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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Roman Coins ▸ The Adoptive Emperors ▸ Marcus AureliusView Options:  |  |  | 

Marcus Aurelius, 7 March 161 - 17 March 180 A.D.

Marcus Aurelius was recognized by Hadrian as a fine and capable youth and betrothed to the daughter of Aelius. Antoninus Pius adopted him and in 145 A.D. he married Antoninus' daughter, Faustina II. In 161 A.D., he succeeded Antoninus as Augustus, immediately proclaiming Lucius Verus his co-emperor. Although known for his adherence to the philosophy of Stoicism and as a naturally peaceful man, Marcus' reign was disturbed by war with Parthia, plague and then a long, hard war along the Danube frontier. He died on March 17th, 180 A.D. and was deified by the senate soon after.


Marcus Aurelius, 7 March 161 - 17 March 180 A.D., Carrhae, Mesopotamia

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Carrhae is the Haran of the Bible. Crassus was defeated and killed by the Parthians near Carrhae in 53 B.C. Emperor Galerius was defeated on the same site in 296 A.D.
RP89001. Bronze AE 21, SNG Righetti 2556 (same dies); RPC Online IV 6482 (5 specimens); BMC Mesopotamia p. 82, 1 & pl. XII, 3; SNG Cop -; SNGvA -, F, thick tight flan, porous, light corrosion, small edge crack, weight 10.965 g, maximum diameter 21.4 mm, die axis 0o, Carrhae (Altinbasak, Turkey) mint, 7 Mar 161 - 17 Mar 180 A.D.; obverse AYTOKP KAIC MAP AYPHΛI OYHROC, laureate head right; reverse KARHNWN ΦIΛOPWME, crescent horns upward, resting on a globe, fillets hanging from each side, star with six horns between the horns; ex Ancient Numismatic Enterprise; rare; $125.00 (€106.25)
 


Marcus Aurelius and Lucius Verus, 7 March 161 - February 169 A.D., Laodicea ad Mare, Seleucia & Pieria, Syria

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Laodicea ad Mar was founded by Seleukos Nikator. The determined after an eagle snatched a piece of flesh from an altar where Seleukos was sacrificing. The exact site was indicated when he slew a boar following the eagle's flight.
RP85966. Bronze AE 25, RPC online IV 9261 (10 spec.), SNG Hunterian II 3206, SNG Fitzwilliam 5956, SNG Righetti 2108, Lindgren 2084, SNG Cop -, BMC Galatia -, aF, brown patina, tight flan, marks and scratches, porous, weight 10.679 g, maximum diameter 24.5 mm, die axis 0o, Laodicea ad Mare (Latakia, Syria) mint, 161 - 169 A.D.; obverse AYTOKPATWP KAICAP ANTWNINOC, laureate head of Marcus Aurelius right, IOY low in right field; reverse AYOKPATΩP KAICAP OYHPOC, laureate of head of Lucius Verus right, ΛA low in right field; ex Alex G. Malloy; scarce; $90.00 (€76.50)
 


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For coins of this period, it is difficult to distinguish the dupondius from the ass. When unpatinated the color of the dupondius tends to be yellow or yellow brown and the as tends to be reddish but exceptions are frequent. Zinc is now present in the as and reduced in quantity in both the sestertius and dupondius. There is no reliable significant difference in the composition of the three denominations.
RB88863. Bronze dupondius (or as), RIC III AP1232 (S), Cohen III 393, BMCRE IV MA1407, Hunter II 39 var. (slight drapery), SRCV II 4831, F, brown patina, scratch, porosity, reverse off center, weight 11.393 g, maximum diameter 28.0 mm, die axis 0o, Rome mint, 140 - 144 A.D.; obverse AVRELIVS CAESAR AVG PII F COS, bare head right; reverse IVVENTAS (youth), Juventas standing slightly left, head left, draped, dropping incense with left hand onto candelabrum on left, patera downward in right hand, S - C (senatus consulto) across field; scarce; $80.00 (€68.00)
 


Marcus Aurelius and Lucius Verus, 7 March 161 - February 169 A.D., Anazarbus, Cilicia

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Anazarbus was founded by Assyrians. Under the early Roman Empire, it was known as Caesarea and was the Metropolis (capital) of Late Roman province Cilicia Secunda. It was the home of the poet Oppian. Rebuilt by the Byzantine emperor Justin I after an earthquake in 525, it became Justinopolis. Despite the name changes, the old native name persisted. When Thoros I, king of Lesser Armenia, made it his capital early in the 12th century, it was known as Anazarva.

ETBΠP is the date, year 182 of Caesarea. The era began in 19 B.C. when the city was visited by Augustus, refounded and renamed Caesarea, dating this coin to 163 - 164 A.D.
RP88143. Bronze trihemiassaria, Ziegler 181; SNG Levante 1392; SNG Cop 42; Lindgren-Kovacs 1427; BMC Lycaonia p. 33, 13; SNG BnF 2031, aF, green patina with highlighting earthen deposits, weight 9.502 g, maximum diameter 23.8 mm, die axis 0o, Anazarbus (Anavarza, Turkey) mint, 163 - 164 A.D.; obverse CEBAC ANTΩNEINOY KAI OYHP OMONOIA, Aurelius, scroll in left, and Verus, both togate, clasping right hands; reverse KAI TΩN ΠPOC TΩ ANAZAPB, decastyle temple, star in pediment, ET BΠP (year 182 Era of Caesarea) in exergue; ex Moneta Numismatic Services; scarce; $55.00 (€46.75)
 







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OBVERSE LEGENDS

ANTONINVSAVG
ANTONINVSAVGARMENIACVS
AVRELIVSCAESANTONAVGPIIF
AVRELIVSCAESARANTONINIAVGPIIFIL
AVRELIVSCAESARAVGPIIF
AVRELIVSCAESARAVGPIIFCOS
AVRELIVSCAESARAVGPIIFIL
AVRELIVSCAESARAVGPIIFCOS
AVRELIVSCAESAVGPIIF
AVRELIVSCAESAVGPIIFCOS
AVRELIVSCAESAVGPIIFCOSDES
DIVOMARCO
DIVOMARCOANTONINO
DIVVSMANTONINVSPIVS
IMPCAESMAVRELANTONINVSAVG
IMPCAESMAVRELANTONINVSAVGPM
IMPMANTONINVSAVG
IMPMANTONINVSAVGTRPXXV
IMPMAVRELANTONINVSAVG
MANTONINVSAVG
MANTONINVSAVGARMENIACVS
MANTONINVSAVGARMENPM
MANTONINVSAVGARMPARTHMAX
MANTONINVSAVGGERMSARM
MANTONINVSAVGGERMSARMATICVS
MANTONINVSAVGGERMSARMMAX
MANTONINVSAVGGERMSARMTRPXXXI
MANTONINVSAVGGERMSARMTRPXXXPP
MANTONINVSAVGGERMTRPXXIX
MANTONINVSAVGIMPII
MANTONINVSAVGTRPXX
MANTONINVSAVGTRPXXIII
MANTONINVSAVGTRPXXIIII
MANTONINVSAVGTRPXXV
MANTONINVSAVGTRPXXVI
MANTONINVSAVGTRPXXVII
MANTONINVSAVGTRPXXVIII
MANTONINVSAVGTRPXXIX
MAVRELANTONINVSAVG
MAVRELANTONINVSAVGARMENIACVSPM
MAVRELANTONINVSAVGARMPARTHMAX
MAVRELANTONINVSAVGTRPXXXIII
MAVRELIVSCAESARANTONINIAVGPIIF
MAVRELIVSCAESARAVGPIIF


REFERENCES

Banti, A. & L. Simonetti. Corpus Nummorum Romanorum. (Florence, 1972-1979).
Calicó, E. The Roman Avrei, Vol. I: From the Republic to Pertinax, 196 BC - 193 AD. (Barcelona, 2003).
Cayón, J. Los Sestercios del Imperio Romano, Vol. III: De Marco Aurelio a Caracalla (Del 161 d.C. al 217 d.C.). (Madrid, 1984).
Cohen, H. Description historique des monnaies frappées sous l'Empire Romain, Vol. 3: Marcus Aurelius to Clodius Albinus. (Paris, 1883).
Mattingly, H. & E. Sydenham. The Roman Imperial Coinage, Vol. III: Antoninus Pius to Commodus. (London, 1930).
Mattingly, H. & R. Carson. Coins of the Roman Empire in the British Museum, Vol. 4: Antoninus Pius to Commodus. (London, 1940).
Robinson, A. Roman Imperial Coins in the Hunter Coin Cabinet. II. Trajan to Commodus (London, 1971).
Szaivert, W. Die Münzprägung der Kaiser Marcus Aurelius, Lucius Verus un Commodus (161-192). (Wien, 1984).
Seaby, H. & R. Loosley. Roman Silver Coins, Vol. II: Tiberius to Commodus. (London, 1979).
Sear, D. Roman Coins and Their Values, Vol. II: The Accession of Nerva to the Overthrow of the Severan Dynasty AD 96 - AD 235. (London, 2002).
Strack, P. Untersuchungen zur römischen Reichsprägung des zweiten Jahrhunderts, Teil III: Die Reichsprägung zur Zeit Antoninus Pius. (Stuttgart, 1937).
Toynbee, J. Roman medallions. ANSNS 5. (New York, 1944).
Vagi, D. Coinage and History of the Roman Empire. (Sidney, 1999).

Catalog current as of Saturday, April 20, 2019.
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Roman Coins of Marcus Aurelius