AMPHIPOLIS, Macrinus, 217-218 AD, bronze minor


MAKEDON, AMPHIPOLIS, Macrinus, 217-218 AD, minor, no date, Obverse: laureate bust R, AV M OPE SEU MAKRINOS, Reverse: city goddess seated L, holding patera, AMFIPOLITWN, bronze, 22mm, 5.53g, SGI2910, partial legend obverse, light pitting, aVF

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Macrinus was Praetorian Prefect (Commander of the Imperial Guard) for Caracalla when someone prophesied that he would become Emperor, implicating him in a treasonous plot without him doing anything. He decided that the only way out of execution when the Emperor heard about it was to assassinate his boss. Anarchy ensued as various players made their moves. He lasted about fourteen months.

The Romans, as they were building their empire, preferred to let the local coinage arrangements remain in place. As they developed their political system into the Cult of Personality that was the Empire, they started putting imperial portraits on the local coins. Later, as the Empire began to shrink, they preferred to centralize their coinage operations, eliminating local control. There were also allied and client states, some of which, at times, issued coins celebrating the alliance or subservience. The main catalog reference for these coins on this web site is Greek Imperial Coins and their Values, by David Sear.

Ancient Coins includes Greek and Roman coins and those of neighbors and successors, geographically from Morocco and Spain all the way to Afghanistan. Date ranges for these begin with the world’s earliest coins of the 8th century BC to, in an extreme case, the end of Byzantine Empire, 1453 AD.