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    Description

    Remarkable Gilt Medallion

    Constantius I Chlorus, as Caesar (AD 293-305). Æ gilt medallion (34mm, 24.41 gm, 12h). Choice VF. Rome, ca. AD 297-298.  CONSTANTI - VS NOB CAES, laureate half-length "heroic" bust of Constantius left, viewed from behind, holding shield on left shoulder, restraining strap across back, with spear to fore  / MONETA AV-GG, the Tres Monetae standing facing, heads left, each holding scales in right hand and cornucopia in left arm; piles of coins at their feet. Cohen --, cf. 191  (Constantius seen from front). Gnecchi --, cf. 2 (same). Unrecorded and apparently unique, with a forceful portrait and heroic bust in outstanding style, the surfaces retaining most of their original gilding.

    Roman medallions featuring the Tres (Three) Monetae were first issued by Commodus circa AD 190. The three goddesses recall the "tresviri monetales" of the Roman Republic, three magistrates appointed by the Senate to manage production of silver, gold and bronze coins. Medallions were produced by the Rome mint to mark each new year, and were handed out to important magistrates and military officers as personal gifts of the emperor. Production of these tokens increased during the Tetrarchy as medallions were struck for each ruler, the Augusti Diocletian and Maximian, and the Caesars Constantius and Galerius. It appears most or all bronze medallions were originally gilded to appear solid gold, although nearly all surviving specimens have lost their original coating. This remarkable medallion, retaining much of its original gilding, is also notable for the powerful half-length portrait of Constantius in "heroic nude" mode, recalling the coins portraits of Hellenistic kings struck nearly 500 years before. As no date is provided in the legend, we must look to the iconography for a possible date of issue: The militant portrait of Constantius as a conqueror suggests it may have been struck following his successful operation against the British usurper Allectus in AD 296 and the recovery of Britain to the Roman Empire.


    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    August, 2017
    3rd Thursday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 4
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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