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Search results - "Gepid,"
Buckle-04_AR_Q-002_28x13mm_5,49g-s.jpg
Buckle #004, AR Buckle,97 viewsBuckle #004, AR Buckle,
type: AR Buckle, the heavy prong/tongue and how it overlaps the buckle.
"I believe 5th - 6th century. The very thick tongue which extends beyond the buckle ring and hooks down is the diagnostic. Likely "Germanic" though there are some thoughts that they were made in Roman/Byzantine Empire for use by groups like Ostrogoths, Gepids and/or Sarmatians." by Shawn Caza, thank you Shawn.
" Early Christian and Byzantine Art. Walters Gallery/Baltimore Museum of Art. Baltimore, 1947: page 99, No. 467A, Plate LXVII. Found in Egypt, 4th century." by Russ, thank you Russ.
size:28x13 mm,
weight:5,49 g,
date:??? A.D.,
ref: ???.
distribution: ???,
Q-002
quadrans
Sirmium_ab.jpg
Gepids/Ostrogoths - Sirmium - quarter siliqua115 viewsGepids independently or under Ostrogothic rule in the name of Anastasius, 1/4-siliqua (16 mm, 0.81 g), minted in Sirmium 491-518 AD. Obverse: diademed head right, DN ANST-SIVS PP C . Reverse: VICTORIA (AVGGG) around SRM in open frame, (CO)NO in exergue. Apparently missing in major references. Two similar coins sold in auctions: NAC 33 (2006) lot 693 and Rauch 81 (2007) lot 816.

2 commentsJan (jbc)
Gepids2_ab.jpg
Gepids/Ostrogoths - Sirmium - quarter siliqua87 viewsGepids under Ostrogothic rule in the name of Anastasius, 1/4-siliqua (13 mm, 0.93 g), minted in Sirmium 491-518 AD. Obverse: diademed and cuirassed bust right, DN ANASTASIVS PP AVC. Reverse: INVIT-A ROMA, MD in exergue copying coins from Mediolanum, monogram of Theoderic the great. Ref. MIB 46.

Ex Rauch Auction 92, lot 1503, 2013
Jan (jbc)
Demo-80.jpg
Gepids: Uncertain King (454-552) AR Quarter Siliqua, Sirmium (MEC-1; Demo-80; Stefan-2; COI, p. 43, Fig. 22; Gennari-111b)14 viewsObv: D N VƧ(M over W)VISTΛIWS P P Λ[VC], pearl-diademed, draped, and cuirassed bust right
Rev: (star) IИMVIT + IROИVΛ, Theoderic monogram

Imitation of a Ravenna mint Quarter Siliqua of Theoderic in the name of Justinian I

Quant.Geek
Fibula-041_Q-003_43,5x18mm_4,65g-s.jpg
Germanic Two-Plate Bow Fibulae / Blechfibeln, with Rectangular Head Plate, #3, Fibula #041, 155 viewsFibula #041, Germanic fibula, #3
type: Germanic fibula. The basic type is called "bow with two plates" or "plate-bow" or, in German Blechfibeln.
This is the round head with three knobs type. This small blech fibula of unknown type might be a variant of the rectangular head plate type.
The reverse shows rust traces from the iron spring. With animal head foot.
size: 43,5x18mm,
weight: 4,65g,
date: Some sources date introduction of the the type as early as c. AD 375. However, c. 520 - 560/580
ref: Stanev 1.3.1, King's Field (for Anglo-Saxon variant),
distribution: Scandinavia, northern/Elbe Germans, some use by Gepids.
Q-003
quadrans
Fibula-009_Q-001_50x21mm_6,96g-s.jpg
Germanic Two-Plate Bow Fibulae / Blechfibeln, with Semi-Circular Head Plate, Germanic fibula, #2, Fibula #009, 227 viewsFibula #009, Germanic fibula, #2
type: Germanic fibula. The basic type is called "bow with two plates" or "plate-bow" or, in German Blechfibeln.
This is the round head with three knobs type. Small blech fibula with three knobs on semi-circular head plate. Very similar to the Krefeld type below but lacks the lateral "caterpillar" and animal head motifs on the foot.
Serbia more likely Gepid, Bulgaria Gepid or more likely Ostrogoth.
The reverse shows rust traces from the iron spring.
size: 50x21mm,
weight: 6,96g,
date: c. A.D. 475-525, some into 7th century,
ref: ,
distribution: Gepid; Chernyakhov culture / Goths.
Q-002
quadrans
Fibula-051_Q-001_35x18mm_4,27g-s.jpg
Germanic Two-Plate Bow Fibulae / Blechfibeln, with Semi-Circular Head Plate, Germanic fibula, #4, Fibula #051,80 viewsGermanic Two-Plate Bow Fibulae / Blechfibeln, with Semi-Circular Head Plate, Germanic fibula, #4, Fibula #051,
type: Germanic fibula. The basic type is called "bow with two plates" or "plate-bow" or, in German Blechfibeln.
This is the round head with three knobs type. Small blech fibula with three knobs on semi-circular head plate. Very similar to the Krefeld type below but lacks the lateral "caterpillar" and animal head motifs on the foot.
Serbia more likely Gepid, Bulgaria Gepid or more likely Ostrogoth.
The reverse shows rust traces from the iron spring.
size: 35x18mm,
weight: 4,27g,
date: c. A.D. 475-525, some into 7th century,
ref: ,
distribution: Gepid; Chernyakhov culture / Goths.
Q-004
quadrans
Fibula-038_Germanic_Q-001_45x22mm_8,44g-s.jpg
Germanic Two-Plate Bow Fibulae / Blechfibeln, with Semi-Circular Head Plate, Germanic fibula, #6, Fibula #038,90 viewsGermanic Two-Plate Bow Fibulae / Blechfibeln, with Semi-Circular Head Plate, Germanic fibula, #6, Fibula #038,
type: Germanic fibula. The basic type is called "bow with two plates" or "plate-bow" or, in German Blechfibeln.
This is the round head with five knobs type. Small blech fibula with five knobs on semi-circular head plate. Very similar to the Krefeld type. Serbia more likely Gepid, Bulgaria Gepid or more likely Ostrogoth.
The reverse shows rust traces from the iron spring.
size: 45x22mm,
weight: 8,44g,
date: c. A.D. 475-525, some into 7th century,
ref: ,
distribution: Gepid; Chernyakhov culture / Goths.
Q-004
1 commentsquadrans
Fibula-008_Q_42x22mm_5,58g-s.jpg
Germanic Two-Plate Bow Fibulae / Blechfibeln, with Semi-Circular Head Plate, Krefeld Type, Germanic fibula, Germanic fibula., Fibula #008, 204 viewsFibula #008
type: Germanic fibula. The basic type is called "bow with two plates" or "plate-bow" or, in German Blechfibeln.
This is the round head with three knobs type. Small fibula with half-round head with three knobs and chip-carved radiate design, straight narrow foot with lateral "caterpillar" ridges and usually animal head foot. A Krefeld type fibula. Note the animal head design of the foot. The reverse shows rust traces from the iron spring.
Serbia more likely Gepid, Bulgaria Gepid or more likely Ostrogoth.
A small variant of this type. Note the animal head design of the foot. The reverse shows rust traces from the iron spring.
size: 42x22mm,
weight: 5,58g,
date: c. A.D. 475-525, some into 7th century,
ref: Krefeld type, Stanev 1.2.3.2,
distribution: Gepid; Chernyakhov culture / Goths. Middle and lower Danube. Northern Serbia and northern Bulgaria. Ostrogothic, likely Theodoric's tribes.
Q-001
quadrans
Fibula-052_Q-001_32x21mm_3,56ga-s.jpg
Germanic Two-Plate Bow Fibulae / Blechfibeln, with Semi-Circular Head Plate, Krefeld Type, Germanic fibula, small Germanic fibula., Fibula #052,65 viewsGermanic Two-Plate Bow Fibulae / Blechfibeln, with Semi-Circular Head Plate, Krefeld Type, Germanic fibula, small Germanic fibula., Fibula #052,
This is the round head with three knobs type. Small fibula with half-round head with three knobs and chip-carved radiate design, straight narrow foot with lateral "caterpillar" ridges and usually animal head foot. A Krefeld type fibula. Note the animal head design of the foot. The reverse shows rust traces from the iron spring.
Serbia more likely Gepid, Bulgaria Gepid or more likely Ostrogoth.
A small variant of this type. Note the animal head design of the foot. The reverse shows rust traces from the iron spring.
size: 32x21mm,
weight: 3,56g,
date: c. A.D. 475-525, some into 7th century,
ref: Krefeld type, Stanev 1.2.3.2,
distribution: Gepid; Chernyakhov culture / Goths. Middle and lower Danube. Northern Serbia and northern Bulgaria. Ostrogothic, likely Theodoric's tribes.
Q-001
quadrans
Fibula-German-Q-a-s.jpg
Germanic, Gepidic, A group of Gepidic fibula.111 viewsGermanic, Gepidic, A group of Gepidic fibula.quadrans
justinus_imit.JPG
Justin I follis-imitation90 viewsImitation after a follis of Justinus I, possibly the Gepids. Nicomedia mint, 3rd officina, 27mm, 9.3g. The coin is under the official weight, the style is crude and bears an unexistend 3rd officina from Nicomedia.vercingetorix
Dark-Age,_Otrogoth-Gepid,_AR_quarter_Siliqua,_Sirmium_Group,_Anastasius,_Alain_Gennari_38bvar__2_4,_Monogram_(10),_Q-001,_4h,_16-17mm,_0,71g-s.jpg
Ostrogoth, Gepid, (The age of exodus/Dark ages) Sirmium, AR-1/4-Siliqua, "Anastasius or Justin" type, Alain Gennari No: 038bvar., Monogram of Theoderich (Alain Gennari type 10.), Extremely Rare! 152 viewsOstrogoth, Gepid, (The age of exodus/Dark ages) Sirmium, AR-1/4-Siliqua, "Anastasius or Justin" type, Alain Gennari No: 038bvar., Monogram of Theoderich (Alain Gennari type 10.), Extremely Rare!
avers: D II IHVIIƧTAIIWS P P Λ, Diademed and cuirassed bust right.
reverse: ✠ TIVINH * dΩVIIΛ, Stylized "Theoderich" monogram (Alain Gennari type 10.).
exergue: -/-//--, diameter: 16,0-17,0mm, weight: 0,71g, axis: 4h,
mint: Sirmium group, date: 491-526 A.D., ref: Alain Gennari, 038bvar. (avers type: 144, reverse type: 181, monogram type 10), Extremely Rare!
Q-001
This coin attributed by the Alain Gennari article:
"The "Sirmium group": about the so-called Gepids siliquae
With a specific catalogue -2ⁿᵈ edition, Parma Oktober 2017"
https://www.forumancientcoins.com/board/index.php?topic=113140.0
2 commentsquadrans
Theoderich-493-526AD-Ostrogoth-or-Gepid-Dark-Age_Ar-quarter-Siliqua_DN-ANASTASIVS-PP-AV_star-AINVIMA-ROMANl-Theoderich-Monogram_Sirmium_Q-001_0h_16-17mm_0,47gx-s.jpg
Ostrogoth, Gepid, (The age of exodus/Dark ages) Sirmium, AR-1/4-Siliqua, "Anastasius" type, Alain Gennari No: 068, *ɅINVIMɅ ROMɅИI, Monogram of Theoderich (Alain Gennari type 24.), 140 viewsAs a "chocolate paper" copy of the original coin !!!
Ostrogoth, Gepid, (The age of exodus/Dark ages) Sirmium, AR-1/4-Siliqua, "Anastasius" type, Alain Gennari No: 068, *ɅINVIMɅ ROMɅИI, Monogram of Theoderich (Alain Gennari type 24.),
avers: D N ANAƧTAƧIVƧ P P AV (all S are invers), (In the name of Anastasius ), Pearl-diademed and cuirassed bust right.
reverse: *ɅINVIMɅ ROMɅИI, Stylized "Theoderich" monogram (Alain Gennari type 24.).
exergue: -/-//--, diameter: 16-17mm, weight: 0,47g, axis: 0h,
mint: Sirmium ,date: 493-526 A.D., ref: Alain Gennari No: 068, (avers type: 134, reverse type: 162, monogram type 24)
Q-001
This coin attributed by the Alain Gennari article:
"The "Sirmium group": about the so-called Gepids siliquae
With a specific catalogue -2ⁿᵈ edition, Parma Oktober 2017"
https://www.forumancientcoins.com/board/index.php?topic=113140.0

I used on this thread :
http://www.forumancientcoins.com/board/index.php?topic=110289.msg673332#msg673332
1 commentsquadrans
Theoderich-493-526AD-Ostrogoth-or-Gepid-Dark-Age_Ar-quarter-Siliqua_DN-ANASTASIVS-PP-AV_star-AINVIMA-ROMANl-Theoderich-Monogram_Sirmium_Q-001_0h_16-17mm_0,47g-s.jpg
Ostrogoth, Gepid, (The age of exodus/Dark ages) Sirmium, AR-1/4-Siliqua, "Anastasius" type, Alain Gennari No: 068, *ɅINVIMɅ-ROMɅИI, Monogram of Theoderich (Alain Gennari type 24.), Extremely Rare!141 viewsOstrogoth, Gepid, (The age of exodus/Dark ages) Sirmium, AR-1/4-Siliqua, "Anastasius" type, Alain Gennari No: 068, *ɅINVIMɅ ROMɅИI, Monogram of Theoderich (Alain Gennari type 24.), Extremely Rare!
avers: D N ANAƧTAƧIVƧ P P AV (all S are invers), (In the name of Anastasius ), Pearl-diademed and cuirassed bust right.
reverse: *ɅINVIMɅ ROMɅИI, Stylized "Theoderich" monogram (Alain Gennari type 24.). Extremely Rare!
exergue: -/-//--, diameter: 16-17mm, weight: 0,47g, axis: 0h,
mint: Sirmium ,date: 493-526 A.D., ref: Alain Gennari No: 068, (avers type: 134, reverse type: 162, monogram type 24)
Q-001
This coin attributed by the Alain Gennari article:
"The "Sirmium group": about the so-called Gepids siliquae
With a specific catalogue -2ⁿᵈ edition, Parma Oktober 2017"
https://www.forumancientcoins.com/board/index.php?topic=113140.0
1 commentsquadrans
Ostrogoth-or-Gepid-Dark-Age_Ar-quarter-Siliqua_DN-ANASTASIVS-P-A_VIN-VITA-ROMANl-Monogram_-_Q-001_5h_15-16mm_0,83g-s.jpg
Ostrogoth, Gepid, (The age of exodus/Dark ages) Sirmium, AR-1/4-Siliqua, "Anastasius" type, Alain Gennari No: 090, Monogram of Theoderich (Alain Gennari type 18), Rare!180 viewsOstrogoth, Gepid, (The age of exodus/Dark ages) Sirmium, AR-1/4-Siliqua, "Anastasius" type, Alain Gennari No: 090, Monogram of Theoderich (Alain Gennari type 18), Rare!
avers: D N ANASTASIVS P AV, Diademed and cuirassed bust right.
reverse: VIN VITA ✠ A ROMANI *, Stylized "Theoderich" monogram (Alain Gennari type 18).
exergue: -/-//--, diameter: 21,0mm, weight: 0,78g, axis: 1h,
mint: Sirmium ,date: 493-526 A.D., ref: Alain Gennari 090, (avers type: 47, reverse type :64, monogram type: 18), Rare!
Q-001
This coin attributed by the Alain Gennari article:
"The "Sirmium group": about the so-called Gepids siliquae
With a specific catalogue -2ⁿᵈ edition, Parma Oktober 2017"
https://www.forumancientcoins.com/board/index.php?topic=113140.0
2 commentsquadrans
Dark-Age,_Ostrogoth-Gepid,_AR_quarter_Siliqua,_Sirmium,_D_N_ANASTASIVS_P_A,_VIN_VICTA_ARVHANl,_Monogram,_AG_106_Q-001,_5,5h,_15-16,5mm,_0,67g-s.jpg
Ostrogoth, Gepid, (The age of exodus/Dark ages) Sirmium, AR-1/4-Siliqua, "Anastasius" type, Alain Gennari No: 106, Monogram of Theoderich (Alain Gennari type 10.), Very Rare!135 viewsOstrogoth, Gepid, (The age of exodus/Dark ages) Sirmium, AR-1/4-Siliqua, "Anastasius" type, Alain Gennari No: 106, Monogram of Theoderich (Alain Gennari type 10.), Very Rare!
avers: D Ͷ ΛͶΛSTASIVS P ΛV, Diademed and cuirassed bust right.
reverse: ΛINVICTΛ ✠ ΛRVMΛNI *, Stylized "Theoderich" monogram (Alain Gennari type 10.). Very Rare!
exergue: -/-//--, diameter: 15,0-16,5mm, weight: 0,67g, axis: 5h,
mint: Sirmium group, date: 491-526 A.D., ref: Alain Gennari, 106. (avers type: 59, reverse type: 78, monogram type 10)
Q-001
This coin attributed by the Alain Gennari article:
"The "Sirmium group": about the so-called Gepids siliquae
With a specific catalogue -2ⁿᵈ edition, Parma Oktober 2017"
https://www.forumancientcoins.com/board/index.php?topic=113140.0
quadrans
Barbar_Ar-quarter-Siliqua_OV-HI-IVSTINVS-99_no_text_Q-001_1h_15,5-16mm_0,69g-s.jpg
Ostrogoth, Gepid, (The age of exodus/Dark ages) Sirmium, AR-1/4-Siliqua, "Justin I." type, Alain Gennari No: 126b, No monogram, Plate coin, Figure 26.(and 126b) this coin!, Unique!!!139 viewsOstrogoth, Gepid, (The age of exodus/Dark ages) Sirmium, AR-1/4-Siliqua, "Justin I." type, Alain Gennari No: 126b, No monogram, Plate coin, Figure 26.(and 126b) this coin!, Unique!!!
avers: D N HIIIVSTSIVS ꟼ ꟼ Λ, The name of Justin I. The Legend are affected the diademed and cuirassed bust right,
reverse: No legend, Two person sitting face to face, between the third person who standing facing, holding the long cross in right hands and the small thing in the left hand.
exergue: -/-//--, diameter: 15,5-16,0mm, weight: 0,69g, axis: 1h,
mint: Sirmium, date: A.D., ref: Alain Gennari 126b, (avers type: 158, reverse type :202, monogram No monogram!) Plate coin Figure 26. this coin! Unique!!!
Q-001
This coin attributed by the Alain Gennari article:
"The "Sirmium group": about the so-called Gepids siliquae
With a specific catalogue -2ⁿᵈ edition, Parma Oktober 2017"
https://www.forumancientcoins.com/board/index.php?topic=113140.0
quadrans
Barbar_Ar-quarter-Siliqua_IVSTINVS-II-name_Styl-Monogram_Gepida_Sirmium_Rauch-81_lotNo-815_Q-001_1h_21mm_0,78ga-s.jpg
Ostrogoth, Gepid, (The age of exodus/Dark ages) Sirmium, AR-1/4-Siliqua, "Justin I." type, Alain Gennari No: 158, Cunimund monogram, Simplified monogram of Theoderich (Alain Gennari type 48., Plate coin, Figure 17. this coin!), Very Rare!193 viewsOstrogoth, Gepid, (The age of exodus/Dark ages) Sirmium, AR-1/4-Siliqua, "Justin I." type, Alain Gennari No: 158, Cunimund monogram, Simplified monogram of Theoderich (Alain Gennari type 48., Plate coin, Figure 17. this coin!), Very Rare!
avers: DN IVSTINV*PNVI, The name of Justin I. The Legend are affected the diademed head right,
reverse: No legend, Stylized monogram, Alain Gennari: Type 48.
exergue: -/-//--, diameter: 21,0mm, weight: 0,78g, axis: 1h,
mint: ,date: A.D., ref: MIB - (cf 50), cf Metlich, Ostrogothic Italy, S. 43, Abb. 23. RR s.sch. ,( another exampl: Ref:H.D.Rauch 81, Lot. No.:815,) Alain Gennari 158, (avers type: 93, reverse type :111, monogram type:48) Plate coin Figure 17. this coin! Very Rare!
Q-001
This coin attributed by the Alain Gennari article:
"The "Sirmium group": about the so-called Gepids siliquae
With a specific catalogue -2ⁿᵈ edition, Parma Oktober 2017"
https://www.forumancientcoins.com/board/index.php?topic=113140.0
quadrans
Barbar_Ar-quarter-Siliqua_DN-ANASTASIVS-P-A_VIN-VITA-ROMAl-Monogram_-_Q-001_axis-5h_15-16mm_0,83g-s.jpg
SUB-ROMAN, Ostrogoth, Gepid, (The age of exodus/Dark ages) Sirmium, AR-1/4-Siliqua, "Anastasius" type, Alain Gennari No: 090, Monogram of Theoderich (Alain Gennari type 18), Rare! 305 viewsOstrogoth, Gepid, (The age of exodus/Dark ages) Sirmium, AR-1/4-Siliqua, "Anastasius" type, Alain Gennari No: 090, Monogram of Theoderich (Alain Gennari type 18), Rare!
avers: D N ANASTASIVS P AV, Diademed and cuirassed bust right.
reverse: VIN VITA ✠ A ROMANI *, Stylized "Theoderich" monogram (Alain Gennari type 18).
exergue: -/-//--, diameter: 21,0mm, weight: 0,78g, axis: 1h,
mint: Sirmium ,date: 493-526 A.D., ref: Alain Gennari 090, (avers type: 47, reverse type :64, monogram type: 18), Rare!
Q-001
This coin attributed by the Alain Gennari article:
"The "Sirmium group": about the so-called Gepids siliquae
With a specific catalogue -2ⁿᵈ edition, Parma Oktober 2017"
https://www.forumancientcoins.com/board/index.php?topic=113140.0
1 commentsquadrans
Barbar_Ar-quarter-Siliqua_IVSTINVS-II-name_Styl-Monogram_Gepida_Sirmium_Rauch-81_lotNo-815_Q-001_axis-1h_21mm_0,78g-s.jpg
SUB-ROMAN, Ostrogoth, Gepid, (The age of exodus/Dark ages) Sirmium, AR-1/4-Siliqua, "Justin I." type, Alain Gennari No: 158, Cunimund monogram, Simplified monogram of Theoderich, Very Rare!610 viewsOstrogoth, Gepid, (The age of exodus/Dark ages) Sirmium, AR-1/4-Siliqua, "Justin I." type, Alain Gennari No: 158, Cunimund monogram, Simplified monogram of Theoderich (Alain Gennari type 48., Plate coin, Figure 17. this coin!), Very Rare!
avers: DN IVSTINV*PNVI, The name of Justin I. The Legend are affected the diademed head right,
reverse: No legend, Stylized monogram, Alain Gennari: Type 48.
exergue: -/-//--, diameter: 21,0mm, weight: 0,78g, axis: 1h,
mint: ,date: A.D., ref: MIB - (cf 50), cf Metlich, Ostrogothic Italy, S. 43, Abb. 23. RR s.sch. ,( another exampl: Ref:H.D.Rauch 81, Lot. No.:815,) Alain Gennari 158, (avers type: 93, reverse type :111, monogram type:48) Plate coin Figure 17. this coin! Very Rare!
Q-001
This coin attributed by the Alain Gennari article:
"The "Sirmium group": about the so-called Gepids siliquae
With a specific catalogue -2ⁿᵈ edition, Parma Oktober 2017"
https://www.forumancientcoins.com/board/index.php?topic=113140.0
quadrans
TrajanDeciusRIC11b.jpg
[1108a] Trajan Decius, July 249 - June or July 251 A.D. 144 viewsSilver antoninianus, RIC 11b, RSC 4, choice EF, Rome mint, 3.923g, 23.3mm, 0o, 249 - 251 A.D.; Obverse: IMP C M Q TRAIANVS DECIVS AVG, radiate and cuirassed bust right, from behind; Reverse: ADVENTVS AVG, Trajan Decius on horseback left, raising right hand and holding scepter. Ex FORVM.


De Imperatoribus Romanis,
An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Emperors

Trajan Decius (249-251 A.D.) and Usurpers During His Reign

Geoffrey Nathan and Robin McMahon

Geoffrey Nathan
San Diego State University



Early Life and Public Career

Any discussion of Decius (and for most third century emperors) must be prefaced by an understanding that the historical tradition is incomplete, fragmentary, and not wholly trustworthy. Any reconstruction of his life and reign will therefore be to some degree speculative. With that caveat in mind, Gaius Messius Quintus Decius was born, to a provincial yet aristocratic Senatorial family during the transitional Severan age, possibly in 201. His family may have been from Italian stock, although that is by no means certain. Attempts to describe his life previous to the consulship are problematic, although he did serve as governor in Moesia in the mid-230's. That also means that Decius probably had been a member of the Senate for some time. We know little else about his early life, other than at some point he married Herennia Cupressenia Etruscilla, apparently from the Senatorial ordo as well. His political fortunes rose in the troubled 240's. As instability grew in the mid-third century, Philip the Arab charged Decius, suffect consul for 249, with restoring order along the Danubian frontier. In addition to the border unrest, a low-level army officer, Tiberius Claudius Marinus Pacatianus, had led a rebellion of the armies in Pannonia and Moesia. For a short time, Marinus apparently claimed the imperial purple and along with movements of the Gepidae, represented a clear threat to the stability of Philip's rule.

Philip's decision to send Decius was perhaps more motivated by political expediency than by any great confidence in his military abilities. Decius had an aristocratic pedigree, and so was likely to have been a popular choice with a Senate that was increasingly doubtful of Philip's abilities. He was also a native of Sirmium in Pannonia Inferior, and so was likely familiar with the intricacies of life and politics in the region. Finally, he had, of course, served as governor of the wayward province, and thus undoubtedly had connections there among the civil and military curia--ones that Philip hoped Decius could exploit. Thus, the consul was charged with restoring order along one of the Empire's most problematic borders. Accompanied by his son, Herennius, Decius traveled to Moesia, probably to reclaim the Legio IV Flavia Felix and possibly the Legio XI, both of which were stationed in that province.

Shortly before his arrival, Marinus was killed and local troops quickly named Decius emperor, encouraging him to assert this newfound responsibility in a war against Philip. Philip's inability to deal decisively with the worsening military crises on the borders, the fear of punishment, and the opportunity for enrichment no doubt motivated the soldiers to place the purple on a local leader--a now increasingly common practice. Decius' lineage also probably appealed to traditionalists in Rome, who begrudged Philip his humble origins and his possible involvement in the death of Gordian III. Philip led out an army in June of 249 to meet his newest rival for the purple and at an unknown location (possibly Verona or Beroea) lost the battle. Whether Philip died in the fighting or was assassinated by his own troops--another increasingly common practice--is unknown. Philip's son, Philip Junior, recently made an Augustus, was quickly put to death by the Praetorian Guard in Rome. Decius was the first emperor to come from the Balkans region. How much he wanted to serve is unknown. While this account undoubtedly contains fictional elements, with several popular literary topoi, the rough outlines of the story are undoubtedly true: we have epigraphic evidence in July for support among the Pannonian Legio X, suggesting that Decius owed his accession in no small part to local troops

Publicity and Power
The victory of an established Senatorial aristocrat was one that seemed to reassert the authority and place of traditional political power, despite the means of Decius' ascension. The new emperor, no doubt aware of the perils of his position, seems to have embarked upon a highly conservative program of imperial propaganda to endear himself to the Roman aristocracy and to the troops who had thrust the purple upon him. One of his earliest acts was to take the honorific name of Trajan, whose status as the greatest of all emperors after Augustus was now becoming firmly established. The fact that Trajan had commanded legions in Upper Germany and had close links to both Pannonia and Moesia at the time of his accession invited the comparison. The name was cleverly chosen: Trajan had been an active and successful general throughout his reign, but had also established a reputation for a widely popular civil government.

Decius also served as consul in every year of his reign and took for himself traditional republican powers, another way to underscore his authority and conservatism. He even tried to revive the long defunct office of censor in 251, purportedly offering it to the future emperor, Valerian. Decius moreover portrayed himself as an activist general and soldier. In addition to leading military campaigns personally, he often directly bestowed honors upon his troops, high and low alike. He also holds the dubious distinction of being the first emperor to have died fighting a foreign army in battle. Finally, in 250, he associated his sons Herennius and Hostilianus in his rule by making them Caesars, eventually raising the former (and elder) to Augustus. Undoubtedly, Decius sought to create a dynasty in much the same way the Gordians had in the previous decade. This traditionalism may to be a large extent, however, a construction rather than a reality. When we abandon the literary tradition and look instead at other forms of evidence, his imperial aims are less clear. The legal record, extremely thin, is only vaguely supportive of a conservative policy: most of his surviving enactments deal with private law issues consistent with earlier Severan jurisprudence.

On the other hand in late 249, when Decius returned to Rome, he embarked upon an active building program in the capital. After a destructive fire, he extensively restored the Colosseum. He later commissioned the opulent Decian Baths along the Aventine. He perhaps also was responsible for the construction of the Decian Portico. Such activities contrasted to a twenty-year period of relative building inactivity. Both the kind of building projects and their stylistic qualities suggest an attempt to recall the glories of the past. The numismatic evidence also suggests some degree of traditionalism. It is there that we see the first references to Trajan Decius, as well as an association with both Pannonia and Dacia. His Liberitas and Uberitas issues, combined with his wife's Pudicitia and his sons' Princeps Iuventi coins, all seem to rearticulate traditional ideology. Legends tend to be conservative, so this is hardly surprising, but there were no great innovations to suggest a new set of ideological principles. In sum, while the literary reconstructions of Decius' life are problematic, it seems clear that traditionalism was an important factor in his administration, especially in the wake of Philip's reign.

The Persecution of Christians
Another possible aspect of this conservatism was a reported wide-scale attack on the growing Christian minority. The third century saw the slow creation of sizeable communities in the Empire's urban populations. For the first time, if we are to believe Christian sources, an Empire-wide persecution of Christians was begun under Decius. The state required all citizens to sacrifice to the state gods and be in receipt of a libellus, a certificate from a temple confirming the act. The rationale for the emperor's actions, however, is not entirely clear. Eusebius writes he did so because he hated Philip, who purportedly was a secret Christian. Probably the enmity was real, but it seems unconnected to the introduction of these policies. More likely, if Decius did indeed seek to persecute Christians, he was reacting to the growing visibility of the religion, especially in the city of Rome itself. One of the more prominent martyrs of the age was Fabian, the bishop of the imperial capital.

But the new policy of public religiosity was much more probably a program to reassert traditional public piety, consistent with some of the other conservative initiatives introduced during the emperor's short reign. The libelli themselves were largely generalized in nature and language, and there is no implication that they were directed at any one group per se. Whatever intended effect it may have had on Christianity was thus to a degree unplanned. Christians would have no doubt seen it differently. It is possible then that fourth and fifth century Christian polemicists have misinterpreted (whether purposefully or not) Decius' libelli. In the particular cases of Eusebius and Lactantius, both wrote in the wake of the great persecution of Diocletian and no doubt magnified upon the theme of the tyrant-persecutor. A hostile tradition notwithstanding, the new requirements did impact Christians most acutely, causing considerable division in the growing ranks of the new religion.

Imperial and Military Problems
Like other third century emperors, Decius was not free of threats to his authority, either from within or without. The revolt of Jotapianus, either in Syria or Cappadocia, had actually begun in Philip's reign, but was quickly quelled after Decius' accession. Probably the usurper's own soldiers murdered the would-be emperor, since the accounts state that his body was delivered to Decius while still in Rome in the summer of 249.
A potentially more serious revolt broke out while Decius was out of Rome in 250 fighting the Goths. Julius Valens Licinianus, also a member of the Senatorial aristocracy with some popular support, took the purple at the Empire's capital. It appears to have been relatively short-lived grab for power, ending in a few days with his execution. The governor of Macedon, Titus Julius Priscus, also permitted himself to be proclaimed Augustus at Philippopolis towards the end of 251, probably with Gothic collusion. The Senate declared him a public enemy almost as soon as he chose usurpation. He probably survived Decius, but is likely to have perished when Gallus became emperor.

Of greater concern than sporadic rebellions, which were relatively minor, were the vitreous northern borders. For the first time, a new and aggressive Germanic people, the Goths, crossed into and raided Roman territory in the 250's. At the time of Decius' forced accession, the Gepidae and the Carpi were both raiding deep into the Moesian provinces. They, along with the Goths, raided Pannonia and Dacia as well. Decius was forced to fight campaigns each year of his reign, doing his best to keep the borders stable.

His final campaign in 251 led to the death of his son, Herennius, and to his own. Decius led a successful attack on the Carpi, pushing them out of Dacia. But Moesia Inferior had been left largely undefended and Cniva, king of the Goths, led a sizeable portion of his army into the province. The emperor, after chasing the Germanic force around the region, engaged Cniva's forces outside of Philippopolis, which had recently been sacked by the king and held by the rebel, Priscus. It was here that his elder son was slain by an arrow and the emperor, seeking to reassure his troops, famously proclaimed that the death of one soldier was not a great loss to the Republic. Cniva then led his troops homeward, laden with the spoils of war. The loss became Decius' undoing. Trebonianus Gallus, one of the emperor's commanders, may have revolted, although it is not entirely clear. Instead of regrouping his forces and re-securing the borders, Decius unwisely sought to chase down Cniva before he left Roman territory. His decision may have been motivated by his son's death (despite his insistence otherwise) or it may have been an attempt to salvage what had been a failed campaign. In either case, it was ill-advised.

It was at Abrittus, about 100 kilometers northeast of Nicopolis that Decius finally met his death. Hoping to cut off Cniva's escape route (and perhaps minimize any help from Gallus), Decius' army was itself cut off in the marshy terrain. The details are sketchy, but Cniva divided his seventy thousand man army into three groups and surrounded the emperor's force. On July 1st, the emperor and most of his troops were slain. In the aftermath, the survivors named Trebonianus Gallus emperor, a decision subsequently confirmed by the Senate. Some contemporaries called the death tragic; others heroic. An Altar of Decius was erected where the emperor fell, still apparently famous two centuries later. Decius and Herennius may have even been deified. Christian polemicists, as might be expected, took pleasure in describing Decius' body being stripped and left on the battlefield to be devoured by animals. Whatever else, his was the first death of an emperor at the hands of an enemy of Rome. But even the account of his death, along with that of his son, must be looked on suspiciously. Their deaths bring to mind the sacrificial devotions of the famous Republican Decii father and son, P. Decius Mus senior and junior. The circumstances of Decius' death, therefore, are perhaps as opaque as those of his accession.

Assessment
In spite of gaining some modicum of praise from both ancient and modern observers, Decius' reign was not well-suited to the demands of a rapidly changing empire. 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. This best sums up Decius Trajan's reign.

Ancient Sources

Relatively little remains about Decius' reign. If there were a biography of Decius in the SHA, it no longer survives, although there are scattered references to his rule in the biographies of Claudius II Gothicus and Aurelian. Zosimus, i: 21-23, Aurelius Victor, 29-30, Zonaras 12, Eutropius 9, Jordanes Get. 17-8, and Sylvius Polemius 37-40 have brief accounts of his reign. There are fragments in John of Antioch, fr. 148 and Dexippus, fr. 18. Eusebius, vi: 39-41, vii:1, 11, 22, and viii:4, discusses his persecution, and there are passing references to his persecution in Socrates and Lactantius. Inscriptions and coinage are relatively abundant.

Copyright (C) 2002, Geoffrey Nathan and Robin McMahon. Published on De Imperatoribus Romanis, An Online Encyclopedia of the Roman Emperors and their Families; http://www.roman-emperors.org/decius.htm. Used by permission.

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.
1 commentsCleisthenes
Justinan1Nikomedia.jpg
[1611a] Justinian I, 4 April 527 - 14 November 565 A.D.68 viewsBronze follis, S 201, choice VF, 22.147g, 43.8mm, 180o, 2nd officina, Nikomedia mint, 541 - 542 A.D.; Obverse: D N IVSTINIANVS PP AVG, helmeted and cuirassed bust facing, globus cruciger in right, shield decorated with a horseman brandishing a spear, cross right; Reverse: large M, cross above, ANNO left, Xu (= year 15) right, B below, NIKO in ex; full circle strike on a huge flan. Ex FORVM.



De Imperatoribus Romanis
An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Emperors

Justinian (527-565 A.D.).

James Allan Evans
University of British Columbia

Introduction
The reign of Justinian was a turning-point in Late Antiquity. It is the period when paganism finally lost its long struggle to survive, and when the schism in Christianity between the Monophysite east and the Chalcedonian west became insurmountable. From a military viewpoint, it marked the last time that the Roman Empire could go on the offensive with hope of success. Africa and Italy were recovered, and a foothold was established in Spain. When Justinian died, the frontiers were still intact although the Balkans had been devastated by a series of raids and the Italian economy was in ruins. His extensive building program has left us the most celebrated example of Byzantine ecclesiastical architecture that still survives: Hagia Sophia in modern Istanbul. His reign was a period when classical culture was in sharp decline and yet it had a last flowering, with historians such as Procopius and Agathias working within the tradition inherited from Herodotus and Thucydides, and poets such as Paul the Silentiary who wrote some of the most sensuous poems that the classical tradition has ever produced. The Codex Justinianus, the Institutes and the Digest of Roman jurisprudence, all commissioned by Justinian, are monuments to the past achievements of Roman legal heritage. Justinian's reign sums up the past. It also provides a matrix for the future. In particular, there was the bubonic plague, which appeared in Constantinople in 542, for the first time in Europe, and then travelled round the empire in search of victims, returning to the capital for a new crop in 558. The plague ended a period of economic growth and initiated one of overstrained resources.

The 'Nika' Revolt
The 'Nika' Revolt which broke out in January, 532, in Constantinople, was an outburst of street violence which went far beyond the norms even in a society where a great deal of street violence was accepted. Every city worth notice had its chariot-racing factions which took their names from their racing colors: Reds, Whites, Blues and Greens. These were professional organizations initially responsible for fielding chariot-racing teams in the hippodromes, though by Justinian's time they were in charge of other shows as well. The Blues and the Greens were dominant, but the Reds and Whites attracted some supporters: the emperor Anastasius was a fan of the Reds. The aficionados of the factions were assigned their own blocs of seats in the Hippodrome in Constantinople, opposite the imperial loge, and the Blue and Green "demes" provided an outlet for the energies of the city's young males. G. M. Manojlovic in an influential article originally published in Serbo-Croat in 1904, argued that the "demes" were organized divisions of a city militia, and thus played an important role in the imperial defense structure. His thesis is now generally disregarded and the dominant view is that of Alan Cameron, that demos, whether used in the singular or plural, means simply "people" and the rioting of the "demes", the "fury of the Hippodrome", as Edward Gibbon called it, was hooliganism, which was also Gibbon's view. Efforts to make the Greens into supporters of Monophysitism and the Blues of Orthodoxy founder on lack of evidence. However, in support of Manojlovic's thesis, it must be said that, although we cannot show that the Blue and Green "demes" were an organized city militia, we hear of "Young Greens" both in Constantinople and Alexandria who bore arms, and in 540, when Antioch fell to the Persians, Blue and Green street-fighters continued to defend the city after the regular troops had fled.

Justinian and Theodora were known Blue supporters, and when street violence escalated under Justin I, Procopius claims that they encouraged it. But since Justinian became emperor he had taken a firmer, more even-handed stand. On Saturday, January 10, 532, the city prefect Eudaemon who had arrested some hooligans and found seven guilty of murder, had them hanged outside the city at Sycae, across the Golden Horn, but the scaffold broke and saved two of them from death, a Blue and a Green. Some monks from St. Conon's monastery nearby took the two men to sanctuary at the church of St Lawrence where the prefect set troops to watch. The following Tuesday while the two malefactors were still trapped in the church, the Blues and Greens begged Justinian to show mercy. He ignored the plea and made no reply. The Blues and Green continued their appeals until the twenty-second race (out of twenty-four) when they suddenly united and raised the watchword 'Nika'. Riots started and the court took refuge in the palace. That evening the mob burned the city prefect's praetorium.

Justinian tried to continue the games next day but only provoked more riot and arson. The rioting and destruction continued throughout the week; even the arrival of loyal troops from Thrace failed to restore order. On Sunday before sunrise, Justinian appeared in the Hippodrome where he repented publicly and promised an amnesty. The mob turned hostile, and Justinian retreated. The evening before Justinian had dismissed two nephews of the old emperor Anastasius, Hypatius and Pompey, against their will, from the palace and sent them home, and now the mob found Hypatius and proclaimed him emperor in the Hippodrome. Justinian was now ready to flee, and perhaps would have done so except for Theodora, who did not frighten easily. Instead Justinian decided to strike ruthlessly. Belisarius and Mundo made their separate ways into the Hippodrome where they fell on Hypatius' supporters who were crowded there, and the 'Nika' riot ended with a bloodbath.

A recent study of the riot by Geoffrey Greatrex has made the point that what was unique about it was not the actions of the mob so much as Justinian's attempts to deal with it. His first reaction was to placate: when the mob demanded that three of his ministers must go, the praetorian prefect of the East, John the Cappadocian, the Quaestor of the Sacred Palace Tribonian and the urban prefect Eudaemon, Justinian replaced them immediately. He hesitated when he should have been firm and aggravated the situation. It may well have been Theodora who emboldened him for the final act of repression. Procopius imagines Theodora on the last day engaging in formal debate about what should be done, and misquoting a famous maxim that was once offered the tyrant of Syracuse, Dionysius the Elder "Tyranny is a good shroud." Theodora emends it to "Kingship is a good shroud" and readers of Procopius may have thought wryly that the emendation was unnecessary. The formal debate, and Theodora's great scene, was probably a creation of Procopius' imagination, but a splendid one.

The 'Nika' revolt left Justinian firmly in charge. The mob was cowed and the senatorial opposition that surfaced during the revolt was forced underground. The damage to Constantinople was great, but it cleared the way for Justinian's own building program. Work in his new church of Hagia Sophia to replace the old Hagia Sophia that was destroyed in the rioting, started only forty-five days after the revolt was crushed. The two leaders of the Hippodrome massacre, Mundo and Belisarius, went on to new appointments: Mundo back to Illyricum as magister militum and Belisarius to make his reputation as the conqueror of the Vandals in Africa. The 530s were a decade of confidence and the 'Nika' riot was only a momentary crisis.

(for a detailed account of the reign of Justinian I, see: http://www.roman-emperors.org/justinia.htm)

Last Years
Misfortune crowded into the final years of Justinian's reign. There was another Samaritan revolt in midsummer, 556. Next year, in December, a great earthquake shook Constantinople and in May of the following year, the dome of Justinian's new Hagia Sophia collapsed, and had to be rebuilt with a new design. About the same time, the plague returned to the capital. Then in early 559 a horde of Kutrigur 'Huns' (proto-Bulgars) crossed the frozen Danube and advanced into the Balkans. It split into three columns: one pushed into Greece but got no further than Thermopylae, another advanced into the Gallipoli peninsula but got no further than the Long Wall, which was defended by a young officer from Justinian's native city, while the third, most dangerous spearhead led by the 'Hun' khan, Zabergan himself, made for Constantinople. Faced with this attack and without any forces for defense, Justinian called Belisarius out of retirement, and Belisarius, using a scratch force, the core of which was 300 of his veterans, ambushed the Kutrigur horde and routed it. Once the immediate danger was over, however, Justinian recalled Belisarius and took charge himself. The news that Justinian was reinforcing his Danube fleet made the Kutrigurs anxious and they agreed to a treaty which gave them a subsidy and safe passage back across the river. But as soon as they were north of the Danube, they were attacked by their rivals the Utigurs who were incited by Justinian to relieve them of their booty. The Kutrigurs raided Thrace again in 562, but they and the Utigurs were soon to fall prey to the Avars who swept out of the Asian steppes in the early 560s.

There was discontent in the capital. Street violence was on the increase again. There were bread shortages and water shortages. In late 562, there was a conspiracy which almost succeeded in killing the emperor. The chief conspirator was Marcellus, an argyroprates, a goldsmith and banker, and the conspiracy probably reflected the dissatisfaction of the business community. But Justinian was too old to learn to be frugal. He resorted to forced loans and requisitions and his successor found the treasury deeply in debt.

What remained of the great emperor's achievement? His successor Justin II, out of a combination of necessity and foolhardiness, denied the 'barbarians' the subsidies which had played a major role in Justinian's defense of the frontiers, and, to be fair, which had also been provided by emperors before him. Subsidies had been part of Anastasius' policy as well, but that was before the plague, while the imperial economy was still expanding. The result of Justin II's change of policy was renewed hostility with Persia and a shift of power in the Balkans. In 567 the Avars and Lombards joined forces against the Gepids and destroyed them. But the Lombards distrusted their allies and next year they migrated into Italy where Narses had just been removed from command and recalled, though he disobeyed orders and stayed in Rome until his death. By the end of the century only a third of Italy was in Byzantine hands. On the eastern frontier, Justin alienated the Ghassanid allies and lost the fortress of Daras, a reverse which overwhelmed his frangible sanity. For this Justinian can hardly be blamed. No one can deny his greatness; a recent study by Asterios Gerostergios even lionizes him. But if we look at his reign with the unforgiving eye of hindsight, it appears to be a brilliant effort to stem the tide of history, and in the end, it was more a failure than a moderate success.

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

The Church we know today as Hagia Sophia - or Divine Wisdom, its true name - was dedicated by the Emperor Justinian in 537AD. Through many visitudes Justinian's cathedral church of Constantinople still stands, its soring vaults and amazing dome testiments to the human spirit, the engineering talents of its builders and Divine inspiration. In the same fashion that Vespasian's Collesium (the Flavian Amphitheatre) is symbolic of Rome, Justinian's Hagia Sophia is a symbol of Byzantium.

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.
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