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Search results - "Senior"
Diva_Faustina_Senior_new.jpg
104 viewsDiva Faustina Senior, AD 141, AR Denarius (3.42g). Rome after AD 147.
Obverse: DIVA FAVSTINA draped bust of Diva Faustina right.
Reverse: AVGVSTA, Ceres standing left, holding grain ears in right hand and torch in left.
Ex: Freeman and Sear Fixed Price List 12, Lot 123
3 commentspaul1888
Faustina.jpg
51 viewsDiva Faustina Senior, AD 141, AR Denarius (3.42g). Rome after AD 147.
Obverse: DIVA FAVSTINA draped bust of Diva Faustina right.
Reverse: AVGVSTA, Ceres standing left, holding grain ears in right hand and torch in left.
Ex: Freeman and Sear Fixed Price List 12, Lot 123
1 commentspaul1888
Nero_Den_RIC_60_reimaged.jpg
6 Nero27 viewsNERO
AR Denarius (19mm, 3.43 g, 6h)
Rome mint. Struck ~65-66 AD

O: Laureate head right

R: Salus seated left on throne, holding patera.

RIC I 60; RSC 314. aVF

Ex-CNG Sale 35, Lot 737, 9/20/95

In AD 65-66 two new types appear on the coins of Nero, Jupiter Custos- “Guardian”, and Salus- “Well-Being” (of the emperor). Nero gave thanks for surviving the Pisonian Conspiracy, which got its name from G. Calpurnius Piso, a senator put forward as an alternative emperor by senior military officers and government officials who feared the increasingly erratic Nero. The plot was discovered, many prominent Romans were executed, and others, such as the philosopher Seneca, were forced to commit suicide. This delayed the emperor’s fate for a few years.

RI0043
1 commentsSosius
fas.jpg
Diva Faustina Senior, wife of Antoninus Pius. Died 141 CE. 31 viewsAR Denarius (3.35 gm). 18.5 mm.
Obverse: DIVA FAVSTINA, draped bust right.
Reverse: C-E-RES, Ceres, veiled, standing left, holding long torch and grain ears. RIC III 378 (Antoninus); BMCRE 461 (Antoninus); RSC 136.
.
NORMAN K
charles4-maille-blanche-1ere.JPG
Dy.243 Charles IV (the Fair): maille blanche, 1st emission6 viewsCharles IV, king of France (1322-1328)
Maille blanche, 1st emission (03/02/1324)

Silver (798 ‰), 1.82 g, diameter 22 mm, die axis 2h
O: inner circle: +kAROLVS(diamond)REX; cross pattée; outer circle: BHDICTV⋮SIT#8942nOmЄ⋮DHI⋮nRI
R: inner circle: +FRANChORVm*; châtel tournois; outer circle: a circlet of 10 fleur-de-lis

The h of FRANChORVm is characteristic of the first emission.

Charles was the younger and third son of former king Philip the Fair. He was consequently not supposed to rule. However, as his two brothers successively died without any living son, he became king in 1322. Six years later, he also died without a male heir. So ended up the capetian senior line in 1328.
The legend began then... Jacques de Molay, last Grand Master of the Knights Templar, had cursed King Philip the Fair and his descendants from his execution pyr in 1314. Was the curse finally efficient ?
Charles'cousin, his nearest parent, became then king of France as Philip VI.
Droger
faustinasrceres.jpg
-Faustina Senior sestertius Ceres47 viewsFaustina Senior sestertius. facing right DIVA.FAVSTINA. Ceres standing left, holding corn ears and torch, AVGVSTA.SC. ancientone
94001013.jpg
004b. Agrippina Senior50 viewsAgrippina Senior. Died AD 33. Æ Sestertius (34mm, 24.10 g, 6h). Rome mint. Struck under Gaius (Caligula), AD 40-41. Draped bust right / Carpentum drawn left by two mules. RIC I 55 (Gaius); Trillmich Group I. Good Fine, dark gray-brown patina, rough surfaces.

Check

From the Ronald J. Hansen Collection. Ex Noble 79 (26 July 2005), lot 3590.

Ex-CNG printed sale 94 320/300
1 commentsecoli
Maximiano.jpg
005 - Maximian (second regin 306-308 AD), half follis - RIC 91b42 viewsObv: DN MAXIMIANO FELICISS, laureate bust right in imperial mantle, right hand rised.
Rev: PROVIDENTIA DEORVM, Providentia standing right, extending right hand to Quies standing left, holding branch in right hand and leaning on sceptre left.
Minted in Alexandria (gamma in mid field. ALE in exe), officina 3, earlier to mid 308 AD (that is before his second abdication at the conference in Carnuntum). Scarce according to RIC.

The coin type is supposed to honor the senior emperors Diocletian and Maximian after their abdication in 305 AD.
pierre_p77
01-Constantine-II-Sis-95.jpg
01. Constantine II / 2 soldiers and standard.56 viewsAE 4, 337 - 341, Siscia mint.
Obverse: CONSTANTINVS MAX AVG / Diademed bust of Constantine II.
Reverse: GLORIA EXERCITVS / Two soldiers, each holding spear and shield, one standard between them. Christogram on standard.
Mint mark: ASIS (crescent and dot)
1.70 gm., 15 mm.
RIC #95; LRBC #770; Sear #17432.

Several mints used the title MAX for all three sons of Constantine the Great for a short time after his death. It's use on coins of Constantius II and Constans was quickly dropped, and P F (Pius Felix) was used instead, reserving MAX for the senior emperor (Constantine II).
Callimachus
augustus_RIC373.jpg
027 BC-14 AD - AVGVSTVS AE as - struck by Ascinius Gallus moneyer (16 BC)63 viewsobv: CAESAR AVGVSTVS TRIBVNIC POTEST (bare head right)
rev: C ASINIVS C F GALLVS III VIR AAAFF around large SC
ref: RIC I 373, Cohen 369 (2frcs)
mint: Rome
9.60gms, 25mm

Ascinius Gallus, the former moneyer was an important senator, who married Vipsania, the daughter of Agrippa. On the death of Augustus, briefly, he was offered as a possible alternate to the throne, instead of Tiberius. After the death of Vipsania, he was also an ally of Agrippina Senior, and the "leak green party," a possible plot against the throne identified by Sejanus. He was executed for treason by Tiberius during the Praetorian Prefect's nominal rule of the capital.
berserker
Faustina_sen_Ag-Den_DIVA-FAVSTINA_AED-DIV-FAVSTINAE_RIC-III-AP-343_RSC-1_Rome_150-AD_Q-001_11h_17mm_2,95g-s~0.jpg
036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 0343 (A.Pius), Rome, AR-Denarius, AED DIV FAVSTINAE, Hexastyle temple,83 views036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 0343 (A.Pius), Rome, AR-Denarius, AED DIV FAVSTINAE, Hexastyle temple,
Wife of Antoninus Pius.
avers:- DIVA-FAVSTINA, Diademed and draped bust right.
revers:- AED-DIV-FAVSTINAE, Front view of temple of six columns on five steps, fencing before. Within is a statue of Faustina. Varying ornaments on temple.
exerg: -/-//--, diameter: 17mm, weight: 2,95g, axis: 11h,
mint: Rome, date: 150 A.D., ref: RIC-III-343 (Antoninus Pius)p- , RSC-191, BMCRE-306 (Pius),
Q-001
1 commentsquadrans
Faustina_sen_Ag-Den_DIVA-FAV-STINA_AETER-NITAS_RIC-III-AP-351_C-32_Rome_141-AD_Q-001_6h_17,5-19,5mm_2,50g-s.jpg
036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 0344 (A.Pius), Rome, AR-Denarius, AETERNITAS, Juno standing left, #165 views036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 0344 (A.Pius), Rome, AR-Denarius, AETERNITAS, Juno standing left, #1
Wife of Antoninus Pius.
avers:- DIVA-FAV-STINA, Draped bust right.
revers:- AETER-NITAS, Juno standing left, hand raised, holding scepter.
exerg: -/-//-- , diameter: 17,5-19,5mm, weight: 2,50g, axis: 6h,
mint: Rome, date: 148-161 A.D., ref: RIC-III-344 (Antoninus Pius)p- , C-26,
Q-001
1 commentsquadrans
Faustina_sen_Ag-Den_DIVA-FAV-STINA_AETE-R-NITAS_RIC-III-AP-344_C-32_Rome_141-AD_Q-001_6h_17-17,5mm_2,88ga-s.jpg
036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 0344var. (A.Pius), Rome, AR-Denarius, AETERNITAS, Juno standing left, Unofficial, or ancient imitation !!!74 views036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 0344var. (A.Pius), Rome, AR-Denarius, AETERNITAS, Juno standing left, Unofficial, or ancient imitation !!!
Wife of Antoninus Pius.
avers:- DIVA-FAV-STINA, Draped bust right.
revers:- AETE-R-NITAS, Juno standing left, hand raised, holding scepter.
exerg: -/-//-- , diameter: 17-17,5mm, weight: 2,88g, axis: 6h,
mint: Rome, date: 148-161 A.D. ???, ref: RIC-III-344 ??? (Antoninus Pius)p- , C-26,
Q-001
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Faustina_sen_Ag-Den_DIVA-FAV-STINA_AETER-NITAS_RIC-III-AP-351_C-32_Rome_141-AD_Q-001_axis-h_18mm_2,98g-s.jpg
036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 0351 (A.Pius), Rome, AR-Denarius, AETERNITAS, Providentia, #1102 views036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 0351 (A.Pius), Rome, AR-Denarius, AETERNITAS, Providentia, #1
Wife of Antoninus Pius.
avers:- DIVA-FAV_STINA, Draped bust right.
revers:- AETER-NITAS, Providentia standing left, holding globe and veil above head..
exerg: , diameter: 17-18mm, weight: 2,89g, axis: h,
mint: Rome, date: 148-161 A.D., ref: RIC-III-351 (Antoninus Pius)p-70 , C-32.,
Q-001
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Faustina_sen_Ag-Den_DIVA-FAV-STINA_AETER-NITAS_RIC-III-AP-351_C-32_Rome_141-AD_Q-002_axis-5h_16-18mm_3,46g-s.jpg
036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 0351 (A.Pius), Rome, AR-Denarius, AETERNITAS, Providentia, #278 views036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 0351 (A.Pius), Rome, AR-Denarius, AETERNITAS, Providentia, #2
Wife of Antoninus Pius.
avers:- DIVA-FAV-STINA, Draped bust right.
revers:- AETER-NITAS, Providentia standing left, holding globe and veil above head.
exerg: , diameter: 16-18mm, weight: 3,46g, axis: 5h,
mint: Rome, date: 148-161 A.D., ref: RIC-III-351 (Antoninus Pius)p-70 , C-32.,
Q-002
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Faustina-sen_Ag-Den_DIVA-FAV_STINA__AVG_V_STA_RIC-III-AP-356_C-96_Rome_141-AD_Q-001_axis-h_17-18mm_3,07g-s.jpg
036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 0356 (A.Pius), Rome, AR-Denarius, AVGVSTA, Ceres, 92 views036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 0356 (A.Pius), Rome, AR-Denarius, AVGVSTA, Ceres,
Wife of Antoninus Pius.
avers:- DIVA-FAV-STINA, Draped bust right.
revers:- AVG-V-STA, Ceres standing left, holding torch in right hand, sceptre in left.
exerg: -/-//--, diameter: 16-17mm, weight: 3,11g, axis: h,
mint: Rome, date: after 141 A.D., ref: RIC-III-356 (Antoninus Pius)-p70 , C-96.
Q-001
1 commentsquadrans
Faustina-sen-Ag-Den_DIVA-FAVSTINA_AVGV-STA_RIC-III-AP-360_C-078_Rome_141-AD_Q-001-axis-6h_17,5mm_2,80g-s.jpg
036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 0360 (A.Pius), Rome, AR-Denarius, AVGVSTA, Ceres, 142 views036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 0360 (A.Pius), Rome, AR-Denarius, AVGVSTA, Ceres,
Wife of Antoninus Pius.
avers:- DIVA-FAVSTINA, Draped bust right.
revers:- AVGV-STA, Ceres, veiled, standing left, holding two wheat ears and long lighted torch.
exerg: -/-//--, diameter: 17,5 mm, weight: 2,80g, axis: 6 h,
mint: Rome, date: after 141 A.D., ref: RIC-III-360 (Antoninus Pius)-p70 , C-78.
Q-001
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Faustina_sen_Den_DIVA-FAVSTINA_AVG-VSTA_RIC-III-AP-362_C-104_Rome_141_AD_Q-001_axis-h_xxmm_3,01g-s.jpg
036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 0362 (A.Pius), Rome, AR-Denarius, AVGVSTA, Ceres, #183 views036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 0362 (A.Pius), Rome, AR-Denarius, AVGVSTA, Ceres, #1
Wife of Antoninus Pius.
avers:- DIVA-FAVSTINA, Draped bust right.
revers:- AVG_VSTA, Ceres standing left, holding torch and raising skirt.
exerg: -/-//--, diameter: 17-18mm, weight: 3,01g, axis: h,
mint: Rome, date: after 141 A.D., ref: RIC-III-362 (Antoninus Pius)p-71 , C-104,
Q-001
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Faustina_sen_Den_DIVA-FAVSTINA_AVG-VSTA_RIC-III-AP-362_C-104_Rome_141_AD_Q-002_5h_16-17mm_3,29g-s.jpg
036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 0362 (A.Pius), Rome, AR-Denarius, AVGVSTA, Ceres, #283 views036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 0362 (A.Pius), Rome, AR-Denarius, AVGVSTA, Ceres, #2
Wife of Antoninus Pius.
avers:- DIVA-FAVSTINA, Draped bust right.
revers:- AVG_VSTA, Ceres standing left, holding torch and raising skirt.
exerg: -/-//--, diameter: 16-17mm, weight: 3,29g, axis: 5h,
mint: Rome, date: after 141 A.D., ref: RIC-III-362 (Antoninus Pius)p-71 , C-104,
Q-002
1 commentsquadrans
Faustina_sen_Den_DIVA-FAVSTINA_AVG-VSTA_RIC-III-AP-362_C-104_Rome_141_AD_Q-003_1h_18,5-19mm_3,02g-s.jpg
036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 0362 (A.Pius), Rome, AR-Denarius, AVGVSTA, Ceres, #369 views036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 0362 (A.Pius), Rome, AR-Denarius, AVGVSTA, Ceres, #3
Wife of Antoninus Pius.
avers:- DIVA-FAVSTINA, Draped bust right.
revers:- AVG-VSTA, Ceres standing left, holding torch and raising skirt.
exerg: -/-//--, diameter: 18,5-19mm, weight: 3,02g, axis: 1h,
mint: Rome, date: after 141 A.D., ref: RIC-III-362 (Antoninus Pius)p-71 , C-104,
Q-003
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Faustina-sen-Ag-Den_DIVA-FAVSTINA_AVGV-STA_RIC-III-AP-370_C-116_Rome_141-AD_Q-001-axis-h_xxmm_2,83g-s.jpg
036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 0370 (A.Pius), Rome, AR-Denarius, AVGVSTA, Vesta, 88 views036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 0370 (A.Pius), Rome, AR-Denarius, AVGVSTA, Vesta,
Wife of Antoninus Pius.
avers:- DIVA-FAV_STINA, Draped bust right.
revers:- AVGV-STA, Vesta standing left, sacrificng over altar and holding palladium.
exerg: -/-//--, diameter: 17mm, weight: 2,83g, axis: h,
mint: Rome, date: after 141 A.D., ref: RIC-III-370 (Antoninus Pius)-p-72 , C-116.
Q-001
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Faustina_sen_Ag-Den_DIVA-FAV-STINA_CE-RES_RIC-III-AP-379_RSC-141_Rome_141-AD_Q-001_h_mm_g-s.jpg
036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 0379 (A.Pius), Rome, AR-Denarius, CERES, Ceres, veiled, seated left,65 views036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 0379 (A.Pius), Rome, AR-Denarius, CERES, Ceres, veiled, seated left,
Wife of Antoninus Pius.
avers:- DIVA-FAV-STINA, Draped bust right.
revers:- CE-RES, Ceres, veiled, seated left, holding two ears of corn and long lighted torch.
exerg: -/-//-- , diameter: mm, weight:g, axis: h,
mint: Rome, date: After 141 A.D., ref: RIC-III-379 (Antoninus Pius)p- , RSC-141,
Q-001
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Faustina_sen_Ag-Den_DIVA-FAV-STINA_CONSE-C-RATIO_RIC-III-AP-382a-p-72_C-165a_Rome_148-161-AD_Q-001_6h_17,5-18mm_3,09g-s.jpg
036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 0382a (A.Pius), Rome, AR-Denarius, CONSECRATIO, Ceres standing left,70 views036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 0382a (A.Pius), Rome, AR-Denarius, CONSECRATIO, Ceres standing left,
Wife of Antoninus Pius.
avers:- DIVA-FAV-STINA, Draped bust right.
revers:- CONSE-C-RATIO, Ceres standing left, holding right hand up in greeting and torch.
exerg: , diameter:17,5-18mm, weight: 3,09g, axis: 6h,
mint: Rome, date: 148-161 A.D., ref: RIC-III-382a (Antoninus Pius) p-72 , C-165a.,
Q-001
1 commentsquadrans
Faustina_sen_Ag-Den_DIVA-FAV-STINA_CONSECRATIO_RIC-III-AP-384,_RSC_175,_BMC_473_Rome_141-AD_Q-001_6-h_16-17,5mm_2,08g-s.jpg
036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 0384 (A.Pius), Rome, AR-Denarius, CONSECRATIO, Peacock walking right, head left, #1153 views036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 0384 (A.Pius), Rome, AR-Denarius, CONSECRATIO, Peacock walking right, head left, #1
Wife of Antoninus Pius.
avers:- DIVA-FAV-STINA, Draped bust right.
revers:- CONSECRATIO, Peacock walking right, head left.
exerg: , diameter: 16-17,5mm, weight: 2,08g, axis: 6h,
mint: Rome, date: 148-161 A.D., ref: RIC-III-384 (Antoninus Pius)p- , RSC-175, BMC-473,
Q-001
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Faustina_sen_Ag-Den_DIVA-AVG-FAVSTINA_DEDICATIO-AEDIS_RIC-III-AP-388_RSC-191_Rome_141-AD_Q-001_7h_19-17mm_3,03g-s.jpg
036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 0388 (A.Pius), Rome, AR-Denarius, DEDICATIO AEDIS, Hexastyle temple,87 views036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 0388 (A.Pius), Rome, AR-Denarius, DEDICATIO AEDIS, Hexastyle temple,
Wife of Antoninus Pius.
avers:- DIVA-AVG-FAVSTINA, Draped bust right.
revers:- DEDICATIO-AEDIS, Frontal view of a hexastyle temple, Victories in corners.
exerg: , diameter: 17-19mm, weight: 3,03g, axis: 7h,
mint: Rome, date: 141-161 A.D., ref: RIC-III-388 (Antoninus Pius)p- , RSC-191, BMCRE-306 (Pius),
Q-001
This coin type records the dedication of the
temple of Divus Antoninus and Diva Faustina. The
dedication ceremonies took place in 142 AD, and
construction was completed in 150 AD. The temple
still stands today, overlooking the Forum.
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Faustina_sen_AE-Sest_DIVA-FAV-STINA_AETER-NITAS_S-C_RIC-III-AP-1143_C-210_Rome_141-AD_Q-001_axis-11h_33mm_26,70g-s.jpg
036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 1103 (A.Pius), Rome, AE-Sestertius, AETERNITAS, Aeternitas seated left,119 views036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 1103 (A.Pius), Rome, AE-Sestertius, AETERNITAS, Aeternitas seated left,
Wife of Antoninus Pius.
avers:- DIVA-FAV-STINA, Draped bust right.
revers:- AETER-NITAS, Aeternitas seated left holding phoenix and scepter.
exerg: -/-//S-C, diameter: 33mm, weight: 26,70g, axis: 11h,
mint: Rome, date: after 141 A.D., ref: RIC-III-1103 (Antoninus Pius) p-162 , C-15-17,
Q-001
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Faustina_sen_AE-Sest_DIVA-FAVSTINA_I-V-N-O_S-C_RIC-III-AP-1143_C-210_Rome_141-AD_Q-001_axis-h_31mm_x,xxg-s.jpg
036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 1143 (A.Pius), Rome, AE-Sestertius, IVNO, Juno,105 views036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 1143 (A.Pius), Rome, AE-Sestertius, IVNO, Juno,
Wife of Antoninus Pius.
avers:- DIVA-FAVSTINA, Draped bust right.
revers:- I-V-N-O, Juno standing left, holding patera and scepter.
exerg: -/-//--, diameter: 31mm, weight: x,xxg, axis: h,
mint: Rome, date: after 141 A.D., ref: RIC-III-1143 (Antoninus Pius)p-165 , C-210,
Q-001
1 commentsquadrans
Faustina_sen_AE-Dup-or-As_DIVA-FAV-STINA_AVGV-STA_S-C_RIC-III-AP-1169b_C-80_Rome_after-141-AD_Q-001_5h_26-26,5mm_12,44ga-s.jpg
036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 1169b (A.Pius), Rome, AE-dupondius, AVGVSTA, Ceres standing left, Scarce !181 views036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 1169b (A.Pius), Rome, AE-dupondius, AVGVSTA, Ceres standing left, Scarce !
Wife of Antoninus Pius.
avers:- DIVA-FAV-STINA, Draped and veiled bust right.
revers:- AVGV-STA,Ceres standing left, holding corn ears and transverse long torch, S-C across the field.
exerg: S/C//--, diameter: 26-26,5mm, weight: 12,44g, axis:5 h,
mint: Rome, date: after 141 A.D., ref: RIC-III-1169b (Antoninus Pius)-p-167, C-80, Scarce !,
Q-001
2 commentsquadrans
Faustina-sen_AE-Dup_DIVA-FAV_STINA__AVG_V_STA_S-C_RIC-000_C-000_Q-001_27-28mm_11,75g-s.jpg
036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 1173a (A.Pius), Rome, AE-dupondius, AVGVSTA, Ceres, Scarce !100 views036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 1173a (A.Pius), Rome, AE-dupondius, AVGVSTA, Ceres, Scarce !
Wife of Antoninus Pius.
avers:- DIVA-FAV_STINA, Draped bust right.
revers:- AVGV_STA, Ceres standing left, holding torch in right hand, sceptre in left, S-C across the field.
exerg: -/-//--, diameter: 27-28mm, weight: 11,75g, axis: h,
mint: Rome, date: after 141 A.D., ref: RIC-III-1173a (Antoninus Pius)-p-167, C-100,99, Scarce,
Q-001
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036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 1173a and 356, Rome, AE-dupondius and AR-Denarius, AVGVSTA, Ceres, 87 views036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 1173a and 356, Rome, AE-dupondius and AR-Denarius, AVGVSTA, Ceres,
Wife of Antoninus Pius.
avers:- DIVA-FAV_STINA, Draped bust right.
revers:- AVG_V_STA, S-C, or AVG_V_STA, Ceres standing left, holding torch in right hand, sceptre in left.
exerg:-/-//--, diameter: 27-28mm, 16-17mm, weight: 11,75, 3,11g, axis: h, h,
mint: Rome, date: after 141 A.D., ref: RIC-III-1173a (Antoninus Pius) , C-100,99, and RIC-III-356 (Antoninus Pius) , C-96
Q-001
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036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 1180 (A.Pius), Rome, AE-As, AVGVSTA, Vesta standing left, #1 61 views036 Faustina Senior (100-141 A.D.), RIC III 1180 (A.Pius), Rome, AE-As, AVGVSTA, Vesta standing left, #1
Wife of Antoninus Pius.
avers: DIVA FAV STINA, Draped bust right.
reverse: AVGV STA, Vesta standing left, sacrificing from patera over flaming altar to left and holding palladium in the left hand, S-C across the field.
exergue: S/C//--, diameter: 24,0-24,5mm, weight: 9,4g, axis: 6h,
mint: Rome, date: after 141 A.D., ref: RIC III 1180 (Antoninus Pius), C 118,
Q-001
1 commentsquadrans
RI_049f_img.jpg
049 - Faustina Senior - Barbarous denarius - AVGVSTA?19 viewsBarbarous Denarius
Obv:- FAVSTINA AVGVSTA, Draped bust right
Rev:- AVGVSTA?, Aeternitas standing holding sceptre
4 commentsmaridvnvm
RI_049g_img.jpg
049 - Faustina Senior denarius - RIC 382b corr 10 viewsDenarius
Obv:- DIVA FAVSTINA, Draped bust right
Rev:- CONSECRATIO, Ceres standing left, holding torch and raising right hand
Minted in Rome.
Reference:– RIC 382b corr (listed incorrectly as veiled), RSC 165a, BMC 467
maridvnvm
RI_049e_img.jpg
049 - Faustina Senior, Denarius - RIC 34419 viewsObv:- DIVA FAVSTINA, Draped bust right
Rev:- ATERNITAS, Aeternitas standing holding sceptre
Minted in Rome. post A.D. 141
Reference:– RIC 344
maridvnvm
RI_049d_img.jpg
049 - Faustina Senior, Denarius - RIC 34418 viewsObv:- DIVA FAVSTINA, Draped bust right
Rev:- ATERNITAS, Aeternitas standing holding sceptre
Minted in Rome. post A.D. 141
Reference:– RIC 344
maridvnvm
Faustina-Sr-RIC-394a.jpg
057. Faustina Senior.16 viewsDenarius, after 141 AD, Rome mint.
Obverse: DIVA AVG FAVSTINA / Bust of Faustina.
Reverse: PIETAS AVG / Pietas veiled, standing, dropping incense on altar, and holding a box.
3.59 gm., 18.5 mm.
RIC #394a; Sear #4598.

Faustina died early on in the reign of her husband. Most of her coinage is from the extensive memorial coinage issued in the years after her death. The portrait on this particular coin is exceptionally elegant and dignified.

Visible on the reverse (lower right edge) of this coin is an inclusion of copper that did not get melted and mixed with the silver when the planchet was made. That this coin is probably not a fouree is evidenced by the fact that it weighs a bit more than other denarii of the period.
Callimachus
faustina-sr_den_veiled-bust-peacock_2_82gr_feb2012a.JPG
06 - Faustina I - 02 - AR Denarius - Peacock 'CONSECRATIO' - NGC Choice VF56 viewsAncient Roman Empire
Empress Faustina Senior (138 - 141), Wife of Emperor Antoninus Pius (AD 138 - 161).
Silver Denarius, Struck at the Rome Mint by the Emperor Antoninus Pius to consecrate and commemorate his wife after her death.

(All Titles in Latin)
obv: DIVA FAUSTINA - Veiled and Draped bust facing right.
rev: CONSECRATIO - Peacock facing right, head left, standing on scepter with knobs on both ends.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

*Note how the two head feathers on the top of the Peacock's head seperate the 'R' and the 'A' in " CONSECR ATIO ' on the reverse.
***Less common type with Veiled bust obverse rather than her usual bust with hair wrapped on the top of her head, like on my other example of this type with the same reverse design and titles, and the same obverse titles.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Certified "Choice Very Fine" by NGC Ancients.
Strike: 4/5
Surface: 4/5
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
>^..^< CLICK PHOTO FOR FULLSIZE IMAGE >^..^
5 commentsrexesq
faustina-sr_den_veiled-bust-peacock_2_82gr_feb2012b.jpg
06 - Faustina I - 02 - AR Denarius - Peacock 'CONSECRATIO' - NGC Choice VF.14 viewsAncient Roman Empire
Empress Faustina Senior (138 - 141), Wife of Emperor Antoninus Pius (AD 138 - 161).
Silver Denarius, Struck at the Rome Mint by the Emperor Antoninus Pius to consecrate and commemorate his wife after her death.

(All Titles in Latin)
obv: DIVA FAUSTINA - Veiled and Draped bust facing right.
rev: CONSECRATIO - Peacock facing right, head left, standing on scepter with knobs on both ends.
~~
*Note how the head feathers on the peacock's head seperate the 'R' and the 'A' in CONSECR ATIO

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Certified "Choice Very Fine" by NGC Ancients.
Strike: 4/5
Surface: 4/5
----------------------------------------------------------
----------------------------------------------------------
** Any scratches, smudges or marks are on the slab, not the coin itself. **
rexesq
DiocleAnt.jpg
1301a, Diocletian, 284-305 A.D. (Antioch)90 viewsDIOCLETIAN (284 – 305 AD) AE Antoninianus, 293-95 AD, RIC V 322, Cohen 34. 20.70 mm/3.1 gm, aVF, Antioch. Obverse: IMP C C VAL DIOCLETIANVS P F AVG, Radiate bust right, draped & cuirassed; Reverse: CONCORDIA MILITVM, Jupiter presents Victory on a globe to Diocletian, I/XXI. Early Diocletian with dusty earthen green patina.


De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families

Diocletian ( 284-305 A.D.)

Ralph W. Mathisen
University of South Carolina


Summary and Introduction
The Emperor Gaius Aurelius Valerius Diocletianus (A.D. 284-305) put an end to the disastrous phase of Roman history known as the "Military Anarchy" or the "Imperial Crisis" (235-284). He established an obvious military despotism and was responsible for laying the groundwork for the second phase of the Roman Empire, which is known variously as the "Dominate," the "Tetrarchy," the "Later Roman Empire," or the "Byzantine Empire." His reforms ensured the continuity of the Roman Empire in the east for more than a thousand years.

Diocletian's Early Life and Reign
Diocletian was born ca. 236/237 on the Dalmatian coast, perhaps at Salona. He was of very humble birth, and was originally named Diocles. He would have received little education beyond an elementary literacy and he was apparently deeply imbued with religious piety He had a wife Prisca and a daughter Valeria, both of whom reputedly were Christians. During Diocletian's early life, the Roman empire was in the midst of turmoil. In the early years of the third century, emperors increasingly insecure on their thrones had granted inflationary pay raises to the soldiers. The only meaningful income the soldiers now received was in the form of gold donatives granted by newly acclaimed emperors. Beginning in 235, armies throughout the empire began to set up their generals as rival emperors. The resultant civil wars opened up the empire to invasion in both the north, by the Franks, Alamanni, and Goths, and the east, by the Sassanid Persians. Another reason for the unrest in the army was the great gap between the social background of the common soldiers and the officer corps.

Diocletian sought his fortune in the army. He showed himself to be a shrewd, able, and ambitious individual. He is first attested as "Duke of Moesia" (an area on the banks of the lower Danube River), with responsibility for border defense. He was a prudent and methodical officer, a seeker of victory rather than glory. In 282, the legions of the upper Danube proclaimed the praetorian prefect Carus as emperor. Diocletian found favor under the new emperor, and was promoted to Count of the Domestics, the commander of the cavalry arm of the imperial bodyguard. In 283 he was granted the honor of a consulate.

In 284, in the midst of a campaign against the Persians, Carus was killed, struck by a bolt of lightning which one writer noted might have been forged in a legionary armory. This left the empire in the hands of his two young sons, Numerian in the east and Carinus in the west. Soon thereafter, Numerian died under mysterious circumstances near Nicomedia, and Diocletian was acclaimed emperor in his place. At this time he changed his name from Diocles to Diocletian. In 285 Carinus was killed in a battle near Belgrade, and Diocletian gained control of the entire empire.

Diocletian's Administrative and Military Reforms
As emperor, Diocletian was faced with many problems. His most immediate concerns were to bring the mutinous and increasingly barbarized Roman armies back under control and to make the frontiers once again secure from invasion. His long-term goals were to restore effective government and economic prosperity to the empire. Diocletian concluded that stern measures were necessary if these problems were to be solved. He felt that it was the responsibility of the imperial government to take whatever steps were necessary, no matter how harsh or innovative, to bring the empire back under control.

Diocletian was able to bring the army back under control by making several changes. He subdivided the roughly fifty existing provinces into approximately one hundred. The provinces also were apportioned among twelve "dioceses," each under a "vicar," and later also among four "prefectures," each under a "praetorian prefect." As a result, the imperial bureaucracy became increasingly bloated. He institutionalized the policy of separating civil and military careers. He divided the army itself into so-called "border troops," actually an ineffective citizen militia, and "palace troops," the real field army, which often was led by the emperor in person.

Following the precedent of Aurelian (A.D.270-275), Diocletian transformed the emperorship into an out-and-out oriental monarchy. Access to him became restricted; he now was addressed not as First Citizen (Princeps) or the soldierly general (Imperator), but as Lord and Master (Dominus Noster) . Those in audience were required to prostrate themselves on the ground before him.

Diocletian also concluded that the empire was too large and complex to be ruled by only a single emperor. Therefore, in order to provide an imperial presence throughout the empire, he introduced the "Tetrarchy," or "Rule by Four." In 285, he named his lieutenant Maximianus "Caesar," and assigned him the western half of the empire. This practice began the process which would culminate with the de facto split of the empire in 395. Both Diocletian and Maximianus adopted divine attributes. Diocletian was identified with Jupiter and Maximianus with Hercules. In 286, Diocletian promoted Maximianus to the rank of Augustus, "Senior Emperor," and in 293 he appointed two new Caesars, Constantius (the father of Constantine I ), who was given Gaul and Britain in the west, and Galerius, who was assigned the Balkans in the east.

By instituting his Tetrarchy, Diocletian also hoped to solve another problem. In the Augustan Principate, there had been no constitutional method for choosing new emperors. According to Diocletian's plan, the successor of each Augustus would be the respective Caesar, who then would name a new Caesar. Initially, the Tetrarchy operated smoothly and effectively.

Once the army was under control, Diocletian could turn his attention to other problems. The borders were restored and strengthened. In the early years of his reign, Diocletian and his subordinates were able to defeat foreign enemies such as Alamanni, Sarmatians, Saracens, Franks, and Persians, and to put down rebellions in Britain and Egypt. The easter frontier was actually expanded.

.
Diocletian's Economic Reforms
Another problem was the economy, which was in an especially sorry state. The coinage had become so debased as to be virtually worthless. Diocletian's attempt to reissue good gold and silver coins failed because there simply was not enough gold and silver available to restore confidence in the currency. A "Maximum Price Edict" issued in 301, intended to curb inflation, served only to drive goods onto the black market. Diocletian finally accepted the ruin of the money economy and revised the tax system so that it was based on payments in kind . The soldiers too came to be paid in kind.

In order to assure the long term survival of the empire, Diocletian identified certain occupations which he felt would have to be performed. These were known as the "compulsory services." They included such occupations as soldiers, bakers, members of town councils, and tenant farmers. These functions became hereditary, and those engaging in them were inhibited from changing their careers. The repetitious nature of these laws, however, suggests that they were not widely obeyed. Diocletian also expanded the policy of third-century emperors of restricting the entry of senators into high-ranking governmental posts, especially military ones.

Diocletian attempted to use the state religion as a unifying element. Encouraged by the Caesar Galerius, Diocletian in 303 issued a series of four increasingly harsh decrees designed to compel Christians to take part in the imperial cult, the traditional means by which allegiance was pledged to the empire. This began the so-called "Great Persecution."

Diocletian's Resignation and Death
On 1 May 305, wearied by his twenty years in office, and determined to implement his method for the imperial succession, Diocletian abdicated. He compelled his co-regent Maximianus to do the same. Constantius and Galerius then became the new Augusti, and two new Caesars were selected, Maximinus (305-313) in the east and Severus (305- 307) in the west. Diocletian then retired to his palace at Split on the Croatian coast. In 308 he declined an offer to resume the purple, and the aged ex-emperor died at Split on 3 December 316.

Copyright (C) 1996, Ralph W. Mathisen, University of South Carolina
Published: De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families http://www.roman-emperors.org/startup.htm. Used by permission.

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.

1 commentsCleisthenes
DicletianConcordCyz.jpg
1301b, Diocletian, 20 November 284 - 1 March 305 A.D.56 viewsDiocletian. RIC V Part II Cyzicus 256 var. Not listed with pellet in exegrue
Item ref: RI141f. VF. Minted in Cyzicus (B in centre field, XXI dot in exegrue)Obverse:- IMP CC VAL DIOCLETIANVS AVG, Radiate, draped and cuirassed bust right. Reverse:- CONCORDIA MILITVM, Diocletian standing right, holding parazonium, receiving Victory from Jupiter standing left with scepter.
A post reform radiate of Diocletian. Ex Maridvnvm.

De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families

Diocletian ( 284-305 A.D.)

Ralph W. Mathisen
University of South Carolina


Summary and Introduction
The Emperor Gaius Aurelius Valerius Diocletianus (A.D. 284-305) put an end to the disastrous phase of Roman history known as the "Military Anarchy" or the "Imperial Crisis" (235-284). He established an obvious military despotism and was responsible for laying the groundwork for the second phase of the Roman Empire, which is known variously as the "Dominate," the "Tetrarchy," the "Later Roman Empire," or the "Byzantine Empire." His reforms ensured the continuity of the Roman Empire in the east for more than a thousand years.

Diocletian's Early Life and Reign
Diocletian was born ca. 236/237 on the Dalmatian coast, perhaps at Salona. He was of very humble birth, and was originally named Diocles. He would have received little education beyond an elementary literacy and he was apparently deeply imbued with religious piety He had a wife Prisca and a daughter Valeria, both of whom reputedly were Christians. During Diocletian's early life, the Roman empire was in the midst of turmoil. In the early years of the third century, emperors increasingly insecure on their thrones had granted inflationary pay raises to the soldiers. The only meaningful income the soldiers now received was in the form of gold donatives granted by newly acclaimed emperors. Beginning in 235, armies throughout the empire began to set up their generals as rival emperors. The resultant civil wars opened up the empire to invasion in both the north, by the Franks, Alamanni, and Goths, and the east, by the Sassanid Persians. Another reason for the unrest in the army was the great gap between the social background of the common soldiers and the officer corps.

Diocletian sought his fortune in the army. He showed himself to be a shrewd, able, and ambitious individual. He is first attested as "Duke of Moesia" (an area on the banks of the lower Danube River), with responsibility for border defense. He was a prudent and methodical officer, a seeker of victory rather than glory. In 282, the legions of the upper Danube proclaimed the praetorian prefect Carus as emperor. Diocletian found favor under the new emperor, and was promoted to Count of the Domestics, the commander of the cavalry arm of the imperial bodyguard. In 283 he was granted the honor of a consulate.

In 284, in the midst of a campaign against the Persians, Carus was killed, struck by a bolt of lightning which one writer noted might have been forged in a legionary armory. This left the empire in the hands of his two young sons, Numerian in the east and Carinus in the west. Soon thereafter, Numerian died under mysterious circumstances near Nicomedia, and Diocletian was acclaimed emperor in his place. At this time he changed his name from Diocles to Diocletian. In 285 Carinus was killed in a battle near Belgrade, and Diocletian gained control of the entire empire.

Diocletian's Administrative and Military Reforms
As emperor, Diocletian was faced with many problems. His most immediate concerns were to bring the mutinous and increasingly barbarized Roman armies back under control and to make the frontiers once again secure from invasion. His long-term goals were to restore effective government and economic prosperity to the empire. Diocletian concluded that stern measures were necessary if these problems were to be solved. He felt that it was the responsibility of the imperial government to take whatever steps were necessary, no matter how harsh or innovative, to bring the empire back under control.

Diocletian was able to bring the army back under control by making several changes. He subdivided the roughly fifty existing provinces into approximately one hundred. The provinces also were apportioned among twelve "dioceses," each under a "vicar," and later also among four "prefectures," each under a "praetorian prefect." As a result, the imperial bureaucracy became increasingly bloated. He institutionalized the policy of separating civil and military careers. He divided the army itself into so-called "border troops," actually an ineffective citizen militia, and "palace troops," the real field army, which often was led by the emperor in person.

Following the precedent of Aurelian (A.D.270-275), Diocletian transformed the emperorship into an out-and-out oriental monarchy. Access to him became restricted; he now was addressed not as First Citizen (Princeps) or the soldierly general (Imperator), but as Lord and Master (Dominus Noster) . Those in audience were required to prostrate themselves on the ground before him.

Diocletian also concluded that the empire was too large and complex to be ruled by only a single emperor. Therefore, in order to provide an imperial presence throughout the empire, he introduced the "Tetrarchy," or "Rule by Four." In 285, he named his lieutenant Maximianus "Caesar," and assigned him the western half of the empire. This practice began the process which would culminate with the de facto split of the empire in 395. Both Diocletian and Maximianus adopted divine attributes. Diocletian was identified with Jupiter and Maximianus with Hercules. In 286, Diocletian promoted Maximianus to the rank of Augustus, "Senior Emperor," and in 293 he appointed two new Caesars, Constantius (the father of Constantine I ), who was given Gaul and Britain in the west, and Galerius, who was assigned the Balkans in the east.

By instituting his Tetrarchy, Diocletian also hoped to solve another problem. In the Augustan Principate, there had been no constitutional method for choosing new emperors. According to Diocletian's plan, the successor of each Augustus would be the respective Caesar, who then would name a new Caesar. Initially, the Tetrarchy operated smoothly and effectively.

Once the army was under control, Diocletian could turn his attention to other problems. The borders were restored and strengthened. In the early years of his reign, Diocletian and his subordinates were able to defeat foreign enemies such as Alamanni, Sarmatians, Saracens, Franks, and Persians, and to put down rebellions in Britain and Egypt. The easter frontier was actually expanded.

.
Diocletian's Economic Reforms
Another problem was the economy, which was in an especially sorry state. The coinage had become so debased as to be virtually worthless. Diocletian's attempt to reissue good gold and silver coins failed because there simply was not enough gold and silver available to restore confidence in the currency. A "Maximum Price Edict" issued in 301, intended to curb inflation, served only to drive goods onto the black market. Diocletian finally accepted the ruin of the money economy and revised the tax system so that it was based on payments in kind . The soldiers too came to be paid in kind.

In order to assure the long term survival of the empire, Diocletian identified certain occupations which he felt would have to be performed. These were known as the "compulsory services." They included such occupations as soldiers, bakers, members of town councils, and tenant farmers. These functions became hereditary, and those engaging in them were inhibited from changing their careers. The repetitious nature of these laws, however, suggests that they were not widely obeyed. Diocletian also expanded the policy of third-century emperors of restricting the entry of senators into high-ranking governmental posts, especially military ones.

Diocletian attempted to use the state religion as a unifying element. Encouraged by the Caesar Galerius, Diocletian in 303 issued a series of four increasingly harsh decrees designed to compel Christians to take part in the imperial cult, the traditional means by which allegiance was pledged to the empire. This began the so-called "Great Persecution."

Diocletian's Resignation and Death
On 1 May 305, wearied by his twenty years in office, and determined to implement his method for the imperial succession, Diocletian abdicated. He compelled his co-regent Maximianus to do the same. Constantius and Galerius then became the new Augusti, and two new Caesars were selected, Maximinus (305-313) in the east and Severus (305- 307) in the west. Diocletian then retired to his palace at Split on the Croatian coast. In 308 he declined an offer to resume the purple, and the aged ex-emperor died at Split on 3 December 316.

Copyright (C) 1996, Ralph W. Mathisen, University of South Carolina
Published: De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families http://www.roman-emperors.org/startup.htm. Used by permission.

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.


Cleisthenes
MaxHercRIC5iiRome.jpg
1302a, Maximian, 285 - 305, 306 - 308, and 310 A.D.46 viewsMaximianus AE Antoninianus. RIC V Part II 506 Bust Type C. Cohen 355; VF; Minted in Rome A.D. 285-286. Obverse: IMP MAXIMIANVS P F AVG, radiate, draped & cuirassed bust right; Rverse: IOVI CONSERVAT AVGG, Jupiter standing left holding thunderbolt & scepter, XXIZ in exergue. Ex maridvnvm.

De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families

Maximian, 285-305, 306-308, and 310 A.D.

Michael DiMaio, Jr.
Salve Regina University

Perhaps born ca. 249/250 A.D. in Sirmium in the area of the Balkans, Marcus Aurelius Valerius Maximianus, more commonly known as Maximianus Herculius (Maximian), had been a soldier before he put on the purple. A fellow soldier with the Emperor Diocletian, he had served in the military during the reigns of Aurelian and Probus.

When the Emperor Diocletian determined that the empire was too large for one man to govern on his own, he made Maximian his Caesar in 285/6 and elevated him to the rank of Augustus in perhaps the spring of 286. While Diocletian ruled in the East, Maximian ruled in the West. In 293, in order to maintain and to strengthen the stability of the empire, Diocletian appointed Constantius I Chlorus to serve Maximian as a Caesar in the West, while Galerius did the same job in the East. This arrangement, called the "Tetrarchy", was meant not only to provide a stronger foundation for the two emperors' rule, but also to end any possible fighting over the succession to the throne once the two senior Augusti had left the throne--a problem which had bedeviled the principate since the time of the Emperor Augustus. To cement the relationship between Maximian and his Caesar, Constantius married Maximian's elder daughter Theodora. A decade later, Constantius' son Constantine would marry Maximia's younger daughter Fausta.

On 1 May 305 Diocletian, at Nicomedeia, and Maximian, at Mediolanum, divested themselves of the purple. Their resignations seem largely due to the almost fatal illness that Diocletian contracted toward the end of 304. Diocletian seems to have forced his colleague to abdicate. In any case, Herculius had sworn an oath at the temple of Capitoline Jupiter to carry out the terms of the abdication. Constantius and Galerius were appointed as Augusti, with Maximinus Daia and Severus as the new Caesars. The retired emperors then returned to private life. Diocletian's retirement was at Salonae in Dalmatia, while Herculius' retreat was either in Lucania or Campania.

Maximian's retirement, however, was of short duration because, a little more than a year later on 28 October 306, his son Maxentius was proclaimed emperor at Rome. To give his regime an aura of legitimacy, Maximian was forced to affirm his son's acclamation. When Galerius learned of Maxentius' rebellion, he sent Severus against him with an army that had formerly been under his father's command. Maxentius invested his father with the purple again to win over his enemy's troops, a ruse which succeeded. Perhaps to strengthen his own position, in 307 Maximian went to Gaul and married his daughter Fausta to Constantine. When Constantine refused to become embroiled in the civil war between Galerius and Maxentius, Maximian returned to Rome in 308 and attempted to depose his son; however, he did not succeed. When Maximian was unable to convince Diocletian to take up the purple again at a meeting in Carnuntum in late 308, he returned to his son-in-law's side in Gaul.

Although Maximian was treated with all of the respect due a former emperor, he still desired to be more than a figurehead. He decided to seize the purple from Constantine when his son-in-law least expected it. His opportunity came in the summer of 310 when the Franks revolted. When Constantine had taken a small part of his army into enemy territory, Maximian proclaimed himself again emperor and paid the soldiers under his command a donative to secure their loyalty. As soon as Constantine received news about Maximian's revolt in July 310, he went south and reached Arelate before his father-in-law could mount a defense of the city. Although Maximian fled to Massilia, his son-in-law seized the city and took Maximian prisoner. Although he was deprived of the purple, he was granted pardon for his crimes. Unable to endure the humiliation of his defeat, he attempted to have Constantine murdered in his bed. The plot failed because he tried to get his daughter Fausta's help in the matter; she chose to reveal the matter to her husband. Because of this attempt on his son-in-law's life Maximian was dead by the end of July either by his own hand or on the orders of his intended victim.

Eutropia was of Syrian extraction and her marriage to Maximian seems to have been her second. She bore him two children: Maxentius and Fausta. An older daughter, Theodora, may have been a product of her first marriage. Fausta became the wife of Constantine I , while her sister Theodora was the second spouse of his father Constantius I Chlorus . Eutropia apparently survived all her children, with the possible exception of her daughter Fausta who seems to have died in 326. Eutropia is also said to have become a Christian.

By Michael DiMaio, Jr., Salve Regina University
Published: De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families http://www.roman-emperors.org/startup.htm. Used by permission.

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.
Cleisthenes
Max.jpg
1302b, Maximian, 285-305, 306-308, and 310 A.D., commemorative issued by Constantine the Great (Siscia)54 viewsMaximian, 285-305, 306-308, and 310 A.D., commemorative issued by Constantine the Great. Bronze AE3, RIC 41, VF, Siscia, 1.30g, 16.1mm, 0o, 317-318 A.D. Obverse: DIVO MAXIMIANO SEN FORT IMP, laureate and veiled head right; Reverse: REQVIES OPTIMO-RVM MERITORVM, Emperor seated left on curule chair, raising hand and holding scepter, SIS in exergue; scarce (R3).


De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families

Maximian, 285-305, 306-308, and 310 A.D.

Michael DiMaio, Jr.
Salve Regina University

Perhaps born ca. 249/250 A.D. in Sirmium in the area of the Balkans, Marcus Aurelius Valerius Maximianus, more commonly known as Maximianus Herculius (Maximian), had been a soldier before he put on the purple. A fellow soldier with the Emperor Diocletian, he had served in the military during the reigns of Aurelian and Probus.

When the Emperor Diocletian determined that the empire was too large for one man to govern on his own, he made Maximian his Caesar in 285/6 and elevated him to the rank of Augustus in perhaps the spring of 286. While Diocletian ruled in the East, Maximian ruled in the West. In 293, in order to maintain and to strengthen the stability of the empire, Diocletian appointed Constantius I Chlorus to serve Maximian as a Caesar in the West, while Galerius did the same job in the East. This arrangement, called the "Tetrarchy", was meant not only to provide a stronger foundation for the two emperors' rule, but also to end any possible fighting over the succession to the throne once the two senior Augusti had left the throne--a problem which had bedeviled the principate since the time of the Emperor Augustus. To cement the relationship between Maximian and his Caesar, Constantius married Maximian's elder daughter Theodora. A decade later, Constantius' son Constantine would marry Maximia's younger daughter Fausta.

On 1 May 305 Diocletian, at Nicomedeia, and Maximian, at Mediolanum, divested themselves of the purple. Their resignations seem largely due to the almost fatal illness that Diocletian contracted toward the end of 304. Diocletian seems to have forced his colleague to abdicate. In any case, Herculius had sworn an oath at the temple of Capitoline Jupiter to carry out the terms of the abdication. Constantius and Galerius were appointed as Augusti, with Maximinus Daia and Severus as the new Caesars. The retired emperors then returned to private life. Diocletian's retirement was at Salonae in Dalmatia, while Herculius' retreat was either in Lucania or Campania.

Maximian's retirement, however, was of short duration because, a little more than a year later on 28 October 306, his son Maxentius was proclaimed emperor at Rome. To give his regime an aura of legitimacy, Maximian was forced to affirm his son's acclamation. When Galerius learned of Maxentius' rebellion, he sent Severus against him with an army that had formerly been under his father's command. Maxentius invested his father with the purple again to win over his enemy's troops, a ruse which succeeded. Perhaps to strengthen his own position, in 307 Maximian went to Gaul and married his daughter Fausta to Constantine. When Constantine refused to become embroiled in the civil war between Galerius and Maxentius, Maximian returned to Rome in 308 and attempted to depose his son; however, he did not succeed. When Maximian was unable to convince Diocletian to take up the purple again at a meeting in Carnuntum in late 308, he returned to his son-in-law's side in Gaul.

Although Maximian was treated with all of the respect due a former emperor, he still desired to be more than a figurehead. He decided to seize the purple from Constantine when his son-in-law least expected it. His opportunity came in the summer of 310 when the Franks revolted. When Constantine had taken a small part of his army into enemy territory, Maximian proclaimed himself again emperor and paid the soldiers under his command a donative to secure their loyalty. As soon as Constantine received news about Maximian's revolt in July 310, he went south and reached Arelate before his father-in-law could mount a defense of the city. Although Maximian fled to Massilia, his son-in-law seized the city and took Maximian prisoner. Although he was deprived of the purple, he was granted pardon for his crimes. Unable to endure the humiliation of his defeat, he attempted to have Constantine murdered in his bed. The plot failed because he tried to get his daughter Fausta's help in the matter; she chose to reveal the matter to her husband. Because of this attempt on his son-in-law's life Maximian was dead by the end of July either by his own hand or on the orders of his intended victim.

Eutropia was of Syrian extraction and her marriage to Maximian seems to have been her second. She bore him two children: Maxentius and Fausta. An older daughter, Theodora, may have been a product of her first marriage. Fausta became the wife of Constantine I , while her sister Theodora was the second spouse of his father Constantius I Chlorus . Eutropia apparently survived all her children, with the possible exception of her daughter Fausta who seems to have died in 326. Eutropia is also said to have become a Christian.

By Michael DiMaio, Jr., Salve Regina University
Published: De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families http://www.roman-emperors.org/startup.htm. Used by permission.

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.
Cleisthenes
GaleriusAugCyz.jpg
1303a, Galerius, 1 March 305 - 5 May 311 A.D.34 viewsGalerius, RIC VI 59, Cyzicus S, VF, Cyzicus S, 6.4 g, 25.86 mm; 309-310 AD; Obverse: GAL MAXIMIANVS P F AVG, laureate bust right; Reverse: GENIO A-VGVS[TI], Genius stg. left, naked but for chlamys over left shoulder, holding patera and cornucopiae. A nice example with sharp detail and nice brown hoard patina. Ex Ancient Imports.


De Imperatoribus Romanis,
An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Emperors

Galerius (305-311 A.D.)

Michael DiMaio, Jr.
Salve Regina University


Caius Galerius Valerius Maximianus, more commonly known as Galerius, was from Illyricum; his father, whose name is unknown, was of peasant stock, while his mother, Romula, was from beyond the Danube. Galerius was born in Dacia Ripensis near Sardica. Although the date of his birth is unknown, he was probably born ca. 250 since he served under Aurelian. As a youth Galerius was a shepherd and acquired the nickname Armentarius. Although he seems to have started his military career under Aurelian and Probus, nothing is known about it before his accession as Caesar on 1 March 293. He served as Diocletian's Caesar in the East. Abandoning his first wife, he married Diocletian's daugher, Valeria.

As Caesar he campaigned in Egypt in 294; he seems to have taken to the field against Narses of Persia, and was defeated near Ctesiphon in 295. In 298, after he made inroads into Armenia, he obtained a treaty from the Persians favorable to the Romans. Between 299-305 he overcame the Sarmatians and the Carpi along the Danube. The Great Persecution of the Orthodox Church, which was started in 303 by the Emperor Diocletian, was probably instigated by Galerius. Because of the almost fatal illness that he contracted toward the end of 304, Diocletian, at Nicomedeia, and Maximianus Herculius, at Mediolanum, divested themselves of the purple on 1 May 305. Constantius and Galerius were appointed as Augusti, with Maximinus Daia and Severus as the new Caesars. Constantius and Severus reigned in the West, whereas Galerius' and Daia's realm was the East. Although Constantius was nominally senior Augustus, the real power was in the hands of Galerius because both Caesars were his creatures.

The balance of power shifted at the end of July 306 when Constantius, with his son Constantine at his side, passed away at York in Britain where he was preparing to face incursions by the Picts; his army proclaimed Constantine his successor immediately. As soon as he received the news of the death of Constantius I and the acclamation of Constantine to the purple, Galerius raised Severus to the rank of Augustus to replace his dead colleague in August 306. Making the best of a bad situation, Galerius accepted Constantine as the new Caesar in the West. The situation became more complicated when Maxentius, with his father Maximianus Herculius acquiesing, declared himself princes on 28 October 306. When Galerius learned about the acclamation of the usurper, he dispatched the Emperor Severus to put down the rebellion. Severus took a large field army which had formerly been that of Maximianus and proceeded toward Rome and began to besiege the city, Maxentius, however, and Maximianus, by means of a ruse, convinced Severus to surrender. Later, in 307, Severus was put to death under clouded circumstances. While Severus was fighting in the west, Galerius, during late 306 or early 307, was campaigning against the Sarmatians.

In the early summer of 307 Galerius invaded Italy to avenge Severus's death; he advanced to the south and encamped at Interamna near the Tiber. His attempt to besiege the city was abortive because his army was too small to encompass the city's fortifications. Not trusting his own troops, Galerius withdrew. During its retreat, his army ravaged the Italian countryside as it was returning to its original base. When Maximianus Herculius' attempts to regain the throne between 308 and 310 by pushing his son off his throne or by winning over Constantine to his cause failed, he tried to win Diocletian and Galerius over to his side at Carnuntum in October and November 308; the outcome of the Conference at Carnuntum was that Licinius was appointed Augustus in Severus's place, that Daia and Constantine were denoted filii Augustorum, and that Herculius was completely cut out of the picture. Later, in 310, Herculius died, having been implicated in a plot against his son-in-law. After the Conference at Carnuntum, Galerius returned to Sardica where he died in the opening days of May 311.

By Michael DiMaio, Jr., Salve Regina University; Published: De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families http://www.roman-emperors.org/startup.htm. Used by permission.

Galerius was Caesar and tetrarch under Maximianus. Although a talented general and administrator, Galerius is better known for his key role in the "Great Persecution" of Christians. He stopped the persecution under condition the Christians pray for his return to health from a serious illness. Galerius died horribly shortly after. Joseph Sermarini, FORVM.

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.



Cleisthenes
faustinaI as2.jpg
138-161 AD - FAUSTINA Senior AE as - struck 148-161 AD31 viewsobv: DIVA FAVSTINA (draped bust right)
rev: AETERNITAS / S.C. (Aeternitas seated left holding phoenix on globe & scepter)
ref: RIC III 1156 (Ant.Pius), C.16 (2frcs)
8.10gms, 25mm,
berserker
faustinaI as.jpg
138-161 AD - FAUSTINA Senior AE dupondius - struck after 141 AD35 viewsobv: DIVA FAVSTINA (a) (diademed & draped bust right)
rev: AVGVSTA / S.C. (Ceres standing left holding corn ears & torch)
ref: RIC III 1169 (Ant.Pius), C.80 (2frcs)
12.33gms, 25mm,
berserker
faustina_I_RIC327.jpg
138-161 AD - FAUSTINA Senior AR denarius - struck 138-139 AD42 viewsobv: FAVSTINA AVG ANTONINI AVG P P (draped bust right, hair elaborately waved in several loops round head and then drawn up and coiled on top)
rev: CONCORDIA AVG (Concordia seated left holding patera & resting arm on cornucopiae)
ref: RIC III 327 (S) (AntPius), RSC 146v (6frcs), BMC 41
3.3gms, 19mm
Scarce

Coins of Faustina Senior struck during her lifetime are much rarer than the later DIVA issues struck in commemoration of her.
berserker
faustina_I_RIC343.jpg
138-161 AD - FAUSTINA Senior AR denarius - struck 150 AD41 viewsobv: DIVA FAVSTINA (draped bust right)
rev: AED DIV FAVSTINAE (front view of temple of six columns on five steps, fencing before, statue of Faustina within)
ref: RIC III 343 (S) (AntPius), RSC 1 (10frcs), BMC 339
3.34gms, 18mm,
Scarce

This coin represents the aedes, or templum, with which, after her death, the elder Faustina was honoured by Antoninus Pius. According to Capitolinus, it was situated in the Via Sacra, and was at first dedicated to Faustina alone. But, after the decease of the husband, religious rites were paid therein to him also. A nice coin with an image of a building which still stands today in Rome.
berserker
faustina1 RIC384.jpg
138-161 AD - FAUSTINA Senior AR denarius - struck after 141 AD40 viewsobv: DIVA FAVSTINA (draped bust right)
rev: CONSECRATIO (peacock walking right, head left)
ref: RIC III 384 (AntPius), RSC 175, BMC 473
3.20gms, 17mm,
berserker
faustina1 RIC374.jpg
138-161 AD - FAUSTINA Senior AR denarius - struck after 141 AD66 viewsobv: DIVA FAVSTINA (diademed & draped bust right)
rev: AVGVSTA (Pietas standing left with raised hand, altar at foot left)
ref: RIC III 374 (Ant.Pius), RSC 124 (2frcs)
3.23gms, 17mm,
Scarce
berserker
faustina1 RIC350.jpg
138-161 AD - FAUSTINA Senior AR denarius - struck after 141 AD38 viewsobv: DIVA FAVSTINA (veiled & draped bust right)
rev: AETERNITAS (Aeternitas standing left, holding globe and scepter)
ref: RIC III 350 (AntPius), C.32 (2frcs)
3.03gms, 17mm,
Scarce

The veiled bust is scarcer.
berserker
faustina1 RIC344.jpg
138-161 AD - FAUSTINA Senior AR denarius - struck after 141 AD27 viewsobv: DIVA FAVSTINA (draped bust right)
rev: AETERNITAS (Juno standing left, hand raised, holding scepter)
ref: RIC III 344 (AntPius), RSC 26 (12frcs), BMC 345
3,26gms, 17mm,
berserker
faustinaI sest.jpg
138-161 AD - FAVSTINA Senior AE sestertius - struck after 141 AD64 viewsbv: DIVA FAVSTINA (diademed & draped bust right)
rev: - / S.C. (Vesta standing left, holding long torch & palladium {Pallas statue})
ref: RIC III 1151(AntPius) (S), C.268 (6fr.)
23.51gms, 30mm,

I think it's a rare piece.
SOLD
2 commentsberserker
RI_141br_img.jpg
141 - Diocletian - Follis - RIC VI Trier 677a (corr. Cyzicus)69 viewsObv:– D N DIOCLETIANO FELICISSIMO SEN AVG, laureate bust right in imperial mantle, olive branch in right hand, mappa in left
Rev:– PROVIDENTIA DEORVM QVIES AVGG, Providentia standing right, extending right hand to Quies standing left, branch upward in right hand, vertical sceptre in left
Minted in Cyzicus (not Trier) ( S | F / KS //PTR)
Reference:– RIC VI Trier 677a (R) (see notes)
Notes:- This is perhaps one of the most unusual issues in the entire follis series. It is nearly always attributed to Trier (Treveri), but a comparison of portrait styles and an examination of follis hoards reveals that this issue was not struck in Trier but in Cyzicus. Two officinae struck this issue, and the KS in the field between the two figures is actually the mintmark, not the PTR. A look at the coins of Cyzicus (RIC 22-23) shows that the same two officinae struck this issue without the PTR also. The Senior Augustus issues of Diocletian and Maximianus were struck at every mint currently in operation. Apparently, the first coins of this type were prepared at Trier and examples were sent to the various mints for the individual mints to copy. At Cyzicus, the die engravers copied everything, including the Trier mintmark and put their own mintmark in the field. Eventually someone soon realized the mistake and new dies were prepared with the mintmark in its proper location.

Nicely silvered with little / no visible wear.
maridvnvm
RI 141v img.jpg
141 - Diocletian - RIC VI Rome 116a (Post Abdication - Senior Augustus)37 viewsObv:– DN DIOCLETIANO BEATISS SEN AVG, Laureate bust right, wearing imperial mantle, holding olive branch in right hand and mappa in left
Rev:– PROVIDENT DEOR QVIES AVGG, Providentia standing right, extending right hand to Quies, standing left holding branch in right hand and leaning on scepter in left hand
Minted in Rome (S in left field, F in right field, RP in exe) c. A.D. 305
References:– RIC VI Rome 116a (R)
maridvnvm
RI 146ag img.jpg
146 - Maximianus - RIC VI Lugdunum 234 (Senior Augustus)15 viewsObv:– DN MAXIMIANO P F S AVG, Laureate, cuirassed bust right
Rev:– GENIO POP ROM, Genius standing left, modius on head, loins draped, right hand holding patera, left hand holding cornucopiae
Minted in Lugdunum (N in right field, PLG in exe). November to December A.D. 307
Reference:– RIC VI Lugdunum 234 (S) Bastien Volume XI 427 (5 examples)
maridvnvm
RI 146u img.jpg
146 - Maximianus - RIC VI Lugdunum 253 (Senior Augustus)21 viewsObv:– IMP C VAL MAXIMIANVS P F AVG, Laureate, cuirassed bust right
Rev:– GENIO POP ROM, Genius standing left, modius on head, loins draped, right hand holding patera, left hand holding cornucopiae, altar to left
Minted in Lugdunum (// PLC). Autumn A.D. 307 to Summer A.D. 308
Reference:– RIC VI Lugdunum 253 (S) Bastien Volume X1 468
maridvnvm
RI 146bu img.jpg
146 - Maximianus - RIC VI Lugdunum 288 (Senior Augustus) 8 viewsObv:– IMP C VAL MAXIMIANVS P F AVG, Laureate, cuirassed bust right
Rev:– GENIO POP ROM, Genius standing left, modius on head, loins draped, right hand holding patera, left hand holding cornucopiae
Minted in Lugdunum (CI in left field, H over S in right field, PLC in exe).
Reference:– RIC VI Lugdunum 288
maridvnvm
RI_146df_img.jpg
146 - Maximianus - RIC VI Lugdunum 288 (Senior Augustus)23 viewsObv:– IMP C VAL MAXIMIANVS P F AVG, Laureate, cuirassed bust right
Rev:– GENIO POP ROM, Genius standing left, modius on head, loins draped, right hand holding patera, left hand holding cornucopiae
Minted in Lugdunum (CI in left field, H over S in right field, PLC in exe).
Reference:– RIC VI Lugdunum 288
1 commentsmaridvnvm
Theo1Ae3Ant.jpeg
1505b, Theodosius I, 19 January 379 - 17 January 395 A.D. (Antioch)67 viewsTheodosius I, 19 January 379 - 17 January 395 A.D. Bronze AE 3, RIC 44(b), VF, Antioch, 2.17g, 18.1mm, 180o, 9 Aug 378 - 25 Aug 383 A.D. Obverse: D N THEODOSIVS P F AVG, rosette-diademed, draped and cuirassed bust right; Reverse: CONCORDIA AVGGG, Constantinopolis enthroned facing, r. foot on prow, globe in l., scepter in r., Q and F at sides, ANTG in ex; scarce.


De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families

THEODOSIUS I (379-395 A.D.)
David Woods
University College of Cork


Origin and Early Career
Flavius Theodosius was born at Cauca in Spain in about 346 to Thermantia and Theodosius the Elder (so-called to distinguish him from his son). Theodosius the Elder was a senior military officer serving in the Western empire and rose to become the magister equitum praesentalis under the emperor Valentinian I from late 368 until his execution in early 375. As the son of a soldier, Theodosius was legally obliged to enter upon a military career. He seems to have served under his father during his expedition to Britain in 367/8, and was the dux Moesiae Primae by late 374. Unfortunately, great controversy surrounds the rest of his career until Gratian had him hailed as his imperial colleague in succession to the emperor Valens at Sirmium on 19 January 379. It is clear that he was forced to retire home to Spain only to be recalled to active service shortly thereafter, but the circumstances of his forced retirement are shrouded in mystery. His father was executed at roughly the same time, and much speculation has centred on the relationship between these events.

[For a very detailed and interesting discussion of the Foreign Policy of Theodosius and the Civil Wars that plagued his reign, please see http://www.roman-emperors.org/theo1.htm]

Family and Succession
Theodosius married twice. His first wife was the Spanish Aelia Flavia Flaccilla. She bore him Arcadius ca. 377, Honorius on 9 September 384, and Pulcheria ca. 385. Theodosius honoured her with the title of Augusta shortly after his accession, but she died in 386. In late 387 he married Galla, daughter of Valentinian I and full-sister of Valentinian II. She bore him Gratian ca. 388, Galla Placidia ca. 388/390, and died in childbirth in 394, together with her new-born son John. Of his two sons who survived infancy, he appointed Arcadius as Augustus on 19 January 383 and Honorius as Augustus on 23 January 393. His promotion of Arcadius as a full Augustus at an unusually young age points to his determination right from the start that one of his own sons should succeed him. He sought to strengthen Arcadius' position in particular by means of a series of strategic marriages whose purpose was to tie his leading "generals" irrevocably to his dynasty. Hence he married his niece and adoptive daughter Serena to his magister militum per Orientem Stilicho in 387, her elder sister Thermantia to a "general" whose name has not been preserved, and ca. 387 his nephew-in-law Nebridius to Salvina, daughter of the comes Africae Gildo. By the time of his death by illness on 17 January 395, Theodosius had promoted Stilicho from his position as one of the two comites domesticorum under his own eastern administration to that of magister peditum praesentalis in a western administration, in an entirely traditional manner, under his younger son Honorius. Although Stilicho managed to increase the power of the magister peditum praesentalis to the disadvantage of his colleague the magister equitum praesentalis and claimed that Theodosius had appointed him as guardian for both his sons, this tells us more about his cunning and ambition than it does about Theodosius' constitutional arrangements.

Theodosius' importance rests on the fact that he founded a dynasty which continued in power until the death of his grandson Theodosius II in 450. This ensured a continuity of policy which saw the emergence of Nicene Christianity as the orthodox belief of the vast majority of Christians throughout the middle ages. It also ensured the essential destruction of paganism and the emergence of Christianity as the religion of the state, even if the individual steps in this process can be difficult to identify. On the negative side, however, he allowed his dynastic interests and ambitions to lead him into two unnecessary and bloody civil wars which severely weakened the empire's ability to defend itself in the face of continued barbarian pressure upon its frontiers. In this manner, he put the interests of his family before those of the wider Roman population and was responsible, in many ways, for the phenomenon to which we now refer as the fall of the western Roman empire.


Copyright (C) 1998, David Woods.
Published: De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families http://www.roman-emperors.org/startup.htm. Used by permission.

There is a nice segue here, as we pick-up John Julius Norwich's summation of the reign of Theodosius, "Readers of this brief account of his career may well find themselves wondering, not so much whether he deserved the title of 'the Great' as how he ever came to acquire it in the first place. If so, however, they may also like to ask themselves another question: what would have been the fate of the Empire if, at that critical moment in its history after the battle of Adrianople, young Gratian had not called him from his Spanish estates and put the future of the East into his hands? . . . the probability is that the whole Empire of the East would have been lost, swallowed up in a revived Gothic kingdom, with effects on world history that defy speculation.

In his civil legislation he showed, again and again, a consideration for the humblest of his subjects that was rare indeed among rulers of the fourth century. What other prince would have decreed that any criminal, sentenced to execution, imprisonment or exile, must first be allowed thirty days' grace to put his affairs in order? Or that a specified part of his worldly goods must go to his children, upon whom their father's crimes must on no account be visited? Or that no farmer should be obliged to sell his produce to the State at a price lower than he would receive on the open market?

Had he earned his title? Not, perhaps, in the way that Constantine had done or as Justinian was to do. But, if not ultimately great himself, he had surely come very close to greatness; and had he reigned as long as they did his achievements might well have equalled theirs. He might even have saved the Western Empire. One thing only is certain: it would be nearly a century and a half before the Romans would look upon his like again" (Norwich, John Julius. Byzantium, the Early Centuries. London: Penguin Group, 1990. 116-7;118).

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.



Cleisthenes
Theod1GlrMan.jpg
1505c, Theodosius I, 379 - 395 A.D. (Constantinople)77 viewsTheodosius I (379 - 395 AD) AE3. 388-394 AD, RIC IX 27(a)3, Third Officina. Seventh Period. 20.27 mm. 4.8gm. Near VF with black and earthen patina. Constantinople. Obverse: DN THEODO-SIANVS P F AVG, pearl-diademed, draped, & cuirassed bust right; Reverse: GLORIA-ROMANORVM, Theodosius I standing, facing, holding labarum and globe, CONSB in exergue (scarcer reverse). A Spanish find.



De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families

THEODOSIUS I (379-395 A.D.)
David Woods
University College of Cork


Origin and Early Career
Flavius Theodosius was born at Cauca in Spain in about 346 to Thermantia and Theodosius the Elder (so-called to distinguish him from his son). Theodosius the Elder was a senior military officer serving in the Western empire and rose to become the magister equitum praesentalis under the emperor Valentinian I from late 368 until his execution in early 375. As the son of a soldier, Theodosius was legally obliged to enter upon a military career. He seems to have served under his father during his expedition to Britain in 367/8, and was the dux Moesiae Primae by late 374. Unfortunately, great controversy surrounds the rest of his career until Gratian had him hailed as his imperial colleague in succession to the emperor Valens at Sirmium on 19 January 379. It is clear that he was forced to retire home to Spain only to be recalled to active service shortly thereafter, but the circumstances of his forced retirement are shrouded in mystery. His father was executed at roughly the same time, and much speculation has centred on the relationship between these events.

[For a very detailed and interesting discussion of the Foreign Policy of Theodosius and the Civil Wars that plagued his reign, please see http://www.roman-emperors.org/theo1.htm]

Family and Succession
Theodosius married twice. His first wife was the Spanish Aelia Flavia Flaccilla. She bore him Arcadius ca. 377, Honorius on 9 September 384, and Pulcheria ca. 385. Theodosius honoured her with the title of Augusta shortly after his accession, but she died in 386. In late 387 he married Galla, daughter of Valentinian I and full-sister of Valentinian II. She bore him Gratian ca. 388, Galla Placidia ca. 388/390, and died in childbirth in 394, together with her new-born son John. Of his two sons who survived infancy, he appointed Arcadius as Augustus on 19 January 383 and Honorius as Augustus on 23 January 393. His promotion of Arcadius as a full Augustus at an unusually young age points to his determination right from the start that one of his own sons should succeed him. He sought to strengthen Arcadius' position in particular by means of a series of strategic marriages whose purpose was to tie his leading "generals" irrevocably to his dynasty. Hence he married his niece and adoptive daughter Serena to his magister militum per Orientem Stilicho in 387, her elder sister Thermantia to a "general" whose name has not been preserved, and ca. 387 his nephew-in-law Nebridius to Salvina, daughter of the comes Africae Gildo. By the time of his death by illness on 17 January 395, Theodosius had promoted Stilicho from his position as one of the two comites domesticorum under his own eastern administration to that of magister peditum praesentalis in a western administration, in an entirely traditional manner, under his younger son Honorius. Although Stilicho managed to increase the power of the magister peditum praesentalis to the disadvantage of his colleague the magister equitum praesentalis and claimed that Theodosius had appointed him as guardian for both his sons, this tells us more about his cunning and ambition than it does about Theodosius' constitutional arrangements.

Theodosius' importance rests on the fact that he founded a dynasty which continued in power until the death of his grandson Theodosius II in 450. This ensured a continuity of policy which saw the emergence of Nicene Christianity as the orthodox belief of the vast majority of Christians throughout the middle ages. It also ensured the essential destruction of paganism and the emergence of Christianity as the religion of the state, even if the individual steps in this process can be difficult to identify. On the negative side, however, he allowed his dynastic interests and ambitions to lead him into two unnecessary and bloody civil wars which severely weakened the empire's ability to defend itself in the face of continued barbarian pressure upon its frontiers. In this manner, he put the interests of his family before those of the wider Roman population and was responsible, in many ways, for the phenomenon to which we now refer as the fall of the western Roman empire.


Copyright (C) 1998, David Woods.
Published: De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families http://www.roman-emperors.org/startup.htm. Used by permission.

There is a nice segue here, as we pick-up John Julius Norwich's summation of the reign of Theodosius, "Readers of this brief account of his career may well find themselves wondering, not so much whether he deserved the title of 'the Great' as how he ever came to acquire it in the first place. If so, however, they may also like to ask themselves another question: what would have been the fate of the Empire if, at that critical moment in its history after the battle of Adrianople, young Gratian had not called him from his Spanish estates and put the future of the East into his hands? . . . the probability is that the whole Empire of the East would have been lost, swallowed up in a revived Gothic kingdom, with effects on world history that defy speculation.

In his civil legislation he showed, again and again, a consideration for the humblest of his subjects that was rare indeed among rulers of the fourth century. What other prince would have decreed that any criminal, sentenced to execution, imprisonment or exile, must first be allowed thirty days' grace to put his affairs in order? Or that a specified part of his worldly goods must go to his children, upon whom their father's crimes must on no account be visited? Or that no farmer should be obliged to sell his produce to the State at a price lower than he would receive on the open market?

Had he earned his title? Not, perhaps, in the way that Constantine had done or as Justinian was to do. But, if not ultimately great himself, he had surely come very close to greatness; and had he reigned as long as they did his achievements might well have equalled theirs. He might even have saved the Western Empire. One thing only is certain: it would be nearly a century and a half before the Romans would look upon his like again" (Norwich, John Julius. Byzantium, the Early Centuries. London: Penguin Group, 1990. 116-7;118).

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.
Cleisthenes
023~0.JPG
151 Faustina38 viewsDiva Faustina Senior Æ Sestertius. DIVA FAVSTINA, draped bust right / AVGVSTA S-C, Pietas standing left, sacrificing from raised hand over flaming altar at feet left, & holding box of incense. RIC III 1127, Cohen 125

2 commentsRandygeki(h2)
1813_FLINT_LEAD_WORKS_PENNY.JPG
1813 AE Penny Token. Flint, Flintshire.22 viewsObverse: FLINT LEAD WORKS. View of the lead works, smoking away in full production; 1813 below in exergue.
Reverse: ONE POUND NOTE FOR 240 TOKENS • around ONE PENNY TOKEN in centre.
Edge: Centre Grained.
Diameter 34mm | Die Axis 6
Withers: 1313 | Davis: 12
SCARCE

The dies for this token were engraved by Thomas Halliday. The manufacturer of the token is unknown but it would in all probability have been struck in Birmingham. It was issued by George Roskell at the Flint Lead Works in Flintshire.

The Flint Lead Smelting Works was the only issuer of tokens in North Wales in the 19th century. The company produced lead from ore obtained from mines on the nearby Halkyn mountain. George Roskell (1777-1847) of Garstang, Lancashire, came to Flintshire as a shareholder in the Milwr Mine, and later became the senior partner in the Flint Smelting Works. In 1805, he married Mary Ann, only child of James Potts of Stokyn, near Holywell. His eldest son, George Potts Roskell succeeded to the Stokyn estate. In 1852 the Flint Lead Works became absorbed in the more extensive Alkali Works of Muspratt Bros. and Huntley, which by 1885 was one of the largest chemical works in Britain.

The town of Flint has its origins in the turbulent times of Edward I in the13th century when he invaded Wales for the complete subjugation of the Welsh princes and the people of Wales. Edward I picked the only suitable spot on the marshy shore, where an outcrop of rock jutted out some fifty yards into the river, on which to build the castle and town of Flint. The castle was built on the rock and joined by a drawbridge to the town. The town was built in the form of a Roman encampment, with a double ditch and earthen banks crowned by timber ramparts and four regular gates.
*Alex
RIC_438_Denario_Antonino_Pio.jpg
31-08a - ANTONINO PIO (138 - 161 D.C)19 viewsAcuñación realizada por Marco Aurelio y Lucio Vero en honor de Antonino Pío Divo.
Ar denario 19 mm 3.1 gr.

Anv: "DIVUS ANTONINVS” – Cabeza desnuda viendo a derecha, con ropajes en su hombro izquierdo.
Rev: "CONSECRATIO" – Crematorium piramidal de 4 pisos, con la base enguirnaldada, la puerta en segundo nivel, el ápice coronado por una cuadriga vista de frente.
El Crematorium construido por Antonino Pio ya había aparecido dos décadas antes en la acuñación póstuma de su esposa, Faustina Senior. Sus restos se han descubierto cerca de la Plaza Montecitorio, el oeste del corso, en Regio IX. La estructura similar mostrada en el 169 D.C. y 176 D.C. en la acuñación de Divo Lucio Vero y Diva Faustina Junior puede representar este mismo edificio, aunque más probablemente parece que estos reversos representarían el Crematorium de Marco Aurelio que aparecería más tarde en su propia acuñación póstuma emitida por Commodo (Sear).

Ceca: Roma - Italia
Acuñada: 161 D.C.
Rareza: Común

Referencias: RIC Vol.III #438 Pag.247 - DVM #135 Pag.141 - Sear RCTV Vol.II #5193 Pag.335 – BMCRE IV #60/3 Pag.394 –RSC Vol. II #164ª Pag.171 - Cohen Vol.II #164 var. Pag.288 – MIR Vol.18 #27
mdelvalle
Denario_Antonino_Pio_RIC_438.jpg
31-09 – ANTONINO PIO (138 – 161 D.C)69 viewsAcuñación realizada por Marco Aurelio y Lucio Vero en honor de Antonino Pío Divo.
Ar denario 19 mm 3.1 gr.

Anv: "DIVUS ANTONINVS” – Cabeza desnuda viendo a derecha, con ropajes en su hombro izquierdo.
Rev: "CONSECRATIO" – Crematorium piramidal de 4 pisos, con la base enguirnaldada, la puerta en segundo nivel, el ápice coronado por una cuadriga vista de frente.
El Crematorium construido por Antonino Pio ya había aparecido dos décadas antes en la acuñación póstuma de su esposa, Faustina Senior. Sus restos se han descubierto cerca de la Plaza Montecitorio, el oeste del corso, en Regio IX. La estructura similar mostrada en el 169 D.C. y 176 D.C. en la acuñación de Divo Lucio Vero y Diva Faustina Junior puede representar este mismo edificio, aunque más probablemente parece que estos reversos representarían el Crematorium de Marco Aurelio que aparecería más tarde en su propia acuñación póstuma emitida por Commodo (Sear).

Ceca: Roma - Italia
Acuñada: 161 D.C.
Rareza: Común

Referencias: RIC Vol.III #438 Pag.247 - DVM #135 Pag.141 - Sear RCTV Vol.II #5193 Pag.335 – BMCRE Vol.4 #60 –RSC Vol. II #164ª Pag.171 - Cohen Vol.II #164 var. Pag.288 – MIR Vol.18 #27
1 commentsmdelvalle
Denario FAUSTINA RIC 344.jpg
32-05 - FAUSTINA MADRE (138 - 141 D.C.)33 viewsAR Denario 18 x 16 mm 2.8 gr.

Anv: "DIVA FAVSTINA" - Busto vestido viendo a derecha.
Rev: "AETERNITAS" - Juno (?) / Aeternitas (La eternidad) de pié de frente viendo a izquierda, levantando su mano derecha y portando largo cetro vertical en izquierda.

Acuñada 141 - 161 D.C.
Ceca: Roma

Referencias: RIC Vol.III #344D Pag.69 - Sear RCTV Vol.II #4574 Pag.268 - BMCRE #345 - Cohen Vol.II #26 Pag.415 - DVM #4/3 Pag.142 - St. Vol.III #448 - RSC Vol. II #26 Pag.191
mdelvalle
RIC_344d_Denario_Faustina_I.jpg
32-05 - FAUSTINA MADRE (138 - 141 D.C.)10 viewsAR Denario 18 x 16 mm 2.8 gr.

Anv: "DIVA FAVSTINA" - Busto vestido viendo a derecha.
Rev: "AETERNITAS" - Juno (?) / Aeternitas (La eternidad) de pié de frente viendo a izquierda, levantando su mano derecha y portando largo cetro vertical en izquierda.

Acuñada 141 - 161 D.C.
Ceca: Roma

Referencias: RIC Vol.III #344D Pag.69 - Sear RCTV Vol.II #4574 Pag.268 - BMCRE IV #351 Pag.53 - Cohen Vol.II #26 Pag.415 - DVM #4/3 Pag.142 - St. Vol.III #448 - RSC Vol. II #26 Pag.191
mdelvalle
Denario FAUSTINA RIC 351.jpg
32-07 - FAUSTINA MADRE (138 - 141 D.C.)38 viewsAR Denario 18 x 16 mm 3.3 gr.

Anv: "DIVA FAVSTINA" - Busto vestido viendo a derecha.
Rev: "AETERNITAS" - Providencia/eternitas/Ucrania (?Cohen) de pié de frente viendo a izquierda, sosteniendo un globo en mano derecha y con la izquierda sostiene su velo que vuela sobre y detrás de su cabeza.

Acuñada 141 - 161 D.C.
Ceca: Roma

Referencias: RIC Vol.III #351 Pag.70 - Sear RCTV Vol.II #4578 Pag.268 - BMCRE #373 - Cohen Vol.II #32 Pag.415 - St. Vol.III #447 - RSC Vol. II #33 Pag.192
mdelvalle
RIC_351_Denario_Faustina_I.jpg
32-07 - FAUSTINA MADRE (138 - 141 D.C.)14 viewsAR Denario 18 x 16 mm 3.3 gr.

Anv: "DIVA FAVSTINA" - Busto vestido viendo a derecha.
Rev: "AETERNITAS" - Providencia/eternitas/Ucrania (?Cohen) de pié de frente viendo a izquierda, sosteniendo un globo en mano derecha y con la izquierda sostiene su velo que vuela sobre y detrás de su cabeza.

Acuñada 141 - 161 D.C.
Ceca: Roma

Referencias: RIC Vol.III #351 Pag.70 - Sear RCTV Vol.II #4578 Pag.268 - BMCRE IV #375 Pag.56 - Cohen Vol.II #32 Pag.415 - St. Vol.III #447 - RSC Vol. II #33 Pag.192
mdelvalle
Denario FAUSTINA RIC 394.jpg
32-09 - FAUSTINA MADRE (138 - 141 D.C.)40 viewsAR Denario 17 mm 3.2 gr.

Anv: "DIVA AVG FAVSTINA" - Busto vestido viendo a derecha.
Rev: "PIETAS AVG" - Pietas (La piedad) velada de pié a izquierda dejando caer incienso sobre un altar con mano derecha y sosteniendo una botellita de perfume ó cajita en mano izquierda.

Acuñada 141 - 161 D.C.
Ceca: Roma

Referencias: RIC Vol.III #394a Pag.74 - Sear RCTV Vol.II #4598 Pag.270 - BMCRE #311 - Cohen Vol.II #234 Pag.431 - St. Vol.III #428 - RSC Vol. II #234 Pag.196
mdelvalle
RIC_394a_Denario_Faustina_I.jpg
32-09 - FAUSTINA MADRE (138 - 141 D.C.)8 viewsAR Denario 17 mm 3.2 gr.

Anv: "DIVA AVG FAVSTINA" - Busto vestido viendo a derecha.
Rev: "PIETAS AVG" - Pietas (La piedad) velada de pié a izquierda dejando caer incienso sobre un altar con mano derecha y sosteniendo una botellita de perfume ó cajita en mano izquierda.

Acuñada 141 - 161 D.C.
Ceca: Roma

Referencias: RIC Vol.III #394a Pag.74 - Sear RCTV Vol.II #4598 Pag.270 - BMCRE IV #313 Pag.46 - Cohen Vol.II #234 Pag.431 - St. Vol.III #428 - RSC Vol. II #234 Pag.196
mdelvalle
AS FAUSTINA RIC 1161.jpg
32-12 - FAUSTINA MADRE (138 - 141 D.C.)42 viewsAE AS ó Dupondio 24 x 26 mm 9.7 gr.
Según cuál sea el material en que fué acuñada Cobre u oricalco (metal amarillo)

Anv: "DIVA FAVSTINA" - Busto laureado viendo a derecha.
Rev: "AETERNITAS - S C" - Pietas (La piedad) velada de pié a izquierda levantando su mano derecha sobre un altar y sosteniendo una caja de incienso o botellita de perfume en mano izquierda.

Acuñada 141 - 161 D.C.
Ceca: Roma

Referencias: RIC Vol.III #1161 Pag.166 - Sear RCTV Vol.II #4641 Pag.275 - BMCRE #1558 - Cohen Vol.II #43 Pag.416
mdelvalle
RIC_1161_AS_Faustina_I.jpg
32-12 - FAUSTINA MADRE (138 - 141 D.C.)13 viewsAE AS ó Dupondio 24 x 26 mm 9.7 gr.
Según cuál sea el material en que fué acuñada Cobre u oricalco (metal amarillo)

Anv: "DIVA FAVSTINA" - Busto laureado viendo a derecha.
Rev: "AETERNITAS - S C" - Pietas (La piedad) velada de pié a izquierda levantando su mano derecha sobre un altar y sosteniendo una caja de incienso o botellita de perfume en mano izquierda.

Acuñada 141 - 161 D.C.
Ceca: Roma

Referencias: RIC Vol.III #1161 Pag.166 - Sear RCTV Vol.II #4641 Pag.275 - BMCRE IV #1558 Pag.249 (Plate 37 #10) - Cohen Vol.II #43 Pag.416
mdelvalle
AS FAUSTINA RIC 1179.jpg
32-14 - FAUSTINA MADRE (138 - 141 D.C.)28 viewsAE AS 23 x 25 mm 10.5 gr.

Anv: "DIVA [F]AVSTINA" - Busto vestido viendo a derecha.
Rev: "AVGVST[A] - S [C]" - Vesta de pié a izquierda sosteniendo Victoriola (Palladium) en mano derecha y largo cetro vertical con izquierda.

Acuñada 141 - 161 D.C.
Ceca: Roma

Referencias: RIC Vol.III #1179 Pag.168 - Sear RCTV Vol.II #4648 var Pag.276 - BMCRE #1582 - Cohen Vol.II #123 Pag.422
mdelvalle
RIC_1179_AS_Faustina_I.jpg
32-14 - FAUSTINA MADRE (138 - 141 D.C.)14 viewsAE AS 23 x 25 mm 10.5 gr.

Anv: "DIVA [F]AVSTINA" - Busto vestido viendo a derecha.
Rev: "AVGVST[A] - S [C]" - Vesta de pié a izquierda sosteniendo Victoriola (Palladium) en mano derecha y largo cetro vertical con izquierda.

Acuñada 141 - 161 D.C.
Ceca: Roma

Referencias: RIC Vol.III #1179 Pag.168 - Sear RCTV Vol.II #4648 var Pag.276 - BMCRE IV #1582 Pag.253 (Plate 37 #4) - Cohen Vol.II #123 Pag.422
mdelvalle
AS FAUSTINA DVM 28.jpg
32-16 - FAUSTINA MADRE (138 - 141 D.C.)34 viewsAE AS ó Dupondio 24 mm 8.5 gr.
Según cuál sea el material en que fué acuñada Cobre u oricalco (metal amarillo)

Anv: "DIVA FAVSTIN[A]" - Busto laureado viendo a derecha.
Rev: "AVGVSTA - S C" - Aeternitas (La eternidad) o Diana (? Cohen)avanzando a izquierda, sosteniendo una antorcha corta con mano izquierda sobre su hombro y con la derecha sostiene su velo que vuela sobre y detrás de su cabeza.

Acuñada 141 - 161 D.C.
Ceca: Roma

Referencias: RIC Vol.III #1183 Pag.168 - Sear RCTV Vol.II #4650 Pag.276 - BMCRE #1587 - Cohen Vol.II #77 Pag.419/420
mdelvalle
RIC_1183_AS_Faustina_I.jpg
32-16 - FAUSTINA MADRE (138 - 141 D.C.)10 viewsAE AS ó Dupondio 24 mm 8.5 gr.
Según cuál sea el material en que fué acuñada Cobre u oricalco (metal amarillo)

Anv: "DIVA FAVSTIN[A]" - Busto laureado viendo a derecha.
Rev: "AVGVSTA - S C" - Aeternitas (La eternidad) o Diana (? Cohen) avanzando a izquierda, sosteniendo una antorcha corta con mano izquierda sobre su hombro y con la derecha sostiene su velo que vuela sobre y detrás de su cabeza.

Acuñada 141 - 161 D.C.
Ceca: Roma

Referencias: RIC Vol.III #1183 Pag.168 - Sear RCTV Vol.II #4650 Pag.276 - BMCRE IV #1587 Pag.253 (Plate 38 #4) - Cohen Vol.II #77 Pag.419/420
mdelvalle
agrippina RIC102(claudius).jpg
41-54 AD - AGRIPPINA Senior AE Sestertius - struck under Claudius (ca.42-43 AD)42 viewsobv: AGRIPPINA M F GERMANICI CAESARIS (draped bust right, hair behind in an elaborate plait)
rev: TI CLAVDIVS CAESAR AVG GERM P M TR P IMP P P around large SC
ref: RIC I 102 [Claudius], Cohen 3, BMC 219
mint: Rome
25.89gms, 35mm
Rare

Agrippina was the wife of Germanicus, and the father of six children who survived into adulthood, including the emperor Caligula. She was banished by Tiberius to the island of Pandataria, where she died of starvation in 33 AD. Her memory was honored under Caligula and Claudius.
berserker
Scipio.jpg
47-46 BC Q. Caecilius Metellus Pius Scipio67 viewsQ METEL SCIPIO IMP
head of Africa right, laur. and clad in elephant's skin, corn-ear before, plough below

EPPIVS LEG F C

Naked Hercules standing facing right, hand on hip resting on club set on rock

North Africa
47-46 BC

Sear 1380/1

Born Publius Cornelius Scipio Nasica. He was adopted by his uncle by marriage and father's second cousin Quintus Caecilius Metellus Pius. He married Aemilia Lepida, daughter of Mamercus Aemilius Lepidus Livianus (son of the Censor Marcus Livius Drusus and wife Cornelia Scipio and adopted by Mamercus Aemilius Lepidus) and wife Claudia (sister of Appius Claudius Pulcher (Senior)), and was the father in law of Pompey the Great, married to his daughter Cornelia Metella, called Quinta Pompeia for being his fifth wife.

He was Tribune in 59 BC and became Consul with Pompey the Great in 52 BC. During Caesar's civil war, he served the party of Pompey and fought against Caesar and Marcus Antonius. In 49 BC he was sent as Proconsul to Syria and the following year he took part in the Battle of Pharsalus, where he commanded the center of the Republican battleline. After Pharsalus he fled to Africa were he commanded an army with Cato the Younger, losing in the Battle of Thapsus. After the defeat he tried to escape but was cornered by the fleet of Publius Sittius when he wrecked the ship as he tried to escape to the Iberian Peninsula, to continue to fight from there. He committed suicide by stabbing himself so he would not fall at the hands of his enemies.

SOLD to Calgary Coin June 2017
1 commentsJay GT4
s54.JPG
515. Theodosius I37 viewsSon of a senior military officer, Theodosius the Elder, Theodosius accompanied his father to Britannia to help quell the Great Conspiracy in 368. He was military commander (dux) of Moesia, a Roman province on the lower Danube, in 374. However, shortly thereafter, and at about the same time as the sudden disgrace and execution of his father, Theodosius retired to Cauca. The reason for his retirement, and the relationship (if any) between it and his father's death is unclear. It is possible that he was dismissed of his command by the emperor Valentinian I, after the loss of two of Theodosius' legions by the Sarmatians in late 374.

In 378, after the death of the emperor Valens at the Battle of Adrianople, the emperor Gratian appointed Theodosius co-augustus for the East. After 392, following the death of Valentinian II, whom he had supported against a variety of usurpations, Theodosius ruled as sole emperor, defeating the usurper Eugenius on September 6, 394, at the Battle of the Frigidus.


RIC IX Constantinople 88a C
ecoli
VespasianPax_RICii10.jpg
710a, Vespasian, 1 July 69 - 24 June 79 A.D.132 viewsSilver denarius, RIC II, 10, aVF, 3.5 g, 18mm, Rome mint, 69-71 AD; Obverse: IMP CAESA[R] VESPASIANV[S AV]G - Laureate head right; Reverse: COS ITER [T]R POT - Pax seated left holding branch and caduceus. Ex Imperial Coins.


De Imperatoribus Romanis:
An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families

Titus Flavius Vespasianus (A.D. 69-79)

John Donahue
College of William and Mary

Introduction

Titus Flavius Vespasianus (b. A.D. 9, d. A.D. 79, emperor A.D. 69-79) restored peace and stability to an empire in disarray following the death of Nero in A.D. 68. In the process he established the Flavian dynasty as the legitimate successor to the Imperial throne. Although we lack many details about the events and chronology of his reign, Vespasian provided practical leadership and a return to stable government - accomplishments which, when combined with his other achievements, make his emperorship particularly notable within the history of the Principate.

Early Life and Career

Vespasian was born at Falacrina near Sabine Reate on 17 November, A.D. 9, the son of T. Flavius Sabinus, a successful tax collector and banker, and Vespasia Polla. Both parents were of equestrian status. Few details of his first fifteen years survive, yet it appears that his father and mother were often away from home on business for long periods. As a result, Vespasian's early education became the responsibility of his paternal grandmother, Tertulla. [[1]] In about A.D. 25 Vespasian assumed the toga virilis and later accepted the wearing of the latus clavus, and with it the senatorial path that his older brother, T. Flavius Sabinus, had already chosen. [[2]] Although many of the particulars are lacking, the posts typically occupied by one intent upon a senatorial career soon followed: a military tribunate in Thrace, perhaps for three or four years; a quaestorship in Crete-Cyrene; and the offices of aedile and praetor, successively, under the emperor Gaius. [[3]]

It was during this period that Vespasian married Flavia Domitilla. Daughter of a treasury clerk and former mistress of an African knight, Flavia lacked the social standing and family connections that the politically ambitious usually sought through marriage. In any case, the couple produced three children, a daughter, also named Flavia Domitilla, and two sons, the future emperors Titus and Domitian . Flavia did not live to witness her husband's emperorship and after her death Vespasian returned to his former mistress Caenis, who had been secretary to Antonia (daughter of Marc Antony and mother of Claudius). Caenis apparently exerted considerable influence over Vespasian, prompting Suetonius to assert that she remained his wife in all but name, even after he became emperor. [[4]]

Following the assassination of Gaius on 24 January, A.D. 41, Vespasian advanced rapidly, thanks in large part to the new princeps Claudius, whose favor the Flavians had wisely secured with that of Antonia, the mother of Germanicus, and of Claudius' freedmen, especially Narcissus. [[5]] The emperor soon dispatched Vespasian to Argentoratum (Strasbourg) as legatus legionis II Augustae, apparently to prepare the legion for the invasion of Britain. Vespasian first appeared at the battle of Medway in A.D. 43, and soon thereafter led his legion across the south of England, where he engaged the enemy thirty times in battle, subdued two tribes, and conquered the Isle of Wight. According to Suetonius, these operations were conducted partly under Claudius and partly under Vespasian's commander, Aulus Plautius. Vespasian's contributions, however, did not go unnoticed; he received the ornamenta triumphalia and two priesthoods from Claudius for his exploits in Britain. [[6]]

By the end of A.D. 51 Vespasian had reached the consulship, the pinnacle of a political career at Rome. For reasons that remain obscure he withdrew from political life at this point, only to return when chosen proconsul of Africa about A.D. 63-64. His subsequent administration of the province was marked by severity and parsimony, earning him a reputation for being scrupulous but unpopular. [[7]] Upon completion of his term, Vespasian returned to Rome where, as a senior senator, he became a man of influence in the emperor Nero's court. [[8]] Important enough to be included on Nero's tour of Greece in A.D. 66-67, Vespasian soon found himself in the vicinity of increasing political turbulence in the East. The situation would prove pivotal in advancing his career.

Judaea and the Accession to Power

In response to rioting in Caesarea and Jerusalem that had led to the slaughter in the latter city of Jewish leaders and Roman soldiers, Nero granted to Vespasian in A.D. 66 a special command in the East with the objective of settling the revolt in Judaea. By spring A.D. 67, with 60,000 legionaries, auxiliaries, and allies under his control, Vespasian set out to subdue Galilee and then to cut off Jerusalem. Success was quick and decisive. By October all of Galilee had been pacified and plans for the strategic encirclement of Jerusalem were soon formed. [[9]] Meanwhile, at the other end of the empire, the revolts of Gaius Iulius Vindex, governor of Gallia Lugdunensis, and Servius Sulpicius Galba , governor of Hispania Tarraconensis, had brought Nero's reign to the brink of collapse. The emperor committed suicide in June, A.D. 68, thereby ensuring chaos for the next eighteen months, as first Galba and then Marcus Salvius Otho and Aulus Vitellius acceded to power. Each lacked broad-based military and senatorial support; each would be violently deposed in turn. [[10]]

Still occupied with plans against Jerusalem, Vespasian swore allegiance to each emperor. Shortly after Vitellius assumed power in spring, A.D. 69, however, Vespasian met on the border of Judaea and Syria with Gaius Licinius Mucianus, governor of Syria, and after a series of private and public consultations, the two decided to revolt. [[11]] On July 1, at the urging of Tiberius Alexander, prefect of Egypt, the legions of Alexandria declared for Vespasian, as did the legions of Judaea two days later. By August all of Syria and the Danube legions had done likewise. Vespasian next dispatched Mucianus to Italy with 20,000 troops, while he set out from Syria to Alexandria in order to control grain shipments for the purpose of starving Italy into submission. [[12]] The siege of Jerusalem he placed in the hands of his son Titus.

Meanwhile, the Danubian legions, unwilling to wait for Mucianus' arrival, began their march against Vitellius ' forces. The latter army, suffering from a lack of discipline and training, and unaccustomed to the heat of Rome, was defeated at Cremona in late October. [[13]] By mid-December the Flavian forces had reached Carsulae, 95 kilometers north of Rome on the Flaminian Road, where the Vitellians, with no further hope of reinforcements, soon surrendered. At Rome, unable to persuade his followers to accept terms for his abdication, Vitellius was in peril. On the morning of December 20 the Flavian army entered Rome. By that afternoon, the emperor was dead. [[14]]

Tacitus records that by December 22, A.D. 69, Vespasian had been given all the honors and privileges usually granted to emperors. Even so, the issue remains unclear, owing largely to a surviving fragment of an enabling law, the lex de imperio Vespasiani, which conferred powers, privileges, and exemptions, most with Julio-Claudian precedents, on the new emperor. Whether the fragment represents a typical granting of imperial powers that has uniquely survived in Vespasian's case, or is an attempt to limit or expand such powers, remains difficult to know. In any case, the lex sanctioned all that Vespasian had done up to its passing and gave him authority to act as he saw fit on behalf of the Roman people. [[15]]

What does seem clear is that Vespasian felt the need to legitimize his new reign with vigor. He zealously publicized the number of divine omens that predicted his accession and at every opportunity he accumulated multiple consulships and imperial salutations. He also actively promoted the principle of dynastic succession, insisting that the emperorship would fall to his son. The initiative was fulfilled when Titus succeeded his father in A.D. 79.[[16]]

Emperorship

Upon his arrival in Rome in late summer, A.D. 70, Vespasian faced the daunting task of restoring a city and a government ravaged by the recent civil wars. Although many particulars are missing, a portrait nevertheles emerges of a ruler conscientiously committed to the methodical renewal of both city and empire. Concerning Rome itself, the emperor encouraged rebuilding on vacated lots, restored the Capitol (burned in A.D. 69), and also began work on several new buildings: a temple to the deified Claudius on the Caelian Hill, a project designed to identify Vespasian as a legitimate heir to the Julio-Claudians, while distancing himself from Nero ; a temple of Peace near the Forum; and the magnificent Colosseum (Flavian Amphitheatre), located on the site of the lake of Nero 's Golden House. [[17]]

Claiming that he needed forty thousand million sesterces for these projects and for others aimed at putting the state on more secure footing, Vespasian is said to have revoked various imperial immunities, manipulated the supply of certain commodities to inflate their price, and increased provincial taxation. [[18]] The measures are consistent with his characterization in the sources as both obdurate and avaricious. There were occasional political problems as well: Helvidius Priscus, an advocate of senatorial independence and a critic of the Flavian regime from the start, was exiled after A.D. 75 and later executed; Marcellus Eprius and A. Alienus Caecina were condemned by Titus for conspiracy, the former committing suicide, the latter executed in A.D. 79.
As Suetonius claims, however, in financial matters Vespasian always put revenues to the best possible advantage, regardless of their source. Tacitus, too, offers a generally favorable assessment, citing Vespasian as the first man to improve after becoming emperor. [[19]] Thus do we find the princeps offering subventions to senators not possessing the property qualifications of their rank, restoring many cities throughout the empire, and granting state salaries for the first time to teachers of Latin and Greek rhetoric. To enhance Roman economic and social life even further, he encouraged theatrical productions by building a new stage for the Theatre of Marcellus, and he also put on lavish state dinners to assist the food trades. [[20]]

In other matters the emperor displayed similar concern. He restored the depleted ranks of the senatorial and equestrian orders with eligible Italian and provincial candidates and reduced the backlog of pending court cases at Rome. Vespasian also re-established discipline in the army, while punishing or dismissing large numbers of Vitellius ' men. [[21]]
Beyond Rome, the emperor increased the number of legions in the East and continued the process of imperial expansion by the annexation of northern England, the pacification of Wales, and by advances into Scotland and southwest Germany between the Rhine and the Danube. Vespasian also conferred rights on communities abroad, especially in Spain, where the granting of Latin rights to all native communities contributed to the rapid Romanization of that province during the Imperial period. [[22]]

Death and Assessment

In contrast to his immediate imperial predecessors, Vespasian died peacefully - at Aquae Cutiliae near his birthplace in Sabine country on 23 June, A.D. 79, after contracting a brief illness. The occasion is said to have inspired his deathbed quip: "Oh my, I must be turning into a god!" [[23]] In fact, public deification did follow his death, as did his internment in the Mausoleum of Augustus alongside the Julio-Claudians.

A man of strict military discipline and simple tastes, Vespasian proved to be a conscientious and generally tolerant administrator. More importantly, following the upheavals of A.D. 68-69, his reign was welcome for its general tranquility and restoration of peace. In Vespasian Rome found a leader who made no great breaks with tradition, yet his ability ro rebuild the empire and especially his willingness to expand the composition of the governing class helped to establish a positive working model for the "good emperors" of the second century.

Bibliography

Since the scholarship on Vespasian is more comprehensive than can be treated here, the works listed below are main accounts or bear directly upon issues discussed in the entry above. A comprehensive modern anglophone study of this emperor is yet to be produced.

Atti congresso internazionale di studi Flaviani, 2 vols. Rieti, 1983.

Atti congresso internazionale di studi Vespasianei, 2 vols. Rieti, 1981.

Bosworth, A.B. "Vespasian and the Provinces: Some Problems of the Early 70s A.D." Athenaeum 51 (1973): 49-78.

Brunt, P. A. "Lex de imperio Vespasiani." JRS (67) 1977: 95-116.

D'Espèrey, S. Franchet. "Vespasien, Titus et la littérature." ANRW II.32.5: 3048-3086.

Dudley, D. and Webster, G. The Roman Conquest of Britain. London, 1965.

Gonzalez, J. "The Lex Irnitana: A New Copy of the Flavian Municipal Law." JRS 76 (1986): 147-243.

Grant, M. The Roman Emperors: A Biographical Guide to the Rulers of Rome, 31 B.C. - A.D. 476. New York, 1985.

Homo, L. Vespasien, l'Empereur du bons sens (69-79 ap. J.-C.). Paris, 1949.

Levi, M.A. "I Flavi." ANRW II.2: 177-207.

McCrum, M. and Woodhead, A. G. Select Documents of the Principates of the Flavian Emperors Including the Year of the Revolution. Cambridge, 1966.

Nicols, John. Vespasian and the Partes Flavianae. Wiesbaden, 1978.

Scarre, C. Chronicle of the Roman Emperors. The Reign-by-Reign Record of the Rulers of Imperial Rome. London, 1995.

Suddington, D. B. The Development of the Roman Auxiliary Forces from Caesar to Vespasian, 49 B.C. - A.D. 79. Harare: U. of Zimbabwe, 1982.

Syme, R. Tacitus. Oxford, 1958.

Wardel, David. "Vespasian, Helvidius Priscus and the Restoration of the Capitol." Historia 45 (1996): 208-222.

Wellesley, K. The Long Year: A.D. 69. Bristol, 1989, 2nd ed.


Notes

[[1]] Suet. Vesp. 2.1. Suetonius remains the major source but see also Tac. Hist. 2-5; Cass. Dio 65; Joseph. BJ 3-4.

[[2]] Suetonius (Vesp. 2.1) claims that Vespasian did not accept the latus clavus, the broad striped toga worn by one aspiring to a senatorial career, immediately. The delay, however, was perhaps no more than three years. See J. Nicols, Vespasian and the Partes Flavianae (Wiesbaden, 1978), 2.

[[3]] Military tribunate and quaestorship: Suet. Vesp. 2.3; aedileship: ibid., 5.3, in which Gaius, furious that Vespasian had not kept the streets clean, as was his duty, ordered some soldiers to load him with filth;,they complied by stuffing his toga with as much as it could hold. See also Dio 59.12.2-3; praetorship: Suet. Vesp. 2.3, in which Vespasian is depicted as one of Gaius' leading adulators, an account consistent with Tacitus' portrayal (Hist 1.50.4; 2.5.1) of his early career. For a more complete discussion of these posts and attendant problems of dating, see Nicols, Vespasian, 2-7.

[[4]] Marriage and Caenis: Suet. Vesp. 3; Cass. Dio 65.14.

[[5]] Nicols, Vespasian, 12-39.

[[6]] Suet. Vesp. 4.1 For additional details on Vespasian's exploits in Britain, see D. Dudley and G. Webster, The Roman Conquest of Britain (London, 1965), 55 ff., 98.

[[7]] Concerning Vespasian's years between his consulship and proconsulship, see Suet. Vesp. 4.2 and Nicols, Vespasian, 9. On his unpopularity in Africa, see Suet. Vesp. 4.3, an account of a riot at Hadrumentum, where he was once pelted with turnips. In recording that Africa supported Vitellius in A.D. 69, Tacitus too suggests popular dissatisfaction with Vespasian's proconsulship. See Hist. 2.97.2.

[[8]] This despite the fact that the sources record two rebukes of Vespasian, one for extorting money from a young man seeking career advancement (Suet. Vesp. 4.3), the other for either leaving the room or dozing off during one of the emperor's recitals (Suet. Vesp. 4.4 and 14, which places the transgression in Greece; Tac. (Ann. 16.5.3), who makes Rome and the Quinquennial Games of A.D. 65 the setting; A. Braithwaite, C. Suetoni Tranquilli Divus Vespasianus, Oxford, 1927, 30, who argues for both Greece and Rome).

[[9]] Subjugation of Galilee: Joseph. BJ 3.65-4.106; siege of Jerusalem: ibid., 4.366-376, 414.

[[10]] Revolt of Vindex: Suet. Nero 40; Tac. Ann. 14.4; revolt of Galba: Suet. Galba 10; Plut. Galba, 4-5; suicide of Nero: Suet. Nero 49; Cass. Dio 63.29.2. For the most complete account of the period between Nero's death and the accession of Vespasian, see K. Wellesley, The Long Year: A.D. 69, 2nd. ed. (Bristol, 1989).

[[11]] Tac. Hist. 2.76.

[[12]] Troops in support of Vespasian: Suet. Vit. 15; Mucianus and his forces: Tac. Hist. 2.83; Vespasian and grain shipments: Joseph. BJ 4.605 ff.; see also Tac. Hist. 3.48, on Vespasian's possible plan to shut off grain shipments to Italy from Carthage as well.

[[13]] On Vitellius' army and its lack of discipline, see Tac. Hist. 2.93-94; illness of army: ibid., 2.99.1; Cremona: ibid., 3.32-33.

[[14]] On Vitellius' last days, see Tac. Hist. 3.68-81. On the complicated issue of Vitellius' death date, see L. Holzapfel, "Römische Kaiserdaten," Klio 13 (1913): 301.

[[15]] Honors, etc. Tac. Hist. 4.3. For more on the lex de imperio Vespasiani, see P. A. Brunt, "Lex de imperio Vespasiani," JRS (67) 1977: 95-116.

[[16]] Omens: Suet. Vesp. 5; consulships and honors: ibid., 8; succession of sons: ibid., 25.

[[17]] On Vespasian's restoration of Rome, see Suet. Vesp. 9; Cass. Dio 65.10; D. Wardel, "Vespasian, Helvidius Priscus and the Restoration of the Capitol," Historia 45 (1996): 208-222.

[[18]] Suet. Vesp. 16.

[[19]] Ibid.; Tac. Hist. 1.50.

[[20]] Suet. Vesp. 17-19.

[[21]] Ibid., 8-10.

[[22]] On Vespasian's exploits in Britain, see esp. Tac., Agricola, eds. R. M. Ogilvie and I. A. Richmond (1967), and W. S. Hanson, Agricola and the Conquest of the North (1987); on the granting of Latin rights in Spain, see, e.g., J. Gonzalez, "The Lex Irnitana: a New Copy of the Flavian Municipal Law." JRS 76 (1986): 147-243.

[[23]] For this witticism and other anecdotes concerning Vespasian's sense of humor, see Suet. Vesp. 23.

Copyright (C) 1998, John Donahue. Published on De Imperatoribus Romanis, an Online Encyplopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families.
http://www.roman-emperors.org/vespasia.htm
Used by permission.

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.





Cleisthenes
TitusCommColosseum.jpg
711a, Titus, 24 June 79 - 13 September 81 A.D. 106 viewsTITUS AUGUSTUS AR silver denarius. Struck at Rome, 80 AD. IMP TITVS CAESAR VESPASIAN AVG PM, laureate head right. Reverse - TRP IX IMP XV COS VIII PP, elephant walking left. Fully legible legends, about Very Fine, nice golden toning. Commemmorates the completion and dedication of the Colosseum and the opening of games. SCARCE. RCV 2512, valued at $544 in EF. 17mm, 3.1g. Ex Incitatus.

De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families

Titus Flavius Vespasianus (A.D. 79-81)

John Donahue
College of William and Mary

Titus Flavius Vespasianus was born on December 30, 39 A.D. He was the oldest of the three children of the founder of the Flavian Dynasty, Vespasian. Beginning in the year 70 Titus was named Cæsar and coregent; he was highly educated and a brilliant poet and orator in both Latin and Greek. He won military fame during the Jewish Revolt of 69-70. In April, 70, he appeared before the walls of Jerusalem, and conquered and destroyed the city after a siege of five months. He wished to preserve the Temple, but in the struggle with the Jews who rushed out of it a soldier threw a brand into the building. The siege and taking of the city were accompanied by barbarous cruelties. The next year Titus celebrated his victory by a triumph; to increase the fame of the Flavian dynasty the inscription on the triumphal arch represented the overthrow of the helpless people as a heroic achievement. Titus succeeded his father as Emperor in 79.

Before becoming emperor, tradition records that Titus was feared as the next Nero, a perception that may have developed from his association with Berenice, his alleged heavy-handedness as praetorian prefect, and tales of sexual debauchery. Once in office, however, both emperor and his reign were portrayed in universally positive terms. The suddenness of this transformation raises immediate suspicions, yet it is difficult to know whether the historical tradition is suspect or if Titus was in fact adept at taking off one mask for another. What is clear, however, is that Titus sought to present the Flavians as the legitimate successors of the Julio-Claudian dynasty. Proof came through the issuing of a series of restoration coins of previous emperors, the most popular being Augustus and Claudius. In A.D. 80 Titus also set out to establish an imperial cult in honor of Vespasian. The temple, in which cult (the first that was not connected with the Julio-Claudians) was housed, was completed by Domitian and was known as the Temple of Vespasian and Domitian.
Legitimacy was also sought through various economic measures, which Titus enthusiastically funded. Vast amounts of capital poured into extensive building schemes in Rome, especially the Flavian Amphitheater, popularly known as the Colosseum. In celebration of additions made to the structure, Titus provided a grand 100-day festival, with sea fights staged on an artificial lake, infantry battles, wild beast hunts, and similar activities. He also constructed new imperial baths to the south-east of the Amphitheater and began work on the celebrated Arch of Titus, a memorial to his Jewish victories. Large sums were directed to Italy and the provinces as well, especially for road building. In response to the eruption of Vesuvius in A.D. 79, Titus spent large sums to relieve distress in that area; likewise, the imperial purse contributed heavily to rebuilding Rome after a devastating fire destroyed large sections of the city in A.D. 80. As a result of these actions, Titus earned a reputation for generosity and geniality. For these reasons he gained the honourable title of "amor et deliciæ generis humani" (the darling and admiration of the human race). Even so, his financial acumen must not be under-estimated. He left the treasury with a surplus, as he had found it, and dealt promptly and efficiently with costly natural disasters. The Greek historian of the third-century A.D., Cassius Dio, perhaps offered the most accurate and succinct assessment of Titus' economic policy: "In money matters, Titus was frugal and made no unnecessary expenditure." In other areas, the brevity of Titus' reign limits our ability to detect major emphases or trends in policy. As far as can be discerned from the limited evidence, senior officials and amici were well chosen, and his legislative activity tended to focus on popular social measures, with the army as a particular beneficiary in the areas of land ownership, marriage, and testamentary freedom. In the provinces, Titus continued his father's policies by strengthening roads and forts in the East and along the Danube.

Titus died in September, A.D. 81 after only 26 months in office. Suetonius recorded that Titus died on his way to the Sabine country of his ancestors in the same villa as his father. A competing tradition persistently implicated his brother and successor, Domitian, as having had a hand in the emperor's demise, but the evidence is highly contradictory and any wrongdoing is difficult to prove. Domitian himself delivered the funeral eulogy and had Titus deified. He also built several monuments in honor of Titus and completed the Temple of Vespasian and Titus, changing the name of the structure to include his brother's and setting up his cult statue in the Temple itself.

Titus was the beneficiary of considerable intelligence and talent, endowments that were carefully cultivated at every step of his career, from his early education to his role under his father's principate. Cassius Dio suggested that Titus' reputation was enhanced by his early death. It is true that the ancient sources tend to heroicize Titus, yet based upon the evidence, his reign must be considered a positive one. He capably continued the work of his father in establishing the Flavian Dynasty and he maintained a high degree of economic and administrative competence in Italy and beyond. In so doing, he solidified the role of the emperor as paternalistic autocrat, a model that would serve Trajan and his successors well. Titus was used as a model by later emperors, especially those known as the Five Good Emperors (Nerva, Trajan, Hadrian, Antoninus Pius and Marcus Aurelius).

Copyright (C) 1997, John Donahue.
Published: De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families http://www.roman-emperors.org/startup.htm. Used by permission.

Catholic Encyclopedia, http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/14746b.htm

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.
Cleisthenes
Titus_Colosseum_Commem_AR_denarius.jpg
711a, Titus, 24 June 79 - 13 September 81 A.D.133 viewsTitus, 24 June 79 - 13 September 81 A.D. AR denarius, RCV 2512, aVF, struck at Rome, 80 A.D., 17.5mm, 3.4g. Obverse: IMP TITVS CAESAR VESPASIAN AVG PM, laureate head right; Reverse: TRP IX IMP XV COS VIII PP, elephant walking left. Fully legible legends; nice golden toning. This coin was struck in order to commemorate the completion and dedication of the Flavian Amphitheatre (the Colosseum) and its opening games. Very scarce. Ex Incitatus; photo courtesy Incitatus.

De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families

Titus Flavius Vespasianus (A.D. 79-81)

John Donahue
College of William and Mary

Titus Flavius Vespasianus was born on December 30, 39 A.D. He was the oldest of the three children of the founder of the Flavian Dynasty, Vespasian. Beginning in the year 70 Titus was named Cæsar and coregent; he was highly educated and a brilliant poet and orator in both Latin and Greek. He won military fame during the Jewish Revolt of 69-70. In April, 70, he appeared before the walls of Jerusalem, and conquered and destroyed the city after a siege of five months. He wished to preserve the Temple, but in the struggle with the Jews who rushed out of it a soldier threw a brand into the building. The siege and taking of the city were accompanied by barbarous cruelties. The next year Titus celebrated his victory by a triumph; to increase the fame of the Flavian dynasty the inscription on the triumphal arch represented the overthrow of the helpless people as a heroic achievement. Titus succeeded his father as Emperor in 79.

Before becoming emperor, tradition records that Titus was feared as the next Nero, a perception that may have developed from his association with Berenice, his alleged heavy-handedness as praetorian prefect, and tales of sexual debauchery. Once in office, however, both emperor and his reign were portrayed in universally positive terms. The suddenness of this transformation raises immediate suspicions, yet it is difficult to know whether the historical tradition is suspect or if Titus was in fact adept at taking off one mask for another. What is clear, however, is that Titus sought to present the Flavians as the legitimate successors of the Julio-Claudian dynasty. Proof came through the issuing of a series of restoration coins of previous emperors, the most popular being Augustus and Claudius. In A.D. 80 Titus also set out to establish an imperial cult in honor of Vespasian. The temple, in which cult (the first that was not connected with the Julio-Claudians) was housed, was completed by Domitian and was known as the Temple of Vespasian and Domitian.
Legitimacy was also sought through various economic measures, which Titus enthusiastically funded. Vast amounts of capital poured into extensive building schemes in Rome, especially the Flavian Amphitheater, popularly known as the Colosseum. In celebration of additions made to the structure, Titus provided a grand 100-day festival, with sea fights staged on an artificial lake, infantry battles, wild beast hunts, and similar activities. He also constructed new imperial baths to the south-east of the Amphitheater and began work on the celebrated Arch of Titus, a memorial to his Jewish victories. Large sums were directed to Italy and the provinces as well, especially for road building. In response to the eruption of Vesuvius in A.D. 79, Titus spent large sums to relieve distress in that area; likewise, the imperial purse contributed heavily to rebuilding Rome after a devastating fire destroyed large sections of the city in A.D. 80. As a result of these actions, Titus earned a reputation for generosity and geniality. For these reasons he gained the honourable title of "amor et deliciæ generis humani" (the darling and admiration of the human race). Even so, his financial acumen must not be under-estimated. He left the treasury with a surplus, as he had found it, and dealt promptly and efficiently with costly natural disasters. The Greek historian of the third-century A.D., Cassius Dio, perhaps offered the most accurate and succinct assessment of Titus' economic policy: "In money matters, Titus was frugal and made no unnecessary expenditure." In other areas, the brevity of Titus' reign limits our ability to detect major emphases or trends in policy. As far as can be discerned from the limited evidence, senior officials and amici were well chosen, and his legislative activity tended to focus on popular social measures, with the army as a particular beneficiary in the areas of land ownership, marriage, and testamentary freedom. In the provinces, Titus continued his father's policies by strengthening roads and forts in the East and along the Danube.

Titus died in September, A.D. 81 after only 26 months in office. Suetonius recorded that Titus died on his way to the Sabine country of his ancestors in the same villa as his father. A competing tradition persistently implicated his brother and successor, Domitian, as having had a hand in the emperor's demise, but the evidence is highly contradictory and any wrongdoing is difficult to prove. Domitian himself delivered the funeral eulogy and had Titus deified. He also built several monuments in honor of Titus and completed the Temple of Vespasian and Titus, changing the name of the structure to include his brother's and setting up his cult statue in the Temple itself.

Titus was the beneficiary of considerable intelligence and talent, endowments that were carefully cultivated at every step of his career, from his early education to his role under his father's principate. Cassius Dio suggested that Titus' reputation was enhanced by his early death. It is true that the ancient sources tend to heroicize Titus, yet based upon the evidence, his reign must be considered a positive one. He capably continued the work of his father in establishing the Flavian Dynasty and he maintained a high degree of economic and administrative competence in Italy and beyond. In so doing, he solidified the role of the emperor as paternalistic autocrat, a model that would serve Trajan and his successors well. Titus was used as a model by later emperors, especially those known as the Five Good Emperors (Nerva, Trajan, Hadrian, Antoninus Pius and Marcus Aurelius).

Copyright (C) 1997, John Donahue.
Published: De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families http://www.roman-emperors.org/startup.htm. Used by permission.

Catholic Encyclopedia, http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/14746b.htm

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.
3 commentsCleisthenes
domitian as-.jpg
81-96 AD - DOMITIAN AE as - struck 90-91 AD34 viewsobv: IMP.CAES.DOMIT.AVG.GERM.COS.XV. CENS.PER.P.P. (laureate head right)
rev: VIRTVTI AVGVSTI / S.C. (Virtus standing right, holding parazonium and sceptre, left foot on helmet)
ref: RIC II 397, C.656 (2frcs)
mint: Rome
12.06gms, 25mm

History: Domitian attacked the Suebian Marcomanni and Quadi in the First Pannonian War (AD 89), while offering the Dacian king Decebalus a settlement to avoid conflicts on two fronts. Compelled to return to the Danube three years later, Domitian fought the combined forces of the Suebi and the Sarmatians in the Second Pannonian War (AD 92). Few other details are available beyond the fact that a Roman legion was destroyed (Legio XXI Rapax) in a campaign that lasted about eight months. By January, AD 93, Domitian was back in Rome, not to accept a full triumph but the lesser ovatio, a sign perhaps of unfinished business along the Danube. In fact, during the final years of Domitian's reign, the buildup of forces on the middle Danube and the appointment and transfer of key senior officials suggest that a third Pannonian campaign (? AD 95) directed against the Suebi and Sarmatians may have been underway. Even so, there is no testimony of actual conflicts and the evidence does not extend beyond AD 97.
berserker
Abdagases_I.jpg
Abdagases I - AR tetradrachm28 viewsTaxila
50-65 AD
King on horseback right, letter before
ΒΑΣΙΛΕΥ??AV?ΝΔΙΦEΡΟΑΔΕΛΦΙΔΕШC
Zeus with scepter right
Gadapharabhradaputrasa maharajasa tradatasa Avadagasasa
Senior 227.18
9,08g 23 mm
Johny SYSEL
FAUSTSR-11.jpg
Aeternitas, Personification of eternity and stability376 viewsFaustina Senior, wife of Antoninus Pius, Augusta 138-141 C.E.
AR Denarius, Rome mint, 147-161 C.E.
Obv: DIVA FAVSTINA, Draped bust, r.
Rev: AETERNITAS, Aeternitas standing l., holding phoenix and lifting fold of skirt.
RIC-347; Sear-4576; BMC-354; Cohen-11.

Aeternitas personifies eternity and stability. She is depicted with a variety of attributes which may include a torch, globe, phoenix, cornucopiae, scepter or the heads of Sol and Luna; she is often shown leaning against a column or seated on a globe.
EmpressCollector
aggrippina~0.jpg
Agrippina I Senior AE Sestertius33 viewsAgrippina I Senior AE Sestertius. Rome, 37-41 A.D. AGRIPPINA M F MAT C CAESARIS AVGVSTI, Draped bust right / SPQR MEMORIAE AGRIPPINAE, Two wheeled Carpentum left, drawn by two mules, stilt supported by Caryatids. RIC 55

Ex. Artemid Aste, Jean Baptiste Collection
2 commentsHolding_History
aggrippina.jpg
Agrippina I Senior AE Sestertius31 viewsAgrippina I Senior AE Sestertius. Memorial issue struck by Claudius, 42 AD. AGRIPPINA M F GERMANICI CAESARIS, Draped bust right. / TI CLAVDIVS CAESAR AVG GERM P M TR P IMP P P, Legend around large S C. 34mm, 27.8g. Sear 19062 commentsHolding_History
Mega_Soter.jpg
Ancient India, Kushans: Vima Takto (ca. 80-100 AD) of various denominations48 views

Upper Left

Kushans: Vima Takto (ca. 80-100 AD) AE (AICR-1177; MACW-2918; Senior B13.1T)

Obv: King on horse to right holding axe-like weapon in raised right, three-pronged tamgha on right, Greek legend around BACIΛEY BACIΛEYWN CWTHP MEΓAC
Rev: Zeus standing to right, with his left holding long scepter and with his outstretched right making blessed gesture. Kharosthi letter vi on left and flower-pot on right. Kharosthi legend around reading Maharajaasa Rajatirajasa Mahatasa Tratarasa



Middle Left

Kushans: Vima Takto (ca. 80-100 AD) AE drachm (AICR-1178; MACW-2919; Senior B13.1D)

Obv: King on horse to right holding axe-like weapon in raised right, three-pronged tamgha on right, Greek legend around BACIΛEY BACIΛEYWN CWTHP MEΓAC
Rev: Zeus standing to right, with his left holding long scepter and with his outstretched right making blessed gesture. Kharosthi letter vi on left and flower-pot on right. Kharosthi legend around reading Maharajaasa Rajatirajasa Mahatasa Tratarasa



Lower Left

Kushans: Vima Takto (ca. 80-100 AD) AE (AICR-1179; MACW-2921; Senior B14.1)

Obv: Hybrid Herakles-Siva deity standing facing holding long trident in right and lion-skin in left, three-pronged tamgha on left and Kharosthi letter vi on right.
Rev: Tyche standing to right holding cornucopia, nandipada on left, flower-pot on right



Upper Right

Kushans: Vima Takto (ca. 80-100 AD) AE (MACW-2937; Senior B17.1vT)

Obv: Radiate (9 rays) diademed bust of king to right holding arrow decorated with ribbons in raised right hand, three-pronged tamgha on left, dotted border around.
Rev: King in Iranian cap with long diadem-ties riding on horse to right holding axe-like weapon in raised right hand, three-pronged tamgha on right, Greek legend around reading BACIΛEYC BACIΛEYWN CWTHP M.



Middle Right

Kushans: Vima Takto (ca. 80-100 AD) AE drachm (Senior B17.1D)

Obv: Radiate diademed bust of king to right holding arrow decorated with ribbons in raised right hand, three-pronged tamgha on left, dotted border around.
Rev: King in Iranian cap with long diadem-ties riding on horse to right holding axe-like weapon in raised right hand, three-pronged tamgha on right, Greek legend around reading BACIΛEYC BACIΛEYWN CWTHP M.



Lower Right

This one is unknown to me, but dealer indicated it might be central asian. Rider on horseback facing left / tamghra. Any help in identification is much appreciated...
SpongeBob
Baktria_Hermaios_SNG-ANS1344.jpg
Baktria, Hermaios7 viewsBaktria, Hermaios. 105-90 BC. AR Tetradrachm (9.63 gm). Helmeted and draped bust of king r. ΒΑΣΙΛΕΩΣ ΣΩTHPOΣ EPMAIOY / Zeus enthroned, 3/4 l., hand extended, holding scepter. Karosthi legend Maharajasa tratarasa Heramayasa (of Great King Hermaios the Savior). Monogram l. VF. Vauctions 329 #227. Very Rare. SNG ANS 1344ff; Bopearachichi Série 1 4D; HGC 9 #289 (R2); Senior H3cT. Christian T
Bronze_as_of_Faustina_Senior_(died_141_AD),_Roman_Empire.jpg
Bronze as of Faustina Senior (died 141 AD), Roman Empire22 viewsBronze as of Faustina Senior (died 141 AD), Roman Empire 2400



Antonio Protti
imgonline-com-ua-twotoone-jL32v9k6T0fUkE3l-Agrippa.jpg
Caligula (Agrippa) (Augustus) Coin: Bronze AS2 viewsM AGRIPPA. L. F. COS. III - Head left, wearing rostral crown
S-C across field - Neptune standing left, holding small dolphin and trident.
Exergue:



Mint: Rome (37-41 AD)
Wt./Size/Axis: 11.70g / 28.45mm / 6h
Rarity: Common
References:
RIC I 58 (Gaius)
BMCRE 161 (Tiberius)
Cohen 3
Acquisition/Sale: 22noelnoel22 Ebay $0.00 08/18
Notes: Aug 24, 18 - The Gary R. Wilson Collection

Agrippa, Military Commander, Friend of Augustus, Grandfather of Caligula, Great-grandfather of Nero
Marcus Vipsanius Agrippa was a boyhood friend of Augustus and a renowned military commander on land and sea, winning the famous battle of Actium against the forces of Marcus Antonius and Cleopatra. Declared Augustus' successor, Agrippa's brilliant career ended when he predeceased Augustus in 12 B.C. He was married to Augustus' daughter Julia; father of Gaius and Lucius Caesars, Agrippa Postumus, Julia and Agrippina Senior; grandfather of Caligula, and great-grandfather of Nero.
Gary W2
Agrippa-Brass_As_of_Roman_Co.jpg
Caligula (Agrippa) (Augustus) Coin: Bronze As 1 viewsM AGRIPPA L F COS III - Head of Agrippa, left, wearing rostral crown
S C - Neptune stg. l. holding dolphin and trident
Exergue:



Mint: Rome (37-41AD)
Wt./Size/Axis: 10.00g / 27mm / 180
Rarity: Common
References:
BMC 161
RIC 1 58
Acquisition/Sale: servuscoins Ebay $0.00 8/17
Notes: Jun 13, 18 - The Gary R. Wilson Collection

Agrippa, Military Commander, Friend of Augustus, Grandfather of Caligula, Great-grandfather of Nero
Marcus Vipsanius Agrippa was a boyhood friend of Augustus and a renowned military commander on land and sea, winning the famous battle of Actium against the forces of Marcus Antonius and Cleopatra. Declared Augustus' successor, Agrippa's brilliant career ended when he predeceased Augustus in 12 B.C. He was married to Augustus' daughter Julia; father of Gaius and Lucius Caesars, Agrippa Postumus, Julia and Agrippina Senior; grandfather of Caligula, and great-grandfather of Nero.
Gary W2
Caligula_sestertius.jpg
Caligula (Augustus) Coin: Brass Sestertius 12 viewsC CAESAR AVG GERMANICVS PON M TR POT - Laureate head left
AD LOCVT - Gaius Caligula stg. l. on daïs, extending r. hand in gesture of address (ad locutio), a sella castrensis (camp stool) to r., before him stand five soldiers r., all helmeted, holding shields, and parazonia, four aquilae behind them, in ex. COH,
Exergue: COH


Mint: Rome (37-38AD)
Wt./Size/Axis: 24.69g / 34mm / 180
Rarity: Scarce
References:
RIC 32
Sear'88 #612
Cohen 1
MIR 3, 6-4
BMCRE 33
Provenances:
Baldwin's of St. James's
Acquisition/Sale: Baldwin's of St. James's Internet 8/9-20-17 #31

The Gary R. Wilson Collection

ODERINT, DUM METUANT (LET THEM HATE, SO LONG AS THEY FEAR). — CALIGULA

From CNG:
Before a battle or on parade, the emperor would address his troops in an event known as an adlocutio cohortium (address to the cohorts). This was an important opportunity for the emperor to be present among his troops to inspire morale. This sestertius was issued on the occasion of a donative for the Praetorian Guard and was the first to employ the adlocutio as a reverse type.

The orderly succession and survival of any Roman emperor depended on the Praetorian Guard, an elite force of bodyguards stationed in the capital. It was organized into nine battalions or “cohorts” each of 500 – 1000 men. On his accession, one of Caligula’s first official acts was to present each guardsman with a thousand sestertii bequeathed by Tiberius in his will, adding another thousand of his own[7]. The reverse of a rare bronze sestertius, which may have been specially struck for this payment, shows Caligula standing on a platform with his arm raised in a formal gesture of greeting to a rank of guards. The abbreviated inscription ADLOCUT COH means “Address to the Cohorts.” Remarkably, this coin lacks the inscription SC (“by decree of the Senate”) which normally appeared on all Roman bronze coinage.

Highly unusual on this type is the lack of the letters S C, which designate a coin issued by decree of the Senate (Senatus Consulto). From Republican times, the formula had been used on both silver and bronze coinage, but under the Empire, the emperor took responsibility for the precious metal coinage and left only the base metal coins to be issued by the Senate and accordingly marked S C. Imperial bronze coinage without the formula is generally thought to have been issued under special circumstances and under an authority other than the Senate. The ADLOCVT(io) COH(ortium) sestertii are thought to have been a special distribution issue for the Praetorian Guard personally funded out of the emperor's own purse.
The lack of S C suggests that this interesting issue was undertaken and paid for by the emperor. Cassius Dio (59.2) writes “... in company with the senate, he inspected the Pretorians at drill and distributed to them the money that had been bequeathed them, amounting to a thousand sesterces apiece.”

From Jeff Starck, Coin World:
Many Roman coins bear the giant letters SC, shorthand for “senatus consulto” or “senatus consultum.” The fact that they are missing from this coin suggests that the coin was not issued with the approval of the Roman senate. This was an obvious statement of authority by the fairly new leader Caligula.

“There is no reason to believe its exclusion was accidental,” according to the catalog. “The inescapable message to the senate was that the emperor’s newfound authority was assured by his relationship with the [prateorean] guard.”

Tiberius died in 37 A.D., perhaps with the aid of Sertorius Macro, who had authority as a prefect in the prateorean guard; Macro then offered his support to Caligula, who received full authority from the state.

Tiberius’ will allocated 1,000 sestertii for each guard, an amount that Caligula doubled upon realizing that his power rested largely in the support of the guard.

These payments were handed out during a ceremony that is presumably pictured on the coin’s reverse, where Caligula is shown standing before the seat of the army chief, delivering a speech to five soldiers. The inscription ADLOCVT COH describes the image, the abbreviation identifying the adlocutio (speech from the emperor to his army).

The curule chair was for senior magistrates including dictators, masters of the horse, consuls, praetors, censors, and the curule aediles. As a form of a throne, it might be given as an honor to foreign kings recognized formally as a friend (amicus) by the Roman people or senate. Designed for use by commanders in the field, the curule chair could be folded for easy transport. It had no back, low arms, curved legs forming an X, and was traditionally made of or veneered with ivory.
Gary W2
imgonline-com-ua-twotoone-8hDqgyvl4MzVjv-Agrippina.jpg
Caligula (Augustus) Coin: Brass Sestertius (Agrippina I)3 viewsAGRIPPINA M F MAT C CAESARIS AVGVSTI - Bust of Agrippina the Elder, right, her hair falling in queue down her neck
SPQR MEMORIAE AGRIPPINAE - Carpentum, with ornamented cover and sides, drawn right by two mules
Mint: Rome (37-41AD)
Wt./Size/Axis: 22.00g / 34mm / 180
Rarity: Common
References:
RIC 1-Gaius 55
Trillmich Group II; BMCRE 81-5 (Caligula)
BN 128 (Caligula)
BMCRE 86-7 (Caligula)
Cohen 1
Acquisition/Sale: sesterc1975 Ebay

Caligula's mother.

ODERINT, DUM METUANT (LET THEM HATE, SO LONG AS THEY FEAR). — CALIGULA

Agrippina Sr.,one of the most tragically unfortunate women of Roman history. Agrippina was destined to achieve the highest possible status that did not happen. In 29AD she was deprived of her freedom, and in 33AD of life itself. This sestertii dedicated to Agrippina was produced by her son Caligula, The inscription, SPQR MEMORIAE AGRIPPINAE, is itself dedicatory from the Senate and the Roman people to the memory of Agrippina.

Of this coin, minted at Rome, in gold and silver, Agrippina occupies the most distinguished place, namely the obverse side. She styles herself (by implication) the wife of Claudius, and, in direct terms, the mother of Nero; as though the government of the empire had been in her hands, and her son only Caesar. It is on this account that Tacitus (Ann. 23), asks -- What help is there in him, who is governed by a woman? It is not to be wondered at therefore, adds Vaillant, if the oaken garland was decreed to this woman and to her son, as it had already been to Caligula and to Claudius, ob cives servatos, by the Senate, whom she assembled in the palace, where she sat discreetly veiled. Praest. Num. Impp. ii. 60.

Agrippina the Elder, mother of Caligula, was honored on a bronze sestertius. The obverse inscription surrounding her strong, dignified portrait translates: “Agrippina, daughter of Marcus, mother of emperor Gaius Caesar.” On the reverse, the legend “To the Memory of Agrippina” appears beside a carpentum, a ceremonial cart drawn by two mules that paraded an image of Agrippina on special occasions.

Three issues of sestertii were struck in honour of Agrippina Senior, one of the most tragically unfortunate women of
Roman history. She began life as a favoured member of the Julio-Claudian family during the reign of her grandfather
Augustus, and upon her marriage to Livia’s grandson Germanicus, she seemed destined to achieve the highest possible
status.
However, upon the death of Augustus and the accession of Tiberius, her life took a turn for the worse: supreme power had
shifted from the bloodlines of the Julii to the Claudii. Though her marriage represented and ideal union of Julian and
Claudian, it was not destined to survive Tiberius’ reign. Germanicus died late in 19 under suspicious circumstances, after
which Agrippina devoted the next decade of her life to openly opposing Tiberius until in 29 he deprived her of freedom,
and in 33 of life itself.
The sestertii dedicated to Agrippina are easily segregated. The first, produced by her son Caligula, shows on its reverse a
carpentum; the second, issued by her brother Claudius, shows SC surrounded by a Claudian inscription, and the third is
simply a restoration of the Claudian type by Titus, on which the reverse inscription is instead dedicated to that emperor.
Though both Caligula and Claudius portrayed Agrippina, each did so from their own perspective, based upon the nature of
their relationship with her. The inscription on Caligula’s coin, AGRIPPINA M F MAT C CAESARIS AVGVSTI, describes
her as the daughter of Marcus (Agrippa) and the mother of Gaius (Caligula). While Claudius also identifies her as
Agrippa’s daughter, his inscription ends GERMANICI CAESARIS, thus stressing her role as the wife of his brother
Germanicus. It is also worth noting that on the issue of Caligula Agrippina has a slender profile like that of her son,
whereas on Claudius’ sestertii her face is more robust, in accordance with his appearance.
The carpentum reverse is not only a superbly executed type, but has a foundation in the recorded events of the day.
Suetonius (Gaius 15) describes the measures taken by Caligula to honour his family at the outset of his reign, which
included gathering the ashes of his mother and brothers, all victims of persecution during the reign of Tiberius. Upon
returning to Rome, Caligula, with his own hands, transferred to an urn his mother’s ashes “with the utmost reverence”; he
then instituted Circus games in her honour, at which “…her image would be paraded in a covered carriage.”
There can be little doubt that the carpentum on this sestertius relates to the special practice initiated by Caligula. The
inscription, SPQR MEMORIAE AGRIPPINAE, is itself dedicatory from the Senate and the Roman people to the memory
of Agrippina.
Gary W2
new_caius_combined.jpg
Caligula AR Denarius31 viewsCaligula and Agrippina AR Denarius, aF, toned, bumps and marks,
(17.84 mm, 2.680g) 180o
Lugdunum (Lyon, France) mint, end of 37 - early 38 A.D.;
Obv: C CAESAR AVG GERM P M TR POT (counterclockwise), laureate head of Gaius right;
Rev: AGRIPPINA MAT C CAES AVG GERM (counterclockwise), draped bust of Agrippina Senior (his mother), her hair in a queue behind, one curly lock falls loose on the side of her neck,
RIC I 14 (R) (Rome), RSC II 2; BMCRE I 15 (Rome), BnF II 24, Hunter I 7 (Rome), SRCV I 1825
Ex: the Jyrki Muona Collection, Ex: Forvm Ancient Coins.




As you can tell from the photo, this is a worn coin. All denarii of Gaius (Caligula) are scarce, and some are harder to find than others. Denarii of Claudius are also scarce. The speculation is that after Nero debased the denarii, people hoarded all of the good silver coins, and this included denarii of Claudius and Gaius. According to Gresham's law bad money drives out good money. However, this does not explain why there appears to be plenty of earlier denarii available of figures such as Tiberius and Augustus but very few of Claudius and Gaius. We may never have a satisfactory answer.

Now why do I call him Gaius. Caligula (meaning little boots) was a nickname given to Gaius when he was young and travelling with his father's (Germanicus) army. According to contemporary or near contemporary accounts he detested the name. If you were emperor I am sure you would not want to be called "Bootykins".

The reverse of this coin has a portrait of Agrippina the Elder , Gaius' mother. She reportedly starved herself to death 4 years before Gaius became emperor.
orfew
RI 049b img~0.jpg
Ceres332 viewsFaustina Senior Denarius
Obv:– DIVA FAVSTINA, Draped bust head right, hair in bun
Rev:– AVGVSTA, Ceres standing left, holding grain ears and torch
References:– RIC 360, RSC 78

Ceres, goddess of agriculture, carries grain ears and a torch used when she descended into the underworld in search of he daughter Persephone
maridvnvm
Nero_Claudius_Drusus_AE_sestertius_-_37mm_188.jpg
Claudius (Augustus) Coin: Brass Sestertius (for Nero Claudius Drusus)2 viewsNERO CLAVDIVS DRVSVS GERMANICVS IMP - Bare head of Nero Claudius Drusus left
TI CLAVDIVS CAESAR AVG P M TR P IMP P P - Claudius seated left on curule chair, holding branch, arms around.
Exergue: SC


Mint: Rome (41-43 AD)
Wt./Size/Axis: 24.90g / 37mm / 6h
Rarity: Scarce
References:
RIC 109 (Claudius)
BMCRE 208 (Claudius)
CBN 198
Cohen 8
von Kaenel Type 72
Provenances:
Marti Classical Numismatics
Acquisition/Sale: Marti Classical Numismatics VCoins $0.00 01/19
The Gary R. Wilson Collection

Nero Claudius Drusus, commonly called Drusus senior, brother of Tiberius, second son of Tiberius Claudius Nero and of Livia, was born in the year of Rome 716, three months after his father had yielded up Livia to Augustus.
Realizing the anticipations of that Emperor, he became the most accomplished hero of his time. Sent at the age of twenty-three into Rhaetia (the Tyrol) to quell a revolt, he conquered the insurgents at Trent in a pitched battle. Afterwards named General of the armies in Germany, his successes were so great that he extended the dominion of the Romans to the banks of the Elbe. This fine character conceived the design of re-establishing the Republic, and entrusted his secret to his brother Tiberius, who it is said betrayed him to Augustus. -- He died in the year 745 (A.D. 9), before he had repassed the Rhine, in the 30th year of his age, deeply regretted by the whole empire for the great and virtuous qualities with which his name was so gloriously associated. After his death the Senate surnamed him GERMANICVS, which was transmitted to his children. Statues and triumphal arches were also erected to his honour and figured on his medals. This Prince had married Antonia, by whom he had Germanicus and Livilla. On his coins which, in each metal, are all more or less rare, he is styled DRVSVS - NERO CLAVDIVS DRVSVS GERMANicus IMP.

Obverse translation:
NERO CLAVDIVS DRVSVS GERMANICVS IMPerator=commander

Reverse translation:
TIberius CLAVDIVS CAESAR AVGvstvs Pontifex Maximvs TRibvnitiae Potestatis IMPerator=Tiberius Claudius Caesar Augustus, Sovereign Pontiff, invested with the tribunitian power.
Gary W2
Claudius_II_AE_Antoninianus.jpg
Claudius II Gothicus, September 268 - August or September 270 A.D.25 viewsSilvered antoninianus, MER-RIC 60, RIC V 157, Normanby 1031, Venera 9303 - 9364, Cunetio 2263, Hunter IV 58, SRCV III 3215, Cohen VI 202, Choice gVF, some silvering, 4.608g, 22.0mm, 315o, 3rd officina, Mediolanum (Milan, Italy) mint, issue 2, mid 269 - spring 270; obverse IMP CLAVDIVS P F AVG, radiate, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse PAX AVG, Pax walking left, extending olive-branch in right hand, long transverse scepter in left, T in exergue.

Ex FORVM Ancient Coins

In 268, Gallienus was murdered by his senior officers while besieging the would-be usurper Aureolus in Mediolanum (Milan). The Senate charged Marcus Aurelius Claudius with Gallienus' murder but it was never proven. The accused became the new emperor, Claudius II.

From The Sam Mansourati Collection.
Sam
CLBC-16_3.jpg
Coinage of Uncertain Rulers (1204-1261) BI Trachy, Thessalonica? (CLBC 16.3)16 viewsObv: Full-length figure of Virgin nimbate, orans, wearing tunic and maphorion; holds beardless, nimbate head of Christ on breast
Rev: Full-length figure of senior ruler on left, with short rounded beard, and of junior ruler on right, beardless, holding between them patriarchal cross on long shaft. Both rulers wear stemma, divitision, collar-piece, and jeweled loros of simplified type, and hold scepters
Quant.Geek
Costantine2.jpg
Constantine II 337-340 A.D.34 views
Metal: Bronze
Diam: 16 mm.
Weight: 1.6 gr.

OBV: Constantine II, Elder son of Constantine The Great :Diademed and cuirassed bust facing Right
OBV-LEGEND: CONSTANTINVSIVNNOBC
Marks-OBV: None

REV: Two helmeted soldiers standing with spears & shields, facing one standard between them.
REV-LEGEND : GLOR IAEXER ITUS
Marks-REV: In Exergue: SMNA also Alignment shifted 180 (Obv and Rev. are upside down one to aother)

Source : N/A
Age: 337-340 A.D.
Mint: Nicomedia *
*Nicomedia Nicomedia (Greek: Νικομήδεια, modern İzmit in Turkey) was founded by Nicomedes I of Bithynia at the head of the Gulf of Astacus which opens to the Propontis. The city was founded in 712 BC and, in early Antiquity, was called Astacus or Olbia. After being destroyed, it was rebuilt by Nicomedes I in 264 BC under the name of Nicomedia, and has ever since been one of the most important cities in northwestern Asia Minor. Hannibal came to Nicomedia in his final years and committed suicide in nearby Libyssa (Diliskelesi, Gebze). The historian Arrian was born there. Nicomedia was the metropolis of Bithynia under the Roman Empire, and Diocletian made it the eastern capital city of the Roman Empire in 286 when he introduced the Tetrarchy system. Nicomedia remained as the eastern (and most senior) capital of the Roman Empire until co-emperor Licinius was defeated by Constantine the Great at the Battle of Chrysopolis (Üsküdar) in 324. Constantine mainly resided in Nicomedia as his interim capital city for the next six years, until in 330 he declared the nearby Byzantium as Nova Roma, which eventually became known as Constantinople (present-day Istanbul). Constantine died in a royal villa at the vicinity of Nicomedia in 337. Owing to its position at the convergence of the Asiatic roads leading to the new capital, Nicomedia retained its importance even after the foundation of Constantinople.[1]

However, a major earthquake on 24 August 358 caused extensive devastation to Nicomedia and was followed by a fire which completed the catastrophe. Nicomedia was rebuilt, but on a smaller scale.[2] In the sixth century under Emperor Justinian the city was extended with new public buildings. Situated on the roads leading to the capital, the city remained a major military center, playing an important role in the Byzantine campaigns against the Caliphate.[3]

From the 840s on, Nicomedia was the capital of the thema of the Optimatoi. By that time, most of the old, seawards city had been abandoned and is described by the Arab geographer Ibn Khurdadhbeh as lying in ruins. The settlement had obviously been restricted to the hilltop citadel.[3] In the 1080s, the city served as the main military base for Alexios I Komnenos in his campaigns against the Seljuk Turks, and the First and Second Crusades both encamped there. The city was held by the Latin Empire between 1204 and ca. 1240, when it was recovered by John III Vatatzes. It remained in Byzantine control for a further century, but following the Byzantine defeat at the Battle of Bapheus in 1302, it was threatened by the rising Ottoman beylik. The city was twice blockaded by the Ottomans (in 1304 and 1330) before finally succumbing in 1337.[3]



Ref : Ric VII 189
Michel C2
coin_5_quart.jpg
CONSTANTINVS MAX AVG (the 1st) / GLORIA EXERCITVS AE3/4 follis (306-337 A.D.)18 viewsCONSTANTI-NVS MAX AVG, (laurel and?) rosette diademed, draped and cuirassed bust right / GLOR-IA EXERC-ITVS, two soldiers standing inward facing each other, holding spears, shields and two standards between them, "dot" (clearly filled) on banners. Mintmark: SMNE (?) in exergue.

AE3/4, 16.5-17mm, 2.46g, die axis 12 (medal alignment), material: bronze/copper-based alloy

MAX AVG = Maximus Augustus, the Great Emperor, Gloria Exercitus (noun + genitive) "The Glory of the Army", SMNE = Sacra Moneta Nicomedia, "officina epsilon", i. e. workshop#5.

Limiting information to only what is known for sure: the legends with the particular breaks, two standards and four-letter mintmark starting with SM, we conclude that this is definitely Constantine I, and only 3 mints are possible: SMN... Nicomedia (RIC VII Nicomedia 188), SMH... Heraclea (RIC VII Nicomedia 111) and SMK... Cyzicus (RIC VII Cyzicus 76-79). All are minted in 330-335 A.D. If the mintmark is indeed SMN..., two variations are listed: rosette-diademed and laurel- and rosette-diademed (laurels typically designated by longish shapes and rosettes as squares with dots). Since the obverse is worn, it is difficult to judge which one is the case here. One can definitely see the rosettes, but as for laurels... probably, not. Officina may be E or S, but I think E fits better.

Flavius Valerius Aurelius Constantinus, aka Constantine the Great, aka Saint Constantine, born 27 Feb c. 272 to Flavius Valerius Constantius (aka Constantius I), a Roman Army officer of Illyrian origins, and a Greek woman of low birth Helena (aka Saint Helena). His father became Caesar, the deputy emperor in the west, in 293 AD. Constantine was sent east, where he rose through the ranks to become a military tribune under Emperors Diocletian and Galerius. In 305, Constantius raised himself to the rank of Augustus, senior western emperor, and Constantine was recalled west to campaign under his father in Britannia (Britain). Constantine was acclaimed as emperor by the army at Eboracum (modern-day York) after his father's death in 306 AD, and he emerged victorious in a series of civil wars against Emperors Maxentius and Licinius to become sole ruler of both west and east by 324 AD. He did so many a great deed that there is no point to list them here. Best known for (having some sort of Christ-related mystical experience in 312, just before the decisive Battle of the Milvian Bridge with Maxentius) being the first Roman Emperor to convert to Christianity and for being a champion of this faith, in particular, he played an influential role in the proclamation of the Edict of Milan in 313, which declared religious tolerance for Christianity in the Roman empire, and called the First Council of Nicaea in 325 that produced the statement of Christian belief known as the Nicene Creed. Died 22 May 337, famously being baptized on his deathbed. Succeeded by his 3 sons: Constantine II, Constantius II and Constans.
Yurii P
619NN404.jpg
Cr 421/1 AR Denarius M. Nonius Sufenas17 viewscirca 57- 59 b.c.e., 17.5mm., 3.97gms.
o: SVFENAS – S·C Head of Saturn r.; in l. field, harpa and conical stone
r: PR·L·V·P·F Roma seated l. on pile of arms, holding sceptre and sword, crowned by Victory standing behind her; in exergue, SEX·NONI·. Nonia 1.
The reverse inscription expands as : PR[aetor] L[vdos] V[ictoriae] P[rimus] F[ecit]. Interesting back-story crammed into a busy reverse. The moneyer's father (or grandfather) while Praetor, was the First to "Make" the Games of Victory [of Sulla]. The son's willingness to advertise this on his coins was rather aggressive, considering Sulla's reputation was rapidly declining and his father was a mere partisan despite sponsoring one round of games, and he himself no more popular even though he became praetor, somewhat underlined by this being the first and only "Nonia" issue. Presumably he had faith in Pompey, who was the most enduring and successful of the Sullan partisans and seen as the senior in the power-sharing "First Triumvirate". This bet seemingly did not work out well, but the specifics are not available.
3 commentsPMah
diocletian.jpg
Diocletian Abdication Follis. AE28. Carthage81 viewsDiocletianus as Senior Augustus, minted under Severus II.
AE28. Mint of Karthago. 305 - 306 AD.
Obv. D N DIOCLETIANO FELICISSIMO SEN AVG, laurate bust right, in imperial mantle, right holding olive-branch, left mappa.
Rev. PROVIDENTIA DEORVM QVIES AVGG, Providentia standing right, extending right hand to Quies standing left, right holding branch, left leaning on sceptre.
S - F in field right and left. PKB in ex.
Cf. RIC VI Carthago 42a
2 commentsancientone
22761q00.jpg
Diva Faustina Senior28 viewsDIVA AVG FAVSTINA, draped bust right / PIE-TAS AVG, Pietas standing left, dropping incense on altar. RIC 394a, RSC 234, BMC 311mestreaudi
Diva_Faustina_Senior.jpg
Diva Faustina Senior Sestertius40 viewsDiva Faustina Senior. Died AD 140/1. Æ Sestertius (34 mm, 24,20 g). Rome mint. Struck under Antoninus Pius, circa AD 141-146. Draped bust right / Faustina, holding scepter, seated on eagle flying upward to the right. RIC III 1133 (Pius) ; C. 182; BMC 1425; Banti 58. gF. Rare, with Faustina on eagle.

EX Andrea Reich Collection.

From The Sam Mansourati Collection.
Sam
0131-510np_noir.jpg
Diva Faustina Senior, As103 viewsPosthumous issue, struck in Rome after 147 AD
DIVA FAVSTINA, Draped bust of Faustina right
AETER NITAS, Eternity standing left, holding Phoenix in right hand and her dress in left hand
11.45 gr
Ref : Cohen #13, RCV #4638
Potator II
fa1divibosOR.jpg
Diva Faustina Senior, Spijkerman 1514 viewsArabia, Bostra mint, Diva Faustina Senior, Died AD 140/1 AE, 11mm 1.17g, Kindler 11; Rosenberger 11-2; Spijkerman 15
O: ΘEA ΦAVCT, Veiled and draped bust right
R: NT O/B, three heads of barley fastened together, all within wreath
1 commentscasata137ec
Diva_Faustina_Senior.png
Diva Faustina Senior.27 viewsAR Denarius . Rome mint.
Draped bust right / Vesta standing. Ch VF .
1 commentsSam
Capture0004087.jpg
Drachm of Rudrasena II7 viewsDrachm of Rudrasena II as mahakshatrapa (great satrap). c. 256-274 CE (or Saka c. 178-196)

Bust of Rudrasena II right, with corrupted Greek legend (Indo-Greek style), date in Brahmi numerals behind (off flan) / Three-arched hill or Chaitya, with river, crescent and sun, within legend in Brahmi Rajna ksatrapasa Viradamaputrasa Rajno mahaksatrapasa Rudrasenasa.

Senior 354
Belisarius
Capture0004086.jpg
Drachm of Rudrasena II7 viewsDrachm of Rudrasena II as mahakshatrapa (great satrap). c. 256-274 CE (or Saka c. 178-196)

Bust of Rudrasena II right, with corrupted Greek legend (Indo-Greek style), date in Brahmi numerals behind (off flan) / Three-arched hill or Chaitya, with river, crescent and sun, within legend in Brahmi Rajna ksatrapasa Viradamaputrasa Rajno mahaksatrapasa Rudrasenasa.


Senior 354
Belisarius
Capture0004085.jpg
Drachm of Rudrasena II11 viewsDrachm of Rudrasena II as mahakshatrapa (great satrap). c. 256-274 CE (or Saka c. 178-196)

Bust of Rudrasena II right, with corrupted Greek legend (Indo-Greek style), date in Brahmi numerals behind (off flan) / Three-arched hill or Chaitya, with river, crescent and sun, within legend in Brahmi Rajna ksatrapasa Viradamaputrasa Rajno mahaksatrapasa Rudrasenasa.

Senior 354
Belisarius
Capture0004089.jpg
Drachm of Rudrasena III7 viewsDrachm of Rudrasena III as Mahaksatrapa (great satrap) c.348-378 CE (Saka: 270-300)

Bust of Rudrasena III right, with corrupted Greek legend (Indo-Greek style), date in Brahmi numerals behind (off flan) / Crescent on a hill over a wavy line, crescent in the left field and sun in the right field, Brahmi inscription Rana Mahaksatrapasa Svami Rudradamaputrasa Rajna Mahaksatrapasa Svami Rudrasenasa

14mm, 2 g. Jha&Rajgor 820-3; Senior 360.
Belisarius
Untitled-3.jpg
Drachm of Visvasena9 viewsDrachm of Visvasena as Kshatrapa (satrap), c.292-304 CE (Saka: 214-226)

Bust of Visvasena right, with corrupted Greek legend (Indo-Greek style), date in Brahmi numerals behind (off flan). Punchmark(s) on head/ / Three-arched hill or Chaitya, with river, crescent and sun, within legend in Brahmi: Rajno Mahaksatrapasa Bhartrdamaputrasa Rajno ksatrapasa Visvasenasa.

Senior 357.25
Belisarius
Tiberius___Germanicus_Gemellus__AD_19_(37-8)_and_19_(23-4),_respectively__Æ_Sestertius_(34mm,_24_74_g,_6h)__Rome_mint__100.jpg
Drusus (Caesar) Coin: Brass Sestertius 5 views(no legend) - Crossed cornucopias, each surmounted by the bareheaded bust of a boy facing one another; winged caduceus between
DRVSVS CAESAR TI AVG F DIVI AVG N PONT TR POT II around large SC. - Legend surrounding large S C
Exergue:



Mint: Rome (22-23 AD)
Wt./Size/Axis: 24.74g / 34mm / 6h
Rarity: Scarce
References:
RIC I 42 (Tiberius)
BMC Tiberius 95
CBN Tiberius 73
Provenances:
Richard Baker Collection
CNG
Acquisition/Sale: CNG Internet 435 #315

This issue, commemorating the birth of twin sons to Drusus Caesar and his wife Livia Drusilla (Livilla), was part of the series issued under the Tiberius in AD 22-23 to promote the imperial virtue and dynastic solidity of the emperor's family. Although Germanicus Gemellus died very young, his brother Tiberius lived into his adulthood, with the expectation that he would be heir to his grandfather following the premature death of his father, Drusus. In the later years of the emperor’s life, though, Gaius (Caligula) was often seen in close company with the emperor, while Tiberius Gemellus’s status was shrouded in obscurity. Thus, after the death of the emperor, Caligula, assisted by the Praetorian Prefect, Macro, quickly moved to take the purple. Upon the reading of the deceased emperor’s will, however, it was discovered that Tiberius intended for both Tiberius Gemellus and his cousin Gaius to be jointly elevated, and, moreover, that Gemellus was to be the senior partner. Under unknown authority, Caligula quickly had the will vacated, and, shortly thereafter, his cousin murdered.

This sestertius was struck in 22/23, nearly three years after the death of Germanicus, Tiberius’ nephew and first heir. In the
interim Tiberius had named no heir, but with the nine coins in his dated aes of 22/23 he announces a ‘Tiberian dynasty’
that includes his son Drusus, his daughter-in-law (and niece) Livilla, and his twin grandsons Tiberius Gemellus and
Germanicus Gemellus, whose heads decorate the crossed cornucopias on this sestertius.
Since it is the only coin in the aes of 22/23 without an obverse inscription, we must presume its design was believed
sufficient to communicate the fact that the twin boys were portrayed. Though this type usually is thought to celebrate the
birth of the twins, that event had occurred two and a half years before this coin was struck. Rather, it is best seen in light of
early Julio-Claudian dynastic rhetoric in which male heirs were celebrated as twins (even if they were not literally twins, or
even biological brothers) and were routinely likened to the Dioscuri, the heavenly twins Castor and Pollux.
The crossed-cornucopias design is familiar on ancient coinage, and here the cornucopias, grape clusters, grape leaves and
pine cones seemingly allude to Bacchus or Liber in a reference to fecundity. In terms of dynastic appeal, the design boasts
of the prosperity and fruitfulness of the Tiberian line, with the caduceus symbolizing Mercury as the messenger of the gods
and the bringer of good fortune.
Despite the hopefulness represented by this series of coins, tragedy struck on two fronts. The ‘Tiberian dynasty’ collapsed
within months of its being announced when both Drusus and his son Germanicus Gemellus (the boy whose head is shown
on the right cornucopia) died in 23.
Poor fates awaited the remaining two members: Drusus’ wife Livilla became increasingly associated with Tiberius’ prefect
Sejanus, and she died shamefully in the aftermath of his downfall in 31, and the second grandson, Tiberius Gemellus,
survived long enough to be named co-heir of Tiberius with Caligula, but after Tiberius’ death he was pushed into a
subsidiary role and soon was executed by Caligula, who would not tolerate a second heir to the throne.

The Caduceus between two cornucopia indicates Concord, and is found on medals of Augustus, M. Antony, Vespasian, Titus, Domitian, Nerva, Antoninus Pius, Marcus Aurelius, and Clodius Albinus in addition to this sestertius of Drusus.

Tiberius Julius Caesar Nero Gemellus, known Gemellus and his twin brother Tiberius Claudius Caesar Germanicus II Gemellus, were born on the 10th of October 19AD. They were the win sons of Drusus and Livilla, the grandson of the Emperor Tiberius, and the cousin of the Emperor Caligula. Gemellus is a nickname meaning “the twin”. Germanicus II Gemellus, died in early childhood in 23 AD whereas Nero Gemellus died 37 or 38AD perhaps on the orders of his cousin Caligula.

Gemellus’ father Drusus (also known as Castor) died mysteriously when Gemellus was only four. It is believed that Drusus died at the hands of the Praetorian Prefect, Lucius Aelius Sejanus. His mother Livilla was either put to death or committed suicide because she had been plotting with Sejanus to overthrow Tiberius, and also because she may have worked with Sejanus to poison her husband. Livilla had been Sejanus’ lover for a number of years before their deaths, and many including Tiberius believed that both Gemelli were really Sejanus’ sons.

We know very little about Gemellus’ life, since he was largely ignored by most of the Imperial family. When Gemellus was 12 years old, he was summoned to the island of Capri where Tiberius lived at that time, along with his cousin Caligula. Tiberius made both Caligula and Gemellus joint-heirs, but Caligula was the favorite.

After Tiberius died on March 16th, 37AD, Caligula became Emperor and adopted Gemellus as his son. Caligula soon thereafter ordered him killed in late 37 AD or early 38 AD . The allegation was plotting against Caligula while he was ill. Suetonius writes that Caligula ordered Gemellus killed.
Gary W2
EB0311b_scaled.JPG
EB0311 Gondophares I / Nike1 viewsGondophares I (ca 20-50 AD). AE24 Tetradrachm.
Obverse: Greek legend around diademed and bearded bust right.
Reverse: Winged Nike standing right with wreath and palm. Karosthi legend.
References: Cf. BMC 13; Pieper 290-295; Senior 212.1T.
Diameter: 24.5mm, Weight: 8.478g.
EB
EB0327b_scaled.JPG
EB0327 Rudrasena II / Chaitya2 viewsRudrasena II (255-278 CE). Western Kshatrapas, India, AR drm.
Obverse: Head of king right.
Reverse: Crescented three-arched hill (chaitya), river below, crescent moon at left, sun at right, Brahmi legend around.
References: Senior 354.26, Fishman 27.1.
Diameter: 15mm, Weight: 2.184g.
EB
EB0724_scaled.JPG
EB0724 Soter Megas / King on horseback8 viewsVima Taktu ("Soter Megas”), Taxila, Kushan Empire, Æ Tetradrachm, circa 80-90 AD.
Obverse: Diademed bust right, holding sceptre, tamgha to left.
Reverse: [CΩTHP] MEΓAC BACIΛEV [ΒΑCΙΛΥΩΝ], King on horseback, tamgha in right field.
References: Cf. Göbl, Kushan pl. 176, 19.1 var. (bust left); Senior B17.1; Donum Burns 58; MACW 2928,2953-56.
Diameter: 20mm, Weight: 8.371g.
EB
EB0725_scaled.JPG
EB0725 Soter Megas / King on horseback19 viewsVima Taktu ("Soter Megas”), Taxila, Kushan Empire, Æ Tetradrachm, circa 80-90 AD.
Obverse: Diademed radiate bust right, holding sceptre, tamgha to left.
Reverse: [CΩTHP] MEΓA BACIΛEV [ΒΑCΙΛΥΩΝ], King on horseback, tamgha in right field.
References: Cf. Göbl, Kushan pl. 176, 19.1 var. (bust left); Senior B17; Donum Burns 58; MACW 2928,2953-56.
Diameter: 20.5mm, Weight: 9.019g.
1 commentsEB
Faustina-sen_AR-Den_DIVA-FAV_STINA__AVG_V_STA_RIC-000_C-000_Q-001_18mm_3,06g-s~0.jpg
Faustina (I) Senior (100-141) AR denarius, AVGVSTA,179 viewsFaustina (I) Senior AR denarius
Wife of Antoninus Pius.
avers:- DIVA-FAV_STINA, Draped bust right.
revers:- AVG_V_STA, Juno standing left, holding torch and scepter. 141 (Rome).
date: 141 AD.
mint: Rome
diameter: 16-17mm
weight: 3,11g
ref: RIC-356 (Antoninus Pius) , C-96
Q-001
quadrans
Faustina_I_2a.jpg
Faustina I (Senior) * Vesta, 141-161 AD. AR Denarius66 views
Faustina I (Senior) * Vesta, Silver Denarius
‘In Honor & Remembrance of the beloved and deified Augusta.’

Obv: DIVA FAUSTINA * draped bust right.
Rev: AVGVSTA * Vesta standing left, holding simpulum in right hand, arm partially extended, and the palladium in her left, also partially extended.

Exergue: (Blank)

Mint: Rome
Struck: 148-161 AD.

Size: 18 mm.
Weight: 3.24 grams
Die axis: 180°

Condition: Very bright, clear luster and a pretty portrait despite the subtle effects of time and usage. Wonderful detail in the coiffure of piled & adorned hair. Greater wear evident to Vesta who nonetheless still reveals the numerous details the celator gave her. In all, a lovely & appealing coin.

Refs:*
Cohen, 108
RIC III, 368, page 71
SEAR RCV II (2002), 4587, page 269

Tiathena
faustina_I_04.jpg
Faustina I AR Denarius16 viewsObv: DIVA FAVSTINA - Bust draped right.
Rev: AETERNITAS - Juno standing right, head left, veiled, raising right hand and holding sceptre in left.
Mint: Rome
Date: After 141 AD
Ref: BMCRE 345, Cohen 26, RIC 344
oa
faustina_I_05.jpg
Faustina I AR Denarius18 viewsObv: DIVA FAVSTINA - Draped bust right.
Rev: AVGVSTA - Ceres standing to left, raising right hand and holding long torch with her left.
Date: After 141 AD
Mint: Rome
Ref: Cohen 101, RIC 361
oa
fas[1].jpg
Faustina I Senior, wife of Antoninus Pius. Died 141 CE. Posthumous issue.66 viewsAR Denarius (3.35 gm). 18.5 mm
Obverse: DIVA FAVSTINA, draped bust right.
Reverse: C-E-RES, Ceres, veiled, standing left, holding long torch and grain ears. RIC III 378 (Antoninus); BMCRE 461 (Antoninus); RSC 136.
NORMAN K
FAUSTSR-5.jpg
Faustina I, Senior. Wife of Antoninus Pius. Augusta 138-140/1 CE.214 viewsÆ Sestertius (32 mm, 24.57 gm).
Rome mint, 147-161 CE.
Obv: DIVA FAVSTINA, draped bust right.
Rev: AVGVSTA, Vesta, veiled, standing left, holding palladium and scepter, SC at sides.
RIC 1124; Sear 4617; BMC 1519; Cohen 110.
EmpressCollector
FAUSTSR-12.jpg
Faustina I, Senior. Wife of Antoninus Pius. Augusta 138-140/1 CE.247 viewsAR Denarius (19 mm, 3.47 gm).
Rome mint, 145 CE
Obv: DIVA AVG FAVSTINA, draped bust, r.
Rev: PIETAS AVG, Pietas standing l., sacrificing over candelabrum and holding box of incense.
RIC 395ca; Sear 4598v; Cohen 237
EmpressCollector
FAUSTINA_JNR_PEACOCK~0.JPG
FAUSTINA II, JUNIOR. Commemorative denarius of Rome. Struck A.D.176-180 under Marcus Aurelius.128 viewsObverse: DIVA FAVSTINA PIA. Draped bust of Faustina Junior facing right.
Reverse: CONSECRATIO. Peacock standing facing right.
Diameter: 18mm | Weight: 3.24gms | Die Axis: 12
RIC III : 744 | RSC : 71a

Annia Galeria Faustina was the youngest daughter of Antoninus Pius and Faustina Senior. She married Marcus Aurelius in A.D.145 and was given the title of Augusta on the birth of her first child in A.D.146. She went on to have several more children, one of whom was the future emperor Commodus. In A.D.175 Faustina accompanied Marcus Aurelius on his journey to the East but she died at Halala, a village at the foot of the Taurus Mountains.
1 comments*Alex
Faustina_RIC_1164.jpg
Faustina RIC 116417 viewsFaustina I. (Senior), As
Obv: DIVA FAVSTINA, draped bust right
Rev: AETERNITAS S-C, Providentia standing half right, head left, raising right hand and holding globe in left.
Size: 12.11g
Mint: Rome afer 146AD
Ids: Cohen 42, RIC 1164
1 commentsickster
Faustina.jpg
Faustina Senior 22 viewsAugusta 25 February 138 - early 141
AR Denarius, draped bust right
3.83 gm, 18 mm
Obv.: DIVA FAVSTINA
Rev.: AVGVSTA
Ceres standing left holding torch & scepter
RIC III 356, RSCII 96, BMCRE IV 399
Rome mint, 147 – 161 A.D.
Jaimelai
3910453.jpg
Faustina Senior25 viewsDiva Faustina Senior. Died AD 140/1. Æ Sestertius (33.5mm, 22.69 g, 6h). Rome mint. Struck under Antoninus Pius, circa AD 146-161. Draped bust right, wearing pearls bound on top of her head / AETERNITAS, S C in exergue, Faustina, holding scepter, seated right in carpentum drawn right by two elephants, which are ridden and led by mahouts. RIC III 1112 (Pius); Banti 26 (same dies as illustration). Fine, rough, green patina. Very rare with elephants right. Banti reports 13 examples with carpentum drawn left by two elephants, but only one example with carpentum drawn right.1 commentsecoli
diva1.jpg
Faustina Senior Ric III #394a RSC #23445 viewsObv:DIVAAVG-FAVSTINA
Rev:PIE-TASAVG
Pietas standing left dropping incense on altar.
My best example of Faustina Senior.
1 commentsnewone
FaustinaSen_Ses_RIC_1130.jpg
Faustina Senior (I) - sestertius RIC 1130 38 viewsFaustina Senior. Sestertius, minted in Rome, 146-161 A.D.; 25.01g; obv. DIVA FAVSTINA, draped bust right; rev. CONSECRATIO S-C, Vesta standing left, sacrificing from patera over altar to left & holding scepter. RIC 1130 (Pius), BMC 1529.

Ex F. R. Künker E-Auktion
1 commentsBartosz A
Faustina_Senior.jpg
Faustina Senior - RIC-344 (Pius)43 viewsWife of Antoninus Pius - AR denarius (17mm, 3.48g). Rome mint. Struck after her death in AD 141. DIVA FAVSTINA . Draped bust right / AETERNITAS. Aeternitas (or Juno) standing left, extending hand and holding sceptre. Ex ANS. Ex Lhotka. RSC 26; Sear 4574; BMCRE 345; RIC III 344 (Pius)Bud Stewart
Faustine HS.jpg
Faustina Senior - sestertius32 viewsDIVA AVGVSTA FAVSTINA , veiled and diademed bust r.
PIETAS AVG / S C , Pietas standing l., dropping incense on candelabrum and holding box of perfumes
Minted after 141.

Cohen 240
1 commentsGinolerhino
Sistertii_154.JPG
Faustina Senior AR Denarius, wife of Antoninus Pius, Rome 135-140 AD 37 viewsFaustina I "Augusta-Vesta" Antoninus Pius AD 138-(141 Faustina) 161 Silver Denarius. 3.34 gr.
Obv: DIVA FAVSTINA - Bust draped right. Rev: AVGVSTA - Vesta standing left, holding patera over lit altar and Palladium close to her side in other arm. Rome mint: AD 148-161 = RIC III
Antonio Protti
Sistertii_115.JPG
Faustina Senior AR Denarius, wife of Antoninus Pius, Rome 135-140 AD 32 viewsFaustina Sr AR Denarius, RIC 358, RSC 93, BMC 389
Faustina I AR Denarius. 2.72 gr. DIVA FAVSTINA, draped bust right, hair arranged in a chignon behind the head / AVGVSTA, Ceres standing right holding sceptre and ears of grain. RSC 93.
Antonio Protti
Sistertii_123.JPG
Faustina Senior AR Denarius, wife of Antoninus Pius, Rome 135-140 AD 23 viewsFaustina I Denarius. 2.90 gr. DIVA FAVSTINA, draped bust right / AETERNITAS, Aeternitas, veiled, standing front, head right, pulling veil from face & holding sceptre. RSC 40.
RIC 346a
Antonio Protti
sistertiii_169~0.JPG
Faustina Senior AR Denarius, wife of Antoninus Pius, Rome 135-140 AD 43 viewsRef Faustina Sr AR Denarius, RIC 343, RSC 1, BMC 339
Diva Faustina Sr 3.36 gr. AR Denarius. 150 AD. DIVA FAVSTINA, diademed & draped bust right / AED DIV FAVSTINAE, front view of temple of six columns on five steps, fencing before, statue of Faustina within. RIC 343, RSC 1. sear5 4573

Antonivs Protti
sistertiii_133.JPG
Faustina Senior Æ Sestertius, wife of Antoninus Pius, Rome 135-140 AD (29 mm- 22,83 gr.)44 viewsObv.: DIVA FAVSTINA- laureate head right;

Rev.: AVGVSTA, S-C in the field- Pietas standing left, sacrificing from raised hand over flaming altar at feet left, & holding box of incense. RIC 1127. Cohen 125, BMC 1523. Very Fine+/ Very Fine++.Dark (black) patina. Nice authentic coin! 11900
Antonio Protti
Faustina_Senior_Æ_Sestertius,_wife_of_Antoninus_Pius.jpg
Faustina Senior Æ Sestertius, wife of Antoninus Pius, Rome 135-140 AD (29 mm- 22,83 gr.)48 viewsObv.: DIVA FAVSTINA- laureate head right;
Rev.: AVGVSTA, S-C in the field- Pietas standing left, sacrificing from raised hand over flaming altar at feet left, & holding box of incense. RIC 1127. Cohen 125, BMC 1523. Very Fine+/ Very Fine++.Dark (black) patina. Nice authentic coin! 11900
Antonio Protti
Faustina_Vesta.jpg
Faustina Senior Consecratio Vesta 16 viewsDiva Faustina Senior (wife of Antoninus Pius), AD 147, DIVA FAVSTINA, draped bust right, rev CONSECRATIO S-C, Vesta standing left, sacrificing out of patera over lighted altar and holding long torch mattpat
faust1.jpg
Faustina Senior denarius30 viewsOb. DIVA FAVSTINA Diademed and draped bust right
Rev. CERES Ceres seated left, holding grain-ears and torch
Ref. RIC 378 BMC 461

-:Bacchus:-
Bacchus
faustina_senior.jpg
Faustina Senior Denarius15 viewsFaustina Senior denarius

Obv: Bust of Faustina right "DIVA FAVSTINA"

Rev: "AETERNITAS" Aeternitas standing front - head left with a veil blowing out around it. She holds a globe.

RSC 32

Adrian S
0454.jpg
Faustina Senior Denarius37 viewsFaustina Senior Denarius - Ceres Standing Adrian S
B-faustina_senior_01.jpg
Faustina Senior Sestertius50 viewsObv: DIVA FAVSTINA - Draped bust right.
Rev: AVGVSTA - Ceres standing left, holding a torch in each hand.
Cat #: RIC.1120
Weight: 24.00g
Notes: This coin is somewhat mysterious to me. Above I identify it as RIC.1120 which for reverse states "...torch in each hand". However, if you look at the picture of my coin (or compare it to, say: http://www.coinarchives.com/a/lotviewer.php?LotID=177916&AucID=226&Lot=751), what Ceres seems to be holding in the right hand does not look like a torch. In fact, it looks more so like Victory, but RIC does not seem to list this variant.
oa
faustina_senior.jpg
Faustina Senior Sestertius24 viewsOBV: DIVA FAVSTINA
diademed & draped bust right
REV: IVNO S-C, Juno standing left
holding patera & long scepter
32mm, 20.24g
RIC 1143, Cohen 210, BMC 1531
miffy
collage1~1.jpg
Faustina Senior, Aeternitas91 viewsO: DIVA - FAVSTINA
Draped bust right
R: AETER-NITAS
Aerternitas standing, facing, raising hand and holding scepter; Large S/C in left/right fields

Ae As; 10.64g; 26-27mm
RIC 1102, BMC 1481, C 28
arizonarobin
collage2~1.jpg
Faustina Senior, Aeternitas61 viewsDIVA AVG - FAVSTINA
Draped bust right

AETERNITAS
Aeternitas seated left, holding Phoenix on globe and scepter
SC in exergue

RIC1103b (variant)- RIC only lists as Sesterius; Cohen 16 var (AE As, but obv. legend without AVG)
wildwinds example (this coin)
Ae As; 10.46g; 24mm
arizonarobin
collage~8.jpg
Faustina Senior, Aeternitas90 viewsFAUSTINA SENIOR
wife of Antoninus Pius

DIVA-FAVSTINA
Draped bust right

AETER-NITAS
Throne with sceptre and peacock
AR Denarius;3.18g;18mm
RIC 353a, C 61
3 commentsarizonarobin
faustinasr3422.jpg
Faustina Senior, Aeternitas36 viewsDIVA FAVSTINA
draped bust right

AETERNITAS
SC in ex, Aeternitas seasted left on globe, holding scepter

Æ Dupondius; 10.58g
RIC 1159, Cohen 22, BMC 1551
arizonarobin
2013-05-04_may_coins_2013.jpg
Faustina Senior, Aeternitas59 viewsDIVA AVG FAVSTINA
Veiled bust draped right

AETERNITAS
Eight rayed star

Ar Denarius; 2.8g
Rome mint: AD 142; RIC 355
Ex-/jean Elsen
7 commentsRobin Ayers
FaustinaSr1.jpg
Faustina Senior, Altar48 viewsDIVA AVGVS-TA FAVSTINA
Obverse: Draped bust right, hair coiled on top of head

PIET-AVG
Reverse: Altar with closed doors

SC under altar


RIC 1191, S 4654, C258
AE As;11.82g / 27mm
2 commentsarizonarobin
collage3~1.jpg
Faustina Senior, Ceres52 viewsO: DIVA - FAVSTINA
Draped bust right
R: AVGVSTA
Ceres standing left, holding torch and raising skirt

RIC 362, BMC 421, S 4584, C 104
Ar Denarius; 17-18mm; 3.25g
arizonarobin
collage~7.jpg
Faustina Senior, Ceres89 viewsFaustina I, Ar Denarius

O: DIVA-FAVSTINA
bust r., draped, hair waved and coiled on top of head
R: AVGV-STA
Ceres, veiled, standing l., holding corn-ears and torch

RIC 71, 360. Cohen 78.
Prov. Maridvnvm
3.01g17mm
2 commentsarizonarobin
FaustinaIveiled.jpg
Faustina Senior, Ceres 21 viewsFaustina I
Ar denarius; 3.18g; 17mm

DIVA FAVSTINA,
draped bust right

AVGVSTA,
Ceres standing left, holding short torch and sceptre

RIC 362var (veil);RSC104a
3 commentsRobin Ayers
faustinasr2332.jpg
Faustina Senior, CONCORDIAE32 views

DIVA AVG FAVSTINA
draped bust right, hair in stephane

CONCORDIAE
Antoninus Pius standing right, holding scroll, clasping right hands with Faustina Senior standing left, holding scepter

RIC 381b, RSC 159, BMC 298, RSC 159
Ar Denarius, 2.75g
arizonarobin
faustinasr091708a.jpg
Faustina Senior, Concorida50 viewsFAVSTINA-AVGVSTA
draped bust right

CONCOR-DIA AVG
Concordia standing front, head left, holding patera and cornucopiae

RIC 335; RSC 151
wildwinds example
Ar Denarius;18mm;3.03g
1 commentsarizonarobin
1-faustinagof.jpg
Faustina Senior, Girls of Faustina37 viewsAr denarius; 16-17mm; 2.63g
DIVA AVG FAVSTINA
draped bust right

PVELLAE FAVSTINIANAE
official seated left on a platform, leaning forward to hand rolled document to a young girl being held aloft towards him by a man standing before the platform; second official standing left behind the first, pointing towards the document; directly below the officials, second citizen bending to lift up second girl in order to present her to the officials.

RIC III 399a (Pius); RSC 262
Ex-CNG

The reverse of this piece commemorates the Girls of Faustina, a young women’s charity established by Antoninus in memory of his late wife.
3 commentsRobin Ayers
faustina090608a.jpg
Faustina Senior, Juno34 viewsAR Denarius
3.26g;16-17mm

DIVA FAVSTINA
Draped bust right

AVGVSTA
Juno veiled, seated right, holding scepter

RIC III 363; RSC II 120, BMC 428; Sear 4585
arizonarobin
collage4~0.jpg
Faustina Senior, Peacock84 viewsO: DIVA FAV-STINA
Draped bust right
R: CONSECRATIO
Peacock walking right

RIC 384, RSC 175, BMCRE 473, S 4594
Ar Denarius; 18-20mm; 3.05g
Prov. Barry P. Murphy
1 commentsarizonarobin
FaustIAvg.JPG
Faustina Senior, Rome, after 141 AD24 viewsDIVA FASTINA (sic)
Draped bust right
AVGVSTA
Ceres standling left holding grain and long torch
RIC 360, BMC 408, C 78
The misspelling of FAVSTINA is apparently not published.
whitetd49
collage3~7.jpg
Faustina Senior, temple68 viewsDIVA - FAVSTINA
Draped bust right

AED DIV FAVSTINAE
Temple with six columns, Faustina within

RIC 343, S 4573, C1 (Rome year 150)
Ar Denarius; 18mm; 3.20g
1 commentsarizonarobin
collage3~6.jpg
Faustina Senior, Vesta84 views AE Dupondius; 11.73g; 27-28mm

DIVA-FAVSTINA
Draped and veiled bust right

CONSECRATIO S-C
Vesta standing left, sacrificing from patera over altar to left & holding scepter. torch

RIC 1187v, Cohen 163v, (Var for veiled bust)
arizonarobin
bor1.JPG
FAUSTINA SENIOR, wife of Antoninus Pius, AD 138-161. AE As (7.08gm)12 viewsFAUSTINA SENIOR, wife of Antoninus Pius, AD 138-161. AE As (25mm, 7.08gm)
Obv. DIVA AVGUSTA FAUSTINA . Draped bust right
Rev. Uncertain legend, S-C, Uncertain deity with altar left.
UK Detector find.
Lee S
FavsSe05-2.jpg
Faustina Sr, RIC (A. Pius) 1143, sestertius of AD 147-161 16 viewsÆ Sestertius (25.5g, Ø32mm, 12h). Rome mint. Struck AD 141-161 (under Antoninus Pius).
Obv.: DIVA - FAVSTINA, Draped bust of Diva Faustina senior right with hair waved, adorned with pearls and curled on top.
Rev.: IVNO around, S C across field, Juno standing left right holding patera left long sceptre.
RIC (Antoninus Pius) 1143; Cohen 210; Sear (Roman Coins and their Values II) 4629.
Charles S
FAVSSE07~0.JPG
Faustina Sr, RIC (A. Pius) 1148, sestertius of AD 14226 viewsÆ sestertius (29.73g, 12h). Rome mint. Struck under Antoninus Pius, AD 142.
Obv.: DIVA AVGVS-TA FAVSTINA Draped bust of Diva Faustina senior facing right
Rev.: PIETA[S AVG] around, S C in ex., Hexastyle temple with on the roof a quadriga and victories holding a globe above their heads on each side.
RIC (A. Pius) 1148 (rare); Cohen 254; BMCRE 1454; Strack 1245; Banti (I Grandi Bronzi Imperiali III-1) 96 (7 spec.); Sear (Roman Coins and their Values II) 4632; Foss (Roman Historical Coins) 126:34e
ex Jean Elsen (Bruxelles), Auction 95; ex coll. A. Senden: l'architecture des monnaies Romaines

Issued on the dedication of a temple to Faustina upon her death in A.D. 141
Charles S
favsse12b.jpg
Faustina Sr, RIC (A. Pius) 1148, sestertius of AD 14223 viewsÆ sestertius (23.9g, Ø 31mm, 12h). Rome mint. Struck under Antoninus Pius, AD 1421.
Obv.: DIVA AVGVSTA FAVSTINA Draped bust of Diva Faustina senior right with hair waved, adorned with pearls and curled on top.
Rev.: PIETAS AVG (around) S C (in ex.), hexastyle temple with stairs, central dot between the columns; on the roof a quadriga and victories holding a globe above their heads on each side; four standing and two reclining figures in the pediment.
RIC (A. Pius) 1148 (R), Cohen 254, BMCRE 1454; Strack 1245; Banti (I Grandi Bronzi Imperiali III-1) 96 (7 spec.); Sear (Roman Coins and their Values II) 4632; Foss (Roman Historical Coins) 126:34e

ex José A. Herrero, S.A., auction dec. 14 (2014).

Issued on the dedication of a temple to Faustina upon her death in A.D. 141
Charles S
Fouree_denarius_of_Faustina_Senior_(died_141_AD),~0.jpg
Fouree denarius of Faustina Senior (died 141 AD), Roman Empire30 viewsFouree denarius of Faustina Senior (died 141 AD), Roman Empire
Minted after 141 AD. DIVA FAVSTINA on obv., her veiled bust facing right. AVGVSTA reverse, with Faustina standing, holding globe and shield. With most of the original silvering still intact, very attractive.17mm, 2.8grams.
Fouree coins were produced by ancient counterfeiters by putting a bronze flan between two thin sheets of silver foil and striking the with fake dies. They were very common in 1st-3rd centuies AD, but the silver came off fairly easily, and most of the preserved fourees are just copper cores.
Faustina Senior (wife of Antoninus Pius, d. 141 AD)
Antonio Protti
Coin1001_quad_sm.jpg
Galerius Concordia Militum Ӕ post-reform radiate fraction (295 - 299), Cyzicus mint1 viewsGAL VAL MAXIMIANVS NOB CAES, radiate, draped (?) and cuirassed bust right / CONCORDIA MI-LITVM + KB in lower centre, Prince (the left figure) standing right in military dress, holding parazonium or baton of imperium, receiving small Victory with a wreath and palm branch on globe from naked Jupiter (the right figure) standing left holding tall scepter.

Ӕ, 20mm, 2.36g, die axis 6h, base metal seems red, high copper content.

Galerius ruled as Caesar from 293 to 305, but most sources give minting years for this type of coin as 295-299.

RIC VI Cyzicus 19b (18b?), Sear 3713. 19b has cuirassed and draped bust, 18b -- only cuirassed. I think the edge of the military cape on the shoulder means it is draped in this case, but distinction seems very vague to me. Looking at coins identified as 18b and 19b I cannot see any clear pattern, it seems that many are confused in this respect just like myself.

GALerius VALerius MAXIMIANUS NOBilitas CAESar (in this era the title of "junior" emperor while Augustus was a "senior" one), CONCORDIA MILITVM = [Dedicated to] harmony with the soldiers, K = Kysikos (Cyzicus) mint, B = officina Beta (workshop #2). The figure to the right is naked except for a cape, so it is a god, the sceptre points to him being Jupiter, the ruler of gods. Jupiter is also typically associated with Victory, he was often depicted with Victory in the right hand and sceptre in the left. The line across his head probably designates a wreath, also a common feature of Jupiter. Victory holds her common attributes, the triumphal wreath and a palm branch, the orb she stands on represents the world (thus meaning dominion over it). Round Earth was a firmly established concept in Roman times. The left figure, the prince (Galerius in this case) is identified by his full battle dress and the hand-held short elongated shape, which is either the ivory baton of imperium (the high command) or, more likely, a parazonium, a long triangular dagger, typically cradled in the bearer's left arm. A Roman parazonium blade tended to be leaf shape and approximately 15"-19" long. It was a ceremonial weapon, a mark of high rank, used to rally the troops.

GALERIUS, * c. 250, near Serdica, Dacia Ripensis (Sofia, Bulgaria) or in a Dacian place later called Felix Romuliana (Gamzigrad, Serbia) † late Apr or early May 311 (aged ~60), Serdica, Dacia Ripensis (Sofia, Bulgaria) ‡ 1 Mar or 21 May 293 – 1 May 305 (as Eastern Caesar, under Diocletian), 1 May 305 – late Apr or early May 311 (as Eastern Augustus with many co-emperors).

Galerius was born of humble parentage and had a distinguished military career. On March 1, 293, he was nominated as Caesar by Diocletian, the supreme ruler of the empire, to help him govern the East. Galerius divorced his wife and married Diocletian’s daughter, Valeria. After ruling from Egypt from 293 to 295, Galerius assumed command of defensive operations against the Sasanians in 297. After being defeated, he then won a decisive victory that increased his influence with Diocletian. Galerius next proceeded to the Balkans and won numerous victories in the region. A staunch pagan, he persuaded the emperor to initiate the persecution of the Christians at Nicomedia in 303.

When Diocletian abdicated on May 1, 305, Galerius became Augustus of the East, ruling the Balkans and Anatolia. Since Galerius had arranged the appointment of two of his favourites, Maximinus (his nephew) and Flavius Valerius Severus, to be Caesars in both East and West, he was in effect the supreme ruler. When Constantius Chlorus died in 306, Galerius insisted that Severus govern the West as Augustus, but he grudgingly conceded the subordinate title of caesar to Chlorus’s son, Constantine, who was correctly suspected of Christian sympathies. Galerius’s supremacy was, however, short-lived. Severus was soon overthrown (306) and killed by Maxentius (son of the former emperor Maximian). Galerius invaded Italy but was forced to retreat. In 308 he induced Diocletian and Maximian to meet him at Carnuntum on the Danube and to declare Maxentius a usurper. On November 11, Galerius proclaimed as Augustus of the West his friend Licinius, who had effective control only in the region of the Danube.

A ruthless ruler, Galerius imposed the poll tax on the urban population and maintained the persecution of the Christians. In the winter of 310–311, however, he became incapacitated with a horrible disease. Fearing, perhaps, that his illness was the vengeance of the Christian God, he issued on April 30, 311, an edict grudgingly granting toleration. Shortly afterward he died. He was succeeded by his nephew Maximinus Daia.

Diocletian's money reform of 293.

Trying to fight the runaway inflation that he did not understand and to return people's faith in Roman coins, Diocletian did a complete overhaul of the Roman monetary system. He introduced a new theoretical base monetary unit called the denarius communis or d.c. (only rarely represented by actual coins, one example being old pre-Aurelian antoniniani still in circulation, valued now at 1 d. c., another – minted only on a small scale 1.5g coin with the reverse legend VTILITAS PVBLICA, "for public use"). Then he started minting new types of coins including a gold aureus of new purity and weight standard (1/60 pound of pure gold), a quality silver coin, argenteus, roughly similar to the early imperial denarius in size and weight, a new billon coin, of a copper alloy but with a small fraction of silver mostly in the form of coating, roughly similar to the old antoninianus when it was just introduced, however bearing now a laureate rather than a radiate bust. This type of coin is now commonly referred to as a follis or a nummus. Finally, a new radiate bronze coin, now referred to as a "radiate fraction" or a radiatus was introduced, similar to the early imperial aes in value, but much smaller in weight and size. There were also rare issues of ½ and ¼ nummus coins, mostly in connection to some celebration. Interestingly, the obverses of these new coins were chosen to represent some identical "generic" image of a "good emperor" independent of the actual likeness of the August or Caesar in whose name they were issued, thus affirming the unity of all the tetrarchy rulers. Very roughly one may think of a new radiatus as a price of one loaf of bread, a new argenteus as a very good daily wage, and a new aureus as a price of a good horse. An approximate relationship between these units was as follows: 1 aureus ≈ 20 argentei ≈ 1000 d.c. (some scholars prefer 25 argentei and 1250 d.c.); 1 argenteus ≈ 5 nummi ≈ 50 d.c.; 1 nummus ≈ 5 radiati ≈ 10 d.c.; 1 radiatus ≈ 2 d.c. Of course we know that this reform was ineffective and inflation continued, so all these values were constantly shifting due to changing markets. Diocletian himself stopped minting argenteus in c. 305, and Constantine in his monetary reforms only re-established a new and highly successful gold standard, solidus (1/72 pound of pure gold, surprisingly actually first introduced also by Diocletian in 301, but only as a pilot version). As for billon and bronze coins, "folles" or "nummi", they were minted in all shapes and sizes all over the 4th century, often horribly debased by inflation, and their values at each point can only be guessed. It seems that in later times up to 1000 small bronze coins were sealed in a leather pouch to produce a reasonable unit of payment, thus giving rise to the name follis (lit. "bag" in Latin), which is now anachronistically applied to many billon and bronze coins of the late 3d and 4th century.
Yurii P
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Geta RIC IV, 7938 viewsGeta, AD 209-211
AR - denar, 19.8mm, 3.02g, 0°
Rome, AD 211
obv. P SEPT GETA PIVS AVG BRIT
laureate head, bearded, r.
rev. TR P III COS II PP
Janus(?), in himation, nude to waist, draping over l. arm, stg. frontal, his two faces looking r. and l., holding in l. arm thunderbolt
and resting with raised r. hand on reversed spear
ref. RIC IV/1, 79; C. 197; BMCR 13
VF, slightly toned
From Forum Ancient Coins, thanks!

With the thunderbolt Janus strongly resembles Jupiter. Cohen writes 'Janus or Jupiter'. Mattingly (BMCR): The 'Janus' with thunderbolt and sceptre is certainly a fanciful expression of the duality of the Empire. The imperial Jupiter is now 'biceps'. It was assuredly a fancy that pleased Geta more than his brother. Caracalla hated the idea of full equality of rule and was always insisting on his own seniority. In the long run he was unwilling to brook a colleague on any terms.
For more information please take a look at the referring article in the Mythology Thread (coming soon!)
3 commentsJochen
gondophares_tetra_mio1.JPG
Greek, Indo-Parthian, Gondophares, AR Tetradrachm, AD.20-50.57 viewsObverse: BASILEWN BASILEWN MEGA GONDOFERROU. King on horseback right with arm raised, cloak billowing behind, 'Gondopharan' symbol in right field.
Reverse: Kharosthi legend "Maharaja rajaraja mahata dhramia devavrata Gugupharasa", Shiva standing facing holding trident in left hand, right hand raised; Whitehead monograms 7 and 4 to left and right.
9.52gms, 23.77mm.

Whitehead 45/46; Senior ISCH 217.
anthivs
herm.jpg
Hermaios (90-70 B.C.)40 viewsIndo-Greek Kingdom
Imitation
AR Drachm
O: BASILEUS SUTHPOS EPMAIOY; Draped and diademed bust of Hermaios right. 
R: 'Maharaja Tratarasa Hermayasa' in Kharosthi script; Zeus enthroned left and holding sceptre, Monogram in left field.
2g
17mm
Bopearachchi Series 15C, 91; Senior issue 36
3 commentsMat
1364_Hermaios.jpg
Hermaios - AE tetradrachm7 viewsGondophares in the name of Hermaios
Indo-Scythian kingdom

Gandhara (Taxila?)
c. 30-10 BC
diademed and draped bust right
ΒΑΣΙΛΕΩΣ ΣΩTHPOΣ / EPMAIOY
Zeus seated half left, wearing himation, raised hand, holding scepter
Maharaajasa tratarasa Heramayasa (of Great King Hermaios the Savior)
Senior Hermaios 42aT.1, Mitchiner IGIS 421b, Mitchiner ACW 2045, SNG ANS 1430 ff., Bopearachchi series 20, HGC 12 308
ex Savoca
Johny SYSEL
Traianus-Denar-DIVVSPATERTRAIANVS-RIC251.jpg
II-TRAIANUS -a - Denar WOYTEK 040120 viewsAv) IMP TRAIANVS AVG GER DAC PM TRP COS VI PP
Laureate bust with drapea on left shoulder right

Rv) DIVVS PATER TRAIAN
Traianus Senior sitting on curulian chair left, holding patera and sceptre

Weight: 3,3g; Ø: 19mm; Reference: RIC II/ 251; WOYTEK page 393/Nr.:401; ROME mint, struck 112-113 A.D.

sulcipius
azes_k~0.jpg
INDIA, Indo-Scythian Kings. Azes I.9 viewsAR Drachm, 2.1g, 15mm, 3h. Ca 57-30 BC.
Obv.: BAΣIΛEΩΣ BAΣIΛEΩN MEΓAΛOY / AZOY; Emperor on horseback right, holding whip and raising right hand, bow on his back. Karosthi letter in right field.
Rev.: MAHARAJASA RAJARAJASA MAHATASA AYASA; Zeus standing left, holding long scepter and Nike, monograms in right and left fields.
Reference: Senior type 105, 17-23-35
John Anthony
1292_azes_II_ges.jpg
INDIA, Indo-Scythians, Azes II, AE Hexa-chalcon, 35 - 12 BC.9 viewsObv: BAΣIΛEΩΣ BAΣIΛEΩN MEΓAΛOY / AZOY. Humped bukk standing right, monogram above.
Rev: Lion standing right, monograms above, Kharoshthi legend around.

Azes II (reigned c. 35–12 BC), may have been the last Scythian king in Gandhara, western Pakistan. However, due to new research by R. C. Senior, his actual existence is now seriously in doubt, and "his" coins, etc., are now thought to refer to those of Azes I.
Azes I (c.48 BC – 25 BC) was an Indo-Scythian ruler who completed the domination of the Scythians in Gandhara.
Franz-Josef M
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INDIA, Kushan Empire, Soter Megas (Vima Takto), AE Tetradrachm, c.A.D.80 - 100.112 viewsSoter Megas (Vima Takto) AE Tetradrachm, 80-100 AD.
Obv: No legend, radiate, diademed, and draped bust right, holding scepter, three-pronged tamgha behind.
Rev: BASILEVC BASILEWN CWTHR MEGAC, King riding right on horseback, holding sceptre; three-pronged symbol of Soter Megas to right.
Senior B17.
2 commentsJericho
vima_takto_k.jpg
INDIA, Kushan Empire. Vima Takto (Soter Megas)8 viewsÆ Tetradrachm, 21mm, 8.5g, 12h; c. AD 80-100.
Obv.: Radiate and diademed bust right, holding scepter; tamgha behind.
Rev.: BACIΛЄV BACIΛЄVΩN CΩTHP MЄΓAC; Vima Takto on horseback right, holding axe; tamgha to lower right.
Reference: Senior B17.1vT
John Anthony
Gondophares-Sases.jpg
Indo Parthian - Gondophares-Sases (21-40 AD)8 viewsMetal/Size: AE12; Weight: 2.5 grams; Denomination: Unknown; Mint: Panthakot; Date: 21-40 AD; Obverse: Bearded head of king right. Reverse: Karosthi legend ("Maharajasa magatasa (or tradatasa) Gudapharasa) around, Athena standing right, shield on left arm, wielding thunderbolt with right hand; Arian letters ho and stra to left and right. Reference: Senior #246.museumguy
azes20-1.png
Indo Scythian, Aspavarma,Son of Indravarma 5-35AD19 viewsObv. King on horseback right holding up hand
Rev. Pallas standing right holding shield
Mitchiner MAW 2489, Volume 7#8987i ; Senior 183.613
9.93 gr. 19 mm.
Skyler
gondopores_i_res.jpg
INDO-PARTHIAN, GONDOPHARID DYNASTY, GONDOPHARES27 viewsGondophares
ca. 40 BC - 5 BC; or possibly 5 BC - 20 AD
AR Tetradrachm 22.5 mm, 8.5 g
O: King mounted with arm raised, right; 'Gondopharan' symbol with pellet in right field.
R: Zeus right; Monogram to left, and Kharosthi control letters Vhre and Bu to right. Small Nandipada symbol below sceptre.
Senior ISCH 220.11T
Gandhara
laney
IMGP0239_Pakbrtdrcombo(1).jpg
Indo-Parthians, Orthagnes, Gondopharid Dynasty, 1st half of 1st cent. AD13 viewsAE tdr, 8,56gr, 22mm;
Senior 257, 21-22; Mitch. ACW 2556;
mint: Arachiosa, axis: 9h;
obv.: bare-headed bust, left, w/diadem, triangular bow, and ribbons; medium-long hair in bun at the side, mustache, short beard; chain-link type necklace; cuirass/tunic, torso facing; circular lettering around rim;
rev.: winged Nike, standing right, w/diadem in extended hand; 2 control marks in lower right and left field; circular Karoshti legend around rim;

ex: CNG e-Auction 241, #180.
Schatz
IMGP0382Paktdrcombo.jpg
Indo-Parthians: Pakoros, mid to late 1st cent. AD, Gondopharid Dynasty28 viewsAE unit, 10,26gr, 26mm;
Senior 269 1aT
mint: unknown in Arachiosa, axis: 13h;
obv.: bust, left, w/diadem and 2 ribbons linked at end; large tuft of top hair, large bunch of curls in back of neck, mustache, med.-long beard; 2-stand necklace w/center medallion; padded (?) shoulder armor; around rim Greek legend: BAΣIΛE ... rest barely legible;
rev: winged Nike, standing right, holding out diadem; ‘gi’ in Karoshti to left, ‘pu’ to right; around rim Karoshti legend;
black surfaces on both sides;

ex: CNG e-Auction 409, # 358; ex: Dr. Wilfried Pieper Collection.
1 commentsSchatz
INDO-SCHYTHIAN,_AZES_II,_35_BC-_2_AD,_Silver_Tetradrachm_XF.jpg
INDO-SCHYTHIAN, AZES II, 35 BC- 2 AD, AR TETRA41 viewsINDO-SCHYTHIAN, AZES II, 35 BC- 2 AD, DEFINITIVE COINAGE NORTH-EASTERN PROVINCES, CIRCA 20-1 BC, AR TETRADRACHM, 8.78 GRAMS, 26 MM ,TYPE OF PALLAS REVERSE RIGHT HAND OUTSTRETCHED; MINTED IN TAXILA SIRSUKH (B), MITCHINER vol 6, MIG TYPE 846d , SENIOR GROUP 4, 98.104T, IN SUPERB XF CONDITION. _12000Antonivs Protti
Indoscyth.jpg
Indo-Scythian32 viewsAzes II (35-5 BCE)
Zeus standing, left, with Nike on his arm. Altar or pomegranite in left field. Kharosthi "E" in field. Kharosthi legend./King on horseback, right. Corrupt Greek legend.
Billion drachm.
Senior ISCH 105 type
Belisarius
Azes_1.jpg
Indo-Scythian - Azes I (58-12 BCE)9 viewsMetal/Size: AR 15 mm; Weight: 2.37 grams; Denomination: Drachm; Mint: Uncertain Mint in Western Gandhara Region; Date: 58-15 BCE; Obverse: King on horseback riding right, wearing cataphractus and holding whip or according to Hoover an elephant goad - 'BAΣIΛEΩΣ BAΣIΛEΩN MAΓAΛOΥ AZOΥ' (King of Kings Azes the Great). Reverse: Zeus Nikephoros standing left, holding Nike and scepter - Kharoshthi letter dhram right. References: Senior #105var.museumguy
Azes.jpg
Indo-Scythian - Azes I (58-12 BCE)11 viewsMetal/Size: AR 15 mm; Weight: 2.19 grams; Denomination: Drachm; Mint: Uncertain Mint in Western Gandhara Region; Date: 58-12 BCE; Obverse: King on horseback riding right, wearing cataphractus and holding whip or according to Hoover an elephant goad - 'BAΣIΛEΩΣ BAΣIΛEΩN MAΓAΛOΥ AZOΥ' (King of Kings Azes the Great) - Kharoshthi letter to right. Reverse: Zeus Nikephoros standing left, holding Nike and scepter - Kharoshthi symbols to left and right. References: Senior #105var.museumguy
Indo-Scythian.jpg
Indo-Scythian - Azes I (58-12 BCE)9 viewsMetal/Size: AR 23 mm; Weight: 9.6 grams; Denomination: Tetradrachm; Mint: Uncertain Mint in Western Gandhara Region; Date: Probably struck under Vijayamitra c. 12 BC to AD 15; Obverse: King on horseback riding right, wearing cataphractus and holding elephant goad - 'BAΣIΛEΩΣ BAΣIΛEΩN MAΓAΛOΥ AZOΥ' (King of Kings Azes the Great). Reverse: Kharoshthi letters surround (Maharajasa rajadirajasa mahatmas Ayasa (of Great King, King of Kings Azes the Great) - Pallas Athena standing right holding spear and shield and making benediction gesture. Nandipada and Kharoshthi letter to left. Monogram to right. Legends generally corrupt. References: Hoover P. 253, #716; ISCH 2. 175.10-405T; Senior #98v; MIG #847d.museumguy
Azilises_I.jpg
Indo-Scythian - Azilises (57-35 BCE)12 viewsMetal/Size: AE 23 x 24 mm; Weight: 7.15 grams; Denomination: Trichalkon; Mint: Uncertain Mint in the paropamisadai or Gandhara; Date: 57-35 BCE; Obverse: Armored Scythian king mounted on horse, right, carrying whip and holding spear - name of king surrounds (Great King Azilises) - symbol in front of horse's chest and one behind head of rider. Reverse: Humped bull (zebu) standing right. Kharosthi letters surround - box-like symbol above bull. References: Senior #58.2; Mitchiner Volume 6, Type 769 (Western Mint) or Type 807 (Eastern Mint), MIG #807.
museumguy
azes_k~1.jpg
Indo-Scythian Kings. Azes I, c. 57-12 BC.12 viewsAR Tetradrachm, 23mm, 9.8g, 3h.
Obv.: BAΣIΛEΩΣ BAΣIΛEΩN MEΓAΛOΥ / AZOΥ; King on horseback right, holding spear; Karosthi letter ba in right field.
Rev.: MAHARAJASA RAJARAJASA MAHATASA AYASA, in Karosthi; Zeus Nikephoros standing left; monogram in left field, monogram and Karosthi letter ba in right field.
Reference: cf. Senior type 105ff. / 17-103-76
John Anthony
Hoover-640.jpg
Indo-Scythian: Azes I (ca. 58-12 BCE) AR Drachm (Hoover-640; MACW-737a; Senior-76)32 viewsObv: ΒΑΣΙΛΕΩΣ ΒΑΣΙΛΕΩΝ ΜΕΓ ΑΛΟΥ ΑΖΟΥ; Diademed Zeus standing left holding scepter and making benediction gesture
Rev: 𐨨𐨺𐨱𐨪𐨗𐨮 𐨪𐨗𐨪𐨗𐨮 𐨨𐨱𐨺𐨟𐨮 𐨀𐨩𐨮; Nike standing right holding wreath and filleted palm branch. Monogram of Taxila to right
SpongeBob
Senior-50_1T.jpg
Indo-Scythian: Azilizes (ca. 85-45/35 BCE) AR Tetradrachm (Senior 50.1T)31 viewsObv: BAΣIΛEΩΣ BAΣIΛEΩN MEΓAΛOY AZIΛIΣOY; King on horseback right, holding spear
Rev: 𐨨𐨺𐨱𐨪𐨗𐨮 𐨪𐨗𐨪𐨗𐨮 𐨨𐨱𐨺𐨟𐨮 𐨀𐨩𐨁𐨬𐨁𐨖𐨮 (Majarajasa rajarajasa mahatasa Ayalishasa); Athena standing left, holding shield with aegis and thunderbolt; monograms in fields
Quant.Geek
MACW-2191.jpg
Indo-Scythian: Maues (85-80BC) Dichalkon (MACW-2191, Senior-6.1)27 viewsObv: Horse trotting right; Greek legend on left and right: ΒΑΣΙΛΕΩΣ ΜΑΥΟΥ
Rev: Bow Quiver with monogram on the left; Kharosthi legend on left and right: Maharajasa Moasa
SpongeBob
Indo_Scythians,_Kharahostes.jpg
INDO-SCYTHIANS - Kharahostes12 viewsINDO-SCYTHIANS - Kharahostes, ca. 20-1 B.C. Most surrounding legends gone; AE Square Unit. Obv.: [XAPAHWCTEI CATPAPEI APTAYOY], king on horseback right; uncertain Kharosthi letter to right. Rev.: Lion to right; Kharosthi letter and X in fields. Reference: Senior 143.dpaul7
spal_k.jpg
Indo-Scythians, Spalahores, c. 75-65 BC, with Spalagadames7 viewsÆ hemiobol, 8.5g, 22mm; c. 75-65 BC
Obv.: CΠAΛYPIOC ΔIKAIOY AΔEΛΦOY TOY BACIΛEΩC (of Spalyrises, the just, the brother of the king). Horseman right.
Rev.: Kharosthi legend citing Spalagadames as "son of Spalahores". Herakles seated left on rock, resting club on knee; control symbol at lower left.
Reference: BMC p. 100, 1 and pl. XXI, 12; MACW 2167;Senior 69.1.
Notes: jwt
John Anthony
azes_lion_bull_RESxxx.jpg
INDO-SCYTHIANS--AZES19 viewsca. 58 - 20 BC
AE 30.5 mm max; 12.16 g
O: Brahma bull right; monograms above and before
R: Lion right; monogram above. RAJADIRAJASA LEGEND
Senior 102.111; (Senior lists more than 80 combinations of obv. Rev. monograms for this type; Senior also doubts existence of Azes II, and attributes these coins to Azes I).
laney
azes_bull_lion_resbXxx.jpg
INDO-SCYTHIANS--AZES19 viewsca. 58 - 20 BC
AE 27 mm; 14.49 g
O: Brahma bull right; monograms above and before
R: Lion right; monogram above. RAJADIRAJASA LEGEND
Senior 102.111; (Senior lists more than 80 combinations of obv. Rev. monograms for this type; Senior also doubts existence of Azes II, and attributes these coins to Azes I).
laney
Spalahores_res~0.jpg
INDO-SCYTHIANS--SPALAHORES (SPALIRISES) with SPALAGADAMES21 views75 - 65 BC
AE Hemiobol 22 mm sq; 7.26 g
O: CΠAΛYPIOC ΔIKAIOY AΔEΛΦOY TOY BACIΛEWC ("of Spalyrises, the just, the brother of the king"). Horseman right.
R: Kharosthi legend citing Spalagadames as "son of Spalahores". Herakles seated left on rock, resting club on knee; control symbol at lower left
Kandahar mint; cf Senior 69.1; BMC 100
laney
Azilises_k.jpg
Indo-Scythians. Azilizes. c. 85-45/35 BC7 viewsAR Tetradrachm, 9.5g, 26mm, 12h.
Obv.: BAΣIΛEΩΣ BAΣIΛEΩN MEΓAΛOY / AZIΣIΛOY; King on horseback right, holding spear.
Rev.: In Kharosthi: Maharajasa rajarajasa mahatasa Ayilishasa; Athena standing left, holding shield with aegis and thunderbolt; monograms in fields.
Reference: Senior 50.1T / 17-133-125
John Anthony
IndoSkythians_Vonones_MIG5_682b.jpg
Indo-Skythians, Vonones.6 viewsIndo-Skythians, Vonones. Assoc. w/ Spalaphores. 75-65 BC. AR Drachm (2.38 gm) of Banna. Armored king on horseback r., holding spear. ΒΑΣΙΛΕΩΣ ΒΑΣΙΛΕΩN ΜEΓAΛOY OΝΩNOY / Radiate Zeus Keraunophoros-Helios stdg slightly l. holding thunderbolt & scepter. Karosti legend Maharaja bhrata dhramikasa Sapahorasa (of the Great King's brother Spalaphores the Just). VF. Mitchener ACW 2150, MIG 5 682(b); Senior ISCH 2 65.3D; HGC 611 R1. Christian T
IndoParthen_Gondophares-Sases_AD35_AE_Drachm_Pathenkot_Senior246_7.png
IndoParthen Gondophares-Sases AD35 AE Drachm Pathenkot 9 viewsObv. King mounted with whip right. Greek legend “BACIΛEWC BACIΛEWN MEΓAΛOY VNΔOΦEPPOY”.

Rev. Zeus standing right holding long scepter. Kharosthi legend “Maharajasa mahatasa tratarasa Devavratasa Guduvharasa Sasasa”
senior 246.7


Skyler
Ioannes_(usurper_423-425)_AE4.png
Iohannes (423-425) AE416 viewsObv: DN IOH[ANN]ES [PF AVG] (Draped bust of emperor) Rev.: [SALVS REIPVBLICAE] (Victory with trophy and captive) Diameter: 12 mm Weight: 1,2 g RIC 1913

This obscure figure was apparently a senior civil servant at the time of his elevation. Barely anything is known about his reign, other than that it ended in tragedy for Iohannes. My example is typical for the general shape his coins are in.
Nick.vdw
FC5.jpg
IONIA, Smyrna. Gaius (Caligula), with Germanicus and Agrippina Senior. AD 37-41.14 viewsIONIA, Smyrna. Gaius (Caligula), with Germanicus and Agrippina Senior. AD 37-41. Æ 21mm (6.42 g, 12h). Menophanes, magistrate, and Aviola, proconsul. Struck circa AD 37-38. Laureate head of Gaius (Caligula) right / Draped bust of Agrippina I right, vis-à-vis bare head of Germanicus left. RPC 2471; Klose XXIX, SNG von Aulock 2201.Joe Geranio
IMGP0085combo.jpg
Kushan: Vima Takto (Soter Megas), ca. 80 - 113 AD26 viewsAE tdr., 8,19gr, 21,3mm,
Senior ISCH type 17.1 (rounded letters), MACW 2957
mint: Taxila, axis: 12h;
obv.: bust, right, w/ diadem, knot and 2 ribbons; five rays surrounding head; short hair, beardless; raised left arm and hand on lower rim holding sceptre; triple necklace; tamgha in left field; dotted border 14:30 - 20h.
rev.: figure mounted on horse, right, on exergual line; tamgha in right field; inscription BACIΛEΩN CΩT(HP) along lower half of rim;

G. Clark, VA.
1 commentsSchatz
oacb.JPG
Kushans: Kujula Kadphises26 viewsKushan Kings Of India. Kujula Kadphises. Circa 30-80 AD. AE Tetradrachm. Diademed and draped bust of Hermaeos right / Herakles standing left, holding club and lion's skin; Karosthi letter in field. Senior B6.2; Mitchiner 1049ff.1 commentsMolinari
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Kushans: Soter Megas21 viewsKushans. Soter Megas. 80-100 AD. AE Drachm . No legend, radiate, diademed, and draped bust right, holding sceptre, three-pronged tamgha behind / BASILEVC BASILEWN CWTHR MEGAC, King riding right on horseback, holding sceptre; three-pronged symbol of Soter Megas before. Senior B17D; Whitehead 100 ff.Molinari
Macrinus_and_Diadumenian.JPG
Macrinus and Diadumenian 217-218 AD. AE28 Pentassarion of Markianopolis. Magistrate Pontianus.16 viewsBare head right of Diadumenian vis à vis laureate head left of Macrinus / VP PONTIANOV MARKIANOPOLEITWN, Aesklepios standing left, leaning on serpent-staff, mantle draped over arm, e to right. Moushmov 534
26 mm, 10.7 grams.
Note: The senior Emperor was almost always pictured on the left. On this coin the situation is different - Macrinus is pictured on the right. _5000 SOLD
Antonivs Protti
ISL_MAMLUKS_Anonymous_SNAT_398-409_2.jpg
Mamluk (Bahri). Anonymous (741-743 A.H. = 1341-1342 A.D.)5 viewsBalog --; SNAT Hamah 398-409; Album 931H

AE fals; Hamah mint, undated; 2.72 g., 20.71 mm. max., 0°

Obv.: Double circular line, connected with spokes within border of dots. ضرب (=duriba/struck) in center.

Rev.: Circular line border, linear hexagram within. بحماة (=bi-Hamah) in center.

The death of Muhammad I in June 1341 was followed by a period of political instability. Muhammad designated his son Abu Bakr as his successor, but Muhammad's senior aide, Qawsun, who held real power, executed Abu Bakr after just two months as sultan. Qawsun had Muhammad's infant son, Kujuk (age 8 or 9), enthroned, but within six months, Qawsun and Kujuk were toppled. Kujuk's half-brother, Ahmad I, was declared sultan. Ahmad relocated to al-Karak, leaving a deputy to rule in Cairo. He was deposed after just five months, and replaced by his half-brother Isma'il in June 1342. In light of the chronology assigned to this coin by the SNAT, it could conceivably have been issued late in the third reign of Muhammad or early in the reign of Isma'il. It could also conceivably have been issued by one of Isma'il's three predecessors. However, according to the Table of Mint Activity in Balog, none of them issued copper coins from the Hamah mint.
Stkp
ISL_MAMLUKS_Balog_--_Anonymous_SNAT_398-409.jpg
Mamluk (Bahri). Anonymous (741-743 A.H. = 1341-1342 A.D.); overstruck, apparently on a Muhammad I (3rd reign 709-741 A.H. = 1310-1341 A.D.) 9 viewsBalog --; SNAT Hamah 398-409; Album 931H; overstruck, apparently on a Balog 245; SNAT Hamah 391-395; Album 922.

AE fals; Hamah mint, undated (host coin also Hamah mint, undated); 1.90 g., 19.11 mm. max., 270°

Obv.: Double circular line, connected with spokes within border of dots. ضرب (=duriba/struck) in center.

Rev.: Circular line border, linear hexagram within. بحماة (=bi-Hamah) in center.

The death of Muhammad I in June 1341 was followed by a period of political instability. Muhammad designated his son Abu Bakr as his successor, but Muhammad's senior aide, Qawsun, who held real power, executed Abu Bakr after just two months as sultan. Qawsun had Muhammad's infant son, Kujuk (age 8 or 9), enthroned, but within six months, Qawsun and Kujuk were toppled. Kujuk's half-brother, Ahmad I, was declared sultan. Ahmad relocated to al-Karak, leaving a deputy to rule in Cairo. He was deposed after just five months, and replaced by his half-brother Isma'il in June 1342. In light of the chronology assigned to this coin by the SNAT, it could conceivably have been issued late in the third reign of Muhammad or early in the reign of Isma'il. It could also conceivably have been issued by one of Isma'il's three predecessors. However, according to the Table of Mint Activity in Balog, none of them issued copper coins from the Hamah mint.

Attribution of the host coin courtesy of Alex Koifman.
Stkp
ISL_Mamluks_Balog_245a_al-N_#257;s_#803;ir_N_#257;s_#803;ir_al-D_#299;n_Mu_#7717;ammad.jpg
Mamluk (Bahri). Hasan (al-Nasir Nasir al-Din Abu'l-Mahasin) (1st reign, 748-752 A.H. = 1347-1351 A.D.; 2nd reign 755-762 A.H. = 1354-1361 A.D.)11 viewsBalog 250 (Muhammad I); SNAT Hamah 526-527; Album 947

AE fals; Hamah mint, undated (2nd reign); 2.04 g., 17.84 mm. max., 0°

Obv.: Linear circle border in border of dots. Field on both sides divided by two horizontal lines into three segments (fesse): ضرب (= duriba/struck) in upper segment; الملك الناصر (= al-Malik al-Nasir/King Nasir) in central segment; بحماة (= Hamah) in lower segment.

Rev.: Shield divided by horizontal band into three horizontal segments (fesse). The central band is bendy of thirteen pieces to the left. Upper and lower segment contains a floral arabesque.

Hasan was the seventh son of Muhammad I to hold office. Upon the death of his half-brother, Sultan Hajji, in 1347, Hasan was raised to the sultanate at age 12 by senior Mamluk emirs formerly belonging to his father. Upon his accession, he disavowed his given (Turkic) name and assumed the Arabic name, Hasan. He was toppled by the emirs in 1351 when he attempted to assert executive authority, and reinstated by them three years later during a coup against his half-brother, Sultan Salih. During his second reign, he pursued a policy of minimizing the role of the mamluk emirs in the state and relying instead on the descendants of mamluks, known as awlad al-nas. Hasan was killed in 1361 at age 27 by one of his own mamluks, who led a faction opposed to Hasan's policy of elevating the awlad al-nas to positions of authority. Hasan was the only descendant of Muhammad to have had a significant impact on events in the sultanate, and was referred to by a Mamluk-era historian as one of the "best kings of the Turks."

Atribution courtesy of Alex Koifman
1 commentsStkp
ISL_MAMLUKS_Hasan.jpg
Mamluk (Bahri). Hasan (al-Nasir Nasir al-Din Abu'l-Mahasin) (1st reign, 748-752 A.H. = 1347-1351 A.D.; 2nd reign 755-762 A.H. = 1354-1361 A.D.)7 viewsBalog (1970) 905B; SNAT Hamah 505-511; Album 947

AE fals, Hamah mint, dated (75)1 A.H. = 1350/51 A.D. (first reign): 2.36 g., 18.72 mm. max., 180°

Obv.: Solid border. الملك / الناصر (= al-malik / al-Násir) in two rows in center.

Rev. Octolobe of dots, solid octolobe within, mint name and date separated by ornamental border in center.

Hasan was the seventh son of Muhammad I to hold office. Upon the death of his half-brother, Sultan Hajji, in 1347, Hasan was raised to the sultanate at age 12 by senior Mamluk emirs formerly belonging to his father. Upon his accession, he disavowed his given (Turkic) name and assumed the Arabic name, Hasan. He was toppled by the emirs in 1351 when he attempted to assert executive authority, and reinstated by them three years later during a coup against his half-brother, Sultan Salih. During his second reign, he pursued a policy of minimizing the role of the mamluk emirs in the state and relying instead on the descendants of mamluks, known as awlad al-nas. Hasan was killed in 1361 at age 27 by one of his own mamluks, who led a faction opposed to Hasan's policy of elevating the awlad al-nas to positions of authority. Hasan was the only descendant of Muhammad to have had a significant impact on events in the sultanate, and was referred to by a Mamluk-era historian as one of the "best kings of the Turks."
Stkp
ISL_Mamluk_Balog_295_Isma__il.jpg
Mamluk (Bahri). Mamluk. Hajji I (al-Muzaffar Sayf al-Din Hajji) (747-748 A.H. = 1346-1347 A.D.)6 viewsBalog 315 Plate XII 315; SNAT Hamah 480-481; Album 943

AE fals, Hamah mint, undated: 3.13 g., 21.32 mm. max., 270°

Obv.: Circular line border. Field divided by two horizontal lines (fesse). Ornament in upper and lower segments. االملك المظف (=al-Malik al-Muzaffar).

Rev.:Circular line border. Inverted linear dodekalobe, each point of arch crowned with tiny fleur-de-lis. In center: ضرب (=duriba/struck) / بحماة (bi-Hamah) in two lines.

Hajji was the sixth of Muhammad I's sons to serve as sultan, acceding to office at age 15. One year later, a group of Circassian mamluks angry at Hajji's killing of a senior Circassian emir in his retinue revolted against his rule. Hajji sought to eliminate them, but once he reached the outskirts of Cairo, his troops abandoned him. He was captured and killed. He was known for his love of sports and pigeon racing, acts which frustrated the senior Mamluk emirs who believed he neglected his duties and spent extravagant sums gambling.
Stkp
ISL_MAMLUKS_Balog_339_al-Sâlih_Salâh_al-Dîn_Sâlih.jpg
Mamluk (Bahri). Salih (al-Salih Salah al-Din) (752-755 A.H. = 1351-1354 A.D.)19 viewsBalog 339, Plate XIII No. 339; SNAT Hamah 519-522; Album 951

AE fals; Hamah mint, dated (75)5 A.H. = 1354 A.D.; 1.45 g., 17.69 mm. max.

Obv.: Beaded border inside of which there is a solid circular border; سنة خمس (= sanat khms = year 5) / الملك الصالح (al-Malik al-Salih) in center in two rows.

Rev.: Solid border; a circle of ten, pointed arches. In it, a rosette of ten rhomboidal petals around a central pellet.

Salih was the eighth son of Muhammad I to hold office. He was installed as sultan at age 14 upon the ouster of his half-brother, Sultan Hasan, by senior Mamluk emirs. In effect, Emir Taz was the ruler of the sultanate and Salih was a figurehead sultan, although Salih did lead an army into Syria to quash a rebellion. In 1354, dissident emirs ousted Taz, toppled Salih and restored Hasan to power.
1 commentsStkp
ISL_Mamluk_338_Salih.jpg
Mamluk (Bahri). Salih (al-Salih Salah al-Din) (752-755 A.H. = 1351-1354 A.D.)10 viewsBalog 338, Plate XIII No. 338a-b; Album 951

AE fals; Halab/Aleppo mint, dated (7)55 A.H. = 1354 A.D.; 2.71 g., 21.41 mm. max., 0°

Obv.: Solid circular line border. Field divided by two horizontal lines into three segments: سنة خمس (sunat khms/five years) / الملك الصالح (al-Malik al-Salih) / وخمسين بحلب (wakhamsin bi-Halab/fifty in Halab)

Rev.: Circle of scrolls between two circular lines. In center: bird (probably an eagle) walking to right, head turned straight back. Above the bird's back, swan-like body.

Salih was the eighth son of Muhammad I to hold office. He was installed as sultan at age 14 upon the ouster of his half-brother, Sultan Hasan, by senior Mamluk emirs. In effect, Emir Taz was the ruler of the sultanate and Salih was a figurehead sultan, although Salih did lead an army into Syria to quash a rebellion. In 1354, dissident emirs ousted Taz, toppled Salih and restored Hasan to power.
1 commentsStkp
ISL_MAMLUKS_Balog_480_al-Ashraf_N_#257;sir_al-D_#299;n_Sha__b_#257;n_II.jpg
Mamluk (Bahri). Sha`ban II (al-Ashraf Nasir al-Din Sha`ban) (764-778 A.H. = 1363-1377 A.D.)6 viewsBalog 480 Plate XVIII 480; Album 958

AE fals, Trablus/Tripoli (Lebanon), undated: 2.51 g., 18.15 mm. max., 180°

Obv.: Circular line with border of dots. Field divided by two horizontal lines of dots into three segments: ضرب طر (duriba/struck) / الملك الاشرف (al-Malik al-Ashraf) / ا طرابلس [?] (Trablus)

Rev.: Circular line with border of dots. Lion passant to left, with tail curled back. The lion's body is adapted to the circular field.

Sha'ban II was a grandson of Muhammad I, being the son of one of Muhammad's sons who never held office. In 1363, the senior Mamluk emirs, led by Emir Yalbugha, deposed Sultan Muhammad II on charges of illicit behavior and installed ten-year-old Sha'ban as his figurehead replacement. In 1366 Sha'ban, who sought to wield power, supported a successful revolt against Yalbugha. One year later, Sha'ban, who still had few mamluks of his own but was supported by the common people, quelled a rebellion. Again in 1373, the commoners assisted Sha'ban in defeating a rebellion. Because of their loyalty and key support during these revolts, Sha'ban treated the commoners well throughout his reign, including efforts to provide food for the poor during a two-year famine in Egypt. In 1376, Sha'ban went on the Hajj pilgrimage to Mecca. In his absence emirs again rebelled against Sha'ban, which was followed by a rebellion of Sha'ban's own mamluk guard, who murdered him in 1377.
Stkp
ISL_Mamluks_Balog_461_al-Ashraf_N_#257;s_#803;ir_al-D_#299;n_Sha__ban_II.jpg
Mamluk (Bahri). Sha`ban II (al-Ashraf Nasir al-Din Sha`ban) (764-778 A.H. = 1363-1377 A.D.)7 viewsBalog 461, Plate XVII, No. 461; SNAT Hamah 581-584; Album 958

AE fals; Ḥamāh mint, undated; 2.67 g., 19.69 mm. max., 90°

Obv.: Circular line in border of dots. In it, oblong cartouche, lateral ends pointed inwards, on upper and lower sides, convexity; الملك (= al-Malik) / الاشرف (= al-Ashraf) in two rows in center.

Rev.: No border. Double circular line, connected with 12 spokes; on the external circle, 24 short radiating rods, crowned with a pellet; بحماة (= Hamah) in center.

Sha'ban II was a grandson of Muhammad I, being the son of one of Muhammad's sons who never held office. In 1363, the senior Mamluk emirs, led by Emir Yalbugha, deposed Sultan Muhammad II on charges of illicit behavior and installed ten-year-old Sha'ban as his figurehead replacement. In 1366 Sha'ban, who sought to wield power, supported a successful revolt against Yalbugha. One year later, Sha'ban, who still had few mamluks of his own but was supported by the common people, quelled a rebellion. Again in 1373, the commoners assisted Sha'ban in defeating a rebellion. Because of their loyalty and key support during these revolts, Sha'ban treated the commoners well throughout his reign, including efforts to provide food for the poor during a two-year famine in Egypt. In 1376, Sha'ban went on the Hajj pilgrimage to Mecca. In his absence emirs again rebelled against Sha'ban, which was followed by a rebellion of Sha'ban's own mamluk guard, who murdered him in 1377.
Stkp
ISL_Mamluk_Balog_467_Sha__b_#257;n_II.jpg
Mamluk (Bahri). Sha`ban II (al-Ashraf Nasir al-Din Sha`ban) (764-778 A.H. = 1363-1377 A.D.)6 viewsBalog 467 Plate XVII 467; SNAT Hamah 605-607; Album 958

AE fals, Hamah mint, dated (7)75 A.H. = 1373/74 A.D.: 2.16 g., 18.71 mm. max., 90°

Obv.: Circular line with border of dots. Field divided by two horizontal lines into three segments: بحماة / الملك الاشرف / ضرب (= Hamah / al-Malik al-Ashraf / duriba = struck)

Rev.: Circular line with border of dots. Field divided by a triple horizontal lines into two segments: و ستين / سنة خمس (= and seventy / five years).

Sha'ban II was a grandson of Muhammad I, being the son of one of Muhammad's sons who never held office. In 1363, the senior Mamluk emirs, led by Emir Yalbugha, deposed Sultan Muhammad II on charges of illicit behavior and installed ten-year-old Sha'ban as his figurehead replacement. In 1366 Sha'ban, who sought to wield power, supported a successful revolt against Yalbugha. One year later, Sha'ban, who still had few mamluks of his own but was supported by the common people, quelled a rebellion. Again in 1373, the commoners assisted Sha'ban in defeating a rebellion. Because of their loyalty and key support during these revolts, Sha'ban treated the commoners well throughout his reign, including efforts to provide food for the poor during a two-year famine in Egypt. In 1376, Sha'ban went on the Hajj pilgrimage to Mecca. In his absence emirs again rebelled against Sha'ban, which was followed by a rebellion of Sha'ban's own mamluk guard, who murdered him in 1377.
Stkp
ISL_MAMLUK_Balog_462_v_al-Ashraf_N_#257;s_#803;ir_al-D_#299;n_Sha__ban_II.jpg
Mamluk (Bahri). Sha`ban II (al-Ashraf Nasir al-Din Sha`ban) (764-778 A.H. = 1363-1377 A.D.)18 viewsBalog 462 Plate XVII 462 var. (orientation of bendy); SNAT Hamah 615-616; Album 958

AE fals; Hamah mint, undated 776-778 A.H. = 1374-1377 A.D.; 1.62 g., 17.81 mm. max., 90°

Obv.: Solid border, circular border within; الملك الاشرف (= al-Malik al-Ashraf) between arabesque ornaments in center.

Rev.: Field divided into three horizontal segments, the central fesse segment bendy with seven pieces to left; بحما (= bi-Hamah) in upper segment, ضرب (= duriba/struck) in lower.

Sha'ban II was a grandson of Muhammad I, being the son of one of Muhammad's sons who never held office. In 1363, the senior Mamluk emirs, led by Emir Yalbugha, deposed Sultan Muhammad II on charges of illicit behavior and installed ten-year-old Sha'ban as his figurehead replacement. In 1366 Sha'ban, who sought to wield power, supported a successful revolt against Yalbugha. One year later, Sha'ban, who still had few mamluks of his own but was supported by the common people, quelled a rebellion. Again in 1373, the commoners assisted Sha'ban in defeating a rebellion. Because of their loyalty and key support during these revolts, Sha'ban treated the commoners well throughout his reign, including efforts to provide food for the poor during a two-year famine in Egypt. In 1376, Sha'ban went on the Hajj pilgrimage to Mecca. In his absence emirs again rebelled against Sha'ban, which was followed by a rebellion of Sha'ban's own mamluk guard, who murdered him in 1377.
1 commentsStkp
ISL_MAMLUKS_Balog_464_Al_Ashraf_Sha__ban.jpg
Mamluk (Bahri). Sha`ban II (al-Ashraf Nasir al-Din Sha`ban) (764-778 A.H. = 1363-1377 A.D.)4 viewsBalog 464 Plate XVII 464a-b; SNAT Hamah 595-604; Album 958

AE fals, Hamah mint, struck 773 A.H. = 1371/2 A.D.: 1.40 g., 18.28 mm. max., 180°

Obv.: Circular line in border of dots. In it, linear square. الملك (= al-Malik) / الاشرف (= al-Ashraf) in two rows in center; بحماة (= bi Hamah) in upper segment, ضرب (= duriba/struck) in lower segments.

Rev.: Border comprised of circular rigid cable to left between two linear circles. Lion passant to left, with tail curled back, knot in the middle of the tail.

Sha'ban II was a grandson of Muhammad I, being the son of one of Muhammad's sons who never held office. In 1363, the senior Mamluk emirs, led by Emir Yalbugha, deposed Sultan Muhammad II on charges of illicit behavior and installed ten-year-old Sha'ban as his figurehead replacement. In 1366 Sha'ban, who sought to wield power, supported a successful revolt against Yalbugha. One year later, Sha'ban, who still had few mamluks of his own but was supported by the common people, quelled a rebellion. Again in 1373, the commoners assisted Sha'ban in defeating a rebellion. Because of their loyalty and key support during these revolts, Sha'ban treated the commoners well throughout his reign, including efforts to provide food for the poor during a two-year famine in Egypt. In 1376, Sha'ban went on the Hajj pilgrimage to Mecca. In his absence emirs again rebelled against Sha'ban, which was followed by a rebellion of Sha'ban's own mamluk guard, who murdered him in 1377.
Stkp
ISL_Mamluks_Balog_466.jpg
Mamluk (Bahri). Sha`ban II (al-Ashraf Nasir al-Din Sha`ban) (764-778 A.H. = 1363-1377 A.D.)15 viewsBalog 466 Plate XVII 466; SNAT Hamah 574-580; Album 958

AE fals, Hamah mint, dated (76)4 A.H. = 1363 A.D.: 2.58 g., 20.55 mm. max., 180°

Obv.: Rigid cable to left border between two circular lines. In center: الاشرف (al-Ashraf) / سنة بحماة (sanat bi-Hamah) / ضرب (duriba) / أربعة (arbe/four)

Rev.: Fleur-de-lis with wide basis, between two small rings. Top flanked by two pellets.

Sha'ban II was a grandson of Muhammad I, being the son of one of Muhammad's sons who never held office. In 1363, the senior Mamluk emirs, led by Emir Yalbugha, deposed Sultan Muhammad II on charges of illicit behavior and installed ten-year-old Sha'ban as his figurehead replacement. In 1366 Sha'ban, who sought to wield power, supported a successful revolt against Yalbugha. One year later, Sha'ban, who still had few mamluks of his own but was supported by the common people, quelled a rebellion. Again in 1373, the commoners assisted Sha'ban in defeating a rebellion. Because of their loyalty and key support during these revolts, Sha'ban treated the commoners well throughout his reign, including efforts to provide food for the poor during a two-year famine in Egypt. In 1376, Sha'ban went on the Hajj pilgrimage to Mecca. In his absence emirs again rebelled against Sha'ban, which was followed by a rebellion of Sha'ban's own mamluk guard, who murdered him in 1377.
1 commentsStkp
ISL_MAMLUKS_Balog_471_Sha__ban_II.jpg
Mamluk (Bahri). Sha`ban II (al-Ashraf Nasir al-Din Sha`ban) (764-778 A.H. = 1363-1377 A.D.)7 viewsBalog 471 Plate XVIII 471; Album 958

AE fals, Halab/Aleppo mint, undated: 1.96 g., 19.26 mm. max., 270°

Obv.: Circular line border. Field divided by two horizontal lines into three segments: ضرب / الملك الاشرف / بحلب (= duriba = struck / al-Malik al-Ashraf = the King al-Ashraf / bi-Halab = in Halab)

Rev.: Circular line border. Linear dodekalobe with flowerets looking inwards. In it, linear hexagram with central crescent.

Sha'ban II was a grandson of Muhammad I, being the son of one of Muhammad's sons who never held office. In 1363, the senior Mamluk emirs, led by Emir Yalbugha, deposed Sultan Muhammad II on charges of illicit behavior and installed ten-year-old Sha'ban as his figurehead replacement. In 1366 Sha'ban, who sought to wield power, supported a successful revolt against Yalbugha. One year later, Sha'ban, who still had few mamluks of his own but was supported by the common people, quelled a rebellion. Again in 1373, the commoners assisted Sha'ban in defeating a rebellion. Because of their loyalty and key support during these revolts, Sha'ban treated the commoners well throughout his reign, including efforts to provide food for the poor during a two-year famine in Egypt. In 1376, Sha'ban went on the Hajj pilgrimage to Mecca. In his absence emirs again rebelled against Sha'ban, which was followed by a rebellion of Sha'ban's own mamluk guard, who murdered him in 1377.
Stkp
ANTLEGX.jpg
Mark Antony Legionary Denarius LEG X101 viewsANT AVG III VIR R P C
Galley r. mast with banners at prow

LEG X
Legionary eagle between two standards

Patrae mint 32-31BC

LEG X (later called Gemina) was levied in 59 BC or earlier by Julius Caesar. It was the first legion levied by him personally and was raised in Spain. It played a major role in the Gallic war featuring prominently in Caesar's "Gallic Wars." Legio X was his most trusted and loyal Legion. In 45 BC the Legion was disbanded and given land grants in Southern Gaul.

During the civil war that followed Caesar's assassination, Legio X was reconstituted by Lepidus in the winter of 44/43 BC making use of many retired legionaries who re-enlisted. It was eventually turned over to Antony and fought for him until the final Battle of Philippi. The veterans obtained lands near Cremona, and an inscription reports that the name of the legion at the time was Veneria, "devoted to Venus." This alluded to Julius Caesar's claimed descent from Venus.

The newly levied Tenth was then taken by Antony to Armenia for his Parthian campaign. During Antony's civil war, the legion fought for him until his defeat at the Battle of Actium, after which the legion changed sides and moved into Octavian's army. They were then taken to Egypt to finish off Antony and Cleopatra. Octavian never fully trusted the 10th Legion as it had been fiercely loyal to both Julius Caesar and Mark Antony. After Antony's death Octavian left the legion in the East in Syria. In 29 BC the legion was due to be discharged. When the legionaries pressed for their release and land grants Octavian was slow in complying. Suetonius says that the entire legion rioted and Octavian dishonorably discharged the entire legion.

Octavian now recruited new legionaries to fill the 10th Legion in its traditional recruiting grounds of Spain. Some of the senior Centurions may have re-enlisted for a third term to serve with the 10th. These men would have been in their late 40's or early 50's. The new legionaries marched over land to Syria to take up their posting. The new 10th Legion's home base was on the Euphrates to keep an eye on the Parthians.

The next discharge date would be 14-13 BC. This time the 10th Legion was settled in Beirut and the city was given Colony status. Ten years later the 10th Legion under Publius Quintilius Varus was marched down to Jerusalem to garrison the city after Herod the Great died. The 10th Legion would remain in Jerusalem until 6 AD.
2 commentsJay GT4
ANTVESPcounter.jpg
Mark Antony Legionary denarius LEG X IMPVESP138 viewsANT AVG III VIR R P C
Galley r. mast with banners at prow
IMPVESP counter mark above galley

LEG X?
Legionary eagle between two standards IMPVESP countermark


Patrae mint 32-31BC

3.01g

Ex-Incitatus

Obverse countermarked IMPVESP during Vespasian's reign showing this denarius was in circulation for well over 100 years! In hand I can make out X for the legion number but can't be sure if any other numerals appear after it. This countermark appears mostly on late Republican and Imperatorial denarii, although denarii of Augustus and denarii of the Flavians struck at Ephesus are also recorded. The MP VES countermarks circulated specifically within the province of Asia Minor. Martini noted that the output of silver coinage in relation to the civic bronze for this region was much smaller during the Julio-Claudian period. This suggests the denarii were countermarked to validate locally circulating silver coinage at an acceptable weight while the regional mints opened by Vespasian were gearing up production, a theory which the countermarking of cistophori with the contemporary MP VES AVG countermarks seems to support. The similarly countermarked Flavian denarii struck at Ephesus can be accounted for then as examples accidentally countermarked by unobservant mint workers during the transition.



LEG X (later called Gemina) was levied in 59 BC or earlier by Julius Caesar. It was the first legion levied by him personally and was raised in Spain. It played a major role in the Gallic war featuring prominently in Caesar's "Gallic Wars." Legio X was his most trusted and loyal Legion. In 45 BC the Legion was disbanded and given land grants in Southern Gaul.

During the civil war that followed Caesar's assassination, Legio X was reconstituted by Lepidus in the winter of 44/43 BC making use of many retired legionaries who re-enlisted. It was eventually turned over to Antony and fought for him until the final Battle of Philippi. The veterans obtained lands near Cremona, and an inscription reports that the name of the legion at the time was Veneria, "devoted to Venus." This alluded to Julius Caesar's claimed descent from Venus.

The newly levied Tenth was then taken by Antony to Armenia for his Parthian campaign. During Antony's civil war, the legion fought for him until his defeat at the Battle of Actium, after which the legion changed sides and moved into Octavian's army. They were then taken to Egypt to finish off Antony and Cleopatra. Octavian never fully trusted the 10th Legion as it had been fiercely loyal to both Julius Caesar and Mark Antony. After Antony's death Octavian left the legion in the East in Syria. In 29 BC the legion was due to be discharged. When the legionaries pressed for their release and land grants Octavian was slow in complying. Suetonius says that the entire legion rioted and Octavian dishonorably discharged the entire legion.

Octavian now recruited new legionaries to fill the 10th Legion in its traditional recruiting grounds of Spain. Some of the senior Centurions may have re-enlisted for a third term to serve with the 10th. These men would have been in their late 40's or early 50's. The new legionaries marched over land to Syria to take up their posting. The new 10th Legion's home base was on the Euphrates to keep an eye on the Parthians.

The next discharge date would be 14-13 BC. This time the 10th Legion was settled in Beirut and the city was given Colony status. Ten years later the 10th Legion under Publius Quintilius Varus was marched down to Jerusalem to garrison the city after Herod the Great died. The 10th Legion would remain in Jerusalem until 6 AD.
5 commentsJay GT4
LEG_XI.jpg
Mark Antony Legionary Denarius LEG XI90 viewsANT AVG III VIR R P C
galley r. mast with banners at prow

Rev LEG XI legionary eagle between two standards


Patrae mint 32-31BC

ex-Arcade Coins

An Antonian legion which was disbanded or lost its separate identity after the battle of Actium.

The two centurions Titus Pullo and Lucius Vorenus were from Legio XI (not XIII as the series Rome would have us believe). Pullo and Vorenus were fierce rivals for promotion to primus pilus, the most senior centurion in a legion. Both distinguished themselves in 54 BC when the Nervii attacked the legion under Quintus Cicero in their winter quarters in Nervian territory. In an effort to outdo Vorenus, Pullo charged out of the fortified camp and attacked the enemy, but was soon wounded and surrounded. Vorenus followed and engaged his attackers in hand-to-hand combat, killing one and driving the rest back, but lost his footing and was himself soon surrounded. Pullo in turn rescued Vorenus, and after killing several of the enemy, the pair returned to camp amid applause from their comrades.

In the Civil War of 49 BC, Pullo was assigned to the XXIV Victrix Rapax, a new Italian legion commanded by the legate Gaius Antonius. In 48 BC, Antonius was blockaded on an island and forced to surrender. Pullo was apparently responsible for most of his soldiers switching sides to fight for Pompey. Later that year, he is recorded bravely defending Pompey's camp in Greece from Caesar's attack shortly before the Battle of Pharsalus.

Titus Pullo
Maximian_joined.jpg
Maximianus Follis9 viewsMaximianus. As Senior Augustus, A.D. 305-307. AE follis (26 mm, 9.57 g, 6 h). Cyzicus, A.D. 305-306.

Laureate bust of Maximianus right, wearing imperial mantle, holding olive branch and mappa / Providentia standing right, extending right hand to Quies, standing left, holding branch up and scepter; S-F//K(delta). RIC 119b. EF, black patina.
grattius
Philip_II_Silver_antoninianus.jpg
Philip II, July or August 247 - Late 249 A.D.53 viewsSilver antoninianus, RIC IV 230, RSC IV 17, Hunter III 23, SRCV III 9265, Choice EF, excellent portrait, well centered and struck, light toning on mint luster, edge cracks, Rome mint, weight 4.274g, maximum diameter 22.2mm, die axis 180o, 11th emission, 249 A.D.; obverse IMP PHILIPPVS AVG, radiate, draped, and cuirassed bust right, from behind; reverse LIBERALITAS AVGG III, Philip I and Philip II seated left on curule chairs presiding at their third largesse, both laureate, togate, and extending right hand, Philip I on left and holding short scepter in right hand.

EX FORVM.

*One of the best reverse , I have ever seen.

The curule chair was for senior magistrates including dictators, masters of the horse, consuls, praetors, censors, and the curule aediles. As a form of a throne, it might be given as an honor to foreign kings recognized formally as a friend (amicus) by the Roman people or senate. Designed for use by commanders in the field, the curule chair could be folded for easy transport. It had no back, low arms, curved legs forming an X, and was traditionally made of or veneered with ivory.

2 commentsSam
27.jpg
PHILIP SENIOR 244-249 A.D. AE 28 ROS-10251 viewsPHILIP SENIOR 244-249 A.D. AE 28 ROS-102
O:bust r, radiate draped
R:eagle displayed supporting a wreath containing 3 figures in centre ,city-goddest standing l hand on standard .
Demeter standing r hand resting on sceptre ortorch on r agod nude standing r.
Maritima
RI 049c img~0.jpg
Pietas231 viewsFaustina Senior Denarius
Obv:– DIVA AVG FAVSTINA, Bust head right
Rev:– PIETAS AVG, Pietas standing left and altar
References:– RIC 394a, RSC 234

The virtue "Dutifulness". A respect for the natural order socially, politically, and religiously. Includes the ideas of patriotism and devotion to others.
maridvnvm
Faustina_I_2.jpg
PIETAS AVG19 viewsFaustina Senior Denarius. DIVA AVG FAVSTINA, draped bust right / PIE-TAS AVG, Pietas standing left, dropping incense on altar. RIC 394a, RSC 234, BMC 311.kaitsuburi
ptolemyVI.jpg
Ptolemy VI Philometor, Herakles/ Eagle, 25 mm, "K"18 viewsPtolemaic Kingdom of Egypt, Ptolemy VI Philometor, 180 - 145 B.C. Bronze obol, Svoronos 1376, SNG Cop 270, VF, obverse weak in places, 11.427g, 25.0mm, 315o, c. 180 - 168 B.C.; obverse Bearded head of Herakles right wearing lion's scalp; circle of dots around; reverse “PTOLEMAIOU BASILEWS”, eagle standing half left, head turned back right, long transverse caduceus behind, K below; rare. The bearded Herakles obverse occurs on three different series of Ptolemaic bronzes identified by Svoronos. Our coin type has an average obol weight of 10.93 g. The style and weight connect it to the reign of Ptolemy VI. Similar issues with a transverse scepter have “EUL” between the legs of the eagle, for Eulaios an advisor to young Ptolemy VI. The K may refer to Cleopatra I, senior co-ruler between 180 and 178/7 BC, while Ptolemy VI was a young child. Alternatively, K may stand for either Komanos or Kineas, who took the advisor-roles of Eulaios and Lenaios. Diobols (Svoronos 1375) exhibit a different eagle but the same K between the legs. The relative scarcity of the K-issues suggests that they may be for Komanos or Kineas. ex FORVM

Podiceps
Rare_AE25_of_Diadumenian_as_Caesar_(217-218_AD)_from_Marcianopolis,_Moesia_Inferior.jpg
Rare AE25 of Diadumenian as Caesar (217-218 AD) from Marcianopolis, Moesia Inferior 21 viewsMacrinus and Diadumenian facing each other on obverse (bareheaded Caesar Diadumenian to the left and diademed Augustus Macrinus to the right), inscriptions / Hercules standing , leaning on his club and holding a lion skin, Salus standing, feeding snake out of patera, .....MAPKIANOPOLEITON. Light yellowish brown patina. Rare. 26 mm, 10.7 grams.
Note: The senior Emperor was almost always pictured on the left. On this coin the situation is different - Macrinus is pictured on the right. 5000
Antonio Protti
Dracma Indo-Scythian - Azes II.jpg
Reino Indo-Escita - AZES II (35 A.C. - 5 D.C.)48 viewsAcuñada en tiempos de Azes II en el antiguo Imperio sacio, el estado indoescita que ocupó el norte de los actuales Afganistán, Pakistán e India.

AR Dracma 15 x 14 mm 1.8 gr.

Anv: "BAΣIΛEΩΣ BAΣIΛEΩN MEΓAΛOY AZOY" (Gran Rey de Reyes Azes) - Emperador a caballo, acorazado, parado a derecha y portando látigo. Monograma en campo derech
Rev: LEYENDA INDIA - Zeus Nicéforo de pié a derecha, portando Nike en mano derecha y lanza/cetro oblicuo en izquierda. Monograma en campo izquierdo.

Este rey tiene fama de buen astrónomo y también de viajero, por lo que dado que fue coetáneo al nacimiento de Jesucristo y que vivía en Oriente, resulta ser el candidato mejor posicionado por la tradición y la Historia para ser nada menos que... ¡ uno de los 3 Reyes Magos !(Tesorillo)

Acuñada: 15 – 5 A.C.

Referencias: Seaby'66 #2679 - Senior type105: 105, 120, 154, 183, 193, 231, 235 (2), 390, 391, 670, cf.790 - Mitchiner vol. 6, p. 565, type 857
mdelvalle
Titus001.jpg
RIC 108 Titus denarius154 viewsIMP TITVS CAES VESPASIAN AVG P M
Laureate head right

TR P IX IMP XV COS VIII P P
Wreath on curule chair.

3.27g

Rome 79 AD

RIC 108 (C2), RSC 318


In the Roman Republic, and later the Empire, the curule seat (sella curulis, supposedly from currus, "chariot") was the chair upon which senior magistrates or promagistrates owning imperium were entitled to sit, including dictators, masters of the horse, consuls, praetors, censors, and the curule aediles. According to Livy the curule seat, like the Roman toga, originated in Etruria and it has been used on surviving Etruscan monuments to identify magistrates. The curule chair is used on Roman medals as well as funerary monuments to express a curule magistracy; when traversed by a hasta (spear), it is the symbol of Juno.

The curule chair was traditionally made of or veneered with ivory, with curved legs forming a wide X; it had no back, and low arms. Although often of luxurious construction, the Roman curule was meant to be uncomfortable to sit on for long periods of time, the double symbolism being that the official was expected to carry out his public function in an efficient and timely manner, and that his office, being an office of the republic, was temporary, not perennial.
6 commentsJay GT4
Fake_-_RIC_251.JPG
RIC 251 var.16 viewsDenarius, 112-114
Obv: IMP TRAIANO AVG GER DAC P M TR P COS VI P P
Laur. r., dr. l. s.
Rev: DIVVS PATER TRAIAN
Trajan Senior seated l., holding patera and sceptre.
3.6g
Sold on eBay Spain, 30 November 2014, for €19.99.
klausklage
Trajan_RIC_252.jpg
RIC 25215 viewsDenarius, 112-114
Obv: IMP TRAIANO AVG GER DAC P M TR P COS VI P P
Laur. r., dr. l. s.
Rev: DIVVS PATER TRAIAN
Trajan Senior seated l., holding patera and sceptre.
20mm, 2.92g

RIC mentions a draped portrait, probably by mistake; all specimen that I have seen only have drapery over l. shoulder.
klausklage
Faustina_I_R685_fac.jpg
RIC 3, p.069, 343 - Faustina I, Temple13 viewsFaustina Senior
Denarius
Obv.: DIVA - FAVSTINA, draped bust right
Rev.: AED DIV FAVSTINAE, front of temple of Diva Faustina with six columns, in the center statue of Faustina.
Ag, 3,28g, 19mm
Ref.: RIC 343 [S], CRE 126 [C]
1 commentsshanxi
Faustina_I_02.jpg
RIC 3, p.070, 348b - Faustina I, Fortuna 40 viewsFaustina Senior
Denarius after 141
Obv.: DIVA FAVSTINA, veiled bust right
Rev.: AETERNITAS, Fortuna standing left, holding globe and rudder
Ag, 3.43g, 18.6mm
Ref.: RIC 348b, C 6, RCV 4577, CRE 97 [R]
1 commentsshanxi
Faustina_I_R674_fac.jpg
RIC 3, p.071, 361a - Faustina I, Ceres4 viewsFaustina Senior
Denarius after 141
Obv.: DIVA FAVSTINA, bust right
Rev.: AVGVSTA, Ceres standing left, raising hand and holding torch
Ag, 3.43g, 17.4mm
Ref.: RIC 361a [C], CRE 83 [S]
shanxi
Faustina_I_01.jpg
RIC 3, p.073, 391 - Faustina I, Juno 35 viewsFaustina Senior
Denarius after 141
Obv.: DIVA FAVSTINA Draped bust right.
Rev.: IVNO Juno veiled standing left, holding patera and sceptre.
Ag, 3.1g, 18.4mm
Ref.: RIC 391, CRE 99 [S]
Ex CNG
1 commentsshanxi
Faustina_I_03.jpg
RIC 3, p.074, 394a - Faustina I, Pietas28 viewsFaustina Senior
AR Denarius after 141
Obv.: DIVA AVG FAVSTINA, Diademed and draped right.
Rev.: PIETAS AVG, Pietas, veiled, standing facing, head left, holding incense box and sacrificing over lighted altar.
Ag, 18,5x194mm, 3.49g
Ref.: RIC III 394a, CRE 114 [S]
Ex Pecunem Gitbud&Naumann auction 30, Lot 490
shanxi
Faustina_I_R679_fac.jpg
RIC 3, p.074, 395Ca - Faustina I, Pietas9 viewsFaustina Senior
AR Denarius after 141
Obv.: DIVA AVG FAVSTINA, Bust of Faustina I right
Rev.: PIETAS AVG, Pietas, veiled, draped, standing left, with right hand dropping incense on lighted candelabrum and holding box in left hand
Ag, 3.19g, 17mm
Ref.: RIC III 395Ca, CRE 117 [C]
1 commentsshanxi
04816q00.jpg
ROMAN EMPIRE, Agrippa, Copper as, RIC I Caligula 58434 viewsAgrippa, Military commander, friend of Augustus, grandfather of Caligula, great-grandfather of Nero

Copper as, RIC I Caligula 58, SRCV I 556, superb EF, weight 10.34 g, maximum diameter 27.5 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 38 A.D.; obverse M AGRIPPA L F COS III, head left wearing a rostral crown; reverse Neptune standing half left, dolphin in right, trident in left, S - C across fields; bold high relief strike on a large flan with no wear, beautiful green patina, extraordinary portrait, spectacular!

Marcus Vipsanius Agrippa was a boyhood friend of Augustus and a renowned military commander on land and sea, winning the famous battle of Actium against the forces of Marcus Antonius and Cleopatra. Declared Augustus' successor, Agrippa's brilliant career ended when he predeceased Augustus in 12 B.C. He was married to Augustus' daughter Julia; father of Gaius and Lucius Caesars, Agrippa Postumus, Julia and Agrippina Senior; grandfather of Caligula, and great-grandfather of Nero.

7 commentsJoe Sermarini
012.jpg
Roman Empire, Agrippina Senior, Mother of Gaius.44 viewsAgrippina Senior, mother of Gaius.
Denarius, Roma mint, AD 37-38.
Obv. C CAESAR AVG GERM PM TR POT, laureate head of Gaius right.
Rev. AGRIPPINA MAT C CAES AVG GERM, draped bust of Agrippina Senior right.
RIC 14 (I, 109); RSC 2 (II, 6). AR 3,78g, 19mm.
Good Very Fine / Good Very Fine.
Provenance: Giulio Bernardi Numismatico Trieste, Italia.
apyatygin
Agrippina Snr RIC 102 obv and rev.jpg
ROMAN EMPIRE, Agrippina Senior, RIC 10277 viewsAgrippina Senior
AE Sestertius
Rome Mint. 42 A.D.
Obv: AGRIPPINA M F GERMANICI CAESARIS - Draped bust right.
Rev: TI CLAVDIUS CAESAR AVG GERM P M TR P IMP P P S-C
Ref: RIC 102. Cohen 3. RCV 1906. VM 2.
Notes: Wife of Germanicus. Mother of Caligula. Struck by brother-in-law Claudius. One of my favourite coins despite its condition. Beautiful patina.
seraphic
Diva_Faustina_Senior.jpg
ROMAN EMPIRE, Faustina I (Senior), After AD 141, AR Denarius.117 viewsDiva Faustina Senior, AD 141, AR Denarius (3.42g). Rome after AD 147.
Obverse: DIVA FAVSTINA draped bust of Diva Faustina right.
Reverse: AVGVSTA, Ceres standing left, holding grain ears in right hand and torch in left.
Ex: Freeman and Sear Fixed Price List 12, Lot 123
2 commentspaul1888
Faustina_I_RIC1143~0.jpg
ROMAN EMPIRE, Faustina I (Senior), Sestertius - RIC 114341 viewsObv: DIVA FAVSTINA. Draped bust right
Rev: IVNO S - C. Juno standing left holding patera and scepter
Size: 30 mm
Weight: 23,7 gr
Date: 141-161 AD
Ref: RIC III 1143 (Antoninus Pius), Cohen 210
Provenance: Collection of Karl Pollak, note: "Acquired from Rich. Ramisch on 24.09.1946 for 30 schillings"
vs1969
FAUSTINA_JNR_DIVA_Denarius_PEACOCK.JPG
ROMAN EMPIRE, FAUSTINA II (JUNIOR). Commemorative denarius of Rome. Struck A.D.176-180 under Marcus Aurelius10 viewsObverse: DIVA FAVSTINA PIA. Draped bust of Faustina Junior facing right.
Reverse: CONSECRATIO. Peacock standing facing right.
Diameter: 18mm | Weight: 3.2grms | Die Axis: 12
RIC III : 744

Annia Galeria Faustina was the youngest daughter of Antoninus Pius and Faustina Senior. She married Marcus Aurelius in A.D.145 and was given the title of Augusta on the birth of her first child in A.D.146. She went on to have several more children, one of whom was the future emperor Commodus. In A.D.175 Faustina accompanied Marcus Aurelius on his journey to the East but she died at Halala, a village at the foot of the Taurus Mountains.
1 comments*Alex
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ROMAN EMPIRE, FAUSTINA SENIOR Commemorative Æ As.RIC 11798 viewsFAUSTINA SENIOR
Commemorative Æ As. Rev. AVGVSTA S C, Vesta standing left holding palladium and sceptre. RIC 1179
jessvc1
FAUSTINE_SESTERCE_BIGE.jpg
ROMAN EMPIRE, Faustina Senior, AE Sestertius16 viewsSesterce de Faustine Mère. Poids: 26,74g. Diamètre: 33,5mm. RIC 1112.
Avers: DIVA FAVSTINA. Buste à droite de Faustine
Revers: AETERNITAS. Faustine tenant un sceptre, assise à droite dans un chariot tracté par deux éléphants avec leurs cornacs.
Kenobi O
Faustina Sen.jpg
ROMAN EMPIRE, Faustina Senior, AR denarius71 viewsOptimus
bpAnto1B5FausSr.jpg
ROMAN EMPIRE, Faustina Senior, AR denarius34 viewsObverse: DIVA FAVSTINA
Draped bust, right.
Rev: AVGVSTA
Juno enthroned right, holding transverse sceptre.
Denarius, 3.3 gm, 17.3 mm, RIC 363.
Comment: Issued by her husband, Antoninus Pius, to commemorate her funeral and deification in early 141.
Massanutten
Faustina_Denarius_Aeternitas.jpg
ROMAN EMPIRE, Faustina Senior, AR Denarius22 viewsOptimus
faustine~0.jpg
ROMAN EMPIRE, Faustina Senior, AR Denarius24 viewsDenier de Faustine Mère. RIC 384
Avers: DIVA FAVSTINA. Buste drapé de faustine mère à droite avec les cheveux relevés, coiffés en chignon.
Revers: CONSECRATIO. Paon passant à droite, tournant la tête à gauche.
1 commentsKenobi O
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ROMAN EMPIRE, Faustina Senior, AR Denarius15 viewsAnnia Galeria Faustina, AD 100-140, wife of Antoninus Pius.
Obverse: DIVA FAVSTINA, draped bust right.
Reverse: AETERNITAS, Aeternitas, Providentia, or Urania standing front holding globe, veil blowing out around head.
RIC 351
ggergo
Faustina.jpg
ROMAN EMPIRE, Faustina Senior, AR denarius, peacock84 viewsOptimus
image00301.jpg
ROMAN IMPERATORIAL, Brutus and Lentulus Spinther, 42 BCE42 viewsRome, The Imperators.
Brutus and Lentulus Spinther, 42 BCE.
AR Denarius (3.91g; 20mm).
Military Mint (Smyrna?).

Obv: BRVTVS; axe, simpulum and knife.

Rev: LENTVLVS SPINT; jug and lituus.

References: Crawford 500/7; HCRI 198; Sydenham 1310; BMCRR East 80-1; Junia 41.

Provenance: Ex Stoeklin Collection [Nomos14 (17 May 2017) Lot 301]; ex Munzhandlung Basel 6 (18 Mar 1936), Lot 1483; ex Trau Collection [Gilhoffer & Ranschburg & Hess (22 May 1935), Lot 37].

The sacrificial implements on the obverse refer to Brutus' membership in the college of Pontifs. The implements on the reverse refer to Spinther's membership in the augurate since 57 BCE.

Spinther was the son of P. Cornelius Lentulus, whose nickname was Spinther (reportedly because he resembled an actor by that name). It was a nickname that his father clearly liked as both he and his son later used it on coins. His father was an aristocrat of the Cornelia gens, who was liked by Julius Caesar and worked with Cicero in suppressing the Cataline conspiracy. He was later governor of part of Spain. With Caesar’s help, his father was elected consul in 57BC, when he recalled Cicero from exile. Thereafter he governed Cilicia, at which time Cicero wrote him a still-surviving letter. As relations deteriorated between Caesar and Pompey, both Spinthers sided with Pompey. Despite initial offers of amnesty by Caesar, Spinther senior would not remain neutral and was eventually killed or committed suicide during the civil wars. His son later allied with Caesar’s assassins and struck coins for both Brutus and Cassius.
3 commentsCarausius
Maximianus_RIC-59.jpg
Roman Imperial: Maximianus, as Senior Augustus (305-307 CE) Æ Follis, Carthage (RIC 59)12 viewsObv: IMP MAXIMIANVS SEN AVG; laureate head of Maximianus right
Rev: CONSERVATORES KARTT SVAE; Carthago standing facing, head left, holding grain ears in both hands, within hexastyle temple with plain pediment; PKA in exergue
Quant.Geek
34079_Roman_Empire,_Lead_Bulla_Seal,_Late_4th_-_Early_5th_Century_A_D_.jpg
Roman Lead Bulla Seal, Late 4th - Early 5th Century A.D. Three male facing diademed busts36 viewsRoman Empire, Lead Bulla Seal, Late 4th - Early 5th Century A.D. Lead seal, Bulla seal, possibly imperial, gVF, 7.885g, 18.4mm, obverse three male facing diademed busts, the left one smallest, stars above the two larger ones; reverse, no stamp. Interesting seal, perhaps depicting two senior Augusti (center and right) and a junior Augustus (smaller bust left). Two likely combinations are Valentinian I, Valens and Gratian (367 - 375 A.D.) and Theodosius I, Arcadius und Honorius (393 - 395 A.D.). Ex FORVM, photo credit FORVMPodiceps
Roman_Republic_Ceres.jpg
Roman Republic, L. Furius Cn.f. Brocchus, 63 B.C.91 viewsSilver denarius, Crawford 414/1, Sydenham 902a, RSC I Furia 23a, SRCV I 365, EF, nice style, bold strike, light marks, 3.912g, 19.3mm, 180o, Rome mint, 63 B.C.; obverse III - VIR / BROCCI, head of Ceres right, wearing wreath of grain, lock of hair falls down neck, between wheat-ear and barley kernel; reverse L•FVRI / CN• F, curule chair between two fasces with axes.



The curule chair was for senior magistrates including dictators, masters of the horse, consuls, praetors, censors, and the curule aediles. As a form of throne, it might be given as an honor to foreign kings recognized formally as friend (amicus) by the Roman people or senate. Designed for use by commanders in the field, the curule chair could be folded for easy transport. It had no back, low arms, curved legs forming an X, and was traditionally made of or veneered with ivory.

From the Sam Mansourati collection. / NO RR 133.
2 commentsSam
IMGP0349aParthCMcombo.jpg
Sakastan, late 1st cent. BC - early 1st cent. AD, unknown ruler over Phraates IV28 viewsAR dr., 3,55gr, 19,25mm
Sellw. 91.12, Shore 472, Senior 1991 D;
mint: Margiane or Sogdiana, axis: 12h; Sakastan, AR dr., late 1. cent. BC - early 1. cent. AD, AR dr., 3,55gr, 19,25mm;
obv.: bare-headed bust of Phraates IV, left, (Sellw.52.19); diadem, knot, and 2 broad ribbons joined at the end; med.-long hair in 5 waves, mustache, short pointed beard; royal wart; in upper right field eagle carrying wreath or diadem; on left shoulder oval countermark w/Eukratides style helmeted bust, right, surrounded by beads; host coin has BB 12 - 18h;
rev.: archer,right, on throne, w/bow and monogr. Π; 5 lines of corrupted ‘Greek’ legend visible;

ex: CNG Auction 398, #370.

1 commentsSchatz
azes25-1.png
Scythian kingdom, Azes, AR drachm 20-1 BC12 viewsObv. King on Horseback right holding up hand
Rev. Pallas standing right holding shield and spear
Mitchiner MAW 2353 Volume 6 # 847e; Senior 98.207;
1.86 gr. 14 mm.
Skyler
IMG_1359.JPG
Skythians in Sogdiana, AR Obol, 1st century AD31 viewsUncertain Tribe
Skythians in Sogdiana
AR Obol
1st century AD
Stylized bust left
Archer standing right
Senior A8.7
Ardatirion
Sogdia_Eut_Imi_k.jpg
SOGDIA, Imitation of Eutydemos of Bactria7 viewsAR Tetradrachm, 27mm, 8.0g, 12h; c. 100 BC
Obv.: Diademed head of Euthydemos right
Rev.: Hercules seated on omphalos holding club on right; Sogdian legend.
Reference: Rtveladze 37; Senior A18.5T / 17-36-161
John Anthony
DIV-FAUST1_CERES.JPG
Struck A.D.141 or shortly after under Antoninus Pius. DIVA FAUSTINA SENIOR. Commemorative AR Denarius of Rome6 viewsObverse: DIVA FAVSTINA. Draped bust of Faustina, hair waved and coiled on top of her head, facing right.
Reverse: CERES. Ceres standing facing left, holding corn-ears and torch.
Diameter: 17mm | Weight: 3.3gms | Die Axis: 6
RIC III : 378

Ceres was the Roman goddess of agriculture; equivalent to the Greek goddess Demeter.

EVENTS OCCURRING AT THE TIME THIS COIN WAS STRUCK
The Temple now known as that of Antoninus and Faustina was constructed in Rome in A.D.141. The temple was initially dedicated to Faustina the Elder but was rededicated to Antoninus and Faustina after the emperor's death.
*Alex
DIV-FAUST1_AUGUSTA.JPG
Struck A.D.141- 142 under Antoninus Pius. DIVA FAUSTINA SENIOR. Commemorative AR Denarius of Rome5 viewsObv: DIVA FAVSTINA. Draped bust of Faustina, hair waved and coiled on top of her head, facing right.
Rev: AVGVSTA. Vesta standing facing left, holding palladium and sacrificing out of patera over garlanded altar.
Diameter: 16mm | Weight: 3.2gms | Die Axis: 6
RIC III : 370.

This coin was struck soon after her death.

Vesta was the goddess of the hearth, fire, and the household, and therefore the deity of domestic life. Her Greek counterpart was Hestia.
*Alex
DIV-FAUST_1_PROV_1.JPG
Struck A.D.141- 161 under Antoninus Pius. DIVA FAUSTINA SENIOR. Commemorative AE14 of Bostra, Arabia4 viewsObv: ΘЄA ΦAVCTЄINA. Diademed and draped bust of Faustina facing right.
Rev: TVXH NЄAC TPAIANHC BOCTPAC, Tyche (City-goddess) standing facing, head left, holding spear and resting left hand on shield.
Diameter: 14mm | Weight: 2.06gms | Die Axis: 6
ANS 1181 | Spijkerman 11 | BMC 7-9.

Originally a Nabataean city, in A.D.106 Bostra was conquered by the emperor Trajan who renamed it Nova Trajana Bostra and made it the capital of the Roman province of Arabia Petraea. Bostra was the residence of the Legio III Cyrenaica and served as a key Roman fortress east of the Jordan River. Since it was at the juncture of several trade routes connecting Damascus to the Red Sea the city flourished and Bostra eventually achieved the title metropolis under the emperor Philip I, who was a native of the city. Its coins have Greek legends from the time of Antoninus Pius to Elagabalus, and Latin legends from Severus Alexander to the time of Trajan Decius.
Today Bostra is a major archaeological site and has been declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. Its main feature is it's Roman theatre (below) reputed to be the best preserved Roman theatre in the world.
*Alex
Faustina_I_Diva_Temple~0.JPG
Struck A.D.150 or thereabouts under Antoninus Pius. DIVA FAUSTINA SENIOR. Commemorative AR Denarius of Rome2 viewsObverse: DIVA FAVSTINA. Draped bust of Faustina, hair waved and coiled on top of her head, facing right.
Reverse: AED DIV FAVSTINAE. Hexastyle temple of Diva Faustina containing seated statue of Faustina I, trellis-work fencing in the foreground in front of steps.
Diameter: 18mm | Weight: 3.2gms | Die Axis: 6
RIC III : 343
SCARCE

Construction of the temple shown on the reverse of this coin began in the year following the death of the Empress in A.D.141. It was probably completed about A.D.150, the date assigned to this issue by Philip V. Hill in "The Monuments of Ancient Rome as Coin Types".
The temple was later rededicated to Divus Antoninus and Diva Faustina and the shell of the building survives to this day in the Roman Forum, enclosing the Church of S. Lorenzo in Miranda.
*Alex
DIV-FAUSTINA2_PEACOCK.JPG
Struck A.D.176-180 under Marcus Aurelius. DIVA FAUSTINA JUNIOR. Commemorative denarius of Rome8 viewsObverse: DIVA FAVSTINA PIA. Draped bust of Faustina Junior facing right.
Reverse: CONSECRATIO. Peacock standing facing right.
Diameter: 18mm | Weight: 3.24gms | Die Axis: 12
RIC III : 744 | RSC : 71a

Annia Galeria Faustina was the youngest daughter of Antoninus Pius and Faustina Senior. She married Marcus Aurelius in A.D.145 and was given the title of Augusta on the birth of her first child in A.D.146. She went on to have several more children, one of whom was the future emperor Commodus. In A.D.175 Faustina accompanied Marcus Aurelius on his journey to the East but she died at Halala, a village at the foot of the Taurus Mountains.
1 comments*Alex
Faustina_II_Diva_Altar~0.JPG
Struck A.D.176-180 under Marcus Aurelius. DIVA FAUSTINA JUNIOR. Commemorative denarius of Rome5 viewsObverse: DIVA FAVSTINA PIA. Draped bust of Faustina Junior facing right.
Reverse: CONSECRATIO. Altar-enclosure with closed doors.
Diameter: 19mm
RIC III : 746

Annia Galeria Faustina was the youngest daughter of Antoninus Pius and Faustina Senior. She married Marcus Aurelius in A.D.145 and was given the title of Augusta on the birth of her first child in A.D.146. She went on to have several more children, one of whom was the future emperor Commodus. In A.D.175 Faustina accompanied Marcus Aurelius on his journey to the East but she died at Halala, a village at the foot of the Taurus Mountains.
*Alex
Louis_XIV_AE_(Brass)_Jeton.jpg
Struck c.1644 – 1645, Louis XIV (1643 - 1715), AE (Brass) Jeton4 viewsObverse: LVD•XIIII•D:G•FR•ET•NA•REX. Laureate and cuirassed youthful bust of Louis XIV facing right; • B • (for Briot) below.
Reverse: CONSILIO•NIL•NISI•. The escutcheon of France, surrounded by the chain of the Ordre du Saint-Esprit (Order of the Holy Spirit): Necklace and Cross. The legend translates as “He undertakes nothing without Council”, a reference to the administrative council of the king.

Struck at the Monnaie de Louvre mint, Paris, France
Die engraver: Nicholas Briot
Dimensions: 25.65mm | Weight: 5.4gms | Die Axis: 12
Ref. Feuardent: 239 var.

Nicholas Briot (c.1579–1646) was an innovative French coin engraver, medallist and mechanical engineer, who is credited with the invention of the coining-press. He emigrated to England in 1625 and in 1626 he was commissioned to make 'puncheons and dies' for the Coronation of Charles I. His Coronation Medal established his reputation and he went on to produce a considerable number of dies for medals and coins in the following years. In 1633, he was appointed chief engraver to the Royal Mint and went to Scotland to prepare and coin the coronation pieces of Charles I. These demonstrated both his artistic skill and the technical superiority of his new coining machinery and in 1635, on the death of Sir John Foulis, Briot was appointed Master of the Mint in Scotland and superintended the Scottish coinage for several years. Briot was then recalled to England by the King, and on the outbreak of the English Civil War he took possession of the coining apparatus at the Tower and had it removed 'for the purpose of continuing the coining operations in the cause of the King'. Briot travelled to France in the early 1640's and sent coining presses to his brother Isaac, now in a senior position at the Paris Mint, he died on Christmas Eve 1646.
*Alex
sistertiii_169.JPG
TEMPLE, Faustina Senior AR Denarius, wife of Antoninus Pius, Rome 135-140 AD 154 viewsRef Faustina Sr AR Denarius, RIC 343, RSC 1, BMC 339
Diva Faustina Sr Denarius. 150 AD. DIVA FAVSTINA, diademed & draped bust right / AED DIV FAVSTINAE, front view of temple of six columns on five steps, fencing before, statue of Faustina within. RIC 343, RSC 1. sear5 4573

Antonio Protti
FAVSSE07.JPG
TEMPLE, FAUSTINA SENIOR, Temple of Diva Faustina129 viewsorichalcum sestertius (29.73g, 12h). Rome mint. Struck under Antoninus Pius, AD 141-161
DIVA AVGVS-TA FAVSTINA Draped bust of Diva Faustina senior facing right
PIETA(S AVG) / S C Hexastyle temple with on the roof a quadriga and victories holding a globe above their heads on each side
RIC (A. Pius) 1148 (rare), Cohen 254, Foss (Roman Historical Coins) 126:34e
ex Jean Elsen (Bruxelles), Auction 95; ex coll. A. Senden: l'architecture des monnaies Romaines

Issued on the dedication of a temple to Faustina upon her death in A.D. 141
Charles S
faustinaIIgemelos.jpg
TEMPLE, FAUSTINA SENIOR, Temple of Faustina and Antoninus Pius.163 viewsAR denarius. c.146 AD. 3.60 g, 6h. Draped bust right. DIVA FAVSTINA. / Hexastyle temple; with figure within; surmounted by a central facing quadriga, winged Victories on corners; statues on lower left and right; fencing in front. AED DIV FAVSTINAE. RIC III 343 (A.Pius). RSC 1.
The building was built after the death of Empress Faustina (141 A.C.) and was dedicated by the Senate to the deceased, who they declared a divinity. It was also dedicated to Emperor Antoninus Pio, as is stated on its facade. Around the seventh and eighth centuries, it became a Christian church, but its appearance today is mostly a result of the baroque modifications of Orazio Torriani (1601-14).
2 commentsbenito
LIVIDU04-2.jpg
Tiberius, RIC 46, for Antonia or Agrippina, dupondius of AD 22-23 (Justitia)59 viewsÆ dupondius (13.2g, Ø30mm, 6h). Rome mint. Struck under Tiberius, AD 22-23.
IVSTITIAE, diademed bust of of Antonia or Agrippina as Justitia, facing right
TI CAESAR DIVI·AVG·F·AVG·P·M·TR·POT·XXIIII around large S·C
RIC (Tiberius) 46 (S); Cohen (Livia) 9
ex G. Henzen (1997)

Vagi argues that this type commemorates the justice achieved on behalf of the murdered Germanicus. Since Germanicus was very popular in Rome, his murder lead to a public outcry in Rome. The portret on this coin is not Livia's (it would have been followed by AVGVSTAE as for the Salus dupondius) but a stylized portret probably referring to Germanicus' mother Antonia or his wife Agrippina Senior.
1 commentsCharles S
21.jpg
Trajan Denarius - Trajan's Father (RIC II 252)51 viewsAR Denarius
Rome 112-117AD
3.26g

Obv: Laureate bust of Trajan (R), draped far shoulder.
IMP TRAIANUS AUG GER DAC PM TRP COS V PP

Rev: TRAJAN'S FATHER seated (L) holding patera and sceptre. Commemorates the death of the emperor's father circa 100 AD.

Traianus Senior was born in Italica in the Roman Province of Hispania Baetica. Traianus married a Roman woman called Marcia. They had two children, a daughter called Ulpia Marciana and a son, the future Roman Emperor Trajan.

Traianus was the first member of his family to enter the Roman Senate. Due to his successes, Vespasian awarded Traianus with the governorship of an unknown Roman province and a consulship in 70. In later years, he served as a Roman Governor of Hispania Baetica, Syria, in 79 or 80 governed an unknown African province and then western Anatolia.


RIC II 139 RSC 94
Kained but Able
Ancient_Counterfeits_Trajan_Fourree_Divus_Pater.jpg
Trajan Fourree Denarius RIC 25223 viewsImitating a denarius, 112-114
Obv: IMP TRAIANO AVG GER DAC P M TR P COS VI P P
Laur. r., dr. l. s.
Rev: DIVVS PATER TRAIAN
Trajan Senior seated l., holding patera and sceptre.
19mm, 2.90g
1 commentsklausklage
Maues.JPG
Tyche, Zeus140 viewsMaues, Drachm, Senior 3.1d
Tyche enthroned, holding torque and sceptre / Zeus Nikephoros
Pekka K
A_and_V_Antioch_1st_Wkshp_Large.jpg
Vabalathus and Aurelian Antioch 1st Officina9 viewsVabalathus: 270 - 272 AD; Aurelian: 270 - 275 AD
Julius Aurelius Septimius Vabalathus Athenodorus (Wahb Allat), son of Septimius Odaenathus and Septimia Zenobia. Palmyrene Empire.
Obv: VABALATHVS V C R IM D R1; Bust of Vabalathus, laureate, diademed, draped and curiassed, facing right.
Rev: IMP C AVRELIANVS AVG; Bust of Aurelian, radiate and curiassed, facing right, from the front, A in exergue.
Denomination: billion antoninianus; Mint: Antioch; Officina: 1st; Issue: 1st; Date: Nov. 270 - Mar. 272; Weight: 2.73g; Diameter: 20.5mm; Die axis: 0º; References, for example: RIC V v.1 381 correc; MER - RIC 3102; SRCV III 11718

Notes:

1VABALATHVS V[IR] C[LARISSIMUS] R[EX] IM[PERATOR] D[UX] R[OMANORUM]. See for example, Bland (2011), pp. 135, 141 and Estiot (2004, v1), p. 118, esp. note 462. Although David S. Potter in The Roman Empire at Bay: AD 180 - 395. New York: Routledge, 2004, page 267 and footnote 24 postulates V[IR] C[ONSULARIS] for the mint at Antioch I would certainly side with Bland and Estiot.

Which side of this coin is the obverse and which side is the reverse?
Percy Webb in RIC, vol. V, part 1 (1927) puts great weight on the titulature of Aurelian and mentions that mint marks on the obverse of coins were not unknown at Antioch. He considers the coin to have been struck as a sign of vassalage instead of having been struck as an insult. Webb states that Aurelian’s bust is on the obverse of the coin (p. 260). Anne Robertson, Roman Imperial Coins in the Hunter Coin Cabinet, Vol. IV Valerian I to Allectus, pp. cxix and 142 also considers Aurelian’s bust to be on the obverse of the coin, but does not state an explicit reason for her position. Harold Mattingly, “The Palmyrene Princes and the Mints of Antioch and Alexandria” (1936), holds that the mint mark is the determining factor, and therefore believes that Aurelian’s bust is on the reverse of the coin (p.113). David Sear RCV III, p. 442 follows the reasoning of Mattingly and although David Vagi, Coinage and History of the Roman Empire, Volume One: History, agrees that Aurelian’s bust is on the reverse of the coin (p. 403) he does not explicitly state his reason for believing so. Sylviane Estiot, Monnaies de L’Empire romain XII.1: D’Aurelian à Florien (270 - 276 apres J.-C.) [2004], states that the officina mark under the bust of Aurelian clearly indicates that his portrait is on the reverse of the coin (p.118). Roger Bland, “The Coinage of Vabalathus and Zenobia from Antioch and Alexandria” (2011), follow suit. When discussing this issue from Antioch he states that the officina mark is always placed on the reverse of coins. He notes that the placement of the officina mark sent a signal that Aurelian was “...being accorded a lower status than Vabalathus, although he was given his correct titles of Imperator and Augustus, and he wore a radiate crown, also traditionally associated with the senior Augustus” (p. 142 - 3). Alaric Watson argues in Aurelian and the Third Century (1999), pp. 67 - 9 that Queen Zenobia’s assertion of Palmyrene independence from Rome took place gradually. Bland believes that the placement of the officina mark under the bust of Aurelian on this coin was just another step in that assertion of independence.

Photo credits: Forum Ancient Coins
Tracy Aiello
A_and_V_Antioch_2nd_Wkshp_Large.jpg
Vabalathus and Aurelian Antioch 2nd Officina 9 viewsVabalathus: 270 - 272 AD; Aurelian: 270 - 275 AD
Julius Aurelius Septimius Vabalathus Athenodorus (Wahb Allat), son of Septimius Odaenathus and Septimia Zenobia. Palmyrene Empire.
Obv: VABALATHVS V C R IM D R1; Bust of Vabalathus, laureate, diademed, draped and curiassed, facing right, seen from behind.
Rev: IMP C AVRELIANVS AVG; Bust of Aurelian, radiate and curiassed, facing right, from the front, B in exergue.
Denomination: billion antoninianus; Mint: Antioch; Officina: 2nd; Issue: 1st; Date: Nov. 270 - Mar. 272; Weight: 3.855g; Diameter: 20.5mm; Die axis: 180º; References, for example: RIC V v.1 381 correc; MER - RIC 3103; SRCV III 11718

Notes:

1VABALATHVS V[IR] C[LARISSIMUS] R[EX] IM[PERATOR] D[UX] R[OMANORUM]. See for example, Bland (2011), pp. 135, 141 and Estiot (2004, v1), p. 118, esp. note 462. Although David S. Potter in The Roman Empire at Bay: AD 180 - 395. New York: Routledge, 2004, page 267 and footnote 24 postulates V[IR] C[ONSULARIS] for the mint at Antioch I would certainly side with Bland and Estiot.

Which side of this coin is the obverse and which side is the reverse?
Percy Webb in RIC, vol. V, part 1 (1927) puts great weight on the titulature of Aurelian and mentions that mint marks on the obverse of coins were not unknown at Antioch. He considers the coin to have been struck as a sign of vassalage instead of having been struck as an insult. Webb states that Aurelian’s bust is on the obverse of the coin (p. 260). Anne Robertson, Roman Imperial Coins in the Hunter Coin Cabinet, Vol. IV Valerian I to Allectus, pp. cxix and 142 also considers Aurelian’s bust to be on the obverse of the coin, but does not state an explicit reason for her position. Harold Mattingly, “The Palmyrene Princes and the Mints of Antioch and Alexandria” (1936), holds that the mint mark is the determining factor, and therefore believes that Aurelian’s bust is on the reverse of the coin (p. 113). David Sear RCV III, p. 442 follows the reasoning of Mattingly and although David Vagi, Coinage and History of the Roman Empire, Volume One: History, agrees that Aurelian’s bust is on the reverse of the coin (p. 403) he does not explicitly state his reason for believing so. Sylviane Estiot, Monnaies de L’Empire romain XII.1: D’Aurelian à Florien (270 - 276 apres J.-C.) [2004], states that the officina mark under the bust of Aurelian clearly indicates that his portrait is on the reverse of the coin (p. 118). Roger Bland, “The Coinage of Vabalathus and Zenobia from Antioch and Alexandria” (2011), follow suit. When discussing this issue from Antioch he states that the officina mark is always placed on the reverse of coins. He notes that the placement of the officina mark sent a signal that Aurelian was “...being accorded a lower status than Vabalathus, although he was given his correct titles of Imperator and Augustus, and he wore a radiate crown, also traditionally associated with the senior Augustus” (p. 142 - 3). Alaric Watson argues in Aurelian and the Third Century (1999), pp. 67 - 9 that Queen Zenobia’s assertion of Palmyrene independence from Rome took place gradually. Bland believes that the placement of the officina mark under the bust of Aurelian on this coin was just another step in that assertion of independence.

Photo credits: Forum Ancient Coins
Tracy Aiello
A_and_V_Antioch_3rd_Wkshp_Large.jpg
Vabalathus and Aurelian Antioch 3rd Officina11 viewsVabalathus: 270 - 272 AD; Aurelian: 270 - 275 AD
Julius Aurelius Septimius Vabalathus Athenodorus (Wahb Allat), son of Septimius Odaenathus and Septimia Zenobia. Palmyrene Empire.
Obv: VABALATHVS V C R IM D R1; Bust of Vabalathus, laureate, diademed, draped and curiassed, facing right, seen from behind.
Rev: IMP C AVRELIANVS AVG; Bust of Aurelian, radiate and curiassed, facing right, from the front, Γ in exergue.
Denomination: billion antoninianus; Mint: Antioch; Officina: 3rd; Issue: 1st; Date: Nov. 270 - Mar. 272; Weight: 3.146g; Diameter: 21.2mm; Die axis: 180º; References, for example: RIC V v.1 381 correc; MER - RIC 3105; SRCV III 11718

Notes:

1VABALATHVS V[IR] C[LARISSIMUS] R[EX] IM[PERATOR] D[UX] R[OMANORUM]. See for example, Bland (2011), pp. 135, 141 and ESTIOT (2004, v1), p. 118, esp. note 462. Although David S. Potter in The Roman Empire at Bay: AD 180 - 395. New York: Routledge, 2004, page 267 and footnote 24 postulates V[IR] C[ONSULARIS] for the mint at Antioch I would certainly side with Bland and Estiot.

Which side of this coin is the obverse and which side is the reverse?
Percy Webb in RIC, vol. V, part 1 (1927) puts great weight on the titulature of Aurelian and mentions that mint marks on the obverse of coins were not unknown at Antioch. He considers the coin to have been struck as a sign of vassalage instead of having been struck as an insult. Webb states that Aurelian’s bust is on the obverse of the coin (p. 260). Anne Robertson, Roman Imperial Coins in the Hunter Coin Cabinet, Vol. IV Valerian I to Allectus, pp. cxix and 142 also considers Aurelian’s bust to be on the obverse of the coin, but does not state an explicit reason for her position. Harold Mattingly, “The Palmyrene Princes and the Mints of Antioch and Alexandria” (1936), holds that the mint mark is the determining factor, and therefore believes that Aurelian’s bust is on the reverse of the coin (p. 113). David Sear RCV III, p. 442 follows the reasoning of Mattingly and although David Vagi, Coinage and History of the Roman Empire, Volume One: History, agrees that Aurelian’s bust is on the reverse of the coin (p. 403) he does not explicitly state his reason for believing so. Sylviane Estiot, Monnaies de L’Empire romain XII.1: D’Aurelian à Florien (270 - 276 apres J.-C.) [2004], states that the officina mark under the bust of Aurelian clearly indicates that his portrait is on the reverse of the coin (p. 118). Roger Bland, “The Coinage of Vabalathus and Zenobia from Antioch and Alexandria” (2011), follow suit. When discussing this issue from Antioch he states that the officina mark is always placed on the reverse of coins. He notes that the placement of the officina mark sent a signal that Aurelian was “...being accorded a lower status than Vabalathus, although he was given his correct titles of Imperator and Augustus, and he wore a radiate crown, also traditionally associated with the senior Augustus” (p. 142 - 3). Alaric Watson argues in Aurelian and the Third Century (1999), pp. 67 - 9 that Queen Zenobia’s assertion of Palmyrene independence from Rome took place gradually. Bland believes that the placement of the officina mark under the bust of Aurelian on this coin was just another step in that assertion of independence.

Photo credits: Forum Ancient Coins
Tracy Aiello
A_and__V_Antioch_4th_Wkshp_Large.jpg
Vabalathus and Aurelian Antioch 4th Officina6 viewsVabalathus: 270 - 272 AD; Aurelian: 270 - 275 AD
Julius Aurelius Septimius Vabalathus Athenodorus (Wahb Allat), son of Septimius Odaenathus and Septimia Zenobia. Palmyrene Empire.
Obv: VABALATHVS V C R IM D R1; Bust of Vabalathus, laureate, diademed, draped and curiassed, facing right, seen from behind.
Rev: IMP C AVRELIANVS AVG; Bust of Aurelian, radiate and curiassed, facing right, from the front, Δ in exergue.
Denomination: billion antoninianus; Mint: Antioch; Officina: 4th; Issue: 1st; Date: Nov. 270 - Mar. 272; Weight: 3.563g; Diameter: 21.8mm; Die axis: 180º; References, for example: RIC V v.1 381 correc; MER - RIC 3106; SRCV III 11718

Notes:

1VABALATHVS V[IR] C[LARISSIMUS] R[EX] IM[PERATOR] D[UX] R[OMANORUM]. See for example, Bland (2011), pp. 135, 141 and Estiot (2004, v1), p. 118, esp. note 462. Although David S. Potter in The Roman Empire at Bay: AD 180 - 395. New York: Routledge, 2004, page 267 and footnote 24 postulates V[IR] C[ONSULARIS] for the mint at Antioch I would certainly side with Bland and Estiot.

Which side of this coin is the obverse and which side is the reverse?
Percy Webb in RIC, vol. V, part 1 (1927) puts great weight on the titulature of Aurelian and mentions that mint marks on the obverse of coins were not unknown at Antioch. He considers the coin to have been struck as a sign of vassalage instead of having been struck as an insult. Webb states that Aurelian’s bust is on the obverse of the coin (p. 260). Anne Robertson, Roman Imperial Coins in the Hunter Coin Cabinet, Vol. IV Valerian I to Allectus, pp. cxix and 142 also considers Aurelian’s bust to be on the obverse of the coin, but does not state an explicit reason for her position. Harold Mattingly, “The Palmyrene Princes and the Mints of Antioch and Alexandria” (1936), holds that the mint mark is the determining factor, and therefore believes that Aurelian’s bust is on the reverse of the coin (p. 113). David Sear RCV III, p. 442 follows the reasoning of Mattingly and although David Vagi, Coinage and History of the Roman Empire, Volume One: History, agrees that Aurelian’s bust is on the reverse of the coin (p. 403) he does not explicitly state his reason for believing so. Sylviane Estiot, Monnaies de L’Empire romain XII.1: D’Aurelian à Florien (270 - 276 apres J.-C.) [2004], states that the officina mark under the bust of Aurelian clearly indicates that his portrait is on the reverse of the coin (p. 118). Roger Bland, “The Coinage of Vabalathus and Zenobia from Antioch and Alexandria” (2011), follow suit. When discussing this issue from Antioch he states that the officina mark is always placed on the reverse of coins. He notes that the placement of the officina mark sent a signal that Aurelian was “...being accorded a lower status than Vabalathus, although he was given his correct titles of Imperator and Augustus, and he wore a radiate crown, also traditionally associated with the senior Augustus” (p. 142 - 3). Alaric Watson argues in Aurelian and the Third Century (1999), pp. 67 - 9 that Queen Zenobia’s assertion of Palmyrene independence from Rome took place gradually. Bland believes that the placement of the officina mark under the bust of Aurelian on this coin was just another step in that assertion of independence.

Photo credits: Forum Ancient Coins
Tracy Aiello
A_and_V_Antioch_5th_WKshp_Large.jpg
Vabalathus and Aurelian Antioch 5th Officina8 viewsVabalathus: 270 - 272 AD; Aurelian: 270 - 275 AD
Julius Aurelius Septimius Vabalathus Athenodorus (Wahb Allat), son of Septimius Odaenathus and Septimia Zenobia. Palmyrene Empire.
Obv: VABALATHVS V C R IM D R1; Bust of Vabalathus, laureate, diademed, draped and curiassed, facing right, seen from behind.
Rev: IMP C AVRELIANVS AVG; Bust of Aurelian, radiate and curiassed, facing right, from the front, ϵ in exergue.
Denomination: billion antoninianus; Mint: Antioch; Officina: 5th; Issue: 1st; Date: Nov. 270 - Mar. 272; Weight: 3.262; Diameter: 20.3mm; Die axis: 315º; References, for example: RIC V v.1 381 correc; MER - RIC 3107; SRCV III 11718

Notes:

1VABALATHVS V[IR] C[LARISSIMUS] R[EX] IM[PERATOR] D[UX] R[OMANORUM]. See for example, Bland (2011), pp. 135, 141 and Estiot (2004, v1), p. 118, esp. note 462. Although David S. Potter in The Roman Empire at Bay: AD 180 - 395. New York: Routledge, 2004, page 267 and footnote 24 postulates V[IR] C[ONSULARIS] for the mint at
Antioch I would certainly side with Bland and Estiot.

Which side of this coin is the obverse and which side is the reverse?
Percy Webb in RIC, vol. V, part 1 (1927) puts great weight on the titulature of Aurelian and mentions that mint marks on the obverse of coins were not unknown at Antioch. He considers the coin to have been struck as a sign of vassalage instead of having been struck as an insult. Webb states that Aurelian’s bust is on the obverse of the coin (p. 260). Anne Robertson, Roman Imperial Coins in the Hunter Coin Cabinet, Vol. IV Valerian I to Allectus, pp. cxix and 142 also considers Aurelian’s bust to be on the obverse of the coin, but does not state an explicit reason for her position. Harold Mattingly, “The Palmyrene Princes and the Mints of Antioch and Alexandria” (1936), holds that the mint mark is the determining factor, and therefore believes that Aurelian’s bust is on the reverse of the coin (p. 113). David Sear RCV III, p. 442 follows the reasoning of Mattingly and although David Vagi, Coinage and History of the Roman Empire, Volume One: History, agrees that Aurelian’s bust is on the reverse of the coin (p. 403) he does not explicitly state his reason for believing so. Sylviane Estiot, Monnaies de L’Empire romain XII.1: D’Aurelian à Florien (270 - 276 apres J.-C.) [2004], states that the officina mark under the bust of Aurelian clearly indicates that his portrait is on the reverse of the coin (p. 118). Roger Bland, “The Coinage of Vabalathus and Zenobia from Antioch and Alexandria” (2011), follow suit. When discussing this issue from Antioch he states that the officina mark is always placed on the reverse of coins. He notes that the placement of the officina mark sent a signal that Aurelian was “...being accorded a lower status than Vabalathus, although he was given his correct titles of Imperator and Augustus, and he wore a radiate crown, also traditionally associated with the senior Augustus” (p. 142 - 3). Alaric Watson argues in Aurelian and the Third Century (1999), pp. 67 - 9 that Queen Zenobia’s assertion of Palmyrene independence from Rome took place gradually. Bland believes that the placement of the officina mark under the bust of Aurelian on this coin was just another step in that assertion of independence.

Photo credits: Forum Ancient Coins
Tracy Aiello
A_and_V_Antioch_6th_Wksp_Large.jpg
Vabalathus and Aurelian Antioch 6th Officina11 viewsVabalathus: 270 - 272 AD; Aurelian: 270 - 275 AD
Julius Aurelius Septimius Vabalathus Athenodorus (Wahb Allat), son of Septimius Odaenathus and Septimia Zenobia. Palmyrene Empire.
Obv: VABALATHVS V C R IM D R1; Bust of Vabalathus, laureate, diademed, draped and curiassed, facing right, seen from behind.
Rev: IMP C AVRELIANVS AVG; Bust of Aurelian, radiate and curiassed, facing right, from the front, S in exergue.
Denomination: billion antoninianus; Mint: Antioch; Officina: 6th; Issue: 1st; Date: Nov. 270 - Mar. 272; Weight: 2.812g; Diameter: 21.3mm; Die axis: 150º; References, for example: RIC V v.1 381 correc; MER - RIC 3108; SRCV III 11718

Notes:

1VABALATHVS V[IR] C[LARISSIMUS] R[EX] IM[PERATOR] D[UX] R[OMANORUM]. See for example, Bland (2011), pp. 135, 141 and Estiot (2004, v1), p. 118, esp. note 462. Although David S. Potter in The Roman Empire at Bay: AD 180 - 395. New York: Routledge, 2004, page 267 and footnote 24 postulates V[IR] C[ONSULARIS] for the mint at Antioch I would certainly side with Bland and Estiot.

Which side of this coin is the obverse and which side is the reverse?
Percy Webb in RIC, vol. V, part 1 (1927) puts great weight on the titulature of Aurelian and mentions that mint marks on the obverse of coins were not unknown at Antioch. He considers the coin to have been struck as a sign of vassalage instead of having been struck as an insult. Webb states that Aurelian’s bust is on the obverse of the coin (p. 260). Anne Robertson, Roman Imperial Coins in the Hunter Coin Cabinet, Vol. IV Valerian I to Allectus, pp. cxix and 142 also considers Aurelian’s bust to be on the obverse of the coin, but does not state an explicit reason for her position. Harold Mattingly, “The Palmyrene Princes and the Mints of Antioch and Alexandria” (1936), holds that the mint mark is the determining factor, and therefore believes that Aurelian’s bust is on the reverse of the coin (p.0113). David Sear RCV III, p. 442 follows the reasoning of Mattingly and although David Vagi, Coinage and History of the Roman Empire, Volume One: History, agrees that Aurelian’s bust is on the reverse of the coin (p. 403) he does not explicitly state his reason for believing so. Sylviane Estiot, Monnaies de L’Empire romain XII.1: D’Aurelian à Florien (270 - 276 apres J.-C.) [2004], states that the officina mark under the bust of Aurelian clearly indicates that his portrait is on the reverse of the coin (p. 118). Roger Bland, “The Coinage of Vabalathus and Zenobia from Antioch and Alexandria” (2011), follow suit. When discussing this issue from Antioch he states that the officina mark is always placed on the reverse of coins. He notes that the placement of the officina mark sent a signal that Aurelian was “...being accorded a lower status than Vabalathus, although he was given his correct titles of Imperator and Augustus, and he wore a radiate crown, also traditionally associated with the senior Augustus” (p. 142 - 3). Alaric Watson argues in Aurelian and the Third Century (1999), pp. 67 - 9 that Queen Zenobia’s assertion of Palmyrene independence from Rome took place gradually. Bland believes that the placement of the officina mark under the bust of Aurelian on this coin was just another step in that assertion of independence.

Photo credits: Forum Ancient Coins
Tracy Aiello
A_and_V_Antioch_7th_Wksp_Large.jpg
Vabalathus and Aurelian Antioch 7th Officina12 viewsVabalathus: 270 - 272 AD; Aurelian: 270 - 275 AD
Julius Aurelius Septimius Vabalathus Athenodorus (Wahb Allat), son of Septimius Odaenathus and Septimia Zenobia. Palmyrene Empire.
Obv: VABALATHVS V C R IM D R1; Bust of Vabalathus, laureate, diademed, draped and curiassed, facing right, seen from behind.
Rev: IMP C AVRELIANVS AVG; Bust of Aurelian, radiate and curiassed, facing right, from the front, Z in exergue.
Denomination: billion antoninianus; Mint: Antioch; Officina: 7th; Issue: 1st; Date: Nov. 270 - Mar. 272; Weight: 4.137g; Diameter: 20.3mm; Die axis: 0º; References, for example: RIC V v.1 381 correc; MER - RIC 3110; SRCV III 11718

Notes:

1VABALATHVS V[IR] C[LARISSIMUS] R[EX] IM[PERATOR] D[UX] R[OMANORUM]. See for example, Bland (2011), pp. 135, 141 and Estiot (2004, v1), p. 118, esp. note 462. Although David S. Potter in The Roman Empire at Bay: AD 180 - 395. New York: Routledge, 2004, page 267 and footnote 24 postulates V[IR] C[ONSULARIS] for the mint at Antioch I would certainly side with Bland and Estiot.

Which side of this coin is the obverse and which side is the reverse?
Percy Webb in RIC, vol. V, part 1 (1927) puts great weight on the titulature of Aurelian and mentions that mint marks on the obverse of coins were not unknown at Antioch. He considers the coin to have been struck as a sign of vassalage instead of having been struck as an insult. Webb states that Aurelian’s bust is on the obverse of the coin (p. 260). Anne Robertson, Roman Imperial Coins in the Hunter Coin Cabinet, Vol. IV Valerian I to Allectus, pp. cxix and 142 also considers Aurelian’s bust to be on the obverse of the coin, but does not state an explicit reason for her position. Harold Mattingly, “The Palmyrene Princes and the Mints of Antioch and Alexandria” (1936), holds that the mint mark is the determining factor, and therefore believes that Aurelian’s bust is on the reverse of the coin (p. 113). David Sear RCV III, p. 442 follows the reasoning of Mattingly and although David Vagi, Coinage and History of the Roman Empire, Volume One: History, agrees that Aurelian’s bust is on the reverse of the coin (p. 403) he does not explicitly state his reason for believing so. Sylviane Estiot, Monnaies de L’Empire romain XII.1: D’Aurelian à Florien (270 - 276 apres J.-C.) [2004], states that the officina mark under the bust of Aurelian clearly indicates that his portrait is on the reverse of the coin (p. 118). Roger Bland, “The Coinage of Vabalathus and Zenobia from Antioch and Alexandria” (2011), follow suit. When discussing this issue from Antioch he states that the officina mark is always placed on the reverse of coins. He notes that the placement of the officina mark sent a signal that Aurelian was “...being accorded a lower status than Vabalathus, although he was given his correct titles of Imperator and Augustus, and he wore a radiate crown, also traditionally associated with the senior Augustus” (p. 142 - 3). Alaric Watson argues in Aurelian and the Third Century (1999), pp. 67 - 9 that Queen Zenobia’s assertion of Palmyrene independence from Rome took place gradually. Bland believes that the placement of the officina mark under the bust of Aurelian on this coin was just another step in that assertion of independence.

Photo credits: Forum Ancient Coins
Tracy Aiello
A_and_V_Antioch_8th_Wksp.jpeg
Vabalathus and Aurelian Antioch 8th Officina16 viewsVabalathus: 270 - 272 AD; Aurelian: 270 - 275 AD
Julius Aurelius Septimius Vabalathus Athenodorus (Wahb Allat), son of Septimius Odaenathus and Septimia Zenobia. Palmyrene Empire.
Obv: VABALATHVS V C R IM D R1; Bust of Vabalathus, draped and curiassed, facing right.
Rev: IMP C AVRELIANVS AVG; Bust of Aurelian, radiate and curiassed, facing right, from the rear, H in exergue.
Denomination: billion antoninianus; Mint: Antioch; Officina: 8th; Issue: 1st; Date: Nov. 270 - Mar. 272; Weight: 3.96g; Diameter: 21mm; Die axis: 180º; References, for example: RIC V v.1 381 correc; MER - RIC 3113; SRCV III 11718

Notes:

1VABALATHVS V[IR] C[LARISSIMUS] R[EX] IM[PERATOR] D[UX] R[OMANORUM]. See for example, Bland (2011), pp. 135, 141 and Estiot (2004, v1), p. 118, esp. note 462. Although David S. Potter in The Roman Empire at Bay: AD 180 - 395. New York: Routledge, 2004, page 267 and footnote 24 postulates V[IR] C[ONSULARIS] for the mint at Antioch I would certainly side with Bland and Estiot.

Which side of this coin is the obverse and which side is the reverse?
Percy Webb in RIC, vol. V, part 1 (1927) puts great weight on the titulature of Aurelian and mentions that mint marks on the obverse of coins were not unknown at Antioch. He considers the coin to have been struck as a sign of vassalage instead of having been struck as an insult. Webb states that Aurelian’s bust is on the obverse of the coin (p. 260). Anne Robertson, Roman Imperial Coins in the Hunter Coin Cabinet, Vol. IV Valerian I to Allectus, pp. cxix and 142 also considers Aurelian’s bust to be on the obverse of the coin, but does not state an explicit reason for her position. Harold Mattingly, “The Palmyrene Princes and the Mints of Antioch and Alexandria” (1936), holds that the mint mark is the determining factor, and therefore believes that Aurelian’s bust is on the reverse of the coin (p. 113). David Sear RCV III, p. 442 follows the reasoning of Mattingly and although David Vagi, Coinage and History of the Roman Empire, Volume One: History, agrees that Aurelian’s bust is on the reverse of the coin (p. 403) he does not explicitly state his reason for believing so. Sylviane Estiot, Monnaies de L’Empire romain XII.1: D’Aurelian à Florien (270 - 276 apres J.-C.) [2004], states that the officina mark under the bust of Aurelian clearly indicates that his portrait is on the reverse of the coin (p. 118). Roger Bland, “The Coinage of Vabalathus and Zenobia from Antioch and Alexandria” (2011), follow suit. When discussing this issue from Antioch he states that the officina mark is always placed on the reverse of coins. He notes that the placement of the officina mark sent a signal that Aurelian was “...being accorded a lower status than Vabalathus, although he was given his correct titles of Imperator and Augustus, and he wore a radiate crown, also traditionally associated with the senior Augustus” (p. 142 - 3). Alaric Watson argues in Aurelian and the Third Century (1999), pp. 67 - 9 that Queen Zenobia’s assertion of Palmyrene independence from Rome took place gradually. Bland believes that the placement of the officina mark under the bust of Aurelian on this coin was just another step in that assertion of independence.

Photo credits: Aegean Numismatics
Tracy Aiello
Valerian_I_Varbanov_I_88.jpg
Valerian I, AE28, Varbanov I 8871 viewsValerian I
Senior Augustus, 253 – 260 A.D.

Coin: AE28

Obverse: IMP P LIC VALERIANVS AVG, laureate, draped and cuirassed bust facing right.
Reverse: PROVINCIA DACIA, personification of Dacia, standing between an Eagle and a Lion, holding a Laurel Branch with her right hand and a Sceptre with her left. ANVIII in exergue.

Weight: 10.12 g, Diameter: 28.2 x 25.3 x 2.2 mm, Die axis: 0°, Mint: Dacia, Year: VIII (253-254 A.D.), Reference: Varbanov I 88

Rated Rare (R7, 20 - 50 examples known)

Legion V Macedonia (emblem: Eagle, based in Potaissa)* & Legion XIII Gemina (emblem: Lion, based in Apulum)
* Valerian gave Legion V Macedonia the name "III* Pia III Fidelis"
Masis
vespasian_ric_544.jpg
Vespasian AR Denarius115 viewsVespasian, 69-79 A.D. AR Denarius, 3.16g. 21.41mm. Rome, 73 A.D.
Obv: IMP CAES VESP AVG CENS. Laureate head of Vespasian to right.
Rev: MAXIM PONTIF. Nemisis walking to right holding caduceus over snake. RIC 544. 
Ex: E. E. Clain-Stefanelli collection. Ex: Numismatica Ars Classica - Auction 92 Part 2, Lot 2133 May 24, 2016; Ex: Ed waddell




This denarius of Vespasian is interesting because of the reverse. The reverse features Nemesis walking with a snake. This reverse was also used earlier by Claudius. In fact, Vespasian revived many of the earlier coin types for his own coinage.

The other interesting fact about this denarius is the provenance. This coin once belonged to E. E. Clain-Stefanelli. She was senior Curator of the National Numismatic Collection in the Numismatics Division of the National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC. She also published works concerning ancient coins and their history.
4 commentsorfew
abhiras_isvaaradatta.jpg
WESTERN KSHATRAPAS43 viewsWESTERN KSHATRAPAS - Ishvaradatta, 242-243 AD. AR Drachm. Head of king right, blundered Greek legend around Reverse Crescented three-arched hill (chaitya), river below, crescent moon at left, sun at right, Brahmi legend around (at 2:30, clockwise): Rajno Mahakshatrapasa Isvaradattasa varshe prathame Date possibly S. 164 = 242 CE. Reference Senior 352. Comments The identity and dating of Isvaradatta is highly uncertain. The most widely held current theory is that he was a usurper, since he does not name his father on his coins and appears to want to start a new era. This coin, for example, includes in the legend the words varshe prathame (year one) and has the digit for 1 behind the head on the obverse. There is the further question of his date. Senior has published a coin (Sen 352.1) that appears to have the Saka era date 164 behind the head, and the varshe prathame legend on the reverse. This gives us a clue for the date. The coins are quite scarce.
dpaul7
SeverusAlexanderRIC70RSC325s.jpg
[1009a] Severus Alexander, 13 March 222 - March 235 A.D.82 viewsSilver denarius, RIC 70, RSC 325, S -, EF, Rome mint, 2.803g, 20.7mm, 0o, 227 A.D.; Obverse: IMP C M AVR SEV ALEXAND AVG, laureate and draped bust right; Reverse: P M TR P VI COS II P P, Emperor standing left, sacrificing from patera in right over a tripod, scroll in left; cameo-like obverse with toned portrait and legend and bright fields, slightly frosty surfaces, details of head on reverse figure unstruck, slightly irregular flan. Ex FORVM.

In this year Ardashir invaded Parthia and established the Sassanid Dynasty, which claimed direct descent from Xerxes and Darius. The Eastern power grew stronger and the threat to the Romans immense.

Marcus Aurelius Severus Alexander was promoted from Caesar to Augustus after the murder of his cousin, Elagabalus. His reign was marked by great economic prosperity, and he enjoyed great success against the barbarian tribes. His mother Julia Mamaea was the real power in the empire, controlling her son's policies and even his personal life with great authority. Severus had an oratory where he prayed under the edict, written on the wall, "Do not unto others what you would not have done to yourself" and the images of various prophets including Mithras, Zoroaster, Abraham and Jesus. Mutinous soldiers led by Maximinus I murdered both Severus Alexander and his mother (Joseph Sermarini).

De Imeratoribus Romanis,
An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Emperors

Alexander Severus (A.D. 222-235)

Herbert W. Benario
Emory University

Introduction and Sources
"But as Alexander was a modest and dutiful youth, of only seventeen years of age, the reins of government were in the hands of two women, of his mother Mamaea, and of Maesa, his grandmother. After the death of the latter, who survived but a short time the elevation of Alexander, Mamaea remained the sole regent of her son and of the empire." (Gibbon, Decline and Fall, chap. 6: Modern Library Edition, p. 130)

"As the imperial system developed, it disclosed its various arcana one by one. How much does the personality of the ruler matter? Less and less, it should seem. Be he boy, buffoon, or philosopher, his conduct may not have much effect on the administration. Habit and routine took over, with groups and grades of bureaucrats at hand to fill the posts." (Syme, Emperors and Biography, 146)

The passages quoted above emphasize two important aspects of the principate of Severus Alexander (or Alexander Severus), his youth and the influence of women during his reign. The significance of the latter invites brief discourse about the four women known as the "Severan Julias," whose origin was Syria. Julia Domna became the second wife of Septimius Severus and bore him two sons, the later emperors Caracalla and Geta. Her role in the administration of her husband was significant, which her expansive titulature, "mother of the camp and the senate and the country," reflected. Her sister, Julia Maesa, had two daughters, each of whom produced a son who was to become emperor. Julia Soaemias was the mother of Elagabalus, and shared his fate when he was assassinated. Julia Mamaea bore Alexander, who succeeded his cousin; he was very young and hence much under the control of grandmother and mother. For the first time in its imperial history, the empire of Rome was de facto, though not de iure, governed by women.

The literary sources, while numerous, are limited in value. Chief among them, at least in scope, is the biography in the Historia Augusta, much the longest of all the lives in this peculiar collection. Though purporting to be the work of six authors in the early fourth century, it is now generally considered to have been produced by one author writing in the last years of this century. Spacious in its treatment of the emperor and extremely favorable to him on the whole, it has little historical merit, seeming rather an extended work of fiction. It must be used with the utmost caution.

Herodian, whose history covered the period 180-238, was a contemporary of Severus Alexander, and his coverage of the latter's reign is extensive. Another contemporary, Dio Cassius, who was consul in 229 and whose judgments would have been most valuable, is unfortunately useless here, since his history survives only in abbreviated form and covers barely a page of printed text for the whole reign (Book 80). Aurelius Victor, Eutropius, the Epitome de Caesaribus, and other Latin sources are extremely brief, informing us of only the occasional anecdote. Christian writers make minimal contribution; legal texts offer much instruction, particularly those dealing with or stemming from Ulpian; coins, inscriptions, papyri, and archaeology help fill the gaps left by the literary sources.

Early Life and Education
The future emperor was born in Arca Caesarea in Phoenicia on October 1, 208 although some sources put the date three years earlier (as Gibbon assumed, see above), the son of Gessius Marcianus, whose career advanced in the equestrian cursus, and of Julia Mamaea, niece of the then empress, Julia Domna, wife of Septimius Severus. He was raised quietly and well educated, at the instance of his mother. He came into the public eye only in 218, when, after Macrinus' murder of Caracalla and accession to the purple, he and his mother were declared hostes publici. In June of that year, Elagabalus defeated Macrinus and succeeded him as emperor. Alexander and Mamaea were soon rehabilitated. As his cousin's activities, religious, political, and personal, became increasingly unacceptable, Alexander was drawn ever more into public life. In mid 221, he assumed the toga virilis, was adopted by Elagabalus as a colleague, was granted the name Alexander, and elevated to the rank of Caesar. There had been talk that he was the illegitimate child of Caracalla, which won him support among the army, and this was confirmed, at least for public consumption, by his filiation in the official titulature back to Septimius. He was now styled Imp. Caes. M. Aurelii Antonini Pii Felicis Aug. fil., divi Antonini Magni Pii nepos, divi Severi pronepos M. Aurelius Alexander, nobilissimus Caesar imperi et sacerdotis, princeps iuventutis. The connection with Septimius Severus was crucial, since he was the only one of these predecessors who had been deified. Alexander was about 12½ years old. Less than a year later, on March 13, 222, with the murder of Elagabalus, Alexander was hailed as emperor by the army. He considered this date as his dies imperii. He became thereby the youngest emperor in Rome's history. He was immediately thereafter given the titles of Augustus, pater patriae, and pontifex maximus.

His Principate; Grandmother, Mother, Ulpian
Having had no experience in government, the young emperor was largely dependent upon the two senior women in his life to guide his actions. His grandmother, Julia Maesa, may well have died as early as 223, so that his mother, Julia Mamaea, played the major role in the empire's administration from early on until the end. The only other figures who could rival her were the two Praetorian Prefects, both eminent jurists, Ulpian and Paulus, who are well-known to us because of the numerous citations of their legal views and administrative decisions preserved in the Corpus Iuris Civilis. Both were members of Alexander's consilium. Alexander attempted to restore some of the senate's prestige and functions, but with little success. He was even unable to protect Ulpian against the anger of the praetorians, who then murdered the jurist in 223.

Had his principate been peaceful, he might have developed into a significant emperor, certainly in comparison with his immediate predecessors. He was married once, in 225 to Sallustia Orbiana, who received the official titulature Sallustia Barbia Orbiana Augusta, but she was banished to Libya two years later. Her father, L. Seius Sallustius, was perhaps raised to the rank of Caesar by Alexander and was put to death in 227 on a charge of attempted murder of the emperor. The only other recorded uprising against Alexander is that of Taurinus, who was hailed as Augustus but drowned himself in the Euphrates.

According to the HA life, Alexander was a "good" person, and his mother certainly attempted to guide him well, but much of the last decade of his reign was preoccupied with serious military threats against the empire's prestige, nay existence. In those dangerous circumstances, his abilities, which had not earlier been honed, proved inadequate.

Domestic Policy
Perhaps the greatest service which Alexander furnished Rome, certainly at the beginning of his reign, was the return to a sense of sanity and tradition after the madness and fanaticism of Elagabalus. He is said to have honored and worshipped a variety of individuals, including Christ. His amiability assisted his relationship with the senate, which gained in honor under him without any real increase in its power. Besides jurists in high office, literary figures were also so distinguished; Marius Maximus, the biographer, and Dio Cassius, the historian, gained second consulships, the former in 223, the latter in 229.

The emperor's building program made its mark upon the face of Rome. The last of the eleven great aqueducts, the aqua Alexandrina, was put into service in 226; he also rebuilt the thermae Neronianae in the Campus Martius in the following year and gave them his own name. Of the other constructions, perhaps the most intriguing are the Diaetae Mammaeae, apartments which he built for his mother on the Palatine.

The Persian and German Wars
The first great external challenge appeared in the east, where the Parthian dynasty, which had ruled the Iranian plateau and other large areas for centuries, and who for long had been one of Rome's great rivals, was overthrown by the Persian family of the Sassanids by 227. They aspired to restore their domain to include all the Asian lands which had been ruled in the glory days of the Persian Empire. Since this included Asia Minor as well as all other eastern provinces, the stage was set for continuing clashes with Rome.

These began late in the decade, with significant success early on for the Sassanids. But Rome gradually developed a defense against these incursions, and ultimately the emperor, with his mother and staff, went to the east in 231. There actual military command rested in the hands of his generals, but his presence gave additional weight to the empire's policy. Persia's early successes soon faded as Rome's armies brought their power and experience to bear. The result was an acceptance of the status quo rather than a settlement between the parties. This occurred in 233 and Alexander returned to Rome. His presence in the west was required by a German threat, particularly along the Rhine, where the tribes took advantage of the withdrawal of Roman troops for the eastern war.

In 234, Alexander and Julia Mammaea moved to Moguntiacum (Mainz), the capital of Upper Germany. The military situation had improved with the return of troops from the east, and an ambitious offensive campaign was planned, for which a bridge was built across the Rhine. But Alexander preferred to negotiate for peace by buying off the enemy. This policy outraged the soldiers, who mutinied in mid March 235 and killed the emperor and his mother. He had reached the age of 26½ years and had been emperor for almost precisely half his life. He was deified by the senate and received other posthumous honors. With the accession of Maximinus Thrax, the Severan dynasty came to an end.

Death and Evaluation
Tacitus' famous dictum about Galba, that he was properly considered capax imperii, capable of being emperor, until he showed, when emperor, that he was not, could never have been applied to Severus Alexander. A child when chance brought him to the principate, with only two recommendations, that he was different from Elagabalus and that he was part of the Severan family, he proved to be inadequate for the challenges of the time. Military experience was the prime attribute of an emperor now, which Alexander did not have, and that lack ultimately cost him his life. Guided by his mother and employing the services of distinguished men, he returned dignity to the imperial household and to the state. He did the best he could, but that best was not good enough in the early decades of the third century A.D., with the great threats from east and north challenging Rome's primacy and, indeed, existence.

Copyright (C) 2001, Herbert W. Benario. Published on De Imeratoribus Romanis, An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Emperors; http://www.roman-emperors.org/alexsev.htm . Used by permission.

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.
Cleisthenes
SevAl.jpg
[1009b] Severus Alexander, 13 March 222 - March 235 A.D.109 viewsSilver denarius, RIC 19, S -, aF, Rome, 2.806g, 20.0mm, 0o, 223 A.D.; obverse IMP C M AVR SEV ALEXAND AVG, laureate and draped bust right; reverse P M TR P II COS P P, Jupiter standing left cloak over arms, holding long scepter and thunderbolt. Nice portrait. Ex FORVM.

Marcus Aurelius Severus Alexander was promoted from Caesar to Augustus after the murder of his cousin, Elagabalus. His reign was marked by great economic prosperity, and he enjoyed great success against the barbarian tribes. His mother Julia Mamaea was the real power in the empire, controlling her son's policies and even his personal life with great authority. Severus had an oratory where he prayed under the edict, written on the wall, "Do not unto others what you would not have done to yourself" and the images of various prophets including Mithras, Zoroaster, Abraham and Jesus. Mutinous soldiers led by Maximinus I murdered both Severus Alexander and his mother (Joseph Sermarini).


De Imeratoribus Romanis,
An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Emperors

Alexander Severus (A.D. 222-235)

Herbert W. Benario
Emory University

Introduction and Sources
"But as Alexander was a modest and dutiful youth, of only seventeen years of age, the reins of government were in the hands of two women, of his mother Mamaea, and of Maesa, his grandmother. After the death of the latter, who survived but a short time the elevation of Alexander, Mamaea remained the sole regent of her son and of the empire." (Gibbon, Decline and Fall, chap. 6: Modern Library Edition, p. 130)

"As the imperial system developed, it disclosed its various arcana one by one. How much does the personality of the ruler matter? Less and less, it should seem. Be he boy, buffoon, or philosopher, his conduct may not have much effect on the administration. Habit and routine took over, with groups and grades of bureaucrats at hand to fill the posts." (Syme, Emperors and Biography, 146)

The passages quoted above emphasize two important aspects of the principate of Severus Alexander (or Alexander Severus), his youth and the influence of women during his reign. The significance of the latter invites brief discourse about the four women known as the "Severan Julias," whose origin was Syria. Julia Domna became the second wife of Septimius Severus and bore him two sons, the later emperors Caracalla and Geta. Her role in the administration of her husband was significant, which her expansive titulature, "mother of the camp and the senate and the country," reflected. Her sister, Julia Maesa, had two daughters, each of whom produced a son who was to become emperor. Julia Soaemias was the mother of Elagabalus, and shared his fate when he was assassinated. Julia Mamaea bore Alexander, who succeeded his cousin; he was very young and hence much under the control of grandmother and mother. For the first time in its imperial history, the empire of Rome was de facto, though not de iure, governed by women.

The literary sources, while numerous, are limited in value. Chief among them, at least in scope, is the biography in the Historia Augusta, much the longest of all the lives in this peculiar collection. Though purporting to be the work of six authors in the early fourth century, it is now generally considered to have been produced by one author writing in the last years of this century. Spacious in its treatment of the emperor and extremely favorable to him on the whole, it has little historical merit, seeming rather an extended work of fiction. It must be used with the utmost caution.

Herodian, whose history covered the period 180-238, was a contemporary of Severus Alexander, and his coverage of the latter's reign is extensive. Another contemporary, Dio Cassius, who was consul in 229 and whose judgments would have been most valuable, is unfortunately useless here, since his history survives only in abbreviated form and covers barely a page of printed text for the whole reign (Book 80). Aurelius Victor, Eutropius, the Epitome de Caesaribus, and other Latin sources are extremely brief, informing us of only the occasional anecdote. Christian writers make minimal contribution; legal texts offer much instruction, particularly those dealing with or stemming from Ulpian; coins, inscriptions, papyri, and archaeology help fill the gaps left by the literary sources.

Early Life and Education
The future emperor was born in Arca Caesarea in Phoenicia on October 1, 208 although some sources put the date three years earlier (as Gibbon assumed, see above), the son of Gessius Marcianus, whose career advanced in the equestrian cursus, and of Julia Mamaea, niece of the then empress, Julia Domna, wife of Septimius Severus. He was raised quietly and well educated, at the instance of his mother. He came into the public eye only in 218, when, after Macrinus' murder of Caracalla and accession to the purple, he and his mother were declared hostes publici. In June of that year, Elagabalus defeated Macrinus and succeeded him as emperor. Alexander and Mamaea were soon rehabilitated. As his cousin's activities, religious, political, and personal, became increasingly unacceptable, Alexander was drawn ever more into public life. In mid 221, he assumed the toga virilis, was adopted by Elagabalus as a colleague, was granted the name Alexander, and elevated to the rank of Caesar. There had been talk that he was the illegitimate child of Caracalla, which won him support among the army, and this was confirmed, at least for public consumption, by his filiation in the official titulature back to Septimius. He was now styled Imp. Caes. M. Aurelii Antonini Pii Felicis Aug. fil., divi Antonini Magni Pii nepos, divi Severi pronepos M. Aurelius Alexander, nobilissimus Caesar imperi et sacerdotis, princeps iuventutis. The connection with Septimius Severus was crucial, since he was the only one of these predecessors who had been deified. Alexander was about 12½ years old. Less than a year later, on March 13, 222, with the murder of Elagabalus, Alexander was hailed as emperor by the army. He considered this date as his dies imperii. He became thereby the youngest emperor in Rome's history. He was immediately thereafter given the titles of Augustus, pater patriae, and pontifex maximus.

His Principate; Grandmother, Mother, Ulpian
Having had no experience in government, the young emperor was largely dependent upon the two senior women in his life to guide his actions. His grandmother, Julia Maesa, may well have died as early as 223, so that his mother, Julia Mamaea, played the major role in the empire's administration from early on until the end. The only other figures who could rival her were the two Praetorian Prefects, both eminent jurists, Ulpian and Paulus, who are well-known to us because of the numerous citations of their legal views and administrative decisions preserved in the Corpus Iuris Civilis. Both were members of Alexander's consilium. Alexander attempted to restore some of the senate's prestige and functions, but with little success. He was even unable to protect Ulpian against the anger of the praetorians, who then murdered the jurist in 223.

Had his principate been peaceful, he might have developed into a significant emperor, certainly in comparison with his immediate predecessors. He was married once, in 225 to Sallustia Orbiana, who received the official titulature Sallustia Barbia Orbiana Augusta, but she was banished to Libya two years later. Her father, L. Seius Sallustius, was perhaps raised to the rank of Caesar by Alexander and was put to death in 227 on a charge of attempted murder of the emperor. The only other recorded uprising against Alexander is that of Taurinus, who was hailed as Augustus but drowned himself in the Euphrates.

According to the HA life, Alexander was a "good" person, and his mother certainly attempted to guide him well, but much of the last decade of his reign was preoccupied with serious military threats against the empire's prestige, nay existence. In those dangerous circumstances, his abilities, which had not earlier been honed, proved inadequate.

Domestic Policy
Perhaps the greatest service which Alexander furnished Rome, certainly at the beginning of his reign, was the return to a sense of sanity and tradition after the madness and fanaticism of Elagabalus. He is said to have honored and worshipped a variety of individuals, including Christ. His amiability assisted his relationship with the senate, which gained in honor under him without any real increase in its power. Besides jurists in high office, literary figures were also so distinguished; Marius Maximus, the biographer, and Dio Cassius, the historian, gained second consulships, the former in 223, the latter in 229.

The emperor's building program made its mark upon the face of Rome. The last of the eleven great aqueducts, the aqua Alexandrina, was put into service in 226; he also rebuilt the thermae Neronianae in the Campus Martius in the following year and gave them his own name. Of the other constructions, perhaps the most intriguing are the Diaetae Mammaeae, apartments which he built for his mother on the Palatine.

The Persian and German Wars
The first great external challenge appeared in the east, where the Parthian dynasty, which had ruled the Iranian plateau and other large areas for centuries, and who for long had been one of Rome's great rivals, was overthrown by the Persian family of the Sassanids by 227. They aspired to restore their domain to include all the Asian lands which had been ruled in the glory days of the Persian Empire. Since this included Asia Minor as well as all other eastern provinces, the stage was set for continuing clashes with Rome.

These began late in the decade, with significant success early on for the Sassanids. But Rome gradually developed a defense against these incursions, and ultimately the emperor, with his mother and staff, went to the east in 231. There actual military command rested in the hands of his generals, but his presence gave additional weight to the empire's policy. Persia's early successes soon faded as Rome's armies brought their power and experience to bear. The result was an acceptance of the status quo rather than a settlement between the parties. This occurred in 233 and Alexander returned to Rome. His presence in the west was required by a German threat, particularly along the Rhine, where the tribes took advantage of the withdrawal of Roman troops for the eastern war.

In 234, Alexander and Julia Mammaea moved to Moguntiacum (Mainz), the capital of Upper Germany. The military situation had improved with the return of troops from the east, and an ambitious offensive campaign was planned, for which a bridge was built across the Rhine. But Alexander preferred to negotiate for peace by buying off the enemy. This policy outraged the soldiers, who mutinied in mid March 235 and killed the emperor and his mother. He had reached the age of 26½ years and had been emperor for almost precisely half his life. He was deified by the senate and received other posthumous honors. With the accession of Maximinus Thrax, the Severan dynasty came to an end.

Death and Evaluation
Tacitus' famous dictum about Galba, that he was properly considered capax imperii, capable of being emperor, until he showed, when emperor, that he was not, could never have been applied to Severus Alexander. A child when chance brought him to the principate, with only two recommendations, that he was different from Elagabalus and that he was part of the Severan family, he proved to be inadequate for the challenges of the time. Military experience was the prime attribute of an emperor now, which Alexander did not have, and that lack ultimately cost him his life. Guided by his mother and employing the services of distinguished men, he returned dignity to the imperial household and to the state. He did the best he could, but that best was not good enough in the early decades of the third century A.D., with the great threats from east and north challenging Rome's primacy and, indeed, existence.

Copyright (C) 2001, Herbert W. Benario. Published on De Imeratoribus Romanis, An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Emperors; http://www.roman-emperors.org/alexsev.htm . Used by permission.

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.
Cleisthenes
TrajanDeciusRIC11b.jpg
[1108a] Trajan Decius, July 249 - June or July 251 A.D. 142 viewsSilver antoninianus, RIC 11b, RSC 4, choice EF, Rome mint, 3.923g, 23.3mm, 0o, 249 - 251 A.D.; Obverse: IMP C M Q TRAIANVS DECIVS AVG, radiate and cuirassed bust right, from behind; Reverse: ADVENTVS AVG, Trajan Decius on horseback left, raising right hand and holding scepter. Ex FORVM.


De Imperatoribus Romanis,
An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Emperors

Trajan Decius (249-251 A.D.) and Usurpers During His Reign

Geoffrey Nathan and Robin McMahon

Geoffrey Nathan
San Diego State University



Early Life and Public Career

Any discussion of Decius (and for most third century emperors) must be prefaced by an understanding that the historical tradition is incomplete, fragmentary, and not wholly trustworthy. Any reconstruction of his life and reign will therefore be to some degree speculative. With that caveat in mind, Gaius Messius Quintus Decius was born, to a provincial yet aristocratic Senatorial family during the transitional Severan age, possibly in 201. His family may have been from Italian stock, although that is by no means certain. Attempts to describe his life previous to the consulship are problematic, although he did serve as governor in Moesia in the mid-230's. That also means that Decius probably had been a member of the Senate for some time. We know little else about his early life, other than at some point he married Herennia Cupressenia Etruscilla, apparently from the Senatorial ordo as well. His political fortunes rose in the troubled 240's. As instability grew in the mid-third century, Philip the Arab charged Decius, suffect consul for 249, with restoring order along the Danubian frontier. In addition to the border unrest, a low-level army officer, Tiberius Claudius Marinus Pacatianus, had led a rebellion of the armies in Pannonia and Moesia. For a short time, Marinus apparently claimed the imperial purple and along with movements of the Gepidae, represented a clear threat to the stability of Philip's rule.

Philip's decision to send Decius was perhaps more motivated by political expediency than by any great confidence in his military abilities. Decius had an aristocratic pedigree, and so was likely to have been a popular choice with a Senate that was increasingly doubtful of Philip's abilities. He was also a native of Sirmium in Pannonia Inferior, and so was likely familiar with the intricacies of life and politics in the region. Finally, he had, of course, served as governor of the wayward province, and thus undoubtedly had connections there among the civil and military curia--ones that Philip hoped Decius could exploit. Thus, the consul was charged with restoring order along one of the Empire's most problematic borders. Accompanied by his son, Herennius, Decius traveled to Moesia, probably to reclaim the Legio IV Flavia Felix and possibly the Legio XI, both of which were stationed in that province.

Shortly before his arrival, Marinus was killed and local troops quickly named Decius emperor, encouraging him to assert this newfound responsibility in a war against Philip. Philip's inability to deal decisively with the worsening military crises on the borders, the fear of punishment, and the opportunity for enrichment no doubt motivated the soldiers to place the purple on a local leader--a now increasingly common practice. Decius' lineage also probably appealed to traditionalists in Rome, who begrudged Philip his humble origins and his possible involvement in the death of Gordian III. Philip led out an army in June of 249 to meet his newest rival for the purple and at an unknown location (possibly Verona or Beroea) lost the battle. Whether Philip died in the fighting or was assassinated by his own troops--another increasingly common practice--is unknown. Philip's son, Philip Junior, recently made an Augustus, was quickly put to death by the Praetorian Guard in Rome. Decius was the first emperor to come from the Balkans region. How much he wanted to serve is unknown. While this account undoubtedly contains fictional elements, with several popular literary topoi, the rough outlines of the story are undoubtedly true: we have epigraphic evidence in July for support among the Pannonian Legio X, suggesting that Decius owed his accession in no small part to local troops

Publicity and Power
The victory of an established Senatorial aristocrat was one that seemed to reassert the authority and place of traditional political power, despite the means of Decius' ascension. The new emperor, no doubt aware of the perils of his position, seems to have embarked upon a highly conservative program of imperial propaganda to endear himself to the Roman aristocracy and to the troops who had thrust the purple upon him. One of his earliest acts was to take the honorific name of Trajan, whose status as the greatest of all emperors after Augustus was now becoming firmly established. The fact that Trajan had commanded legions in Upper Germany and had close links to both Pannonia and Moesia at the time of his accession invited the comparison. The name was cleverly chosen: Trajan had been an active and successful general throughout his reign, but had also established a reputation for a widely popular civil government.

Decius also served as consul in every year of his reign and took for himself traditional republican powers, another way to underscore his authority and conservatism. He even tried to revive the long defunct office of censor in 251, purportedly offering it to the future emperor, Valerian. Decius moreover portrayed himself as an activist general and soldier. In addition to leading military campaigns personally, he often directly bestowed honors upon his troops, high and low alike. He also holds the dubious distinction of being the first emperor to have died fighting a foreign army in battle. Finally, in 250, he associated his sons Herennius and Hostilianus in his rule by making them Caesars, eventually raising the former (and elder) to Augustus. Undoubtedly, Decius sought to create a dynasty in much the same way the Gordians had in the previous decade. This traditionalism may to be a large extent, however, a construction rather than a reality. When we abandon the literary tradition and look instead at other forms of evidence, his imperial aims are less clear. The legal record, extremely thin, is only vaguely supportive of a conservative policy: most of his surviving enactments deal with private law issues consistent with earlier Severan jurisprudence.

On the other hand in late 249, when Decius returned to Rome, he embarked upon an active building program in the capital. After a destructive fire, he extensively restored the Colosseum. He later commissioned the opulent Decian Baths along the Aventine. He perhaps also was responsible for the construction of the Decian Portico. Such activities contrasted to a twenty-year period of relative building inactivity. Both the kind of building projects and their stylistic qualities suggest an attempt to recall the glories of the past. The numismatic evidence also suggests some degree of traditionalism. It is there that we see the first references to Trajan Decius, as well as an association with both Pannonia and Dacia. His Liberitas and Uberitas issues, combined with his wife's Pudicitia and his sons' Princeps Iuventi coins, all seem to rearticulate traditional ideology. Legends tend to be conservative, so this is hardly surprising, but there were no great innovations to suggest a new set of ideological principles. In sum, while the literary reconstructions of Decius' life are problematic, it seems clear that traditionalism was an important factor in his administration, especially in the wake of Philip's reign.

The Persecution of Christians
Another possible aspect of this conservatism was a reported wide-scale attack on the growing Christian minority. The third century saw the slow creation of sizeable communities in the Empire's urban populations. For the first time, if we are to believe Christian sources, an Empire-wide persecution of Christians was begun under Decius. The state required all citizens to sacrifice to the state gods and be in receipt of a libellus, a certificate from a temple confirming the act. The rationale for the emperor's actions, however, is not entirely clear. Eusebius writes he did so because he hated Philip, who purportedly was a secret Christian. Probably the enmity was real, but it seems unconnected to the introduction of these policies. More likely, if Decius did indeed seek to persecute Christians, he was reacting to the growing visibility of the religion, especially in the city of Rome itself. One of the more prominent martyrs of the age was Fabian, the bishop of the imperial capital.

But the new policy of public religiosity was much more probably a program to reassert traditional public piety, consistent with some of the other conservative initiatives introduced during the emperor's short reign. The libelli themselves were largely generalized in nature and language, and there is no implication that they were directed at any one group per se. Whatever intended effect it may have had on Christianity was thus to a degree unplanned. Christians would have no doubt seen it differently. It is possible then that fourth and fifth century Christian polemicists have misinterpreted (whether purposefully or not) Decius' libelli. In the particular cases of Eusebius and Lactantius, both wrote in the wake of the great persecution of Diocletian and no doubt magnified upon the theme of the tyrant-persecutor. A hostile tradition notwithstanding, the new requirements did impact Christians most acutely, causing considerable division in the growing ranks of the new religion.

Imperial and Military Problems
Like other third century emperors, Decius was not free of threats to his authority, either from within or without. The revolt of Jotapianus, either in Syria or Cappadocia, had actually begun in Philip's reign, but was quickly quelled after Decius' accession. Probably the usurper's own soldiers murdered the would-be emperor, since the accounts state that his body was delivered to Decius while still in Rome in the summer of 249.
A potentially more serious revolt broke out while Decius was out of Rome in 250 fighting the Goths. Julius Valens Licinianus, also a member of the Senatorial aristocracy with some popular support, took the purple at the Empire's capital. It appears to have been relatively short-lived grab for power, ending in a few days with his execution. The governor of Macedon, Titus Julius Priscus, also permitted himself to be proclaimed Augustus at Philippopolis towards the end of 251, probably with Gothic collusion. The Senate declared him a public enemy almost as soon as he chose usurpation. He probably survived Decius, but is likely to have perished when Gallus became emperor.

Of greater concern than sporadic rebellions, which were relatively minor, were the vitreous northern borders. For the first time, a new and aggressive Germanic people, the Goths, crossed into and raided Roman territory in the 250's. At the time of Decius' forced accession, the Gepidae and the Carpi were both raiding deep into the Moesian provinces. They, along with the Goths, raided Pannonia and Dacia as well. Decius was forced to fight campaigns each year of his reign, doing his best to keep the borders stable.

His final campaign in 251 led to the death of his son, Herennius, and to his own. Decius led a successful attack on the Carpi, pushing them out of Dacia. But Moesia Inferior had been left largely undefended and Cniva, king of the Goths, led a sizeable portion of his army into the province. The emperor, after chasing the Germanic force around the region, engaged Cniva's forces outside of Philippopolis, which had recently been sacked by the king and held by the rebel, Priscus. It was here that his elder son was slain by an arrow and the emperor, seeking to reassure his troops, famously proclaimed that the death of one soldier was not a great loss to the Republic. Cniva then led his troops homeward, laden with the spoils of war. The loss became Decius' undoing. Trebonianus Gallus, one of the emperor's commanders, may have revolted, although it is not entirely clear. Instead of regrouping his forces and re-securing the borders, Decius unwisely sought to chase down Cniva before he left Roman territory. His decision may have been motivated by his son's death (despite his insistence otherwise) or it may have been an attempt to salvage what had been a failed campaign. In either case, it was ill-advised.

It was at Abrittus, about 100 kilometers northeast of Nicopolis that Decius finally met his death. Hoping to cut off Cniva's escape route (and perhaps minimize any help from Gallus), Decius' army was itself cut off in the marshy terrain. The details are sketchy, but Cniva divided his seventy thousand man army into three groups and surrounded the emperor's force. On July 1st, the emperor and most of his troops were slain. In the aftermath, the survivors named Trebonianus Gallus emperor, a decision subsequently confirmed by the Senate. Some contemporaries called the death tragic; others heroic. An Altar of Decius was erected where the emperor fell, still apparently famous two centuries later. Decius and Herennius may have even been deified. Christian polemicists, as might be expected, took pleasure in describing Decius' body being stripped and left on the battlefield to be devoured by animals. Whatever else, his was the first death of an emperor at the hands of an enemy of Rome. But even the account of his death, along with that of his son, must be looked on suspiciously. Their deaths bring to mind the sacrificial devotions of the famous Republican Decii father and son, P. Decius Mus senior and junior. The circumstances of Decius' death, therefore, are perhaps as opaque as those of his accession.

Assessment
In spite of gaining some modicum of praise from both ancient and modern observers, Decius' reign was not well-suited to the demands of a rapidly changing empire. Conservatism may have been popular among a certain portion of the Roman elite, but the old aristocracy's power and influence all but disappeared in the third century. Decius clearly had a broader vision of what he wanted to accomplish in his reign than many of his contemporaries, and certainly he was vigorous, but he was also a man who was not sufficiently flexible when the moment called for it. His religious policy caused major disruptions in Rome and; in contrast to some of the other barracks emperors, Decius proved himself less than apt when dealing with Rome's Germanic foes. His death may have been heroic, but it was unnecessary and unsuccessful. This best sums up Decius Trajan's reign.

Ancient Sources

Relatively little remains about Decius' reign. If there were a biography of Decius in the SHA, it no longer survives, although there are scattered references to his rule in the biographies of Claudius II Gothicus and Aurelian. Zosimus, i: 21-23, Aurelius Victor, 29-30, Zonaras 12, Eutropius 9, Jordanes Get. 17-8, and Sylvius Polemius 37-40 have brief accounts of his reign. There are fragments in John of Antioch, fr. 148 and Dexippus, fr. 18. Eusebius, vi: 39-41, vii:1, 11, 22, and viii:4, discusses his persecution, and there are passing references to his persecution in Socrates and Lactantius. Inscriptions and coinage are relatively abundant.

Copyright (C) 2002, Geoffrey Nathan and Robin McMahon. Published on De Imperatoribus Romanis, An Online Encyclopedia of the Roman Emperors and their Families; http://www.roman-emperors.org/decius.htm. Used by permission.

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.
1 commentsCleisthenes
TheodosiusRIC83b.jpg
[1601a] Theodosius I, 19 January 379 - 17 January 395 A.D. 65 viewsBronze AE 2, RIC 83(b), EF, Constantinople mint, 4.389g, 22.1mm, 180o, 25 Aug 383 - 28 Aug 388 A.D.; Obverse: D N THEODO-SIVS P F AVG, pearl-diademed, draped and cuirassed bust right; Reverse: VIRTVS E-XERCITI, Emperor standing right holding standard and globe, foot on captive, cross in left field, CONSA in exergue. Ex FORVM.


De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families

THEODOSIUS I (379-395 A.D.)
David Woods
University College of Cork


Origin and Early Career
Flavius Theodosius was born at Cauca in Spain in about 346 to Thermantia and Theodosius the Elder (so-called to distinguish him from his son). Theodosius the Elder was a senior military officer serving in the Western empire and rose to become the magister equitum praesentalis under the emperor Valentinian I from late 368 until his execution in early 375. As the son of a soldier, Theodosius was legally obliged to enter upon a military career. He seems to have served under his father during his expedition to Britain in 367/8, and was the dux Moesiae Primae by late 374. Unfortunately, great controversy surrounds the rest of his career until Gratian had him hailed as his imperial colleague in succession to the emperor Valens at Sirmium on 19 January 379. It is clear that he was forced to retire home to Spain only to be recalled to active service shortly thereafter, but the circumstances of his forced retirement are shrouded in mystery. His father was executed at roughly the same time, and much speculation has centred on the relationship between these events.

[For a very detailed and interesting discussion of the Foreign Policy of Theodosius and the Civil Wars that plagued his reign, please see http://www.roman-emperors.org/theo1.htm]

Family and Succession
Theodosius married twice. His first wife was the Spanish Aelia Flavia Flaccilla. She bore him Arcadius ca. 377, Honorius on 9 September 384, and Pulcheria ca. 385. Theodosius honoured her with the title of Augusta shortly after his accession, but she died in 386. In late 387 he married Galla, daughter of Valentinian I and full-sister of Valentinian II. She bore him Gratian ca. 388, Galla Placidia ca. 388/390, and died in childbirth in 394, together with her new-born son John. Of his two sons who survived infancy, he appointed Arcadius as Augustus on 19 January 383 and Honorius as Augustus on 23 January 393. His promotion of Arcadius as a full Augustus at an unusually young age points to his determination right from the start that one of his own sons should succeed him. He sought to strengthen Arcadius' position in particular by means of a series of strategic marriages whose purpose was to tie his leading "generals" irrevocably to his dynasty. Hence he married his niece and adoptive daughter Serena to his magister militum per Orientem Stilicho in 387, her elder sister Thermantia to a "general" whose name has not been preserved, and ca. 387 his nephew-in-law Nebridius to Salvina, daughter of the comes Africae Gildo. By the time of his death by illness on 17 January 395, Theodosius had promoted Stilicho from his position as one of the two comites domesticorum under his own eastern administration to that of magister peditum praesentalis in a western administration, in an entirely traditional manner, under his younger son Honorius. Although Stilicho managed to increase the power of the magister peditum praesentalis to the disadvantage of his colleague the magister equitum praesentalis and claimed that Theodosius had appointed him as guardian for both his sons, this tells us more about his cunning and ambition than it does about Theodosius' constitutional arrangements.

Theodosius' importance rests on the fact that he founded a dynasty which continued in power until the death of his grandson Theodosius II in 450. This ensured a continuity of policy which saw the emergence of Nicene Christianity as the orthodox belief of the vast majority of Christians throughout the middle ages. It also ensured the essential destruction of paganism and the emergence of Christianity as the religion of the state, even if the individual steps in this process can be difficult to identify. On the negative side, however, he allowed his dynastic interests and ambitions to lead him into two unnecessary and bloody civil wars which severely weakened the empire's ability to defend itself in the face of continued barbarian pressure upon its frontiers. In this manner, he put the interests of his family before those of the wider Roman population and was responsible, in many ways, for the phenomenon to which we now refer as the fall of the western Roman empire.


Copyright (C) 1998, David Woods.
Published: De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families http://www.roman-emperors.org/startup.htm. Used by permission.

There is a nice segue here, as we pick-up John Julius Norwich's summation of the reign of Theodosius, "Readers of this brief account of his career may well find themselves wondering, not so much whether he deserved the title of 'the Great' as how he ever came to acquire it in the first place. If so, however, they may also like to ask themselves another question: what would have been the fate of the Empire if, at that critical moment in its history after the battle of Adrianople, young Gratian had not called him from his Spanish estates and put the future of the East into his hands? . . . the probability is that the whole Empire of the East would have been lost, swallowed up in a revived Gothic kingdom, with effects on world history that defy speculation.

In his civil legislation he showed, again and again, a consideration for the humblest of his subjects that was rare indeed among rulers of the fourth century. What other prince would have decreed that any criminal, sentenced to execution, imprisonment or exile, must first be allowed thirty days' grace to put his affairs in order? Or that a specified part of his worldly goods must go to his children, upon whom their father's crimes must on no account be visited? Or that no farmer should be obliged to sell his produce to the State at a price lower than he would receive on the open market?

Had he earned his title? Not, perhaps, in the way that Constantine had done or as Justinian was to do. But, if not ultimately great himself, he had surely come very close to greatness; and had he reigned as long as they did his achievements might well have equalled theirs. He might even have saved the Western Empire. One thing only is certain: it would be nearly a century and a half before the Romans would look upon his like again" (Norwich, John Julius. Byzantium, the Early Centuries. London: Penguin Group, 1990. 116-7;118).

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.
Cleisthenes
VespasianJudaeaCaptaHendin754.jpg
[18H759a] Vespasian, 1 July 69 - 24 June 79 A.D., Judaea Capta45 viewsVespasian. 69-71 AD. AR Denarius;17mm, 3.28g; Hendin 759, RIC 15. Obverse: Laureate head right; Reverse: Jewess seated right, on ground, mourning below right of trophy, IVDAEA below. Ex Imperial Coins.

De Imperatoribus Romanis:
An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families

Titus Flavius Vespasianus (A.D. 69-79)

John Donahue
College of William and Mary

Introduction

Titus Flavius Vespasianus (b. A.D. 9, d. A.D. 79, emperor A.D. 69-79) restored peace and stability to an empire in disarray following the death of Nero in A.D. 68. In the process he established the Flavian dynasty as the legitimate successor to the Imperial throne. Although we lack many details about the events and chronology of his reign, Vespasian provided practical leadership and a return to stable government - accomplishments which, when combined with his other achievements, make his emperorship particularly notable within the history of the Principate.

Early Life and Career

Vespasian was born at Falacrina near Sabine Reate on 17 November, A.D. 9, the son of T. Flavius Sabinus, a successful tax collector and banker, and Vespasia Polla. Both parents were of equestrian status. Few details of his first fifteen years survive, yet it appears that his father and mother were often away from home on business for long periods. As a result, Vespasian's early education became the responsibility of his paternal grandmother, Tertulla. [[1]] In about A.D. 25 Vespasian assumed the toga virilis and later accepted the wearing of the latus clavus, and with it the senatorial path that his older brother, T. Flavius Sabinus, had already chosen. [[2]] Although many of the particulars are lacking, the posts typically occupied by one intent upon a senatorial career soon followed: a military tribunate in Thrace, perhaps for three or four years; a quaestorship in Crete-Cyrene; and the offices of aedile and praetor, successively, under the emperor Gaius. [[3]]

It was during this period that Vespasian married Flavia Domitilla. Daughter of a treasury clerk and former mistress of an African knight, Flavia lacked the social standing and family connections that the politically ambitious usually sought through marriage. In any case, the couple produced three children, a daughter, also named Flavia Domitilla, and two sons, the future emperors Titus and Domitian . Flavia did not live to witness her husband's emperorship and after her death Vespasian returned to his former mistress Caenis, who had been secretary to Antonia (daughter of Marc Antony and mother of Claudius). Caenis apparently exerted considerable influence over Vespasian, prompting Suetonius to assert that she remained his wife in all but name, even after he became emperor. [[4]]

Following the assassination of Gaius on 24 January, A.D. 41, Vespasian advanced rapidly, thanks in large part to the new princeps Claudius, whose favor the Flavians had wisely secured with that of Antonia, the mother of Germanicus, and of Claudius' freedmen, especially Narcissus. [[5]] The emperor soon dispatched Vespasian to Argentoratum (Strasbourg) as legatus legionis II Augustae, apparently to prepare the legion for the invasion of Britain. Vespasian first appeared at the battle of Medway in A.D. 43, and soon thereafter led his legion across the south of England, where he engaged the enemy thirty times in battle, subdued two tribes, and conquered the Isle of Wight. According to Suetonius, these operations were conducted partly under Claudius and partly under Vespasian's commander, Aulus Plautius. Vespasian's contributions, however, did not go unnoticed; he received the ornamenta triumphalia and two priesthoods from Claudius for his exploits in Britain. [[6]]

By the end of A.D. 51 Vespasian had reached the consulship, the pinnacle of a political career at Rome. For reasons that remain obscure he withdrew from political life at this point, only to return when chosen proconsul of Africa about A.D. 63-64. His subsequent administration of the province was marked by severity and parsimony, earning him a reputation for being scrupulous but unpopular. [[7]] Upon completion of his term, Vespasian returned to Rome where, as a senior senator, he became a man of influence in the emperor Nero's court. [[8]] Important enough to be included on Nero's tour of Greece in A.D. 66-67, Vespasian soon found himself in the vicinity of increasing political turbulence in the East. The situation would prove pivotal in advancing his career.

Judaea and the Accession to Power

In response to rioting in Caesarea and Jerusalem that had led to the slaughter in the latter city of Jewish leaders and Roman soldiers, Nero granted to Vespasian in A.D. 66 a special command in the East with the objective of settling the revolt in Judaea. By spring A.D. 67, with 60,000 legionaries, auxiliaries, and allies under his control, Vespasian set out to subdue Galilee and then to cut off Jerusalem. Success was quick and decisive. By October all of Galilee had been pacified and plans for the strategic encirclement of Jerusalem were soon formed. [[9]] Meanwhile, at the other end of the empire, the revolts of Gaius Iulius Vindex, governor of Gallia Lugdunensis, and Servius Sulpicius Galba , governor of Hispania Tarraconensis, had brought Nero's reign to the brink of collapse. The emperor committed suicide in June, A.D. 68, thereby ensuring chaos for the next eighteen months, as first Galba and then Marcus Salvius Otho and Aulus Vitellius acceded to power. Each lacked broad-based military and senatorial support; each would be violently deposed in turn. [[10]]

Still occupied with plans against Jerusalem, Vespasian swore allegiance to each emperor. Shortly after Vitellius assumed power in spring, A.D. 69, however, Vespasian met on the border of Judaea and Syria with Gaius Licinius Mucianus, governor of Syria, and after a series of private and public consultations, the two decided to revolt. [[11]] On July 1, at the urging of Tiberius Alexander, prefect of Egypt, the legions of Alexandria declared for Vespasian, as did the legions of Judaea two days later. By August all of Syria and the Danube legions had done likewise. Vespasian next dispatched Mucianus to Italy with 20,000 troops, while he set out from Syria to Alexandria in order to control grain shipments for the purpose of starving Italy into submission. [[12]] The siege of Jerusalem he placed in the hands of his son Titus.

Meanwhile, the Danubian legions, unwilling to wait for Mucianus' arrival, began their march against Vitellius ' forces. The latter army, suffering from a lack of discipline and training, and unaccustomed to the heat of Rome, was defeated at Cremona in late October. [[13]] By mid-December the Flavian forces had reached Carsulae, 95 kilometers north of Rome on the Flaminian Road, where the Vitellians, with no further hope of reinforcements, soon surrendered. At Rome, unable to persuade his followers to accept terms for his abdication, Vitellius was in peril. On the morning of December 20 the Flavian army entered Rome. By that afternoon, the emperor was dead. [[14]]

Tacitus records that by December 22, A.D. 69, Vespasian had been given all the honors and privileges usually granted to emperors. Even so, the issue remains unclear, owing largely to a surviving fragment of an enabling law, the lex de imperio Vespasiani, which conferred powers, privileges, and exemptions, most with Julio-Claudian precedents, on the new emperor. Whether the fragment represents a typical granting of imperial powers that has uniquely survived in Vespasian's case, or is an attempt to limit or expand such powers, remains difficult to know. In any case, the lex sanctioned all that Vespasian had done up to its passing and gave him authority to act as he saw fit on behalf of the Roman people. [[15]]

What does seem clear is that Vespasian felt the need to legitimize his new reign with vigor. He zealously publicized the number of divine omens that predicted his accession and at every opportunity he accumulated multiple consulships and imperial salutations. He also actively promoted the principle of dynastic succession, insisting that the emperorship would fall to his son. The initiative was fulfilled when Titus succeeded his father in A.D. 79.[[16]]

Emperorship

Upon his arrival in Rome in late summer, A.D. 70, Vespasian faced the daunting task of restoring a city and a government ravaged by the recent civil wars. Although many particulars are missing, a portrait nevertheles emerges of a ruler conscientiously committed to the methodical renewal of both city and empire. Concerning Rome itself, the emperor encouraged rebuilding on vacated lots, restored the Capitol (burned in A.D. 69), and also began work on several new buildings: a temple to the deified Claudius on the Caelian Hill, a project designed to identify Vespasian as a legitimate heir to the Julio-Claudians, while distancing himself from Nero ; a temple of Peace near the Forum; and the magnificent Colosseum (Flavian Amphitheatre), located on the site of the lake of Nero 's Golden House. [[17]]

Claiming that he needed forty thousand million sesterces for these projects and for others aimed at putting the state on more secure footing, Vespasian is said to have revoked various imperial immunities, manipulated the supply of certain commodities to inflate their price, and increased provincial taxation. [[18]] The measures are consistent with his characterization in the sources as both obdurate and avaricious. There were occasional political problems as well: Helvidius Priscus, an advocate of senatorial independence and a critic of the Flavian regime from the start, was exiled after A.D. 75 and later executed; Marcellus Eprius and A. Alienus Caecina were condemned by Titus for conspiracy, the former committing suicide, the latter executed in A.D. 79.
As Suetonius claims, however, in financial matters Vespasian always put revenues to the best possible advantage, regardless of their source. Tacitus, too, offers a generally favorable assessment, citing Vespasian as the first man to improve after becoming emperor. [[19]] Thus do we find the princeps offering subventions to senators not possessing the property qualifications of their rank, restoring many cities throughout the empire, and granting state salaries for the first time to teachers of Latin and Greek rhetoric. To enhance Roman economic and social life even further, he encouraged theatrical productions by building a new stage for the Theatre of Marcellus, and he also put on lavish state dinners to assist the food trades. [[20]]

In other matters the emperor displayed similar concern. He restored the depleted ranks of the senatorial and equestrian orders with eligible Italian and provincial candidates and reduced the backlog of pending court cases at Rome. Vespasian also re-established discipline in the army, while punishing or dismissing large numbers of Vitellius ' men. [[21]]
Beyond Rome, the emperor increased the number of legions in the East and continued the process of imperial expansion by the annexation of northern England, the pacification of Wales, and by advances into Scotland and southwest Germany between the Rhine and the Danube. Vespasian also conferred rights on communities abroad, especially in Spain, where the granting of Latin rights to all native communities contributed to the rapid Romanization of that province during the Imperial period. [[22]]

Death and Assessment

In contrast to his immediate imperial predecessors, Vespasian died peacefully - at Aquae Cutiliae near his birthplace in Sabine country on 23 June, A.D. 79, after contracting a brief illness. The occasion is said to have inspired his deathbed quip: "Oh my, I must be turning into a god!" [[23]] In fact, public deification did follow his death, as did his internment in the Mausoleum of Augustus alongside the Julio-Claudians.

A man of strict military discipline and simple tastes, Vespasian proved to be a conscientious and generally tolerant administrator. More importantly, following the upheavals of A.D. 68-69, his reign was welcome for its general tranquility and restoration of peace. In Vespasian Rome found a leader who made no great breaks with tradition, yet his ability ro rebuild the empire and especially his willingness to expand the composition of the governing class helped to establish a positive working model for the "good emperors" of the second century.

Bibliography

Since the scholarship on Vespasian is more comprehensive than can be treated here, the works listed below are main accounts or bear directly upon issues discussed in the entry above. A comprehensive modern anglophone study of this emperor is yet to be produced.

Atti congresso internazionale di studi Flaviani, 2 vols. Rieti, 1983.

Atti congresso internazionale di studi Vespasianei, 2 vols. Rieti, 1981.

Bosworth, A.B. "Vespasian and the Provinces: Some Problems of the Early 70s A.D." Athenaeum 51 (1973): 49-78.

Brunt, P. A. "Lex de imperio Vespasiani." JRS (67) 1977: 95-116.

D'Espèrey, S. Franchet. "Vespasien, Titus et la littérature." ANRW II.32.5: 3048-3086.

Dudley, D. and Webster, G. The Roman Conquest of Britain. London, 1965.

Gonzalez, J. "The Lex Irnitana: A New Copy of the Flavian Municipal Law." JRS 76 (1986): 147-243.

Grant, M. The Roman Emperors: A Biographical Guide to the Rulers of Rome, 31 B.C. - A.D. 476. New York, 1985.

Homo, L. Vespasien, l'Empereur du bons sens (69-79 ap. J.-C.). Paris, 1949.

Levi, M.A. "I Flavi." ANRW II.2: 177-207.

McCrum, M. and Woodhead, A. G. Select Documents of the Principates of the Flavian Emperors Including the Year of the Revolution. Cambridge, 1966.

Nicols, John. Vespasian and the Partes Flavianae. Wiesbaden, 1978.

Scarre, C. Chronicle of the Roman Emperors. The Reign-by-Reign Record of the Rulers of Imperial Rome. London, 1995.

Suddington, D. B. The Development of the Roman Auxiliary Forces from Caesar to Vespasian, 49 B.C. - A.D. 79. Harare: U. of Zimbabwe, 1982.

Syme, R. Tacitus. Oxford, 1958.

Wardel, David. "Vespasian, Helvidius Priscus and the Restoration of the Capitol." Historia 45 (1996): 208-222.

Wellesley, K. The Long Year: A.D. 69. Bristol, 1989, 2nd ed.


Notes

[[1]] Suet. Vesp. 2.1. Suetonius remains the major source but see also Tac. Hist. 2-5; Cass. Dio 65; Joseph. BJ 3-4.

[[2]] Suetonius (Vesp. 2.1) claims that Vespasian did not accept the latus clavus, the broad striped toga worn by one aspiring to a senatorial career, immediately. The delay, however, was perhaps no more than three years. See J. Nicols, Vespasian and the Partes Flavianae (Wiesbaden, 1978), 2.

[[3]] Military tribunate and quaestorship: Suet. Vesp. 2.3; aedileship: ibid., 5.3, in which Gaius, furious that Vespasian had not kept the streets clean, as was his duty, ordered some soldiers to load him with filth;,they complied by stuffing his toga with as much as it could hold. See also Dio 59.12.2-3; praetorship: Suet. Vesp. 2.3, in which Vespasian is depicted as one of Gaius' leading adulators, an account consistent with Tacitus' portrayal (Hist 1.50.4; 2.5.1) of his early career. For a more complete discussion of these posts and attendant problems of dating, see Nicols, Vespasian, 2-7.

[[4]] Marriage and Caenis: Suet. Vesp. 3; Cass. Dio 65.14.

[[5]] Nicols, Vespasian, 12-39.

[[6]] Suet. Vesp. 4.1 For additional details on Vespasian's exploits in Britain, see D. Dudley and G. Webster, The Roman Conquest of Britain (London, 1965), 55 ff., 98.

[[7]] Concerning Vespasian's years between his consulship and proconsulship, see Suet. Vesp. 4.2 and Nicols, Vespasian, 9. On his unpopularity in Africa, see Suet. Vesp. 4.3, an account of a riot at Hadrumentum, where he was once pelted with turnips. In recording that Africa supported Vitellius in A.D. 69, Tacitus too suggests popular dissatisfaction with Vespasian's proconsulship. See Hist. 2.97.2.

[[8]] This despite the fact that the sources record two rebukes of Vespasian, one for extorting money from a young man seeking career advancement (Suet. Vesp. 4.3), the other for either leaving the room or dozing off during one of the emperor's recitals (Suet. Vesp. 4.4 and 14, which places the transgression in Greece; Tac. (Ann. 16.5.3), who makes Rome and the Quinquennial Games of A.D. 65 the setting; A. Braithwaite, C. Suetoni Tranquilli Divus Vespasianus, Oxford, 1927, 30, who argues for both Greece and Rome).

[[9]] Subjugation of Galilee: Joseph. BJ 3.65-4.106; siege of Jerusalem: ibid., 4.366-376, 414.

[[10]] Revolt of Vindex: Suet. Nero 40; Tac. Ann. 14.4; revolt of Galba: Suet. Galba 10; Plut. Galba, 4-5; suicide of Nero: Suet. Nero 49; Cass. Dio 63.29.2. For the most complete account of the period between Nero's death and the accession of Vespasian, see K. Wellesley, The Long Year: A.D. 69, 2nd. ed. (Bristol, 1989).

[[11]] Tac. Hist. 2.76.

[[12]] Troops in support of Vespasian: Suet. Vit. 15; Mucianus and his forces: Tac. Hist. 2.83; Vespasian and grain shipments: Joseph. BJ 4.605 ff.; see also Tac. Hist. 3.48, on Vespasian's possible plan to shut off grain shipments to Italy from Carthage as well.

[[13]] On Vitellius' army and its lack of discipline, see Tac. Hist. 2.93-94; illness of army: ibid., 2.99.1; Cremona: ibid., 3.32-33.

[[14]] On Vitellius' last days, see Tac. Hist. 3.68-81. On the complicated issue of Vitellius' death date, see L. Holzapfel, "Römische Kaiserdaten," Klio 13 (1913): 301.

[[15]] Honors, etc. Tac. Hist. 4.3. For more on the lex de imperio Vespasiani, see P. A. Brunt, "Lex de imperio Vespasiani," JRS (67) 1977: 95-116.

[[16]] Omens: Suet. Vesp. 5; consulships and honors: ibid., 8; succession of sons: ibid., 25.

[[17]] On Vespasian's restoration of Rome, see Suet. Vesp. 9; Cass. Dio 65.10; D. Wardel, "Vespasian, Helvidius Priscus and the Restoration of the Capitol," Historia 45 (1996): 208-222.

[[18]] Suet. Vesp. 16.

[[19]] Ibid.; Tac. Hist. 1.50.

[[20]] Suet. Vesp. 17-19.

[[21]] Ibid., 8-10.

[[22]] On Vespasian's exploits in Britain, see esp. Tac., Agricola, eds. R. M. Ogilvie and I. A. Richmond (1967), and W. S. Hanson, Agricola and the Conquest of the North (1987); on the granting of Latin rights in Spain, see, e.g., J. Gonzalez, "The Lex Irnitana: a New Copy of the Flavian Municipal Law." JRS 76 (1986): 147-243.

[[23]] For this witticism and other anecdotes concerning Vespasian's sense of humor, see Suet. Vesp. 23.

Copyright (C) 1998, John Donahue. Published on De Imperatoribus Romanis, an Online Encyplopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families.
http://www.roman-emperors.org/vespasia.htm
Used by permission.

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.
Cleisthenes
VesJudCapt.jpg
[18H759] Vespasian, 1 July 69 - 24 June 79 A.D., Judaea Capta171 viewsSilver denarius, Hendin 759, RIC 15, BM 35, RSC 226, S 2296, Fair, 2.344g, 17.0mm, 180o, Rome mint, 69-70 A.D.; obverse IMP CAESAR VESPASIANVS AVG, laureate head right; reverse IVDAEA in exergue, Jewess, mourning, seated at right of trophy.

De Imperatoribus Romanis:
An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families

Titus Flavius Vespasianus (A.D. 69-79)

John Donahue
College of William and Mary

Introduction

Titus Flavius Vespasianus (b. A.D. 9, d. A.D. 79, emperor A.D. 69-79) restored peace and stability to an empire in disarray following the death of Nero in A.D. 68. In the process he established the Flavian dynasty as the legitimate successor to the Imperial throne. Although we lack many details about the events and chronology of his reign, Vespasian provided practical leadership and a return to stable government - accomplishments which, when combined with his other achievements, make his emperorship particularly notable within the history of the Principate.

Early Life and Career

Vespasian was born at Falacrina near Sabine Reate on 17 November, A.D. 9, the son of T. Flavius Sabinus, a successful tax collector and banker, and Vespasia Polla. Both parents were of equestrian status. Few details of his first fifteen years survive, yet it appears that his father and mother were often away from home on business for long periods. As a result, Vespasian's early education became the responsibility of his paternal grandmother, Tertulla. [[1]] In about A.D. 25 Vespasian assumed the toga virilis and later accepted the wearing of the latus clavus, and with it the senatorial path that his older brother, T. Flavius Sabinus, had already chosen. [[2]] Although many of the particulars are lacking, the posts typically occupied by one intent upon a senatorial career soon followed: a military tribunate in Thrace, perhaps for three or four years; a quaestorship in Crete-Cyrene; and the offices of aedile and praetor, successively, under the emperor Gaius. [[3]]

It was during this period that Vespasian married Flavia Domitilla. Daughter of a treasury clerk and former mistress of an African knight, Flavia lacked the social standing and family connections that the politically ambitious usually sought through marriage. In any case, the couple produced three children, a daughter, also named Flavia Domitilla, and two sons, the future emperors Titus and Domitian . Flavia did not live to witness her husband's emperorship and after her death Vespasian returned to his former mistress Caenis, who had been secretary to Antonia (daughter of Marc Antony and mother of Claudius). Caenis apparently exerted considerable influence over Vespasian, prompting Suetonius to assert that she remained his wife in all but name, even after he became emperor. [[4]]

Following the assassination of Gaius on 24 January, A.D. 41, Vespasian advanced rapidly, thanks in large part to the new princeps Claudius, whose favor the Flavians had wisely secured with that of Antonia, the mother of Germanicus, and of Claudius' freedmen, especially Narcissus. [[5]] The emperor soon dispatched Vespasian to Argentoratum (Strasbourg) as legatus legionis II Augustae, apparently to prepare the legion for the invasion of Britain. Vespasian first appeared at the battle of Medway in A.D. 43, and soon thereafter led his legion across the south of England, where he engaged the enemy thirty times in battle, subdued two tribes, and conquered the Isle of Wight. According to Suetonius, these operations were conducted partly under Claudius and partly under Vespasian's commander, Aulus Plautius. Vespasian's contributions, however, did not go unnoticed; he received the ornamenta triumphalia and two priesthoods from Claudius for his exploits in Britain. [[6]]

By the end of A.D. 51 Vespasian had reached the consulship, the pinnacle of a political career at Rome. For reasons that remain obscure he withdrew from political life at this point, only to return when chosen proconsul of Africa about A.D. 63-64. His subsequent administration of the province was marked by severity and parsimony, earning him a reputation for being scrupulous but unpopular. [[7]] Upon completion of his term, Vespasian returned to Rome where, as a senior senator, he became a man of influence in the emperor Nero's court. [[8]] Important enough to be included on Nero's tour of Greece in A.D. 66-67, Vespasian soon found himself in the vicinity of increasing political turbulence in the East. The situation would prove pivotal in advancing his career.

Judaea and the Accession to Power

In response to rioting in Caesarea and Jerusalem that had led to the slaughter in the latter city of Jewish leaders and Roman soldiers, Nero granted to Vespasian in A.D. 66 a special command in the East with the objective of settling the revolt in Judaea. By spring A.D. 67, with 60,000 legionaries, auxiliaries, and allies under his control, Vespasian set out to subdue Galilee and then to cut off Jerusalem. Success was quick and decisive. By October all of Galilee had been pacified and plans for the strategic encirclement of Jerusalem were soon formed. [[9]] Meanwhile, at the other end of the empire, the revolts of Gaius Iulius Vindex, governor of Gallia Lugdunensis, and Servius Sulpicius Galba , governor of Hispania Tarraconensis, had brought Nero's reign to the brink of collapse. The emperor committed suicide in June, A.D. 68, thereby ensuring chaos for the next eighteen months, as first Galba and then Marcus Salvius Otho and Aulus Vitellius acceded to power. Each lacked broad-based military and senatorial support; each would be violently deposed in turn. [[10]]

Still occupied with plans against Jerusalem, Vespasian swore allegiance to each emperor. Shortly after Vitellius assumed power in spring, A.D. 69, however, Vespasian met on the border of Judaea and Syria with Gaius Licinius Mucianus, governor of Syria, and after a series of private and public consultations, the two decided to revolt. [[11]] On July 1, at the urging of Tiberius Alexander, prefect of Egypt, the legions of Alexandria declared for Vespasian, as did the legions of Judaea two days later. By August all of Syria and the Danube legions had done likewise. Vespasian next dispatched Mucianus to Italy with 20,000 troops, while he set out from Syria to Alexandria in order to control grain shipments for the purpose of starving Italy into submission. [[12]] The siege of Jerusalem he placed in the hands of his son Titus.

Meanwhile, the Danubian legions, unwilling to wait for Mucianus' arrival, began their march against Vitellius ' forces. The latter army, suffering from a lack of discipline and training, and unaccustomed to the heat of Rome, was defeated at Cremona in late October. [[13]] By mid-December the Flavian forces had reached Carsulae, 95 kilometers north of Rome on the Flaminian Road, where the Vitellians, with no further hope of reinforcements, soon surrendered. At Rome, unable to persuade his followers to accept terms for his abdication, Vitellius was in peril. On the morning of December 20 the Flavian army entered Rome. By that afternoon, the emperor was dead. [[14]]

Tacitus records that by December 22, A.D. 69, Vespasian had been given all the honors and privileges usually granted to emperors. Even so, the issue remains unclear, owing largely to a surviving fragment of an enabling law, the lex de imperio Vespasiani, which conferred powers, privileges, and exemptions, most with Julio-Claudian precedents, on the new emperor. Whether the fragment represents a typical granting of imperial powers that has uniquely survived in Vespasian's case, or is an attempt to limit or expand such powers, remains difficult to know. In any case, the lex sanctioned all that Vespasian had done up to its passing and gave him authority to act as he saw fit on behalf of the Roman people. [[15]]

What does seem clear is that Vespasian felt the need to legitimize his new reign with vigor. He zealously publicized the number of divine omens that predicted his accession and at every opportunity he accumulated multiple consulships and imperial salutations. He also actively promoted the principle of dynastic succession, insisting that the emperorship would fall to his son. The initiative was fulfilled when Titus succeeded his father in A.D. 79.[[16]]

Emperorship

Upon his arrival in Rome in late summer, A.D. 70, Vespasian faced the daunting task of restoring a city and a government ravaged by the recent civil wars. Although many particulars are missing, a portrait nevertheles emerges of a ruler conscientiously committed to the methodical renewal of both city and empire. Concerning Rome itself, the emperor encouraged rebuilding on vacated lots, restored the Capitol (burned in A.D. 69), and also began work on several new buildings: a temple to the deified Claudius on the Caelian Hill, a project designed to identify Vespasian as a legitimate heir to the Julio-Claudians, while distancing himself from Nero ; a temple of Peace near the Forum; and the magnificent Colosseum (Flavian Amphitheatre), located on the site of the lake of Nero 's Golden House. [[17]]

Claiming that he needed forty thousand million sesterces for these projects and for others aimed at putting the state on more secure footing, Vespasian is said to have revoked various imperial immunities, manipulated the supply of certain commodities to inflate their price, and increased provincial taxation. [[18]] The measures are consistent with his characterization in the sources as both obdurate and avaricious. There were occasional political problems as well: Helvidius Priscus, an advocate of senatorial independence and a critic of the Flavian regime from the start, was exiled after A.D. 75 and later executed; Marcellus Eprius and A. Alienus Caecina were condemned by Titus for conspiracy, the former committing suicide, the latter executed in A.D. 79.
As Suetonius claims, however, in financial matters Vespasian always put revenues to the best possible advantage, regardless of their source. Tacitus, too, offers a generally favorable assessment, citing Vespasian as the first man to improve after becoming emperor. [[19]] Thus do we find the princeps offering subventions to senators not possessing the property qualifications of their rank, restoring many cities throughout the empire, and granting state salaries for the first time to teachers of Latin and Greek rhetoric. To enhance Roman economic and social life even further, he encouraged theatrical productions by building a new stage for the Theatre of Marcellus, and he also put on lavish state dinners to assist the food trades. [[20]]

In other matters the emperor displayed similar concern. He restored the depleted ranks of the senatorial and equestrian orders with eligible Italian and provincial candidates and reduced the backlog of pending court cases at Rome. Vespasian also re-established discipline in the army, while punishing or dismissing large numbers of Vitellius ' men. [[21]]
Beyond Rome, the emperor increased the number of legions in the East and continued the process of imperial expansion by the annexation of northern England, the pacification of Wales, and by advances into Scotland and southwest Germany between the Rhine and the Danube. Vespasian also conferred rights on communities abroad, especially in Spain, where the granting of Latin rights to all native communities contributed to the rapid Romanization of that province during the Imperial period. [[22]]

Death and Assessment

In contrast to his immediate imperial predecessors, Vespasian died peacefully - at Aquae Cutiliae near his birthplace in Sabine country on 23 June, A.D. 79, after contracting a brief illness. The occasion is said to have inspired his deathbed quip: "Oh my, I must be turning into a god!" [[23]] In fact, public deification did follow his death, as did his internment in the Mausoleum of Augustus alongside the Julio-Claudians.

A man of strict military discipline and simple tastes, Vespasian proved to be a conscientious and generally tolerant administrator. More importantly, following the upheavals of A.D. 68-69, his reign was welcome for its general tranquility and restoration of peace. In Vespasian Rome found a leader who made no great breaks with tradition, yet his ability ro rebuild the empire and especially his willingness to expand the composition of the governing class helped to establish a positive working model for the "good emperors" of the second century.

Bibliography

Since the scholarship on Vespasian is more comprehensive than can be treated here, the works listed below are main accounts or bear directly upon issues discussed in the entry above. A comprehensive modern anglophone study of this emperor is yet to be produced.

Atti congresso internazionale di studi Flaviani, 2 vols. Rieti, 1983.

Atti congresso internazionale di studi Vespasianei, 2 vols. Rieti, 1981.

Bosworth, A.B. "Vespasian and the Provinces: Some Problems of the Early 70s A.D." Athenaeum 51 (1973): 49-78.

Brunt, P. A. "Lex de imperio Vespasiani." JRS (67) 1977: 95-116.

D'Espèrey, S. Franchet. "Vespasien, Titus et la littérature." ANRW II.32.5: 3048-3086.

Dudley, D. and Webster, G. The Roman Conquest of Britain. London, 1965.

Gonzalez, J. "The Lex Irnitana: A New Copy of the Flavian Municipal Law." JRS 76 (1986): 147-243.

Grant, M. The Roman Emperors: A Biographical Guide to the Rulers of Rome, 31 B.C. - A.D. 476. New York, 1985.

Homo, L. Vespasien, l'Empereur du bons sens (69-79 ap. J.-C.). Paris, 1949.

Levi, M.A. "I Flavi." ANRW II.2: 177-207.

McCrum, M. and Woodhead, A. G. Select Documents of the Principates of the Flavian Emperors Including the Year of the Revolution. Cambridge, 1966.

Nicols, John. Vespasian and the Partes Flavianae. Wiesbaden, 1978.

Scarre, C. Chronicle of the Roman Emperors. The Reign-by-Reign Record of the Rulers of Imperial Rome. London, 1995.

Suddington, D. B. The Development of the Roman Auxiliary Forces from Caesar to Vespasian, 49 B.C. - A.D. 79. Harare: U. of Zimbabwe, 1982.

Syme, R. Tacitus. Oxford, 1958.

Wardel, David. "Vespasian, Helvidius Priscus and the Restoration of the Capitol." Historia 45 (1996): 208-222.

Wellesley, K. The Long Year: A.D. 69. Bristol, 1989, 2nd ed.


Notes

[[1]] Suet. Vesp. 2.1. Suetonius remains the major source but see also Tac. Hist. 2-5; Cass. Dio 65; Joseph. BJ 3-4.

[[2]] Suetonius (Vesp. 2.1) claims that Vespasian did not accept the latus clavus, the broad striped toga worn by one aspiring to a senatorial career, immediately. The delay, however, was perhaps no more than three years. See J. Nicols, Vespasian and the Partes Flavianae (Wiesbaden, 1978), 2.

[[3]] Military tribunate and quaestorship: Suet. Vesp. 2.3; aedileship: ibid., 5.3, in which Gaius, furious that Vespasian had not kept the streets clean, as was his duty, ordered some soldiers to load him with filth;,they complied by stuffing his toga with as much as it could hold. See also Dio 59.12.2-3; praetorship: Suet. Vesp. 2.3, in which Vespasian is depicted as one of Gaius' leading adulators, an account consistent with Tacitus' portrayal (Hist 1.50.4; 2.5.1) of his early career. For a more complete discussion of these posts and attendant problems of dating, see Nicols, Vespasian, 2-7.

[[4]] Marriage and Caenis: Suet. Vesp. 3; Cass. Dio 65.14.

[[5]] Nicols, Vespasian, 12-39.

[[6]] Suet. Vesp. 4.1 For additional details on Vespasian's exploits in Britain, see D. Dudley and G. Webster, The Roman Conquest of Britain (London, 1965), 55 ff., 98.

[[7]] Concerning Vespasian's years between his consulship and proconsulship, see Suet. Vesp. 4.2 and Nicols, Vespasian, 9. On his unpopularity in Africa, see Suet. Vesp. 4.3, an account of a riot at Hadrumentum, where he was once pelted with turnips. In recording that Africa supported Vitellius in A.D. 69, Tacitus too suggests popular dissatisfaction with Vespasian's proconsulship. See Hist. 2.97.2.

[[8]] This despite the fact that the sources record two rebukes of Vespasian, one for extorting money from a young man seeking career advancement (Suet. Vesp. 4.3), the other for either leaving the room or dozing off during one of the emperor's recitals (Suet. Vesp. 4.4 and 14, which places the transgression in Greece; Tac. (Ann. 16.5.3), who makes Rome and the Quinquennial Games of A.D. 65 the setting; A. Braithwaite, C. Suetoni Tranquilli Divus Vespasianus, Oxford, 1927, 30, who argues for both Greece and Rome).

[[9]] Subjugation of Galilee: Joseph. BJ 3.65-4.106; siege of Jerusalem: ibid., 4.366-376, 414.

[[10]] Revolt of Vindex: Suet. Nero 40; Tac. Ann. 14.4; revolt of Galba: Suet. Galba 10; Plut. Galba, 4-5; suicide of Nero: Suet. Nero 49; Cass. Dio 63.29.2. For the most complete account of the period between Nero's death and the accession of Vespasian, see K. Wellesley, The Long Year: A.D. 69, 2nd. ed. (Bristol, 1989).

[[11]] Tac. Hist. 2.76.

[[12]] Troops in support of Vespasian: Suet. Vit. 15; Mucianus and his forces: Tac. Hist. 2.83; Vespasian and grain shipments: Joseph. BJ 4.605 ff.; see also Tac. Hist. 3.48, on Vespasian's possible plan to shut off grain shipments to Italy from Carthage as well.

[[13]] On Vitellius' army and its lack of discipline, see Tac. Hist. 2.93-94; illness of army: ibid., 2.99.1; Cremona: ibid., 3.32-33.

[[14]] On Vitellius' last days, see Tac. Hist. 3.68-81. On the complicated issue of Vitellius' death date, see L. Holzapfel, "Römische Kaiserdaten," Klio 13 (1913): 301.

[[15]] Honors, etc. Tac. Hist. 4.3. For more on the lex de imperio Vespasiani, see P. A. Brunt, "Lex de imperio Vespasiani," JRS (67) 1977: 95-116.

[[16]] Omens: Suet. Vesp. 5; consulships and honors: ibid., 8; succession of sons: ibid., 25.

[[17]] On Vespasian's restoration of Rome, see Suet. Vesp. 9; Cass. Dio 65.10; D. Wardel, "Vespasian, Helvidius Priscus and the Restoration of the Capitol," Historia 45 (1996): 208-222.

[[18]] Suet. Vesp. 16.

[[19]] Ibid.; Tac. Hist. 1.50.

[[20]] Suet. Vesp. 17-19.

[[21]] Ibid., 8-10.

[[22]] On Vespasian's exploits in Britain, see esp. Tac., Agricola, eds. R. M. Ogilvie and I. A. Richmond (1967), and W. S. Hanson, Agricola and the Conquest of the North (1987); on the granting of Latin rights in Spain, see, e.g., J. Gonzalez, "The Lex Irnitana: a New Copy of the Flavian Municipal Law." JRS 76 (1986): 147-243.

[[23]] For this witticism and other anecdotes concerning Vespasian's sense of humor, see Suet. Vesp. 23.

Copyright (C) 1998, John Donahue. Published on De Imperatoribus Romanis, an Online Encyplopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families.
http://www.roman-emperors.org/vespasia.htm
Used by permission.

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.
Cleisthenes
VespasianJudaeaCaptaHendin779.jpg
[18H779] Vespasian, 1 July 69 - 24 June 79 A.D., Judaea Capta issue125 viewsOrichalcum dupondius, Hendin 779, RIC II 1160, BMCRE 809 (same dies), aVF, Lugdunum mint, 9.969g, 27.7mm, 180o, 71 A.D.; obverse IMP CAESAR VESPASIAN AVG COS III, radiate head right, globe at point of bust; reverse VICTORIA NAVALIS S C, Victory standing right on a prow, wreath in right, palm frond over should in left (Refers to a victory on the Sea of Galilee during the recapture of Judaea); rough; rare (R2). Ex FORVM.




De Imperatoribus Romanis:
An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families

Titus Flavius Vespasianus (A.D. 69-79)

John Donahue
College of William and Mary

Introduction

Titus Flavius Vespasianus (b. A.D. 9, d. A.D. 79, emperor A.D. 69-79) restored peace and stability to an empire in disarray following the death of Nero in A.D. 68. In the process he established the Flavian dynasty as the legitimate successor to the Imperial throne. Although we lack many details about the events and chronology of his reign, Vespasian provided practical leadership and a return to stable government - accomplishments which, when combined with his other achievements, make his emperorship particularly notable within the history of the Principate.

Early Life and Career

Vespasian was born at Falacrina near Sabine Reate on 17 November, A.D. 9, the son of T. Flavius Sabinus, a successful tax collector and banker, and Vespasia Polla. Both parents were of equestrian status. Few details of his first fifteen years survive, yet it appears that his father and mother were often away from home on business for long periods. As a result, Vespasian's early education became the responsibility of his paternal grandmother, Tertulla. [[1]] In about A.D. 25 Vespasian assumed the toga virilis and later accepted the wearing of the latus clavus, and with it the senatorial path that his older brother, T. Flavius Sabinus, had already chosen. [[2]] Although many of the particulars are lacking, the posts typically occupied by one intent upon a senatorial career soon followed: a military tribunate in Thrace, perhaps for three or four years; a quaestorship in Crete-Cyrene; and the offices of aedile and praetor, successively, under the emperor Gaius. [[3]]

It was during this period that Vespasian married Flavia Domitilla. Daughter of a treasury clerk and former mistress of an African knight, Flavia lacked the social standing and family connections that the politically ambitious usually sought through marriage. In any case, the couple produced three children, a daughter, also named Flavia Domitilla, and two sons, the future emperors Titus and Domitian . Flavia did not live to witness her husband's emperorship and after her death Vespasian returned to his former mistress Caenis, who had been secretary to Antonia (daughter of Marc Antony and mother of Claudius). Caenis apparently exerted considerable influence over Vespasian, prompting Suetonius to assert that she remained his wife in all but name, even after he became emperor. [[4]]

Following the assassination of Gaius on 24 January, A.D. 41, Vespasian advanced rapidly, thanks in large part to the new princeps Claudius, whose favor the Flavians had wisely secured with that of Antonia, the mother of Germanicus, and of Claudius' freedmen, especially Narcissus. [[5]] The emperor soon dispatched Vespasian to Argentoratum (Strasbourg) as legatus legionis II Augustae, apparently to prepare the legion for the invasion of Britain. Vespasian first appeared at the battle of Medway in A.D. 43, and soon thereafter led his legion across the south of England, where he engaged the enemy thirty times in battle, subdued two tribes, and conquered the Isle of Wight. According to Suetonius, these operations were conducted partly under Claudius and partly under Vespasian's commander, Aulus Plautius. Vespasian's contributions, however, did not go unnoticed; he received the ornamenta triumphalia and two priesthoods from Claudius for his exploits in Britain. [[6]]

By the end of A.D. 51 Vespasian had reached the consulship, the pinnacle of a political career at Rome. For reasons that remain obscure he withdrew from political life at this point, only to return when chosen proconsul of Africa about A.D. 63-64. His subsequent administration of the province was marked by severity and parsimony, earning him a reputation for being scrupulous but unpopular. [[7]] Upon completion of his term, Vespasian returned to Rome where, as a senior senator, he became a man of influence in the emperor Nero's court. [[8]] Important enough to be included on Nero's tour of Greece in A.D. 66-67, Vespasian soon found himself in the vicinity of increasing political turbulence in the East. The situation would prove pivotal in advancing his career.

Judaea and the Accession to Power

In response to rioting in Caesarea and Jerusalem that had led to the slaughter in the latter city of Jewish leaders and Roman soldiers, Nero granted to Vespasian in A.D. 66 a special command in the East with the objective of settling the revolt in Judaea. By spring A.D. 67, with 60,000 legionaries, auxiliaries, and allies under his control, Vespasian set out to subdue Galilee and then to cut off Jerusalem. Success was quick and decisive. By October all of Galilee had been pacified and plans for the strategic encirclement of Jerusalem were soon formed. [[9]] Meanwhile, at the other end of the empire, the revolts of Gaius Iulius Vindex, governor of Gallia Lugdunensis, and Servius Sulpicius Galba , governor of Hispania Tarraconensis, had brought Nero's reign to the brink of collapse. The emperor committed suicide in June, A.D. 68, thereby ensuring chaos for the next eighteen months, as first Galba and then Marcus Salvius Otho and Aulus Vitellius acceded to power. Each lacked broad-based military and senatorial support; each would be violently deposed in turn. [[10]]

Still occupied with plans against Jerusalem, Vespasian swore allegiance to each emperor. Shortly after Vitellius assumed power in spring, A.D. 69, however, Vespasian met on the border of Judaea and Syria with Gaius Licinius Mucianus, governor of Syria, and after a series of private and public consultations, the two decided to revolt. [[11]] On July 1, at the urging of Tiberius Alexander, prefect of Egypt, the legions of Alexandria declared for Vespasian, as did the legions of Judaea two days later. By August all of Syria and the Danube legions had done likewise. Vespasian next dispatched Mucianus to Italy with 20,000 troops, while he set out from Syria to Alexandria in order to control grain shipments for the purpose of starving Italy into submission. [[12]] The siege of Jerusalem he placed in the hands of his son Titus.

Meanwhile, the Danubian legions, unwilling to wait for Mucianus' arrival, began their march against Vitellius ' forces. The latter army, suffering from a lack of discipline and training, and unaccustomed to the heat of Rome, was defeated at Cremona in late October. [[13]] By mid-December the Flavian forces had reached Carsulae, 95 kilometers north of Rome on the Flaminian Road, where the Vitellians, with no further hope of reinforcements, soon surrendered. At Rome, unable to persuade his followers to accept terms for his abdication, Vitellius was in peril. On the morning of December 20 the Flavian army entered Rome. By that afternoon, the emperor was dead. [[14]]

Tacitus records that by December 22, A.D. 69, Vespasian had been given all the honors and privileges usually granted to emperors. Even so, the issue remains unclear, owing largely to a surviving fragment of an enabling law, the lex de imperio Vespasiani, which conferred powers, privileges, and exemptions, most with Julio-Claudian precedents, on the new emperor. Whether the fragment represents a typical granting of imperial powers that has uniquely survived in Vespasian's case, or is an attempt to limit or expand such powers, remains difficult to know. In any case, the lex sanctioned all that Vespasian had done up to its passing and gave him authority to act as he saw fit on behalf of the Roman people. [[15]]

What does seem clear is that Vespasian felt the need to legitimize his new reign with vigor. He zealously publicized the number of divine omens that predicted his accession and at every opportunity he accumulated multiple consulships and imperial salutations. He also actively promoted the principle of dynastic succession, insisting that the emperorship would fall to his son. The initiative was fulfilled when Titus succeeded his father in A.D. 79.[[16]]

Emperorship

Upon his arrival in Rome in late summer, A.D. 70, Vespasian faced the daunting task of restoring a city and a government ravaged by the recent civil wars. Although many particulars are missing, a portrait nevertheles emerges of a ruler conscientiously committed to the methodical renewal of both city and empire. Concerning Rome itself, the emperor encouraged rebuilding on vacated lots, restored the Capitol (burned in A.D. 69), and also began work on several new buildings: a temple to the deified Claudius on the Caelian Hill, a project designed to identify Vespasian as a legitimate heir to the Julio-Claudians, while distancing himself from Nero ; a temple of Peace near the Forum; and the magnificent Colosseum (Flavian Amphitheatre), located on the site of the lake of Nero 's Golden House. [[17]]

Claiming that he needed forty thousand million sesterces for these projects and for others aimed at putting the state on more secure footing, Vespasian is said to have revoked various imperial immunities, manipulated the supply of certain commodities to inflate their price, and increased provincial taxation. [[18]] The measures are consistent with his characterization in the sources as both obdurate and avaricious. There were occasional political problems as well: Helvidius Priscus, an advocate of senatorial independence and a critic of the Flavian regime from the start, was exiled after A.D. 75 and later executed; Marcellus Eprius and A. Alienus Caecina were condemned by Titus for conspiracy, the former committing suicide, the latter executed in A.D. 79.
As Suetonius claims, however, in financial matters Vespasian always put revenues to the best possible advantage, regardless of their source. Tacitus, too, offers a generally favorable assessment, citing Vespasian as the first man to improve after becoming emperor. [[19]] Thus do we find the princeps offering subventions to senators not possessing the property qualifications of their rank, restoring many cities throughout the empire, and granting state salaries for the first time to teachers of Latin and Greek rhetoric. To enhance Roman economic and social life even further, he encouraged theatrical productions by building a new stage for the Theatre of Marcellus, and he also put on lavish state dinners to assist the food trades. [[20]]

In other matters the emperor displayed similar concern. He restored the depleted ranks of the senatorial and equestrian orders with eligible Italian and provincial candidates and reduced the backlog of pending court cases at Rome. Vespasian also re-established discipline in the army, while punishing or dismissing large numbers of Vitellius ' men. [[21]]
Beyond Rome, the emperor increased the number of legions in the East and continued the process of imperial expansion by the annexation of northern England, the pacification of Wales, and by advances into Scotland and southwest Germany between the Rhine and the Danube. Vespasian also conferred rights on communities abroad, especially in Spain, where the granting of Latin rights to all native communities contributed to the rapid Romanization of that province during the Imperial period. [[22]]

Death and Assessment

In contrast to his immediate imperial predecessors, Vespasian died peacefully - at Aquae Cutiliae near his birthplace in Sabine country on 23 June, A.D. 79, after contracting a brief illness. The occasion is said to have inspired his deathbed quip: "Oh my, I must be turning into a god!" [[23]] In fact, public deification did follow his death, as did his internment in the Mausoleum of Augustus alongside the Julio-Claudians.

A man of strict military discipline and simple tastes, Vespasian proved to be a conscientious and generally tolerant administrator. More importantly, following the upheavals of A.D. 68-69, his reign was welcome for its general tranquility and restoration of peace. In Vespasian Rome found a leader who made no great breaks with tradition, yet his ability ro rebuild the empire and especially his willingness to expand the composition of the governing class helped to establish a positive working model for the "good emperors" of the second century.

Bibliography

Since the scholarship on Vespasian is more comprehensive than can be treated here, the works listed below are main accounts or bear directly upon issues discussed in the entry above. A comprehensive modern anglophone study of this emperor is yet to be produced.

Atti congresso internazionale di studi Flaviani, 2 vols. Rieti, 1983.

Atti congresso internazionale di studi Vespasianei, 2 vols. Rieti, 1981.

Bosworth, A.B. "Vespasian and the Provinces: Some Problems of the Early 70s A.D." Athenaeum 51 (1973): 49-78.

Brunt, P. A. "Lex de imperio Vespasiani." JRS (67) 1977: 95-116.

D'Espèrey, S. Franchet. "Vespasien, Titus et la littérature." ANRW II.32.5: 3048-3086.

Dudley, D. and Webster, G. The Roman Conquest of Britain. London, 1965.

Gonzalez, J. "The Lex Irnitana: A New Copy of the Flavian Municipal Law." JRS 76 (1986): 147-243.

Grant, M. The Roman Emperors: A Biographical Guide to the Rulers of Rome, 31 B.C. - A.D. 476. New York, 1985.

Homo, L. Vespasien, l'Empereur du bons sens (69-79 ap. J.-C.). Paris, 1949.

Levi, M.A. "I Flavi." ANRW II.2: 177-207.

McCrum, M. and Woodhead, A. G. Select Documents of the Principates of the Flavian Emperors Including the Year of the Revolution. Cambridge, 1966.

Nicols, John. Vespasian and the Partes Flavianae. Wiesbaden, 1978.

Scarre, C. Chronicle of the Roman Emperors. The Reign-by-Reign Record of the Rulers of Imperial Rome. London, 1995.

Suddington, D. B. The Development of the Roman Auxiliary Forces from Caesar to Vespasian, 49 B.C. - A.D. 79. Harare: U. of Zimbabwe, 1982.

Syme, R. Tacitus. Oxford, 1958.

Wardel, David. "Vespasian, Helvidius Priscus and the Restoration of the Capitol." Historia 45 (1996): 208-222.

Wellesley, K. The Long Year: A.D. 69. Bristol, 1989, 2nd ed.


Notes

[[1]] Suet. Vesp. 2.1. Suetonius remains the major source but see also Tac. Hist. 2-5; Cass. Dio 65; Joseph. BJ 3-4.

[[2]] Suetonius (Vesp. 2.1) claims that Vespasian did not accept the latus clavus, the broad striped toga worn by one aspiring to a senatorial career, immediately. The delay, however, was perhaps no more than three years. See J. Nicols, Vespasian and the Partes Flavianae (Wiesbaden, 1978), 2.

[[3]] Military tribunate and quaestorship: Suet. Vesp. 2.3; aedileship: ibid., 5.3, in which Gaius, furious that Vespasian had not kept the streets clean, as was his duty, ordered some soldiers to load him with filth;,they complied by stuffing his toga with as much as it could hold. See also Dio 59.12.2-3; praetorship: Suet. Vesp. 2.3, in which Vespasian is depicted as one of Gaius' leading adulators, an account consistent with Tacitus' portrayal (Hist 1.50.4; 2.5.1) of his early career. For a more complete discussion of these posts and attendant problems of dating, see Nicols, Vespasian, 2-7.

[[4]] Marriage and Caenis: Suet. Vesp. 3; Cass. Dio 65.14.

[[5]] Nicols, Vespasian, 12-39.

[[6]] Suet. Vesp. 4.1 For additional details on Vespasian's exploits in Britain, see D. Dudley and G. Webster, The Roman Conquest of Britain (London, 1965), 55 ff., 98.

[[7]] Concerning Vespasian's years between his consulship and proconsulship, see Suet. Vesp. 4.2 and Nicols, Vespasian, 9. On his unpopularity in Africa, see Suet. Vesp. 4.3, an account of a riot at Hadrumentum, where he was once pelted with turnips. In recording that Africa supported Vitellius in A.D. 69, Tacitus too suggests popular dissatisfaction with Vespasian's proconsulship. See Hist. 2.97.2.

[[8]] This despite the fact that the sources record two rebukes of Vespasian, one for extorting money from a young man seeking career advancement (Suet. Vesp. 4.3), the other for either leaving the room or dozing off during one of the emperor's recitals (Suet. Vesp. 4.4 and 14, which places the transgression in Greece; Tac. (Ann. 16.5.3), who makes Rome and the Quinquennial Games of A.D. 65 the setting; A. Braithwaite, C. Suetoni Tranquilli Divus Vespasianus, Oxford, 1927, 30, who argues for both Greece and Rome).

[[9]] Subjugation of Galilee: Joseph. BJ 3.65-4.106; siege of Jerusalem: ibid., 4.366-376, 414.

[[10]] Revolt of Vindex: Suet. Nero 40; Tac. Ann. 14.4; revolt of Galba: Suet. Galba 10; Plut. Galba, 4-5; suicide of Nero: Suet. Nero 49; Cass. Dio 63.29.2. For the most complete account of the period between Nero's death and the accession of Vespasian, see K. Wellesley, The Long Year: A.D. 69, 2nd. ed. (Bristol, 1989).

[[11]] Tac. Hist. 2.76.

[[12]] Troops in support of Vespasian: Suet. Vit. 15; Mucianus and his forces: Tac. Hist. 2.83; Vespasian and grain shipments: Joseph. BJ 4.605 ff.; see also Tac. Hist. 3.48, on Vespasian's possible plan to shut off grain shipments to Italy from Carthage as well.

[[13]] On Vitellius' army and its lack of discipline, see Tac. Hist. 2.93-94; illness of army: ibid., 2.99.1; Cremona: ibid., 3.32-33.

[[14]] On Vitellius' last days, see Tac. Hist. 3.68-81. On the complicated issue of Vitellius' death date, see L. Holzapfel, "Römische Kaiserdaten," Klio 13 (1913): 301.

[[15]] Honors, etc. Tac. Hist. 4.3. For more on the lex de imperio Vespasiani, see P. A. Brunt, "Lex de imperio Vespasiani," JRS (67) 1977: 95-116.

[[16]] Omens: Suet. Vesp. 5; consulships and honors: ibid., 8; succession of sons: ibid., 25.

[[17]] On Vespasian's restoration of Rome, see Suet. Vesp. 9; Cass. Dio 65.10; D. Wardel, "Vespasian, Helvidius Priscus and the Restoration of the Capitol," Historia 45 (1996): 208-222.

[[18]] Suet. Vesp. 16.

[[19]] Ibid.; Tac. Hist. 1.50.

[[20]] Suet. Vesp. 17-19.

[[21]] Ibid., 8-10.

[[22]] On Vespasian's exploits in Britain, see esp. Tac., Agricola, eds. R. M. Ogilvie and I. A. Richmond (1967), and W. S. Hanson, Agricola and the Conquest of the North (1987); on the granting of Latin rights in Spain, see, e.g., J. Gonzalez, "The Lex Irnitana: a New Copy of the Flavian Municipal Law." JRS 76 (1986): 147-243.

[[23]] For this witticism and other anecdotes concerning Vespasian's sense of humor, see Suet. Vesp. 23.

Copyright (C) 1998, John Donahue. Published on De Imperatoribus Romanis, an Online Encyplopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families.
http://www.roman-emperors.org/vespasia.htm
Used by permission.

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.
1 commentsCleisthenes
TrajSepphorisGalilee.jpg
[18H907] Trajan, 25 January 98 - 8 or 9 August 117 A.D., Sepphoris, Galilee212 viewsBronze AE 23, Hendin 907, BMC 5, Fair, 7.41g, 23.1mm, 0o, Sepphoris mint, 98 - 117 A.D.; obverse TPAIANOS AYTO]-KPA[TWP EDWKEN, laureate head right; reverse SEPFW/RHNWN, eight-branched palm bearing two bunches of dates.

At the crossroads of the Via Maris and the Acre-Tiberias roads, Sepphoris was the capital of Galilee and Herod Antipas' first capital. Damaged by a riot, Antipas ordered Sepphoris be rebuilt. Flavius Josephus described the rebuilt Sepphoris as the "ornament of all Galilee." Since Sepphoris was only five miles north of Nazareth, Jesus and Joseph may have found work in Antipas' rebuilding projects. Sepphoris was built on a hill and visible for miles. This may be the city that Jesus spoke of when He said, "A city set on a hill cannot be hidden."

Marcus Ulpius Traianus, a brilliant general and administrator was adopted and proclaimed emperor by the aging Nerva in 98 A.D. Regarded as one of Rome's greatest emperors, Trajan was responsible for the annexation of Dacia, the invasion of Arabia and an extensive and lavish building program across the empire. Under Trajan, Rome reached its greatest extent. Shortly after the annexation of Mesopotamia and Armenia, Trajan was forced to withdraw from most of the new Arabian provinces. While returning to Rome to direct operations against the new threats, Trajan died at Selinus in Cilicia.
See: http://www.forumancientcoins.com/catalog/indexfrm.asp?vpar=55&pos=0.


De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families

Trajan (A.D. 98-117)

Herbert W. Benario
Emory University

Introduction and Sources
"During a happy period of more than fourscore years, the public administration was conducted by the virtue and abilities of Nerva, Trajan, Hadrian, and the two Antonines. It is the design of this and of the two succeeding chapters to describe the prosperous condition of their empire, and afterwards, from the death of Marcus Antoninus, to deduce the most important circumstances of its decline and fall, a revolution which will ever be remembered and is still felt by the nations of the earth."

This is perhaps the most important and best known of all Edward Gibbon's famous dicta about his vast subject, and particularly that period which he admired the most. It was a concatenation of chance and events which brought to the first position of the principate five men, each very different from the others, who each, in his own way, brought integrity and a sense of public duty to his tasks. Nerva's tenure was brief, as many no doubt had expected and hoped it would be, and perhaps his greatest achievement was to choose Trajan as his adoptive son and intended successor. It was a splendid choice. Trajan was one of Rome's most admirable figures, a man who merited the renown which he enjoyed in his lifetime and in subsequent generations.

The sources for the man and his principate are disappointingly skimpy. There is no contemporaneous historian who can illuminate the period. Tacitus speaks only occasionally of Trajan, there is no biography by Suetonius, nor even one by the author of the late and largely fraudulent Historia Augusta. (However, a modern version of what such a life might have been like has been composed by A. Birley, entirely based upon ancient evidence. It is very useful.) Pliny the Younger tells us the most, in his Panegyricus, his long address of thanks to the emperor upon assuming the consulship in late 100, and in his letters. Pliny was a wordy and congenial man, who reveals a great deal about his senatorial peers and their relations with the emperor, above all, of course, his own. The most important part is the tenth book of his Epistulae, which contains the correspondence between him, while serving in Bithynia, and the emperor, to whom he referred all manner of problems, important as well as trivial. Best known are the pair (96,97) dealing with the Christians and what was to be done with them. These would be extraordinarily valuable if we could be sure that the imperial replies stemmed directly from Trajan, but that is more than one can claim. The imperial chancellery had developed greatly in previous decades and might pen these communications after only the most general directions from the emperor. The letters are nonetheless unique in the insight they offer into the emperor's mind.

Cassius Dio, who wrote in the decade of the 230s, wrote a long imperial history which has survived only in abbreviated form in book LXVIII for the Trajanic period. The rhetorician Dio of Prusa, a contemporary of the emperor, offers little of value. Fourth-century epitomators, Aurelius Victor and Eutropius, offer some useful material. Inscriptions, coins, papyri, and legal texts are of major importance. Since Trajan was a builder of many significant projects, archaeology contributes mightily to our understanding of the man.

Early Life and Career
The patria of the Ulpii was Italica, in Spanish Baetica , where their ancestors had settled late in the third century B.C. This indicates that the Italian origin was paramount, yet it has recently been cogently argued that the family's ancestry was local, with Trajan senior actually a Traius who was adopted into the family of the Ulpii. Trajan's father was the first member of the family to pursue a senatorial career; it proved to be a very successful one. Born probably about the year 30, he perhaps commanded a legion under Corbulo in the early sixties and then was legate of legio X Fretensis under Vespasian, governor of Judaea. Success in the Jewish War was rewarded by the governorship of an unknown province and then a consulate in 70. He was thereafter adlected by the emperor in patricios and sent to govern Baetica. Then followed the governorship of one of the major military provinces, Syria, where he prevented a Parthian threat of invasion, and in 79/80 he was proconsul of Asia, one of the two provinces (the other was Africa) which capped a senatorial career. His public service now effectively over, he lived on in honor and distinction, in all likelihood seeing his son emperor. He probably died before 100. He was deified in 113 and his titulature read divus Traianus pater. Since his son was also the adoptive son of Nerva, the emperor had officially two fathers, a unique circumstance.

The son was born in Italica on September 18, 53; his mother was Marcia, who had given birth to a daughter, Ulpia Marciana, five years before the birth of the son. In the mid seventies, he was a legionary legate under his father in Syria. He then married a lady from Nemausus (Nimes) in Gallia Narbonensis, Pompeia Plotina, was quaestor about 78 and praetor about 84. In 86, he became one of the child Hadrian's guardians. He was then appointed legate of legio VII Gemina in Hispania Tarraconensis, from which he marched at Domitian's orders in 89 to crush the uprising of Antonius Saturninus along the Rhine. He next fought in Domitian's war against the Germans along Rhine and Danube and was rewarded with an ordinary consulship in 91. Soon followed the governorship of Moesia inferior and then that of Germania superior, with his headquarters at Moguntiacum (Mainz), whither Hadrian brought him the news in autumn 97 that he had been adopted by the emperor Nerva, as co-ruler and intended successor. Already recipient of the title imperator and possessor of the tribunician power, when Nerva died on January 27, 98, Trajan became emperor in a smooth transition of power which marked the next three quarters of a century.

Early Years through the Dacian Wars
Trajan did not return immediately to Rome. He chose to stay in his German province and settle affairs on that frontier. He showed that he approved Domitian's arrangements, with the establishment of two provinces, their large military garrisons, and the beginnings of the limes. Those who might have wished for a renewed war of conquest against the Germans were disappointed. The historian Tacitus may well have been one of these.

Trajan then visited the crucial Danube provinces of Pannonia and Moesia, where the Dacian king Decebalus had caused much difficulty for the Romans and had inflicted a heavy defeat upon a Roman army about a decade before. Domitian had established a modus vivendi with Decebalus, essentially buying his good behavior, but the latter had then continued his activities hostile to Rome. Trajan clearly thought that this corner of empire would require his personal attention and a lasting and satisfactory solution.

Trajan spent the year 100 in Rome, seeing to the honors and deification of his predecessor, establishing good and sensitive relations with the senate, in sharp contrast with Domitian's "war against the senate." Yet his policies essentially continued Domitian's; he was no less master of the state and the ultimate authority over individuals, but his good nature and respect for those who had until recently been his peers if not his superiors won him great favor. He was called optimus by the people and that word began to appear among his titulature, although it had not been decreed by the senate. Yet his thoughts were ever on the Danube. Preparations for a great campaign were under way, particularly with transfers of legions and their attendant auxiliaries from Germany and Britain and other provinces and the establishment of two new ones, II Traiana and XXX Ulpia, which brought the total muster to 30, the highest number yet reached in the empire's history.

In 101 the emperor took the field. The war was one which required all his military abilities and all the engineering and discipline for which the Roman army was renowned. Trajan was fortunate to have Apollodorus of Damascus in his service, who built a roadway through the Iron Gates by cantilevering it from the sheer face of the rock so that the army seemingly marched on water. He was also to build a great bridge across the Danube, with 60 stone piers (traces of this bridge still survive). When Trajan was ready to move he moved with great speed, probably driving into the heart of Dacian territory with two columns, until, in 102, Decebalus chose to capitulate. He prostrated himself before Trajan and swore obedience; he was to become a client king. Trajan returned to Rome and added the title Dacicus to his titulature.

Decebalus, however, once left to his own devices, undertook to challenge Rome again, by raids across the Danube into Roman territory and by attempting to stir up some of the tribes north of the river against her. Trajan took the field again in 106, intending this time to finish the job of Decebalus' subjugation. It was a brutal struggle, with some of the characteristics of a war of extirpation, until the Dacian king, driven from his capital of Sarmizegethusa and hunted like an animal, chose to commit suicide rather than to be paraded in a Roman triumph and then be put to death.

The war was over. It had taxed Roman resources, with 11 legions involved, but the rewards were great. Trajan celebrated a great triumph, which lasted 123 days and entertained the populace with a vast display of gladiators and animals. The land was established as a province, the first on the north side of the Danube. Much of the native population which had survived warfare was killed or enslaved, their place taken by immigrants from other parts of the empire. The vast wealth of Dacian mines came to Rome as war booty, enabling Trajan to support an extensive building program almost everywhere, but above all in Italy and in Rome. In the capital, Apollodorus designed and built in the huge forum already under construction a sculpted column, precisely 100 Roman feet high, with 23 spiral bands filled with 2500 figures, which depicted, like a scroll being unwound, the history of both Dacian wars. It was, and still is, one of the great achievements of imperial "propaganda." In southern Dacia, at Adamklissi, a large tropaeum was built on a hill, visible from a great distance, as a tangible statement of Rome's domination. Its effect was similar to that of Augustus' monument at La Turbie above Monaco; both were constant reminders for the inhabitants who gazed at it that they had once been free and were now subjects of a greater power.

Administration and Social Policy
The chief feature of Trajan's administration was his good relations with the senate, which allowed him to accomplish whatever he wished without general opposition. His auctoritas was more important than his imperium. At the very beginning of Trajan's reign, the historian Tacitus, in the biography of his father-in-law Agricola, spoke of the newly won compatibility of one-man rule and individual liberty established by Nerva and expanded by Trajan (Agr. 3.1, primo statim beatissimi saeculi ortu Nerva Caesar res olim dissociabiles miscuerit, principatum ac libertatem, augeatque cotidie felicitatem temporum Nerva Traianus,….) [13] At the end of the work, Tacitus comments, when speaking of Agricola's death, that he had forecast the principate of Trajan but had died too soon to see it (Agr. 44.5, ei non licuit durare in hanc beatissimi saeculi lucem ac principem Traianum videre, quod augurio votisque apud nostras aures ominabatur,….) Whether one believes that principate and liberty had truly been made compatible or not, this evidently was the belief of the aristocracy of Rome. Trajan, by character and actions, contributed to this belief, and he undertook to reward his associates with high office and significant promotions. During his principate, he himself held only 6 consulates, while arranging for third consulates for several of his friends. Vespasian had been consul 9 times, Titus 8, Domitian 17! In the history of the empire there were only 12 or 13 private who reached the eminence of third consulates. Agrippa had been the first, L. Vitellius the second. Under Trajan there were 3: Sex. Iulius Frontinus (100), T. Vestricius Spurinna (100), and L. Licinius Sura (107). There were also 10 who held second consulships: L. Iulius Ursus Servianus (102), M.' Laberius Maximus (103), Q. Glitius Atilius Agricola (103), P. Metilius Sabinus Nepos (103?), Sex. Attius Suburanus Aemilianus (104), Ti. Iulius Candidus Marius Celsus (105), C. Antius A. Iulius Quadratus (105), Q. Sosius Senecio (107), A. Cornelius Palma Frontonianus (109), and L. Publilius Celsus (113). These men were essentially his close associates from pre-imperial days and his prime military commanders in the Dacian wars.

One major administrative innovation can be credited to Trajan. This was the introduction of curators who, as representatives of the central government, assumed financial control of local communities, both in Italy and the provinces. Pliny in Bithynia is the best known of these imperial officials. The inexorable shift from freedmen to equestrians in the imperial ministries continued, to culminate under Hadrian, and he devoted much attention and considerable state resources to the expansion of the alimentary system, which purposed to support orphans throughout Italy. The splendid arch at Beneventum represents Trajan as a civilian emperor, with scenes of ordinary life and numerous children depicted, which underscored the prosperity of Italy.

The satirist Juvenal, a contemporary of the emperor, in one of his best known judgments, laments that the citizen of Rome, once master of the world, is now content only with "bread and circuses."

Nam qui dabat olim / imperium, fasces, legiones, omnia, nunc se / continet, atque duas tantum res anxius optat, / panem et circenses. (X 78-81)

Trajan certainly took advantage of that mood, indeed exacerbated it, by improving the reliabilty of the grain supply (the harbor at Ostia and the distribution system as exemplified in the Mercati in Rome). Fronto did not entirely approve, if indeed he approved at all. The plebs esteemed the emperor for the glory he had brought Rome, for the great wealth he had won which he turned to public uses, and for his personality and manner. Though emperor, he prided himself upon being civilis, a term which indicated comportment suitable for a Roman citizen.

There was only one major addition to the Rome's empire other than Dacia in the first decade and a half of Trajan's reign. This was the province of Arabia, which followed upon the absorption of the Nabataean kingdom (105-106).

Building Projects
Trajan had significant effect upon the infrastructure of both Rome and Italy. His greatest monument in the city, if the single word "monument" can effectively describe the complex, was the forum which bore his name, much the largest, and the last, of the series known as the "imperial fora." Excavation for a new forum had already begun under Domitian, but it was Apollodorus who designed and built the whole. Enormous in its extent, the Basilica Ulpia was the centerpiece, the largest wood roofed building in the Roman world. In the open courtyard before it was an equestrian statue of Trajan, behind it was the column; there were libraries, one for Latin scrolls, the other for Greek, on each side. A significant omission was a temple; this circumstance was later rectified by Hadrian, who built a large temple to the deified Trajan and Plotina.

The column was both a history in stone and the intended mausoleum for the emperor, whose ashes were indeed placed in the column base. An inscription over the doorway, somewhat cryptic because part of the text has disappeared, reads as follows:

Senatus populusque Romanus imp. Caesari divi Nervae f. Nervae Traiano Aug. Germ. Dacico pontif. Maximo trib. pot. XVII imp. VI p.p. ad declarandum quantae altitudinis mons et locus tant[is oper]ibus sit egestus (Smallwood 378)

On the north side of the forum, built into the slopes of the Quirinal hill, were the Markets of Trajan, which served as a shopping mall and the headquarters of the annona, the agency responsible for the receipt and distribution of grain.

On the Esquiline hill was constructed the first of the huge imperial baths, using a large part of Nero's Domus Aurea as its foundations. On the other side of the river a new aqueduct was constructed, which drew its water from Lake Bracciano and ran some 60 kilometers to the heights of the Janiculum Hill. It was dedicated in 109. A section of its channel survives in the basement of the American Academy in Rome.

The arch in Beneventum is the most significant monument elsewhere in Italy. It was dedicated in 114, to mark the beginning of the new Via Traiana, which offered an easier route to Brundisium than that of the ancient Via Appia.

Trajan devoted much attention to the construction and improvement of harbors. His new hexagonal harbor at Ostia at last made that port the most significant in Italy, supplanting Puteoli, so that henceforth the grain ships docked there and their cargo was shipped by barge up the Tiber to Rome. Terracina benefited as well from harbor improvements, and the Via Appia now ran directly through the city along a new route, with some 130 Roman feet of sheer cliff being cut away so that the highway could bend along the coast. Ancona on the Adriatic Sea became the major harbor on that coast for central Italy in 114-115, and Trajan's activity was commemorated by an arch. The inscription reports that the senate and people dedicated it to the []iprovidentissimo principi quod accessum Italiae hoc etiam addito ex pecunia sua portu tutiorem navigantibus reddiderit (Smallwood 387). Centumcellae, the modern Civitavecchia, also profited from a new harbor. The emperor enjoyed staying there, and on at least one occasion summoned his consilium there.

Elsewhere in the empire the great bridge at Alcantara in Spain, spanning the Tagus River, still in use, testifies to the significant attention the emperor gave to the improvement of communication throughout his entire domain.

Family Relations; the Women
After the death of his father, Trajan had no close male relatives. His life was as closely linked with his wife and female relations as that of any of his predecessors; these women played enormously important roles in the empire's public life, and received honors perhaps unparalleled. His wife, Pompeia Plotina, is reported to have said, when she entered the imperial palace in Rome for the first time, that she hoped she would leave it the same person she was when she entered. She received the title Augusta no later than 105. She survived Trajan, dying probably in 121, and was honored by Hadrian with a temple, which she shared with her husband, in the great forum which the latter had built.

His sister Marciana, five years his elder, and he shared a close affection. She received the title Augusta, along with Plotina, in 105 and was deified in 112 upon her death. Her daughter Matidia became Augusta upon her mother's death, and in her turn was deified in 119. Both women received substantial monuments in the Campus Martius, there being basilicas of each and a temple of divae Matidiae. Hadrian was responsible for these buildings, which were located near the later temple of the deified Hadrian, not far from the column of Marcus Aurelius.

Matidia's daughter, Sabina, was married to Hadrian in the year 100. The union survived almost to the end of Hadrian's subsequent principate, in spite of the mutual loathing that they had for each other. Sabina was Trajan's great niece, and thereby furnished Hadrian a crucial link to Trajan.

The women played public roles as significant as any of their predecessors. They traveled with the emperor on public business and were involved in major decisions. They were honored throughout the empire, on monuments as well as in inscriptions. Plotina, Marciana, and Matidia, for example, were all honored on the arch at Ancona along with Trajan.

The Parthian War
In 113, Trajan began preparations for a decisive war against Parthia. He had been a "civilian" emperor for seven years, since his victory over the Dacians, and may well have yearned for a last, great military achievement, which would rival that of Alexander the Great. Yet there was a significant cause for war in the Realpolitik of Roman-Parthian relations, since the Parthians had placed a candidate of their choice upon the throne of Armenia without consultation and approval of Rome. When Trajan departed Rome for Antioch, in a leisurely tour of the eastern empire while his army was being mustered, he probably intended to destroy at last Parthia's capabilities to rival Rome's power and to reduce her to the status of a province (or provinces). It was a great enterprise, marked by initial success but ultimate disappointment and failure.

In 114 he attacked the enemy through Armenia and then, over three more years, turned east and south, passing through Mesopotamia and taking Babylon and the capital of Ctesiphon. He then is said to have reached the Persian Gulf and to have lamented that he was too old to go further in Alexander's footsteps. In early 116 he received the title Parthicus.

The territories, however, which had been handily won, were much more difficult to hold. Uprisings among the conquered peoples, and particularly among the Jews in Palestine and the Diaspora, caused him to gradually resign Roman rule over these newly-established provinces as he returned westward. The revolts were brutally suppressed. In mid 117, Trajan, now a sick man, was slowly returning to Italy, having left Hadrian in command in the east, when he died in Selinus of Cilicia on August 9, having designated Hadrian as his successor while on his death bed. Rumor had it that Plotina and Matidia were responsible for the choice, made when the emperor was already dead. Be that as it may, there was no realistic rival to Hadrian, linked by blood and marriage to Trajan and now in command of the empire's largest military forces. Hadrian received notification of his designation on August 11, and that day marked his dies imperii. Among Hadrian's first acts was to give up all of Trajan's eastern conquests.

Trajan's honors and reputation
Hadrian saw to it that Trajan received all customary honors: the late emperor was declared a divus, his victories were commemorated in a great triumph, and his ashes were placed in the base of his column. Trajan's reputation remained unimpaired, in spite of the ultimate failure of his last campaigns. Early in his principate, he had unofficially been honored with the title optimus, "the best," which long described him even before it became, in 114, part of his official titulature. His correspondence with Pliny enables posterity to gain an intimate sense of the emperor in action. His concern for justice and the well-being of his subjects is underscored by his comment to Pliny, when faced with the question of the Christians, that they were not to be sought out, "nor is it appropriate to our age." At the onset of his principate, Tacitus called Trajan's accession the beginning of a beatissimum saeculum, and so it remained in the public mind. Admired by the people, respected by the senatorial aristocracy, he faced no internal difficulties, with no rival nor opposition. His powers were as extensive as Domitian's had been, but his use and display of these powers were very different from those of his predecessor, who had claimed to be deus et dominus. Not claiming to be a god, he was recognized in the official iconography of sculpture as Jupiter's viceregent on earth, so depicted on the attic reliefs of the Beneventan arch. The passage of time increased Trajan's aura rather than diminished it. In the late fourth century, when the Roman Empire had dramatically changed in character from what it had been in Trajan's time, each new emperor was hailed with the prayer, felicior Augusto, melior Traiano, "may he be luckier than Augustus and better than Trajan." That reputation has essentially survived into the present day.

Copyright (C) 2000, Herbert W. Benario.
Published: De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families http://www.roman-emperors.org/startup.htm. Used by permission.

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.

Cleisthenes
TrajanDupondiusTrajansColumn.jpg
[902a] Trajan, 25 January 98 - 8 or 9 August 117 A.D.101 viewsTRAJAN AE dupondius. Cohen 563, RCV 3323. 29mm, 14.1g. Struck circa 115 AD. Obverse: IMP CAESAR NERVAE TRAIANO AVG GER DAC P M TR P COS VI P P, radiate, draped bust right; Reverse: SENATVS POPVLVSQVE ROMANVS, S-C, Trajan's column, eagles at base. This type is noticeably scarcer than the SPQR OPTIMO PRINCIPI type. Ex. Incitatus Coins. Photo courtesy of Incitatus Coins.

De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families

Trajan (A.D. 98-117)

Herbert W. Benario
Emory University

Introduction and Sources
"During a happy period of more than fourscore years, the public administration was conducted by the virtue and abilities of Nerva, Trajan, Hadrian, and the two Antonines. It is the design of this and of the two succeeding chapters to describe the prosperous condition of their empire, and afterwards, from the death of Marcus Antoninus, to deduce the most important circumstances of its decline and fall, a revolution which will ever be remembered and is still felt by the nations of the earth."

This is perhaps the most important and best known of all Edward Gibbon's famous dicta about his vast subject, and particularly that period which he admired the most. It was a concatenation of chance and events which brought to the first position of the principate five men, each very different from the others, who each, in his own way, brought integrity and a sense of public duty to his tasks. Nerva's tenure was brief, as many no doubt had expected and hoped it would be, and perhaps his greatest achievement was to choose Trajan as his adoptive son and intended successor. It was a splendid choice. Trajan was one of Rome's most admirable figures, a man who merited the renown which he enjoyed in his lifetime and in subsequent generations.

The sources for the man and his principate are disappointingly skimpy. There is no contemporaneous historian who can illuminate the period. Tacitus speaks only occasionally of Trajan, there is no biography by Suetonius, nor even one by the author of the late and largely fraudulent Historia Augusta. (However, a modern version of what such a life might have been like has been composed by A. Birley, entirely based upon ancient evidence. It is very useful.) Pliny the Younger tells us the most, in his Panegyricus, his long address of thanks to the emperor upon assuming the consulship in late 100, and in his letters. Pliny was a wordy and congenial man, who reveals a great deal about his senatorial peers and their relations with the emperor, above all, of course, his own. The most important part is the tenth book of his Epistulae, which contains the correspondence between him, while serving in Bithynia, and the emperor, to whom he referred all manner of problems, important as well as trivial. Best known are the pair (96,97) dealing with the Christians and what was to be done with them. These would be extraordinarily valuable if we could be sure that the imperial replies stemmed directly from Trajan, but that is more than one can claim. The imperial chancellery had developed greatly in previous decades and might pen these communications after only the most general directions from the emperor. The letters are nonetheless unique in the insight they offer into the emperor's mind.

Cassius Dio, who wrote in the decade of the 230s, wrote a long imperial history which has survived only in abbreviated form in book LXVIII for the Trajanic period. The rhetorician Dio of Prusa, a contemporary of the emperor, offers little of value. Fourth-century epitomators, Aurelius Victor and Eutropius, offer some useful material. Inscriptions, coins, papyri, and legal texts are of major importance. Since Trajan was a builder of many significant projects, archaeology contributes mightily to our understanding of the man.

Early Life and Career
The patria of the Ulpii was Italica, in Spanish Baetica , where their ancestors had settled late in the third century B.C. This indicates that the Italian origin was paramount, yet it has recently been cogently argued that the family's ancestry was local, with Trajan senior actually a Traius who was adopted into the family of the Ulpii. Trajan's father was the first member of the family to pursue a senatorial career; it proved to be a very successful one. Born probably about the year 30, he perhaps commanded a legion under Corbulo in the early sixties and then was legate of legio X Fretensis under Vespasian, governor of Judaea. Success in the Jewish War was rewarded by the governorship of an unknown province and then a consulate in 70. He was thereafter adlected by the emperor in patricios and sent to govern Baetica. Then followed the governorship of one of the major military provinces, Syria, where he prevented a Parthian threat of invasion, and in 79/80 he was proconsul of Asia, one of the two provinces (the other was Africa) which capped a senatorial career. His public service now effectively over, he lived on in honor and distinction, in all likelihood seeing his son emperor. He probably died before 100. He was deified in 113 and his titulature read divus Traianus pater. Since his son was also the adoptive son of Nerva, the emperor had officially two fathers, a unique circumstance.

The son was born in Italica on September 18, 53; his mother was Marcia, who had given birth to a daughter, Ulpia Marciana, five years before the birth of the son. In the mid seventies, he was a legionary legate under his father in Syria. He then married a lady from Nemausus (Nimes) in Gallia Narbonensis, Pompeia Plotina, was quaestor about 78 and praetor about 84. In 86, he became one of the child Hadrian's guardians. He was then appointed legate of legio VII Gemina in Hispania Tarraconensis, from which he marched at Domitian's orders in 89 to crush the uprising of Antonius Saturninus along the Rhine. He next fought in Domitian's war against the Germans along Rhine and Danube and was rewarded with an ordinary consulship in 91. Soon followed the governorship of Moesia inferior and then that of Germania superior, with his headquarters at Moguntiacum (Mainz), whither Hadrian brought him the news in autumn 97 that he had been adopted by the emperor Nerva, as co-ruler and intended successor. Already recipient of the title imperator and possessor of the tribunician power, when Nerva died on January 27, 98, Trajan became emperor in a smooth transition of power which marked the next three quarters of a century.

(For a detailed and interesting discussion of the Emperor Trajan please see: http://www.roman-emperors.org/trajan.htm)

Trajan's honors and reputation
Hadrian saw to it that Trajan received all customary honors: the late emperor was declared a divus, his victories were commemorated in a great triumph, and his ashes were placed in the base of his column. Trajan's reputation remained unimpaired, in spite of the ultimate failure of his last campaigns. Early in his principate, he had unofficially been honored with the title optimus, "the best," which long described him even before it became, in 114, part of his official titulature. His correspondence with Pliny enables posterity to gain an intimate sense of the emperor in action. His concern for justice and the well-being of his subjects is underscored by his comment to Pliny, when faced with the question of the Christians, that they were not to be sought out, "nor is it appropriate to our age." At the onset of his principate, Tacitus called Trajan's accession the beginning of a beatissimum saeculum, and so it remained in the public mind. Admired by the people, respected by the senatorial aristocracy, he faced no internal difficulties, with no rival nor opposition. His powers were as extensive as Domitian's had been, but his use and display of these powers were very different from those of his predecessor, who had claimed to be deus et dominus. Not claiming to be a god, he was recognized in the official iconography of sculpture as Jupiter's viceregent on earth, so depicted on the attic reliefs of the Beneventan arch. The passage of time increased Trajan's aura rather than diminished it. In the late fourth century, when the Roman Empire had dramatically changed in character from what it had been in Trajan's time, each new emperor was hailed with the prayer, felicior Augusto, melior Traiano, "may he be luckier than Augustus and better than Trajan." That reputation has essentially survived into the present day.

Copyright (C) 2000, Herbert W. Benario.
Published: De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families http://www.roman-emperors.org/startup.htm. Used by permission.

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.
Cleisthenes
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