MARCUS AURELIUS, as Caesar
AE As. 11.05g, 27.7mm
MINTED: Rome mint, circa AD 145
REF: RIC III Antoninus Pius 1258b (scarce)
OBVERSE: AVRELIVS CAESAR AVG PII F, bare head right.
REVERSE: COS II, Virtus, helmeted, in military dress, standing left, holding parazonium, pointed slightly upwards to left, in right hand and vertical spear in left, S-C in fields.
Very Fine. Rich, chocolate brown patina. Scarce.
Marcus Aurelius was one of the "Five Good Emperors" (so named by Niccolo Machiavelli) whose reigns during the 2nd century saw the Roman Empire prosper and reach the zenith of its military power. In his youth, Aurelius was most passionate about philosophy, and he was slow to embrace his responsibilities as a future emperor. However, under the guidance of his tutor, Fronto, and the stewardship of his adoptive father, the emperor Antoninus Pius, he eventually became a ruler who was, first and foremost, a selfless servant of the empire.
Aurelius is today perhaps best known as the author of Meditations, 12 books that collect his personal reflections on life and philosophy, and by doing so exemplify many chief principles of the Stoic school of thought that he followed. Historian Michael Grant wrote that Marcus Aurelius was "the noblest of all the men who, by sheer intelligence and force of character, have prized and achieved goodness for its own sake and not for any reward".
MARCUS AURELIUS, as Caesar . AD 138-161 . As . "Virtus" . Scarce
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