As (Roman coin)
The as, assarius was a bronze, and copper, coin used during the Roman Republic and Roman Empire. The Romans replaced the usage of Greek coins, first by bronze ingots, the system thus named as was introduced in ca.280 BC as a large cast bronze coin during the Roman Republic. The following fractions of the as were produced, the bes, quincunx, quadrans, sextans and semuncia, as well as multiples of the as. After the as had issued as a cast coin for about seventy years, and its weight had been reduced in several stages. At about the time a silver coin, the denarius, was introduced. Earlier Roman silver coins had been struck on the Greek weight standards that facilitated their use in southern Italy and across the Adriatic, but all Roman coins were now on a Roman weight standard. The denarius, or tenner, was at first tariffed at ten asses and this is said to have been a result of financing the Punic Wars. During the Republic, the as featured the bust of Janus on the obverse, the as was originally produced on the libral and the reduced libral weight standard.
The bronze coinage of the Republic switched from being cast to being struck as the weight decreased, during certain periods, no asses were produced at all. The as continued to be produced until the 3rd century AD and it was the lowest valued coin regularly issued during the Roman Empire, with semis and quadrans being produced infrequently, and not at all by the time of Marcus Aurelius. The last as seems to have produced by Aurelian between 270 and 275 and at the beginning of the reign of Diocletian. The as, under its Greek name assarion, was re-established by the Emperor Andronikos II Palaiologos and it was a low-quality flat copper coin, weighing ca. 3–4 grams and forming the lowest denomination of contemporary Byzantine coinage and it appears that the designs on the assarion changed annually, hence they display great variations. The assarion was replaced in 1367 by two other denominations, the tournesion and the follaro
The dupondius was a brass coin used during the Roman Empire and Roman Republic valued at 2 aes. The dupondius was introduced during the Roman Republic as a bronze cast coin. The initial coins featured the bust of Roma on the obverse, some dupondii were made entirely from copper under Augustus, while under subsequent Nero some aes were made from both orichalcum and copper, instead of only copper for aes coined until then. Therefore, the latter can only be distinguished from dupondii by their smaller size instead of by the appearance of the metal. The dupondius was normally further distinguished from the similarly sized as with the addition of a crown to the bust of the emperor in 66 AD during the reign of Nero. Using a radiate crown to indicate double value was used on the antoninianus introduced by Caracalla. An extremely rare dupondius from the reign of Marcus Aurelius, dated to 154 or 155 and in excellent condition, was discovered in 2007 at the site in Drapers Gardens
Magnentius was a usurper of the Roman Empire from 350 to 353. Born in Samarobriva, Magnentius was the commander of the Herculians and Jovians, when the army grew dissatisfied with the behavior of Roman Emperor Constans, it elevated Magnentius at Autun on January 18,350. Constans was abandoned by all except a handful of retainers, Magnentius quickly attracted the loyalty of the provinces in Britannia and Hispania, in part because he proved to be far more tolerant towards both Christians and Pagans. His control on Italia and Africa was applied through the election of his men to the most important offices. However, the revolt of Nepotianus, a member of the Constantinian dynasty. Magnentius tried to strengthen his grasp on the previously controlled by Constans. Vetranio, commander of the Pannonian army, had been elected Augustus by his troops in Mursa on 1 March and this revolt had a loyalist mark, since Vetranio was supported by Constantina, and Constantius II himself recognized Vetranio, sending him the imperial diadem.
The remaining emperor of the family of Constantine I, Constantius II broke off his war in Syria with Persia, despite Magnentius efforts to gain Vetranio to his cause, the elderly Vetranio reached Constantius with his army, resigned the crown, and went into retirement in Bithynia. Despite Magnentius heroism, his troops were defeated and forced to back to Gaul. As a result of Magnentius defeat, Italy ejected his garrisons, Magnentius made a final stand in 353 in the Battle of Mons Seleucus, after which he committed suicide by falling on his sword. Following the suppression of Magnentius rebellion, Constantius commanded an investigation be made to find his followers, the most notorious agent in this search was the primicerius notariorum Paulus Catena. Some sources state that Magnentius father was a Briton and his mother a Frank and his wife, remarried to Valentinian I. Cameron and Peter Garnsey ed, the Cambridge Ancient History, Vol XIII, Cambridge University Press,1988. The revolt and ethnic origin of the usurper Magnentius, and the rebellion of Vetranio, media related to Magnentius at Wikimedia Commons
The quinarius was a small silver Roman coin valued at half a denarius. The quinarius was struck for a few years, along with the silver sestertius, at this time the quinarius was valued at 5 asses. The coin was reintroduced in 101 BC as a replacement for the victoriatus, for a few years following its reintroduction, large quantities of quinarii were produced, mostly for circulation in Gaul. The coin was produced sporadically until the 3rd century, the term gold quinarius or quinarius aureus is used to describe the half-aureus, which is valued at 12.5 denarii. This term has no ancient authority
The semuncia, symbol
Quincunx (Roman coin)
The quincunx was an ancient Roman bronze coin produced during the Roman Republic. It was not part of the standard Roman monetary system and it was only produced during the Second Punic War, by mints at Luceria, Teate and northern Apulia. A coin with the value was minted in Capua, during the Second Punic War. The word quincunx comes from Latin quinque which means five and uncia which means one twelfth and its value was sometimes represented by a pattern of five dots arranged like the points of a die, so this pattern came to be called quincunx
The Antoninianus, or radiate, was a coin used during the Roman Empire thought to have been valued at 2 denarii. It was initially silver, but was slowly debased to bronze with a silver content. Antoniniani depicting females, usually the wife, featured the bust resting upon a crescent moon. Even at its introduction the silver content was only equal to 1.5 denarii and this helped to create inflation, people rapidly hoarded the denarii, while both buyers and sellers recognised the new coin had a lower intrinsic value and elevated their prices to compensate. Each new issue of the Antoninianus thus had less silver in it than the last, in 271 Aurelian increased the average weight of the Antoninianus. This was carried out for a short time and this period was when the enigmatic XXI was first marked on the reverse of the Antoninianus. The true meaning of this series of numbers is still a topic of debate, by the late 3rd century the coins were almost entirely made of bronze from melted down old issues like the sestertius.
Vast quantities were being minted, with a proportion of the stocks being contemporary forgeries, often with blundered legends. Individual coins were by practically worthless and were lost or discarded by the millions, today most of these coins are extremely common finds, with a few more scarce examples including Aemilianus, Marcus Aurelius Marius and Regalianus. The situation was not unlike the hyperinflation of the Weimar Republic in 1920s Germany, the coin ceased to be used by the end of the 3rd century when a series of coinage reforms attempted to arrest the decline by issuing new types. Modern numismatists use this name for the coin because it is not known what it was called in antiquity, an ancient Roman document called the Historia Augusta refers to silver coins named after an Antoninus on several occasions
In the Roman currency system, the dēnārius, plural, dēnāriī was a small silver coin first minted about 211 BC during the Second Punic War. It is the origin of modern words such as the currency name dinar, it is the origin for the common noun for money in Italian denaro, in Portuguese dinheiro. Its symbol is X̶, a x with stroke. A predecessor of the denarius was first struck in 267 BC, five years before the first Punic War with a weight of 6.81 grams. Contact with the Greeks prompted a need for coinage in addition to the bronze currency that the Romans were using during that time. The predecessor of the denarius was a Greek-styled silver coin, very similar to the didrachm and drachma struck in Metapontion and these coins were inscribed for Rome but closely resemble their Greek counterparts. They were most likely used for purposes and were seldom used in Rome. The first distinctively Roman silver coin appeared around 226 BC, Rome overhauled its coinage around 211 BC and introduced the denarius alongside a short-lived denomination called the victoriatus.
This denarius contained an average 4.5 grams, or 1⁄72 of a Roman pound of silver and it formed the backbone of Roman currency throughout the Roman republic. The denarius began to undergo slow debasement toward the end of the republican period, under the rule of Augustus, its silver content fell to 3.9 grams. It remained at nearly this weight until the time of Nero, debasement of the coins silver content continued after Nero. Later Roman emperors reduced its content to 3 grams around the third century. The value at its introduction was 10 asses, giving the denarius its name, in about 141 BC, it was re-tariffed at 16 asses, to reflect the decrease in weight of the as. The denarius continued to be the coin of the Roman Empire until it was replaced by the antoninianus in the middle of the third century. The last issuance of this occurred in bronze form by Aurelian. For more details, see Denarius, in A Dictionary of Ancient Roman Coins, the denarius has a link from the Roman times to the British penny and US1 cent piece.
It is difficult to give even rough comparative values for money from before the 20th century, as the range of products and services available for purchase was different. Classical historians often say that in the late Roman Republic and early Roman Empire the daily wage for an unskilled laborer and common soldier was 1 denarius or about US$2. 8$ in bread
Constans or Constans I was Roman Emperor from 337 to 350. Constans was the third and youngest son of Constantine the Great and Fausta and he was educated at the court of his father at Constantinople under the tutelage of the poet Aemilius Magnus Arborius. On 25 December 333, Constantine I elevated Constans to the rank of Caesar at Constantinople, Constans became engaged to Olympias, the daughter of the Praetorian Prefect Ablabius, but the marriage never came to pass. The army proclaimed them Augusti on September 9,337, almost immediately, Constans was required to deal with a Sarmatian invasion in late 337, over whom he won a resounding victory. Constans was initially under the guardianship of Constantine II, the original settlement assigned Constans the praetorian prefectures of Italy and Africa. Constans was unhappy with this division, so the brothers met at Viminacium in 338 to revise the boundaries, Constantine II soon complained that he had not received the amount of territory that was his due as the eldest son.
Soon, they began quarreling over which parts of the African provinces belonged to Carthage, and thus Constantine, and which belonged to Italy, and therefore Constans. This led to growing tensions between the two brothers, which were heightened by Constans finally coming of age and Constantine refusing to give up his guardianship. In 340 Constantine II invaded Italy, Constans, at that time in Dacia and sent a select and disciplined body of his Illyrian troops, stating that he would follow them in person with the remainder of his forces. Constantine was eventually trapped at Aquileia, where he died, leaving Constans to inherit all of his brother’s former territories – Hispania, Constans began his reign in an energetic fashion. In 341-42, he led a campaign against the Franks. Regarding religion, Constans was tolerant of Judaism and promulgated an edict banning pagan sacrifices in 341 and he suppressed Donatism in Africa and supported Nicene orthodoxy against Arianism, which was championed by his brother Constantius.
Although Constans called the Council of Sardica in 343 to settle the conflict, it was a complete failure, the conflict was only resolved by an interim agreement which allowed each emperor to support their preferred clergy within their own spheres of influence. Nevertheless, Constans did sponsor a decree alongside Constantius II that ruled that based on unnatural sex should be punished meticulously. However, Boswell believed the decree outlawed homosexual marriages only and it may be that Constans was not expressing his own feeling when promulgating the legislation but was rather trying to placate public outrage at his own perceived indecencies. In the final years of his reign, Constans developed a reputation for cruelty, dominated by favourites and openly preferring his select bodyguard, he lost the support of the legions. In 350, the general Magnentius declared himself emperor at Augustodunum with the support of the troops on the Rhine frontier and, Constans was enjoying himself nearby when he was notified of the elevation of Magnentius.
Lacking any support beyond his immediate household, he was forced to flee for his life, a prophecy at his birth had said Constans would die in the arms of his grandmother
The follis was a type of coin in the Roman and Byzantine traditions. The Roman follis was a bronze coin introduced in about 294 with the coinage reform of Diocletian. It weighed about 10 grams and was about 4% silver, mostly as a layer on the surface. The word follis means bag in Latin, and there is evidence that this term was used in antiquity for a bag containing a specific amount of coins. The follis of Diocletian, despite efforts to enforce prices with the Edict on Maximum Prices, was revalued and reduced, by the time of Constantine, the follis was smaller and barely contained any silver. A series of Constantinian bronzes was introduced in the century, although the specific denominations are unclear and debated by historians. They are referred to as AE1, AE2, AE3 and AE4, with the former being the largest, Fourth century folles represent the largest category of coin finds in the United Kingdom. The follis was reintroduced as a bronze coin in 498, with the coinage reform of Anastasius. A40 nummi coin of Anastasius is depicted on the obverse of the Macedonian 50 denars banknote, the fals was a bronze coin issued by the Umayyad and Abbasid caliphates beginning in the late 8th century, initially as imitations of the Byzantine follis.
Trifollaro, a coin worth 3 folles Grierson, Byzantine coinage, Dumbarton Oaks, ISBN 978-0-88402-274-9, archived from the original on 13 June 2010 Hendy