ROMAN EMPIRE Arcadius 383-408 AD centenionalis


ROMAN EMPIRE, Arcadius, 383-408 AD, centenionalis, no date (402 AD), Antioch mint, officina 3, Obverse: helmeted head 1/4 R, D N ARCADIVS P F AVG, Reverse: Constantinopolis enthroned facing, CONCORDIA AVGG, ANT?, bronze, 15mm, 1.98g, SR20807, ragged edge, aVF

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Arcadius was the older son of Theodosius the Great and Aelia Flaccilla. He and his brother are considered to be weak Emperors who allowed Barbarian generals to take care of business and fight with each other. The 1/4 right portrait style of the gold solidus first appeared during this reign.

In the Imperial Period Roman coinage became an engine for governmental propaganda. All of the themes of the coins are celebratory of some aspect of govermental authority or achievement.

The Roman Republic was founded in response to tyrannical kings. It functioned for several centuries in a kind of balance of rich and poor people (slaves didn’t count). The general idea was that laws would constrain personal power. During the days of Julius Caesar, et al, powerful people became too powerful, and a new system of slightly constrained autocracy, the Empire, developed. The main catalog we use on this web site for Roman coins is Roman 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.