Macrinus, 11 April 217 - 8 June 218 A.D.

Macrinus was the Praetorian prefect during the reign of the murderous Caracalla. Macrinus arranged Caracalla's assassination and he and his son Diadumenian seized power and were accepted by the senate. Macrinus concluded an unfavourable peace with the Persians. This disgrace, magnified by propaganda of Julia Maesa, Caracalla's aunt, inspired the Syrian legions to revolt. In the ensuing conflict Macrinus was defeated. He fled, only to be betrayed and executed.

Average well preserved denarius weight 3.39 grams. Average well preserved antoninianus weight 5.13 grams.


MACRINUS (Marcus Opelius Serverus), the sucessor of Caracalla, who was assassinated in Mesopotamia at his instigation.  He was born in Africa, of an obscure family (A.D. 164). At first an advocate, he came to Rome and was favourably received by Septiminus Severus; afterwards appointed Praetorian Prefect by Caracalla, but having ascertained the intention of that ferocious tyrant to destroy him, he took the above-mentioned effectual but treacherous step to prevent it, and was proclaimed Emperor A.D. 217. He was a prince well skilled in the laws, and just in their administration; a protector of literature, and a great disciplinarian, but somewhat cruel and voluptuous.  Although confirmed in the government by the Senate, he did not proceed to Rome, having immediately entered into a war with the Parthians, by whom he was defeated, and at length was constrained to make a peace with their King Artabanes on terms disgraceful to the Roman arms.  Having by his parsimony and severity indisposed the troops towards him, and being attacked by the generals of Elagabalus, he was defeated, persued, and slain in Bythinia, A.D. 218, in the 54th year of his age, not having completed the second year of his reign.


Obverse Legends

IMPCMOPELANTDIADVMENAVG
IMPCMOPELSEVMACRINVSAVG
IMPCAESMOPELSEVMACRINVSAVG
MACRIANVSNOBILCAES
MOPELANTDIADVMENIANCAES
MOPELANTONINVSDIADVMNIANVSCAES
MOPELDIADVMENIANVSCAES


|Dictionary of Roman Coins|


Please add updates or make corrections to the NumisWiki text version as appropriate.


MACRINUS (Marcus Opelius Serverus), the sucessor of Caracalla, who was assassinated in Mesopotamia at his instigation.  He was born in Africa, of an obscure family (A.D. 164). At first an advocate, he came to Rome and was favourably received by Septiminus Severus; afterwards appointed Praetorian Prefect by Caracalla, but having ascertained the intention of that ferocious tyrant to destroy him, he took the above-mentioned effectual but treacherous step to prevent it, and was proclaimed Emperor A.D. 217. He was a prince well skilled in the laws, and just in their administration; a protector of literature, and a great disciplinarian, but somewhat cruel and voluptuous.  Although confirmed in the government by the Senate, he did not proceed to Rome, having immediately entered into a war with the Parthians, by whom he was defeated, and at length was constrained to make a peace with their King Artabanes on terms disgraceful to the Roman arms.  Having by his parsimony and severity indisposed the troops towards him, and being attacked by the generals of Elagabalus, he was defeated, persued, and slain in Bythinia, A.D. 218, in the 54th year of his age, not having completed the second year of his reign.

The coins of Macrinus are of extreme rarity in gold; not scarce in silver; his sestertii, dupondii and asses are, and his brass medallions are very rare.  On these he is styled IMP. CAES. M. OPEL. SEV. MACRINVS AVG.

On the obverse of a sestertius, with the above names and titles for its legend, is the laureated head of the Emperor. - On the reverse, the epigraph is SECVRITAS TEMPORVM, and the type a woman holding the hasta in her left hand, and resting her right hand on a column.

The more frequently revolutions multiplied themselves under the Emperors, the more the throne tottered on its base; and the princes who were called to the government of the empire affected to invoke the security of which they would hardly have been otherwise than doubtful.

For the portrait of Macrinus, see Annona Aug.

 


View whole page from the |Dictionary Of Roman Coins|