AE Antoninianus. 3.72g, 24mm
MINTED: Antioch mint, AD 267
REF: RIC 612; Sear 10403
OBVERSE: GALLIENVS AVG, radiate, draped and cuirassed bust right.
REVERSE: VIRTVS AVG, Virtus standing right, holding shield and spear; PXV in exergue.
Very Fine. Almost fully silvered; slightly porous. Struck on a broad, oval flan.
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 . "Virtus" . Silvered
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