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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Roman Coins| ▸ |Crisis & Decline| ▸ |Valerian I||View Options:  |  |  | 

Valerian I, October 253 - c. June 260 A.D.

Valerian I was proclaimed emperor after the death of Trajan Decius. He successfully repulsed many barbarian incursions but the standard of living declined and would never recover. In 260 A.D., after four years of war during which Roman forces suffered great losses in battle and to a plague, he arranged for peace talks. He set off with a small group to discuss terms with the Sasanian emperor Sapor and was never seen again. The date of his death is unknown, but in Rome, it was rumored that he had been murdered and that Sapor was using his stuffed body as a footstool.

Valerian I, October 253 - c. June 260 A.D., Tyre, Phoenicia

|Phoenicia|, |Valerian| |I,| |October| |253| |-| |c.| |June| |260| |A.D.,| |Tyre,| |Phoenicia||dichalkon|
Romans refounded Tyre as a colony in 64 B.C., when Pompey annexed Phoenicia to the Roman Empire. Tyre flourished under the Rome and remained a Roman port city, even under the Byzantine Empire, until the 7th century when it was taken by Muslim conquest.
RP96396. Bronze dichalkon, BMC Phoenicia p. 289, 465 var. (murex shell on right); Rouvier -; Baramki AUB -; SNG Hunt -; SNG Cop -, F, rough dark green patina, earthen deposits, weight 16.345 g, maximum diameter 27.5 mm, die axis 0o, Tyre (Lebanon) mint, Oct 253 - Jun 260 A.D.; obverse IMP C P LIC VALERIANVS AVG, laureate bust right; reverse COL TVRO METR, river-god (Adonis?) standing facing, head left, nude to waist, himation around hips and legs, right hand dropping incense on flaming altar at her feet on left, long grounded reed vertical in left hand, murex shell on left; from the J. Berlin Caesarea Collection, 1971 Caesarea Maritima surface find; Coin Archives records only one specimen of the type at auction in the last two decades; extremely rare; $320.00 SALE PRICE $288.00


|Valerian| |I|, |Valerian| |I,| |October| |253| |-| |c.| |June| |260| |A.D.||sestertius|
Liberalitas coin types attest to occasions when the emperor has displayed his generosity towards the people by a distribution to them, in money, provisions, or both. The first mention of Liberalitas was on coins of Hadrian. It was a type frequently repeated by the succeeding emperors. Indeed these instances of imperial generosity are more carefully recorded on coins than they are by history. This coin advertises that Elagabalus has made his third distribution to the people. Liberality is personified by the image of a woman, holding in one hand a counting board, or square tablet with a handle on which are cut a certain number of holes. These boards were used to quickly count the proper number of coins or other items for distribution to each person. In the other hand she holds a cornucopia.
RB110380. Orichalcum sestertius, Gbl MIR 66h, RIC V-1 J165 (S), Hunter IV J45; SRCV III 10468, Cohen V 110, VF/F, nice green patina, nice portrait, tight round flan, most of legends off flan, weight 17.182 g, maximum diameter 25.7 mm, die axis 0o, Rome mint, 2nd issue, 255 - 256 A.D.; obverse IMP C P LIC VALERIANVS P F AVG, laureate, cuirassed and slightly draped, bust right; reverse LIBERALITAS AVGG, Liberalitas standing slightly left, wearing long chiton, counting board in right hand, cornucopiae in left hand, S - C (senatus consulto) flanking across field below center; this is the first specimen of this type handled by FORVM; ex Degani Venizia (Plaza San Marco, Venice, Italy); scarce; $240.00 SALE PRICE $192.00


Valerian I, October 253 - c. June 260 A.D., Samos, Islands of Ionia

|Other| |Ionia|, |Valerian| |I,| |October| |253| |-| |c.| |June| |260| |A.D.,| |Samos,| |Islands| |of| |Ionia||AE| |27|
Samos is the birthplace of Pythagoras. A famous attraction on the island is the tunnel-aqueduct dug through a mountain to bring water to the city from a secret spring. An engineering marvel over 1000m long, it was dug from both ends by two teams working simultaneously and used for a very long period. Herodotus' wrote of it, which led to its discovery in the 19th century.
RP110323. Bronze AE 27, SNG Cop 1796, BMC Ionia p. 393, 370; SNGvA 2329 var. (AVΓ K... on obv.), VF, well centered, green patina, light earthen deposits, weight 9.261 g, maximum diameter 27.4 mm, die axis 180o, Samos mint, Oct 253 - c. Jun 260 A.D.; obverse AVP T K ΠOΛIONSΛEPIANOC AVP, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse CA-MI-ΩN (last two letters in exergue), facing standing cult statue of Samian Hera within temple with four columns and central arch; ex Naville Numismatics auction 58 (14 Jun 2020), lot 231; ex NAC auction 100 (29 May 2017), lot 1240; rare; $180.00 SALE PRICE $162.00


Valerian I, October 253 - c. June 260 A.D., Isinda, Pisidia

|Pisidia|, |Valerian| |I,| |October| |253| |-| |c.| |June| |260| |A.D.,| |Isinda,| |Pisidia||assarion|
Isinda stood in a strategic position at the western end of the pass leading from Pamphylia by Termessus to Pisidia. The coinage of Isinda indicates the city considered itself an Ionian colony.
RP97734. Bronze assarion, SNG BnF 1622; SNG Pfalz 234; BMC Lycia p. 227, 21; SNG Hunterian -; SNGvA -; SNG Cop -, aVF, dark brown patina, weight 8.444 g, maximum diameter 24.3 mm, die axis 180o, Isinda (Kisla, Turkey) mint, Oct 253 - c. Jun 260 A.D.; obverse AK ΠΛ OVAΛEPIANON CEB, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right, seen from behind; reverse ICIN-∆-EΩN, mother goddess seated right on a high backed throne, holding swaddled infant on her lap, coiled serpent rising up before her; ex Numismatica Ars Classica Auction 100 (29 May 2017), lot 1320; $115.00 SALE PRICE $92.00


Cotiaeum, Phrygia, c. 235 - 238 A.D. Diogenes, Archon

|Other| |Phrygia|, |Cotiaeum,| |Phrygia,| |c.| |235| |-| |238| |A.D.| |Diogenes,| |Archon||diassarion|
The image of Demos, the personification of the People, was used on ancient coinage as early as the 5th century B.C. In Roman times, many towns under Roman domination struck pseudo-autonomous coinage depicting either the bust or head of Demos, or showed him standing with the Emperor, Boule (the city council), or the Demos of another city.
RP97257. Bronze diassarion, SNG Cop 318 - 319; BMC Phrygia p. 162, 20, SNGvA 3776, SNG Righetti 1165, Kurth Demos 398, Martin Demos 16, VF, well centered on a broad flan, nice dark green patina, light earthen deposits, light marks, some die wear, weight 7.915 g, maximum diameter 25.8 mm, die axis 0o, Cotiaeum (Ktahya, Turkey) mint, time of Valerian I - Gallienus, c. 235 - 238 A.D.; obverse ∆HMOC (Demos) KOTIAEΩN, diademed bust of the Demos to right, slight drapery over far shoulder; reverse EΠI ∆IOΓENOVC ∆IONVCIOV (struck under Diogenes, son of Dionysios), Zeus seated left on a low backless throne, nude to the waist, himation around hips and legs, eagle in extended right hand, long scepter vertical behind in left hand, A-PX (archon - Diogenes' title) divided across fields, KOTIAEΩN in exergue; rare; $95.00 SALE PRICE $85.50


Valerian I, October 253 - c. June 260 A.D., Flaviopolis, Cilicia

|Cilicia|, |Valerian| |I,| |October| |253| |-| |c.| |June| |260| |A.D.,| |Flaviopolis,| |Cilicia||AE| |32|
Flaviopolis was founded in 74 A.D. by Vespasian, as part of an imperial program for the urbanization of the Cilician Plain. Until then the rural hinterland, as well as the city of Anazarbos, was probably administered by the Tracondimotid dynasty from Hieropolis Castabala. Some mosaic floors, inscriptions, and building blocks have been found at Kadirli, and a 6th century church has been excavated. Flaviopolis was bishopric of Cilicia Secunda in the Christian era.
RP110105. Bronze AE 32, Ziegler K 1264; SNG BnF 2202 ff.; SNG Levante 1559; BMC Lycaonia p. 80, 11; Lindgren 1506; SNG Cop -; SNGvA -; SNG Hunterian -, aVF, green patina, porosity, weight 17.734 g, maximum diameter 31.9 mm, die axis 180o, Flaviopolis (Kadirli, Turkey) mint, 253 - 254 A.D.; obverse AVT K Π ΛI OVAΛEPIANOC CEB, radiate, draped, and cuirassed bust of Valerian I right, from behind; reverse ΦΛAVIOΠOΛEITΩN, draped bust of Serapis right, wearing kalathos, ET A−ΠP (year 181) counterclockwise starting below bust; from the Shawn Caza Collection, ex Capitol Coins (Washington DC), BIG 32 mm bronze; scarce; $95.00 SALE PRICE $76.00







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OBVERSE| LEGENDS|

CONCORDIAAVGVSTORVM
PIETASAVGVSTORVM
FELICIBVSAVGG
IMPCAESPLICVALERIANVSAVG
IMPCPLICVALERIANOAVG
IMPCPLICVALERIANVSAVG
IMPCPLICVALERIANVSPAVG
IMPCPLICVALERIANVSPFAVG
IMPCVALERIANVSPFAVG
IMPPLICVALERIANOAVG
IMPVALERIANVSAVG
IMPVALERIANVSPAVG
IMPVALERIANVSPFAVG
IMPVALERIANVSPIVSAVG
IMPVALERIANVSPIVSFELAVG
VALERIANVSPFAVG


REFERENCES|

Besly, E. & R. Bland. The Cunetio Treasure: Roman Coinage of the Third Century AD. (London, 1983).
Bourdel, B. Les Antoniniens emis sous le regne conjoint des empereurs Valerien et Gallien, Mariniane, Salonine, Valerien II, Salonin (253-260 Apr. J.-C.). (2017).
Burnett, A. & R. Bland, eds. Coin Hoards from Roman Britain: The Normanby Hoard and Other Roman Coin Hoards. (London, 1988).
Calic, X. The Roman Avrei, Vol. Two: From Didius Julianus to Constantius I, 193 AD - 335 AD. (Barcelona, 2003).
Cohen, H. Description historique des monnaies frappes sous l'Empire Romain, Vol. 5: Gordian I to Valerian II. (Paris, 1885).
Elmer, G. "Die Mnzprgung der gallischen Kaiser von Postumus bis Tetricus in Kln, Trier und Mailand." in Bonner Jahrbcher 146 (1941).
Gbl, R. et al. Moneta Imperii Romani, Band 35: Die Mnzprgung des Kaiser Valerianus I/Gallienus/Saloninus (253/268), Regalianus (260) un Macrianus/Quietus (260/262). (Vienna, 2000).
Mattingly, H., E. Sydenham & P. Webb. The Roman Imperial Coinage, Vol V, |Part| I, Valerian to Florian. (London, 1927).
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. IV. Valerian I to Allectus. (Oxford, 1978).
Schaad, D. & J. Lafaurie. Le trsor d'Eauze. (Toulouse, 1992).
Seaby, H. & D. Sear. Roman Silver Coins, Volume IV, Gordian III to Postumus. (London, 1982).
Sear, D.R. Roman Coins and Their Values, Volume Three, The Accession of Maximinus I to the Death of Carinus AD 235 - AD 285. (London, 2005).
Vagi, D. Coinage and History of the Roman Empire. (Sidney, 1999).

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