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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Roman Coins| ▸ |The Severan Period| ▸ |Elagabalus||View Options:  |  |  | 

Elagabalus, 16 May 218 - 11 March 222 A.D.

Elagabalus came to power through the scheming of his grandmother Julia Maesa. Elagabalus repeatedly shocked the population with increasingly bizarre behavior including cross-dressing and marrying a vestal virgin. Eventually, his grandmother replaced him on the throne with Severus Alexander, and Elagabalus and his mother were murdered, dragged through the streets of Rome, and dumped into the Tiber.

Julia Soaemias, Augusta 16 May 218 - 11 March 222 A.D., Sebaste, Samaria, Syria Palaestina

|Judaea| |&| |Palestine|, |Julia| |Soaemias,| |Augusta| |16| |May| |218| |-| |11| |March| |222| |A.D.,| |Sebaste,| |Samaria,| |Syria| |Palaestina
||AE| |20|
Sebaste was in the heart of the mountains of Samaria, a few miles northwest of Shechem. The city was called Samaria when it was a capital of the northern Kingdom of Israel in the 9th and 8th centuries B.C. According to Josephus, King Herod the Great renamed Sebastia in honor of emperor Augustus.
RP110275. Bronze AE 20, RPC Online VI T8901 (8 spec.); Rosenberger III 36; Sofaer 37; Meshorer City Coins -; BMC Palestine -, VF, green patina, highlighting earthen deposits, weight 9.996 g, maximum diameter 20.5 mm, die axis 15o, Sebaste (Sebastia, Israel) mint, 16 May 218 - 11 Mar 222 A.D.; obverse SVAEMIAS AVGVSTA SEB, draped bust of Julia Soaemias right; reverse COL L SE SEBASTE, front view of temple with four columns, wreath in pediment, Capitoline Triad within: Jupiter in center seated facing on throne, long scepter in right hand, flanked by Juno on right, standing left, and Minerva on left, standing right, resting hand on shield; rare; $225.00 (227.25)


Elagabalus, 16 May 218 - 11 March 222 A.D., Neapolis, Samaria, Syria Palestina

|Roman| |Judea| |&| |Palestina|, |Elagabalus,| |16| |May| |218| |-| |11| |March| |222| |A.D.,| |Neapolis,| |Samaria,| |Syria| |Palestina||AE| |24|
Neapolis, Samaria, the biblical Shechemis, is now Nablus, Israel. It is the site of Joseph's Tomb and Jacob's well. Jesus spoke here to a Samaritan woman. Neapolis is home to about half the remaining worldwide Samaritan population of 600.
RP98112. Bronze AE 24, SNG ANS 1007 (same dies); cf. Rosenberger II 53; BMC Palestine p. 61, 103; Sofaer 109 - 110; Baramki AUB 36, nice VF, excellent portrait, attractive green patina with highlighting earthen deposits, some legend not fully struck, edge splits, weight 6.701 g, maximum diameter 24.1 mm, die axis 180o, Neapolis (Nablus, Israel) mint, 16 May 218 - 11 Mar 222 A.D.; obverse AVT K M AVP - ANTWNIN, laureate head right, slight drapery on left shoulder; reverse ΦΛ NE - CVP Π (Flavia Neapolis Syria Palestina), Tyche standing slightly left, head left, kalathos on head, rudder held by tiller in right hand, cornucopia in left hand; ex Menashe Landman Collection; rare; $180.00 (181.80)


Elagabalus, 16 May 218 - 11 March 222 A.D., Neapolis, Samaria, Syria Palestina

|Judaea| |&| |Palestine|, |Elagabalus,| |16| |May| |218| |-| |11| |March| |222| |A.D.,| |Neapolis,| |Samaria,| |Syria| |Palestina||AE| |25|
Neapolis, Samaria, the biblical Shechemis, is now Nablus, Israel. It is the site of Joseph's Tomb and Jacob's well. Jesus spoke here to a Samaritan woman. Neapolis is home to about half the remaining worldwide Samaritan population of 600.
JD111094. Bronze AE 25, cf. Sofaer 93; Rosenberger 37; BMC Palestine p. 60, 94; RPC Online VI T8928 (4 spec.), aF, earthen deposits, porosity, off center, weight 10.652 g, maximum diameter 24.9 mm, die axis 0o, Neapolis (Nablus, Israel) mint, 16 May 218 - 11 Mar 222 A.D.; obverse AYT K M AYP - ANTWNINOC, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right, seen from behind; reverse ΦΛ NEACΠOΛEΩ CYP ΠAΛ (Flavia Neapolis Syria Palestina), Mt. Gerizim comprised of two masses separated by a ravine, arched colonnade below, stairway up the left mass to temple (in perspective) on peak, road up to altar on right peak; ex Amphora Coins (David Hendin) with his signed photo authenticity receipt; $140.00 (141.40)


|Elagabalus|, |Elagabalus,| |16| |May| |218| |-| |11| |March| |222| |A.D.
||denarius|
Pax, regarded by the ancients as a goddess, was worshiped not only at Rome but also at Athens. Her altar could not be stained with blood. Claudius began the construction of a magnificent temple to her honor, which Vespasian finished, in the Via Sacra. The attributes of Peace are the hasta pura, the olive branch, the cornucopia, and often the caduceus. Sometimes she is represented setting fire to a pile of arms.
RS111002. Silver denarius, RIC IV.2 21, RSC III 143, BMCRE V 97, Hunter III 23, SRCV II 7530, gVF, flow lines, edge crack, scratch, weight 2.793 g, maximum diameter 19.5 mm, die axis 0o, Rome mint, 218 A.D.; obverse IMP ANTONINVS AVG, laureate and draped bust right, seen from behind; reverse P M TR P II COS II P P, Pax advancing left, raising olive branch in right hand, long scepter transverse in her left hand; ex Solidus Numismatik auction 106 (11 Oct 2022), lot 1605; $125.00 (126.25)


Elagabalus, 16 May 218 - 11 March 222 A.D., Antioch, Seleucis and Pieria, Syria

|Antioch|, |Elagabalus,| |16| |May| |218| |-| |11| |March| |222| |A.D.,| |Antioch,| |Seleucis| |and| |Pieria,| |Syria||tetradrachm|
From the Ray Nouri Collection.

This type is traditionally assigned to Antioch but McAlee identifies Laodicea as the most likely mint. McAlee notes, "After Septimius stripped Antioch of its privileges and conferred them on Laodicea-ad-Mare, some coins of Laodicea bear the legend 'Metropolis of the Four Provinces,' and others have a representation of four Tyches. The letters ∆ - E also regularly appear on the coins of Laodicea from the time of Elagabalus to that of Trebonianus Gallus." We attribute the type to Antioch, but clearly that is not certain.
RY94937. Billon tetradrachm, Bellinger Syria 42, SNG Cop 236, McAlee 758, Prieur 249 var. (both ties behind neck), Dura Coins -, F, toned, tight flan cutting off part of legends, reverse legend weak, weight 12.920 g, maximum diameter 25.2 mm, die axis 180o, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, 219 A.D.; obverse AVT K M A ANTWNEINOC CEB, laureate bust right, drapery on left shoulder, one wreath tie on neck; reverse ∆HMAPX EΞOYCIAC YΠ B (holder of Tribunitian power, consul for the second time), eagle standing facing, wings spread, head left, wreath in beak, ∆ - E (∆ EΠAPCEIΩN - of the four eparchies) flanking eagle's head, star between legs; from the Ray Nouri Collection; $70.00 (70.70)


Elagabalus, 16 May 218 - 11 March 222 A.D., Antioch, Seleucis and Pieria, Syria

|Roman| |Syria|, |Elagabalus,| |16| |May| |218| |-| |11| |March| |222| |A.D.,| |Antioch,| |Seleucis| |and| |Pieria,| |Syria||tetradrachm|
Antioch on the Orontes was an ancient Greco-Roman city on the eastern side of the Orontes River. Its ruins lie near the modern city of Antakya, Turkey, and lends the modern city its name. Antioch was founded near the end of the 4th century B.C. by Seleucus I Nicator, one of Alexander the Great's generals. The city's geographical, military, and economic location benefited its occupants, particularly such features as the spice trade, the Silk Road, and the Persian Royal Road. It eventually rivaled Alexandria as the chief city of the Near East. It was also the main center of Hellenistic Judaism at the end of the Second Temple period. Most of the urban development of Antioch was done during the Roman Empire, when the city was one of the most important in the eastern Mediterranean area of Rome's dominions. Antioch was called "the cradle of Christianity" as a result of its longevity and the pivotal role that it played in the emergence of both Hellenistic Judaism and early Christianity. The New Testament asserts that the name "Christian" first emerged in Antioch. The city was a metropolis of half a million people during Augustan times, but it declined to relative insignificance during the Middle Ages because of warfare, repeated earthquakes, and a change in trade routes, which no longer passed through Antioch from the far east following the Mongol conquests.
RP98684. Billon tetradrachm, Prieur 249 (also both ties behind neck); McAlee 758/1; SNG Cop VII 237; Bellinger Syrian 42; BMC Galatia p. 202, 419, gF, dark toning, rough surface areas, weight 12.977 g, maximum diameter 24.3 mm, die axis 180o, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, 219 A.D.; obverse AVT K M A - ANTWNEINOC - CEB, laureate bust right, drapery on left shoulder front and back; reverse ∆HMAPX EΞ YΠATOC TO B (holder of Tribunitian power, consul for the second time), eagle standing facing on line, wings spread, head left, wreath in beak, ∆-E flanking head, star between legs; $60.00 (60.60)


Elagabalus, 16 May 218 - 11 March 222 A.D., Nicaea, Bithynia

|Bithynia|, |Elagabalus,| |16| |May| |218| |-| |11| |March| |222| |A.D.,| |Nicaea,| |Bithynia||AE| |23|
Nicaea remained an important town throughout the imperial period. Although only 70 km (43 miles) from Constantinople, Nicaea did not lose its importance when Constantinople became the capital of the Eastern Empire. The city suffered from earthquakes in 358, 362 and 368; after the last of which, it was restored by Valens. During the Middle Ages, it was a long time bulwark of the Byzantine emperors against the Turks.
RP99995. Bronze AE 23, RPC Online VI T3128; SNG Leypold 170; McClean 7489 (Caracalla); SNGvA 513; Rec Gen p. 471, 571; BMC Pontus p. 167, 93, Choice VF, green patina, some encrustation, small spots of light corrosion, closed crack, weight 4.700 g, maximum diameter 23.4 mm, die axis 0o, Nicaea (Iznik, Turkey) mint, 16 May 218 - 11 Mar 222 A.D.; obverse M AVP ANTΩNINOC AVΓ, laureate head to right; reverse three legionary standards topped with wreaths, NI-KA-IE-ΩN (ΩN ligate) above exergue line divided by the standards; $60.00 (60.60)


Elagabalus, 16 May 218 - 11 March 222 A.D., Tyre, Phoenicia

|Phoenicia|, |Elagabalus,| |16| |May| |218| |-| |11| |March| |222| |A.D.,| |Tyre,| |Phoenicia||AE| |31|NEW
Astarte, called "Ashtroth" in Scripture, was the favorite goddess of the Sidonians, Tyrians, Philistines, and Syro-Phoenicians generally. She was associated with the Greek Aphrodite and Roman Venus Genetrix, being believed by the ancients to be the goddess of generation, as well as of beauty. Astarte was chiefly worshiped and appears on the coins of Berytus, Bostra, Sidon, and Tyre. Her image is of a young woman, wearing a tall headdress; and clothed in a tunic, high in the neck- sometimes, not reaching lower than the knees, or sometimes with a longer dress, but with one knee exposed, and one foot planted on a galley's prow.Astarte
RP110730. Bronze AE 31, cf. RPC Online VI T8607; BMC Phoenicia 396 ff.; RPC VI 8607 ff.; SNG Cop 365, aF, near black patina, red earthen highlighting, weight 15.003 g, maximum diameter 31.0 mm, die axis 0o, Tyre (Lebanon) mint, obverse IMP CAES M AV ANTONINVS AVG, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right, seen from behind; reverse TYR-I-O-RVM, Tyche-Astarte standing facing, right hand on trophy to left, transverse scepter in her left hand, Nike offering wreath on short column to right; small palm tree between Astarte and trophy, murex shell between Astarte and column; $50.00 (50.50)


Elagabalus, 16 May 218 - 11 March 222 A.D., Petra, Arabia

|Roman| |Arabia|, |Elagabalus,| |16| |May| |218| |-| |11| |March| |222| |A.D.,| |Petra,| |Arabia||AE| |18|NEW
Petra, the capital of the ancient Nabatean Kingdom, is a famous archaeological site in Jordan's southwestern desert. UNESCO describes Petra as "one of the most precious cultural properties of man's cultural heritage." The BBC selected Petra as one of "the 40 places you have to see before you die." Accessed via a narrow canyon called Al Siq, it contains tombs and temples carved into pink sandstone cliffs, earning its nickname, the "Rose City." Perhaps its most famous structure is 45m-high Al Khazneh, a temple with an ornate, Greek-style facade, and known as The Treasury. After the last Nabataean king, Rabbel II, died in 106 A.D., Trajan incorporated Nabataea into the Roman province Arabia Petraea. One of the latest known Nabataean language inscriptions, from 191 A.D., records "...This in the year 85 of the Eparchy [Roman Rule], in which Arabs destroyed the land." It seems likely that raiding Arab tribes extinguished what remained of a weakened Nabataean culture. In 747 A.D. what was left of the Nabataean cities was destroyed in a major earthquake.Treasury
RP110778. Bronze AE 18, cf. Sofaer 53, Spijkerman 56, Rosenberger IV 35, SNG ANS 1373 ff., SNG Cop 150, SNG Righetti 2548, BMC Arabia -, VF, dark green patina, highlighting earthen deposits, tight flan, scrapes, minor edge flaws, weight 2.827 g, maximum diameter 17.6 mm, die axis 180o, Petra (Jordan) mint, 16 May 218 - 11 Mar 222 A.D.; obverse IMP C M AVP ANTONIN (or similar), laureate and draped bust right, seen from behind; reverse emperor ceremonially plowing right with a cow and an ox, marking the pomerium (sacred boundary) to found the new colony, togate, right hand raised, PETΛA above, COLON in exergue; $50.00 (50.50)


Elagabalus, 16 May 218 - 11 March 222 A.D., Neapolis, Samaria, Syria Palestina

|Judaea| |&| |Palestine|, |Elagabalus,| |16| |May| |218| |-| |11| |March| |222| |A.D.,| |Neapolis,| |Samaria,| |Syria| |Palestina||AE| |19|
Neapolis, Samaria, the biblical Shechemis, is now Nablus, Israel. It is the site of Joseph's Tomb and Jacob's well. Jesus spoke here to a Samaritan woman. Neapolis is home to about half the remaining worldwide Samaritan population of 600.
JD111144. Bronze AE 19, cf. Sofaer 96; RPC Online VI T8933 (2 spec.), aF, tight flan, some corrosion, weight 7.302 g, maximum diameter 18.5 mm, die axis 0o, Neapolis (Nablus, Israel) mint, 16 May 218 - 11 Mar 222 A.D.; obverse AYT K M AYP - ANTWNINOC (or similar), laureate and cuirassed bust right, seen from in front; reverse ΦΛ NEAC Π CYP ΠAΛ (or similar, ending in exergue, Flavia Neapolis Syria Palestina), Mt. Gerizim comprised of two masses separated by a ravine, arched colonnade below, stairway up the left mass to temple (in perspective) on peak, road up to altar on right peak; $40.00 (40.40)







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OBVERSE| LEGENDS|

ANTONINVSFELPIVSAVG
ANTONINVSPFELAVG ANTONINVSPIVSAVG
ANTONINVSPIVSFEL
ANTONINVSPIVSFELAVG (ALSO USED BY CARACALLA)
IMPANTONINVSAVG
IMPANTONINVSPIVSAVG
IMPANTONINVSPIVSFELIX
IMPANTONINVSPIVSFELIXAVG
IMPCAESANTONINVSAVG
IMPCAESMAVRANTONINVSAVG
IMPCAESMAVRANTONINVSPFAVG
IMPCAESMAVRANTONINVSPIVSAVG
IMPCAESMAVRSEANTONINVSAVG
IMPCMAVRANTONINVSPFAVG
IMP M AVR ANTONIN PIVS AVG


REFERENCES|

Banti, A. & L. Simonetti. Corpus Nummorum Romanorum. (Florence, 1972-1979).
Calic, E. The Roman Avrei, Vol. I: From the Republic to Pertinax, 196 BC - 193 AD. (Barcelona, 2003).
Cohen, H. Description historique des monnaies frappes sous l'Empire Romain, Vol. 4, Septimius Severus to Maximinus Thrax. (Paris, 1884).
Mattingly, H., E. Sydenham & C. Sutherland. The Roman Imperial Coinage, Vol. IV: From Pertinax to Uranius Antoninus. (London, 1986).
Mattingly, H. & R. Carson. Coins of the Roman Empire in the British Museum, Vol. 5: Pertinax to Elagabalus. (London, 1950).
Online Coins of the Roman Empire (OCRE) http://numismatics.org/ocre/
Robinson, A. Roman Imperial Coins in the Hunter Coin Cabinet, University of Glasgow, Vol. III, Pertinax to Aemilian. (Oxford, 1977).
Seaby, H. & Sear, D. Roman Silver Coins, Vol. III, Pertinax to Balbinus and Pupienus. (London, 1982).
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).
Vagi, D. Coinage and History of the Roman Empire. (Sidney, 1999).

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