Dec 11 2018

JULIUS CAESAR 48BC Ancient Silver Roman Coin VENUS TROY Rome HERO AU/UNC Sharp

JULIUS CAESAR 48BC Ancient Silver Roman Coin VENUS TROY Rome HERO AU/UNC Sharp

JULIUS CAESAR 48BC Ancient Silver Roman Coin VENUS TROY Rome HERO AU/UNC Sharp

JULIUS CAESAR 48BC Ancient Silver Roman Coin VENUS TROY Rome HERO AU/UNC Sharp

JULIUS CAESAR 48BC Ancient Silver Roman Coin VENUS TROY Rome HERO AU/UNC Sharp. The item “JULIUS CAESAR 48BC Ancient Silver Roman Coin VENUS TROY Rome HERO AU/UNC Sharp” is in sale since Monday, October 1, 2018. This item is in the category “Coins & Paper Money\Coins\ Ancient\Roman\ Republic (300 BC-27 BC)”. The seller is “nationalestatejewelers” and is located in East Brunswick, New Jersey. This item can be shipped to United States.
  • Composition: Silver
  • Denomination: Denarius
  • Culture: Roman
  • Grade: Ch AU
  • Certification: Uncertified

Dec 10 2018

Roman Emperor Caligula Authentic Ancient Rome Coin 925 Sterling Silver Necklace

Roman Emperor Caligula Authentic Ancient Rome Coin 925 Sterling Silver Necklace

Roman Emperor Caligula Authentic Ancient Rome Coin 925 Sterling Silver Necklace

Roman Emperor Caligula Authentic Ancient Rome Coin 925 Sterling Silver Necklace

Roman Emperor Caligula Authentic Ancient Rome Coin 925 Sterling Silver Necklace

Roman Emperor Caligula Authentic Ancient Rome Coin 925 Sterling Silver Necklace

You are purchasing an Authentic Ancient 1st Century AD, 1900+ years old! Roman Empire AE Coin of Caligula, set in a 29 mm 925 solid sterling silver bezel. 925 solid sterling silver 21 popcorn chain included. Bare head left C CAESAR AVG GERMANICVS PON M TR POT. Vesta seated left, holding patera and sceptre VESTA S C. The coin minted in Rome, circa 37 – 41 A. Please take a look at the photos for details. Thank you for looking. Properly Gaius Julius Caesar Augustus Germanicus (31 August AD 12 24 January AD 41) was Roman Emperor in AD 3741. Born Gaius Julius Caesar Germanicus (not to be confused with Julius Caesar), Caligula was a member of the house of rulers conventionally known as the Julio-Claudian dynasty. Caligula’s biological father was Germanicus, and he was the great-nephew and adopted son of Emperor Tiberius. The young Gaius earned the nickname “Caligula” (meaning “little soldier’s boot”, the diminutive form of caliga, hob-nailed military boot) from his father’s soldiers while accompanying him during his campaigns in Germania. The conflict eventually led to the destruction of her family, with Caligula as the sole male survivor. Untouched by the deadly intrigues, Caligula accepted the invitation to join the Emperor in AD 31 on the island of Capri, where Tiberius had withdrawn five years earlier. With the death of Tiberius in AD 37, Caligula succeeded his grand uncle and adoptive grandfather as emperor. There are few surviving sources about the reign of Emperor Caligula, although he is described as a noble and moderate ruler during the first six months of his reign. After this, the sources focus upon his cruelty, sadism, extravagance, and sexual perversity, presenting him as an insane tyrant. While the reliability of these sources is questionable, it is known that during his brief reign, Caligula worked to increase the unconstrained personal power of the emperor, as opposed to countervailing powers within the principate. He directed much of his attention to ambitious construction projects and luxurious dwellings for himself, and initiated the construction of two aqueducts in Rome: the Aqua Claudia and the Anio Novus. During his reign, the empire annexed the Kingdom of Mauretania as a province. In early AD 41, Caligula was assassinated as a result of a conspiracy by officers of the Praetorian Guard, senators, and courtiers. The conspirators’ attempt to use the opportunity to restore the Roman Republic was thwarted: on the day of the assassination of Caligula, the Praetorian Guard declared Caligula’s uncle, Claudius, the next Roman emperor. The item “Roman Emperor Caligula Authentic Ancient Rome Coin 925 Sterling Silver Necklace” is in sale since Thursday, April 20, 2017. This item is in the category “Coins & Paper Money\Coins\ Ancient\Roman\ Imperial (27 BC-476 AD)”. The seller is “sport_authority” and is located in Orlando, Florida. This item can be shipped worldwide.

Dec 8 2018

VESPASIAN 69AD Rome Authentic Ancient Silver Roman JUDAEA CAPTA Coin NGC AU

VESPASIAN 69AD Rome Authentic Ancient Silver Roman JUDAEA CAPTA Coin NGC AU

VESPASIAN 69AD Rome Authentic Ancient Silver Roman JUDAEA CAPTA Coin NGC AU

VESPASIAN 69AD Rome Authentic Ancient Silver Roman JUDAEA CAPTA Coin NGC AU

VESPASIAN 69AD Rome Authentic Ancient Silver Roman JUDAEA CAPTA Coin NGC AU

VESPASIAN 69AD Rome Authentic Ancient Silver Roman JUDAEA CAPTA Coin NGC AU

VESPASIAN 69AD Rome Authentic Ancient Silver Roman JUDAEA CAPTA Coin NGC AU

[6620] Vespasian – Roman Emperor: 69-79 A. “Judaea Capta” Silver Denarius 20mm (3.40 grams) Rome mint: 69-70 A. Reference: RIC 2; Cohen 226; BN 23; B. 35; Hendin 759 (3rd Edition); Hendin 1464 (5th Edition) Certification: NGC Ancients AU Strike: 5/5 Surface: 4/5 4682093-003 Laureate head of Vespasian right; around IMP CAESAR VESPASIANVS AVG. Jewess seated right mourning below right of trophy; in exergue, IVDAEA. Provided with certificate of authenticity. CERTIFIED AUTHENTIC by Sergey Nechayev, PhD – Numismatic Expert. Judaea Capta coins (also spelled Judea Capta) were a series of commemorative coins originally issued by the Roman Emperor Vespasian to celebrate the capture of Judaea and the destruction of the Jewish Temple in Jerusalem by his son Titus in 70 AD during the First Jewish Revolt. There are several variants of the coinage. The reverse of the coins shows a Jewish female (representing Judaea) seated right in an attitude of mourning at the base of a palm tree, with either a captive Jewish male standing right, with his hands bound behind his back, or the standing figure of the victorious emperor, or the goddess Victory, with a trophy of weapons, shields, and helmets to the left. The female figure may reflect the prophecy of Isaiah 3:8, 25-26: For Jerusalem is ruined, and Judah is fallen… Thy men shall fall by the sword and thy mighty in the war. And her gates shall lament and mourn, and she being desolate shall sit upon the ground. The Judaea Capta coins were struck for 25 years under Vespasian and his two sons who succeeded him as Emperor – Titus and Domitian. These commemorative coins were issued in bronze, silver and gold by mints in Rome, throughout the Roman Empire, and in Judaea itself. They were issued in every denomination, and at least 48 different types are known. Only bronze’Judaea Capta’ coins were struck in Caesarea, in the defeated Roman province of Judea. These coins are much cruder than the Roman issues, and the inscriptions are in Greek rather than Latin. The designs feature the Goddess Nike writing on a shield, Minerva with a spear, shield, trophy and palm tree, etc. Most such coins were issued during the reign of the Emperor Domitian (81-96 AD). Unusually, a’Judaea Capta’ coin was also minted by the Jewish ruler Agrippa II, the great-grandson of Herod the Great. Brought up in Rome at the court of Claudius, Agrippa was thoroughly Romanised and was a close friend of Titus, whom he supported throughout the First Jewish Revolt. His bronze coin was minted at Tiberias and shows a portrait of Titus on the obverse with the Greek inscription”, while the reverse depicted the goddess Nike advancing right holding a wreath and palm branch over her shoulder, with a star in upper right field and the inscription’ETO – KS BA AGRI-PPA’. Vespasian – Roman Emperor : 69-79 A. Sole Reign (with Titus and Domitian as Caesars) 71-79 A. Sole Reign (with Titus as Imperator and Domitian as Caesar). Titus Flavius Vespasianus , known in English as Vespasian (November 17 9AD – June 23 79AD), was a Roman Emperor who reigned from 69 AD until his death in 79 AD. Vespasian was the founder of the short-lived Flavian dynasty, which ruled the Roman Empire between 69 AD and 96 AD He was succeeded by his sons Titus (79-81) and Domitian (81-96). Vespasian descended from a family of equestrians which rose into the senatorial rank under the emperors of the Julio-Claudian dynasty. Although he attained the standard succession of public offices, holding the consulship in 51, Vespasian became more reputed as a successful military commander, partaking in the Roman invasion of Britain in 43, and subjugating the Judaea province during the Jewish rebellion of 66. While Vespasian was preparing to besiege the city of Jerusalem during the latter campaign, emperor Nero committed suicide, plunging the Roman Empire into a year of civil war known as the Year of the Four Emperors. After Galba and Otho perished in quick succession, Vitellius became emperor in mid 69. In response, the armies in Egypt and Judaea themselves declared Vespasian emperor on July 1. On December 20, Vitellius was defeated, and the following day, Vespasian was declared emperor by the Roman Senate. Little factual information survives about Vespasian’s government during the ten years he was emperor. His reign is best known for financial reforms following the demise of the Julio-Claudian dynasty, the successful campaign against Judaea, and several ambitious construction projects such as the Colosseum. Upon his death on June 23, 79, he was succeeded by his eldest son Titus. The item “VESPASIAN 69AD Rome Authentic Ancient Silver Roman JUDAEA CAPTA Coin NGC AU” is in sale since Thursday, November 15, 2018. This item is in the category “Coins & Paper Money\Coins\ Ancient\Roman\ Republic (300 BC-27 BC)”. The seller is “victoram” and is located in Forest Hills, New York. This item can be shipped worldwide.
  • Composition: Silver
  • Certification: NGC
  • Denomination: Denarius
  • Certification Number: 4682093-003
  • Grade: AU

Dec 6 2018

AEMILIAN Genuine 253AD Rome RARE Authentic Ancient Silver Roman Coin MARS i65198

AEMILIAN Genuine 253AD Rome RARE Authentic Ancient Silver Roman Coin MARS i65198

AEMILIAN Genuine 253AD Rome RARE Authentic Ancient Silver Roman Coin MARS i65198

AEMILIAN Genuine 253AD Rome RARE Authentic Ancient Silver Roman Coin MARS i65198

Item: i65198 Authentic Ancient Coin of. Silver Antoninianus 21mm (3.96 grams) Rome mint, struck 253 A. Reference: RIC 6; RSC 25; Cohen 25 IMP AEMILIANVS PIVS FEL AVG, Radiate draped and cuirassed bust right. MARTI PROPVGT, Mars standing left, leaning on shield and holding reversed spear. Mars was the Roman god of war, the son of Juno and Jupiter, husband of Bellona, and the lover of Venus. He was the most prominent of the military gods that were worshipped by the Roman legions. The martial Romans considered him second in importance only to Jupiter (their main god). His festivals were held in March (named for him) and October. As the word Mars has no Indo-European derivation, it is most likely the Latinised form of the agricultural Etruscan god Maris. Initially Mars was a Roman god of fertility and vegetation and a protector of cattle, fields and boundaries and farmers. In the second century BC, the conservative Cato the Elder advised “For your cattle, for them to be healthy, make this sacrifice to Mars Silvanus you must make this sacrifice each year”. Mars later became associated with battle as the growing Roman Empire began to expand, and he came to be identified with the Greek god Ares. Unlike his Greek counterpart, Mars was generally revered and rivaled Jupiter as the most honoured god. He was also the tutelary god of the city of Rome. As he was regarded as the legendary father of Rome’s founder, Romulus, it was believed that all Romans were descendants of Mars. Marcus Aemilius Aemilianus Girba , c. 207/213 – Spoletium, 253, commonly known as Aemilian , was Roman Emperor for three months in 253. Commander of the Moesian troops, he obtained an important victory against the invading Goths and was, for this reason, acclaimed emperor by his army. He then moved quickly to Italy, where he defeated emperor Trebonianus Gallus, only to be killed by his own men when another general, Valerian, proclaimed himself emperor and moved against Aemilian with a larger army. Origins and military career. Aemilian was born in the Roman province of Africa. According to the 4th century source Epitome de Caesaribus , he was born at Girba (modern Djerba, an island off the coast of Tunisia) and was a Moor; a reference in the same source hints that he was born around 207. The 12th century historian Joannes Zonaras, who calls him a Libyan (that is, coming from western Egypt-eastern Libya) rather than a Moor, and another chronicle of the 13th century hold that he was forty at the time of his death in 253. As regards his lineage, there are two versions, both exaggerated: while Eutropius and his translator Paeanius probably defamate a failed usurper when they tell that he was from an insignificant family, John of Antioch may refer bits of Aemilian’s propaganda when he tells that the usurper used his ancestry to take the power. Aemilian married Cornelia Supera, a woman of African origin; the year of their marriage is unknown, but being both from the same place, it is possible they married before Aemilian left Africa. During the reign of Trebonianus Gallus and his son Volusianus (251-253), Aemilian was sent to the Balkans to command an army. His primary responsibility was to assure peace along the Danube frontier, which had been subject to several attacks by the Goths led by king Cniva. Gallus secured the throne after the death of emperor Decius at the hands of Cniva in the battle of Abrittus (251), and later had to manage an outbreak of plague that devastated Rome. He was not popular with the army, mainly due to humiliating treaties signed in 251 with the Goths and King Shapur I of Persia who attacked Syria. According to John of Antioch, upon his appointment to the Moesian command, Aemilian was already envious of Gallus and plotted treachery against him. He was also an opponent of the Roman Senate; and his seditious plans are confirmed by Jerome and Jordanes. Victory against the Goths, overthrow of Gallus, short rule and death of Aemilian. Aemilian had command of the army assigned to defend the area. However, the recent defeat at the battle of Abrittus put his troops on edge. Aemilian exhorted them, reminding them of Roman honour (according to Zosimus) and promising tribute from the Goths (according to Zonaras). The Romans took the Goths by surprise, killing most of them, followed by an invasion of their territory which resulted in booty and the liberation of prisoners. The Roman soldiers, gathered by Aemilian, acclaimed him Emperor. Jordanes claims, however, that Aemilian’s troops plundered Roman territory, rather than keep the tribute of the Goths. With his few men, Aemilian could hardly wait for the legitimate emperor Gallus to gather his forces, so he left his province unguarded and, with all his men, moved quickly towards Rome, to meet his opponent before he could receive reinforcements. While Aemilian descended upon Rome along the Flaminian Way, Trebonianus Gallus and his son and colleague Volusianus had him proclaimed “enemy of the State” by the Roman senate, then exited Rome to meet the usurper; this strategy is a clue that Aemilian’s army was smaller than theirs, as it is probable that they did not expect the reinforcements to come in time, but trusted their larger army to win the clash. The two armies met at Interamna Nahars (modern Terni), at the southern end of the eastern branch of the Flaminia, and Aemilian won the battle; Gallus and Volusianus fled with few followers towards north, probably to gather time before the arrival of the reinforcements, but at Forum Flaminii (modern San Giovanni Profiamma), on the western branch of Flaminia, they were killed by some of their own guards, who thought that their betrayal could earn them a reward. Aemilian moved towards Rome; here the Roman senate, after a short opposition, decided to recognize him emperor. According to some sources, after his recognition Aemilian wrote to the Senate, promising to fight for the Empire in Thrace and against Persia, and to relinquish his power to the Senate, of which he considered himself a general. Aemilian received the titles of Pius , Felix and Pater Patriae , the tribunicia potestas , and was elevated to the rank of pontifex maximus ; however, he was not elevated to consulate (possibly a hint of his non-senatorial birth). His coinage shows that his propaganda was centred around his capability as military commander; he had been able to defeat the Goths while nobody even believed this possible, and thus he was the right man for the job of restoring the power of the Roman Empire. However, Valerian, the governor of the Rhine provinces, was on his way south with an army, which according to Zosimus, had been called in as a reinforcement by Gallus. Emperor Aemilian’s men, fearful of a civil war and Valerian’s larger force, mutinied. Aemilian was killed by them at Spoletium or the Sanguinarium bridge, between Oriculum and Narnia (half way between Spoletium and Rome), and recognised Valerian as the new emperor. After his death, which happened between late July and mid-September, a damnatio memoriae against Aemilian was declared. It is possible that the usurper Silbannacus was an officer left by Aemilian in Rome before moving against Valerian, who later tried to become emperor but then was killed. The troubled administration of this emperor was perhaps best summed up by Eutropius. Aemilianus came from an extremely insignificant family, his reign was even more insignificant, and he was slain in the third month. World-renowned expert numismatist, enthusiast, author and dealer in authentic ancient Greek, ancient Roman, ancient Byzantine, world coins & more. Ilya Zlobin is an independent individual who has a passion for coin collecting, research and understanding the importance of the historical context and significance all coins and objects represent. Send me a message about this and I can update your invoice should you want this method. Getting your order to you, quickly and securely is a top priority and is taken seriously here. Great care is taken in packaging and mailing every item securely and quickly. What is a certificate of authenticity and what guarantees do you give that the item is authentic? You will be very 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. Additionally, the coin is inside it’s own protective coin flip (holder), with a 2×2 inch description of the coin matching the individual number on the COA. Whether your goal is to collect or give the item as a gift, coins presented like this could be more prized and valued higher than items that were not given such care and attention to. When should I leave feedback? Please don’t leave any negative feedbacks, as it happens sometimes that people rush to leave feedback before letting sufficient time for their 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. How and where do I learn more about collecting ancient coins? Visit the Guide on How to Use My Store. For on an overview about using my store, with additional information and links to all other parts of my store which may include educational information on topics you are looking for. The item “AEMILIAN Genuine 253AD Rome RARE Authentic Ancient Silver Roman Coin MARS i65198″ is in sale since Saturday, November 4, 2017. 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: Aemilian
  • Ancient Coins: Roman Coins
  • Coin Type: Ancient Roman
  • Denomination: Antoninianus
  • Composition: Silver
  • Material: Silver

Dec 6 2018

GALLIENUS 260AD Rome Authentic Ancient Roman Coin PEGASUS Flying Horse i66923

GALLIENUS 260AD Rome Authentic Ancient Roman Coin PEGASUS Flying Horse i66923

GALLIENUS 260AD Rome Authentic Ancient Roman Coin PEGASUS Flying Horse i66923

GALLIENUS 260AD Rome Authentic Ancient Roman Coin PEGASUS Flying Horse i66923

Item: i66923 Authentic Ancient Coin of. Bronze Antoninianus 19mm (2.88 grams) Rome mint. Struck circa 260-268 A. Reference: Goebl 712; RIC V-1, Rome 283 var; Sear 10362. GALLIENVS AVG, radiate head right SOLI CONS AVG, Pegasus springing right. Officina letter A offset to right of exergue. Pegasus is one of the best known fantastical creatures in Greek mythology. He is a winged divine horse, usually white in color. He was sired by Poseidon, in his role as horse-god, and foaled by the Gorgon Medusa. He was the brother of Chrysaor, born at a single birthing when his mother was decapitated by Perseus. Greco-Roman poets write about his ascent to heaven after his birth and his obeisance to Zeus, king of the gods, who instructed him to bring lightning and thunder from Olympus. Friend of the Muses, Pegasus is the creator of Hippocrene, the fountain on Mt. He was captured by the Greek hero Bellerophon near the fountain Peirene with the help of Athena and Poseidon. Pegasus allows the hero to ride him to defeat a monster, the Chimera, before realizing many other exploits. His rider, however, falls off his back trying to reach Mount Olympus. Zeus transformed him into the constellation Pegasus and placed him in the sky. Hypotheses have been proposed regarding its relationship with the Muses, the gods Athena, Poseidon, Zeus, Apollo, and the hero Perseus. The symbolism of Pegasus varies with time. Symbol of wisdom and especially of fame from the Middle Ages until the Renaissance, he became one symbol of the poetry and the creator of sources in which the poets come to draw inspiration, particularly in the 19th century. Pegasus is the subject of a very rich iconography, especially through the ancient Greek pottery and paintings and sculptures of the Renaissance. Personification of the water, solar myth, or shaman mount, Carl Jung and his followers have seen in Pegasus a profound symbolic esoteric in relation to the spiritual energy that allows to access to the realm of the gods on Mount Olympus. In the 20th and 21st century, he appeared in movies, in fantasy, in video games and in role play, where by extension, the term Pegasus is often used to refer to any winged horse. Sole reign Son of Valerian I. Gallienus Latin: Publius Licinius Egnatius Gallienus Augustus ; c. 218 – 268 was Roman Emperor with his father Valerian from 253 to 260 and alone from 260 to 268. He ruled during the Crisis of the Third Century that nearly caused the collapse of the empire. While he won a number of military victories, he was unable to prevent the secession of important provinces. The exact birth date of Gallienus is unknown. The Greek chronicler John Malalas and the Epitome de Caesaribus report that he was about 50 years old at the time of his death, meaning he was born around 218. He was the son of emperor Valerian and Mariniana, who may have been of senatorial rank, possibly the daughter of Egnatius Victor Marinianus, and his brother was Valerianus Minor. Inscriptions on coins connect him with Falerii in Etruria, which may have been his birthplace; it has yielded many inscriptions relating to his mother’s family, the Egnatii. Gallienus married Cornelia Salonina about ten years before his accession to the throne. She was the mother of three princes: Valerian II, who died in 258; Saloninus, who was named co-emperor but was murdered in 260 by the army of general Postumus; and Marinianus, who was killed in 268, shortly after his father was assassinated. When Valerian was proclaimed Emperor on 22 October 253, he asked the Senate to ratify the elevation of Gallienus to Caesar and Augustus. He was also designated Consul Ordinarius for 254. As Marcus Aurelius and his adopted brother Lucius Verus had done a century earlier, Gallienus and his father divided the Empire. Valerian left for the East to stem the Persian threat, and Gallienus remained in Italy to repel the Germanic tribes on the Rhine and Danube. Division of the empire had become necessary due to its sheer size and the numerous threats it faced, and it facilitated negotiations with enemies who demanded to communicate directly with the emperor. Early reign and the revolt of Ingenuus. Gallienus spent most of his time in the provinces of the Rhine area (Germania Inferior, Germania Superior, Raetia, and Noricum), though he almost certainly visited the Danube area and Illyricum during 253 to 258. According to Eutropius and Aurelius Victor, he was particularly energetic and successful in preventing invaders from attacking the German provinces and Gaul, despite the weakness caused by Valerian’s march on Italy against Aemilianus in 253. According to numismatic evidence, he seems to have won many victories there, and a victory in Roman Dacia might also be dated to that period. Even the hostile Latin tradition attributes success to him at this time. In 255 or 257, Gallienus was made Consul again, suggesting that he briefly visited Rome on those occasions, although no record survives. During his Danube sojourn (Drinkwater suggests in 255 or 256), he proclaimed his elder son Valerian II Caesar and thus official heir to himself and Valerian I; the boy probably joined Gallienus on campaign at that time, and when Gallienus moved west to the Rhine provinces in 257, he remained behind on the Danube as the personification of Imperial authority. Sometime between 258 and 260 (the exact date is unclear), while Valerian was distracted with the ongoing invasion of Shapur in the East, and Gallienus was preoccupied with his problems in the West, Ingenuus, governor of at least one of the Pannonian provinces, took advantage and declared himself emperor. Valerian II had apparently died on the Danube, most likely in 258. Ingenuus may have been responsible for that calamity. Alternatively, the defeat and capture of Valerian at the battle of Edessa may have been the trigger for the subsequent revolts of Ingenuus, Regalianus, and Postumus. In any case, Gallienus reacted with great speed. He left his son Saloninus as Caesar at Cologne, under the supervision of Albanus (or Silvanus) and the military leadership of Postumus. He then hastily crossed the Balkans, taking with him the new cavalry corps (comitatus) under the command of Aureolus and defeated Ingenuus at Mursa or Sirmium. The victory must be attributed mainly to the cavalry and its brilliant commander. Ingenuus was killed by his own guards or committed suicide by drowning himself after the fall of his capital, Sirmium. Invasion of the Alamanni. A major invasion by the Alemanni and other Germanic tribes occurred between 258 and 260 (it is hard to fix the precise date of these events), probably due to the vacuum left by the withdrawal of troops supporting Gallienus in the campaign against Ingenuus. Franks broke through the lower Rhine, invading Gaul, some reaching as far as southern Spain, sacking Tarraco (modern Tarragona). The Alamanni invaded, probably through Agri Decumates (an area between the upper Rhine and the upper Danube), likely followed by the Juthungi. After devastating Germania Superior and Raetia (parts of southern France and Switzerland), they entered Italy, the first invasion of the Italian peninsula, aside from its most remote northern regions, since Hannibal 500 years before. When invaders reached the outskirts of Rome, they were repelled by an improvised army assembled by the Senate, consisting of local troops (probably prtorian guards) and the strongest of the civilian population. On their retreat through northern Italy, they were intercepted and defeated in the battle of Mediolanum (near present day Milan) by Gallienus’ army, which had advanced from Gaul, or from the Balkans after dealing with the Franks. The battle of Mediolanum was decisive, and the Alamanni didn’t bother the empire for the next ten years. The Juthungi managed to cross the Alps with their valuables and captives from Italy. An historian in the 19th century suggested that the initiative of the Senate gave rise to jealousy and suspicion by Gallienus, thus contributing to his exclusion of senators from military commands. The revolt of Regalianus. Around the same time, Regalianus, a military commander of Illyricum, was proclaimed Emperor. The reasons for this are unclear, and the Historia Augusta (almost the sole resource for these events) does not provide a credible story. It is possible the seizure can be attributed to the discontent of the civilian and military provincials, who felt the defense of the province was being neglected. Regalianus held power for some six months and issued coins bearing his image. After some success against the Sarmatians, his revolt was put down by the invasion of Roxolani into Pannonia, and Regalianus himself was killed when the invaders took the city of Sirmium. Capture of Valerian, revolt of Macrianus. In the East, Valerian was confronted with serious troubles. A band of Scythians set a naval raid against Pontus, in the northern part of modern Turkey. After ravaging the province, they moved south into Cappadocia. Valerian led troops to intercept them but failed, perhaps because of a plague that gravely weakened his army, as well as the contemporary invasion of northern Mesopotamia by Shapur I, ruler of the Sassanid Empire. In 259 or 260, the Roman army was defeated in the Battle of Edessa, and Valerian was taken prisoner. Shapur’s army raided Cilicia and Cappadocia (in present day Turkey), sacking, as Shapur’s inscriptions claim, 36 cities. It took a rally by an officer Callistus (Balista), a fiscal official named Fulvius Macrianus, the remains of the Eastern Roman legions, and Odenathus and his Palmyrene horsemen to turn the tide against Shapur. The Persians were driven back, but Macrianus proclaimed his two sons Quietus and Macrianus (sometimes misspelled Macrinus) as emperors. Coins struck for them in major cities of the East indicate acknowledgement of the usurpation. The two Macriani left Quietus, Ballista, and, presumably, Odenathus to deal with the Persians while they invaded Europe with an army of 30,000 men, according to the Historia Augusta. At first they met no opposition. The Pannonian legions joined the invaders, being resentful of the absence of Gallienus. He sent his successful commander Aureolus against the rebels, however, and the decisive battle was fought in the spring or early summer of 261, most likely in Illyricum, although Zonaras locates it in Pannonia. In any case, the army of the usurpers surrendered, and their two leaders were killed. In the aftermath of the battle, the rebellion of Postumus had already started, so Gallienus had no time to deal with the rest of the usurpers, namely Balista and Quietus. Odenathus received the title of dux Romanorum and besieged the usurpers, who were based at Emesa. Eventually, the people of Emesa killed Quietus, and Odenathus arrested and executed Balista about November 261. The revolt of Postumus. After the defeat at Edessa, Gallienus lost control over the provinces of Britain, Spain, parts of Germania, and a large part of Gaul when another general, Postumus, declared his own realm (usually known today as the Gallic Empire). The revolt partially coincided with that of Macrianus in the East. Gallienus had installed his son Saloninus and his guardian, Silvanus, in Cologne in 258. Postumus, a general in command of troops on the banks of the Rhine, defeated some raiders and took possession of their spoils. Instead of returning it to the original owners, he preferred to distribute it amongst his soldiers. When news of this reached Silvanus, he demanded the spoils be sent to him. Postumus made a show of submission, but his soldiers mutinied and proclaimed him Emperor. Under his command, they besieged Cologne, and after some weeks the defenders of the city opened the gates and handed Saloninus and Silvanus to Postumus, who had them killed. The dating of these events is not accurate, but they apparently occurred just before the end of 260. Postumus claimed the consulship for himself and one of his associates, Honoratianus, but according to D. Potter, he never tried to unseat Gallienus or invade Italy. Upon receiving news of the murder of his son, Gallienus began gathering forces to face Postumus. The invasion of the Macriani forced him to dispatch Aureolus with a large force to oppose them, however, leaving him with insufficient troops to battle Postumus. After some initial defeats, the army of Aureolus, having defeated the Macriani, rejoined him, and Postumus was expelled. Aureolus was entrusted with the pursuit and deliberately allowed Postumus to escape and gather new forces. During the siege, Gallenus was severely wounded by an arrow and had to leave the field. The standstill persisted until the death of Gallienus, and the Gallic Empire remained independent until 274. The revolt of Aemilianus. In spring of 262, the city was wrenched by civil unrest as a result of a new revolt. The rebel this time was the prefect of Egypt, Lucius Mussius Aemilianus, who had already given support to the revolt of the Macriani. The correspondence of bishop Dionysius of Alexandria provides a colourful commentary on the sombre background of invasion, civil war, plague, and famine that characterized this age. Knowing he could not afford to lose control of the vital Egyptian granaries, Gallienus sent his general Theodotus against Aemilianus, probably by a naval expedition. The decisive battle probably took place near Thebes, and the result was a clear defeat of Aemilianus. In the aftermath, Gallienus became Consul three more times in 262, 264, and 266. Herulian invasions, revolt of Aureolus, conspiracy and death. In the years 267-269, Goths and other barbarians invaded the empire in great numbers. Sources are extremely confused on the dating of these invasions, the participants, and their targets. Modern historians are not even able to discern with certainty whether there were two or more of these invasions or a single prolonged one. It seems that, at first, a major naval expedition was led by the Heruli starting from north of the Black Sea and leading in the ravaging of many cities of Greece (among them, Athens and Sparta). Then another, even more numerous army of invaders started a second naval invasion of the empire. The Romans defeated the barbarians on sea first. Gallienus’ army then won a battle in Thrace, and the Emperor pursued the invaders. According to some historians, he was the leader of the army who won the great Battle of Naissus, while the majority believes that the victory must be attributed to his successor, Claudius II. In 268, at some time before or soon after the battle of Naissus, the authority of Gallienus was challenged by Aureolus, commander of the cavalry stationed in Mediolanum (Milan), who was supposed to keep an eye on Postumus. Instead, he acted as deputy to Postumus until the very last days of his revolt, when he seems to have claimed the throne for himself. The decisive battle took place at what is now Pontirolo Nuovo near Milan; Aureolus was clearly defeated and driven back to Milan. Gallienus laid siege to the city but was murdered during the siege. There are differing accounts of the murder, but the sources agree that most of Gallienus’ officials wanted him dead. According to the Historia Augusta, an unreliable source compiled long after the events it describes, a conspiracy was led by the commander of the guard Aurelius Heraclianus and Marcianus. Cecropius, commander of the Dalmatians, spread the word that the forces of Aureolus were leaving the city, and Gallienus left his tent without his bodyguard, only to be struck down by Cecropius. One version has Claudius selected as Emperor by the conspirators, another chosen by Gallienus on his death bed; the Historia Augusta was concerned to substantiate the descent of the Constantinian dynasty from Claudius, and this may explain its accounts, which do not involve Claudius in the murder. The other sources Zosimus i. 40 and Zonaras xii. 25 report that the conspiracy was organized by Heraclianus, Claudius, and Aurelian. According to Aurelius Victor and Zonaras, on hearing the news that Gallienus was dead, the Senate in Rome ordered the execution of his family (including his brother Valerianus and son Marinianus) and their supporters, just before receiving a message from Claudius to spare their lives and deify his predecessor. Gallienus was not treated favorably by ancient historians, partly due to the secession of Gaul and Palmyra and his inability to win them back. According to modern scholar Pat Southern, some historians now see him in a more positive light. Gallienus produced some useful reforms. He contributed to military history as the first to commission primarily cavalry units, the Comitatenses, that could be dispatched anywhere in the Empire in short order. This reform arguably created a precedent for the future emperors Diocletian and Constantine I. The biographer Aurelius Victor reports that Gallienus forbade senators from becoming military commanders. This policy undermined senatorial power, as more reliable equestrian commanders rose to prominence. In Southern’s view, these reforms and the decline in senatorial influence not only helped Aurelian to salvage the Empire, but they also make Gallienus one of the emperors most responsible for the creation of the Dominate, along with Septimius Severus, Diocletian, and Constantine I. By portraying himself with the attributes of the gods on his coinage, Gallienus began the final separation of the Emperor from his subjects. A late bust of Gallienus (see above) depicts him with a largely blank face, gazing heavenward, as seen on the famous stone head of Constantine I. One of the last rulers of Rome to be theoretically called “Princeps”, or First Citizen, Gallienus’ shrewd self-promotion assisted in paving the way for those who would be addressed with the words “Dominus et Deus” (Lord and God). World-renowned expert numismatist, enthusiast, author and dealer in authentic ancient Greek, ancient Roman, ancient Byzantine, world coins & more. Ilya Zlobin is an independent individual who has a passion for coin collecting, research and understanding the importance of the historical context and significance all coins and objects represent. Send me a message about this and I can update your invoice should you want this method. Getting your order to you, quickly and securely is a top priority and is taken seriously here. Great care is taken in packaging and mailing every item securely and quickly. What is a certificate of authenticity and what guarantees do you give that the item is authentic? You will be very 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. Additionally, the coin is inside it’s own protective coin flip (holder), with a 2×2 inch description of the coin matching the individual number on the COA. Whether your goal is to collect or give the item as a gift, coins presented like this could be more prized and valued higher than items that were not given such care and attention to. When should I leave feedback? Please don’t leave any negative feedbacks, as it happens sometimes that people rush to leave feedback before letting sufficient time for their 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. How and where do I learn more about collecting ancient coins? Visit the “Guide on How to Use My Store”. For on an overview about using my store, with additional information and links to all other parts of my store which may include educational information on topics you are looking for. The item “GALLIENUS 260AD Rome Authentic Ancient Roman Coin PEGASUS Flying Horse i66923″ is in sale since Thursday, January 25, 2018. 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: Gallienus

Dec 5 2018

MARCUS AURELIUS as Caesar 147AD Rome Ancient Silver Roman Coin MINERVA i71734

MARCUS AURELIUS as Caesar 147AD Rome Ancient Silver Roman Coin MINERVA i71734

MARCUS AURELIUS as Caesar 147AD Rome Ancient Silver Roman Coin MINERVA i71734

MARCUS AURELIUS as Caesar 147AD Rome Ancient Silver Roman Coin MINERVA i71734

Item: i71734 Authentic Ancient Coin of. Caesar : 139-161 A. Silver Denarius 18mm (3.11 grams) Issued as Caesar. Rome mint, struck 147-148 A. Reference: BMC 636; Cohen 608; RIC 438b. AVRELIVS CAE-SAR AVG PII F, bare head of Marcus Aurelius to right. TR POT II COS II, helmeted Minerva standing front, head to right, holding spear with her right hand and resting her left hand on shield. Minerva (Etruscan : Menrfa , or Menrva) was the Roman goddess whom Hellenizing Romans from the second century BC onwards equated with the Greek goddess Athena. She was the virgin goddess of poetry, medicine, wisdom, commerce, weaving, crafts, magic, and the inventor of music. She is often depicted with an owl, her sacred creature and is, through this connection, a symbol of wisdom. This article focuses on Minerva in ancient Rome and in cultic practice. For information on Latin literary mythological accounts of Minerva, which were heavily influenced by Greek mythology, see Pallas Athena, where she is one of three virgin goddesses along with Artemis and Hestia, known by the Romans as Diana and Vesta. The name “Minerva” is imported from the Etruscans who called her Menrva. Extrapolating from her Roman nature, it is assumed that in Etruscan mythology, Minerva was the goddess of wisdom, war, art, schools and commerce. She was the Etruscan counterpart to Greek Athena. Like Athena, Minerva was born from the head of her father, Jupiter (Greek Zeus). By a process of folk etymology, the Romans could have confused the phones of her foreign name with those of the root men- in Latin words such as mens meaning “mind”, perhaps because one of her aspects as goddess pertained to the intellectual. The word mens has the Proto-Indo-European mn- stem, linked with memory as in Greek Mnemosyne and mnestis (: memory, remembrance, recollection). Menrva was part of a holy triad with Tinia and Uni, equivalent to the Roman Capitoline Triad of Jupiter-Juno-Minerva. Minerva was the daughter of Jupiter. As Minerva Medica , she was the goddess of medicine and doctors. As Minerva Achaea , she was worshipped at Luceria in Apulia where votive gifts and arms said to be those of Diomedes were preserved in her temple. In Fasti III, Ovid called her the goddess of a thousand works. Minerva was worshipped throughout Italy, though only in Rome did she take on the warlike character shared by Athena. Her worship was also taken out to the empire – in Britain, for example, she was conflated with the local wisdom goddess Sulis. The Romans celebrated her festival from March 19 to March 23 during the day which is called, in the neuter plural, Quinquatria, the fifth after the Ides of March, the nineteenth, an artisans’ holiday. A lesser version, the Minusculae Quinquatria, was held on the Ides of June, June 13, by the flute-players, who were particularly useful to religion. In 207 BC, a guild of poets and actors was formed to meet and make votive offerings at the temple of Minerva on the Aventine hill. Among others, its members included Livius Andronicus. The Aventine sanctuary of Minerva continued to be an important center of the arts for much of the middle Roman Republic. Minerva was worshipped on the Capitoline Hill as one of the Capitoline Triad along with Jupiter and Juno, at the Temple of Minerva Medica, and at the “Delubrum Minervae” a temple founded around 50 BC by Pompey on the site now occupied by the church of Santa Maria sopra Minerva facing the present-day Piazza della Minerva. And heir of Hadrian. Father-in-law of Lucius Verus. Marcus Aurelius (Latin: Marcus Aurelius Antoninus Augustus ; 26 April 121 – 17 March 180 AD) was Emperor of Rome from 161 to 180. He ruled with Lucius Verus as co-emperor from 161 until Verus’ death in 169. Marcus Aurelius was the last of the so-called Five Good Emperors. He was a practitioner of Stoicism, and his untitled writing, commonly known as Meditations , is a significant source of the modern understanding of ancient Stoic philosophy, and is considered by many commentators to be one of the greatest works of philosophy. During his reign, the Roman Empire defeated a revitalized Parthian Empire in the East: Aurelius’ general Avidius Cassius sacked the capital Ctesiphon in 164. In central Europe, Aurelius fought the Marcomanni, Quadi, and Sarmatians with success during the Marcomannic Wars, although the threat of the Germanic peoples began to represent a troubling reality for the Empire. A revolt in the East led by Avidius Cassius failed to gain momentum and was suppressed immediately. Persecution of Christians increased during his reign. Aurelius’ Meditations , written in Greek while on campaign between 170 and 180, is still revered as a literary monument to a philosophy of service and duty, describing how to find and preserve equanimity, a state of psychological stability and composure, in the midst of conflict by following nature as a source of guidance and inspiration. His death in 180 is widely cited as the end of the Pax Romana and the increasing instability in the west that followed has traditionally been seen as the beginning of the eventual Fall of the Western Roman Empire. The Statue of Marcus Aurelius (detail) in the Musei Capitolini in Rome. The major sources depicting the life and rule of Marcus Aurelius are patchy and frequently unreliable. The most important group of sources, the biographies contained in the Historia Augusta , claim to be written by a group of authors at the turn of the 4th century AD, but are in fact written by a single author (referred to here as “the biographer”) from the later 4th century c. The later biographies and the biographies of subordinate emperors and usurpers are a tissue of lies and fiction, but the earlier biographies, derived primarily from now-lost earlier sources (Marius Maximus or Ignotus), are much more accurate. For Marcus’ life and rule, the biographies of Hadrian, Antoninus Pius, Marcus and Lucius Verus are largely reliable, but those of Aelius Verus and Avidius Cassius are full of fiction. A body of correspondence between Marcus’ tutor Fronto and various Antonine officials survives in a series of patchy manuscripts, covering the period from c. Marcus’ own Meditations offer a window on his inner life, but are largely undateable, and make few specific references to worldly affairs. The main narrative source for the period is Cassius Dio, a Greek senator from Bithynian Nicaea who wrote a history of Rome from its founding to 229 in eighty books. Dio is vital for the military history of the period, but his senatorial prejudices and strong opposition to imperial expansion obscure his perspective. Some other literary sources provide specific detail: the writings of the physician Galen on the habits of the Antonine elite, the orations of Aelius Aristides on the temper of the times, and the constitutions preserved in the Digest and Codex Justinianus on Marcus’ legal work. Inscriptions and coin finds supplement the literary sources. Early life and career. Main article: Early life and career of Marcus Aurelius. Marcus’ family originated in Ucubi, a small town southeast of Córdoba in Iberian Baetica. The family rose to prominence in the late 1st century AD. Marcus’ great-grandfather Marcus Annius Verus (I) was a senator and (according to the Historia Augusta) ex-praetor; in 73-74, his grandfather, Marcus Annius Verus (II), was made a patrician. Verus’ elder son-Marcus Aurelius’ father-Marcus Annius Verus (III) married Domitia Lucilla. Statue of young Marcus Aurelius from a private collection housed in the San Antonio Museum of Art. Lucilla was the daughter of the patrician P. Calvisius Tullus Ruso and the elder Domitia Lucilla. The elder Domitia Lucilla had inherited a great fortune (described at length in one of Pliny’s letters) from her maternal grandfather and her paternal grandfather by adoption. The younger Lucilla would acquire much of her mother’s wealth, including a large brickworks on the outskirts of Rome-a profitable enterprise in an era when the city was experiencing a construction boom. A bust of Marcus Aurelius as a young boy (Capitoline Museum). Anthony Birley, Marcus’ modern biographer, writes of the bust: This is certainly a grave young man. Lucilla and Verus (III) had two children: a son, Marcus, born on 26 April 121 AD, and a daughter, Annia Cornificia Faustina, probably born in 122 or 123 AD. Verus (III) probably died in 124 AD, during his praetorship, when Marcus was only three years old. Though he can hardly have known him, Marcus Aurelius wrote in his Meditations that he had learned “modesty and manliness” from his memories of his father and from the man’s posthumous reputation. Lucilla did not remarry. Portrait of Emperor Marcus Aurelius – Palazzo Nuovo (Musei Capitolini). Marcus was in the care of “nurses”. Even so, Marcus credits his mother with teaching him “religious piety, simplicity in diet” and how to avoid “the ways of the rich”. In his letters, Marcus makes frequent and affectionate reference to her; he was grateful that, “although she was fated to die young, yet she spent her last years with me”. After his father’s death, Aurelius was raised by his paternal grandfather Marcus Annius Verus who, according to Roman Law, had always retained the “patria potestas” over his son and grandson. Technically this was not an adoption, since an adoption would be the legal creation of a new and different “patria potestas” (II). Another man, Lucius Catilius Severus, also participated in his upbringing. Severus is described as Marcus’ “maternal great-grandfather”; he is probably the stepfather of the elder Lucilla. Marcus was raised in his parents’ home on the Caelian Hill, a district he would affectionately refer to as “my Caelian”. It was an upscale region, with few public buildings but many aristocratic villas. Marcus’ grandfather owned his own palace beside the Lateran, where Marcus would spend much of his childhood. Marcus thanks his grandfather for teaching him “good character and avoidance of bad temper”. He was less fond of the mistress his grandfather took and lived with after the death of Rupilia Faustina, his wife. Marcus was grateful that he did not have to live with her longer than he did. Marcus was taught at home, in line with contemporary aristocratic trends; Marcus thanks Catilius Severus for encouraging him to avoid public schools. One of his teachers, Diognetus, a painting-master, proved particularly influential; he seems to have introduced Marcus to the philosophic way of life. In April 132, at the behest of Diognetus, Marcus took up the dress and habits of the philosopher: he studied while wearing a rough Greek cloak, and would sleep on the ground until his mother convinced him to sleep on a bed. A new set of tutors-Alexander of Cotiaeum, Trosius Aper and Tuticius Proculus-took over Marcus’ education in about 132 or 133. Little is known of the latter two (both teachers of Latin), but Alexander was a major littérateur, the leading Homeric scholar of his day. Marcus thanks Alexander for his training in literary styling. Alexander’s influence-an emphasis on matter over style, on careful wording, with the occasional Homeric quotation-has been detected in Marcus’ Meditations. Succession to Hadrian, 136-38. In late 136, Hadrian almost died from a haemorrhage. Convalescent in his villa at Tivoli, he selected Lucius Ceionius Commodus, Marcus’ intended father-in-law, as his successor and adopted him as his son. The selection was done invitis omnibus , “against the wishes of everyone”. While there will never be absolute certainty regarding his motives, it would appear that his goal was to eventually place the then-too-young Marcus on the throne. As part of his adoption, Commodus took the name Lucius Aelius Caesar. His health was so poor that during a ceremony to mark his becoming heir to the throne, he was too weak to lift a large shield on his own. The night before the speech, however, he grew ill, and died of a haemorrhage later in the day. On 24 January 138 AD, Hadrian selected Aurelius Antoninus as his new successor. After a few days’ consideration, Antoninus accepted. He was adopted on 25 February. As part of Hadrian’s terms, Antoninus adopted Marcus and Lucius Verus, the son of Lucius Aelius. By this scheme, Lucius Verus, who was already Hadrian’s adoptive grandson through his natural father, remained Hadrian’s adoptive grandson through his new father. The adoption of Marcus Aurelius was probably a suggestion of Antoninus himself, since Aurelius was the nephew of Antoninus’s wife and would be his favorite son. Aelius Aurelius Verus; Lucius became L. At Hadrian’s request, Antoninus’ daughter Faustina was betrothed to Lucius. He reportedly greeted the news that Hadrian had become his adoptive grandfather with sadness, instead of joy. Only with reluctance did he move from his mother’s house on the Caelian to Hadrian’s private home. At some time in 138 AD, Hadrian requested in the senate that Marcus be exempt from the law barring him from becoming quaestor before his twenty-fourth birthday. The senate complied, and Marcus served under Antoninus, consul for 139. Marcus’ adoption diverted him from the typical career path of his class. If not for his adoption, he probably would have become triumvir monetalis , a highly regarded post involving token administration of the state mint; after that, he could have served as tribune with a legion, becoming the legion’s nominal second-in-command. Marcus probably would have opted for travel and further education instead. As it was, Marcus was set apart from his fellow citizens. Nonetheless, his biographer attests that his character remained unaffected: He still showed the same respect to his relations as he had when he was an ordinary citizen, and he was as thrifty and careful of his possessions as he had been when he lived in a private household. Baiae, seaside resort and site of Hadrian’s last days. Marcus would holiday in the town with the imperial family in the summer of 143. Turner, The Bay of Baiae, with Apollo and Sybil , 1823. After a series of suicide attempts, all thwarted by Antoninus, Hadrian left for Baiae, a seaside resort on the Campanian coast. His condition did not improve, and he abandoned the diet prescribed by his doctors, indulging himself in food and drink. He sent for Antoninus, who was at his side when he died on 10 July 138. His remains were buried quietly at Puteoli. The succession to Antoninus was peaceful and stable: Antoninus kept Hadrian’s nominees in office and appeased the senate, respecting its privileges and commuting the death sentences of men charged in Hadrian’s last days. For his dutiful behavior, Antoninus was asked to accept the name “Pius”. Heir to Antoninus Pius, 138-45. Immediately after Hadrian’s death, Antoninus approached Marcus and requested that his marriage arrangements be amended: Marcus’ betrothal to Ceionia Fabia would be annulled, and he would be betrothed to Faustina, Antoninus’ daughter, instead. Faustina’s betrothal to Ceionia’s brother Lucius Commodus would also have to be annulled. Marcus consented to Antoninus’ proposal. Antoninus bolstered Marcus’ dignity: Marcus was made consul for 140 AD, with Antoninus as his colleague, and was appointed as a seviri , one of the knights’ six commanders, at the order’s annual parade on 15 July 139 AD. As the heir apparent, Marcus became princeps iuventutis , head of the equestrian order. He now took the name Caesar: Marcus Aelius Aurelius Verus Caesar. Marcus would later caution himself against taking the name too seriously: “See that you do not turn into a Caesar; do not be dipped into the purple dye-for that can happen”. At the senate’s request, Marcus joined all the priestly colleges pontifices , augures , quindecimviri sacris faciundis , septemviri epulonum , etc. ; direct evidence for membership, however, is available only for the Arval Brethren. Antoninus demanded that Marcus take up residence in the House of Tiberius, the imperial palace on the Palatine. Antoninus also made him take up the habits of his new station, the aulicum fastigium or “pomp of the court”, against Marcus’ objections. Marcus would struggle to reconcile the life of the court with his philosophic yearnings. He told himself it was an attainable goal-”where life is possible, then it is possible to live the right life; life is possible in a palace, so it is possible to live the right life in a palace”-but he found it difficult nonetheless. He would criticize himself in the Meditations for “abusing court life” in front of company. As quaestor, Marcus would have had little real administrative work to do. He would read imperial letters to the senate when Antoninus was absent, and would do secretarial work for the senators. He was being “fitted for ruling the state”, in the words of his biographer. He was required to make a speech to the assembled senators as well, making oratorical training essential for the job. On 1 January 145 AD, Marcus was made consul a second time. He might have been unwell at this time: a letter from Fronto that might have been sent at this time urges Marcus to have plenty of sleep “so that you may come into the Senate with a good colour and read your speech with a strong voice”. Marcus was never particularly healthy or strong. The Roman historian Cassius Dio, writing of his later years, praised him for behaving dutifully in spite of his various illnesses. A bust of Faustina the Younger, Marcus’ wife (Louvre). In April 145 AD, Marcus married Faustina, as had been planned since 138 AD. Since Marcus was, by adoption, Antoninus Pius’ son, under Roman law he was marrying his sister; Antoninus would have had to formally release one or the other from his paternal authority (his patria potestas) for the ceremony to take place. Little is specifically known of the ceremony, but it is said to have been “noteworthy”. Coins were issued with the heads of the couple, and Antoninus, as Pontifex Maximus , would have officiated. Marcus makes no apparent reference to the marriage in his surviving letters, and only sparing references to Faustina. Fronto and further education, 136-61. After taking the toga virilis in 136 AD, Marcus probably began his training in oratory. He had three tutors in Greek, Aninus Macer, Caninius Celer, and Herodes Atticus, and one in Latin, Fronto. The latter two were the most esteemed orators of the day. Fronto and Atticus, however, probably did not become his tutors until his adoption by Antoninus in 138 AD. The preponderance of Greek tutors indicates the importance of the language to the aristocracy of Rome. This was the age of the Second Sophistic, a renaissance in Greek letters. Although educated in Rome, in his Meditations , Marcus would write his inmost thoughts in Greek. A bust of Herodes Atticus, from his villa at Kephissia (National Archaeological Museum of Athens). Herodes was controversial: an enormously rich Athenian (probably the richest man in the eastern half of the empire), he was quick to anger, and resented by his fellow-Athenians for his patronizing manner. Atticus was an inveterate opponent of Stoicism and philosophic pretensions. He thought the Stoics’ desire for a “lack of feeling” foolish: they would live a “sluggish, enervated life”, he said. Marcus would become a Stoic. He would not mention Herodes at all in his Meditations , in spite of the fact that they would come into contact many times over the following decades. Fronto was highly esteemed: in the self-consciously antiquarian world of Latin letters, he was thought of as second only to Cicero, perhaps even an alternative to him. He did not care much for Herodes, though Marcus was eventually to put the pair on speaking terms. Fronto exercised a complete mastery of Latin, capable of tracing expressions through the literature, producing obscure synonyms, and challenging minor improprieties in word choice. A significant amount of the correspondence between Fronto and Marcus has survived. The pair were very close. Farewell my Fronto, wherever you are, my most sweet love and delight. How is it between you and me? I love you and you are not here. Marcus spent time with Fronto’s wife and daughter, both named Cratia, and they enjoyed light conversation. He wrote Fronto a letter on his birthday, claiming to love him as he loved himself, and calling on the gods to ensure that every word he learned of literature, he would learn “from the lips of Fronto”. His prayers for Fronto’s health were more than conventional, because Fronto was frequently ill; at times, he seems to be an almost constant invalid, always suffering-about one-quarter of the surviving letters deal with the man’s sicknesses. Marcus asks that Fronto’s pain be inflicted on himself, “of my own accord with every kind of discomfort”. Fronto never became Marcus’ full-time teacher, and continued his career as an advocate. One notorious case brought him into conflict with Herodes. Marcus pleaded with Fronto, first with “advice”, then as a “favor”, not to attack Herodes; he had already asked Herodes to refrain from making the first blows. Fronto replied that he was surprised to discover Marcus counted Herodes as a friend (perhaps Herodes was not yet Marcus’ tutor), allowed that Marcus might be correct, but nonetheless affirmed his intent to win the case by any means necessary:… The charges are frightful and must be spoken of as frightful. Those in particular which refer to the beating and robbing I will describe in such a way that they savour of gall and bile. If I happen to call him an uneducated little Greek it will not mean war to the death. The outcome of the trial is unknown. By the age of twenty-five (between April 146 and April 147), Marcus had grown disaffected with his studies in jurisprudence, and showed some signs of general malaise. His master, he writes to Fronto, was an unpleasant blowhard, and had made “a hit at” him: It is easy to sit yawning next to a judge, he says, but to be a judge is noble work. Marcus had grown tired of his exercises, of taking positions in imaginary debates. When he criticized the insincerity of conventional language, Fronto took to defend it. In any case, Marcus’ formal education was now over. He had kept his teachers on good terms, following them devotedly. It “affected his health adversely”, his biographer writes, to have devoted so much effort to his studies. It was the only thing the biographer could find fault with in Marcus’ entire boyhood. Fronto had warned Marcus against the study of philosophy early on: it is better never to have touched the teaching of philosophy… Than to have tasted it superficially, with the edge of the lips, as the saying is. He disdained philosophy and philosophers, and looked down on Marcus’ sessions with Apollonius of Chalcedon and others in this circle. Fronto put an uncharitable interpretation of Marcus’ “conversion to philosophy”: “in the fashion of the young, tired of boring work”, Marcus had turned to philosophy to escape the constant exercises of oratorical training. Marcus kept in close touch with Fronto, but he would ignore his scruples. Apollonius may have introduced Marcus to Stoic philosophy, but Quintus Junius Rusticus would have the strongest influence on the boy. He was the man Fronto recognized as having “wooed Marcus away” from oratory. He was twenty years older than Marcus, older than Fronto. As the grandson of Arulenus Rusticus, one of the martyrs to the tyranny of Domitian r. 81-96, he was heir to the tradition of “Stoic opposition” to the “bad emperors” of the 1st century; the true successor of Seneca (as opposed to Fronto, the false one). Births and deaths, 147-160. On November 30, 147, Faustina gave birth to a girl, named Domitia Faustina. She was the first of at least thirteen children (including two sets of twins) that Faustina would bear over the next twenty-three years. The next day, 1 December, Antoninus Pius gave Marcus the tribunician power and the imperium -authority over the armies and provinces of the emperor. As tribune, Marcus had the right to bring one measure before the senate after the four Antoninus could introduce. His tribunican powers would be renewed, with Antoninus’, on 10 December 147. The Mausoleum of Hadrian, where the children of Marcus and Faustina were buried. The first mention of Domitia in Marcus’ letters reveals her as a sickly infant. If the gods are willing we seem to have a hope of recovery. The diarrhea has stopped, the little attacks of fever have been driven away. But the emaciation is still extreme and there is still quite a bit of coughing. ” He and Faustina, Marcus wrote, had been “pretty occupied with the girl’s care. Domitia would die in 151. In 149, Faustina gave birth again, to twin sons. Contemporary coinage commemorates the event, with crossed cornucopiae beneath portrait busts of the two small boys, and the legend temporum felicitas , “the happiness of the times”. They did not survive long. Before the end of the year, another family coin was issued: it shows only a tiny girl, Domitia Faustina, and one boy baby. Then another: the girl alone. The infants were buried in the Mausoleum of Hadrian, where their epitaphs survive. They were called Titus Aurelius Antoninus and Tiberius Aelius Aurelius. Marcus steadied himself: One man prays:’How I may not lose my little child’, but you must pray:’How I may not be afraid to lose him’. ” He quoted from the Iliad what he called the “briefest and most familiar saying… Enough to dispel sorrow and fear. Iliad 6.146. Another daughter was born on 7 March 150, Annia Aurelia Galeria Lucilla. At some time between 155 and 161, probably soon after 155, Marcus’ mother, Domitia Lucilla, died. Faustina probably had another daughter in 151, but the child, Annia Galeria Aurelia Faustina, might not have been born until 153. Another son, Tiberius Aelius Antoninus, was born in 152. A coin issue celebrates fecunditati Augustae , “the Augusta’s fertility”, depicting two girls and an infant. The boy did not survive long; on coins from 156, only the two girls were depicted. He might have died in 152, the same year as Marcus’ sister, Cornificia. By 28 March 158, however, when Marcus replied, the child was dead, Marcus thanked the temple synod, “even though this turned out otherwise”. The child’s name is unknown. In 159 and 160, Faustina gave birth to daughters: Fadilla, after one of Faustina’s dead sisters, and Cornificia, after Marcus’ dead sister. Antoninus Pius’ last years, 152-61. Antoninus Pius, Marcus’ adoptive father and predecessor as emperor (Glyptothek). Meanwhile, during the reign of his adoptive father, Antoninus, as a prince and future emperor, Marcus’ adoptive brother Lucius Verus received careful education from the famous “grammaticus” Marcus Cornelius Fronto. The young Verus was reported to have been an excellent student, fond of writing poetry and delivering speeches. Lucius started his political career as a quaestor in 153, two years before the legal age of 25 (Marcus held the office at 17). In 154, he was consul, nine years before the legal age of 32 (Marcus held the office at 18 and 23), and in 161 was consul again with Marcus Aurelius as his senior partner. Lucius had no other titles, except that of “son of Augustus”. Lucius had a markedly different personality from Marcus: he enjoyed sports of all kinds, but especially hunting and wrestling; he took obvious pleasure in the circus games and gladiatorial fights. He did not marry until 164. In 156, Antoninus Pius turned 70. He found it difficult to keep himself upright without stays. He started nibbling on dry bread to give him the strength to stay awake through his morning receptions. In 160, Marcus and Lucius were designated joint consuls for the following year. Perhaps Antoninus was already ill; in any case, he died before the year was out. Two days before his death, the biographer reports, Antoninus was at his ancestral estate at Lorium, in Etruria, about 19 kilometres (12 mi) from Rome. He ate Alpine cheese at dinner quite greedily. In the night he vomited; he had a fever the next day. The day after that, 7 March 161, he summoned the imperial council, and passed the state and his daughter to Marcus. The emperor gave the keynote to his life in the last word that he uttered when the tribune of the night-watch came to ask the password-”aequanimitas” (equanimity). He then turned over, as if going to sleep, and died. His death closed out the longest reign since Augustus, surpassing Tiberius by a couple of months. Main article: Emperorship of Marcus Aurelius. Accession of Marcus and Lucius, 161. Lucius Verus, Marcus’ co-emperor from 161 to Verus’ death in 169 (Metropolitan Museum of Art lent by Musée du Louvre). Busts of the co-emperors Marcus Aurelius (left) and Lucius Verus (right), British Museum. After the death of Antoninus Pius, Marcus was effectively sole ruler of the Empire. The formalities of the position would follow. The senate would soon grant him the name Augustus and the title imperator , and he would soon be formally elected as Pontifex Maximus , chief priest of the official cults. Marcus made some show of resistance: the biographer writes that he was “compelled” to take imperial power. This may have been a genuine horror imperii , “fear of imperial power”. Marcus, with his preference for the philosophic life, found the imperial office unappealing. His training as a Stoic, however, had made the choice clear. It was his duty. Although Marcus showed no personal affection for Hadrian (significantly, he does not thank him in the first book of his Meditations), he presumably believed it his duty to enact the man’s succession plans. Thus, although the senate planned to confirm Marcus alone, he refused to take office unless Lucius received equal powers. The senate accepted, granting Lucius the imperium , the tribunician power, and the name Augustus. Marcus became, in official titulature, Imperator Caesar Marcus Aurelius Antoninus Augustus; Lucius, forgoing his name Commodus and taking Marcus’ family name, Verus, became Imperator Caesar Lucius Aurelius Verus Augustus. It was the first time that Rome was ruled by two emperors. In spite of their nominal equality, Marcus held more auctoritas , or “authority”, than Lucius. He had been consul once more than Lucius, he had shared in Antoninus’ administration, and he alone was Pontifex Maximus. It would have been clear to the public which emperor was the more senior. Immediately after their senate confirmation, the emperors proceeded to the Castra Praetoria, the camp of the praetorian guard. Lucius addressed the assembled troops, which then acclaimed the pair as imperatores. Then, like every new emperor since Claudius, Lucius promised the troops a special donative. This donative, however, was twice the size of those past: 20,000 sesterces (5,000 denarii) per capita, with more to officers. In return for this bounty, equivalent to several years’ pay, the troops swore an oath to protect the emperors. Upon his accession he also devalued the Roman currency. He decreased the silver purity of the denarius from 83.5% to 79%-the silver weight dropping from 2.68 grams to 2.57 grams. However, Marcus would later revisit the issue of currency reform. Antoninus Pius’ funeral ceremonies were, in the words of the biographer, “elaborate”. If his funeral followed the pattern of past funerals, his body would have been incinerated on a pyre at the Campus Martius, while his spirit would rise to the gods’ home in the heavens. Marcus and Lucius nominated their father for deification. In contrast to their behavior during Antoninus’ campaign to deify Hadrian, the senate did not oppose the emperors’ wishes. A flamen , or cultic priest, was appointed to minister the cult of the deified Antoninus, now Divus Antoninus. Antoninus Pius’ remains were laid to rest in the Hadrian’s mausoleum, beside the remains of Marcus’ children and of Hadrian himself. The temple he had dedicated to his wife, Diva Faustina, became the Temple of Antoninus and Faustina. It survives as the church of San Lorenzo in Miranda. In accordance with his will, Antoninus’ fortune passed on to Faustina. Marcus had little need of his wife’s fortune. Indeed, at his accession, Marcus transferred part of his mother’s estate to his nephew, Ummius Quadratus. Faustina was three months pregnant at her husband’s accession. During the pregnancy she dreamed of giving birth to two serpents, one fiercer than the other. On 31 August she gave birth at Lanuvium to twins: T. Aurelius Fulvus Antoninus and Lucius Aurelius Commodus. Aside from the fact that the twins shared Caligula’s birthday, the omens were favorable, and the astrologers drew positive horoscopes for the children. The births were celebrated on the imperial coinage. This marble portrait depicts Marcus Aurelius (reigned AD 161-180) The Walters Art Museum. Soon after the emperors’ accession, Marcus’ eleven-year-old daughter, Annia Lucilla, was betrothed to Lucius (in spite of the fact that he was, formally, her uncle). At the ceremonies commemorating the event, new provisions were made for the support of poor children, along the lines of earlier imperial foundations. Marcus and Lucius proved popular with the people of Rome, who strongly approved of their civiliter (“lacking pomp”) behavior. The emperors permitted free speech, evidenced by the fact that the comedy writer Marullus was able to criticize them without suffering retribution. At any other time, under any other emperor, he would have been executed. But it was a peaceful time, a forgiving time. And thus, as the biographer wrote, No one missed the lenient ways of Pius. Marcus replaced a number of the empire’s major officials. The ab epistulis Sextus Caecilius Crescens Volusianus, in charge of the imperial correspondence, was replaced with Titus Varius Clemens. Clemens was from the frontier province of Pannonia and had served in the war in Mauretania. Recently, he had served as procurator of five provinces. He was a man suited for a time of military crisis. Lucius Volusius Maecianus, Marcus’ former tutor, had been prefectural governor of Egypt at Marcus’ accession. Maecianus was recalled, made senator, and appointed prefect of the treasury (aerarium Saturni). He was made consul soon after. Fronto’s son-in-law, Aufidius Victorinus, was appointed governor of Upper Germany. He sent a note to the imperial freedman Charilas, asking if he could call on the emperors. Fronto would later explain that he had not dared to write the emperors directly. The tutor was immensely proud of his students. Reflecting on the speech he had written on taking his consulship in 143, when he had praised the young Marcus, Fronto was ebullient: There was then an outstanding natural ability in you; there is now perfected excellence. There was then a crop of growing corn; there is now a ripe, gathered harvest. What I was hoping for then, I have now. The hope has become a reality. Fronto called on Marcus alone; neither thought to invite Lucius. Tiber Island seen at a forty-year high-water mark of the Tiber, December 2008. Lucius was less esteemed by his tutor than his brother, as his interests were on a lower level. Lucius asked Fronto to adjudicate in a dispute he and his friend Calpurnius were having on the relative merits of two actors. Marcus told Fronto of his reading-Coelius and a little Cicero-and his family. His daughters were in Rome, with their great-great-aunt Matidia; Marcus thought the evening air of the country was too cold for them. He asked Fronto for some particularly eloquent reading matter, something of your own, or Cato, or Cicero, or Sallust or Gracchus-or some poet, for I need distraction, especially in this kind of way, by reading something that will uplift and diffuse my pressing anxieties. Marcus’ early reign proceeded smoothly. Marcus was able to give himself wholly to philosophy and the pursuit of popular affection. Soon, however, Marcus would find he had many anxieties. It would mean the end of the felicitas temporum (“happy times”) that the coinage of 161 had so glibly proclaimed. In the spring of 162, the Tiber overflowed its banks, flooding much of Rome. It drowned many animals, leaving the city in famine. Marcus and Lucius gave the crisis their personal attention. In other times of famine, the emperors are said to have provided for the Italian communities out of the Roman granaries. Fronto’s letters continued through Marcus’ early reign. He believed Marcus was “beginning to feel the wish to be eloquent once more, in spite of having for a time lost interest in eloquence”. Fronto would again remind his pupil of the tension between his role and his philosophic pretensions: Suppose, Caesar, that you can attain to the wisdom of Cleanthes and Zeno, yet, against your will, not the philosopher’s woolen cape. The early days of Marcus’ reign were the happiest of Fronto’s life: his pupil was beloved by the people of Rome, an excellent emperor, a fond pupil, and, perhaps most importantly, as eloquent as could be wished. Marcus had displayed rhetorical skill in his speech to the senate after an earthquake at Cyzicus. It had conveyed the drama of the disaster, and the senate had been awed: “not more suddenly or violently was the city stirred by the earthquake than the minds of your hearers by your speech”. Fronto was hugely pleased. War with Parthia, 161-66. Main article: Roman-Parthian War of 161-66 See also: Roman-Persian Wars Origins to Lucius’ dispatch, 161-62. On his deathbed, Antoninus Pius spoke of nothing but the state and the foreign kings who had wronged him. One of those kings, Vologases IV of Parthia, made his move in late summer or early autumn 161. Vologases entered the Kingdom of Armenia (then a Roman client state), expelled its king and installed his own-Pacorus, an Arsacid like himself. The governor of Cappadocia, the front-line in all Armenian conflicts, was Marcus Sedatius Severianus, a Gaul with much experience in military matters. Convinced by the prophet Alexander of Abonutichus that he could defeat the Parthians easily, and win glory for himself, Severianus led a legion (perhaps the IX Hispana) into Armenia, but was trapped by the great Parthian general Chosrhoes at Elegia, a town just beyond the Cappadocian frontiers, high up past the headwaters of the Euphrates. Severianus made some attempt to fight Chosrhoes, but soon realized the futility of his campaign, and committed suicide. His legion was massacred. The campaign had only lasted three days. Coin of Vologases IV, king of Parthia, from 152/53. There was threat of war on other frontiers as well-in Britain, and in Raetia and Upper Germany, where the Chatti of the Taunus mountains had recently crossed over the limes. Antoninus seems to have given him no military experience; the biographer writes that Marcus spent the whole of Antoninus’ twenty-three-year reign at his emperor’s side-and not in the provinces, where most previous emperors had spent their early careers. More bad news arrived: the Syrian governor’s army had been defeated by the Parthians, and retreated in disarray. Reinforcements were dispatched for the Parthian frontier. Julius Geminius Marcianus, an African senator commanding X Gemina at Vindobona (Vienna), left for Cappadocia with detachments from the Danubian legions. Three full legions were also sent east: I Minervia from Bonn in Upper Germany, II Adiutrix from Aquincum, and V Macedonica from Troesmis. The northern frontiers were strategically weakened; frontier governors were told to avoid conflict wherever possible. Annius Libo, Marcus’ first cousin, was sent to replace the Syrian governor. He was young-his first consulship was in 161, so he was probably in his early thirties-and, as a mere patrician, lacked military experience. Marcus had chosen a reliable man rather than a talented one. Marcus took a four-day public holiday at Alsium, a resort town on the coast of Etruria. He was too anxious to relax. Writing to Fronto, he declared that he would not speak about his holiday. Fronto replied ironically: What? Do I not know that you went to Alsium with the intention of devoting yourself to games, joking, and complete leisure for four whole days? He encouraged Marcus to rest, calling on the example of his predecessors (Antoninus had enjoyed exercise in the palaestra , fishing, and comedy), going so far as to write up a fable about the gods’ division of the day between morning and evening-Marcus had apparently been spending most of his evenings on judicial matters instead of at leisure. Marcus could not take Fronto’s advice. Marcus put on Fronto’s voice to chastise himself:’Much good has my advice done you’, you will say! ” He had rested, and would rest often, but “-this devotion to duty! Who knows better than you how demanding it is! Fronto sent Marcus a selection of reading material, and, to settle his unease over the course of the Parthian war, a long and considered letter, full of historical references. In modern editions of Fronto’s works, it is labeled De bello Parthico (On the Parthian War). There had been reverses in Rome’s past, Fronto writes, but, in the end, Romans had always prevailed over their enemies: “always and everywhere [Mars] has changed our troubles into successes and our terrors into triumphs”. Lucius at Antioch, 162-65. The dissolute Syrian army was said to spend more time in Antioch’s open-air taverns than with their units. Engraving by William Miller after a drawing by H. Warren from a sketch by Captain Byam Martin, R. Over the winter of 161-62, as more bad news arrived-a rebellion was brewing in Syria-it was decided that Lucius should direct the Parthian war in person. He was stronger and healthier than Marcus, the argument went, more suited to military activity. Lucius’ biographer suggests ulterior motives: to restrain Lucius’ debaucheries, to make him thrifty, to reform his morals by the terror of war, to realize that he was an emperor. Whatever the case, the senate gave its assent, and, in the summer of 162, Lucius left. Marcus would remain in Rome; the city “demanded the presence of an emperor”. Lucius spent most of the campaign in Antioch, though he wintered at Laodicea and summered at Daphne, a resort just outside Antioch. Critics declaimed Lucius’ luxurious lifestyle. He had taken to gambling, they said; he would “dice the whole night through”. He enjoyed the company of actors. Libo died early in the war; perhaps Lucius had murdered him. In the middle of the war, perhaps in autumn 163 or early 164, Lucius made a trip to Ephesus to be married to Marcus’ daughter Lucilla. Marcus moved up the date; perhaps he had already heard of Lucius’ mistress, the low-born and beautiful Panthea. Lucilla’s thirteenth birthday was in March 163; whatever the date of her marriage, she was not yet fifteen. Lucilla was accompanied by her mother Faustina and M. Vettulenus Civica Barbarus, the half-brother of Lucius’ father. Civica was made comes Augusti , “companion of the emperors”; perhaps Marcus wanted him to watch over Lucius, the job Libo had failed at. Marcus may have planned to accompany them all the way to Smyrna (the biographer says he told the senate he would); this did not happen. Counterattack and victory, 163-66. The Armenian capital Artaxata was captured in 163. At the end of the year, Verus took the title Armeniacus , despite having never seen combat; Marcus declined to accept the title until the following year. When Lucius was hailed as imperator again, however, Marcus did not hesitate to take the Imperator II with him. The Euphrates river near Raqqa, Syria. Occupied Armenia was reconstructed on Roman terms. In 164, a new capital, Kaine Polis (‘New City’), replaced Artaxata. A new king was installed: a Roman senator of consular rank and Arsacid descent, Gaius Julius Sohaemus. He may not even have been crowned in Armenia; the ceremony may have taken place in Antioch, or even Ephesus. Sohaemus was hailed on the imperial coinage of 164 under the legend Rex armeniis Datus: Lucius sat on a throne with his staff while Sohamenus stood before him, saluting the emperor. In 163, the Parthians intervened in Osroene, a Roman client in upper Mesopotamia centered on Edessa, and installed their own king on its throne. In response, Roman forces were moved downstream, to cross the Euphrates at a more southerly point. Before the end of 163, however, Roman forces had moved north to occupy Dausara and Nicephorium on the northern, Parthian bank. Soon after the conquest of the north bank of the Euphrates, other Roman forces moved on Osroene from Armenia, taking Anthemusia, a town southwest of Edessa. In 165, Roman forces moved on Mesopotamia. Edessa was re-occupied, and Mannus, the king deposed by the Parthians, was re-installed. The Parthians retreated to Nisibis, but this too was besieged and captured. The Parthian army dispersed in the Tigris. A second force, under Avidius Cassius and the III Gallica, moved down the Euphrates, and fought a major battle at Dura. By the end of the year, Cassius’ army had reached the twin metropolises of Mesopotamia: Seleucia on the right bank of the Tigris and Ctesiphon on the left. Ctesiphon was taken and its royal palace set to flame. The citizens of Seleucia, still largely Greek (the city had been commissioned and settled as a capital of the Seleucid Empire, one of Alexander the Great’s successor kingdoms), opened its gates to the invaders. The city got sacked nonetheless, leaving a black mark on Lucius’ reputation. Excuses were sought, or invented: the official version had it that the Seleucids broke faith first. Cassius’ army, although suffering from a shortage of supplies and the effects of a plague contracted in Seleucia, made it back to Roman territory safely. Lucius took the title Parthicus Maximus, and he and Marcus were hailed as imperatores again, earning the title’imp. Lucius took the title’Medicus’, and the emperors were again hailed as imperatores , becoming’imp. IV’ in imperial titulature. Marcus took the Parthicus Maximus now, after another tactful delay. Conclusion of the war and events at Rome, mid-160s-167. A bust of Marcus Aurelius, Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Most of the credit for the war’s success must be ascribed to subordinate generals, the most prominent of which was C. Avidius Cassius, commander of III Gallica, one of the Syrian legions. Cassius was a young senator of low birth from the north Syrian town of Cyrrhus. His father, Heliodorus, had not been a senator, but was nonetheless a man of some standing: he had been Hadrian’s ab epistulis , followed the emperor on his travels, and was prefect of Egypt at the end of Hadrian’s reign. Cassius also, with no small sense of self-worth, claimed descent from the Seleucid kings. Cassius and his fellow commander in the war, Martius Verus, still probably in their mid-thirties, took the consulships for 166. After their consulships, they were made governors: Cassius, of Syria; Martius Verus, of Cappadocia. At Rome, Marcus was occupied with family matters. Matidia, his great-aunt, had died. However, her will was invalid under the lex Falcidia : Matidia had assigned more than three-quarters of her estate to non-relatives. This was because many of her clients were included in codicils to her will. Matidia had never confirmed the documents, but as she was dying, her clients had sealed them in with the original, making them valid. Fronto urged Marcus to push the family’s case, but Marcus demurred, saying his brother would make the final decision. On the return from the campaign, Lucius was awarded with a triumph; the parade was unusual because it included the two emperors, their sons and unmarried daughters as a big family celebration. Marcus Aurelius’ two sons, Commodus, five years old, and Annius Verus, three, were elevated to the status of Caesar for the occasion. The returning army carried with them a plague, afterwards known as the Antonine Plague, or the Plague of Galen, which spread through the Roman Empire between 165 and 180. The disease was a pandemic believed to be either of smallpox or measles, and may have claimed the lives of two Roman emperors-Lucius Verus, who died in 169, and Marcus Aurelius, whose family name, Antoninus, was given to the epidemic. The disease broke out again nine years later, according to the Roman historian Dio Cassius, and caused up to 2,000 deaths a day at Rome, one-quarter of those infected. Total deaths have been estimated at five million. A possible contact with Han China occurred in 166 when a Roman traveller visited the Han court, claiming to be an ambassador representing a certain Andun (Chinese:), ruler of Daqin, who can be identified either with Marcus Aurelius or his predecessor Antoninus Pius. In addition to Republican-era Roman glasswares found at Guangzhou along the South China Sea, Roman golden medallions made during the reign of Antoninus Pius and perhaps even Marcus Aurelius have been found at Óc Eo, Vietnam, then part of the Kingdom of Funan near the Chinese province of Jiaozhi (in northern Vietnam). This may have been the port city of Kattigara, described by Ptolemy c. 150 as being visited by a Greek sailor named Alexander and laying beyond the Golden Chersonese i. Roman coins from the reigns of Tiberius to Aurelian have been found in Xi’an, China (site of the Han capital Chang’an), although the far greater amount of Roman coins in India suggests the Roman maritime trade for purchasing Chinese silk was centered there, not in China or even the overland Silk Road running through Persia. Legal and administrative work, 161-80. Like many emperors, Marcus spent most of his time addressing matters of law such as petitions and hearing disputes; but unlike many of his predecessors, he was already proficient in imperial administration when he assumed power. Marcus took great care in the theory and practice of legislation. Professional jurists called him “an emperor most skilled in the law” and “a most prudent and conscientiously just emperor”. He shows marked interest in three areas of the law: the manumission of slaves, the guardianship of orphans and minors, and the choice of city councillors (decuriones). In 168 he revalued the denarius, increasing the silver purity from 79% to 82% – the actual silver weight increasing from 2.57 grams to 2.67 grams. However, two years later Marcus reverted to the previous values because of the military crises facing the empire. War with Germanic tribes 166-180. The Roman Empire during the reign of Marcus Aurelius. His annexation of lands of the Marcomanni and the Jazyges – perhaps to be provincially called Marcomannia and Sarmatia – was cut short in 175 by the revolt of Avidius Cassius and in 180 by his death. Bas-relief scenes depicting events of the Marcomannic Wars, from the (now destroyed) Arch of Marcus Aurelius in Rome, 176-180 AD, Capitoline Museums. Marcus Aurelius receiving the submission of the vanquished, with raised vexillum standards. Marcus Aurelius celebrating his triumph over Rome’s enemies in 176 AD, riding in a quadriga chariot. During the early 160s, Fronto’s son-in-law Victorinus was stationed as a legate in Germany. He was there with his wife and children (another child had stayed with Fronto and his wife in Rome). The condition on the northern frontier looked grave. A frontier post had been destroyed, and it looked like all the peoples of central and northern Europe were in turmoil. There was corruption among the officers: Victorinus had to ask for the resignation of a legionary legate who was taking bribes. Experienced governors had been replaced by friends and relatives of the imperial family. Dasumius Tullius Tuscus, a distant relative of Hadrian, was in Upper Pannonia, succeeding the experienced M. Lower Pannonia was under the obscure Ti. Servilius Fabianus Maximus was shuffled from Lower Moesia to Upper Moesia when Iallius Bassus had joined Lucius in Antioch. Lower Moesia was filled by Pontius Laelianus’ son. The Dacias were still divided in three, governed by a praetorian senator and two procurators. The peace could not hold long; Lower Pannonia did not even have a legion. Starting in the 160s, Germanic tribes and other nomadic people launched raids along the northern border, particularly into Gaul and across the Danube. This new impetus westwards was probably due to attacks from tribes further east. A first invasion of the Chatti in the province of Germania Superior was repulsed in 162. Far more dangerous was the invasion of 166, when the Marcomanni of Bohemia, clients of the Roman Empire since year 19, crossed the Danube together with the Lombards and other Germanic tribes. Soon thereafter, the Iranian Sarmatians attacked between the Danube and the Theiss rivers. Due to the situation in the East, only a punitive expedition could be launched in 167. Both Marcus and Verus led the troops. After the death of Verus (169), Marcus personally led the struggle against the Germanic tribes for most of his remaining life. The Romans suffered at least two serious defeats by the Quadi and Marcomanni, who would cross the Alps, ravage Opitergium (Oderzo) and besiege Aquileia, the main Roman city of north-east Italy. At the same time the Costoboci, coming from the Carpathian area, invaded Moesia, Macedonia and Greece. After a long struggle, Marcus Aurelius managed to push back the invaders. Numerous members of Germanic tribes settled in frontier regions like Dacia, Pannonia, Germany and Italy itself. This was not a new thing, but this time the numbers of settlers required the creation of two new frontier provinces on the left shore of the Danube, Sarmatia and Marcomannia, including today’s Czech Republic, Slovakia and Hungary. Some Germanic tribes who settled in Ravenna revolted and managed to seize possession of the city. For this reason, Marcus Aurelius decided not only against bringing more barbarians into Italy, but even banished those who had previously been brought there. The emperor’s plans were prevented by an usurpation in 175 of the governor of Syria, Avidius Cassius, which was prompted by false news of the death of Marcus after an illness. The rebellion quickly gathered support in the Eastern provinces, only Cappadocia and Bithynia did not side with the rebels. When it became clear that Marcus Aurelius was still alive, Cassius’ fortunes declined quickly and he was killed by his troops after only 100 days of power. Together with his wife Faustina, Marcus Aurelius toured the eastern provinces until 173. He visited Athens, declaring himself a protector of philosophy. After a triumph in Rome, the following year he marched again to the Danubian frontier. After a decisive victory in 178, the plan to annex Moravia and West Slovakia seemed poised for success but was abandoned after Marcus Aurelius again fell ill in 180. Death and succession 180. Bronze statue of Marcus Aurelius, piazza del Campidoglio in Rome. Equestrian statue of Marcus Aurelius, Rome. Marcus Aurelius died on 17 March 180, in the city of Vindobona (modern Vienna). His campaigns against Germans and Sarmatians were also commemorated by a column and a temple built in Rome. He was succeeded by his son Commodus, whom he had named Caesar in 166 and with whom he had jointly ruled since 177. It was only the second time that a “non-adoptive” son was chosen as heir to the throne. The only other having been a century earlier when Vespasian was succeeded by his son Titus. Historians have criticized the decision, citing Commodus’ erratic behavior and lack of political and military acumen. At the end of his history of Marcus’ reign, Cassius Dio wrote an encomium to the emperor, and described the transition to Commodus in his own lifetime with sorrow. [Marcus] did not meet with the good fortune that he deserved, for he was not strong in body and was involved in a multitude of troubles throughout practically his entire reign. But for my part, I admire him all the more for this very reason, that amid unusual and extraordinary difficulties he both survived himself and preserved the empire. Just one thing prevented him from being completely happy, namely, that after rearing and educating his son in the best possible way he was vastly disappointed in him. This matter must be our next topic; for our history now descends from a kingdom of gold to one of iron and rust, as affairs did for the Romans of that day. Cassius Dio 71.36.3-4. Michael Grant, in The Climax of Rome (1968), writes of Commodus. The youth turned out to be very erratic, or at least so anti-traditional that disaster was inevitable. But whether or not Marcus ought to have known this to be so, the rejections of his son’s claims in favour of someone else would almost certainly have involved one of the civil wars which were to proliferate so disastrously around future successions. Castings of the busts of Antonius Pius (left), Marcus Aurelius (center), and Clodius Albinus (right), Pushkin Museum, Moscow. Marcus Aurelius acquired the reputation of a philosopher king within his lifetime, and the title would remain his after death; both Dio and the biographer call him “the philosopher”. Christians such as Justin Martyr, Athenagoras and Melito gave him the title, too. The last named went so far as to call Marcus Aurelius “more philanthropic and philosophic” than Antoninus Pius and Hadrian, and set him against the persecuting emperors Domitian and Nero to make the contrast bolder. “Alone of the emperors, ” wrote the historian Herodian, he gave proof of his learning not by mere words or knowledge of philosophical doctrines but by his blameless character and temperate way of life. Iain King concludes Marcus Aurelius’ legacy is tragic, because the emperor’s “Stoic philosophy – which is about self-restraint, duty, and respect for others – was so abjectly abandoned by the imperial line he anointed on his death”. In the 1964 movie The Fall of the Roman Empire he was portrayed by Alec Guinness and in the 2000 movie Gladiator by Richard Harris. Both movie plots posited that Marcus Aurelius was assassinated because he intended to pass down power to his adopted son, a Roman general, instead of his biological son, Commodus. In the first two centuries of the Christian era, it was local Roman officials who were largely responsible for persecution of Christians. In the second century, the emperors treated Christianity as a local problem to be dealt with by their subordinates. The number and severity of persecutions of Christians in various locations of the empire seemingly increased during the reign of Marcus Aurelius. The extent to which Marcus Aurelius himself directed, encouraged, or was aware of these persecutions is unclear and much debated by historians. According to Gibbon, with the onset of the Germanic war, his treatment of the Christians degraded with increased persecutions uncharacteristic of the previous years of his reign and those of his predecessors. Bust of Faustina the Younger, Louvre, Paris. Aurelius married his first cousin Faustina the Younger in 145. During their 30-year marriage, Faustina bore 13 children. Only one son and four daughters outlived their father. Annia Aurelia Galeria Faustina (147-after 165). Gemellus Lucillae (died around 150), twin brother of Lucilla. Annia Aurelia Galeria Lucilla (148/50-182), twin sister of Gemellus, married her father’s co-ruler Lucius Verus. Titus Aelius Antoninus (born after 150, died before 7 March 161). Titus Aelius Aurelius (born after 150, died before 7 March 161). Domitia Faustina (born after 150, died before 7 March 161). Annia Aurelia Fadilla (159-after 211). Annia Cornificia Faustina Minor (160-after 211). Titus Aurelius Fulvus Antoninus (161-165), twin brother of Commodus. Lucius Aurelius Commodus Antoninus (Commodus) (161-192), twin brother of Titus Aurelius Fulvus Antoninus, later emperor. Marcus Annius Verus Caesar (162-169). Vibia Aurelia Sabina (170-died before 217). While on campaign between 170 and 180, Aurelius wrote his Meditations in Greek as a source for his own guidance and self-improvement. The original title of this work, if it had one, is unknown. “Meditations” as well as others, including “To Himself” were adopted later. He had a logical mind and his notes were representative of Stoic philosophy and spirituality. Meditations is still revered as a literary monument to a government of service and duty. The book was a favourite of Frederick the Great, John Stuart Mill, Matthew Arnold, and Goethe. Modern figures such as Wen Jiabao, Bill Clinton, and James Mattis are admirers of the book. It is not known how far Marcus’ writings were circulated after his death. There are stray references in the ancient literature to the popularity of his precepts, and Julian the Apostate was well aware of Marcus’ reputation as a philosopher, though he does not specifically mention the Meditations. It survived in the scholarly traditions of the Eastern Church and the first surviving quotes of the book, as well as the first known reference of it by name (“Marcus’ writings to himself”) are from Arethas of Caesarea in the 10th century and in the Byzantine Suda (perhaps inserted by Arethas himself). It was first published in 1558 in Zurich by Wilhelm Xylander (ne Holzmann), from a manuscript reportedly lost shortly afterwards. The oldest surviving complete manuscript copy is in the Vatican library and dates to the 14th century. World-renowned expert numismatist, enthusiast, author and dealer in authentic ancient Greek, ancient Roman, ancient Byzantine, world coins & more. Ilya Zlobin is an independent individual who has a passion for coin collecting, research and understanding the importance of the historical context and significance all coins and objects represent. Send me a message about this and I can update your invoice should you want this method. Getting your order to you, quickly and securely is a top priority and is taken seriously here. Great care is taken in packaging and mailing every item securely and quickly. What is a certificate of authenticity and what guarantees do you give that the item is authentic? You will be very 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. Additionally, the coin is inside it’s own protective coin flip (holder), with a 2×2 inch description of the coin matching the individual number on the COA. 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  • Composition: Silver
  • Ruler: Marcus Aurelius

Nov 30 2018

NERO Authentic Ancient 64AD Rome Genuine Original Silver Roman Coin NGC i72340

NERO Authentic Ancient 64AD Rome Genuine Original Silver Roman Coin NGC i72340

NERO Authentic Ancient 64AD Rome Genuine Original Silver Roman Coin NGC i72340

NERO Authentic Ancient 64AD Rome Genuine Original Silver Roman Coin NGC i72340

NERO Authentic Ancient 64AD Rome Genuine Original Silver Roman Coin NGC i72340

Item: i72340 Authentic Ancient Coin of. Silver Denarius 17mm (3.53 grams) Rome, struck 64-68 A. Reference: RIC 153 Certification: NGC Ancients. VF Strike: 4/5 Surface: 4/5 4681652-002 IMP NERO CAESAR AVGVSTVS Laureate head of Nero right. IVPPITER CVSTOS Jupiter seated left, bare to the waist, holding thunderbolt and scepter. Numismatic Note: The epithet to Jupiter of “CVSTOS” means one who saves or preserves. Nero prefered not to feature the god on most other coins he issued. It is probable that he consecrates Jupiter Custos on this coin as he was preserved from the conspiracy of Piso. The dagger of Scevinus, the perpetrator of the attempted act to take Nero out was actually consecrated by the emperor to Jupiter Vindex in the Capitolium. In Roman mythology, Jupiter or Jove was the king of the gods, and the god of sky and thunder. He is the equivalent of Zeus in the Greek pantheon. He was called Iuppiter (or Diespiter) Optimus Maximus (“Father God the Best and Greatest”). As the patron deity of ancient Rome, he ruled over laws and social order. He was the chief god of the Capitoline Triad, with sister/wife Juno. Jupiter is also the father of the god Mars with Juno. Therefore, Jupiter is the grandfather of Romulus and Remus, the legendary founders of Rome. Jupiter was venerated in ancient Roman religion, and is still venerated in Roman Neopaganism. He is a son of Saturn, along with brothers Neptune and Pluto. He is also the brother/husband of Ceres (daughter of Saturn and mother of Proserpina), brother of Veritas (daughter of Saturn), and father of Mercury. Caesar, 50-54 (Under Claudius). Nero (Latin: Nero Claudius Caesar Augustus Germanicus ;15 December 37 – 9 June 68) was Roman Emperor from 54 to 68, and the last in the Julio-Claudian dynasty. Nero was adopted by his great uncle Claudius to become his heir and successor, and succeeded to the throne in 54 following Claudius’ death. During his reign, Nero focused much of his attention on diplomacy, trade, and enhancing the cultural life of the Empire. He ordered theaters built and promoted athletic games. During his reign, the redoubtable general Corbulo conducted a successful war and negotiated peace with the Parthian Empire. His general Suetonius Paulinus crushed a revolt in Britain. Nero annexed the Bosporan Kingdom to the Empire and began the First Roman-Jewish War. In 64, most of Rome was destroyed in the Great Fire of Rome, which many Romans believed Nero himself had started in order to clear land for his planned palatial complex, the Domus Aurea. In 68, the rebellion of Vindex in Gaul and later the acclamation of Galba in Hispania drove Nero from the throne. Facing assassination, he committed suicide on 9 June 68 (the first Roman emperor to do so) His death ended the Julio-Claudian Dynasty, sparking a brief period of civil wars known as the Year of the Four Emperors. Nero’s rule is often associated with tyranny and extravagance. He is known for many executions, including that of his mother, and the probable murder by poison of his stepbrother Britannicus. He is infamously known as the Emperor who “fiddled while Rome burned” and as an early persecutor of Christians. He was known for having captured Christians to burn them in his garden at night for a source of light. This view is based on the writings of Tacitus, Suetonius, and Cassius Dio, the main surviving sources for Nero’s reign. Few surviving sources paint Nero in a favorable light. Some sources, though, including some mentioned above, portray him as an emperor who was popular with the common Roman people, especially in the East. Some modern historians question the reliability of ancient sources when reporting on Nero’s tyrannical acts. Lucius Domitius Ahenobarbus , the future Nero, was born on 15 December 37 in Antium, near Rome. He was the only son of Gnaeus Domitius Ahenobarbus and Agrippina the Younger, sister of Emperor Caligula. Nero’s father Gnaeus was the son of Lucius Domitius Ahenobarbus (consul 16 BC) and Antonia Major. Gnaeus was thus the grandson of Gnaeus Domitius Ahenobarbus (consul 32 BC) and probably Aemilia Lepida on his father’s side, and the grandson of Mark Antony and Octavia Minor on his mother’s side. Thus, Nero had as his paternal grandmother Antonia Maior, and also claimed more remote descent from Antonia Minor as a great-grandson-later grandson after Claudius adopted him. Through Octavia, Nero was the grandnephew of Caesar Augustus. Nero’s father had been employed as a praetor and was a member of Caligula’s staff when the latter traveled to the East (some apparently think Suetonius refers to Augustus’ adopted son Gaius Caesar here, but this is not likely). Nero’s father was described by Suetonius as a murderer and a cheat who was charged by Emperor Tiberius with treason, adultery, and incest. Tiberius died, allowing him to escape these charges. Nero’s father died of edema (“dropsy”) in 39 when Nero was two. Nero’s mother was Agrippina the Younger, a great-granddaughter of Caesar Augustus and his wife Scribonia through their daughter Julia the Elder and her husband Marcus Vipsanius Agrippa. Agrippina’s father, Germanicus, was a grandson of Augustus’s wife, Livia, on one side and to Mark Antony and Octavia on the other. Germanicus’ mother Antonia Minor, was a daughter of Octavia Minor and Mark Antony. Octavia was Augustus’ elder sister. Germanicus was also the adopted son of Tiberius. Agrippina poisoned her second husband Passienus Crispus, so many ancient historians also accuse her of murdering her third husband, the emperor Claudius. Coin issued under Claudius celebrating young Nero as the future emperor, c. Nero was not expected to become Emperor because his maternal uncle, Caligula, had begun his reign at the age of 25 with enough time to produce his own heir. Nero’s mother, Agrippina, lost favor with Caligula and was exiled in 39 after her husband’s death. Caligula seized Nero’s inheritance and sent him to be raised by his less wealthy aunt, Domitia Lepida, who was the mother of Valeria Messalina, Claudius’s third wife. Caligula, his wife Caesonia and their infant daughter Julia Drusilla were murdered on 24 January 41. These events led Claudius, Caligula’s uncle, to become emperor. Claudius allowed Agrippina to return from exile. Claudius had married twice before marrying Valeria Messalina. His previous marriages produced three children including a son, Drusus, who died at a young age. He had two children with Messalina – Claudia Octavia (born 40) and Britannicus (born 41). Messalina was executed by Claudius in the year 48. In 49 AD, Claudius married a fourth time, to Nero’s mother Agrippina. To aid Claudius politically, young Nero was adopted in 50 and took the name Nero Claudius Caesar Drusus Germanicus. Nero was older than his stepbrother Britannicus, and thus became heir to the throne. Nero was proclaimed an adult in 51 at the age of 14. He was appointed proconsul, entered and first addressed the Senate, made joint public appearances with Claudius, and was featured in coinage. In 53, he married his stepsister Claudia Octavia. Agrippina crowns her young son Nero with a laurel wreath. She carries a cornucopia, symbol of fortune and plenty, and he wears the armour and cloak of a Roman commander, with a helmet on the ground at his feet. The scene refers to Nero’s accession as emperor in 54 AD and is dated before 59 AD when Nero had Agrippina murdered. Claudius died in 54 and Nero, taking the name Nero Claudius Caesar Augustus Germanicus , was established as Emperor. Though accounts vary, many ancient historians state Agrippina poisoned Claudius. According to Pliny the Elder, she used poison mushrooms. It is not known how much Nero knew or if he was even involved in the death of Claudius. For even if he was not the instigator of the emperor’s death, he was at least privy to it, as he openly admitted; for he used afterwards to laud mushrooms, the vehicle in which the poison was administered to Claudius, as “the food of the gods, ” as the Greek proverb has it. At any rate, after Claudius’ death he vented on him every kind of insult, in act and word, charging him now with folly and now with cruelty; for it was a favourite joke of his to say that Claudius had ceased to play the fool among mortals, lengthening the first syllable of the word morari, and he disregarded many of his decrees and acts as the work of a madman and a dotard. Finally, he neglected to enclose the place where his body was burned except with a low and mean wall. Nero became Emperor at 17 when the news of Claudius’ death was made known, the youngest emperor until that time. Ancient historians describe Nero’s early reign as being strongly influenced by his mother, Agrippina, his tutor Lucius Annaeus Seneca, and the Praetorian Prefect Sextus Afranius Burrus, especially in the first year. Other tutors were less often mentioned, such as Alexander of Aegae. Very early in Nero’s rule, problems arose from competition for influence between Agrippina and Nero’s two main advisers, Seneca and Burrus. In 54, Agrippina tried to sit down next to Nero while he met with an Armenian envoy, but Seneca stopped her and prevented a scandalous scene (as it was unimaginable at that time for a woman to be in the same room as men doing official business). Nero’s friends also mistrusted Agrippina and told Nero to beware of his mother. Nero was reportedly unsatisfied with his marriage to Octavia and entered into an affair with Claudia Acte, a former slave. In 55, Agrippina attempted to intervene in favor of Octavia and demanded that her son dismiss Acte. Nero, with the support of Seneca, resisted the intervention of his mother in his personal affairs. With Agrippina’s influence over her son severed, she reportedly began pushing for Britannicus, Nero’s stepbrother, to become emperor. Nearly fifteen-year-old Britannicus, heir-designate prior to Nero’s adoption, was still legally a minor, but was approaching legal adulthood. According to Tacitus, Agrippina hoped that with her support, Britannicus, being the blood son of Claudius, would be seen as the true heir to the throne by the state over Nero. However, the youth died suddenly and suspiciously on 12 February 55, the very day before his proclamation as an adult had been set. Nero claimed that Britannicus died from an epileptic seizure, but ancient historians all claim Britannicus’ death came from Nero’s poisoning him. Supposedly, he enlisted the services of Locusta, a woman who specialized in the manufacture of poisons. She devised a mixture to kill Britannicus, but after testing it unsuccessfully on a slave, Nero angrily threatened to have her put to death if she did not come up with something usable. Locusta then devised a new concoction that she promised would kill swifter than a viper. Her promise was fulfilled after Britannicus consumed it at a dinner party from water used to cool his wine, which had already been tasted, and succumbed within minutes. After the death of Britannicus, Agrippina was accused of slandering Octavia and Nero ordered her out of the imperial residence. Matricide and consolidation of power. Coin of Nero and Poppaea Sabina. Over time, Nero became progressively more powerful, freeing himself of his advisers and eliminating rivals to the throne. In 55, he removed Marcus Antonius Pallas, an ally of Agrippina, from his position in the treasury. Pallas, along with Burrus, was accused of conspiring against the Emperor to bring Faustus Sulla to the throne. Seneca was accused of having relations with Agrippina and embezzlement. Seneca succeeded in having himself, Pallas and Burrus acquitted. According to Cassius Dio, at this time, Seneca and Burrus reduced their role in governing from careful management to mere moderation of Nero. In 58, Nero became romantically involved with Poppaea Sabina, the wife of his friend and future emperor Otho. Reportedly because a marriage to Poppaea and a divorce from Octavia did not seem politically feasible with Agrippina alive, Nero ordered the murder of his mother in 59. A number of modern historians find this an unlikely motive as Nero did not marry Poppaea until 62. Additionally, according to Suetonius, Poppaea did not divorce her husband until after Agrippina’s death, making it unlikely that the already married Poppaea would be pressing Nero for marriage. Some modern historians theorize that Nero’s execution of Agrippina was prompted by her plotting to set Rubellius Plautus on the throne. According to Suetonius, Nero tried to kill his mother through a planned shipwreck, which took the life of her friend, Acerronia Polla, but when Agrippina survived, he had her executed and framed it as a suicide. The incident is also recorded by Tacitus. The Remorse of the Emperor Nero after the Murder of his Mother , by John William Waterhouse, 1878. In 62, Nero’s adviser, Burrus, died. Additionally, Seneca was again faced with embezzlement charges. Seneca asked Nero for permission to retire from public affairs. Nero divorced and banished Octavia on grounds of infertility, leaving him free to marry the pregnant Poppaea. After public protests, Nero was forced to allow Octavia to return from exile, but she was executed shortly after her return. Nero also was reported to have kicked Poppaea to death in 65 before she could have his second child. However, modern historians, noting Suetonius, Tacitus and Cassius Dio’s possible bias against Nero and the likelihood that they did not have eyewitness accounts of private events, postulate that Poppaea may have died because of complications of miscarriage or childbirth. Accusations of treason being plotted against Nero and the Senate first appeared in 62. The Senate ruled that Antistius, a praetor, should be put to death for speaking ill of Nero at a party. Later, Nero ordered the exile of Fabricius Veiento who slandered the Senate in a book. Tacitus writes that the roots of the conspiracy led by Gaius Calpurnius Piso began in this year. To consolidate power, Nero executed a number of people in 62 and 63 including his rivals Pallas, Rubellius Plautus and Faustus Sulla. According to Suetonius, Nero “showed neither discrimination nor moderation in putting to death whomsoever he pleased” during this period. Nero’s consolidation of power also included a slow usurping of authority from the Senate. In 54, Nero promised to give the Senate powers equivalent to those under Republican rule. By 65, senators complained that they had no power left and this led to the Pisonian conspiracy. When Nero’s wife Poppaea Sabina died in 65, Nero went into deep mourning. Her body was not cremated, it was stuffed with spices, embalmed and put in the Mausoleum of Augustus. She was given a state funeral. Nero praised her during the funeral eulogy and gave her divine honors. It is said that Nero burned ten years’ worth of Arabia’s incense production at her funeral. In the beginning of 66, he married Statilia Messalina. She was already married when she became Nero’s mistress in 65 AD, with Statilia’s husband being driven to suicide in 66, so Nero could marry Statilia. She was one of the few of Nero’s courtiers who survived the fall of his reign. In 67, Nero ordered a young freedman, Sporus, to be castrated and then married him. According to Dion Cassius, Sporus bore an uncanny resemblance to Sabina, and Nero even called him by his dead wife’s name. Over the course of his reign, Nero often made rulings that pleased the lower class. Nero was criticized as being obsessed with personal popularity. Nero began his reign in 54 by promising the Senate more autonomy. In this first year, he forbade others to refer to him with regard to enactments, for which he was praised by the Senate. Nero was known for spending his time visiting brothels and taverns during this period. In 55, Nero began taking on a more active role as an administrator. He was consul four times between 55 and 60. During this period, some ancient historians speak fairly well of Nero and contrast it with his later rule. Under Nero, restrictions were put on the amount of bail and fines. There was a discussion in the Senate on the misconduct of the freedmen class, and a strong demand was made that patrons should have the right of revoking freedom. Nero supported the freedmen and ruled that patrons had no such right. The Senate tried to pass a law in which the crimes of one slave applied to all slaves within a household. Despite riots from the people, Nero supported the Senate on their measure, and deployed troops to organise the execution of 400 slaves affected by the law. However, he vetoed strong measures against the freedmen affected by the case. Nero banned any magistrate or procurator from exhibiting public entertainment for fear that the venue was being used as a method to sway the populace. Additionally, there were many impeachments and removals of government officials along with arrests for extortion and corruption. The Senate convinced him this action would bankrupt the public treasury. In imitation of the Greeks, Nero built a number of gymnasiums and theatres. Enormous gladiatorial shows were also held. Nero also established the quinquennial Neronia. The festival included games, poetry, and theater. Historians indicate that there was a belief that theatre led to immorality. Others considered that to have performers dressed in Greek clothing was old fashioned. Some questioned the large public expenditure on entertainment. In 64, Rome burned. Nero enacted a public relief effort as well as significant reconstruction. A number of other major construction projects occurred in Nero’s late reign. Nero had the marshes of Ostia filled with rubble from the fire. He erected the large Domus Aurea. In 67, Nero attempted to have a canal dug at the Isthmus of Corinth. Ancient historians state that these projects and others exacerbated the drain on the State’s budget. The cost to rebuild Rome was immense, requiring funds the state treasury did not have. Nero devalued the Roman currency for the first time in the Empire’s history. He reduced the weight of the denarius from 84 per Roman pound to 96 (3.85 grams to 3.35 grams). He also reduced the silver purity from 99.5% to 93.5%-the silver weight dropping from 3.83 grams to 3.4 grams. Furthermore, Nero reduced the weight of the aureus from 40 per Roman pound to 45 (8 grams to 7.2 grams). Between 62 and 67, according to Plinius the Elder and Seneca, Nero promoted an expedition to discover the sources of the Nile River. It was the first exploration of equatorial Africa from Europe in history. However, Nero’s expedition up the Nile failed because water plants had clogged the river, denying Nero’s vessels access to the Sudd of Nubia. The economic policy of Nero is a point of debate among scholars. Modern historians, though, note that the period was riddled with deflation and that it is likely that Nero’s spending came in the form of public works projects and charity intended to ease economic troubles. Great Fire of Rome (64 AD). The Great Fire of Rome erupted on the night of 18 July to 19 July 64. Artwork depicting the Great Fire of Rome. The extent of the fire is uncertain. According to Tacitus, who was nine at the time of the fire, it spread quickly and burned for over five days. It destroyed three of fourteen Roman districts and severely damaged seven. The only other historian who lived through the period and mentioned the fire is Pliny the Elder, who wrote about it in passing. Other historians who lived through the period (including Josephus, Dio Chrysostom, Plutarch, and Epictetus) make no mention of it in what remains of their work. It is uncertain who or what actually caused the fire-whether accident or arson. Suetonius and Cassius Dio favor Nero as the arsonist, so he could build a palatial complex. Tacitus mentions that Christians confessed to the crime, but it is not known whether these confessions were induced by torture. However, accidental fires were common in ancient Rome. In fact, Rome suffered another large fire in 69 and in 80. It was said by Suetonius and Cassius Dio that Nero sang the “Sack of Ilium” in stage costume while the city burned. Popular legend claims that Nero played the fiddle at the time of the fire, an anachronism based merely on the concept of the lyre, a stringed instrument associated with Nero and his performances. There were no fiddles in 1st-century Rome. Tacitus’s account, however, has Nero in Antium at the time of the fire. Tacitus also said that Nero playing his lyre and singing while the city burned was only rumor. Nero’s contributions to the relief extended to personally taking part in the search for and rescue of victims of the blaze, spending days searching the debris without even his bodyguards. After the fire, Nero opened his palaces to provide shelter for the homeless, and arranged for food supplies to be delivered in order to prevent starvation among the survivors. In the wake of the fire, he made a new urban development plan. Houses after the fire were spaced out, built in brick, and faced by porticos on wide roads. Nero also built a new palace complex known as the Domus Aurea in an area cleared by the fire. This included lush artificial landscapes and a 30-meter-tall statue of himself, the Colossus of Nero. The size of this complex is debated (from 100 to 300 acres). To find the necessary funds for the reconstruction, tributes were imposed on the provinces of the empire. Tacitus notes that the population searched for a scapegoat and rumors held Nero responsible. To deflect blame, Nero targeted Christians. He ordered Christians to be thrown to dogs, while others were crucified and burned. Nero enjoyed driving a one-horse chariot, singing to the lyre, and poetry. He even composed songs that were performed by other entertainers throughout the empire. At first, Nero only performed for a private audience. Nero began singing in public in Neapolis in order to improve his popularity. He also sang at the second quinquennial Neronia in 65. It was said that Nero craved the attention, but historians also write that Nero was encouraged to sing and perform in public by the Senate, his inner circle and the people. Ancient historians strongly criticize his choice to perform, calling it shameful. Nero was convinced to participate in the Olympic Games of 67 in order to improve relations with Greece and display Roman dominance. As a competitor, Nero raced a ten-horse chariot and nearly died after being thrown from it. He also performed as an actor and a singer. The victories are attributed to Nero bribing the judges and his status as emperor. War and peace with Parthia. Shortly after Nero’s accession to the throne in 54, the Roman vassal kingdom of Armenia overthrew their Iberian prince Rhadamistus and he was replaced with the Parthian prince Tiridates. This was seen as a Parthian invasion of Roman territory. There was concern in Rome over how the young Emperor would handle the situation. Nero reacted by immediately sending the military to the region under the command of Gnaeus Domitius Corbulo. The Parthians temporarily relinquished control of Armenia to Rome. The peace did not last and full-scale war broke out in 58. The Parthian king Vologases I refused to remove his brother Tiridates from Armenia. The Parthians began a full-scale invasion of the Armenian kingdom. Commander Corbulo responded and repelled most of the Parthian army that same year. Tiridates retreated and Rome again controlled most of Armenia. Nero was acclaimed in public for this initial victory. Tigranes, a Cappadocian noble raised in Rome, was installed by Nero as the new ruler of Armenia. Corbulo was appointed governor of Syria as a reward. In 62, Tigranes invaded the Parthian province of Adiabene. Again, Rome and Parthia were at war and this continued until 63. Parthia began building up for a strike against the Roman province of Syria. Corbulo tried to convince Nero to continue the war, but Nero opted for a peace deal instead. There was anxiety in Rome about eastern grain supplies and a budget deficit. The result was a deal where Tiridates again became the Armenian king, but was crowned in Rome by Emperor Nero. In the future, the king of Armenia was to be a Parthian prince, but his appointment required approval from the Romans. Tiridates was forced to come to Rome and partake in ceremonies meant to display Roman dominance. This peace deal of 63 was a considerable victory for Nero politically. Nero became very popular in the eastern provinces of Rome and with the Parthians as well. The peace between Parthia and Rome lasted 50 years until Emperor Trajan of Rome invaded Armenia in 114. Other major power struggles and rebellions. A plaster bust of Nero, Pushkin Museum, Moscow. The war with Parthia was not Nero’s only major war but he was both criticized and praised for an aversion to battle. Like many emperors, Nero faced a number of rebellions and power struggles within the empire. British Revolt of 60-61 (Boudica’s Uprising). In 60, a major rebellion broke out in the province of Britannia. While the governor Gaius Suetonius Paullinus and his troops were busy capturing the island of Mona (Anglesey) from the druids, the tribes of the southeast staged a revolt led by queen Boudica of the Iceni. Boudica and her troops destroyed three cities before the army of Paullinus could return, receive reinforcements, and quell the rebellion in 61. Fearing Paullinus himself would provoke further rebellion, Nero replaced him with the more passive Publius Petronius Turpilianus. The Pisonian Conspiracy of 65. In 65, Gaius Calpurnius Piso, a Roman statesman, organized a conspiracy against Nero with the help of Subrius Flavus and Sulpicius Asper, a tribune and a centurion of the Praetorian Guard. According to Tacitus, many conspirators wished to “rescue the state” from the emperor and restore the Republic. The freedman Milichus discovered the conspiracy and reported it to Nero’s secretary, Epaphroditos. As a result, the conspiracy failed and its members were executed including Lucan, the poet. Nero’s previous advisor, Seneca was ordered to commit suicide after admitting he discussed the plot with the conspirators. The First Jewish War of 66-70. In 66, there was a Jewish revolt in Judea stemming from Greek and Jewish religious tension. In 67, Nero dispatched Vespasian to restore order. This revolt was eventually put down in 70, after Nero’s death. This revolt is famous for Romans breaching the walls of Jerusalem and destroying the Second Temple of Jerusalem. The revolt of Vindex and Galba and the death of Nero. Lucius Verginius Rufus, the governor of Germania Superior, was ordered to put down Vindex’s rebellion. In an attempt to gain support from outside his own province, Vindex called upon Servius Sulpicius Galba, the governor of Hispania Tarraconensis, to join the rebellion and further, to declare himself emperor in opposition to Nero. At the Battle of Vesontio in May 68, Verginius’ forces easily defeated those of Vindex and the latter committed suicide. However, after putting down this one rebel, Verginius’ legions attempted to proclaim their own commander as Emperor. Verginius refused to act against Nero, but the discontent of the legions of Germany and the continued opposition of Galba in Spain did not bode well for Nero. While Nero had retained some control of the situation, support for Galba increased despite his being officially declared a public enemy. The prefect of the Praetorian Guard, Gaius Nymphidius Sabinus, also abandoned his allegiance to the Emperor and came out in support for Galba. In response, Nero fled Rome with the intention of going to the port of Ostia and, from there, to take a fleet to one of the still-loyal eastern provinces. However, he abandoned the idea when some army officers openly refused to obey his commands, responding with a line from Vergil’s Aeneid : Is it so dreadful a thing then to die? ” Nero then toyed with the idea of fleeing to Parthia, throwing himself upon the mercy of Galba, or to appeal to the people and beg them to pardon him for his past offences “and if he could not soften their hearts, to entreat them at least to allow him the prefecture of Egypt. Suetonius reports that the text of this speech was later found in Nero’s writing desk, but that he dared not give it from fear of being torn to pieces before he could reach the Forum. After sleeping, he awoke at about midnight to find the palace guard had left. Dispatching messages to his friends’ palace chambers for them to come, he received no answers. Upon going to their chambers personally, he found them all abandoned. When he called for a gladiator or anyone else adept with a sword to kill him, no one appeared. He cried, Have I neither friend nor foe? And ran out as if to throw himself into the Tiber. Returning, Nero sought for some place where he could hide and collect his thoughts. An imperial freedman, Phaon, offered his villa, located 4 miles outside the city. Travelling in disguise, Nero and four loyal freedman, Epaphroditos, Phaon, Neophytus, and Sporus, reached the villa, where Nero ordered them to dig a grave for him. At this time, a courier arrived with a report that the Senate had declared Nero a public enemy and that it was their intention to execute him by beating him to death. At this news, Nero prepared himself for suicide. Losing his nerve, he first begged for one of his companions to set an example by first killing himself. At last, the sound of approaching horsemen drove Nero to face the end. However, he still could not bring himself to take his own life but instead he forced his private secretary, Epaphroditos, to perform the task. Nero’s famous dying words were “Qualis artifex pereo, ” which translates into English as What an artist dies in me! Events and revolts leading up to Nero’s death are portrayed in the 1951 film, Quo Vadis, with Peter Ustinov playing Nero. When one of the horsemen entered, upon his seeing Nero all but dead he attempted to stop the bleeding in vain. Nero died on 9 June 68, the anniversary of the death of Octavia, and was buried in the Mausoleum of the Domitii Ahenobarbi, in what is now the Villa Borghese (Pincian Hill) area of Rome. With his death, the Julio-Claudian dynasty ended. Chaos ensued in the year of the Four Emperors. According to Suetonius and Cassius Dio, the people of Rome celebrated the death of Nero. Tacitus, though, describes a more complicated political environment. Tacitus mentions that Nero’s death was welcomed by Senators, nobility and the upper class. The lower-class, slaves, frequenters of the arena and the theater, and “those who were supported by the famous excesses of Nero”, on the other hand, were upset with the news. Members of the military were said to have mixed feelings, as they had allegiance to Nero, but were bribed to overthrow him. Eastern sources, namely Philostratus II and Apollonius of Tyana, mention that Nero’s death was mourned as he “restored the liberties of Hellas with a wisdom and moderation quite alien to his character” and that he held our liberties in his hand and respected them. Modern scholarship generally holds that, while the Senate and more well-off individuals welcomed Nero’s death, the general populace was loyal to the end and beyond, for Otho and Vitellius both thought it worthwhile to appeal to their nostalgia. Nero’s name was erased from some monuments, in what Edward Champlin regards as an “outburst of private zeal”. Many portraits of Nero were reworked to represent other figures; according to Eric R. Varner, over fifty such images survive. This reworking of images is often explained as part of the way in which the memory of disgraced emperors was condemned posthumously (see damnatio memoriae). Champlin, however, doubts that the practice is necessarily negative and notes that some continued to create images of Nero long after his death. The civil war during the year of the Four Emperors was described by ancient historians as a troubling period. According to Tacitus, this instability was rooted in the fact that emperors could no longer rely on the perceived legitimacy of the imperial bloodline, as Nero and those before him could. Galba began his short reign with the execution of many allies of Nero and possible future enemies. One such notable enemy included Nymphidius Sabinus, who claimed to be the son of Emperor Caligula. Otho was said to be liked by many soldiers because he had been a friend of Nero’s and resembled him somewhat in temperament. It was said that the common Roman hailed Otho as Nero himself. Otho used “Nero” as a surname and reerected many statues to Nero. Vitellius began his reign with a large funeral for Nero complete with songs written by Nero. After Nero’s suicide in 68, there was a widespread belief, especially in the eastern provinces, that he was not dead and somehow would return. This belief came to be known as the Nero Redivivus Legend. The legend of Nero’s return lasted for hundreds of years after Nero’s death. Augustine of Hippo wrote of the legend as a popular belief in 422. At least three Nero imposters emerged leading rebellions. The first, who sang and played the cithara or lyre and whose face was similar to that of the dead emperor, appeared in 69 during the reign of Vitellius. After persuading some to recognize him, he was captured and executed. Sometime during the reign of Titus (79-81), another impostor appeared in Asia and sang to the accompaniment of the lyre and looked like Nero but he, too, was killed. Twenty years after Nero’s death, during the reign of Domitian, there was a third pretender. He was supported by the Parthians, who only reluctantly gave him up, and the matter almost came to war. In his book The Lives of the Twelve Caesars , Suetonius describes Nero as about the average height, his body marked with spots and malodorous, his hair light blond, his features regular rather than attractive, his eyes blue and somewhat weak, his neck over thick, his belly prominent, and his legs very slender. The history of Nero’s reign is problematic in that no historical sources survived that were contemporary with Nero. These first histories at one time did exist and were described as biased and fantastical, either overly critical or praising of Nero. The original sources were also said to contradict on a number of events. Nonetheless, these lost primary sources were the basis of surviving secondary and tertiary histories on Nero written by the next generations of historians. A few of the contemporary historians are known by name. Fabius Rusticus, Cluvius Rufus and Pliny the Elder all wrote condemning histories on Nero that are now lost. There were also pro-Nero histories, but it is unknown who wrote them or for what deeds Nero was praised. The bulk of what is known of Nero comes from Tacitus, Suetonius and Cassius Dio, who were all of the senatorial class. Tacitus and Suetonius wrote their histories on Nero over fifty years after his death, while Cassius Dio wrote his history over 150 years after Nero’s death. These sources contradict on a number of events in Nero’s life including the death of Claudius, the death of Agrippina, and the Roman fire of 64, but they are consistent in their condemnation of Nero. At the end of 66, conflict broke out between Greeks and Jews in Jerusalem and Caesarea. According to the Talmud, Nero went to Jerusalem and shot arrows in all four directions. All the arrows landed in the city. He then asked a passing child to repeat the verse he had learned that day. The child responded, “I will lay my vengeance upon Edom by the hand of my people Israel” Ez. Nero became terrified, believing that God wanted the Temple in Jerusalem to be destroyed, but would punish the one to carry it out. Nero said, “He desires to lay waste His House and to lay the blame on me, ” whereupon he fled and converted to Judaism to avoid such retribution. Vespasian was then dispatched to put down the rebellion. The Talmud adds that the sage Reb Meir Baal HaNess, a prominent supporter of the Bar Kokhba rebellion against Roman rule, was a descendant of Nero. Roman and Greek sources nowhere report Nero’s alleged trip to Jerusalem or his alleged conversion to Judaism. There is also no record of Nero having any offspring who survived infancy: his only recorded child, Claudia Augusta, died aged 4 months. Christian tradition and secular historical sources hold Nero as the first major state sponsor of Christian persecution, and sometimes as the killer of Apostles Peter and Paul. Some 2nd- and 3rd-century theologians, among others, recorded their belief that Nero would return from death or exile, usually as the Anti-Christ. He is also seen as one of the most savage persecutors of Christians. Non-Christian historian Tacitus describes Nero extensively torturing and executing Christians after the fire of 64. Suetonius also mentions Nero punishing Christians, though he does so as a praise and does not connect it with the fire. Christian writer Tertullian c. 155-230 was the first to call Nero the first persecutor of Christians. He wrote, Examine your records. There you will find that Nero was the first that persecuted this doctrine. 240-320 also said that Nero “first persecuted the servants of God”. As does Sulpicius Severus. However, Suetonius writes that, “since the Jews constantly made disturbances at the instigation of Chrestus, he [emperor Claudius] expelled them from Rome” (” Iudaeos impulsore Chresto assidue tumultuantis Roma expulit “). These expelled “Jews” may have been early Christians, although Suetonius is not explicit. Nor is the Bible explicit, calling Aquila of Pontus and his wife, Priscilla, both expelled from Italy at the time, Jews. Killer of Peter and Paul. The first text to suggest that Nero killed an apostle is the apocryphal Ascension of Isaiah , a Christian writing from the 2nd century. It says, the slayer of his mother, who himself this king, will persecute the plant which the Twelve Apostles of the Beloved have planted. Of the Twelve one will be delivered into his hands. Bishop Eusebius of Caesarea c. 275-339 was the first to write that Paul was beheaded in Rome during the reign of Nero. He states that Nero’s persecution led to Peter and Paul’s deaths, but that Nero did not give any specific orders. Several other accounts have Paul surviving his two years in Rome and traveling to Hispania. Peter is first said to have been crucified upside-down in Rome during Nero’s reign (but not by Nero) in the apocryphal Acts of Peter c. The account ends with Paul still alive and Nero abiding by God’s command not to persecute any more Christians. By the 4th century, a number of writers were stating that Nero killed Peter and Paul. The Ascension of Isaiah is the first text to suggest that Nero was the Antichrist. It claims that a lawless king, the slayer of his mother… Will come and there will come with him all the powers of this world, and they will hearken unto him in all that he desires. The Sibylline Oracles, Book 5 and 8, written in the 2nd century, speak of Nero returning and bringing destruction. Within Christian communities, these writings, along with others, fueled the belief that Nero would return as the Antichrist. In 310, Lactantius wrote that Nero suddenly disappeared, and even the burial-place of that noxious wild beast was nowhere to be seen. This has led some persons of extravagant imagination to suppose that, having been conveyed to a distant region, he is still reserved alive; and to him they apply the Sibylline verses. In 422, Augustine of Hippo wrote about 2 Thessalonians 2:1-11, where he believed Paul mentioned the coming of the Antichrist. Though he rejects the theory, Augustine mentions that many Christians believed that Nero was the Antichrist or would return as the Antichrist. He wrote, so that in saying, “For the mystery of iniquity doth already work, ” he alluded to Nero, whose deeds already seemed to be as the deeds of Antichrist. Some modern biblical scholars such as Delbert Hillers (Johns Hopkins University) of the American Schools of Oriental Research and the editors of the Oxford & Harper Collins Study Bibles, contend that the number 666 in the Book of Revelation is a code for Nero, a view that is also supported in Roman Catholic Biblical commentaries. The concept of Nero as the Antichrist is often a central belief of Preterist eschatology. World-renowned expert numismatist, enthusiast, author and dealer in authentic ancient Greek, ancient Roman, ancient Byzantine, world coins & more. Ilya Zlobin is an independent individual who has a passion for coin collecting, research and understanding the importance of the historical context and significance all coins and objects represent. Send me a message about this and I can update your invoice should you want this method. Getting your order to you, quickly and securely is a top priority and is taken seriously here. Great care is taken in packaging and mailing every item securely and quickly. What is a certificate of authenticity and what guarantees do you give that the item is authentic? You will be very 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. Additionally, the coin is inside it’s own protective coin flip (holder), with a 2×2 inch description of the coin matching the individual number on the COA. Whether your goal is to collect or give the item as a gift, coins presented like this could be more prized and valued higher than items that were not given such care and attention to. When should I leave feedback? Please don’t leave any negative feedbacks, as it happens sometimes that people rush to leave feedback before letting sufficient time for their 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. How and where do I learn more about collecting ancient coins? Visit the “Guide on How to Use My Store”. For on an overview about using my store, with additional information and links to all other parts of my store which may include educational information on topics you are looking for. The item “NERO Authentic Ancient 64AD Rome Genuine Original Silver Roman Coin NGC i72340″ is in sale since Tuesday, October 2, 2018. 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.
  • Composition: Silver
  • Ruler: Nero
  • Denomination: Denarius
  • Certification Number: 4681652-002
  • Grade: VF
  • Certification: NGC

Nov 17 2018

COMMODUS 184AD Rome Sestertius VICTORY vs BRITAIN Ancient Roman Coin NGC i68554

COMMODUS 184AD Rome Sestertius VICTORY vs BRITAIN Ancient Roman Coin NGC i68554

COMMODUS 184AD Rome Sestertius VICTORY vs BRITAIN Ancient Roman Coin NGC i68554

COMMODUS 184AD Rome Sestertius VICTORY vs BRITAIN Ancient Roman Coin NGC i68554

COMMODUS 184AD Rome Sestertius VICTORY vs BRITAIN Ancient Roman Coin NGC i68554

COMMODUS 184AD Rome Sestertius VICTORY vs BRITAIN Ancient Roman Coin NGC i68554

Item: i68554 Authentic Ancient Coin of. VICTORY over BRITAIN Bronze Sestertius 30mm (21.71 grams) Rome mint, struck 184/185 A. Reference: RIC 440; Cohen 945 Certification: NGC Ancients. VF 4281763-006 M COMMODVS ANTON AVG PIVS BRIT, Laureate head right. Son of Marcus Aurelius. Commodus (Latin: Marcus Aurelius Commodus Antoninus Augustus ; 31 August, 161 AD – 31 December, 192 AD), was Roman Emperor from 180 to 192. He also ruled as co-emperor with his father Marcus Aurelius from 177 until his father’s death in 180. His accession as emperor was the first time a son had succeeded his father since Titus succeeded Vespasian in 79. He was also the first Emperor to have both a father and grandfather as the two preceding Emperors. Commodus was the first (and until 337 the only) emperor “born in the purple”; i. During his father’s reign. Commodus was assassinated in 192. Early life and rise to power (161-180). Commodus was born on 31 August 161, as Commodus, in Lanuvium, near Rome. He was the son of the reigning emperor, Marcus Aurelius, and Aurelius’s first cousin, Faustina the Younger; the youngest daughter of Roman Emperor Antonius Pius. Commodus had an elder twin brother, Titus Aurelius Fulvus Antoninus, who died in 165. On 12 October 166, Commodus was made Caesar together with his younger brother, Marcus Annius Verus. The latter died in 169 having failed to recover from an operation, which left Commodus as Marcus Aurelius’ sole surviving son. He was looked after by his father’s physician, Galen, in order to keep Commodus healthy and alive. Galen treated many of Commodus’ common illnesses. Commodus received extensive tuition at the hands of what Marcus Aurelius called an abundance of good masters. The focus of Commodus’ education appears to have been intellectual, possibly at the expense of military training. Commodus is known to have been at Carnuntum, the headquarters of Marcus Aurelius during the Marcomannic Wars, in 172. It was presumably there that, on 15 October 172, he was given the victory title Germanicus , in the presence of the army. The title suggests that Commodus was present at his father’s victory over the Marcomanni. On 20 January 175, Commodus entered the College of Pontiffs, the starting point of a career in public life. In April 175, Avidius Cassius, Governor of Syria, declared himself Emperor following rumors that Marcus Aurelius had died. Having been accepted as Emperor by Syria, Palestine and Egypt, Cassius carried on his rebellion even after it had become obvious that Marcus was still alive. During the preparations for the campaign against Cassius, the Prince assumed his toga virilis on the Danubian front on 7 July 175, thus formally entering adulthood. Cassius, however, was killed by one of his centurions before the campaign against him could begin. Commodus subsequently accompanied his father on a lengthy trip to the Eastern provinces, during which he visited Antioch. The Emperor and his son then traveled to Athens, where they were initiated into the Eleusinian mysteries. Joint rule with father (177). Marcus Aurelius was the first emperor since Vespasian to have a biological son of his own and, though he himself was the fifth in the line of the so-called Five Good Emperors, each of whom had adopted his successor, it seems to have been his firm intention that Commodus should be his heir. On 27 November 176, Marcus Aurelius granted Commodus the rank of Imperator and, in the middle of 177, the title Augustus , giving his son the same status as his own and formally sharing power. On 23 December of the same year, the two Augusti celebrated a joint triumph, and Commodus was given tribunician power. On 1 January 177, Commodus became consul for the first time, which made him, aged 15, the youngest consul in Roman history up to that time. He subsequently married Bruttia Crispina before accompanying his father to the Danubian front once more in 178, where Marcus Aurelius died on 17 March 180, leaving the 18-year-old Commodus sole emperor. Upon his accession Commodus devalued the Roman currency. He reduced the weight of the denarius from 96 per Roman pound to 105 (3.85 grams to 3.35 grams). He also reduced the silver purity from 79 percent to 76 percent – the silver weight dropping from 2.57 grams to 2.34 grams. In 186 he further reduced the purity and silver weight to 74 percent and 2.22 grams respectively, being 108 to the Roman pound. His reduction of the denarius during his rule was the largest since the empire’s first devaluation during Nero’s reign. Whereas the reign of Marcus Aurelius had been marked by almost continuous warfare, that of Commodus was comparatively peaceful in the military sense but was marked by political strife and the increasingly arbitrary and capricious behaviour of the emperor himself. In the view of Dio Cassius, a contemporary observer, his accession marked the descent “from a kingdom of gold to one of rust and iron” – a famous comment which has led some historians, notably Edward Gibbon, to take Commodus’s reign as the beginning of the decline of the Roman Empire. Despite his notoriety, and considering the importance of his reign, Commodus’s years in power are not well chronicled. The principal surviving literary sources are Dio Cassius (a contemporary and sometimes first-hand observer, but for this reign, only transmitted in fragments and abbreviations), Herodian and the Historia Augusta (untrustworthy for its character as a work of literature rather than history, with elements of fiction embedded within its biographies; in the case of Commodus, it may well be embroidering upon what the author found in reasonably good contemporary sources). Commodus remained with the Danube armies for only a short time before negotiating a peace treaty with the Danubian tribes. Unlike the preceding Emperors Trajan, Hadrian, Antoninus Pius and Marcus Aurelius, he seems to have had little interest in the business of administration and tended throughout his reign to leave the practical running of the state to a succession of favourites, beginning with Saoterus, a freedman from Nicomedia who had become his chamberlain. Dissatisfaction with this state of affairs would lead to a series of conspiracies and attempted coups, which in turn eventually provoked Commodus to take charge of affairs, which he did in an increasingly dictatorial manner. Nevertheless, though the senatorial order came to hate and fear him, the evidence suggests that he remained popular with the army and the common people for much of his reign, not least because of his lavish shows of largesse (recorded on his coinage) and because he staged and took part in spectacular gladiatorial combats. The conspiracies of 182. A bust of Commodus as a youth (Roman-Germanic Museum, Cologne). At the outset of his reign, Commodus, age 18, inherited many of his father’s senior advisers, notably Tiberius Claudius Pompeianus (the second husband of Commodus’s sister Lucilla), his father-in-law Gaius Bruttius Praesens, Titus Fundanius Vitrasius Pollio, and Aufidius Victorinus, who was Prefect of the City of Rome. He also had five surviving sisters, all of them with husbands who were potential rivals. Four of his sisters were considerably older than he; the eldest, Lucilla, held the rank of Augusta as the widow of her first husband, Lucius Verus. The first crisis of the reign came in 182, when Lucilla engineered a conspiracy against her brother. Her motive is alleged to have been envy of the Empress Crispina. Her husband, Pompeianus, was not involved, but two men alleged to have been her lovers, Marcus Ummidius Quadratus Annianus (the consul of 167, who was also her first cousin) and Appius Claudius Quintianus, attempted to murder Commodus as he entered the theatre. They bungled the job and were seized by the emperor’s bodyguard. Quadratus and Quintianus were executed. Lucilla was exiled to Capri and later killed. Pompeianus retired from public life. One of the two praetorian prefects, Tarrutenius Paternus, had actually been involved in the conspiracy but was not detected at this time, and in the aftermath, he and his colleague Sextus Tigidius Perennis were able to arrange for the murder of Saoterus, the hated chamberlain. Commodus took the loss of Saoterus badly, and Perennis now seized the chance to advance himself by implicating Paternus in a second conspiracy, one apparently led by Publius Salvius Julianus, who was the son of the jurist Salvius Julianus and was betrothed to Paternus’s daughter. Salvius and Paternus were executed along with a number of other prominent consulars and senators. Didius Julianus, the future emperor, a relative of Salvius Julianus, was dismissed from the governorship of Germania Inferior. Perennis took over the reins of government and Commodus found a new chamberlain and favourite in Cleander, a Phrygian freedman who had married one of the emperor’s mistresses, Demostratia. Cleander was in fact the person who had murdered Saoterus. After those attempts on his life, Commodus spent much of his time outside Rome, mostly on the family estates at Lanuvium. Being physically strong, his chief interest was in sport: taking part in horse racing, chariot racing, and combats with beasts and men, mostly in private but also on occasion in public. A bust of Commodus (Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna). According to Herodian he was well proportioned and attractive, with naturally blonde and curly hair. Commodus was inaugurated in 183 as consul with Aufidius Victorinus for a colleague and assumed the title Pius. War broke out in Dacia: few details are available, but it appears two future contenders for the throne, Clodius Albinus and Pescennius Niger, both distinguished themselves in the campaign. Also, in Britain in 184, the governor Ulpius Marcellus re-advanced the Roman frontier northward to the Antonine Wall, but the legionaries revolted against his harsh discipline and acclaimed another legate, Priscus, as emperor. Priscus refused to accept their acclamations, but Perennis had all the legionary legates in Britain cashiered. On 15 October 184 at the Capitoline Games, a Cynic philosopher publicly denounced Perennis before Commodus, who was watching, but was immediately put to death. According to Dio Cassius, Perennis, though ruthless and ambitious, was not personally corrupt and generally administered the state well. However, the following year, a detachment of soldiers from Britain (they had been drafted to Italy to suppress brigands) also denounced Perennis to the emperor as plotting to make his own son emperor (they had been enabled to do so by Cleander, who was seeking to dispose of his rival), and Commodus gave them permission to execute him as well as his wife and sons. The fall of Perennis brought a new spate of executions: Aufidius Victorinus committed suicide. Ulpius Marcellus was replaced as governor of Britain by Pertinax; brought to Rome and tried for treason, Marcellus narrowly escaped death. Cleander’s zenith and fall (185-190). Unrest around the empire increased, with large numbers of army deserters causing trouble in Gaul and Germany. Pescennius Niger mopped up the deserters in Gaul in a military campaign, and a revolt in Brittany was put down by two legions brought over from Britain. In 187, one of the leaders of the deserters, Maternus, came from Gaul intending to assassinate Commodus at the Festival of the Great Goddess in March, but he was betrayed and executed. In the same year, Pertinax unmasked a conspiracy by two enemies of Cleander – Antistius Burrus (one of Commodus’s brothers-in-law) and Arrius Antoninus. As a result, Commodus appeared even more rarely in public, preferring to live on his estates. Early in 188, Cleander disposed of the current praetorian prefect, Atilius Aebutianus, and himself took over supreme command of the Praetorians at the new rank of a pugione (“dagger-bearer”) with two praetorian prefects subordinate to him. Now at the zenith of his power, Cleander continued to sell public offices as his private business. The climax came in the year 190, which had 25 suffect consuls – a record in the 1000-year history of the Roman consulship-all appointed by Cleander (they included the future Emperor Septimius Severus). In the spring of 190, Rome was afflicted by a food shortage, for which the praefectus annonae Papirius Dionysius, the official actually in charge of the grain supply, contrived to lay the blame on Cleander. At the end of June, a mob demonstrated against Cleander during a horse race in the Circus Maximus: he sent the praetorian guard to put down the disturbances, but Pertinax, who was now City Prefect of Rome, dispatched the Vigiles Urbani to oppose them. Cleander fled to Commodus, who was at Laurentum in the house of the Quinctilii, for protection, but the mob followed him calling for his head. At the urging of his mistress Marcia, Commodus had Cleander beheaded and his son killed. Other victims at this time were the praetorian prefect Julius Julianus, Commodus’s cousin Annia Fundania Faustina, and his brother-in-law Mamertinus. Papirius Dionysius was executed too. The emperor now changed his name to Lucius Aelius Aurelius Commodus. At 29, he took over more of the reins of power, though he continued to rule through a cabal consisting of Marcia, his new chamberlain Eclectus, and the new praetorian prefect Quintus Aemilius Laetus, who about this time also had many Christians freed from working in the mines in Sardinia. Marcia, the widow of Quadratus, who had been executed in 182, is alleged to have been a Christian. In opposition to the Senate, in his pronouncements and iconography, Commodus had always laid stress on his unique status as a source of god-like power, liberality and physical prowess. Innumerable statues around the empire were set up portraying him in the guise of Hercules, reinforcing the image of him as a demigod, a physical giant, a protector and a battler against beasts and men (see “Commodus and Hercules” and “Commodus the Gladiator” below). Moreover, as Hercules, he could claim to be the son of Jupiter, the representative of the supreme god of the Roman pantheon. These tendencies now increased to megalomaniac proportions. Far from celebrating his descent from Marcus Aurelius, the actual source of his power, he stressed his own personal uniqueness as the bringer of a new order, seeking to re-cast the empire in his own image. During 191, the city of Rome was extensively damaged by a fire that raged for several days, during which many public buildings including the Temple of Pax, the Temple of Vesta and parts of the imperial palace were destroyed. Perhaps seeing this as an opportunity, early in 192 Commodus, declaring himself the new Romulus, ritually re-founded Rome, renaming the city Colonia Lucia Annia Commodiana. All the months of the year were renamed to correspond exactly with his (now twelve) names: Lucius , Aelius , Aurelius , Commodus , Augustus , Herculeus , Romanus , Exsuperatorius , Amazonius , Invictus , Felix , Pius. The legions were renamed Commodianae , the fleet which imported grain from Africa was termed Alexandria Commodiana Togata , the Senate was entitled the Commodian Fortunate Senate, his palace and the Roman people themselves were all given the name Commodianus , and the day on which these reforms were decreed was to be called Dies Commodianus. Thus he presented himself as the fountainhead of the Empire and Roman life and religion. He also had the head of the Colossus of Nero adjacent to the Colosseum replaced with his own portrait, gave it a club and placed a bronze lion at its feet to make it look like Hercules, and added an inscription boasting of being “the only left-handed fighter to conquer twelve times one thousand men”. Character and physical prowess. Dio Cassius, a first-hand witness, describes him as not naturally wicked but, on the contrary, as guileless as any man that ever lived. His great simplicity, however, together with his cowardice, made him the slave of his companions, and it was through them that he at first, out of ignorance, missed the better life and then was led on into lustful and cruel habits, which soon became second nature. His recorded actions do tend to show a rejection of his father’s policies, his father’s advisers, and especially his father’s austere lifestyle, and an alienation from the surviving members of his family. It seems likely that he was brought up in an atmosphere of Stoic asceticism, which he rejected entirely upon his accession to sole rule. After repeated attempts on Commodus’ life, Roman citizens were often killed for raising his ire. One such notable event was the attempted extermination of the house of the Quinctilii. Condianus and Maximus were executed on the pretext that, while they were not implicated in any plots, their wealth and talent would make them unhappy with the current state of affairs. On his accession as sole ruler, Commodus added the name Antoninus to his official nomenclature. In October 180 he changed his praenomen from Lucius to Marcus, presumably in honour of his father. He later took the title of Felix in 185. In 191 he restored his praenomen to Lucius and added the family name Aelius, apparently linking himself to Hadrian and Hadrian’s adopted son Lucius Aelius Caesar, whose original name was also Commodus. Later that year he dropped Antoninus and adopted as his full style Lucius Aelius Aurelius Commodus Augustus Herculeus Romanus Exsuperatorius Amazonius Invictus Felix Pius (the order of some of these titles varies in the sources). “Exsuperatorius” (the supreme) was a title given to Jupiter, and “Amazonius” identified him again with Hercules. An inscribed altar from Dura-Europos on the Euphrates shows that Commodus’s titles and the renaming of the months were disseminated to the furthest reaches of the Empire; moreover, that even auxiliary military units received the title Commodiana, and that Commodus claimed two additional titles: Pacator Orbis (pacifier of the world) and Dominus Noster (Our Lord). The latter eventually would be used as a conventional title by Roman emperors, starting about a century later, but Commodus seems to have been the first to assume it. Disdaining the more philosophic inclinations of his father, Commodus was extremely proud of his physical prowess. He was generally acknowledged to be extremely handsome. As mentioned above, he ordered many statues to be made showing him dressed as Hercules with a lion’s hide and a club. He thought of himself as the reincarnation of Hercules, frequently emulating the legendary hero’s feats by appearing in the arena to fight a variety of wild animals. He was left-handed, and very proud of the fact. Cassius Dio and the writers of the Augustan History say that Commodus was a skilled archer, who could shoot the heads off ostriches in full gallop, and kill a panther as it attacked a victim in the arena. Commodus also had a passion for gladiatorial combat, which he took so far as to take to the arena himself, dressed as a gladiator. The Romans found Commodus’s naked gladiatorial combats to be scandalous and disgraceful. It was rumoured that he was actually the son, not of Marcus Aurelius, but of a gladiator whom his mother Faustina had taken as a lover at the coastal resort of Caieta. In the arena, Commodus always won since his opponents always submitted to the emperor. Thus, these public fights would not end in death. Privately, it was his custom to slay his practice opponents. For each appearance in the arena, he charged the city of Rome a million sesterces, straining the Roman economy. Commodus raised the ire of many military officials in Rome for his Hercules persona in the arena. Often, wounded soldiers and amputees would be placed in the arena for Commodus to slay with a sword. Commodus’s eccentric behaviour would not stop there. Citizens of Rome missing their feet through accident or illness were taken to the arena, where they were tethered together for Commodus to club to death while pretending they were giants. These acts may have contributed to his assassination. Commodus was also known for fighting exotic animals in the arena, often to the horror of the Roman people. According to Gibbon, Commodus once killed 100 lions in a single day. Later, he decapitated a running ostrich with a specially designed dart and afterwards carried the bleeding head of the dead bird and his sword over to the section where the Senators sat and gesticulated as though they were next. On another occasion, Commodus killed three elephants on the floor of the arena by himself. Finally, Commodus killed a giraffe, which was considered to be a strange and helpless beast. In November 192 Commodus held Plebian Games, in which he shot hundreds of animals with arrows and javelins every morning, and fought as a gladiator every afternoon, winning all the bouts. In December he announced his intention to inaugurate the year 193 as both consul and gladiator on 1 January. At this point, the prefect Laetus formed a conspiracy with Eclectus to supplant Commodus with Pertinax, taking Marcia into their confidence. On 31 December Marcia poisoned his food but he vomited up the poison; so the conspirators sent his wrestling partner Narcissus to strangle him in his bath. Upon his death, the Senate declared him a public enemy (a de facto damnatio memoriae) and restored the original name to the city of Rome and its institutions. Commodus’s statues were thrown down. His body was buried in the Mausoleum of Hadrian. In 195 the emperor Septimius Severus, trying to gain favour with the family of Marcus Aurelius, rehabilitated Commodus’s memory and had the Senate deify him. Commodus was succeeded by Pertinax, whose reign was short lived, being the first to fall victim to the Year of the Five Emperors. Commodus’s death marked the end of the Nervan-Antonian dynasty. World-renowned expert numismatist, enthusiast, author and dealer in authentic ancient Greek, ancient Roman, ancient Byzantine, world coins & more. Ilya Zlobin is an independent individual who has a passion for coin collecting, research and understanding the importance of the historical context and significance all coins and objects represent. Send me a message about this and I can update your invoice should you want this method. Getting your order to you, quickly and securely is a top priority and is taken seriously here. Great care is taken in packaging and mailing every item securely and quickly. What is a certificate of authenticity and what guarantees do you give that the item is authentic? You will be very 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. Additionally, the coin is inside it’s own protective coin flip (holder), with a 2×2 inch description of the coin matching the individual number on the COA. Whether your goal is to collect or give the item as a gift, coins presented like this could be more prized and valued higher than items that were not given such care and attention to. When should I leave feedback? Please don’t leave any negative feedbacks, as it happens sometimes that people rush to leave feedback before letting sufficient time for their 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. How and where do I learn more about collecting ancient coins? Visit the “Guide on How to Use My Store”. For on an overview about using my store, with additional information and links to all other parts of my store which may include educational information on topics you are looking for. The item “COMMODUS 184AD Rome Sestertius VICTORY vs BRITAIN Ancient Roman Coin NGC i68554″ is in sale since Monday, April 9, 2018. 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.
  • Denomination: Sestertius
  • Ruler: Commodus
  • Ancient Coins: Roman Coins
  • Coin Type: Ancient Roman
  • Certification: NGC
  • Grade: VF
  • Certification Number: 4281763-006

Nov 8 2018

TITUS 77AD Rome Authentic Ancient Silver Roman Coin MOM Pig Sow & Piglets i63378

TITUS 77AD Rome Authentic Ancient Silver Roman Coin MOM Pig Sow & Piglets i63378

TITUS 77AD Rome Authentic Ancient Silver Roman Coin MOM Pig Sow & Piglets i63378

TITUS 77AD Rome Authentic Ancient Silver Roman Coin MOM Pig Sow & Piglets i63378

Item: i63378 Authentic Ancient Coin of. Silver Denarius 16mm (3.13 grams) Titus as Caesar, Rome mint: 77-78 A. Reference: RIC 986; BM 227; Paris 203, pl. XXXIII; Cohen 104 T CAESAR VESPASIANVS, Laureate head right. IMP XIII in exergue, Sow standing, three piglets standing below her. Lares Grundules: the thirty “grunting Lares”, supposedly given an altar and cult by Romulus or Aeneas when a sow produced a prodigous farrow of thirty piglets. According to Dionysius of Halicarnassus the place where the sow bore the piglets and Aeneas made the sacrifice was sacred, and forbidden to foreigners. The sow’s body was said to be kept at Lavinium, preserved in salt brine as a sacred object. The thirty piglets would provide the theological justification for the thirty populi Albenses of the feriae Latinae (the thirty fortified boroughs supposedly founded by Aeneas at Lavinium), and the thirty curiae of Rome. Caesar Under Vespasian. Imperator Under Vespasian. As Caesar 79-81 A. Sole Reign with Domitian. Titus Flavius Vespasianus , commonly known as Titus (December 30, 39 – September 13, 81), was a Roman Emperor who briefly reigned from 79 until his death in 81. Titus was the second emperor of the Flavian dynasty, which ruled the Roman Empire between 69 and 96, encompassing the reigns of Titus’s father Vespasian (69-79), Titus himself (79-81) and his younger brother Domitian (81-96). Prior to becoming emperor, Titus gained renown as a military commander, serving under his father in Judaea during the First Jewish-Roman War, which was fought between 67 and 70. When Vespasian was declared emperor on July 1, 69, Titus was left in charge of ending the Jewish rebellion, which he did in 70, successfully besieging and destroying the city and the Temple of Jerusalem. For this achievement Titus was awarded a triumph; the Arch of Titus commemorates his victory to this day. Under the rule of his father, Titus gained infamy in Rome serving as prefect of the Roman imperial bodyguard, known as the Praetorian Guard, and for carrying on a controversial relationship with the Jewish queen Berenice. Despite concerns over his character, however, Titus ruled to great acclaim following the death of Vespasian on June 23, 79, and was considered a good emperor by Suetonius and other contemporary historians. In this role he is best known for his public building program in Rome-completing the Flavian Amphitheatre, otherwise known as the Colosseum- and for his generosity in relieving the suffering caused by two disasters, the Mount Vesuvius eruption of 79 and the fire of Rome of 80. After barely two years in office, Titus died of a fever on September 13, 81. He was deified by the Roman Senate and succeeded by his younger brother Domitian. Titus was born in Rome, probably on 30 December 39, as the eldest son of Titus Flavius Vespasianus-commonly known as Vespasian-and Domitilla the Elder. He had one younger sister, Domitilla the Younger b. 45, and one younger brother, also named Titus Flavius Domitianus b. 51, but commonly referred to as Domitian. Decades of civil war during the 1st century BC had contributed greatly to the demise of the old aristocracy of Rome, which was gradually replaced in prominence by a new provincial nobility during the early part of the 1st century. One such family was the gens Flavia , which rose from relative obscurity to prominence in just four generations, acquiring wealth and status under the emperors of the Julio-Claudian dynasty. Titus’s great-grandfather, Titus Flavius Petro, had served as a centurion under Pompey during Caesar’s civil war. His military career ended in disgrace when he fled the battlefield at the Battle of Pharsalus in 48 BC. Nevertheless, Petro managed to improve his status by marrying the extremely wealthy Tertulla, whose fortune guaranteed the upwards mobility of Petro’s son Titus Flavius Sabinus I, Titus’s grandfather. By marrying Vespasia Polla he allied himself to the more prestigious patrician gens Vespasia , ensuring the elevation of his sons Titus Flavius Sabinus II and Vespasian to the senatorial rank. The political career of Vespasian included the offices of quaestor, aedile and praetor, and culminated with a consulship in 51, the year Domitian was born. As a military commander, he gained early renown by participating in the Roman invasion of Britain in 43. What little is known of Titus’s early life has been handed down to us by Suetonius, who records that he was brought up at the imperial court in the company of Britannicus, the son of emperor Claudius, who would be murdered by Nero in 55. The story was even told that Titus was reclining next to Britannicus, the night he was murdered, and sipped of the poison that was handed to him. Further details on his education are scarce, but it seems he showed early promise in the military arts and was a skilled poet and orator both in Greek and Latin. 57 to 59 he was a military tribune in Germania. He also served in Britannia, perhaps arriving c. 60 with reinforcements needed after the revolt of Boudica. Titus then took a new wife of a much more distinguished family, Marcia Furnilla. However, Marcia’s family was closely linked to the opposition to Nero. Her uncle Barea Soranus and his daughter Servilia were among those who perished after the failed Pisonian conspiracy of 65. Some modern historians theorize that Titus divorced his wife because of her family’s connection to the conspiracy. Titus appears to have had multiple daughters, at least one of them by Marcia Furnilla. The only one known to have survived to adulthood was Julia Flavia, perhaps Titus’s child by Arrecina, whose mother was also named Julia. During this period Titus also practiced law and attained the rank of quaestor. In 66 the Jews of the Judaea Province revolted against the Roman Empire. Cestius Gallus, the legate of Syria, was defeated at the battle of Beth-Horon and forced to retreat from Jerusalem. The pro-Roman king Agrippa II and his sister Berenice fled the city to Galilee where they later gave themselves up to the Romans. Nero appointed Vespasian to put down the rebellion, who was dispatched to the region at once with the fifth and tenth legions. He was later joined by Titus at Ptolemais, bringing with him the fifteenth legion. With a strength of 60,000 professional soldiers, the Romans prepared to sweep across Galilee and march on Jerusalem. The history of the war was covered in dramatic detail by the Roman-Jewish historian Josephus in his work The Wars of the Jews. Josephus served as a commander in the city of Jotapata when the Roman army invaded Galilee in 67. After an exhausting siege which lasted 47 days, the city fell, with an estimated 40,000 killed and the remaining Jewish resistance committing suicide. Josephus himself surrendered to Vespasian, became a prisoner and provided the Romans with intelligence on the ongoing revolt. By 68, the entire coast and the north of Judaea were subjugated by the Roman army, with decisive victories won at Taricheae and Gamala, where Titus distinguished himself as a skilled general. Year of the Four Emperors. Map of the Roman Empire during the Year of the Four Emperors (69 AD). Blue areas indicate provinces loyal to Vespasian and Gaius Licinius Mucianus. The last and most significant fortress of Jewish resistance was Jerusalem. However the campaign came to a sudden halt when news arrived of Nero’s death. Almost simultaneously, the Roman Senate had declared Galba, then governor of Hispania, as Emperor of Rome. Vespasian decided to await further orders, and sent Titus to greet the new princeps. Before reaching Italy, Titus learnt that Galba had been murdered and replaced by Otho, governor of Lusitania, and that Vitellius and his armies in Germania were preparing to march on the capital, intent on overthrowing Otho. Not wanting to risk being taken hostage by one side or the other, he abandoned the journey to Rome and rejoined his father in Judaea. Meanwhile, Otho was defeated in the First Battle of Bedriacum and committed suicide. When the news spread across the armies in Judaea and Ægyptus, they took matters into their own hands and declared Vespasian emperor on July 1, 69. Vespasian accepted, and through negotiations by Titus joined forces with Gaius Licinius Mucianus, governor of Syria. A strong force drawn from the Judaean and Syrian legions marched on Rome under the command of Mucianus, while Vespasian himself travelled to Alexandria, leaving Titus in charge to end the Jewish rebellion. By the end of 69 the forces of Vitellius had been beaten, and Vespasian was officially declared emperor by the Senate on December 21, thus ending the Year of the Four Emperors. Destruction of the Temple of Jerusalem , Francesco Hayez, oil on canvas, 1867. Depicting the destruction and looting of the Second Temple by the Roman army. Meanwhile the Jews had become embroiled in a civil conflict of their own, splitting the resistance in the city among two factions; the Sicarii led by Simon Bar Giora, and the Zealots led by John of Gischala. Titus seized the opportunity to begin the assault on Jerusalem. The Roman army was joined by the twelfth legion, which was previously defeated under Cestius Gallus, and from Alexandria Vespasian sent Tiberius Julius Alexander, governor of Ægyptus, to act as Titus’s second in command. Titus surrounded the city, with three legions (Vth, XIIth and XVth) on the western side and one (Xth) on the Mount of Olives to the east. He put pressure on the food and water supplies of the inhabitants by allowing pilgrims to enter the city to celebrate Passover, and then refusing them egress. Jewish raids continuously harassed the Roman army, one of which nearly resulted in Titus being captured. After attempts by Josephus to negotiate a surrender had failed, the Romans resumed hostilities and quickly breached the first and second walls of the city. To intimidate the resistance, Titus ordered deserters from the Jewish side to be crucified around the city wall. By this time the Jews had been thoroughly exhausted by famine, and when the weak third wall was breached bitter street fighting ensued. The Romans finally captured the Antonia Fortress and began a frontal assault on the gates of the Temple. According to Josephus, Titus had ordered that the Temple itself should not be destroyed, but while the fighting around the gates continued a soldier hurled a torch inside one of the windows, which quickly set the entire building ablaze. The later Christian chronicler Sulpicius Severus, possibly drawing on a lost portion of Tacitus’ Histories , claims that Titus favoured destruction of the Temple. Whatever the case, the Temple was completely demolished, after which Titus’s soldiers proclaimed him imperator in honor of the victory. Jerusalem was sacked and much of the population killed or dispersed. Josephus claims that 1,100,000 people were killed during the siege, of which a majority were Jewish. 97,000 were captured and enslaved, including Simon Bar Giora and John of Gischala. Many fled to areas around the Mediterranean. Titus reportedly refused to accept a wreath of victory, as he claimed there is “no merit in vanquishing people forsaken by their own God”. Titus’ triumph after the First Jewish-Roman War was celebrated with the Arch of Titus in Rome, which shows the treasures taken from the Temple in Jerusalem, including the Menorah and the Trumpets of jericho. Unable to sail to Italy during the winter, Titus celebrated elaborate games at Caesarea Maritima and Berytus, then travelled to Zeugma on the Euphrates, where he was presented with a crown by Vologases I of Parthia. While visiting Antioch he confirmed the traditional rights of the Jews in that city. On his way to Alexandria, he stopped in Memphis to consecrate the sacred bull Apis. According to Suetonius, this caused consternation; the ceremony required Titus to wear a diadem, which the Romans associated with kingship, and the partisanship of Titus’s legions had already led to fears that he might rebel against his father. Upon his arrival in the city in 71, Titus was awarded a triumph. Accompanied by Vespasian and Domitian he rode into the city, enthusiastically saluted by the Roman populace and preceded by a lavish parade containing treasures and captives from the war. Josephus describes a procession with large amounts of gold and silver carried along the route, followed by elaborate re-enactments of the war, Jewish prisoners, and finally the treasures taken from the Temple of Jerusalem, including the Menorah and the Pentateuch. Simon Bar Giora was executed in the Forum, after which the procession closed with religious sacrifices at the Temple of Jupiter. The triumphal Arch of Titus, which stands at one entrance to the Forum, memorializes the victory of Titus. The Arch of Titus, located on the Via Sacra, just to the south-east of the Forum Romanum in Rome. With Vespasian declared emperor, Titus and his brother Domitian likewise received the title of Caesar from the Senate. In addition to sharing tribunician power with his father, Titus held seven consulships during Vespasian’s reign and acted as his secretary, appearing in the Senate on his behalf. More crucially, he was appointed commander of the Praetorian Guard, ensuring their loyalty to the emperor and further solidifying Vespasian’s position as a legitimate ruler. In this capacity he achieved considerable notoriety in Rome for his violent actions, frequently ordering the execution of suspected traitors on the spot. When in 79, a plot by Aulus Caecina Alienus and Eprius Marcellus to overthrow Vespasian was uncovered, Titus invited Alienus to dinner and ordered him to be stabbed before he had even left the room. During the Jewish wars, Titus had begun a love affair with Berenice, sister of Agrippa II. The Herodians had collaborated with the Romans during the rebellion, and Berenice herself had supported Vespasian upon his campaign to become emperor. The Romans were wary of the Eastern Queen and disapproved of their relationship. When the pair was publicly denounced by Cynics in the theatre, Titus caved in to the pressure and sent her away, but his reputation further suffered. Vespasian died of an infection on June 23 79 AD, and was immediately succeeded by his son Titus. Because of his many alleged vices, many Romans feared at this point that he would be another Nero. Against these expectations, however, Titus proved to be an effective emperor and was well-loved by the population, who praised him highly when they found that he possessed the greatest virtues instead of vices. One of his first acts as an emperor was to publicly order a halt to trials based on treason charges, which had long plagued the principate. The law of treason, or maiestas law, was originally intended to prosecute those who had corruptly’impaired the people and majesty of Rome’ by any revolutionary action. Under Augustus, however, this custom had been revived and applied to cover slander or libellous writings as well, eventually leading to a long cycle of trials and executions under such emperors as Tiberius, Caligula and Nero, spawning entire networks of informers that terrorized Rome’s political system for decades. Titus put an end to this practice, against himself or anyone else, declaring. It is impossible for me to be insulted or abused in any way. For I do naught that deserves censure, and I care not for what is reported falsely. As for the emperors who are dead and gone, they will avenge themselves in case anyone does them a wrong, if in very truth they are demigods and possess any power. Consequently, no senators were put to death during his reign; he thus kept to his promise that he would assume the office of Pontifex Maximus “for the purpose of keeping his hands unstained”. The informants were publicly punished and banished from the city, and Titus further prevented abuses by introducing legislation that made it unlawful for persons to be tried under different laws for the same offense. As emperor he became known for his generosity, and Suetonius states that upon realising he had brought no benefit to anyone during a whole day he remarked, Friends, I have lost a day. The 79 eruption of Mount Vesuvius completely destroyed Pompeii and Herculaneum. Today plaster casts of actual victims found during excavations are on display in some of the ruins. Although his administration was marked by a relative absence of major military or political conflicts, Titus faced a number of major disasters during his brief reign. On August 24, 79, barely two months after his accession, Mount Vesuvius erupted, resulting in the almost complete destruction of life and property in the cities and resort communities around the Bay of Naples. The cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum were buried under metres of stone and lava, killing thousands of citizens. Additionally, he visited Pompeii once after the eruption and again the following year. During the second visit, in spring of AD 80, a fire broke out in Rome, burning large parts of the city for three days and three nights. Although the extent of the damage was not as disastrous as during the Great Fire of 64-crucially sparing the many districts of insulae-Cassius Dio records a long list of important public buildings that were destroyed, including Agrippa’s Pantheon, the Temple of Jupiter, the Diribitorium, parts of Pompey’s Theatre and the Saepta Julia among others. Once again, Titus personally compensated for the damaged regions. According to Suetonius, a plague similarly struck during the fire. The nature of the disease, however, or the death toll are unknown. Meanwhile war had resumed in Britannia, where Gnaeus Julius Agricola pushed further into Caledonia and managed to establish several forts there. As a result of his actions, Titus received the title of Imperator for the fifteenth time. His reign also saw the rebellion led by Terentius Maximus, one of several false Neros who continued to appear throughout the 70s. Although Nero was primarily known as a universally hated tyrant-there is evidence that for much of his reign, he remained highly popular in the eastern provinces. Reports that Nero had in fact survived the assassination attempts were fueled by the vague circumstances surrounding his death and several prophecies foretelling his return. According to Cassius Dio, Terentius Maximus resembled Nero in voice and appearance and, like him, sang to the lyre. Terentius established a following in Asia minor but was soon forced to flee beyond the Euphrates, taking refuge with the Parthians. In addition, sources state that Titus discovered that his brother Domitian was plotting against him but refused to have him killed or banished. The Flavian Amphitheatre, better known as the Colosseum, was completed during the reign of Titus and inaugurated with spectacular games that lasted for 100 days. See Inaugural games of the Flavian Amphitheatre. Construction of the Flavian Amphitheatre, presently better known as the Colosseum, was begun in 70 under Vespasian and finally completed in 80 under Titus. In addition to providing spectacular entertainments to the Roman populace, the building was also conceived as a gigantic triumphal monument to commemorate the military achievements of the Flavians during the Jewish wars. The inaugural games lasted for a hundred days and were said to be extremely elaborate, including gladiatorial combat, fights between wild animals (elephants and cranes), mock naval battles for which the theatre was flooded, horse races and chariot races. During the games, wooden balls were dropped into the audience, inscribed with various prizes (clothing, gold, or even slaves), which could then be traded for the designated item. Adjacent to the amphitheatre, within the precinct of Nero’s Golden House, Titus had also ordered the construction of a new public bath-house, which was to bear his name. Construction of this building was hastily finished to coincide with the completion of the Flavian Amphitheatre. Practice of the imperial cult was revived by Titus, though apparently it met with some difficulty as Vespasian was not deified until six months after his death. To further honor and glorify the Flavian dynasty, foundations were laid for what would later become the Temple of Vespasian and Titus, which was finished by Domitian. At the closing of the games, Titus officially dedicated the amphitheatre and the baths, which was to be his final recorded act as an emperor. He set out for the Sabine territories but fell ill at the first posting station where he died of a fever, reportedly in the same farm-house as his father. Allegedly, the last words he uttered before passing away were: “I have made but one mistake”. Titus had ruled the Roman Empire for just over two years, from the death of his father in 79 to his own on September 13 81. He was succeeded by Domitian, whose first act as emperor was to deify his brother. Historians have speculated on the exact nature of his death, and to which mistake Titus alluded in his final words. Philostratus writes that he was poisoned by Domitian with a sea hare, and that his death had been foretold to him by Apollonius of Tyana. Suetonius and Cassius Dio maintain he died of natural causes, but both accuse Domitian of having left the ailing Titus for dead. Consequently, Dio believes Titus’s mistake refers to his failure to have his brother executed when he was found to be openly plotting against him. According to the Babylonian Talmud (Gittin 56b), an insect flew into Titus’s nose and picked at his brain for seven years. He noticed that the sound of a blacksmith hammering caused the ensuing pain to abate, so he paid for blacksmiths to hammer nearby him; however, the effect wore off and the insect resumed its gnawing. When he died, they opened his skull and found the insect had grown to the size of a bird. The Talmud gives this as the cause of his death and interprets it as divine retribution for his wicked actions. Titus’s record among ancient historians stands as one of the most exemplary of any emperor. All the surviving accounts from this period, many of them written by his own contemporaries, present a highly favourable view towards Titus. His character has especially prospered in comparison with that of his brother Domitian. The Wars of the Jews offers a first-hand, eye-witness account on the Jewish rebellion and the character of Titus. The neutrality of Josephus’ writings has come into question however as he was heavily indebted to the Flavians. In 71, he arrived in Rome in the entourage of Titus, became a Roman citizen and took on the Roman nomen Flavius and praenomen Titus from his patrons. He received an annual pension and lived in the palace. It was while in Rome, and under Flavian patronage, that Josephus wrote all of his known works. The War of the Jews is heavily slanted against the leaders of the revolt, portraying the rebellion as weak and unorganized, and even blaming the Jews for causing the war. The credibility of Josephus as a historian has subsequently come under fire. Another contemporary of Titus was Publius Cornelius Tacitus, who started his public career in 80 or 81 and credits the Flavian dynasty with his elevation. The Histories -his account of this period-was published during the reign of Trajan. Unfortunately only the first five books from this work have survived until the present day, with the text on Titus’s and Domitian’s reign entirely lost. Suetonius Tranquilius gives a short but highly favourable account on Titus’s reign in The Lives of Twelve Caesars , emphasizing his military achievements and his generosity as Emperor, in short describing him as follows. Titus, of the same surname as his father, was the delight and darling of the human race; such surpassing ability had he, by nature, art, or good fortune, to win the affections of all men, and that, too, which is no easy task, while he was emperor. Finally, Cassius Dio wrote his Roman History over a hundred years after the death of Titus. He shares a similar outlook as Suetonius, possibly even using the latter as a source, but is more reserved, noting. His satisfactory record may also have been due to the fact that he survived his accession but a very short time, for he was thus given no opportunity for wrongdoing. For he lived after this only two years, two months and twenty days – in addition to the thirty-nine years, five months and twenty-five days he had already lived at that time. In this respect, indeed, he is regarded as having equalled the long reign of Augustus, since it is maintained that Augustus would never have been loved had he lived a shorter time, nor Titus had he lived longer. For Augustus, though at the outset he showed himself rather harsh because of the wars and the factional strife, was later able, in the course of time, to achieve a brilliant reputation for his kindly deeds; Titus, on the other hand, ruled with mildness and died at the height of his glory, whereas, if he had lived a long time, it might have been shown that he owes his present fame more to good fortune than to merit. Pliny the Elder, who later died during the eruption of Mount Vesuvius, dedicated his Naturalis Historia to Titus. In contrast to the ideal portrayal of Titus in Roman histories, in Jewish memory “Titus the Wicked” is remembered as an evil oppressor and destroyer of the Temple. For example, one legend in the Babylonian Talmud describes Titus as having had sex with a whore on a Torah scroll inside the Temple during its destruction. Titus in later arts. The Triumph of Titus , by Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema (1885). The composition suggests a love affair between Titus and Domitian’s wife Domitia Longina (see below). The war in Judaea and the life of Titus, particularly his relationship with Berenice, have inspired writers and artists through the centuries. The bas-relief in the Arch of Titus has been influential in the depiction of the destruction of Jerusalem, with the Menorah frequently being used to symbolise the looting of the Second Temple. Bérénice , a play by Jean Racine (1670) which focuses on the love affair between Titus and Berenice. Tite et Bérénice , a play by Pierre Corneille which was in competition with Racine the same year, and concerns the same subject matter. La clemenza di Tito , an opera by Mozart, about a fictional romance between Emperor Titus and Vitellia, daughter of Vitellius. The Josephus Trilogy , novels by Lion Feuchtwanger, about the life of Flavius Josephus and his relation with the Flavian dynasty. Der jüdische Krieg (Josephus), 1932. Die Söhne (The Jews of Rome), 1935. Der Tag wird kommen (The day will come , Josephus and the Emperor), 1942. The Marcus Didius Falco novels, which take place during the reign of Vespasian. The Roman Mysteries , a series of children’s books which take place during the reign of Titus. The High School Latin textbook series Ecce Romani takes place during the reign of Titus. The Destruction of Jerusalem by Titus by Wilhelm von Kaulbach (1846). Oil on canvas, 585 x 705 cm. An allegorical depiction of the destruction of Jerusalem, dramatically centered around the figure of Titus. The Destruction of the Temple at Jerusalem Nicolas Poussin (1637). Oil on canvas, 147 x 198,5 cm. Depicts the destruction and looting of the Second Temple by the Roman army led by Titus. The Destruction of the Temple of Jerusalem by Francesco Hayez (1867). Oil on canvas, 183 x 252 cm. Galleria d’Arte Moderna, Venice. Depicts the destruction and looting of the Second Temple by the Roman army. The Siege and Destruction of Jerusalem by the Romans Under the Command of Titus, A. 70 by David Roberts (1850). Oil on canvas, 136 x 197 cm. Depicts the burning and looting of Jerusalem by the Roman army under Titus. The Triumph of Titus and Vespasian by Giulio Romano (1540). Oil on wood, 170 x 120 cm. Depicts Titus and Vespasian as they ride into Rome on a triumphal chariot, preceded by a parade carrying spoils from the war in Judaea. The painting anachronistically features the Arch of Titus, which was not completed until the reign of Domitian. The Triumph of Titus by Lawrence Alma-Tadema (1885). This painting depicts the triumphal procession of Titus and his family. Alma-Tadema was known for his meticulous historical research on the ancient world. Vespasian, dressed as Pontifex Maximus, walks at the head of his family, followed by Domitian and his first wife Domitia Longina, who he had only recently married. Behind Domitian follows Titus, dressed in religious regalia. World-renowned expert numismatist, enthusiast, author and dealer in authentic ancient Greek, ancient Roman, ancient Byzantine, world coins & more. Ilya Zlobin is an independent individual who has a passion for coin collecting, research and understanding the importance of the historical context and significance all coins and objects represent. Send me a message about this and I can update your invoice should you want this method. Getting your order to you, quickly and securely is a top priority and is taken seriously here. Great care is taken in packaging and mailing every item securely and quickly. What is a certificate of authenticity and what guarantees do you give that the item is authentic? You will be very 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. Additionally, the coin is inside it’s own protective coin flip (holder), with a 2×2 inch description of the coin matching the individual number on the COA. Whether your goal is to collect or give the item as a gift, coins presented like this could be more prized and valued higher than items that were not given such care and attention to. When should I leave feedback? Please don’t leave any negative feedbacks, as it happens sometimes that people rush to leave feedback before letting sufficient time for their 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. How and where do I learn more about collecting ancient coins? Visit the Guide on How to Use My Store. For on an overview about using my store, with additional information and links to all other parts of my store which may include educational information on topics you are looking for. The item “TITUS 77AD Rome Authentic Ancient Silver Roman Coin MOM Pig Sow & Piglets i63378″ is in sale since Monday, August 14, 2017. 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: Titus
  • Ancient Coins: Roman Coins
  • Coin Type: Ancient Roman
  • Denomination: Denarius
  • Composition: Silver
  • Material: Silver

Nov 7 2018

VESPASIAN 77AD SOW & PIGLETS Lares of Rome RARE Ancient Silver Roman Coin i57869

VESPASIAN 77AD SOW & PIGLETS Lares of Rome RARE Ancient Silver Roman Coin i57869

VESPASIAN 77AD SOW & PIGLETS Lares of Rome RARE Ancient Silver Roman Coin i57869

VESPASIAN 77AD SOW & PIGLETS Lares of Rome RARE Ancient Silver Roman Coin i57869

Item: i57869 Authentic Ancient Coin of. Vespasian – Roman Emperor: 69-79 A. Silver Denarius 17mm (2.44 grams) Rome mint, circa 77-78 A. Reference: RIC 983; RSC 213 VESPASIANVS AVG CAESAR, Laureate head right. IMP XIX, Sow walking left, three piglets below. Lares Grundules: the thirty “grunting Lares”, supposedly given an altar and cult by Romulus or Aeneas when a sow produced a prodigous farrow of thirty piglets. According to Dionysius of Halicarnassus the place where the sow bore the piglets and Aeneas made the sacrifice was sacred, and forbidden to foreigners. The sow’s body was said to be kept at Lavinium, preserved in salt brine as a sacred object. The thirty piglets would provide the theological justification for the thirty populi Albenses of the feriae Latinae (the thirty fortified boroughs supposedly founded by Aeneas at Lavinium), and the thirty curiae of Rome. Lares (singular Lar), archaically Lases , were guardian deities in ancient Roman religion. Their origin is uncertain; they may have been hero-ancestors, guardians of the hearth, fields, boundaries or fruitfulness, or an amalgam of these. Lares were believed to observe, protect and influence all that happened within the boundaries of their location or function. The statues of domestic Lares were placed at table during family meals; their presence, cult and blessing seem to have been required at all important family events. Roman writers sometimes identify or conflate them with ancestor-deities, domestic Penates and the hearth. Because of these associations, Lares are sometimes categorised as household gods but some had much broader domains. Roadways, seaways, agriculture, livestock, towns, cities, the state and its military were all under the protection of their particular Lar or Lares. Those who protected local neighbourhoods (vici) were housed in the crossroad shrines (Compitales) which served as a focus for the religious, social and political life of their local, overwhelmingly plebeian communities. Their cult officials included freedmen and slaves, otherwise excluded by status or property qualification from most administrative and religious offices. Compared to Rome’s major deities Lares had limited scope and potency but archaeological and literary evidence attests to their central role in Roman identity and religious life. By analogy, a homeward-bound Roman could be described as returning ad Larem (to the Lar). Despite official bans on non-Christian cults from the late 4th century AD onwards, unofficial cults to Lares persisted until at least the early 5th century AD. Lavinium was a port city of Latium , 53 km (33 mi) to the south of Rome, at a median distance between the Tiber river at Ostia and Anzio. The coastline then, as now, was a long strip of beach. Lavinium was on a hill at the southernmost edge of the Silva Laurentina , a dense laurel forest, and the northernmost edge of the Pontine Marshes , a vast malarial tract of wetlands. The basis for the port, the only one between Ostia and Anzio, was evidently the mouth of the Numicus or Numicius river. The Alban hills loom in the background. The location of Lavinium has never been lost to historians nor does there appear to have been any significant break in its habitation. Today’s settlement remains a walled village of medieval design, Pratica di Mare, in the comune of Pomezia. The latter is a city constructed in 1939 and settled according to a plan of Benito Mussolini , whose engineers completed the millennia-long task of draining and filling the marsh, now the Pontine fields. A brief strip of field separates the large and flourishing city from the village. The castle and the village are periodically redesigned and updated. Is this still true? All that remains of the river that once partly surrounded the village is a small stream, the Fosso di Pratica. Pratica is about 6 km (3.7 mi) from the Tyrrhenian Sea near the top of a slope descending to an alluvial shelf on which a modern air base, Pratica di Mare Air Force Base , a facility of the Aeronautica Militare , has been placed. It has the historical distinction of being the airfield from which Otto Skorzeny flew Il Duce (Benito Mussolini) to safety in Germany after his rescue from imprisonment in a mountain villa. Today the base is both a secure airport for the protection of distinguished visitors to the Rome region and a home for air shows of advanced aircraft. The Fosso di Pratica was re-routed around the end of a runway; however, today’s small brook is in no way compatible with the concept of a port. The sea may well have formerly extended up to the base of the hill, as sites further north, such as Ostia, appear to have retreated one or two miles inland. Ancient Roman seaside villas are no longer on the beach. Pratica is observably smaller than ancient Lavinium, whose remains crop out in the surrounding fields. Recent archaeological excavations performed to the south date Lavinium to well before the legendary foundation of Rome. It was already fortified in the 7th century BCE and flourishing in the 6th. Lavinium was assimilated by Republican Rome. It was connected to Rome in the north and Ardea to the south by the Via Laurentina. Under the empire it was combined with the mysterious Laurentum , where many wealthy Romans maintained a winter villa, to become Laurolavinium. The nature of the union remains ambiguous. A number of kilns have been identified within the perimeter of the city walls. Outside the city was a sanctuary dedicated to Sol Indigetes and a vast sanctuary with numerous altars, where the bronze inscribed plaque records that the Dioscuri were being venerated at one of numerous altars. According to Roman mythology, which links Lavinium more securely to Rome, the city was named by Aeneas in honor of Lavinia , daughter of Latinus , king of the Latins , and his wife, Amata. Aeneas reached Italy and there fought a war against Turnus , the leader of the local Rutuli people. He did not found Rome but Lavinium, the main centre of the Latin league, from which the people of Rome sprang. Aeneas thus links the royal house of Troy with the Roman republic. The foundation of Lavinium and the Rutulian war are both mentioned prominently in the great Roman epic, the Aeneid by the Mantuan poet Publius Vergilius Maro (Virgil). In ancient times Lavinium had a close association with the nearby Laurentum. According to Livy , in the 8th century BC at the time when Romulus and Titus Tatius jointly ruled Rome, the ambassadors of the Laurentes came to Rome but were beaten by Tatius’ relatives. The Laurentes complained, but Tatius accorded more weight to the influence of his relatives than to the injury done the Laurentes. When Tatius afterwards visited Lavinium to celebrate an anniversary sacrifice, he was slain in a tumult. Romulus declined to go to war and instead renewed the treaty between Rome and Lavinium. In 509 BC, after the overthrow of the Roman monarchy, one of Rome’s first two consuls Lucius Tarquinius Collatinus was convinced to leave Rome because of his relation to the kings. He voluntarily went into exile in Lavinium. More recently, the city is the setting of the modern epic poem, The Laviniad by Claudio R. Vespasian – Roman Emperor : 69-79 A. Sole Reign (with Titus and Domitian as Caesars) 71-79 A. Sole Reign (with Titus as Imperator and Domitian as Caesar). Titus Flavius Vespasianus , known in English as Vespasian. 79 AD, was a Roman Emperor who reigned from 69 AD until his death in 79 AD. Vespasian was the founder of the short-lived Flavian dynasty , which ruled the Roman Empire between 69 AD and 96 AD He was succeeded by his sons Titus (7981) and Domitian (8196). Vespasian descended from a family of equestrians which rose into the senatorial rank under the emperors of the Julio-Claudian dynasty. Although he attained the standard succession of public offices, holding the consulship in 51, Vespasian became more reputed as a successful military commander, partaking in the Roman invasion of Britain in 43, and subjugating the Judaea province during the Jewish rebellion of 66. While Vespasian was preparing to besiege the city of Jerusalem during the latter campaign, emperor Nero committed suicide, plunging the Roman Empire into a year of civil war known as the Year of the Four Emperors. After Galba and Otho perished in quick succession, Vitellius became emperor in mid 69. In response, the armies in Egypt and Judaea themselves declared Vespasian emperor on July 1. Vitellius was defeated, and the following day, Vespasian was declared emperor by the Roman Senate. Little factual information survives about Vespasian’s government during the ten years he was emperor. His reign is best known for financial reforms following the demise of the Julio-Claudian dynasty, the successful campaign against Judaea, and several ambitious construction projects such as the Colosseum. Upon his death on. He was succeeded by his eldest son Titus. Family and early career. Vespasian was born in Falacrina , in the Sabine country near Reate. His mother, Vespasia Polla , was the sister of a Senator. After prompting from his mother, Vespasian followed his older brother, also called Titus Flavius Sabinus , into public life. He served in the army as a military tribune in Thrace in 36. The following year he was elected quaestor and served in Crete and Cyrene. He rose through the ranks of Roman public office, being elected aedile on his second attempt in 39 and praetor on his first attempt in 40, taking the opportunity to ingratiate himself with the Emperor Caligula. In the meantime, he married Domitilla the Elder , the daughter of an equestrian from Ferentium. They had two sons, Titus Flavius Vespasianus b. 41 and Titus Flavius Domitianus b. 51, and a daughter, Domitilla b. Domitilla died before Vespasian became emperor. Thereafter his mistress, Caenis , was his wife in all but name until she died in 74. Upon the accession of Claudius as emperor in 41, Vespasian was appointed legate of Augusta Legio II , stationed in Germania , thanks to the influence of the Imperial freedman Narcissus. In 43, Vespasian and the II Augusta participated in the Roman invasion of Britain , and he distinguished himself under the overall command of Aulus Plautius. After participating in crucial early battles on the rivers Medway and Thames , he was sent to reduce the south west, penetrating through the modern counties of Hampshire , Wiltshire , Dorset , Somerset , Devon and Cornwall with the probable objectives of securing the south coast ports and harbours along with the tin mines of Cornwall and the silver and lead mines of Somerset. Vespasian marched from Noviomagus Reginorum (Chichester) to subdue the hostile Durotriges and Dumnonii tribes. Captured twenty oppida (towns, or more probably hill forts , including Hod Hill and Maiden Castle in Dorset). He also invaded Vectis (the Isle of Wight), finally setting up a fortress and legionary headquarters at Isca Dumnoniorum (Exeter). These successes earned him triumphal regalia (ornamenta triumphalia) on his return to Rome. Vespasian was elected consul for the last two months of 51, after which he withdrew from public life. He came out of retirement in 63 when he was sent as governor to Africa Province. According to Tacitus ii. 97, his rule was “infamous and odious” but according to Suetonius Vesp. 4, he was “upright and, highly honourable”. On one occasion he was pelted with turnips. Vespasian used his time in North Africa wisely. Corruption was so rife, that it was almost expected that a governor would come back from these appointments with his pockets full. During his time in North Africa, he found himself in financial difficulties and was forced to mortgage his estates to his brother. To revive his fortunes he turned to the mule trade and gained the nickname mulio (mule-driver). Returning from Africa, Vespasian toured Greece in Nero’s retinue, but lost Imperial favour after paying insufficient attention (some sources suggest he fell asleep) during one of the Emperor’s recitals on the lyre , and found himself in the political wilderness. However, in 66, Vespasian was appointed to conduct the war in Judea. A revolt there had killed the previous governor and routed Licinius Mucianus , the governor of Syria , when he tried to restore order. Two legions, with eight cavalry squadrons and 10 auxiliary cohorts, were therefore dispatched under the command of Vespasian to add to the one already there. His elder son, Titus, served on his staff. During this time he became the patron of Flavius Josephus , a Jewish resistance leader turned Roman agent who would go on to write his people’s history in Greek. In the end, thousands of Jews were killed and many towns destroyed by the Romans, who successfully re-established control over Judea. They took Jerusalem in 70. He is remembered by Jews as a fair and humane official, in contrast to the notorious Herod the Great. Josephus wrote that after the Roman Legio X Fretensis accompanied by Vespasian destroyed Jericho on. He took a group of Jews who could not swim (possibly Essenes from Qumran), fettered them, and threw them into the Dead Sea to test its legendary buoyancy. Sure enough, the Jews shot back up after being thrown in from boats and floated calmly on top of the sea. Year of Four Emperors. Main article: Year of the Four Emperors. Map of the Roman Empire during the Year of the Four Emperors (69 AD). Blue areas indicate provinces loyal to Vespasian and Gaius Licinius Mucianus. After the death of Nero in 68, Rome saw a succession of short-lived emperors and a year of civil wars. Galba was murdered by Otho , who was defeated by Vitellius. Otho’s supporters, looking for another candidate to support, settled on Vespasian. According to Suetonius, a prophecy ubiquitous in the Eastern provinces claimed that from Judaea would come the future rulers of the world. Vespasian eventually believed that this prophecy applied to him, and found a number of omens , oracles , and portents that reinforced this belief. He also found encouragement in Mucianus, the governor of Syria; and, although Vespasian was a strict disciplinarian and reformer of abuses, Vespasian’s soldiers were thoroughly devoted to him. All eyes in the East were now upon him. Mucianus and the Syrian legions were eager to support him. While he was at Caesarea , he was proclaimed emperor. , first by the army in Egypt under Tiberius Julius Alexander , and then by his troops in Judaea (July 11 according to Suetonius, July 3 according to Tacitus). Nevertheless, Vitellius , the occupant of the throne, had Rome’s best troops on his side the veteran legions of Gaul and the Rhineland. But the feeling in Vespasian’s favour quickly gathered strength, and the armies of Moesia , Pannonia , and Illyricum soon declared for him, and made him the de facto master of half of the Roman world. While Vespasian himself was in Egypt securing its grain supply , his troops entered Italy from the northeast under the leadership of M. They defeated Vitellius’s army (which had awaited him in Mevania) at Bedriacum (or Betriacum), sacked Cremona and advanced on Rome. They entered Rome after furious fighting. In the resulting confusion, the Capitol was destroyed by fire and Vespasian’s brother Sabinus was killed by a mob. On receiving the tidings of his rival’s defeat and death at Alexandria , the new emperor at once forwarded supplies of urgently needed grain to Rome, along with an edict or a declaration of policy, in which he gave assurance of an entire reversal of the laws of Nero, especially those relating to treason. While in Egypt he visited the Temple of Serapis , where reportedly he experienced a vision. Later he was confronted by two labourers who were convinced that he possessed a divine power that could work miracles. Aftermath of the civil war. Bust of Vespasian, Pushkin Museum , Moscow. Vespasian was declared emperor by the Senate while he was in Egypt in December of 69 (the Egyptians had declared him emperor in June of 69). In the short-term, administration of the empire was given to Mucianus who was aided by Vespasian’s son, Domitian. By his own example of simplicity of life he caused something of a scandal when it was made known he took his own boots off he initiated a marked improvement in the general tone of society in many respects. In early 70, Vespasian was still in Egypt, the source of Rome’s grain supply, and had not yet left for Rome. According to Tacitus , his trip was delayed due to bad weather. Modern historians theorize that Vespasian had been and was continuing to consolidate support from the Egyptians before departing. Stories of a divine Vespasian healing people circulated in Egypt. In addition to the uprising in Egypt, unrest and civil war continued in the rest of the empire in 70. In Judea, rebellion had continued from 66. Vespasian’s son, Titus , finally subdued the rebellion with the capture of Jerusalem and destruction of the Jewish Temple in 70. According to Eusebius , Vespasian then ordered all descendants of the royal line of David to be hunted down, causing the Jews to be persecuted from province to province. Several modern historians have suggested that Vespasian, already having been told by Josephus that he was prophesied to become emperor whilst in Judaea, was probably reacting to other widely-known Messianic prophecies circulating at the time, to suppress any rival claimants arising from that dynasty. In January of the same year, an uprising occurred in Gaul and Germany, known as the second Batavian Rebellion. This rebellion was headed by Gaius Julius Civilis and Julius Sabinus. Sabinus, claiming he was descended from Julius Caesar , declared himself emperor of Gaul. The rebellion defeated and absorbed two Roman legions before it was suppressed by Vespasian’s brother-in-law, Quintus Petillius Cerialis , by the end of 70. Arrival in Rome and gathering support. In mid-70, Vespasian first came to Rome. Vespasian immediately embarked on a series of efforts to stay in power and prevent future revolts. He offered gifts to many in the military and much of the public. Soldiers loyal to Vitellius were dismissed or punished. He also restructured the Senatorial and Equestrian orders, removing his enemies and adding his allies. Regional autonomy of Greek provinces was repealed. Additionally, he made significant attempts to control public perception of his rule. Many modern historians note the increased amount of propaganda that appeared during Vespasian’s reign. Stories of a supernatural emperor who was destined to rule circulated in the empire. Nearly one-third of all coins minted in Rome under Vespasian celebrated military victory or peace. The word vindex was removed from coins so as not to remind the public of rebellious Vindex. Construction projects bore inscriptions praising Vespasian and condemning previous emperors. A temple of peace was constructed in the forum as well. Vespasian approved histories written under his reign, ensuring biases against him were removed. Vespasian also gave financial rewards to ancient writers. The ancient historians who lived through the period such as Tacitus , Suetonius , Josephus and Pliny the Elder speak suspiciously well of Vespasian while condemning the emperors who came before him. Tacitus admits that his status was elevated by Vespasian, Josephus identifies Vespasian as a patron and savior, and Pliny dedicated his Natural Histories to Vespasian, Titus. Those who spoke against Vespasian were punished. A number of stoic philosophers were accused of corrupting students with inappropriate teachings and were expelled from Rome. Helvidius Priscus , a pro-republic philosopher, was executed for his teachings. Construction of the Flavian Amphitheatre, better known as the Colosseum , was begun by Vespasian, and ultimately finished by his son Titus. Between 71 and 79, much of Vespasian’s reign is a mystery. Historians report that Vespasian ordered the construction of several buildings in Rome. Additionally, he survived several conspiracies against him. Vespasian helped rebuild Rome after the civil war. He added the temple of Peace and the temple to the Deified Claudius. In 75, he erected a colossal statue of Apollo , begun under Nero , and he dedicated a stage of the theater of Marcellus. He also began construction of the Colosseum. Suetonius claims that Vespasian was met with “constant conspiracies” against him. Only one conspiracy is known specifically, though. In 78 or 79, Eprius Marcellus and Aulus Caecina Alienus attempted to kill Vespasian. Why these men turned against Vespasian is not known. Military pursuits and death. In 78, Agricola was sent to Britain , and both extended and consolidated the Roman dominion in that province, pushing his way into what is now Scotland. On June 23 of the following year, Vespasian was on his deathbed and expiring rapidly, he demanded that he be helped to stand as he believed “An emperor should die on his feet”. He died of an intestinal inflammation which led to excessive diarrhea. His purported great wit can be glimpsed from his last words; Væ, puto deus fio , Damn. Vespasian was known for his wit and his amiable manner alongside his commanding persona and military prowess. He could be liberal to impoverished Senators and equestrians and to cities and towns desolated by natural calamity. He was especially generous to men of letters and rhetors , several of whom he pensioned with salaries of as much as 1,000 gold pieces a year. Quintilian is said to have been the first public teacher who enjoyed this imperial favor. Pliny the Elder’s work, the Natural History , was written during Vespasian’s reign, and dedicated to Vespasian’s son Titus. Vespasian distrusted philosophers in general, viewing them as unmanly complainers who talked too much. It was the idle talk of philosophers, who liked to glorify the good times of the Republic , that provoked Vespasian into reviving the obsolete penal laws against this profession as a precautionary measure. Only one however, Helvidius Priscus , was put to death, and he had repeatedly affronted the Emperor by studied insults which Vespasian had initially tried to ignore, “I will not kill a dog that barks at me, ” were his words on discovering Priscus’s public slander. Vespasian was indeed noted for mildness when dealing with political opposition. According to Suetonius, he bore the frank language of his friends, the quips of pleaders, and the impudence of the philosophers with the greatest patience. Marcus Didius Falco novels. The Course of Honour , a novel by Lindsey Davis. Edward Rutherfurd’s historical fiction novel Sarum contains an account of one the protagonists’ (a Celtic chief) meeting Vespasian during his campaign through southern Britannia. Vespasian, as legate under Aulus Plautius , is a regular secondary character in Simon Scarrow’s Eaglegle series. Ilya Zlobin, world-renowned expert numismatist, enthusiast, author and dealer in authentic ancient Greek, ancient Roman, ancient Byzantine, world coins & more. Ilya Zlobin is an independent individual who has a passion for coin collecting, research and understanding the importance of the historical context and significance all coins and objects represent. Send me a message about this and I can update your invoice should you want this method. Getting your order to you, quickly and securely is a top priority and is taken seriously here. Great care is taken in packaging and mailing every item securely and quickly. What is a certificate of authenticity and what guarantees do you give that the item is authentic? You will be very 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. Additionally, the coin is inside it’s own protective coin flip (holder), with a 2×2 inch description of the coin matching the individual number on the COA. Whether your goal is to collect or give the item as a gift, coins presented like this could be more prized and valued higher than items that were not given such care and attention to. Is there a number I can call you with questions about my order? When should I leave feedback? Please don’t leave any negative feedbacks, as it happens sometimes that people rush to leave feedback before letting sufficient time for their 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. How and where do I learn more about collecting ancient coins? Visit the “Guide on How to Use My Store” for on an overview about using my store, with additional information and links to all other parts of my store which may include educational information on topics you are looking for. You may also want to do a YouTube search for the term “ancient coin collecting” for educational videos on this topic. The item “VESPASIAN 77AD SOW & PIGLETS Lares of Rome RARE Ancient Silver Roman Coin i57869″ is in sale since Monday, November 7, 2016. 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: Vespasian
  • Composition: Silver