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    Description

    Defeat and Victory in Armenia

    Marcus Aurelius (AD 161-180). AV aureus (7.28 gm). Rome, AD 164. ANTONINVS AVG ARMENIACVS, laureate, cuirassed bust of Marcus Aurelius right / P M TR P XVIII IMP II COS III, Victory standing right affixing shield inscribed VIC AVG to palm tree. RIC III 90 variant (bust type). Cohen 467. Calico 1888. Extremely fine and lustrous.

    As with most conflicts between Rome and Parthia, the great Eastern War of AD 161-166 was sparked by events in Armenia, the buffer between the two states. In AD 161, the Parthian king Vologases IV marched into Armenia and evicted its pro-Roman king, replacing him with his kinsman Pacorus. The Roman governor of Cappadocia marched into Armenia with a legion (perhaps the supposed 'lost legion' IX Hispana), but the Parthian general Chosroes surrounded the Romans and slaughtered them to a man, the worst military disaster to befall the Empire in nearly a century. The newly installed co-Emperors Marcus Aurelius and Lucius Verus responded by raising a massive expeditionary force and sending it east under Verus' supposed command, but in reality commanded by the skilled general Avidius Cassius. After many months of preparations, the Romans re-entered Armenia in 163, captured the capital of Artaxata and installed Sohaemus, a Roman citizen and Senator, on the throne. The Senate voted both Lucius Verus and Marcus Aurelius the title of Armeniacus, conqueror of Armenia, which is proudly displayed in its entirety on this gold aureus of AD 164.


    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    September, 2011
    7th-12th Wednesday-Monday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 7
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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