Constantius I As Augustus AE Radiate - One & Done

Discussion in 'Ancient Coins' started by Finn235, Aug 31, 2021.

  1. Finn235

    Finn235 Well-Known Member

    Fun lot find just came in the mail -

    Constantius Chlorus Augustus radiate alexandria.jpg

    Constantius I Chlorus, as Augustus (305-306)
    AE Radiate fraction
    Alexandria mint
    IMP C CONSTANTIVS P F AVG, Radiate draped bust right
    CONCORDIA MILITVM / Δ / ALE, Emperor receives Victory from Jupiter
    RIC VI 59a

    Besides being a mighty handsome coin, this coin carries an unusual distinction - it seems to be the only issue of the radiate fraction from any mint while Constantius was Augustus!

    Any more out there? Let's see em!
  2. Avatar

    Guest User Guest

    to hide this ad.
  3. hotwheelsearl

    hotwheelsearl Well-Known Member

    I just got this one Constantius 1 radiate from Carthage.
    Constantius I RIC VI Carthage 35a.JPG
    I like this one due to the massive flan size.
    galba68, ominus1, Curtisimo and 10 others like this.
  4. ancient coin hunter

    ancient coin hunter 3rd Century Usurper

    Nice examples. I guess they call these coins post-reform radiates. So they are not antoniniani. Any idea of how it was tariffed against the follis?
    Finn235 and galba68 like this.
  5. Heliodromus

    Heliodromus Well-Known Member

    The best argued numbers for coin values following Diocletian's edict on maximum prices are:

    nummus - 25 DC
    post-reform radiate - 4 DC
    post-reform laureate - 2 DC

    Where DC = denarii communes.

    These numbers partly come from the bullion values of bronze and silver (the nummus was 5% silver), and partly from recurring multiples of "4" in Diocletian's price edict.

    There have been many articles discussing Diocletian's coin tarriffs. The most recent that I'm aware of, where these numbers come from, is:

    "The Value of Money: Coinage and Diocletian’s Price Edict" by Howard Posner.
  6. ancient coin hunter

    ancient coin hunter 3rd Century Usurper

  7. Marsyas Mike

    Marsyas Mike Well-Known Member

    Nice acquisition, @Finn235 These LRB denominations confuse me - can you provide more information on the "fraction" part of your description? I thought these were just "post-reform radiates."

    I ask this because, if my attribution is right, I have an example of the OP (RIC 59a). I called it a "post-reform radiate" because of online research, not because I know anything. :bucktooth:

    Mine is extra special because it is covered in green warts :oops::

    Constantius Chlorus as Aug Aug 2018 (0aa).jpg
    Constantius I Chlorus as Aug.
    (struck by Maximinus Daia)
    Æ Post-Reform Radiate
    (305-306 A.D.)
    Alexandria Mint

    IMP C CONSTANTIVS P F AVG, Radiate, draped & cuir. bust rt. / CONCORDIA MIL-ITVM, Constantius r. receiving Victory from Jupiter l., Δ /ALE.
    RIC VI Alexandria 59a.
    (3.68 grams / 20 mm)
    eBay July 2018

    This one's so ugly I've never posted it before, but here it is:
    Constantius Chlorus - AE IOVI & HERC NC lot July 2020 (0).jpg
    Constantius I Chlorus Anton.
    (284-294 A.D.) (by Diocletian)
    Antioch Mint

    [FL VA]L CONSTANTIVS NOB C, radiate draped & cuir. bust r. / IOVI ET HERCVLI CONS CAES, Jupiter standing r. facing Hercules standing left, A in field, XXII in exergue.
    RIC V 674 (Diocletian).
    (4.03 grams / 21 mm)
    eBay July 2020

    A big follis (Caesar):
    Constantius Chlorus from Lot Mar 2019 (0).jpg
    Constantius I Chlorus as Caes.
    (struck by Maximian) Follis
    (301 A.D.) Aquileia

    NOSTR, Moneta standing left, holding scales and cornucopiae, V in right field, mintmark AQΓ.
    RIC VI Aquileia 32a.
    (8.70 grams / 26 mm)
    eBay Mar. 2019

    My newest one, very green (Caesar):
    Constantius Chlorus - Sisca follis GENIO Aug 2021 (0).jpg
    Constantius I Chlorus Æ Follis
    (struck by Maximian)
    (294 A.D.)
    Siscia Mint

    Genius standing left, holding patera and cornucopiae, S in left field, Γ in right field
    RIC VI Siscia 81a.
    (8.53 grams / 26 x 25 mm)
    eBay Aug. 2021

    And that's all my Constantius I Chlorus!
  8. Heliodromus

    Heliodromus Well-Known Member

    They're called post-reform radiates to differentiate them from the pre-reform ones, i.e. pre/post Diocletian's coinage reform of c.293AD when the nummus was introduced. The pre-reform radiates contained 5% silver, as indicated by their XXI (XX:I = 20:1 parts bronze vs silver) marking, as opposed to the post-reform ones which have close to zero silver content and now instead carry a mintmark indicating the mint/city.

    The "radiate" part of the name comes from the radiate busts, and is significant because radiate busts were used as a denomination marker, typically "double value", so here we have the post-reform radiate at double the value of the post-reform laureate.

    Collectors normally call these post-reform radiates since it's more descriptive than just "fractions", and they're really a carry-over from the pre-reform coinage, not directly intended as a clean fraction (1/2 etc) of a nummus. As typical we don't know what the Roman's themselves usually called these denominations, although there is a contemporary reference to the "bicharactar pecuniam" (i.e. "two-person coin") which appears to be a nickname for the concordia militvm type (pre and/or post-reform?) with it's two-person design.
  9. Bing

    Bing Illegitimi non carborundum Supporter

    Constantius I 2.jpg
    AE Follis
    OBVERSE: CONSTANTIVS NOB CAES, Laurate bust, right
    REVERSE: SAC MON VRB AVGG ET CAESS NN, Moneta standing left, holding scales and cornucopiae. Star in right field. Mintmark RT
    Struck at Rome 302-303 AD
    8.8g, 27mm
    RIC VI 106a
  10. Marsyas Mike

    Marsyas Mike Well-Known Member

    Thank you! That is a most helpful reply. :)
    galba68 likes this.
  11. Valentinian

    Valentinian Supporter! Supporter

    @Finn235 , your coin is a beauty. Here is one from that issue from the Second Tetrarchy, but for Galerius as Augustus:


    Don't let the obverse legend fool you.
    looks like it should belong to Maximian, but the emperor we call Galerius had the name
    Galerius Maximianvs
    and used "MAXIMIANVS" in his legends, too.

    Galerius as Augustus (Second Tetrarchy)
    22 mm. 2.75 grams.
    RIC VI Alexandria 59b "305-306"
    Sear IV 14531

    I have a web page on the "post-reform radiate" denomination:

    as part of my group of pages on coins of the tetrarchies:
  12. ominus1

    ominus1 Be seeing you!.. Supporter latest & greatest (and only) of the man :) IMG_0553.JPG IMG_0555.JPG
  13. hotwheelsearl

    hotwheelsearl Well-Known Member

    Something I've also noticed is that pre-reform radiates tend to have portraits with skinnier necks, while post-reforms have those fat meatheads.
    ancient coin hunter likes this.
  14. ominus1

    ominus1 Be seeing you!.. Supporter

    ..while watching a utube vid from our friend @Classical Numismatics, he said that the post reform portraits of all emperors & caesars were all made to look as the same person(not an 'exac't explanation of the fat neck, but..), for all to regard them as equals in their positions...:)
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2021
  15. ancient coin hunter

    ancient coin hunter 3rd Century Usurper

    The changing artistic style of the tetrarchy, in a statue looted from Constantinople during the 4th Crusade.

  16. Valentinian

    Valentinian Supporter! Supporter

    This is generally regarded as true, but it does not mean that an experienced collector can't tell them apart by portrait alone. The tetarchal "style" is new to the Romans and the coins, but they still have some individual features (e.g. in the east, Constantius is portrayed with curls in his beard. Maximian has an upturned nose.)

    Portraits also depend upon the mint. Nicomedia has the largest "bull neck" portraits. If you would like to compare portraits of the four rulers of the first tetrarchy, here is a site to do just that on folles a.k.a. nummi):


    Constantius as Caesar
    27-24 mm. 11.42 grams.
    Note the curls in his beard. Curls only appear on coins of eastern mints.
    S in left field A over P in right field
    ALE in exergue
    RIC Alexandria 35a "c. 302-303"
  17. Heliodromus

    Heliodromus Well-Known Member

    Yes, this may have been part of Diocletian's plan for the tetrarchy, but the tetrarchy barely survived Diocletian's retirement in 305 AD.

    By 307 AD we've already got usurpers Constantine, Maxentius and Maximianus, tetrarch Severus II dead at their hands, and Galerius defeated by Maxentius.

    By 308 AD Galerius's attempt to regroup at Carnuntum is basically laughed at by all concerned:

    -- Daia immediately starts recognizing newly-denounced Maximianus
    -- Constantine and Daia each ignore their new "FIL AVG" status
    -- Maximianus tries to usurp usurper Constantine
    -- Domitius Alexander succeeds in usurping usurper Maxentius
    -- Galerius's appointed saviour of the western empire, Licinius, just stays home

    Tetrarchy R.I.P.

    At this point it is every man for himself, and to hell with cookie-cutter portraits!
  18. robp

    robp Well-Known Member

    Apologies if most things I post are London, but my Roman are restricted to coins struck in Britain - one example per depicted person from Carausius to a realistic end-point of Constantius II, together with an example of any denomination that would have circulated. So, my Constantius I, struck at London without mint signature c.303-5. A cracking nose on this one, and the ubiquitous GPR reverse.
  19. hotwheelsearl

    hotwheelsearl Well-Known Member

    Constantius I RIC 59a Ticinium.JPG
    Love that Nervine nose!
  20. IMP Shogun

    IMP Shogun Well-Known Member

    I like this thread, here are my tetrarchy brothers from different mothers:
    Constantius I Caesar 293-305 A.D. fractional radiate RIC 40b (RIC 41?) Ticinum
    Draped and cuirassed bust right
    VOT X T within wreath

    Galerius as Caesar 295–296 A.D. fractional radiate RIC VI 16 Heraclea
    Radiate, draped and cuirassed bust right
    Galerius standing right in military dress receiving Victory on globe from Jupiter leaning on scepter Mintmark H Delta
  21. Clavdivs

    Clavdivs Supporter! Supporter

    Now that is a post I can get behind!!! Chaos !!
Draft saved Draft deleted

Share This Page