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Today, October 28, is the Anniversary of a Famous Roman Battle


LONGINUS
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Milvian Bridge in the Year 312 CE

This is my one and only Constantine I but I plan to expand my collection of fourth century Roman coins in the coming year.

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Please feel free to post your Constantine I coins or any other ancient coins featuring battles or bridges. 

 

 

Edited by LONGINUS
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Who would have imagined at the time that this battle would have become a world-changing event, right? Great write-up, @LONGINUS!

I have one of these little posthumous bronzes, too, but with a different reverse type.

559472921_ConstantineI(posthumous)VNMRreducedcentenionalisNicomedia.jpg.b03dc9685f8c384461bee35e0a53c54b.jpg
Divus Constantine I, AD 307-337.
Roman billon reduced centenionalis, 1.69 g, 13.8 mm, 11 h.
Nicomedia, 4th officina, AD 347-348.
Obv: DV CONSTANTI-NVS PT AVGG, veiled and draped bust, right.
Rev: VN-MR either side of Constantine, veiled and togate, standing right; SMNΔ• in exergue.
Refs: RIC viii p. 475, 57; LRBC I 1155; Cohen 716; RCV 17469.

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The coin pictured below is my favorite Constantine I nummus ☺️.

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Constantine I as Caesar, AD 306-309 (struck circa summer of AD 307). Treveri Mint, 1st Officina. Billon Nummus: 29 mm, 8.73 gm, 6 h. Obverse: Laureate & cuirassed bust with slight drapery at shoulder. Reverse: Genius with turret crown holding patera & cornucopia. RIC 719b. Ex CNG Inventory 774824, July 2006. 

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I do not have any coins with bridges (one of them is on my radar but it will be a tough cookie).

My favorite Constantine I coin is this fairly recent acquisition. I was not aware of the type until I saw it, a few days before the auction, read about it and decided it is a good addition.

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Constantine I the Great AD 306-337. Treveri

19 mm, 2,12 g

BI argenteus, AD 310-313. IMP CONSTANTI-NVS AVG, cuirassed bust of Constantine left, wearing helmet with high crest, spear in right hand over shoulder, mappa in left / VICTORIAE LAETAE PRINC PERP, two Victories standing facing each other, holding shield inscribed VOT PR on altar; PTR in exergue. RIC VI -- (cf. RIC VII 208a); RSC 643. Note from Beast Coins research site: RIC VII describes this coin as an AE folles (or AE3), however, this series coincides with other series from other mints, where Constantine introduced a billon argenteus denomination. Both the AE3 module and AR argenteus will be listed under the same RIC number, even though this issue begins this reverse type and was actually minted in AD 310-313 and should have appeared in RIC VI with the other billon argentei issues of Licinius I and Maximinus II.

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Cool coin DR

Sadly, there's nothing related to the Milvian bridge in my trays, but a few CtG nonetheless

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Constantine the Great, Follis - Trier mint, 1st officina
IMP CONSTANTINVS PF AVG, Laureate and cuirassed bust of Constantine right
MARTI PATRI PROPVGNATORI, Mars walking right, holding spear and shield. S A in field, PTR at exergue
7.40 gr, 26 mm
Ref : RC #3864, Cohen #368

 

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Constantine the great, AE 3 - Rome mint, 2nd officina
CONSTANTINVS AVG, Laureate head of Constantine right
D N CONSTANTINI MAX AV, VOT XXX in a laurel wreath, RS at exergue
2.93 gr
Ref : Cohen #129, RC #3874 var

 

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Constantine The Great, AE3 - Ticinium mint, 3rd officina
IMP CONSTAN - TINVS MAX AVG, Draped, cuirassed bust of Constantinus right, wearing laureate helmet
VICTORIAE LAETAE PRINC PERP, Two victories, holding shield on wich is written VOT/PR, resting on cippus. TT at exergue
3.2 gr
Ref : RC #3883 var

Q

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Nice addition. And one can never have enough Constatine coins, there are many interesting types. 

Two of my favorites, with the 'eyes towards the heaven' obverse. Is it a Christian theme? Or a throwback to Greek hellenistic times? 

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Here is a bridge to somewhere. 

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Commemorative Series
Mint Constantinople
330 AD
Obvs: POP ROMANVS, Draped bust of genius left, cornucopia over shoulder.
Revs: Bridge over river, CONS ϴ above.
AE 15mm, 0.98g
Ref: RIC VIII.21

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Sadly, I don't have any coins of Constantine, but last night I watched the Yale lecture below. It discusses the battle of the Milvian Bridge (against Maxentius) and Chrysopolis (against Licinius). I had no idea that the anniversary was coming up the very next day (though the actual date might be a little off, or lost, due to all of the messing with the calendar in the interim, but it's probably close enough). Definitely a crucial battle for the ancient world and one whose outcomes and consequences we likely still live under to some extent. I need to get some Constantine coins.

Editorial: should I lose some faith in humanity when the search results for "Constantine" return far more about the Keanu Reeves movie than the historical emperor?

Edited by ewomack
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I have only a few Tetrarchic era folles and their patinas are pretty dark, so I photographed them in sunlight. The first depicts Maxentius in his consular garb claiming the consulship, for the second time, in 308 AD. This consulship was not acknowledged beyond Maxentius’ territories, I believe. The reverse inscription is not entirely clear to me, CONSERV URB SUAE ? Savior of his city? That would make sense as Maxentius took power at the urging of those in Rome who opposed the disbanding of the Praetorian Guard and the imposition of taxes on Romans who were previously exempt. I do not believe Maxentius had any military victories to lay claim to the title of savior of Rome. The coin is from Aquileia.  From Jerry Seigel, Heracles Numismatics, 11/02

The second coin is of Maxentius’ great rival, brother-in-law, and fellow son of an Augustus, Constantine. The reverse depicts Mars, the fighter for his country. My tag dates the coin to 307-8 AD, and the mint is Trier.   From Brian Kritt, 5/98,

Four years after the striking of these coins, Maxentius and Constantine would fight the famous Battle of the Milvian Bridge on October 28, 312 AD.

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Shortly after the victory, Rome issued two fractional coins to commemorate the event.

 

from my page

In 312, Constantine defeated Maxentius and the mint in Rome began striking coins of the same standard as the Gallic mints. The follis was the standard type and it was minted at close to 1/72 libra (roughly 4.5 grams based on a Roman pound of 327 grams), and the size was roughly 21millimeters in diameter. The main reverse types were GENIO POPVLI ROMANI, MARTI CONSERVATORI, SOLI INVICTO COMITI, and SPQR OPTIMO PRINCIPI. Two fractionals were also struck at Rome during this period and both bear denominational marks.

"It will be argued here that the fractions with the XII and XVI marks form a departure from the denominational system of fractions previously struck at Rome, that the radiate crown was used on the coins in order to identify a new denomination, and that the numerals XII and XVI were intended to indicate the official values of the new coins expressed in denarii." The weights of these two coins suggest that they were intended to weigh 2/3 and 1/2 of the follis.

http://www.constantinethegreatcoins.com/fractions/

 

the first pays homage to Constantine's Gallic troops

 

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Constantine I
A.D. 312- 313
2/3 follis 19x20mm 3.3g
FL VAL CONSTANTINVS AVG; radiate, draped and cuirassed bust right seen from the rear.
VIRT EXE-RCIT GALL; Virtus standing left, looking right, right leaning on spear, left holding parazonium;
In left field X, in right field VI.
In exergue RT
RIC VI Rome 360

 

the second proclaims (wishful) eternal peace

 

 

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Constantine I
AD 312-13
half follis 17mm 2.5gm
FL VAL CONSTANTINVS AVG laureate and cuirassed bust right.
PACI PERPET; Pax stg. facing, head l., r. holding branch, l. standard; in left field XII.
in ex. RP
RIC VI Rome 356

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Wonderful examples everyone. I have only one Constantine I which I got this week. Pretty average condition but at 5 Euros it didn't matter.

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Constantine I. AE 3 follis, Trier AD 310-311, under Constantine I

OBV: CONSTANTIVS AVG

Laureate and cuirassed, right.

REV: SOLIIN VICTO

Sol facing forward looking right, with chlamys over left shoulder, raising right hand and holding globe in left.

PTR in exergue

21.1mm, 2.98g

Riv VI Treveri 899

Puchased from Castellet Classical Numismatics

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This coin was struck shortly after the defeat of Maxentius and the reverse was struck only for Constantine.

 

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Constantine I
A.D. 312- 313
21mm 4.7g
IMP C CONSTANTINVS P F AVG; laureate and cuirassed bust right.
HERCVLI VICTORI; Hercules standing right, leaning on club and holding Victory on globe and lion’s skin.
In ex. R S (workshop not in RIC)
RIC VI Rome 299

 

Edited by Victor_Clark
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6 hours ago, wittwolff said:

The two opponents:

Coin from Constantine celebrating his victory over Maxentius:

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Coin from Maxentius the defender of Rome:

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Great idea to show the coins of the adversaries. Thank you for posting!

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Here are two coins of Constantine struck in 312/3:

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Constantine I, Roman Empire, AE3, 312–313 AD, Rome mint. Obv: IMP CONSTANTINVS P F AVG; bust of Constantine I, laureate, draped, cuirassed, r. Rev: SOLI INVICTO COMITI; Sol, chlamys hanging behind, standing l., raising r. hand and holding up globe in l. hand. 20mm, 2.96g. Ref: RIC VI Rom 323a.

 

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Constantine I, Roman Empire, AE2, 312–313 AD, Rome mint. Obv; IMP CONSTANTINVS PF AVG; bust of Constantine, draped and laureate, r. Rev: SPQR OPTIMO PRINCIPI; legionary eagle between two standards; in exergue, RP. 23.5mm, 3.43g. Ref: RIC VI Rome 348a.

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