AE Follis. 2.84g, 18.4mm
MINTED: Siscia mint, Officina 1, AD 319
REF: RIC VII Siscia 86 (R3)
OBVERSE: IMP LICI-NIVS AVG, laureate head right.
REVERSE: VICT • LAETAE PRINC PERP, two Victories, standing facing each other, holding wreath between them inscribed VOT/PR set upon an altar decorated with letter the “I”; •ASIS• in exergue.
Almost Very Fine. Nice brown patina, some surface roughness, but better in hand.
A less common type for Licinius. Struck at Siscia, which Constantine had won from Licinius in 317, but during a period of cessation of hostility between the two emperors. The reverse legend, VICTORIAE LAETAE PRINC PERP, translates to 'Joyous Victory of the Eternal Prince'.
Licinius was the son of a peasant family who, through his friendship with future emperor Galerius, was eventually appointed as Augustus in the West. In the final civil war that followed the collapse of the Tetrarchy (the period when the Roman Empire was ruled by four emperors), Licinius lost the struggle for supremacy against his great rival, Constantine the Great, and was put to death after a rule of 16 years. Contemporary writers, eager to please the new sole Augustus of the empire, blackened the name and legacy of Licinius, painting him as a murderous, lustful, and envious pagan tyrant.
LICINIUS I . AD 308-324 . Follis . "Joyous Victory of the Eternal Prince"
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