ROMAN EMPIRE, Caracalla, 198-217 AD, denarius

$60.00

ROMAN EMPIRE, Caracalla, 198-217 AD, denarius, no date (205 AD), Rome mint, Obverse: laureate beardless bust R, ANTONINVS PIVS AVG, Reverse: Felicity standing L holding caducaeus & cornucopia, FELICITAS AVGG. , silver, 19mm, 3.42g, SR6799, XF/VF+

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SKU: s2952a5714 Categories: ,

Description

Caracalla was a nickname for Marcus Aurelius Antoninus, for a kind of cloak he liked to wear. His reign was troubled from the beginning by the unfortunate antipathy between him and his brother Geta, who he eventually murdered. He did a bunch of civil building, and granted citizenship to all of the inhabitants of the Empire. He also liked war perhaps a bit more than he should have, picking unnecessary fights. Eventually he was assassinated on his way to a war with Parthia.

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 Empire was split for administrative purposes into eastern and western branches, the west devolving into local kingdoms in the 5th century AD, while the eastern branch continued as what we call the Byzantine Empire until 1453.

“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.