AD 253-268

Billon Antoninianus. 4.15g, 22mm

MINTED: Antioch mint, AD 264
REF: RIC V 672, RSC IV 1321, AHG 519 (this coin)
OBVERSE: GALLIENVS P F AVG, radiate and cuirassed bust right.

REVERSE: VIRTVS AVGVSTI, Hercules standing right, right hand on hip, left holding lion skin and resting on a club set on rock.



From the Antioch Hoard of Gallienus

This coin is part of a published hoard of 583 coins (The Antioch Hoard of Gallienus, by Malloy, Sorenson, Percival, 1992).  The hoard was most likely formed in the 3rd century near the mint city of Antioch.  The high quality and general lack of circulation wear of the coins hoarded suggest that the owner was fairly wealthy and had access to freshly-minted coins.  Coins of Gallienus are most numerous (311), followed by those of Valerian (114).  The earliest coin is that of Elagabalus, and the latest, Aurelian.  An e-link to the full published analysis of the hoard is available.


Almost Very Fine.


Historical Notes:

Gallienus was co-emperor with his father, Valerian, from 253 until 260, when the latter was defeated and captured by the Persian king, Shapur the Great.  History does not record if Gallienus attempted any recovery of his father, but he did continue his own sole rule of an empire that was rapidly becoming a shadow of its former self.  Much of the Roman East had been ravaged by the Persians, and the provinces of Gaul, Germany, Raetia, Britannia and Hispania broke away to form a Gallic Empire under the usurper Postumus.  After surrendering rule of the eastern provinces to the Palmyrene nobleman, Odenathus, Gallienus controlled only Italy and the Balkans directly.  While many sources paint Gallienus as an irresponsible, indolent and decadent ruler, others record that he successfully repelled a host of barbarian invaders and crushed a number of rebellions.  In fact, it was while besieging the rebel general Aureolus at Mediolanum (Milan) in 268 that Gallienus was assassinated.

GALLIENUS . AD 253-268 . Antoninianus . **From the Antioch Hoard of Gallienus**

SKU: 036
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