Roman Imperial coin, (base silver or bronze) Billon antoninianus. Struck during the sole reign of Publius Licinius Egnatius Gallienus Augustus in Rome, 267-268 C.E. The radiate head of Gallienus faces right in profile, on obverse with the inscriptions "GALLIENVS AVG" surrounding image. On reverse, an antelope, one of the many animals associated with the goddess Diana, faces left with the inscriptions "DIANAE CONS AVG" surrounding image and "XII" in the exergum. Coins with AVG on reverse are 260-268 C.E. Coin is irregularly shaped with a section missing at the top rendering the inscriptions difficult to decipher.
Date range: 267-268 C.E.
Remarks: The son of Valerian, Gallienus was made co-emperor soon after his father's elevation. After the capture of Valerian by the Persians, Gallienus found himself sole ruler of an empire subject not only to fierce barbarian attacks from without, but rent by internal revolts, famine, and plagues, and the history of his reign is largely made up of frontier wars and contests with provincial usurpers. His reign also marked the further debasement of the antoninianus which, already reduced to a bronze coin with a silver wash before the end of the joint reign, continued to decline in size and weight during his sole reign. Gallienus was not the man to reconstitute an empire showing every sign of disintegration, and after a succession of campaigns he was eventually murdered at the siege of Milan in March, 268 C.E., being in his fiftieth year. The future emperors Claudius and Aurelian were both involved in the conspiracy of Illyrian officers which led to the assassination. Gallienus' sole reign coins were minted in Rome, Milan, Siscia, and possibly Cyzicus and Antioch.
Reference: David Sear, "Roman Coins and Their Values", (Vol III, 2005), #10200/10201, pg 289.
|Credit line||Gift of Arthur G. and Roswitha Haas|
|Place of Origin||Europe/Italy/Rome|