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    Description

    Medallic Solidus

    Constantius II (AD 337-361). AV solidus (23mm, 4.52 gm, 12h).  Nicomedia, AD 340-351. F IVL CONSTAN-TIVS PERP AVG, rosette-diademed, draped and cuirassed bust of Constantius right, seen from front / VICTORIA AVGVSTORVM, Victory running left, holding in right hand a wreath enclosing XXV, and with her left hand holding a palm branch and cradling a military trophy over her left shoulder; at her feet to left, captive wearing a pointed cap and raising both hands, SMNS? in exergue. RIC --, cf. 26 (no dot in mintmark). Cohen 237. An extremely rare variant (mintmark) of an already rare type! Struck on a broad, medallic flan. Small surface marks and a tiny base metal inclusion on reverse. NGC (photo-certificate) MS 4/5 - 3/5.

    From The Andre Constantine Dimitriadis Collection. Ex Dreesmann Collection (Spink London, 13 April 2000), lot 194; SKA 7 (Zurich, 27-29 April 1987), lot 1003. 

    The third son of Constantine the Great, Constantius II ended up as the most successful of Constantine's heirs. Born in AD 317, Flavius Julius Valerius Constantius grew up in the newly dominant Christian faith. In August of AD 324, he was raised to the rank of Caesar along with his younger brother Constans. When Constantine died in May of AD 337, Constantius received the prosperous Eastern portion of the Roman Empire, including the Syrian city of Antioch, which he made his capital. He formed a tacit alliance with Constans against the eldest son and senior emperor, Constantine II, who died in a fratricidal skirmish in AD 340. In the territorial redistribution, Constantius took over the prestigious capital city of Constantinople. A long-running border war with the Sasanian Persians kept Constantius preoccupied, and when Constans was overthrown by the usurper Magnentius in AD 350, it took Constantius a year to disengage his army and march westward to put down the pretender. The eastern and western armies clashed at Mursa on September 28, AD 351, in one of the bloodiest battles of the century. Magnentius fared worse and retreated, but it took Constantius two more years to finally stamp out the rebelion and force his rival's suicide. With the Persians again threatening the eastern frontier, Constantius named his cousin Julian as Caesar in AD 355 to mind affairs in the west while he returned to Antioch. But Julian was too successful, and his popularity roused Constantius' suspicious nature. He forced Julian into open revolt in AD 360, but before full-scale civil war could erupt, Constantius fell ill and died in on November 3, AD 361. He had reigned with dour, plodding competence for 24 years and left a fairly stable and prosperous Empire to his successors.

    All Roman gold coins from the Dimitriadis Collection have been issued a photo-certificate by NGC. These may be sent in for encapsulation after the auction at the request of the buyer, free of charge. Please e-mail SamS@HA.com if you would like to utilize this option.


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    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    April, 2014
    10th-16th Thursday-Wednesday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 4
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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