Nov 8 2017

Eastern Roman Empire VALENS Solidus NGC VF 4/1 ancient gold coin

Eastern Roman Empire VALENS Solidus NGC VF 4/1 ancient gold coin

Eastern Roman Empire VALENS Solidus NGC VF 4/1 ancient gold coin

Eastern Roman Empire VALENS Solidus NGC VF 4/1 ancient gold coin

NGC VF 4/1 crimped. A nice gold tone remains along with plenty of detail. The item “Eastern Roman Empire VALENS Solidus NGC VF 4/1 ancient gold coin” is in sale since Saturday, November 04, 2017. This item is in the category “Coins & Paper Money\Coins\ Ancient\Roman\ Imperial (27 BC-476 AD)”. The seller is “corneralleycollectibles” and is located in Henderson, Nevada. This item can be shipped to United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Denmark, Romania, Slovakia, Bulgaria, Czech republic, Finland, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Estonia, Australia, Greece, Portugal, Cyprus, Slovenia, Japan, Sweden, Indonesia, Belgium, France, Hong Kong, Ireland, Netherlands, Poland, Spain, Italy, Germany, Austria, Singapore, Norway, Saudi arabia, United arab emirates, Bahrain, Croatia, Malaysia, Chile, Colombia, Costa rica, Panama, Trinidad and tobago, Guatemala, Honduras, Jamaica.
  • Certification: NGC
  • Ruler: Valens
  • Denomination: Solidus
  • Composition: Gold

Nov 8 2017

Constantine I The Great founds Constantinople Ancient Roman Coin Nike i32506

Constantine I The Great founds Constantinople Ancient Roman Coin Nike i32506

Constantine I The Great founds Constantinople Ancient Roman Coin Nike i32506

Item: i32506 Authentic Ancient Coin of. Constantine I’The Great’- Roman Emperor: 307-337 A. Founding of New Roman Capital Constantinople Commemorative Bronze AE3 15mm (0.78 grams) Thessalonica mint: 330-333A. Reference: RIC 188 (VII, Thessalonica) CONSTANTINOPOLIS – Constantinopolis helmeted, laureate bust left, holding scepter over shoulder. No legend Exe: SMTS – Victory (Nike) standing left, stepping on galley prow, cradling scepter and resting hand on shield. Numismatic Note: Commemorates founding of Constantinople as new Roman capital by Constantine I the Great. Was a goddess who personified victory , also known as the Winged Goddess of Victory. The Roman equivalent was Victoria. Depending upon the time of various myths, she was described as the daughter of Pallas (Titan) and Styx (Water) and the sister of Kratos (Strength), Bia (Force), and Zelus (Zeal). Nike and her siblings were close companions of Zeus , the dominant deity of the Greek pantheon. According to classical (later) myth, Styx brought them to Zeus when the god was assembling allies for the Titan War against the older deities. Nike assumed the role of the divine charioteer , a role in which she often is portrayed in Classical Greek art. Nike flew around battlefields rewarding the victors with glory and fame. Nike is seen with wings in most statues and paintings. Most other winged deities in the Greek pantheon had shed their wings by Classical times. Nike is the goddess of strength, speed, and victory. Nike was a very close acquaintance of Athena , and is thought to have stood in Athena’s outstretched hand in the statue of Athena located in the Parthenon. Nike is one of the most commonly portrayed figures on Greek coins. Names stemming from Nike include amongst others: Nicholas , Nicola, Nick, Nikolai, Nils, Klaas, Nicole, Ike, Niki, Nikita, Nika, Niketas, and Nico. Constantine the Great Latin. Flavius Valerius Aurelius Constantinus Augustus. 272 22 May 337, also known as Constantine I or Saint Constantine , was Roman Emperor from 306 to 337. Well known for being the first Roman emperor to be converted to Christianity , Constantine and co-Emperor Licinius issued the Edict of Milan in 313, which proclaimed tolerance of all religions throughout the empire. Maxentius and Licinius during civil wars. He also fought successfully against the Franks , Alamanni , Visigoths , and Sarmatians during his reign even resettling parts of Dacia which had been abandoned during the previous century. Constantine built a new imperial residence at Byzantium , naming it New Rome. However, in Constantine’s honor, people called it Constantinople , which would later be the capital of what is now known as the Byzantine Empire. Flavius Valerius Constantinus, as he was originally named, was born in the city of Naissus, Dardania province of Moesia , in present-day Ni , Serbia , on 27 February of an uncertain year, probably near 272. His father was Flavius Constantius , a native of Dardania province of Moesia (later Dacia Ripensis). Constantius was a tolerant and politically skilled man. Constantine probably spent little time with his father. Constantius was an officer in the Roman army, part of the Emperor Aurelian’s imperial bodyguard. Constantius advanced through the ranks, earning the governorship of Dalmatia from Emperor Diocletian , another of Aurelian’s companions from Illyricum , in 284 or 285. Helena gave birth to the future emperor Constantine I on 27 February of an uncertain year soon after 270 (probably around 272). At the time, she was in Naissus (Ni , Serbia). In order to obtain a wife more consonant with his rising status, Constantius divorced Helena some time before 289, when he married Theodora , Maximian’s daughter. (The narrative sources date the marriage to 293, but the Latin panegyric of 289 refers to the couple as already married). Helena and her son were dispatched to the court of Diocletian at Nicomedia, where Constantine grew to be a member of the inner circle. Helena never remarried and lived for a time in obscurity, though close to her only son, who had a deep regard and affection for her. She received the title of Augusta in 325 and died in 330 with her son at her side. She was buried in the Mausoleum of Helena , outside Rome on the Via Labicana. Her sarcophagus is on display in the Pio-Clementine Vatican Museum , although the connection is often questioned, next to her is the sarcophagus of her granddaughter Saint Constantina (Saint Constance). The elaborate reliefs contain hunting scenes. During her life, she gave many presents to the poor, released prisoners and mingled with the ordinary worshippers in modest attire. Constantine received a formal education at Diocletian’s court, where he learned Latin literature, Greek, and philosophy. On 1 May 305, Diocletian, as a result of a debilitating sickness taken in the winter of 3045, announced his resignation. In a parallel ceremony in Milan, Maximian did the same. Lactantius states that Galerius manipulated the weakened Diocletian into resigning, and forced him to accept Galerius’ allies in the imperial succession. According to Lactantius, the crowd listening to Diocletian’s resignation speech believed, until the very last moment, that Diocletian would choose Constantine and Maxentius (Maximian’s son) as his successors. It was not to be: Constantius and Galerius were promoted to Augusti, while Severus and Maximin were appointed their Caesars respectively. Constantine and Maxentius were ignored. Constantine recognized the implicit danger in remaining at Galerius’ court, where he was held as a virtual hostage. His career depended on being rescued by his father in the west. Constantius was quick to intervene. In the late spring or early summer of 305, Constantius requested leave for his son, to help him campaign in Britain. After a long evening of drinking, Galerius granted the request. Constantine’s later propaganda describes how he fled the court in the night, before Galerius could change his mind. Constantine joined his father in Gaul , at Bononia (Boulogne) before the summer of 305. From Bononia they crossed the Channel to Britain and made their way to Eboracum (York), capital of the province of Britannia Secunda and home to a large military base. Constantine was able to spend a year in northern Britain at his father’s side, campaigning against the Picts beyond Hadrian’s Wall in the summer and autumn. Constantius’s campaign, like that of Septimius Severus before it, probably advanced far into the north without achieving great success. Constantius had become severely sick over the course of his reign, and died on 25 July 306 in Eboracum (York). Before dying, he declared his support for raising Constantine to the rank of full Augustus. The Alamannic king Chrocus , a barbarian taken into service under Constantius, then proclaimed Constantine as Augustus. The troops loyal to Constantius’ memory followed him in acclamation. Gaul and Britain quickly accepted his rule; Iberia, which had been in his father’s domain for less than a year, rejected it. Constantine sent Galerius an official notice of Constantius’s death and his own acclamation. Along with the notice, he included a portrait of himself in the robes of an Augustus. The portrait was wreathed in bay. He requested recognition as heir to his father’s throne, and passed off responsibility for his unlawful ascension on his army, claiming they had “forced it upon him”. Galerius was put into a fury by the message; he almost set the portrait on fire. His advisers calmed him, and argued that outright denial of Constantine’s claims would mean certain war. Galerius was compelled to compromise: he granted Constantine the title “Caesar” rather than “Augustus” (the latter office went to Severus instead). Wishing to make it clear that he alone gave Constantine legitimacy, Galerius personally sent Constantine the emperor’s traditional purple robes. Constantine accepted the decision. Constantine’s share of the Empire consisted of Britain, Gaul, and Spain. Because Constantine was still largely untried and had a hint of illegitimacy about him, he relied on his father’s reputation in his early propaganda: the earliest panegyrics to Constantine give as much coverage to his father’s deeds as to those of Constantine himself. Constantine’s military skill and building projects soon gave the panegyrist the opportunity to comment favorably on the similarities between father and son, and Eusebius remarked that Constantine was a “renewal, as it were, in his own person, of his father’s life and reign”. Constantinian coinage, sculpture and oratory also shows a new tendency for disdain towards the “barbarians” beyond the frontiers. After Constantine’s victory over the Alemanni, he minted a coin issue depicting weeping and begging Alemannic tribesmen”The Alemanni conquered”beneath the phrase “Romans’ rejoicing”. There was little sympathy for these enemies. As his panegyrist declared: It is a stupid clemency that spares the conquered foe. In 310, a dispossessed and power-hungry Maximian rebelled against Constantine while Constantine was away campaigning against the Franks. Maximian had been sent south to Arles with a contingent of Constantine’s army, in preparation for any attacks by Maxentius in southern Gaul. He announced that Constantine was dead, and took up the imperial purple. In spite of a large donative pledge to any who would support him as emperor, most of Constantine’s army remained loyal to their emperor, and Maximian was soon compelled to leave. Constantine soon heard of the rebellion, abandoned his campaign against the Franks, and marched his army up the Rhine. At Cabillunum (Chalon-sur-Saône), he moved his troops onto waiting boats to row down the slow waters of the Saône to the quicker waters of the Rhone. He disembarked at Lugdunum (Lyon). Maximian fled to Massilia (Marseille), a town better able to withstand a long siege than Arles. It made little difference, however, as loyal citizens opened the rear gates to Constantine. Maximian was captured and reproved for his crimes. Constantine granted some clemency, but strongly encouraged his suicide. In July 310, Maximian hanged himself. The death of Maximian required a shift in Constantine’s public image. Breaking away from tetrarchic models, the speech emphasizes Constantine’s ancestral prerogative to rule, rather than principles of imperial equality. The new ideology expressed in the speech made Galerius and Maximian irrelevant to Constantine’s right to rule. Indeed, the orator emphasizes ancestry to the exclusion of all other factors: “No chance agreement of men, nor some unexpected consequence of favor, made you emperor, ” the orator declares to Constantine. A gold multiple of “Unconquered Constantine” with Sol Invictus, struck in 313. The use of Sol’s image appealed to both the educated citizens of Gaul, who would recognize in it Apollo’s patronage of Augustus and the arts; and to Christians, who found solar monotheism less objectionable than the traditional pagan pantheon. The oration also moves away from the religious ideology of the Tetrarchy, with its focus on twin dynasties of Jupiter and Hercules. Instead, the orator proclaims that Constantine experienced a divine vision of Apollo and Victory granting him laurel wreaths of health and a long reign. In the likeness of Apollo Constantine recognized himself as the saving figure to whom would be granted “rule of the whole world”, as the poet Virgil had once foretold. The oration’s religious shift is paralleled by a similar shift in Constantine’s coinage. In his early reign, the coinage of Constantine advertised Mars as his patron. From 310 on, Mars was replaced by Sol Invictus , a god conventionally identified with Apollo. By the middle of 310, Galerius had become too ill to involve himself in imperial politics. His final act survives: a letter to the provincials posted in Nicomedia on 30 April 311, proclaiming an end to the persecutions, and the resumption of religious toleration. He died soon after the edict’s proclamation, destroying what little remained of the tetrarchy. Maximin mobilized against Licinius, and seized Asia Minor. A hasty peace was signed on a boat in the middle of the Bosphorus. While Constantine toured Britain and Gaul, Maxentius prepared for war. He fortified northern Italy, and strengthened his support in the Christian community by allowing it to elect a new Bishop of Rome , Eusebius. Constantine’s advisers and generals cautioned against preemptive attack on Maxentius; even his soothsayers recommended against it, stating that the sacrifices had produced unfavorable omens. Constantine, with a spirit that left a deep impression on his followers, inspiring some to believe that he had some form of supernatural guidance, ignored all these cautions. Early in the spring of 312, Constantine crossed the Cottian Alps with a quarter of his army, a force numbering about 40,000. The first town his army encountered was Segusium (Susa , Italy), a heavily fortified town that shut its gates to him. Constantine ordered his men to set fire to its gates and scale its walls. He took the town quickly. Constantine ordered his troops not to loot the town, and advanced with them into northern Italy. At the approach to the west of the important city of Augusta Taurinorum (Turin , Italy), Constantine met a large force of heavily armed Maxentian cavalry. In the ensuing battle Constantine’s army encircled Maxentius’ cavalry, flanked them with his own cavalry, and dismounted them with blows from his soldiers’ iron-tipped clubs. Constantine’s armies emerged victorious. Turin refused to give refuge to Maxentius’ retreating forces, opening its gates to Constantine instead. Other cities of the north Italian plain sent Constantine embassies of congratulation for his victory. He moved on to Milan, where he was met with open gates and jubilant rejoicing. Constantine rested his army in Milan until mid-summer 312, when he moved on to Brixia (Brescia). Brescia’s army was easily dispersed, and Constantine quickly advanced to Verona , where a large Maxentian force was camped. Ruricius Pompeianus, general of the Veronese forces and Maxentius’ praetorian prefect, was in a strong defensive position, since the town was surrounded on three sides by the Adige. Constantine sent a small force north of the town in an attempt to cross the river unnoticed. Ruricius sent a large detachment to counter Constantine’s expeditionary force, but was defeated. Constantine’s forces successfully surrounded the town and laid siege. Constantine refused to let up on the siege, and sent only a small force to oppose him. In the desperately fought encounter that followed, Ruricius was killed and his army destroyed. Verona surrendered soon afterwards, followed by Aquileia , Mutina (Modena). The road to Rome was now wide open to Constantine. Maxentius prepared for the same type of war he had waged against Severus and Galerius: he sat in Rome and prepared for a siege. He still controlled Rome’s praetorian guards, was well-stocked with African grain, and was surrounded on all sides by the seemingly impregnable Aurelian Walls. He ordered all bridges across the Tiber cut, reportedly on the counsel of the gods, and left the rest of central Italy undefended; Constantine secured that region’s support without challenge. Constantine progressed slowly along the Via Flaminia , allowing the weakness of Maxentius to draw his regime further into turmoil. Maxentius’ support continued to weaken: at chariot races on 27 October, the crowd openly taunted Maxentius, shouting that Constantine was invincible. Maxentius, no longer certain that he would emerge from a siege victorious, built a temporary boat bridge across the Tiber in preparation for a field battle against Constantine. On 28 October 312, the sixth anniversary of his reign, he approached the keepers of the Sibylline Books for guidance. The keepers prophesied that, on that very day, “the enemy of the Romans” would die. Maxentius advanced north to meet Constantine in battle. Maxentius organized his forcesstill twice the size of Constantine’sin long lines facing the battle plain, with their backs to the river. Constantine’s army arrived at the field bearing unfamiliar symbols on either its standards or its soldiers’ shields. Eusebius describes the sign as Chi traversed by Rho : , a symbol representing the first two letters of the Greek spelling of the word Christos or Christ. Constantine deployed his own forces along the whole length of Maxentius’ line. He ordered his cavalry to charge, and they broke Maxentius’ cavalry. He then sent his infantry against Maxentius’ infantry, pushing many into the Tiber where they were slaughtered and drowned. The battle was brief: Maxentius’ troops were broken before the first charge. Maxentius’ horse guards and praetorians initially held their position, but broke under the force of a Constantinian cavalry charge; they also broke ranks and fled to the river. Maxentius rode with them, and attempted to cross the bridge of boats, but he was pushed by the mass of his fleeing soldiers into the Tiber, and drowned. Constantine entered Rome on 29 October. He staged a grand adventus in the city, and was met with popular jubilation. Maxentius’ body was fished out of the Tiber and decapitated. His head was paraded through the streets for all to see. Unlike his predecessors, Constantine neglected to make the trip to the Capitoline Hill and perform customary sacrifices at the Temple of Jupiter. He issued decrees returning property lost under Maxentius, recalling political exiles, and releasing Maxentius’ imprisoned opponents. In the following years, Constantine gradually consolidated his military superiority over his rivals in the crumbling Tetrarchy. In 313, he met Licinius in Milan to secure their alliance by the marriage of Licinius and Constantine’s half-sister Constantia. During this meeting, the emperors agreed on the so-called Edict of Milan , officially granting full tolerance to Christianity and all religions in the Empire. The document had special benefits for Christians, legalizing their religion and granting them restoration for all property seized during Diocletian’s persecution. In the year 320, Licinius reneged on the religious freedom promised by the Edict of Milan in 313 and began to oppress Christians anew, generally without bloodshed, but resorting to confiscations and sacking of Christian office-holders. That became a challenge to Constantine in the West, climaxing in the great civil war of 324. Licinius, aided by Goth mercenaries , represented the past and the ancient Pagan faiths. Constantine and his Franks marched under the standard of the labarum , and both sides saw the battle in religious terms. Outnumbered, but fired by their zeal, Constantine’s army emerged victorious in the Battle of Adrianople. Licinius fled across the Bosphorus and appointed Martius Martinianus , the commander of his bodyguard, as Caesar, but Constantine next won the Battle of the Hellespont , and finally the Battle of Chrysopolis on 18 September 324. Licinius and Martinianus surrendered to Constantine at Nicomedia on the promise their lives would be spared: they were sent to live as private citizens in Thessalonica and Cappadocia respectively, but in 325 Constantine accused Licinius of plotting against him and had them both arrested and hanged; Licinius’s son (the son of Constantine’s half-sister) was also killed. Thus Constantine became the sole emperor of the Roman Empire. Licinius’ defeat came to represent the defeat of a rival center of Pagan and Greek-speaking political activity in the East, as opposed to the Christian and Latin-speaking Rome, and it was proposed that a new Eastern capital should represent the integration of the East into the Roman Empire as a whole, as a center of learning, prosperity, and cultural preservation for the whole of the Eastern Roman Empire. Among the various locations proposed for this alternative capital, Constantine appears to have toyed earlier with Serdica (present-day Sofia), as he was reported saying that ” Serdica is my Rome “. Sirmium and Thessalonica were also considered. Eventually, however, Constantine decided to work on the Greek city of Byzantium , which offered the advantage of having already been extensively rebuilt on Roman patterns of urbanism, during the preceding century, by Septimius Severus and Caracalla , who had already acknowledged its strategic importance. The city was then renamed Constantinopolis (“Constantine’s City” or Constantinople in English), and issued special commemorative coins in 330 to honor the event. The new city was protected by the relics of the True Cross , the Rod of Moses and other holy relics , though a cameo now at the Hermitage Museum also represented Constantine crowned by the tyche of the new city. The figures of old gods were either replaced or assimilated into a framework of Christian symbolism. Constantine built the new Church of the Holy Apostles on the site of a temple to Aphrodite. Generations later there was the story that a divine vision led Constantine to this spot, and an angel no one else could see, led him on a circuit of the new walls. The capital would often be compared to the’old’ Rome as Nova Roma Constantinopolitana , the “New Rome of Constantinople”. Constantine the Great , mosaic in Hagia Sophia, c. Constantine is perhaps best known for being the first “Christian” Roman emperor. Scholars debate whether Constantine adopted his mother. S Christianity in his youth, or whether he adopted it gradually over the course of his life. Constantine was over 40 when he finally declared himself a Christian, writing to Christians to make clear that he believed he owed his successes to the protection of the Christian High God alone. Throughout his rule, Constantine supported the Church financially, built basilicas, granted privileges to clergy e. His most famous building projects include the Church of the Holy Sepulchre , and Old Saint Peter’s Basilica. However, Constantine certainly did not patronize Christianity alone. After gaining victory in the Battle of the Milvian Bridge (312), a triumphal archthe Arch of Constantine was built (315) to celebrate his triumph. The arch is most notably decorated with images of the goddess Victoria and, at the time of its dedication, sacrifices to gods like Apollo , Diana , and Hercules were made. Most notably absent from the Arch are any depictions whatsoever regarding Christian symbolism. Later in 321, Constantine instructed that Christians and non-Christians should be united in observing the venerable day of the sun , referencing the sun-worship that Aurelian had established as an official cult. Furthermore, and long after his oft alleged “conversion” to Christianity, Constantine’s coinage continued to carry the symbols of the sun. Even after the pagan gods had disappeared from the coinage, Christian symbols appeared only as Constantine’s personal attributes: the chi rho between his hands or on his labarum , but never on the coin itself. Even when Constantine dedicated the new capital of Constantinople, which became the seat of Byzantine Christianity for a millennium, he did so wearing the Apollonian sun-rayed Diadem ; no Christian symbols were present at this dedication. Constantine made new laws regarding the Jews. They were forbidden to own Christian slaves or to circumcise their slaves. Beginning in the mid-3rd century the emperors began to favor members of the equestrian order over senators, who had had a monopoly on the most important offices of state. Senators were stripped of the command of legions and most provincial governorships (as it was felt that they lacked the specialized military upbringing needed in an age of acute defense needs), such posts being given to equestrians by Diocletian and his colleaguesfollowing a practice enforced piecemeal by their predecessors. The emperors however, still needed the talents and the help of the very rich, who were relied on to maintain social order and cohesion by means of a web of powerful influence and contacts at all levels. Exclusion of the old senatorial aristocracy threatened this arrangement. In 326, Constantine reversed this pro-equestrian trend, raising many administrative positions to senatorial rank and thus opening these offices to the old aristocracy, and at the same time elevating the rank of already existing equestrians office-holders to senator, eventually wiping out the equestrian orderat least as a bureaucratic rankin the process. One could become a senator, either by being elected praetor or (in most cases) by fulfilling a function of senatorial rank: from then on, holding of actual power and social status were melded together into a joint imperial hierarchy. At the same time, Constantine gained with this the support of the old nobility, as the Senate was allowed itself to elect praetors and quaestors , in place of the usual practice of the emperors directly creating new magistrates (adlectio). The Senate as a body remained devoid of any significant power; nevertheless, the senators, who had been marginalized as potential holders of imperial functions during the 3rd century, could now dispute such positions alongside more upstart bureaucrats. Some modern historians see in those administrative reforms an attempt by Constantine at reintegrating the senatorial order into the imperial administrative elite to counter the possibility of alienating pagan senators from a Christianized imperial rule. Constantine’s reforms had to do only with the civilian administration: the military chiefs, who since the Crisis of the Third Century had risen from the ranks, remained outside the senate, in which they were included only by Constantine’s children. The failure of the various Diocletianic attempts at the restoration of a functioning silver coin resided in the fact that the silver currency was overvalued in terms of its actual metal content, and therefore could only circulate at much discounted rates. Minting of the Diocletianic “pure” silver argenteus ceased, therefore, soon after 305, while the billon currency continued to be used until the 360s. From the early 300s on, Constantine forsook any attempts at restoring the silver currency, preferring instead to concentrate on minting large quantities of good standard gold piecesthe solidus , 72 of which made a pound of gold. New (and highly debased) silver pieces would continue to be issued during Constantine’s later reign and after his death, in a continuous process of retariffing, until this billon minting eventually ceased, de jure , in 367, with the silver piece being de facto continued by various denominations of bronze coins, the most important being the centenionalis. Later emperors like Julian the Apostate tried to present themselves as advocates of the humiles by insisting on trustworthy mintings of the bronze currency. Constantine’s monetary policy were closely associated with his religious ones, in that increased minting was associated with measures of confiscationtaken since 331 and closed in 336of all gold, silver and bronze statues from pagan temples, who were declared as imperial property and, as such, as monetary assets. Two imperial commissioners for each province had the task of getting hold of the statues and having them melded for immediate mintingwith the exception of a number of bronze statues who were used as public monuments for the beautification of the new capital in Constantinople. Constantine considered Constantinople as his capital and permanent residence. He lived there for a good portion of his later life. He rebuilt Trajan’s bridge across the Danube, in hopes of reconquering Dacia , a province that had been abandoned under Aurelian. In the late winter of 332, Constantine campaigned with the Sarmatians against the Goths. The weather and lack of food cost the Goths dearly: reportedly, nearly one hundred thousand died before they submitted to Rome. In 334, after Sarmatian commoners had overthrown their leaders, Constantine led a campaign against the tribe. He won a victory in the war and extended his control over the region, as remains of camps and fortifications in the region indicate. Constantine resettled some Sarmatian exiles as farmers in Illyrian and Roman districts, and conscripted the rest into the army. Constantine took the title Dacicus maximus in 336. Constantine had known death would soon come. Soon after the Feast of Easter 337, Constantine fell seriously ill. He left Constantinople for the hot baths near his mother’s city of Helenopolis (Altinova), on the southern shores of the Gulf of zmit. There, in a church his mother built in honor of Lucian the Apostle, he prayed, and there he realized that he was dying. Seeking purification, he became a catechumen , and attempted a return to Constantinople, making it only as far as a suburb of Nicomedia. He summoned the bishops, and told them of his hope to be baptized in the River Jordan , where Christ was written to have been baptized. He requested the baptism right away. The bishops, Eusebius records, “performed the sacred ceremonies according to custom”. He chose the Arianizing bishop Eusebius of Nicomedia , bishop of the city where he lay dying, as his baptizer. In postponing his baptism, he followed one custom at the time which postponed baptism until after infancy. Constantine died soon after at a suburban villa called Achyron, on the last day of the fifty-day festival of Pentecost directly following Pascha (or Easter), on 22 May 337. Following his death, his body was transferred to Constantinople and buried in the Church of the Holy Apostles there. He was succeeded by his three sons born of Fausta, Constantine II , Constantius II and Constans. A number of relatives were killed by followers of Constantius, notably Constantine’s nephews Dalmatius (who held the rank of Caesar) and Hannibalianus , presumably to eliminate possible contenders to an already complicated succession. He also had two daughters, Constantina and Helena , wife of Emperor Julian. The Byzantine Empire considered Constantine its founder and the Holy Roman Empire reckoned him among the venerable figures of its tradition. In the later Byzantine state, it had become a great honor for an emperor to be hailed as a “new Constantine”. Ten emperors, including the last emperor of Byzantium, carried the name. Most Eastern Christian churches consider Constantine a saint (, Saint Constantine). In the Byzantine Church he was called isapostolos an equal of the Apostles. Ni airport is named Constantine the Great in honor of his birth in Naissus. In Roman mythology , Victoria was the personification/Goddess of victory. She is the Roman version of the Greek goddess Nike , and was associated with Bellona. She was adapted from the Sabine agricultural goddess Vacuna and had a temple on the Palatine Hill. Her name (in Latin) means victory. Unlike the Greek Nike, Victoria (Latin for “victory”) was a major part of Roman society. Multiple temples were erected in her honour. When her statue was removed in 382 AD by emperor Gratianus there was much anger in Rome. She was normally worshipped by triumphant generals returning from war. Also unlike the Greek Nike, who was known for success in athletic games such as chariot races, Victoria was a symbol of victory over death and determined who would be successful during war. Appearing on Roman coins, jewelry, architecture, and other arts, Victoria is often seen with or in a chariot. An example of this is her place upon the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin, Germany. Constantinople was founded by the Roman emperor Constantine I on the site of an already existing city, Byzantium , settled in the early days of Greek colonial expansion, probably around 671-662 BC. The site lay astride the land route from Europe to Asia and the seaway from the Black Sea to the Mediterranean , and had in the Golden Horn an excellent and spacious harbour. Emperor Constantine II presents a representation of the city of Constantinople as tribute to an enthroned Mary and Christ Child in this church mosaic. Constantine had altogether more colorful plans. Having restored the unity of the Empire, and being in course of major governmental reforms as well as of sponsoring the consolidation of the Christian church, he was well aware that Rome was an unsatisfactory capital. Rome was too far from the frontiers, and hence from the armies and the Imperial courts, and it offered an undesirable playground for disaffected politicians. Yet it had been the capital of the state for over a thousand years, and it might have seemed unthinkable to suggest that the capital be moved to a different location. Nevertheless, he identified the site of Byzantium as the right place: a place where an emperor could sit, readily defended, with easy access to the Danube or the Euphrates frontiers, his court supplied from the rich gardens and sophisticated workshops of Roman Asia, his treasuries filled by the wealthiest provinces of the Empire. Constantinople was built over six years, and consecrated on 11 May 330. Constantine divided the expanded city, like Rome, into 14 regions, and ornamented it with public works worthy of an imperial metropolis. Yet initially Constantine’s new Rome did not have all the dignities of old Rome. It possessed a proconsul , rather than an urban prefect. It had no praetors , tribunes quaestors. Although it did have senators, they held the title clarus , not clarissimus , like those of Rome. It also lacked the panoply of other administrative offices regulating the food supply, police, statues, temples, sewers, aqueducts or other public works. The new programme of building was carried out in great haste: columns, marbles, doors and tiles were taken wholesale from the temples of the Empire and moved to the new city. Similarly, many of the greatest works of Greek and Roman art were soon to be seen in its squares and streets. The Emperor stimulated private building by promising householders gifts of land from the Imperial estates in Asiana and Pontica , and on 18 May 332 he announced that, as in Rome, free distributions of food would be made to the citizens. At the time the amount is said to have been 80,000 rations a day, doled out from 117 distribution points around the city. Constantine laid out a new square at the centre of old Byzantium, naming it the Augustaeum. The new senate-house (or Curia) was housed in a basilica on the east side. On the south side of the great square was erected the Great Palace of the emperor with its imposing entrance, the Chalke , and its ceremonial suite known as the Palace of Daphne. Nearby was the vast Hippodrome for chariot-races, seating over 80,000 spectators, and the famed Baths of Zeuxippus. At the western entrance to the Augustaeum was the Milion , a vaulted monument from which distances were measured across the Eastern Roman Empire. From the Augustaeum led a great street, the Mese Greek: lit. “Middle [Street]“, lined with colonnades. As it descended the First Hill of the city and climbed the Second Hill, it passed on the left the Praetorium or law-court. Then it passed through the oval Forum of Constantine where there was a second Senate-house and a high column with a statue of Constantine himself in the guise of Helios , crowned with a halo of seven rays and looking towards the rising sun. From there the Mese passed on and through the Forum of Taurus and then the Forum of Bous, and finally up the Seventh Hill (or Xerolophus) and through to the Golden Gate in the Constantinian Wall. After the construction of the Theodosian Walls in the early 5th century, it would be extended to the new Golden Gate , reaching a total length of seven Roman miles. What is a certificate of authenticity and what guarantees do you give that the item is authentic? You will be quite happy with what you get with the COA; a professional presentation of the coin, with all of the relevant information and a picture of the coin you saw in the listing. Is there a number I can call you with questions about my order? When should I leave feedback? Once you receive your order, please leave a positive. Please don’t leave any negative feedbacks, as it happens many times that people rush to leave feedback before letting sufficient time for the order to arrive. The matter of fact is that any issues can be resolved, as reputation is most important to me. My goal is to provide superior products and quality of service. The item “Constantine I The Great founds Constantinople Ancient Roman Coin Nike i32506″ is in sale since Wednesday, June 26, 2013. This item is in the category “Coins & Paper Money\Coins\ Ancient\Roman\ Imperial (27 BC-476 AD)”. The seller is “highrating_lowprice” and is located in Rego Park, New York. This item can be shipped worldwide.
  • Ruler: Constantine I

Nov 8 2017

Hadrian 134AD HUGE Sestertius Ancient Roman Coin Fortuna Luck Wealth i30802

Hadrian 134AD HUGE Sestertius Ancient Roman Coin Fortuna Luck Wealth i30802

Hadrian 134AD HUGE Sestertius Ancient Roman Coin Fortuna Luck Wealth i30802

Item: i30802 Authentic Ancient Coin of. Hadrian – Roman Emperor: 117-138 A. Bronze Sestertius 30mm (20.91 grams) Rome mint: 134-138 A. Reference: RIC 759; C 763 HADRIANVSAVGCOSIIIPP – Laureate, draped bust right. FORTVNAAVG – Fortuna standing left, holding rudder on globe and cornucopia. Equivalent to the Greek goddess Tyche was the goddess of fortune and personification of luck in Roman religion. She might bring good luck or bad: she could be represented as veiled and blind, as in modern depictions of Justice , and came to represent life’s capriciousness. She was also a goddess of fate : as Atrox Fortuna , she claimed the young lives of the princeps Augustus’ grandsons Gaius and Lucius , prospective heirs to the Empire. Her father was said to be Jupiter and like him, she could also be bountiful. As Annonaria she protected grain supplies. June 11 was sacred to her: on June 24 she was given cult at the festival of Fors Fortuna. Fortuna’s Roman cult was variously attributed to Servius Tullius whose exceptional good fortune suggested their sexual intimacy and to Ancus Marcius. The two earliest temples mentioned in Roman Calendars were outside the city, on the right bank of the Tiber (in Italian Trastevere). The first temple dedicated to Fors was attributed to the Etruscan Servius Tullius, while the second is known to have been built in 293 BC as the fulfilment of a Roman promise made during later Etruscan wars. The date of dedication of her temples was 24 June, or Midsummers Day, when celebrants from Rome annually floated to the temples downstream from the city. After undisclosed rituals they then rowed back, garlanded and inebriated. Also Fortuna had a temple at the Forum Boarium. Here Fortuna was twinned with the cult of Mater Matuta (the goddesses shared a festival on 11 June), and the paired temples have been revealed in the excavation beside the church of Sant’Omobono : the cults are indeed archaic in date. Fortuna Primigenia of Praeneste was adopted by Romans at the end of 3rd BC in an important cult of Fortuna Publica Populi Romani (the Official Good Luck of the Roman People) on the Quirinalis outside the Porta Collina. No temple at Rome, however, rivalled the magnificence of the Praenestine sanctuary. Fortuna lightly balances the orb of sovereignty between thumb and finger in a Dutch painting of ca 1530 (Musée des Beaux-Arts de Strasbourg). Fortuna’s identity as personification of chance events was closely tied to virtus (strength of character). Public officials who lacked virtues invited ill-fortune on themselves and Rome: Sallust uses the infamous Catiline as illustration “Truly, when in the place of work, idleness, in place of the spirit of measure and equity , caprice and pride invade, fortune is changed just as with morality”. An oracle at the Temple of Fortuna Primigena in Praeneste used a form of divination in which a small boy picked out one of various futures that were written on oak rods. Cults to Fortuna in her many forms are attested throughout the Roman world. Dedications have been found to Fortuna Dubia (doubtful fortune), Fortuna Brevis (fickle or wayward fortune) and Fortuna Mala (bad fortune). She is found in a variety of domestic and personal contexts. During the early Empire, an amulet from the House of Menander in Pompeii links her to the Egyptian goddess Isis , as Isis-Fortuna. She is functionally related to the God Bonus Eventus. Who is often represented as her counterpart: both appear on amulets and intaglio engraved gems across the Roman world. Her name seems to derive from Vortumna (she who revolves the year). The earliest reference to the Wheel of Fortune , emblematic of the endless changes in life between prosperity and disaster, is from 55 BC. In Seneca’s tragedy Agamemnon , a chorus addresses Fortuna in terms that would remain almost proverbial, and in a high heroic ranting mode that Renaissance writers would emulate. O Fortune, who dost bestow the thrones high boon with mocking hand, in dangerous and doubtful state thou settest the too exalted. Never have sceptres obtained calm peace or certain tenure; care on care weighs them down, and ever do fresh storms vex their souls. Great kingdoms sink of their own weight, and Fortune gives way neath the burden of herself. Sails swollen with favouring breezes fear blasts too strongly theirs; the tower which rears its head to the very clouds is beaten by rainy Auster…. Whatever Fortune has raised on high, she lifts but to bring low. Modest estate has longer life; then happy he whoeer, content with the common lot, with safe breeze hugs the shore, and, fearing to trust his skiff to the wider sea, with unambitious oar keeps close to land. Ovid’s description is typical of Roman representations: in a letter from exile. He reflects ruefully on the goddess who admits by her unsteady wheel her own fickleness; she always has its apex beneath her swaying foot. Fortuna did not disappear from the popular imagination with the ascendancy of Christianity by any means. Saint Augustine took a stand against her continuing presence, in the City of God : How, therefore, is she good, who without discernment comes to both the good and to the bad? Let the bad worship her… In the 6th century, the Consolation of Philosophy , by statesman and philosopher Boethius , written while he faced execution, reflected the Christian theology of casus , that the apparently random and often ruinous turns of Fortune’s Wheel are in fact both inevitable and providential, that even the most coincidental events are part of God’s hidden plan which one should not resist or try to change. Fortuna, then, was a servant of God. And events, individual decisions, the influence of the stars were all merely vehicles of Divine Will. In succeeding generations Boethius’ Consolation was required reading for scholars and students. Fortune crept back in to popular acceptance, with a new iconographic trait, “two-faced Fortune”, Fortuna bifrons ; such depictions continue into the 15th century. Albrecht Dürer’s engraving of Fortuna , ca 1502. The ubiquitous image of the Wheel of Fortune found throughout the Middle Ages and beyond was a direct legacy of the second book of Boethius’s Consolation. The Wheel appears in many renditions from tiny miniatures in manuscripts to huge stained glass windows in cathedrals, such as at Amiens. Lady Fortune is usually represented as larger than life to underscore her importance. The wheel characteristically has four shelves, or stages of life, with four human figures, usually labeled on the left regnabo (I shall reign), on the top regno (I reign) and is usually crowned, descending on the right regnavi (I have reigned) and the lowly figure on the bottom is marked sum sine regno (I have no kingdom). Medieval representations of Fortune emphasize her duality and instability, such as two faces side by side like Janus ; one face smiling the other frowning; half the face white the other black; she may be blindfolded but without scales, blind to justice. The cornucopia is where plenty flows from, the Helmsman’s rudder steers fate, the globe symbolizes chance (who gets good or bad luck), and the wheel symbolizes that luck, good or bad, never lasts. Fortune would have many influences in cultural works throughout the Middle Ages. In Le Roman de la Rose , Fortune frustrates the hopes of a lover who has been helped by a personified character “Reason”. In Dante’s Inferno vii. 67-96 Virgil explains the nature of Fortune, both a devil and a ministering angel, subservient to God. Boccaccio’s De Casibus Virorum Illustrium (“The Fortunes of Famous Men”), used by John Lydgate to compose his Fall of Princes , tells of many where the turn of Fortune’s wheel brought those most high to disaster, and Boccaccio essay De remedii dell’una e dell’altra Fortuna , depends upon Boethius for the double nature of Fortuna. Fortune makes her appearance in Carmina Burana (see image). The Christianized Lady Fortune is not autonomous: illustrations for Boccaccio’s Remedii show Fortuna enthroned in a triumphal car with reins that lead to heaven. And appears in chapter 25 of Machiavelli’s The Prince , in which he says Fortune only rules one half of men’s fate, the other half being of their own will. Machiavelli reminds the reader that Fortune is a woman, that she favours a strong, or even violent hand, and that she favours the more aggressive and bold young man than a timid elder. Even Shakespeare was no stranger to Lady Fortune. When in disgrace with Fortune and men’s eyes. I all alone beweep my outcast state… Pars Fortuna in Astrology. In Astrology the term Pars Fortuna represents a mathematical point in the zodiac derived by the longitudinal positions of the Sun , Moon and Ascendant (Rising sign) in the birth chart of an individual. It represents an especially beneficial point in the horoscopic chart. In Arabic Astrology , this point is called Arabian Parts. The procedure followed for fixing ones Pars Fortuna in ancient and traditional astrology depended on the time of birth, viz. During daylight or night time (whether the Sun was above or below the horizon). In modern western astrology the day time formula only was used for many years, but with more knowledge of ancient astrology, the two calculation methods are now often used. The formula for calculating the day time Part of Fortune (PF) is (using the 360 degree positions for each point). PF = Ascendant + Moon – Sun. The formula for the night-time Part of Fortune is PF = Ascendant + Sun – Moon. Each calculation method results in a different zodiac position for the Part of Fortune. Al Biruni (973 1048), an 11th-century mathematician, astronomer and scholar, who was the greatest proponent of this system of prediction, listed a total of 97 Arabic Parts, which were widely used for astrological consultations. Paul Vachier has prepared an Arabic Parts Calculator for all the Arabic Parts. Publius Aelius Hadrianus (as emperor Imperator Caesar Divi Traiani filius Traianus Hadrianus Augustus , and Divus Hadrianus after his apotheosis , known as Hadrian in English ; 24 January 76 10 July 138) was emperor of Rome from AD 117 to 138, as well as a Stoic and Epicurean philosopher. A member of the gens Aelia , Hadrian was the third of the so-called Five Good Emperors. Hadrian was born Publius Aelius Hadrianus in Italica or, less probably, in Rome , from a well-established family which had originated in Picenum in Italy and had subsequently settled in Italica , Hispania Baetica (the republican Hispania Ulterior), near the present day location of Seville, Spain. His predecessor Trajan was a maternal cousin of Hadrian’s father. Trajan never officially designated a successor, but, according to his wife, Pompeia Plotina , Trajan named Hadrian emperor immediately before his death. Trajan’s wife was well-disposed toward Hadrian: Hadrian may well have owed his succession to her. Hadrian’s presumed indebtedness to Plotina was widely regarded as the reason for Hadrian’s succession. However, there is evidence that he accomplished his succession on his own governing and leadership merits while Trajan was still alive. For example, between the years AD 100108 Trajan gave several public examples of his personal favour towards Hadrian, such as betrothing him to his grandniece, Vibia Sabina , designating him quaestor Imperatoris , comes Augusti , giving him Nerva’s diamond “as hope of succession”, proposing him for consul suffectus , and other gifts and distinctions. The young Hadrian was Trajan’s only direct male family/marriage/bloodline. The support of Plotina and of L. Licinius Sura (died in AD 108) were nonetheless extremely important for Hadrian, already in this early epoch. Although it was an accepted part of Hadrian’s personal history that Hadrian was born in Italica located in the province called Hispania Baetica (the southernmost Roman province in the Iberian Peninsula , comprising modern Spain and Portugal), his biography in Augustan History states that he was born in Rome on 24 January 76 of a family originally Italian, but Hispanian for many generations. However, this may be a ruse to make Hadrian look like a person from Rome instead of a person hailing from the provinces. His father was the Hispano-Roman Publius Aelius Hadrianus Afer , who as a senator of praetorian rank would spend much of his time in Rome. Hadrians forefathers came from Hadria, modern Atri , an ancient town of Picenum in Italy, but the family had settled in Italica in Hispania Baetica soon after its founding by Scipio Africanus. Afer was a paternal cousin of the future Emperor Trajan. His mother was Domitia Paulina who came from Gades (Cádiz). Paulina was a daughter of a distinguished Hispano-Roman Senatorial family. Hadrians elder sister and only sibling was Aelia Domitia Paulina , married with the triple consul Lucius Julius Ursus Servianus , his niece was Julia Serviana Paulina and his great-nephew was Gnaeus Pedanius Fuscus Salinator, from Barcino. His parents died in 86 when Hadrian was ten, and the boy then became a ward of both Trajan and Publius Acilius Attianus (who was later Trajans Praetorian Prefect). Hadrian was schooled in various subjects particular to young aristocrats of the day, and was so fond of learning Greek literature that he was nicknamed Graeculus (“Greekling”). Hadrian visited Italica when (or never left it until) he was 14, when he was recalled by Trajan who thereafter looked after his development. His first military service was as a tribune of the Adiutrix Legio II. Later, he was to be transferred to the Minervia Legio I in Germany. When Nerva died in 98, Hadrian rushed to inform Trajan personally. He later became legate of a legion in Upper Pannonia and eventually governor of said province. He was also archon in Athens for a brief time, and was elected an Athenian citizen. His career before becoming emperor follows: decemvir stlitibus iudicandis – sevir turmae equitum Romanorum – praefectus Urbi feriarum Latinarum – tribunus militum legionis II Adiutricis Piae Fidelis (95, in Pannonia Inferior) – tribunus militum legionis V Macedonicae (96, in Moesia Inferior) – tribunus militum legionis XXII Primigeniae Piae Fidelis (97, in Germania Superior) – quaestor (101) – ab actis senatus – tribunus plebis (105) – praetor (106) – legatus legionis I Minerviae Piae Fidelis (106, in Germania Inferior) – legatus Augusti pro praetore Pannoniae Inferioris (107) – consul suffectus (108) – septemvir epulonum (before 112) – sodalis Augustalis (before 112) – archon Athenis (112/13) – legatus Syriae (117). Hadrian was active in the wars against the Dacians (as legate of the Macedonica V) and reputedly won awards from Trajan for his successes. Due to an absence of military action in his reign, Hadrian’s military skill is not well attested; however, his keen interest and knowledge of the army and his demonstrated skill of administration show possible strategic talent. Hadrian joined Trajan’s expedition against Parthia as a legate on Trajans staff. Neither during the initial victorious phase, nor during the second phase of the war when rebellion swept Mesopotamia did Hadrian do anything of note. However when the governor of Syria had to be sent to sort out renewed troubles in Dacia, Hadrian was appointed as a replacement, giving him an independent command. Trajan, seriously ill by that time, decided to return to Rome while Hadrian remained in Syria to guard the Roman rear. Trajan only got as far as Selinus before he became too ill to go further. While Hadrian may have been the obvious choice as successor, he had never been adopted as Trajan’s heir. As Trajan lay dying, nursed by his wife, Plotina (a supporter of Hadrian), he at last adopted Hadrian as heir. Since the document was signed by Plotina, it has been suggested that Trajan may have already been dead. The Roman empire in 125 AD, under the rule of Hadrian. Castel Sant’Angelo , the ancient Hadrian Mausoleum. This famous statue of Hadrian in Greek dress was revealed in 2008 to have been forged in the Victorian era by cobbling together a head of Hadrian and an unknown body. For years the statue had been used by historians as proof of Hadrian’s love of Hellenic culture. Hadrian quickly secured the support of the legions one potential opponent, Lusius Quietus , was instantly dismissed. The Senate’s endorsement followed when possibly falsified papers of adoption from Trajan were presented (although he had been the ward of Trajan). The rumor of a falsified document of adoption carried little weight Hadrian’s legitimacy arose from the endorsement of the Senate and the Syrian armies. Hadrian did not at first go to Rome he was busy sorting out the East and suppressing the Jewish revolt that had broken out under Trajan, then moving on to sort out the Danube frontier. Instead, Attianus, Hadrian’s former guardian, was put in charge in Rome. There he “discovered” a plot involving four leading Senators including Lusius Quietus and demanded of the Senate their deaths. There was no question of a trial they were hunted down and killed out of hand. Because Hadrian was not in Rome at the time, he was able to claim that Attianus had acted on his own initiative. According to Elizabeth Speller the real reason for their deaths was that they were Trajan’s men. Hadrian and the military. Despite his own great stature as a military administrator, Hadrian’s reign was marked by a general lack of major military conflicts, apart from the Second Roman-Jewish War. He surrendered Trajan’s conquests in Mesopotamia , considering them to be indefensible. There was almost a war with Parthia around 121, but the threat was averted when Hadrian succeeded in negotiating a peace. The peace policy was strengthened by the erection of permanent fortifications along the empire’s borders limites , sl. The most famous of these is the massive Hadrian’s Wall in Great Britain , and the Danube and Rhine borders were strengthened with a series of mostly wooden fortifications , forts, outposts and watchtowers , the latter specifically improving communications and local area security. To maintain morale and keep the troops from getting restive, Hadrian established intensive drill routines, and personally inspected the armies. Although his coins showed military images almost as often as peaceful ones, Hadrian’s policy was peace through strength, even threat. Cultural pursuits and patronage. Hadrian has been described, by Ronald Syme among others, as the most versatile of all the Roman Emperors. He also liked to display a knowledge of all intellectual and artistic fields. Above all, Hadrian patronized the arts: Hadrian’s Villa at Tibur (Tivoli) was the greatest Roman example of an Alexandrian garden, recreating a sacred landscape, lost in large part to the despoliation of the ruins by the Cardinal d’Este who had much of the marble removed to build Villa d’Este. In Rome , the Pantheon , originally built by Agrippa but destroyed by fire in 80, was rebuilt under Hadrian in the domed form it retains to this day. It is among the best preserved of Rome’s ancient buildings and was highly influential to many of the great architects of the Italian Renaissance and Baroque periods. From well before his reign, Hadrian displayed a keen interest in architecture, but it seems that his eagerness was not always well received. For example, Apollodorus of Damascus , famed architect of the Forum of Trajan , dismissed his designs. When Trajan , predecessor to Hadrian, consulted Apollodorus about an architectural problem, Hadrian interrupted to give advice, to which Apollodorus replied, Go away and draw your pumpkins. You know nothing about these problems. ” “Pumpkins refers to Hadrian’s drawings of domes like the Serapeum in his Villa. It is rumored that once Hadrian succeeded Trajan to become emperor, he had Apollodorus exiled and later put to death. It is very possible that this later story was a later attempt to defame his character, as Hadrian, though popular among a great many across the empire, was not universally admired, either in his lifetime or afterward. Hadrian wrote poetry in both Latin and Greek; one of the few surviving examples is a Latin poem he reportedly composed on his deathbed (see below). He also wrote an autobiography not, apparently, a work of great length or revelation, but designed to scotch various rumours or explain his various actions. The work is lost but was apparently used by the writer whether Marius Maximus or someone else on whom the Historia Augusta principally relied for its vita of Hadrian: at least, a number of statements in the vita have been identified (by Ronald Syme and others) as probably ultimately stemming from the autobiography. Hadrian was a passionate hunter, already from the time of his youth according to one source. In northwest Asia, he founded and dedicated a city to commemorate a she-bear he killed. It is documented that in Egypt he and his beloved Antinous killed a lion. In Rome, eight reliefs featuring Hadrian in different stages of hunting on a building that began as a monument celebrating a kill. Another of Hadrian’s contributions to “popular” culture was the beard, which symbolised his philhellenism. Except for Nero (also a great lover of Greek culture), all Roman emperors before Hadrian were clean shaven. Most of the emperors after Hadrian would be portrayed with beards. Their beards, however, were not worn out of an appreciation for Greek culture but because the beard had, thanks to Hadrian, become fashionable. Hadrian had a face covered in warts and scars, and this may have partially motivated Hadrian’s beard growth. Hadrian was a humanist and deeply Hellenophile in all his tastes. He favoured the doctrines of the philosophers Epictetus , Heliodorus and Favorinus , but was generally considered an Epicurean , as were some of his friends such as Caius Bruttius Praesens. At home he attended to social needs. Hadrian mitigated but did not abolish slavery, had the legal code humanized and forbade torture. He built libraries, aqueducts , baths and theaters. Hadrian is considered by many historians to have been wise and just: Schiller called him “the Empire’s first servant”, and British historian Edward Gibbon admired his “vast and active genius”, as well as his “equity and moderation”. In 1776, he stated that Hadrian’s epoch was part of the “happiest era of human history”. While visiting Greece in 126, Hadrian attempted to create a kind of provincial parliament to bind all the semi-autonomous former city states across all Greece and Ionia (in Asia Minor). This parliament, known as the Panhellenion , failed despite spirited efforts to instill cooperation among the Hellenes. Hadrian had a close relationship, widely reported to have been romantic, with a Greek youth, Antinous , whom he met in Bithynia in 124 when the boy was thirteen or fourteen. While touring Egypt in 130, Antinous mysteriously drowned in the Nile. Deeply saddened, Hadrian founded the Egyptian city of Antinopolis , and had Antinous deified – an unprecedented honour for one not of the ruling family. Hadrian died at his villa in Baiae. He was buried in a mausoleum on the western bank of the Tiber , in Rome , a building later transformed into a papal fortress, Castel Sant’Angelo. The dimensions of his mausoleum, in its original form, were deliberately designed to be slightly larger than the earlier Mausoleum of Augustus. According to Cassius Dio a gigantic equestrian statue was erected to Hadrian after his death. It was so large that the bulkiest man could walk through the eye of each horse, yet because of the extreme height of the foundation persons passing along on the ground below believe that the horses themselves as well as Hadrian are very small. The Stoic-Epicurean Emperor traveled broadly, inspecting and correcting the legions in the field. Even prior to becoming emperor, he had traveled abroad with the Roman military, giving him much experience in the matter. More than half his reign was spent outside of Italy. Other emperors often left Rome to simply go to war, returning soon after conflicts concluded. A previous emperor, Nero , once traveled through Greece and was condemned for his self indulgence. Hadrian, by contrast, traveled as a fundamental part of his governing, and made this clear to the Roman senate and the people. He was able to do this because at Rome he possessed a loyal supporter within the upper echelons of Roman society, a military veteran by the name of Marcius Turbo. Also, there are hints within certain sources that he also employed a secret police force, the frumentarii , to exert control and influence in case anything should go wrong while he journeyed abroad. Hadrian’s visits were marked by handouts which often contained instructions for the construction of new public buildings. Hadrian was willful of strengthening the Empire from within through improved infrastructure, as opposed to conquering or annexing perceived enemies. This was often the purpose of his journeys; commissioning new structures, projects and settlements. His almost evangelical belief in Greek culture strengthened his views: like many emperors before him, Hadrian’s will was almost always obeyed. His traveling court was large, including administrators and likely architects and builders. The burden on the areas he passed through were sometimes great. While his arrival usually brought some benefits it is possible that those who had to carry the burden were of different class to those who reaped the benefits. For example, huge amounts of provisions were requisitioned during his visit to Egypt , this suggests that the burden on the mainly subsistence farmers must have been intolerable, causing some measure of starvation and hardship. At the same time, as in later times all the way through the European Renaissance, kings were welcomed into their cities or lands, and the financial burden was completely on them, and only indirectly on the poorer class. Hadrian’s first tour came in 121 and was initially aimed at covering his back to allow himself the freedom to concern himself with his general cultural aims. He traveled north, towards Germania and inspected the Rhine-Danube frontier, allocating funds to improve the defenses. However it was a voyage to the Empire’s very frontiers that represented his perhaps most significant visit; upon hearing of a recent revolt, he journeyed to Britannia. Hadrian’s Wall (Vallum Hadriani), a fortification in Northern England (viewed from Vercovicium). Hadrian’s Gate , in Antalya, southern Turkey was built to honour Hadrian who visited the city in 130 CE. Prior to Hadrian’s arrival on Great Britain there had been a major rebellion in Britannia , spanning roughly two years (119121). It was here where in 122 he initiated the building of Hadrian’s Wall (the exact Latin name of which is unknown). The purpose of the wall is academically debated. In 1893, Haverfield stated categorically that the Wall was a means of military defence. This prevailing, early 20th century view was challenged by Collingwood. Since then, other points of view have been put forwards; the wall has been seen as a marker to the limits of Romanitas , as a monument to Hadrian to gain glory in lieu of military campaigns, as work to keep the Army busy and prevent mutiny and waste through boredom, or to safeguard the frontier province of Britannia, by preventing future small scale invasions and unwanted immigration from the northern country of Caledonia (now modern day Scotland). Caledonia was inhabited by tribes known to the Romans as Caledonians. Hadrian realized that the Caledonians would refuse to cohabitate with the Romans. He also was aware that although Caledonia was valuable, the harsh terrain and highlands made its conquest costly and unprofitable for the Empire at large. Thus, he decided instead on building a wall. Unlike the Germanic limes , built of wood palisades, the lack of suitable wood in the area required a stone construction; nevertheless, the Western third of the wall, from modern-day Carlisle to the River Irthing, was built of turf because of the lack of suitable building stone. This problem also led to the narrowing of the width of the wall, from the original 12 feet to 7, saving masonry. Hadrian is perhaps most famous for the construction of this wall whose ruins still span many miles and to date bear his name. In many ways it represents Hadrian’s will to improve and develop within the Empire , rather than waging wars and conquering. Under him, a shrine was erected in York to Britain as a Goddess, and coins were struck which introduced a female figure as the personification of Britain, labeled. By the end of 122 he had concluded his visit to Britannia, and from there headed south by sea to Mauretania. In 123, he arrived in Mauretania where he personally led a campaign against local rebels. However this visit was to be short, as reports came through that the Eastern nation of Parthia was again preparing for war, as a result Hadrian quickly headed eastwards. On his journey east it is known that at some point he visited Cyrene during which he personally made available funds for the training of the young men of well bred families for the Roman military. This might well have been a stop off during his journey East. Cyrene had already benefited from his generosity when he in 119 had provided funds for the rebuilding of public buildings destroyed in the recent Jewish revolt. When Hadrian arrived on the Euphrates , he characteristically solved the problem through a negotiated settlement with the Parthian king Osroes I. He then proceeded to check the Roman defenses before setting off West along the coast of the Black Sea. He probably spent the winter in Nicomedia , the main city of Bithynia. As Nicomedia had been hit by an earthquake only shortly prior to his stay, Hadrian was generous in providing funds for rebuilding. Thanks to his generosity he was acclaimed as the chief restorer of the province as a whole. It is more than possible that Hadrian visited Claudiopolis and there espied the beautiful Antinous , a young boy who was destined to become the emperor’s beloved. Sources say nothing about when Hadrian met Antinous, however, there are depictions of Antinous that shows him as a young man of 20 or so. As this was shortly before Antinous’s drowning in 130 Antinous would more likely have been a youth of 13 or 14. It is possible that Antinous may have been sent to Rome to be trained as page to serve the emperor and only gradually did he rise to the status of imperial favorite. After meeting Antinous, Hadrian traveled through Anatolia. The route he took is uncertain. Various incidents are described such as his founding of a city within Mysia, Hadrianutherae, after a successful boar hunt. (The building of the city was probably more than a mere whim lowly populated wooded areas such as the location of the new city were already ripe for development). Some historians dispute whether Hadrian did in fact commission the city’s construction at all. At about this time, plans to build a temple in Asia minor were written up. The new temple would be dedicated to Trajan and Hadrian and built with dazzling white marble. Temple of Zeus in Athens. The Pantheonn was rebuilt by Hadrian. The climax of this tour was the destination that the hellenophile Hadrian must all along have had in mind, Greece. He arrived in the autumn of 124 in time to participate in the Eleusinian Mysteries. By tradition at one stage in the ceremony the initiates were supposed to carry arms but this was waived to avoid any risk to the emperor among them. At the Athenians’ request he conducted a revision of their constitution among other things a new phyle (tribe) was added bearing his name. During the winter he toured the Peloponnese. His exact route is uncertain, however Pausanias reports of tell-tale signs, such as temples built by Hadrian and the statue of the emperor built by the grateful citizens of Epidaurus in thanks to their “restorer”. He was especially generous to Mantinea which supports the theory that Antinous was in fact already Hadrian’s lover because of the strong link between Mantinea and Antinous’s home in Bithynia. By March 125, Hadrian had reached Athens presiding over the festival of Dionysia. The building program that Hadrian initiated was substantial. Various rulers had done work on building the Temple of Olympian Zeus it was Hadrian who ensured that the job would be finished. He also initiated the construction of several public buildings on his own whim and even organized the building of an aqueduct. On his return to Italy, Hadrian made a detour to Sicily. Coins celebrate him as the restorer of the island though there is no record of what he did to earn this accolade. Back in Rome he was able to see for himself the completed work of rebuilding the Pantheon. Also completed by then was Hadrian’s villa nearby at Tibur a pleasant retreat by the Sabine Hills for whenever Rome became too much for him. At the beginning of March 127 Hadrian set off for a tour of Italy. Once again, historians are able to reconstruct his route by evidence of his hand-outs rather than the historical records. For instance, in that year he restored the Picentine earth goddess Cupra in the town of Cupra Maritima. At some unspecified time he improved the drainage of the Fucine lake. Less welcome than such largesse was his decision to divide Italy into 4 regions under imperial legates with consular rank. Being effectively reduced to the status of mere provinces did not go down well and this innovation did not long outlive Hadrian. Hadrian fell ill around this time, though the nature of his sickness is not known. Whatever the illness was, it did not stop him from setting off in the spring of 128 to visit Africa. His arrival began with the good omen of rain ending a drought. Along with his usual role as benefactor and restorer he found time to inspect the troops and his speech to the troops survives to this day. Greece, Asia and Egypt. In September 128 Hadrian again attended the Eleusinian mysteries. This time his visit to Greece seems to have concentrated on Athens and Sparta the two ancient rivals for dominance of Greece. Hadrian had played with the idea of focusing his Greek revival round Amphictyonic League based in Delphi but he by now had decided on something far grander. His new Panhellenion was going to be a council that would bring together Greek cities wherever they might be found. The meeting place was to be the new temple to Zeus in Athens. Having set in motion the preparations deciding whose claim to be a Greek city was genuine would in itself take time Hadrian set off for Ephesus. In October 130, while Hadrian and his entourage were sailing on the Nile , Antinous drowned, for unknown reasons, though accident, suicide, murder or religious sacrifice have all been postulated. The emperor was grief stricken. He ordered Antinous deified, and cities were named after the boy, medals struck with his effigy, and statues erected to him in all parts of the empire. Temples were built for his worship in Bithynia, Mantineia in Arcadia, and Athens, festivals celebrated in his honour and oracles delivered in his name. The city of Antinopolis or Antinoe was founded on the ruins of Besa where he died Cassius Dio, LIX. 11; Historia Augusta , Hadrian. Antinous also Antinoüs or Antinoös ; Ancient Greek. 111 before 30 October 130 was a Bithynian Greek youth and a favourite of the Roman emperor Hadrian. He was deified after his death, although his exact status in the Roman pantheon was uncertain. Thorsten Opper in Hadrian: Empire and Conflict notes: Hardly anything is known of Antinous’ life, and the fact that our sources get more detailed the later they are does not inspire confidence. At an irreducible minimum he was born to a Greek family in Bithynion – Claudiopolis , in the Roman province of Bithynia in what is now north-west Turkey , and joined the entourage of the emperor Hadrian at a young age, although nothing certain is known of how, when, or where he and Hadrian met. He is frequently described and depicted as a beautiful boy and youth. The relationship is believed to have been sexual. Antinous drowned in the Nile in October 130. The death was presented as an accident, “but it was believed at the time that Antinous had been sacrificed or had sacrificed himself, ” and Hadrian wept for him like a woman. Hadrian went through the process of deifying him soon afterwards, a process previously exclusively reserved for imperial family members rather than friends or lovers of non-Roman origin. Commemoration: the cult of Antinous. The grief of the emperor knew no bounds, causing the most extravagant veneration to be paid to Antinous’ memory. Cities were founded in his name, medals struck with his likeness, and cities throughout the east commissioned godlike images of the dead youth for their shrines and sanctuaries. Following the example of Alexander (who sought divine honours for his beloved general, Hephaestion , when he died) Hadrian had Antinous proclaimed a god. Temples were built for his worship in Bithynia, Mantineia in Arcadia , and Athens , festivals celebrated in his honour and oracles delivered in his name. The city of Antinopolis or Antinoe was founded on the site of Hir-wer where he died Dio Cassius lix. One of Hadrian’s attempts at extravagant remembrance failed, when the proposal to create a constellation of Antinous being lifted to heaven by an eagle (the constellation Aquila) failed of adoption. After deification , Antinous was associated with and depicted as the Ancient Egyptian god Osiris , associated with the rebirth of the Nile. Antinous was also depicted as the Roman Bacchus , a god related to fertility, cutting vine leaves. Antinous’s was the only non-imperial head ever to appear on the coinage. The “Lansdowne Antinous” was found at Hadrian’s Villa in 1769 (Fitzwilliam Museum , Cambridge). Worship, or at least acknowledgment, of the idealized Antinous was widespread, although mainly outside the city of Rome. As a result, Antinous is one of the best-preserved faces from the ancient world. Many busts, gems and coins represent Antinous as the ideal type of youthful beauty, often with the attributes of some special god. They include a colossal bust in the Vatican , a bust in the Louvre (the Antinous Mondragone), a bas-relief from the Villa Albani , a statue in the Capitoline museum (the so-called Capitoline Antinous , now accepted to be a portrayal of Hermes), another in Berlin , another in the Lateran and one in the Fitzwilliam Museum ; and many more may be seen in museums across Europe. There are also statues in many archaeological museums in Greece including the National Archaeological Museum in Athens, the archaeological museums of Patras, Chalkis and Delphi. Although these may well be idealised images, they demonstrate what all contemporary writers described as Antinous’s extraordinary beauty. Although many of the sculptures are instantly recognizable, some offer significant variation in terms of the suppleness and sensuality of the pose and features versus the rigidity and typical masculinity. In 1998 the remains of the monumental tomb of Antinous, or a temple to him, were discovered at Hadrian’s Villa. Obelisk of Antinous on the Pincio Hill in Rome. (Obelisco Pinciano, Piazzale del Pincio, Roma) Made of Aswan pink granite 9.24 m. High, mounted on a modern plinth and surmounted by an ornamental star: overall height 17.26 m. Commissioned by Hadrian and probably erected at the Antinoeion of his villa in Tivoli. Moved to Rome by Elagabalus (218-222) to decorate the spina of the Circus Varianus. Broken into three pieces, probably in the 6th century, it was found in the 16th century near the Porta Maggiore. Moved to the Palazzo Barberini , then moved to the Vatican by Pope Clement XIV ; finally erected on the Pincian by Pope Pius VII in 1822. The four sides of the obelisk are covered with reliefs and with hieroglyphs which, it cannot be doubted, Hadrian composed. The reference to Hadrians wife Sabina being alive shows that it dates from between Antinous death in 130 and Sabinas in 136/7. Hadrians movements subsequent to the founding of Antinopolis on October 30, 130 are obscure. See also: Bar Kokhba revolt. In 130, Hadrian visited the ruins of Jerusalem , in Judaea , left after the First Roman-Jewish War of 6673. He rebuilt the city, renaming it Aelia Capitolina after himself and Jupiter Capitolinus , the chief Roman deity. A new temple dedicated to the worship of Jupiter was built on the ruins of the old Jewish Second Temple , which had been destroyed in 70. In addition, Hadrian abolished circumcision , which was considered by Romans and Greeks as a form of bodily mutilation and hence “barbaric”. These anti-Jewish policies of Hadrian triggered in Judaea a massive Jewish uprising, led by Simon bar Kokhba and Akiba ben Joseph. Following the outbreak of the revolt, Hadrian called his general Sextus Julius Severus from Britain , and troops were brought from as far as the Danube. Roman losses were very heavy, and it is believed that an entire legion, the XXII Deiotariana was destroyed. Indeed, Roman losses were so heavy that Hadrian’s report to the Roman Senate omitted the customary salutation “I and the legions are well”. However, Hadrian’s army eventually put down the rebellion in 135, after three years of fighting. According to Cassius Dio , during the war 580,000 Jews were killed, 50 fortified towns and 985 villages razed. The final battle took place in Beitar , a fortified city 10 km. The city only fell after a lengthy siege, and Hadrian only allowed the Jews to bury their dead after a period of six days. According to the Babylonian Talmud , after the war Hadrian continued the persecution of Jews. He attempted to root out Judaism , which he saw as the cause of continuous rebellions, prohibited the Torah law, the Hebrew calendar and executed Judaic scholars (see Ten Martyrs). The sacred scroll was ceremonially burned on the Temple Mount. In an attempt to erase the memory of Judaea, he renamed the province Syria Palaestina (after the Philistines), and Jews were forbidden from entering its rededicated capital. When Jewish sources mention Hadrian it is always with the epitaph “may his bones be crushed” (or , the Aramaic equivalent), an expression never used even with respect to Vespasian or Titus who destroyed the Second Temple. Hadrian spent the final years of his life at Rome. In 134, he took an Imperial salutation or the end of the Second Jewish War (which was not actually concluded until the following year). In 136, he dedicated a new Temple of Venus and Roma on the former site of Nero’s Golden House. About this time, suffering from poor health, he turned to the problem of the succession. In 136 he adopted one of the ordinary consuls of that year, Lucius Ceionius Commodus, who took the name Lucius Aelius Caesar. He was both the stepson and son-in-law of Gaius Avidius Nigrinus, one of the “four consulars” executed in 118, but was himself in delicate health. Granted tribunician power and the governorship of Pannonia , Aelius Caesar held a further consulship in 137, but died on January 1, 138. Following the death of Aelius Caesar, Hadrian next adopted Titus Aurelius Fulvus Boionius Arrius Antoninus (the future emperor Antoninus Pius), who had served as one of the four imperial legates of Italy (a post created by Hadrian) and as proconsul of Asia. On 25 February 138 Antoninus received tribunician power and imperium. Moreover, to ensure the future of the dynasty, Hadrian required Antoninus to adopt both Lucius Ceionius Commodus (son of the deceased Aelius Caesar) and Marcus Annius Verus (who was the grandson of an influential senator of the same name who had been Hadrians close friend; Annius was already betrothed to Aelius Caesars daughter Ceionia Fabia). Hadrians precise intentions in this arrangement are debatable. Though the consensus is that he wanted Annius Verus (who would later become the Emperor Marcus Aurelius) to succeed Antoninus, it has also been argued that he actually intended Ceionius Commodus, the son of his own adopted son, to succeed, but was constrained to show favour simultaneously to Annius Verus because of his strong connections to the Hispano-Narbonensian nexus of senatorial families of which Hadrian himself was a part. It may well not have been Hadrian, but rather Antoninus Pius who was Annius Veruss uncle who advanced the latter to the principal position. The fact that Annius would divorce Ceionia Fabia and re-marry to Antoninus’ daughter Annia Faustina points in the same direction. When he eventually became Emperor, Marcus Aurelius would co-opt Ceionius Commodus as his co-Emperor (under the name of Lucius Verus) on his own initiative. The ancient sources present Hadrian’s last few years as marked by conflict and unhappiness. The adoption of Aelius Caesar proved unpopular, not least with Hadrian’s brother-in-law Lucius Julius Ursus Servianus and Servianus’ grandson Gnaeus Pedanius Fuscus Salinator. Servianus, though now far too old, had stood in line of succession at the beginning of the reign; Fuscus is said to have had designs on the imperial power for himself, and in 137 he may have attempted a coup in which his grandfather was implicated. Whatever the truth, Hadrian ordered that both be put to death. Servianus is reported to have prayed before his execution that Hadrian would “long for death but be unable to die”. The prayer was fulfilled; as Hadrian suffered from his final, protracted illness, he had to be prevented from suicide on several occasions. Hadrian died in 138 on the tenth day of July, in his villa at Baiae at age 62. The cause of death is believed to have been heart failure. Dio Cassius and the Historia Augusta record details of his failing health, and a study published in 1980 drew attention to classical sculptures of Hadrian that show he had diagonal earlobe creases a characteristic associated with coronary heart disease. Hadrian was buried first at Puteoli , near Baiae, on an estate which had once belonged to Cicero. Soon after, his remains were transferred to Rome and buried in the Gardens of Domitia, close by the almost-complete mausoleum. Upon the completion of the Tomb of Hadrian in Rome in 139 by his successor Antoninus Pius , his body was cremated, and his ashes were placed there together with those of his wife Vibia Sabina and his first adopted son, Lucius Aelius , who also died in 138. Antoninus also had him deified in 139 and given a temple on the Campus Martius. The sestertius , or sesterce , pl. Sestertii was an ancient Roman coin. During the Roman Republic it was a small, silver coin issued only on rare occasions. During the Roman Empire it was a large brass coin. Helmed Roma head right, IIS behind Dioscuri riding right, ROMA in linear frame below. The name sestertius (originally semis-tertius) means “2 ½”, the coin’s original value in asses , and is a combination of semis “half” and tertius “third”, that is, “the third half” (0 ½ being the first half and 1 ½ the second half) or “half the third” (two units plus half the third unit, or half way between the second unit and the third). Parallel constructions exist in Danish with halvanden (1 ½), halvtredje (2 ½) and halvfjerde (3 ½). The form sesterce , derived from French , was once used in preference to the Latin form, but is now considered old-fashioned. It is abbreviated as (originally IIS). Example of a detailed portrait of Hadrian 117 to 138. The sestertius was introduced c. 211 BC as a small silver coin valued at one-quarter of a denarius (and thus one hundredth of an aureus). A silver denarius was supposed to weigh about 4.5 grams, valued at ten grams, with the silver sestertius valued at two and one-half grams. In practice, the coins were usually underweight. When the denarius was retariffed to sixteen asses (due to the gradual reduction in the size of bronze denominations), the sestertius was accordingly revalued to four asses, still equal to one quarter of a denarius. It was produced sporadically, far less often than the denarius, through 44 BC. Hostilian under Trajan Decius 250 AD. In or about 23 BC, with the coinage reform of Augustus , the denomination of sestertius was introduced as the large brass denomination. Augustus tariffed the value of the sestertius as 1/100 Aureus. The sestertius was produced as the largest brass denomination until the late 3rd century AD. Most were struck in the mint of Rome but from AD 64 during the reign of Nero (AD 5468) and Vespasian (AD 6979), the mint of Lyon (Lugdunum), supplemented production. Lyon sestertii can be recognised by a small globe, or legend stop, beneath the bust. The brass sestertius typically weighs in the region of 25 to 28 grammes, is around 3234 mm in diameter and about 4 mm thick. The distinction between bronze and brass was important to the Romans. Their name for brass was orichalcum , a word sometimes also spelled aurichalcum (echoing the word for a gold coin, aureus), meaning’gold-copper’, because of its shiny, gold-like appearance when the coins were newly struck (see, for example Pliny the Elder in his Natural History Book 34.4). Orichalcum was considered, by weight, to be worth about double that of bronze. This is why the half-sestertius, the dupondius , was around the same size and weight as the bronze as, but was worth two asses. Sestertii continued to be struck until the late 3rd century, although there was a marked deterioration in the quality of the metal used and the striking even though portraiture remained strong. Later emperors increasingly relied on melting down older sestertii, a process which led to the zinc component being gradually lost as it burned off in the high temperatures needed to melt copper (Zinc melts at 419 °C, Copper at 1085 °C). The shortfall was made up with bronze and even lead. Later sestertii tend to be darker in appearance as a result and are made from more crudely prepared blanks (see the Hostilian coin on this page). The gradual impact of inflation caused by debasement of the silver currency meant that the purchasing power of the sestertius and smaller denominations like the dupondius and as was steadily reduced. In the 1st century AD, everyday small change was dominated by the dupondius and as, but in the 2nd century, as inflation bit, the sestertius became the dominant small change. In the 3rd century silver coinage contained less and less silver, and more and more copper or bronze. By the 260s and 270s the main unit was the double-denarius, the antoninianus , but by then these small coins were almost all bronze. Although these coins were theoretically worth eight sestertii, the average sestertius was worth far more in plain terms of the metal they contained. Some of the last sestertii were struck by Aurelian (270275 AD). During the end of its issue, when sestertii were reduced in size and quality, the double sestertius was issued first by Trajan Decius (249251 AD) and later in large quantity by the ruler of a breakaway regime in the West called Postumus (259268 AD), who often used worn old sestertii to overstrike his image and legends on. The double sestertius was distinguished from the sestertius by the radiate crown worn by the emperor, a device used to distinguish the dupondius from the as and the antoninianus from the denarius. Eventually, the inevitable happened. Many sestertii were withdrawn by the state and by forgers, to melt down to make the debased antoninianus, which made inflation worse. In the coinage reforms of the 4th century, the sestertius played no part and passed into history. Sestertius of Hadrian , dupondius of Antoninus Pius , and as of Marcus Aurelius. As a unit of account. The sestertius was also used as a standard unit of account, represented on inscriptions with the monogram HS. Large values were recorded in terms of sestertium milia , thousands of sestertii, with the milia often omitted and implied. The hyper-wealthy general and politician of the late Roman Republic, Crassus (who fought in the war to defeat Spartacus), was said by Pliny the Elder to have had’estates worth 200 million sesterces’. A loaf of bread cost roughly half a sestertius, and a sextarius (0.5 liter) of wine anywhere from less than half to more than 1 sestertius. One modius (6.67 kg) of wheat in 79 AD Pompeii cost 7 sestertii, of rye 3 sestertii, a bucket 2 sestertii, a tunic 15 sestertii, a donkey 500 sestertii. A writing tablet from Londinium (Roman London), dated to c. 75125 AD, records the sale of a Gallic slave girl called Fortunata for 600 denarii, equal to 2,400 sestertii, to a man called Vegetus. It is difficult to make any comparisons with modern coinage or prices, but for most of the 1st century AD the ordinary legionary was paid 900 sestertii per annum, rising to 1,200 under Domitian (81-96 AD), the equivalent of 3.3 sestertii per day. Half of this was deducted for living costs, leaving the soldier (if he was lucky enough actually to get paid) with about 1.65 sestertii per day. A sestertius of Nero , struck at Rome in 64 AD. The reverse depicts the emperor on horseback with a companion. The legend reads DECVRSIO,’a military exercise’. Sestertii are highly valued by numismatists , since their large size gave caelatores (engravers) a large area in which to produce detailed portraits and reverse types. The most celebrated are those produced for Nero (54-68 AD) between the years 64 and 68 AD, created by some of the most accomplished coin engravers in history. The brutally realistic portraits of this emperor, and the elegant reverse designs, greatly impressed and influenced the artists of the Renaissance. The series issued by Hadrian (117-138 AD), recording his travels around the Roman Empire, brilliantly depicts the Empire at its height, and included the first representation on a coin of the figure of Britannia ; it was revived by Charles II , and was a feature of United Kingdom coinage until the 2008 redesign. What is a certificate of authenticity and what guarantees do you give that the item is authentic? You will be quite happy with what you get with the COA; a professional presentation of the coin, with all of the relevant information and a picture of the coin you saw in the listing. Is there a number I can call you with questions about my order? When should I leave feedback? Once you receive your order, please leave a positive. Please don’t leave any negative feedbacks, as it happens many times that people rush to leave feedback before letting sufficient time for the order to arrive. The matter of fact is that any issues can be resolved, as reputation is most important to me. My goal is to provide superior products and quality of service. The item “Hadrian 134AD HUGE Sestertius Ancient Roman Coin Fortuna Luck Wealth i30802″ is in sale since Monday, December 03, 2012. This item is in the category “Coins & Paper Money\Coins\ Ancient\Roman\ Imperial (27 BC-476 AD)”. The seller is “highrating_lowprice” and is located in Rego Park, New York. This item can be shipped worldwide.
  • Ruler: Hadrian