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FELICITAS AVG

Latin abbreviation: Felicitas Augusti - to the good fortune of the Emperor.


DICTIONARY OF ROMAN COINS






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FELICITAS AVG - The busts of Victory and Peace, side by side. Obv. IMP C POSTVMVS P F AVG, the busts of Postumus and Hercules, side by side, both laureated. Gold medallion of Postumus.


Jean Tristan, in giving a fairly accurate delineation of this very beautiful medallion, describes it as exhibiting "les Effigies du Postume, pere, et fils," in other words, the heads of Postumus and Postumous junior! That any writer like himself, who, with a proneness indeed to indulge in the fanciful, the conjectural, and the discursive, displays nevertheless a profound knowledge of mythology and of ancient history, combined with unequivocal proofs of capability to form just conclusions from numismatic monuments: that such a writer should have fallen into an error of this sort, is not a little extraordinary. He has done so, however, not only in the present instance, but also in two others (See Commentaries, etc, T iii 138, plates No. 1, and 147, pl Bo, 10). what adds to the apparent strangeness of the hallucination is, that his animadversions on events connected with the reign of Postumus, bear immediate reference to many of that emperor's coins, on which the whole-length figure of Hercules is represented, either isolatedly, or in association with his own. These the worthy "Escuyer Sieur de S. Amant" has illustrated with well-designed engravings by the burin of Picart; and from these it is evident that great prince and conqueror that he was, emperor and Augustus in all but senatorial recognition, Postumous, like other successful soldiers of fortune and of obscure birth, inflated with pride of his victories, was in the vain-glorious habit of comparing himself with Hercules. And perhaps his features were not without some slight analogy to those which the sculptor of classic antiquity bestows upon that hero. But, to judge from the examples of his monetal portraitures, the likeness of Postumus, on the above medallion, would appear to be an ideal one, flatteringly assimilated with the Grecian lineaments of the face to which it is joined, in the same way as it is on other medallions with the helmed bust of Mars. Tristan has himself given an engraving of POSTVMVS AVGVTVS, with radiated head, on the obverse, and with Jupiter Stator for legends and type of reverse (see Commentaries, iii 158), an example which may be accepted as vera effigies: a true portrait of the celebrated usurper of the western provinces, and which abundance are to be found in every good collection; but except in bushiness of beard and roughness of aspect, it is scarcely to be called a resemblance of the visage assigned to the demigod of Fable. And yet the face is a good face too, in its Gaulish fashion, indicating as it does the indomitable courage, the resolute bearing, the politic sagacity, of a man equally distinguished both in the arts of civil government and by his talents for warlike commandership.

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