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Annia Faustina




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Faustina (Annia), daughter of Claudius Severus and Vibia Aurelia Sabina (daughter of Marcus Aurelius and of the younger Faustina), was the third wife of Elagabalus, who as a preliminary to his marriage with her, caused her husband to be put to death, and then the wretch forbade her to weep for him. These new nuptials took place in the year of Rome 974 (A.D. 221). Like the preceding ones, this worse than mockery of a marital union was dissolved at the expiration of a very short space of time. She was repudiated to give place to others.

"Annia Faustina (remarks M. Lenormant), did not follow the custom, adopted by all the women who had the title of Augusta at that period, of adding the name Julia to their own. Her birth was so illustrious, that she had no need to borrow a foreign éclat. The name of Annia Faustina is known only from coins. Dion Cassius speaks only of a wife [of Elagabalus who descended from Marcus Aurelius. In fact the names of Annia and of Faustina belong to the family of that emperor."

Her coins, in silver and first brass, are few in number, and all of the highest rarity; on these she is styled ANNIA FAVSTINA AV. or AVGVSTA.

The reverses are as follow:-

Silver.-

1. CONCORDIA. Elagabalus and Annia Faustina standing, give each the right hand to the other. In the field is a star.

2. PIETAS AVG. A woman stands before an altar. (Mionnet values these two coins at 1000 francs each.)

Large Brass.- CONCORDIA. Same subject as NO.

1.- The Obverse bears the legend ANNIA FAVSTINA AVGVSTA, and the bust of the empress for its type. (Priced by Mionnet at 600 fr.)- From a finely preserved specimen of this, one of the rarest of Roman coins, the foregoing cut has been executed. For a fine engraving of the same reverse, as well as of the obverse, see Mionnet, Rarete des Med. Rom. i. p, 354.

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