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    HELIOPOLIS.----There were more cities than one of this name. That however, which is distinguished numismatically, was situated near Mount Lebanon; and having received from the Egyptian Heliopolis an idol of the Sun, adopted the same appellation. It became a Roman colony under Julius Caesar 's foundation, and therefore called Julia. Augustus sent many veterans to it; and the name of Augusta was consequently added to its colonial titles.
    The jus Italicum was moreover conferred upon it by Septimius Severus, for its attachment to his interest during his struggle for empire with Pescennius Niger. The ancient Heliopolis is now called Bulbec or Baalbeck; and the ruins of its once celebrated temple still exist. It is marked by some geographers a city of Phoenicia, by others a city of Cuele-syria. Those, however, who place it in Phoenicia, make a double Phoenicia, one proper or by the sea shore, the other Lybanisia, or Damascan (Damascena----Plin. 1. v. c.18). That old soldiers were sent by Augustus to Heliopolis as a recruitment to the colony, drafted from the Fifth or Macedonia, is shown by its coins under Philip I. This city inscribed money to Nerva, Hadrian, Antoninus Pius, M. Aurelius, Commodus, Pertinax, Septimius Severus, Julia Domna, Caracalla, Plautilla, Geta, Macrinus, Severus Alexander, Gordianus Pius, Philip I, Philip II, Valerianus, Gallienus; and styled COL. H. or HEL. Colonia Heliopolis. On one of Caracalla 's it bears the title of COL. IVL. AVG. FEL. HEL. Colonia Julia Augusta Felix Heliopolis, or Heliopolitani.----The epigraph of this colony on a coin of Philip I is COL. HEL. LEG. V. MACED. AVG.  Colonia Heliopolis Legionum Quintae Macedonicae et Octavae Augustae.----Spanheim, ii. p. 602----Vaillant, in Col, i. and ii.
    The coins of this colony are Latin imperial, in small, middle, and large brass (See Mionnet, Supplt. T. viii. 208). Amongst the types which occur on their reverses are the following, viz.:

    Astarte.----On large brass of Philip I. A woman, with tutulated head, standing, and clothed in the stola, holds a rudder in the right hand, and a cornucopiae in the left. At her feet are two small figures, each supporting a vexillum. On either side, elevated on a cippus, is a young draped female, each holding the ends of a veil, floating in the air above the head of the goddess, whom Vaillant calls the genius of Heliopolis, and Mionnet describes as Astarte.----It is at any rate as remarkable a type as any engraved on a colonial coin.

    Athleta (wrestler).----On a second brass struck by the Heliopolitans, in honour of the emperor Valerianus, a male figure naked, stands with his right hand placed on a vase (or is in the act of

receiving it as a prize). He holds in his left hand a palm-branch, the symbol of victory.----[Coins were minted at Heliopolis to record the arrival of Valerianus in Syria, on his way to undertake against the Persians (A.D. 258), an expedition, to the catastrophe of which he fell a miserable victim].
    The abbreviated legend COL. CER. SAC. CAP. OEC. ISEL. HEL. Vaillant, supported by Bimard, interprets Colonia Certamen Sacrum Capitolinum, Oecumenicum, Iselasticum, Heliopolitanum, and considers that it alludes to the public games which were celebrated at Heliopolis in the above named emperor 's presence, the same year. In these games the objects of competition and contest were of a three-fold kind, namely equestrian, gymnastic, and musical. The certamen was called Oecumenicum; because not only Syrian athletae, but other champions, from all parts, were admitted as candidates for the prizes.----Iselasticum, because the victors were said (ILLEGIBLE GREEK LETTERING), to be carried in quadrigae through the country. The shows were called sacred (sacrum), because they were celebrated in honor of some deity; and at Heliopolis they were dedicated to Jupiter, surnamed Capitolinus by the Romans. ----Colonia, ii. 37.
    The above figure is that of an Athleta, who seems to have triumphed in the gymnastic branch of the certamen, which itself comprised five different kinds of bodily exercises, viz. running, leaping, wrestling, pugilism, and throwing the discus, in all which they contended naked.----The vase or discus was the prize, the palm-branch the symbol of victory.----(ii. 231-233).
    Colonist driving Oxen at plough, behind which are two military ensigns.----See COLONIAE ROMANAE, p. 227.
    Cornucopiae (double, with caduceus between them). On third brass of Gallienus.
    Eagles.----Two legionary eagles within a wreath of laurel appear on third brass coins of Heliopolis, dedicated to Septimius Severus, and to his second son Geta; also to his wife Julia Domna, who was a native of the province in which this colony was situated. The same type likewise occurs on a medal of Philip II.----[The eagle-standard of Roman colonies, indicates (as has already been observed), the origin of such colonies from the veterans of a legion; and when two eagles are represented, they argue that the colonists had been selected and sent from the soldiers of two legions. The two here alluded to were the 5th and 8th. See Philip sen.----Vaillant, ii. p.20.]
    Fortunae Duae.----On a coin of this colony, inscribed to Hadrian, two draped females stand arm in arm. One holds a rudder in the right hand, the other a similar attribute in the left.
     [The legend is LEG. H. COL. H. which Vaillant (i. 158), interprets Legio Heliopolis----Colonia Heliopolis; adding that "under the effigies of two Fortunes, which often stand for genii loci, the people of this city, mindful of their Roman origin, dedicated the genius of the legion and that of the colony to Hadrian, then tarrying within the borders of Syria."----Bimard, in noticing the same coin, whilst admitting that it is properly assigned to Heliopolis, in Caelesyria, expresses his opinion that LEG. H. should be explained by Legio Octava; the 8th legion (Macedonica) belonging to this colony, and the letter H. being employed, after the fashion of the Greeks, for a numeral sign. This eminent numismatist supports himself in this hypothesis on the precedent of a coin struck in the same colony, also under Philip, and which exhibits the union of a Greek legend with a Latin legend. (ad Jobert, ii. 187).-----Pellerin, commenting on these two opinions, says "there is no apparent likelihood that the city which coined the medals here quoted by Bimard, should have used numeral letters purely Latin on the one, and Greek numerals on the other, for the purpose of designating the Roman legions which were stationed in this colony." He therefore infers, as Vaillant does, that it was a legion bearing the name of Heliopolis, the initial of which follows the abbreviated word LEG. in the reverse legend of this coin, and he adds that it was, beyond doubt, struck at the Caele-syrian Heliopolis.----Melange, i. 273].

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