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Marcian, 24 August 450 - 31 January 457 A.D.
At the beginning of Marcian's reign, the Eastern Roman treasury was almost bankrupt, due to the huge tributes paid to Attila by Theodosius. Marcian reversed this near bankruptcy not by levying new taxes, but rather by cutting expenditures. Upon his accession, he declared a remission of all debts owed to the state. Marcian attempted to improve the efficiency of the state in multiple ways, such as mandating that the praetorship must be given to senators residing in Constantinople, attempted to curb the practice of selling administrative offices, and decreed that consuls would be responsible for the maintenance of Constantinople's aqueducts. He repealed the Follis, a tax on senators' property which amounted to seven pounds of gold per year. Marcian removed the financial responsibilities of the consuls and praetors, who had since the time of the Roman Republic been responsible for funding the public sports games or giving wealth to the citizens of Constantinople, respectively; additionally, he made it such that only the Vir illustris could hold either office. By the time of his death, Marcian's shrewd cutting of expenditures and avoidance of large-scale wars left the Eastern Roman treasury with a surplus of 100,000 pounds (45,000 kg) of gold.
RL87909. Bronze half centenionalis, RIC X Marcian 561 (R), LRBC II 2609, SRCV V 21398, Hahn MIB 33, DOCLR -, Hunter V -, VF, tight flan, obverse off center, edge crack, small pit on obverse, Cyzicus (Kapu Dagh, Turkey) mint, weight 1.354g, maximum diameter 10.8mm, die axis 0o
, 453 - 457 A.D.; obverse D N MARCINIANVS P F AVG, pearl-diademed, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse Marcian's monogram (RIC monogram 1)
, in wreath, CVZ in exergue; ex Beast Coins; rare
Catalog current as of Tuesday, August 20, 2019.
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