ROMAN EMPIRE, Tetricus I, 270-273 AD, billon antoninianius


ROMAN EMPIRE, Tetricus I, 270-273 AD, antoninianius, no date (272 AD), Cologne mint, Obverse: radiate head R, IMP TETRICVS AVG, Reverse: Laetitia standing L, holding wreath and anchor, LAETITIA AVG N, billon, 18mm, 2.74g, SR11240, XF

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Tetricus I was a relative of the Gallic Emperor Victorinus. When Victorinus was assassinated some maneuvering by the Victoria family put Tetricus on the rebel throne. He found himself fighting a losing battle against Rome, which was resolved when Tetricus was captured by the Roman Emperor Aurelian. Aurelian allowed him to live, and even gave him a job in the bureaucracy.

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.