ROMAN EMPIRE Gallienus 253-268 AD antoninianus Rome mint


ROMAN EMPIRE, Gallienus, 253-268 AD, antoninianus, no date (262-3 AD), Rome mint, officina 2, Obverse: radiate bust R, GALLIENVS AVG, Reverse: Fortuna standing L holding rudder and cornucopia, FORTUNA REDVX, S, billon, 18-20mm oval, 2.73g, SR10219, well struck rev., crude, VF

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Gallienus, son of Valerian I, was raised to co-Emperor by his father. In the midst of war between Rome and several enemies he carried out major reforms of administration, the military, and the economy. As was frequently the case in that century, he was assassinated by members of his staff while fighting against a rebel.

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.