ROMAN EMPIRE Valentinian II 375-392 AD maiorina Antioch mint


ROMAN EMPIRE, Valentinian II, 375-392 AD, maiorina, no date (387-92 AD), Antioch mint, officina 4, Obverse: diademed bust R, D N VALENTINIANVS P F AVG, Reverse: emperor standing R holding standard & globe, stepping on captive, VIRTVS EXERCITI, ANTĪ”, bronze, 22mm, 5.8g, SR20286, dirt was scraped with a knife, F

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Valentinian II was the younger son of Valentinian I, made co-Emperor with his brother Gratian at the age of four. When his father died Gratian was forced to accept his brother by a faction. He was too weak to confront the usurper Magnus Maximus, who was defeated by the Eastern Emperor Theodosius. Theodosius sent Valentinian II to Gaul in the care of the German commander Arbogastes, where he died.

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.