23 mm.
RIC #167A; Sear #8653.

Coins of Gordian dated to the seventh year (TR P VII) exist even though he died several months before starting his seventh year. The death of Gordian is generally thought to have been in early 244, perhaps in February, and his seventh year would have started on July 29, 244. The likely explanation for these coins is that the mint had just started to make them so they could be ready for circulation at the proper time. However, when the news of Gordian's death reached Rome, the few coins that had already been minted were just put into circulation rather than being restruck for the new emperor. This would also account for their rarity today.
Callimachus
44-6-CNG-2_22gm-dot.jpg
44/6 Quinarius - Dot Variety27 viewsDenomination: Quinarius
Metal: AR
Obverse: Head of Roma with 3-bar splayed visor, V mark of value behind. Dot under neck.
Reverse: Dioscuri riding r. with streaming cape. Horse’s tail hangs down. ROMA in relief.
Weight: 2.22 gms
Reference: Crawford 44/6
Provenance: CNG, eSale 279 lot 209
Comments: Early Quinarius. Group 2, with splayed visor and horse tail hanging downward. Three bar visor. This is the “dot” variety, with dot below the truncation. See P. Debernardi, “The Orzivecchi Hoard and the Beginnings of the Denarius.” NC, 2014 pp. 75-89.
1 commentsSteve B5
44-6-Gr1-3bar-2_13gmSmall.jpg
44/6 Quinarius group 1 19 viewsDenomination: Quinarius
Metal: AR
Obverse: Head of Roma with 3-bar splayed visor, V mark of value behind
Reverse: Dioscuri riding r. with streaming cape. Horse’s tail extended. ROMA in relief.
Weight: 2.13 gms
Reference: Crawford 44/6
Provenance: Gert Boersema, April 17, 2012
Comments: Early Quinarius. Group 1, with splayed visor and horse tail extended. Three bar visor
1 commentsSteve B5
44-6-A2-MnM-May-2014.jpg
44/6 Quinarius group 2 31 viewsDenomination: Quinarius
Metal: AR
Obverse: Head of Roma with 3-bar splayed visor, V mark of value behind
Reverse: Dioscuri riding r. with streaming cape. Horse’s tail hangs down. ROMA in relief.
Weight: 2.21 gms
Reference: Crawford 44/6
Provenance: M&M Gmbh, Auction 40, Lot 485
Comments: Early Quinarius. Group 2, with splayed visor and horse tail hanging downward. Three bar visor
2 commentsSteve B5
44-7-A1-Ba-2.jpg
44/7 Sestertius15 viewsDenomination: Sestertius
Metal: AR
Obverse: Head of Roma with 2-bar splayed visor, IIS mark of value behind.
Reverse: Dioscuri riding r. with flag style cape. Horse’s tail hangs down. ROMA in relief.
Weight: 1.09 gms
Reference: Crawford 44/7
Provenance: Roma Numismatics, November 2, 2016, lot 2038
Comments: Early Sestertius. Group 1, with splayed visor and horse tail extended. Broad head
Steve B5
44-7-G2-CNG-05-12.jpg
44/7 Sestertius - Group 210 viewsDenomination: Sestertius
Metal: AR
Obverse: Head of Roma with 2-bar splayed visor, IIS mark of value behind.
Reverse: Dioscuri riding r. with streaming cape. ROMA in relief.
Weight: 1.02 gms
Reference: Crawford 44/7
Provenance: CNG eSale 79, lot 211, May 16, 2012
Comments: A little sestertius gem that has much more of a metallic surface character than apparent in the photo, is a slightly anomalous variation. The obverse is clearly group 2, with bound hair, but the reverse is a rare variation with tail slightly extended.
Steve B5
44-7-A1-Aa.jpg
44/7 Sestertius group 110 viewsDenomination: Sestertius
Metal: AR
Obverse: Head of Roma with 2-bar splayed visor, IIS mark of value behind.
Reverse: Dioscuri riding r. with flag style cape. Horse’s tail hangs down. ROMA in relief.
Weight: .95 gms
Reference: Crawford 44/7
Provenance: Artemide Asta XL, June 3 2014, lot 2038
Comments: Early Sestertius. Group 1, with splayed visor and horse tail extended. Narrow head.
Steve B5
Caesar_DICT_ITER.jpg
46 BC Gaius Julius Caesar 50 viewsDICT ITER COS TERT
Head of Ceres right wreathed with corn

AVGVR PONT MAX
Simpulum, sprinkler, jug and lituus D or M on right

Utica? 46 BC
Sear 1403

SOLD

This extensive issue of denarii would seem to represent another measure on the part of Caesar to ease the burden on the Capitoline mint in the period prior to the distribution of vast sums of money at the quadruple triumph. The inscription on these coins omit the actual name of the dictator. However, the titles clearly refer to Caesar- his dictatorships, consulships and possession of various priestly offices.

Attention is drawn to the extraordinary nature of the issue by the appearance of either a "D" (Donativum) or "M" (munus, gift) in the reverse field. This tells of the intended use of the coins for the payment of Caesar's loyal veterans, both prior to the quadruple triumph and during the celebration itself.
Titus Pullo
Lepidus_and_Octavian.jpg
495/2a Lepidus and Octavian23 viewsLepidus and Octavian. Military mint traveling with Lepidus in Italy. 43 B.C., late. AR Denarius.(3.35g, 16mm, 6h). Obv:LEPIDVS•PONT•MAX•III•VIR•R•P•C•, bare head of Lepidus right Rev: CAESAR•IMP•III•VIR•R•P•C•, bare head of Octavian right. Cf Crawford 495/2a 2c-d; Syd. 1323; Cf RSC 2-2a; 2c-d. “From Group SGF”

I’ve sought a coin with a portrait of Lepidus, and while worn, the obverse portrait is clearly identifiable. 43 B.C. saw the establishment of the Second Triumvirate giving Lepidus, Antony, and Octavian dictatorial powers over the Roman State.
1 commentsLucas H
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4th- 5th Century Round Plate Buckle18 viewsRound plate buckle of either Roman or Germanic origin. The buckle itself is chunky and this may be an early Medieval period item. 36 mm x 47mm.Fiorenza21
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501. Constantine I Alexandria Posthumous23 viewsAlexandria

The city passed formally under Roman jurisdiction in 80 BC, according to the will of Ptolemy Alexander but after it had been previously under Roman influence for more than a hundred years. Julius Caesar dallied with Cleopatra in Alexandria in 47 BC, saw Alexander's body (quipping 'I came to see a king, not a collection of corpses' when he was offered a view of the other royal burials) and was mobbed by the rabble. His example was followed by Marc Antony, for whose favor the city paid dearly to Octavian, who placed over it a prefect from the imperial household.

From the time of annexation onwards, Alexandria seems to have regained its old prosperity, commanding, as it did, an important granary of Rome. This fact, doubtless, was one of the chief reasons which induced Augustus to place it directly under imperial power. In AD 215 the emperor Caracalla visited the city and for some insulting satires that the inhabitants had directed at him, abruptly commanded his troops to put to death all youths capable of bearing arms. This brutal order seems to have been carried out even beyond the letter, for a general massacre ensued.

Even as its main historical importance had formerly sprung from pagan learning, now Alexandria acquired fresh importance as a centre of Christian theology and church government. There Arianism was formulated and where also Athanasius, the great opponent of both Arianism and pagan reaction, triumphed over both, establishing the Patriarch of Alexandria as a major influence in Christianity for the next two centuries.

As native influences began to reassert themselves in the Nile valley, Alexandria gradually became an alien city, more and more detached from Egypt and losing much of its commerce as the peace of the empire broke up during the 3rd century AD, followed by a fast decline in population and splendour.

In the late 4th century, persecution of pagans by Christians had reached new levels of intensity. Temples and statues were destroyed throughout the Roman empire: pagan rituals became forbidden under punishment of death, and libraries were closed. In 391, Emperor Theodosius I ordered the destruction of all pagan temples, and the Patriarch Theophilus, complied with his request. It is possible that the great Library of Alexandria and the Serapeum was destroyed about this time. The pagan mathematician and philosopher Hypathia was a prominent victim of the persecutions.

The Brucheum and Jewish quarters were desolate in the 5th century, and the central monuments, the Soma and Museum, fell into ruin. On the mainland, life seemed to have centred in the vicinity of the Serapeum and Caesareum, both which became Christian churches. The Pharos and Heptastadium quarters, however, remained populous and left intact.

veiled head only
DV CONSTANTI-NVS PT AVGG
RIC VIII Alexandria 32 C3

From uncleaned lot; one of the nicer finds.
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501. Constantine I Cyzicus GLORIA EXERCITVS29 viewsCyzicus

Cyzicus was an ancient town of Mysia in Asia Minor, situated on the shoreward side of the present peninsula of Kapu-Dagh (Arctonnesus), which is said to have been originally an island in the Sea of Marmara, and to have been artificially connected with the mainland in historic times.

It was, according to tradition, occupied by Thessalian settlers at the coming of the Argonauts, and in 756 BC the town was founded by Greeks from Miletus.

Owing to its advantageous position it speedily acquired commercial importance, and the gold staters of Cyzicus were a staple currency in the ancient world till they were superseded by those of Philip of Macedon. (For more information on ancient coinage click here) During the Peloponnesian War (431-404 BC) Cyzicus was subject to the Athenians and Lacedaemonians alternately, and at the peace of Antalcidas (387 BC), like the other Greek cities in Asia, it was made over to Persia.

The history of the town in Hellenistic times is closely connected with that of the Attalids of Pergamon, with whose extinction it came into direct relations with Rome. Cyzicus was held for the Romans against Mithradates in 74 BC till the siege was raised by Lucullus: the loyalty of the city was rewarded by an extension of territory and other privileges. Still a flourishing centre in Imperial times, the place appears to have been ruined by a series of earthquakes —the last in AD 1063— and the population was transferred to Artaki at least as early as the 13th century, when the peninsula was occupied by the Crusaders.

The site is now known as Bal-Kiz and entirely uninhabited, though under cultivation. The principal extant ruins are the walls, which are traceable for nearly their whole extent, a picturesque amphitheatre intersected by a stream, and the substructures of the temple of Hadrian. Of this magnificent building, sometimes ranked among the seven wonders of the ancient world, thirty-one immense columns still stood erect in 1444. These have since been carried away piecemeal for building purposes.

RIC VII Cyzicus 110 R5

Ex-Varangian

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501. Constantine I GLORIA EXERCITVS Arles21 viewsArles SCONST
15 views
Arles

Over 3000 years of history reside upon this rocky rise just north of the Mediterranean Sea on the Rhône River. Part of ancient Liguria, the site later became a city, Arlate, named by the Celts as the village amidst the marshes. After the Celts came the Greeks who made good use of this easily accessed inland port. The Greeks were displaced by the Romans and with Caesar's defeat of the Phoenicians at Massalia (current-day Marseille) with the help of nearly 20 battle ships built by the Arlesians, Arles became the Roman capitol of Provincia Romana, with the lands formerly under the dominion of Massalia, Glanum and other former Phoenician supporters now hers.

Constantine I AE3. 333-334 AD. CONSTANTI-NVS MAX AVG, rosette-diademed, draped & cuirassed bust right / GLOR-IA EXERC-ITVS laurel wreath with dot, SCONST in ex. RIC Vii 375
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501. Constantine I Lyons Sol14 viewsLyons

Originally, the important city in this area was that of Vienne, at a crossroads of Celtic trails, and port for the Greek trade. They had been largly Hellanised during the 2nd - 1st centuries BCE, then caught up in the conflicts involving Rome and Athens. Roman traders had settled there and competition started a revolt, driving the Romans to the north. At the present site of Lyons, they sought and received refuge from the Gallic tribe called Segusiavi. At that time, Lyons was just a tribe of Celts occupying the top of a hill, later to be called Fourviere. A Roman settlement was begun, and then later used by Julius Caesar to launch his campaigns against the Helvetii in 58 BCE.

The site of Lyons, being on a crossroads as well as a connection to the Mediterranean, was early recognised as being strategically important. In 43 BCE, the city of Lugdunum became an official Roman colony recognised by the Roman senate, founded by the governor of Gallia Comata (province of Comata), Lucius Munatius Plancus. Later, in 27 BCE, then Emperor Augustus divided Gallia Comata into three provinces, and Lugdunum became the capital of Gallia Lugdunensis. [The third province was Gallia Aquitania.]

Lyons became the financial center for taxation purposes of Aquitania and Lugdunum provinces, and an official mint was established there. Also, the state cult honoring Augustus [or the present Emperor] was established at Lyons, drawing many pilgrims and supplicants. Drusus, the father of Claudius, (born 10 BCE) was stationed at Lyons, being in charge of Gallia Comata. Also, a cohort of Roman policemen were stationed at lyons, to protect the mint. A bronze inscription found at Lyons records the speech given to the Roman Senate in 48 CE by Emperor Claudius, arguing for the acceptance of admission of senators from Gallia Comata.

Through Lyons [and Vienne] passed the great roads leading to the different regions of Gaul and towards Italy. Trade with Gaul, Britain and Germany passed through Lyons, mostly supplying Roman colonies on the the frontier. Later, these routes were paved by the Romans to facilitate trade and troop movement. Lyons became an important trade and military center. However, intercity rivalry with Vienne to the south never died, and indeed Vienne became jealous over time.

Lyons was burnt to the ground in 65 CE but quickly rebuilt. It prospered until 197 when it was sacked in a civil war. The city of Lyons had backed the unfortunate loser in a battle between two Roman generals. Cities to the south [Arles, Vienne, and to the north, Trier] took over the economic functions of Lyons; and the city of Lyons was again plundered 269. Lyons fought back, and the trade wars raged on, until early in the 4th century when the aqueducts of Lyons were destroyed. Without water, the hillsite of Lyons [the Fourviere Hill] became untenable. The merchants moved down to the city below, or out of the city entirely. The protection of Lyons was thus much more difficult. And the decline of the Roman Empire also spelled the decline of many of its cities.

RIC VII Lyons 34 C3

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5018A EGYPT, Alexandria. Hadrian Drachm 117-18 AD Hadrian in quadriga46 viewsReference.
Emmett 960.2; RPC III, 5018A Köln 757; Dattari (Savio) 1585 var. (obv. legend); K&G 32.50
BMC 864 specimen has ΑΥΤ ΚΑΙС ΤΡΙΑΝΟС (sic) ΑΔΡΙΑΝΟС as obverse legend.

Issue L B = year 2

Obv. ΑΥΤ ΚΑΙС ΤΡΑIΝΟС (sic) ΑΔΡΙΑΝΟС
Laureate bust right No Beard, slight drapery

Rev. L B (date ry 2)
Emperor (Hadrian) standing in quadriga, right, laureate-headed, wearing toga, holding eagle-tipped sceptre and branch.

21.80 gr
34 mm
12 h

From the Syracuse Collection.

Note CNG.
Hadrian’s portraits on his early coins in Alexandria more closely resemble Trajan, as the engravers in the provinces waited for an official Imperial model or bust to be sent out. In this case, by Hadrian’s regnal year 2, the engravers might have had access to or knowledge of what Hadrian looked like, as the portrait on the present coin is beginning to morph into a more accurate representation of Hadrian’s Imperial image.
1 commentsokidoki
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503. Constans25 viewsFlavius Julius Constans (320 - January 18, 350), was a Roman Emperor who ruled from 337 to 350. Constans was the third and youngest son of Constantine the Great and Fausta, Constantine's second wife.

From 337, he was a joint ruler with his brothers Constantius II and Constantine II. Constantine II attempted to take advantage of his youth and inexperience by invading Italy in 340, but Constans defeated Constantine II at Aquileia, where the older brother died.

The writer Julius Firmicus Maternus mentioned that Constans visited Britain in the early months of 343, but did not explain why. The speed of his trip, paired with the fact he crossed the English Channel during the dangerous winter months, suggests it was in response to a military emergency of some kind.

In 350, the general Magnentius declared himself emperor with the support of the troops on the Rhine frontier, and later the entire Western portion of the Roman Empire. Constans lacked any support beyond his immediate household, and was forced to flee for his life. Magnentius' supporters cornered him in a fortification in southeastern Gaul, where he was killed.

Constans, AE3. 340-348 AD. DN CONSTANS P F AVG, diademed draped bust right / VICTORIAE DD AVGG Q NN, two Victories standing facing each other, each holding wreath & palm.
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511. Valens37 viewsAfter a brief stay aimed at building his troop strength and gaining a toehold in Thrace, Valens moved out to Adrianople. From there, he marched against the confederated barbarian army on August 9, 378 in what would become known as the battle of Adrianople. Although negotiations were attempted, these broke down when a Roman unit sallied forth and carried both sides into battle. The Romans held their own early on but were crushed by the surprise arrival of Visigoth cavalry which split their ranks.

The primary source for the battle is Ammianus, who is quoted at length by Edward Gibbon (The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, XXVI). Valens had left a sizeable guard with his baggage and treasures depleting his force. His right wing, cavalry, arrived at the Gothic camp sometime before the left wing arrived. It was a very hot day and the Roman cavalry was engaged without strategic support, wasting its efforts while they suffered in the heat.

Meanwhile Fritigern once again sent an emissary of peace in his continued manipulation of the situation. The resultant delay meant that the Romans present on the field began to succumb to the heat. The army's resources were further diminished when an ill timed attack by the Roman archers made it necessary to recall Valens’ emissary, Count Richomer. The archers were beaten and retreated in humiliation.

Gothic cavalry under the command of Althaeus and Saphrax then struck and, with what was probably the most decisive event of the battle, the Roman cavalry fled. The Roman infantry was abandoned, surrounded and cut to pieces. Valens was wounded and carried to a small wooden hut. The hut was surrounded by the Goths who put it to the torch, evidently unaware of the prize within. According to Ammianus, this is how Valens perished.

When the battle was over, two-thirds of the eastern army lied dead. Many of their best officers had also perished. What was left of the army of Valens was led from the field under the cover of night by Count Richomer and General Victor.

J.B. Bury, a noted authority on the barbarian invasion of Europe provides specific interpretation on the significance the battle; It was "a disaster and disgrace that need not have occurred."

For Rome, the battle incapacitated the government. Emperor Gratian, nineteen years old, was overcome by the debacle, and until he appointed Theodosius, unable to deal with the catastrophe which spread out of control.

Date: 364-367 AD
Obverse: D N VALEN-S P F AVG, Cuirassed and draped, pearl diademed bust right.
Reverse: RESTITV-TOR REIP, Valens stg. Looking r. holding labarum in r. hand and Victory on globe presenting wreath on emperor on l. hand. TES delta in exergue.
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515a. Aelia Flacilla33 viewsEmpress, wife of Theodosius the Great, died c. A. D. 385 or 386. Like Theodosius himself, his first wife, Ælia Flaccilla, was of Spanish descent. She may have been the daughter of Claudius Antonius, Prefect of Gaul, who was consul in 382. Her marriage with Theodosius probably took place in the year 376, when his father, the comes Theodosius, fell into disfavour and he himself withdrew to Cauca in Gallæcia, for her eldest son, afterwards Emperor Arcadius, was born towards the end of the following year. In the succeeding years she presented two more children to her husband Honorius (384), who later became emperor, and Pulcheria, who died in early childhood, shortly before her mother. Gregory of Nyssa states expressly that she had three children; consequently the Gratian mentioned by St. Ambrose, together with Pulcheria, was probably not her son. Flaccilla was, like her husband, a zealous supporter of the Nicene Creed and prevented the conference between the emperor and the Arian Eunomius (Sozomen, Hist. eccl., VII, vi). On the throne she was a shining example of Christian virtue and ardent charity. St. Ambrose describes her as "a soul true to God" (Fidelis anima Deo. — "De obitu Theodosii", n. 40, in P. L., XVI, 1462). In his panegyric St. Gregory of Nyssa bestowed the highest praise on her virtuous life and pictured her as the helpmate of the emperor in all good works, an ornament of the empire, a leader of justice, an image of beneficence. He praises her as filled with zeal for the Faith, as a pillar of the Church, as a mother of the indigent. Theodoret in particular exalts her charity and benevolence (Hist. eccles., V, xix, ed. Valesius, III, 192 sq.). He tells us how she personally tended cripples, and quotes a saying of hers: "To distribute money belongs to the imperial dignity, but I offer up for the imperial dignity itself personal service to the Giver." Her humility also attracts a special meed of praise from the church historian. Flaccilla was buried in Constantinople, St. Gregory of Nyssa delivering her funeral oration. She is venerated in the Greek Church as a saint, and her feast is kept on 14 September. The Bollandists (Acta SS., Sept., IV, 142) are of the opinion that she is not regarded as a saint but only as venerable, but her name stands in the Greek Menæa and Synaxaria followed by words of eulogy, as is the case with the other saints

Wife of Theodosius. The reverse of the coin is very interesting; a nice bit of Pagan-Christian syncretism with winged victory inscribing a chi-rho on a shield.
1 commentsecoli
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515b. Magnus Maximus35 viewsA Spaniard, Maximus was proclaimed emperor by his troops in 383, while serving with the army in Britain. Later legend made him King of the Britons; he handed the throne over to Caradocus when he went to Gaul to pursue his imperial ambitions.

Following his destruction of Gaul, Maximus went out to meet his main opponent, Gratian, who he defeated near Paris. Gratian, after fleeing, was killed at Lyon on August 25, 383. Soon after, Maximus managed to force Valentinian II out of Rome after which he fled to Theodosius I, the Eastern Roman Emperor. Maximus made his capital at Augusta Treverorum (Treves, Trier) in Gaul. He became a popular emperor, although also a stern persecutor of heretics.

Theodosius I and Valentinian II campaigned against Magnus Maximus in July-August 388. Maximus was defeated in the Battle of the Save, near Emona, and retreated to Aquileia. Andragathius, magister equitum of Maximus and killer of Gratian, was defeated near Siscia, his brother Marcellinus again at Poetovio. Maximus surrendered in Aquileia and although pleaded for mercy was executed. However, his wife and two daughters were spared. Maximus' son, Flavius Victor, was defeated and executed by Valentinian's magister peditum Arbogast in the fall of the same year.

What happened to his family is not related, although it is clear that they survived and that his descendants continued to occupy influential posts. We encounter a possible daughter of Magnus Maximus, Sevira, on the Pillar of Eliseg, an early medieval inscribed stone in Wales which claims her marriage to Vortigern, king of the Britons. Another daughter was possibly married to Ennodius, proconsul Africae (395). Their grandson was Petronius Maximus, who was another ill-fated emperor, ruling in Rome for but 77 days before he was stoned to death while fleeing from the Vandals on May 24, 455. Other descendants included Anicius Olybrius, emperor in 472, but also several consuls and bishops such as St. Magnus Felix Ennodius (Bishop of Pavia c. 514-21).

Magnus Maximus AE-4

Obv: MM right, DN MAG MAXIMVS PF AVG; Reverse: SPES ROMANORVM, campgate with two turrets and star above. Coin is nice VF for this small issue.
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5319 EGYPT, Alexandria. Hadrian Tetradrachm 121-22 AD Eirene standing18 viewsReference.
RPC III, 5319.6 (this coin). Dattari-Savio Pl. 66, 1362 (this coin); Emmett 838.6

Issue L Ϛ = year 6

Obv. ΑΥΤ ΚΑΙ ΤΡΑΙ - ΑΔΡΙΑ СƐΒ
Laureate head of Hadrian, r., drapery on l. shoulder; to r crescent

Rev. ƐΙΡΗΝΗ СƐΒΑСΤΗ, L Ϛ
Eirene standing facing, head l., holding ears of corn and caduceus

13.12 gr
24 mm
12h

Note.
see how this early bust still looks very much like Trajan

From the Dattari collection.
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535b Hadrian Sestertius, Roma 117 AD Concordia78 viewsReference.
RIC cf535b; BMC cf1104; Strack cf502; Banti 145 ( 1 example)

Obv. IMP CAES DIVI TRAIAN AVG F TRAIAN HADRIAN OPT AVG GER,
Laureate, heroically nude bust right, baldric (sword) strap around neck and across chest, loop on shoulder, seen from front

Rev DAC PARTHICO P M TR P COS P P, CONCORDIA and S C in field
Concordia seated left on throne, cornucopia at side, holding patera and resting elbow on statuette of Spes standing left set on low basis.

24.78 gr
35 mm
6h


When he became emperor following the death of Trajan in 117 AD, questions immediately arose regarding the validity of Hadrian's succesion. Although it is clear from Hadrian's early career and marriage to Sabina (Trajan's grand-niece) that the emperor brought his young kinsman within the imperial court, Trajan, unlike Nerva before, made no move to adopt Hadrian formally, instead possibly preferring others. This fact prompted Hadrian, in the early days of his reign to emphasize his legitimacy to the succession. Hadrian declared Trajan divus and ordered his ashes installed in the Column of his newly complete Forum. Trajan's name and titles were incorporated into the new imperial nomenclature, a privilege reserved solely for legitimate heirs. At the same time, coins were struck to associate the new reign with the previous administration and declare a peaceful transferral of power. The legend DAC PARTHICO (in the dedicatory dative), clearly refers to Trajan, while the Concordia reverse type (to date, uncommon with the addition of Spes), emphasized by the inclusion of CONCORDIA in the exergue, demonstrated Hadrian's potential willingness for the time to continue Trajan's policies, thereby insuring continued political harmony, something which disintegrated as Hadrian's reign progressed.
1 commentsokidoki
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5458A EGYPT, Alexandria Hadrian Drachm 123-24 AD Sphinx right30 viewsReference.
cf RPC 5910.19; cf Dattari-Savio Pl. 99, 7913a (this coin) Date correction

Issue L H = year 8

Obv. ΑΥΤ ΚΑΙ ΤΡΑΙ - ΑΔΡΙΑ СƐΒ
Laureate head of Hadrian, r., drapery on l. shoulder

Rev. L Η
Sphinx wearing Hemhem crown, horns and feathers with crocodile emerging from chest, walking, r., on serpent; above, griffin

20.05 gr
35 mm
12h

Note.
This Dattari plate coin needs a Correction on the Date

it is L H Issue year 8, this goes with the bust types used in his early reign

L IH is dated with another bust seen from rear also the is no room for L IH

This bust is not seen after year 8, also sphinx wears a Hemhem crown, normaly one sees a crown of disc
Also the serpent is a bit odd looking like it has two heads?
1 commentsokidoki
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55 BC Gn. Plancius151 viewsCN PLANCIVS AED CVR SC
Head of Macedonia right, wearing causia

Cretan goat standing right, bow and quiver behind
IIZ (old museum number?) in Ex.

Rome 55 BC
3.46g

Sear 396, RRC 432/1

Ex-Canadian Coin

Gnaeus Plancius was a friend of Cicero and strikes this coin as curule aedile. The type recalls his military service in Crete under the Proconsul Q. Metellus. He was also a military tribune under C. Antonius. He later returned to Macedonia as questor under the Propraetor L. Appuleius Saturninus. While serving as Questor in Thessalonia Plancius courageously took in Cicero as a guest in his official residence. Earlier that year (January or Early February of 58 BC.) Cicero was exiled from Italy and Rome because of the Tribune Clodius' legislation which confiscated Cicero's property and forced him to stay 400 miles out of the city of Rome. Clodius was eventually killed along the Appian Way by his rival Milo. Cicero took up the case for the defense of Milo unsuccessfully. In 54 BC Cicero defended Gn. Plancius in a court case (Pro Plancio) in which A. Laterensis accused Plancius of illegally organizing voting clubs (Colegia) to sway the elections and of bribery. Cicero was able to get Plancius acquitted and wrote his Pro Plancio which outlined his speeches and lines of questioning.
7 commentsJay GT4
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602a. Valentinian III31 viewsIn the early years of his reign, Valentinian was overshadowed by his mother. After his marriage in 437, moreover, much of the real authority lay in the hands of the Patrician and Master of Soldiers Aetius. Nor does Valentinian seem to have had much of an aptitude for rule. He is described as spoiled, pleasure-loving, and influenced by sorcerers and astrologers. He divided his time primarily between Rome and Ravenna. Like his mother, Valentinian was devoted to religion. He contributed to churches of St. Laurence in both Rome and Ravenna. He also oversaw the accumulation of ecclesiastical authority in the hands of the bishop of Rome as he granted ever greater authority and prestige to pope Leo the Great (440-461) in particular.

Valentinian's reign saw the continued dissolution of the western empire. By 439, nearly all of North Africa was effectively lost to the Vandals; Valentinian did attempt to neutralize that threat by betrothing his sister Placidia to the Vandal prince Huneric. In Spain, the Suevi controlled the northwest, and much of Gaul was to all intents and purposes controlled by groups of Visigoths, Burgundians, Franks, and Alans. In 454, Valentinian murdered his supreme general Aetius, presumably in an attempt to rule in his own right. But in the next year, he himself was murdered by two members of his bodyguard, ex-partisans of Aetius.

Although Valentinian was ineffectual as a ruler, his legitimate status and connection to the old ruling dynasty provided a last vestige of unity for the increasingly fragmented Roman empire. After his death, the decay of the west accelerated. The different regions of the west went their own way, and the last several western emperors, the so-called "Shadow" or "Puppet" Emperors, not only were usually overshadowed by one barbarian general or other, but also were limited primarily to Italy.
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603. Marcian26 viewsMarcian was born in Thrace or Illyria. He spent his early life as an obscure soldier. He subsequently served for nineteen years under Ardaburius and Aspar, and took part in the wars against the Persians and Vandals. In 431, Marcian was taken prisoner by the Vandals in the fighting near Hippo Regius; brought before the Vandal king Geiseric, he was released on his oath never to take up arms against the Vandals.

Through the influence of these generals he became a captain of the guards, and was later raised to the rank of tribune and senator. On the death of Theodosius II he was chosen as consort by the latter's sister and successor, Pulcheria, and called upon to govern an empire greatly humbled and impoverished by the ravages of the Huns.

Upon becoming Emperor, Marcian repudiated the embarrassing payments of tribute to Attila the Hun, which the latter had been accustomed to receiving from Theodosius in order to refrain from attacks on the eastern empire. Aware that he could never capture the eastern capital of Constantinople, Attila turned to the west and waged his famous campaigns in Gaul 451 and Italy (452) while leaving Marcian's dominions alone.

He reformed the finances, checked extravagance, and repopulated the devastated districts. He repelled attacks upon Syria and Egypt (452), and quelled disturbances on the Armenian frontier (456). The other notable event of his reign is the Council of Chalcedon (451), in which Marcian endeavoured to mediate between the rival schools of theology.

Marcian generally ignored the affairs of the western Roman Empire, leaving that tottering half of the empire to its fate. He did nothing to aid the west during Attila's campaigns, and, living up to his promise, ignored the depredations of Geiseric even when the Vandals sacked Rome in 455. It has recently been argued, however, that Marcian was more actively involved in aiding the western Empire than historians had previously believed and that Marcian's fingerprints can be discerned in the events leading up to, and including, Attila's death. (See Michael A. Babcock, "The Night Attila Died: Solving the Murder of Attila the Hun," Berkley Books, 2005.)

Shortly before Attila's death in 453, conflict had begun again between him and Marcian. However, the powerful Hun king died before all-out war broke out. In a dream, Marcian claimed he saw Attila's bow broken before him, and a few days later, he got word that his great enemy was dead.

Marcian died in 457 of disease, possibly gangrene contracted during a long religious journey.