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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Themes & Provenance ▸ Types ▸ Happy DaysView Options:  |  |  | 

FELicium TEMPorum REPARATIO

The reverse legend FEL TEMP REPARATIO was used on coins from the time of Constans and Constantius II to that of Gratian (337 to 375). Although the intended reading of this legend is not completely certain, it most likely reads, FELicium TEMPorum REPARATIO, meaning "re-establishment of the happy times." We prefer to loosely translate it to the more current and lyrical expression, "Happy Days are Here Again!" From the coins below, it seems the Romans had a very different concept of what made for happy times.


Romano-British Empire, Carausius, Mid 286 - Spring or Early Summer 293 A.D.

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Felicitas was the goddess or personification of happiness, good fortune, and success. She played an important role in Rome's state religion during the empire and was frequently portrayed on coins. She became a prominent symbol of the wealth and prosperity of the Roman Empire.
RA73473. Billon antoninianus, RIC V-2 1014 (S), Linchmere 1136 var. (P F AVG), Hunter IV 79 var. (P F AVG, TEMPO), Webb Carausius 1136 var. (same), King Unmarked -, Bicester -, F, green patina, broad flan, weight 4.016 g, maximum diameter 24.0 mm, die axis 270o, unmarked mint mint, c. mid 286 - 287; obverse IMP CARAVSIVS P AVG, radiate and draped bust right, early reign 'moustache' portrait; reverse TEMP FELIC (happy time), Felicitas standing slightly left, head left, grounded long caduceus vertical in right hand, cornucopia in left hand, fields blank; from the Charles Peters Carausius Collection; scarce; $200.00 (Ä170.00)


Romano-British Empire, Carausius, Mid 286 - Spring or Early Summer 293 A.D.

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Colchester (Camulodunum) and its wall were rebuilt by the Romans after Queen Boudica led a rebellion in A.D. 60 and destroyed the town. Balkerne Gate in Colchester is the largest Roman arch in Britain. Balkerne Gate Colchester

RA73281. Billon antoninianus, RIC V-2 420 (S), Webb Carausius 466, Cohen VII 347, Hunter IV 150, Askew 281, SRCV IV 13731, F/aF, bumps, encrustations, corrosion, weight 2.338 g, maximum diameter 21.5 mm, die axis 225o, Camulodunum (Colchester, England) mint, c. mid 292 - mid 293; obverse IMP C CARAVSIVS AVG, radiate and draped bust right; reverse TEMPORVM FELI (happy times), Felicitas standing left, long caduceus in right hand, cornucopia in left hand, S - P across fields, C in exergue; from the Charles Peters Carausius Collection; scarce; $180.00 (Ä153.00)


Constantius II, 22 May 337 - 3 November 361 A.D.

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The cross was rarely used in early Christian iconography, perhaps because it symbolized a purposely painful and gruesome method of public execution that most early Christians would have personally witnessed. In 315, Constantine abolished crucifixion as punishment in the Roman Empire. The Ichthys, or fish symbol, was used by early Christians. Constantine adopted the Chi-Rho Christ monogram (Christogram) as his banner (labarum). The use of a cross as the most prevalent symbol of Christianity probably gained momentum after Saint Helena, mother of Constantine the Great, traveled to the Holy Land, c. 326 - 328, and recovered the True Cross.
RL89481. Billon light maiorina, RIC VIII Cyzicus 75, LRBC II 2478, Voetter 34, SRCV V 18233, Cohen VII 41, Hunter V -, Choice aEF, excellent centering, dark patina, scratches, earthen deposits, weight 3.168 g, maximum diameter 21.8 mm, die axis 0o, 4th officina, Cyzicus (Kapu Dagh, Turkey) mint, 348 - 351 A.D.; obverse D N CONSTANTIVS P F AVG, pearl-diademed, draped, and cuirassed bust left, holding globe in right hand; reverse FEL TEMP REPARATIO (happy times restored), emperor standing left, labarum in right hand, resting left on grounded shield behind, two kneeling bound captives at feet before him, *SMK∆ exergue; ex Numismatik Naumann auction 73, part of lot 970; $95.00 (Ä80.75)


Fel. Temp. Reparatio

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An article originally published in Numismatic Chronicle,1933, pp. 182-201, and plates xvii and xviii. Mattingly discusses his ideas about the various coins of the FEL TEMP REPARATIO series of the late 340s and early 350s.
BL43189. "Fel. Temp. Reparatio" by Harold Mattingly, Numismatic Chronicle reprint series, Attic Books 1977 reprint, paperback booklet, 5.5" x 8.5", 23 pages with 2 plates; $4.00 (Ä3.40)







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Catalog current as of Thursday, April 18, 2019.
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FEL TEMP REPARATION