ROMAN EMPIRE, Tetricus II, 274 AD, antoninianius


ROMAN EMPIRE, Tetricus II, 274 AD, antoninianius, no date (274 AD), Cologne mint, Obverse: radiate bust R, IMP C TETRICVS P F AVG, Reverse: Salus standing L holding wreath & anchor, SALVS AVG, billon, 17-19mm, 3.9g, SR11248, XF

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Tetricus II was the son of Tetricus I, who ruled the breakaway Gallic Empire. He was made Caesar as a child, was captured with his father by Roman Emperor Aurelian, who spared their lives.

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.