Maximian's name, revised

Discussion in 'Ancient Coins' started by Valentinian, Feb 23, 2021.

  1. Valentinian

    Valentinian Supporter! Supporter

    Last month I posted a thread
    on the full name of Maximian (Roman emperor 286-305 and again 306-308). The motivation was a coin with the longest version of his name on coins. I have expanded it with numerous additional coins, including this one which arrived today:


    The obverse legend reads
    which is a legend used by Maximian, but also later used by Galerius. The seller attributed it to Maximian, but it is really of Galerius. How can we know?

    This is clear from both the portrait (which does not have the distinctive nose of Maximian) and the co-rulers in the same issue.
    Genius with loins draped.
    S F in fields
    PTR in exergue
    RIC VI Trier 652b. "1 May 305 - early 307".

    This group in RIC VI is shared by Galerius as Augustus with Constantius as Augustus, Constantine as Caesar, Maximinus II as Caesar, and, retirement issues of Diocletian and Maximian (who had a different legend illustrated on the page). This group is after Maximian retired and his coins had retirement legends, not the legend above. Also, the earlier GENIO POPVLI ROMANI types had Genius naked, but this one has "loins draped" which was introduced under Constantius as Augustus, that is, after Maximian retired and Galerius was promoted to Augustus. The full name of Galerius included "MAXIMIANVS" so they are easy to confuse on coins, especially when Galerius is Augustus.

    Actually, the time period of the "Second Tetrarchy" when Constantius was Augustus is pretty complicated. My page gives the story of why Galerius used the exact same legend used earlier for Maximian and what Constantine did about it when Maximian began his "second reign."

    Here is the webpage again:
    I think it is much better than the earlier version. Take a look if you like late Roman coins.

    Show us your coins of Galerius and Maximian!
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  3. Roman Collector

    Roman Collector Supporter! Supporter

    Informative post, @Valentinian, as always.

    Here are a couple of similar coins from the Trier mint, though not the same issue.

    Galerius as Caesar, AD 293-305.
    Roman silvered billon follis, 8.62 g, 27.2 mm, 6 h.
    Trier, AD 302-3.
    Obv: MAXIMIANVS NOBIL C, laureate and cuirassed bust, right.
    Rev: GENIO POPV-LI ROMANI, Genius standing facing, head left, wearing modius, naked but for chlamys over left shoulder, holding patera and cornucopiae; S/F//IITR.
    Refs: RIC vi, p. 196, 508b; Cohen 65; RCV 14348.
    Notes: Some numismatists postulate that the S F in the fields of these coins from Trier is an abbreviation for SAECVLI FELICITAS.

    Maximian, 1st Reign, AD 286-305.
    Roman billon follis, 10.96 g, 27.2 mm, 12 h.
    Trier, AD 298-99.
    Obv: IMP MAXIMIANVS P F AVG, laureate head, right.
    Rev: GENIO POP-VLI ROMANI, Genius, wearing modius, nude but for chlamys draped over left shoulder, standing left, holding patera in right hand and cornucopiae in left hand; A/*//TR.
    Refs: RIC vi, p. 186, 277b.
    Notes: Typically, the reverse legend is broken GENIO POPV-LI ROMANI.
  4. Severus Alexander

    Severus Alexander Blame my mother. Supporter

    Here's an early (297) loins draped of Maximian from the London mint, the only one Hugh Cloke is aware of:

    max lon follis.jpg

    Apparently they were still experimenting with the design at this point, and quickly settled on a nude genius. So while it's true that draped loins generally come later, there are rare exceptions!
  5. DonnaML

    DonnaML Supporter! Supporter

    Recently, I've seen several people post Maximian's coins here with his name given as "Maximian Herculius," a name I'm not familiar with. Is it common to use "Herculius" as part of his name?
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  6. John Conduitt

    John Conduitt Well-Known Member

    This one is also an early Maximian from London, minted by Carausius (who much preferred Pax).

    Maximian I Antoninianus, 286-293
    London. Bronze, 22mm, 4.29g. IMP C MAXIMIANVS PF AVG. PAX AVGGG (for the 3 emperors, including Diocletian and Carausius), S-P, mintmark MLXXI (RIC V 34).

    Yes I believe Herculius was his nickname. Perhaps it helps distinguish him from Galerius and Maximinus II/Maximinus Daia (Daza).
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2021
  7. zumbly

    zumbly Ha'ina 'ia mai ana ka puana Supporter

    Thank you for the excellent page, @Valentinian. Here's a second reign London issue, with the MAXIMIANO P F S legend, same as your Coin 5.

    Maximianus - 2nd Reign London Genius 2550.jpg MAXIMIANUS
    AE Follis. 6.23g, 26mm. London (Londinium) mint, AD 307. Maximianus, as Senior Augustus (Second Reign). RIC VI London 90. O: D N MAXIMIANO P F S AVG, laureate and cuirassed bust right. R: GENIO POP ROM, Genius standing left, holding patera in right hand, cornucopia in left; PLN in exergue.
    Ex John "@Eng" Enges Collection

    An abdication issue from Aquileia, naming him BAEATISSIMO, "most blessed":

    Maximianus - Prov Quies.jpg MAXIMIANUS
    AE Follis. 10.17g, 29.6mm. Abdication Issue. Aquileia mint, AD 305-306. RIC VI Aquileia 63b. O: D N MAXIMIANO BAEATISSIMO SEN AVG, laureate bust right, wearing imperial mantle, holding olive branch and mappa. R: PROVIDENTIA DEORVM QVIES AVGG, Providentia standing right, receiving olive branch from Quies standing left, holding scepter; S - F in fields, AQS in exergue.

    And an abdication half-follis from Alexandria, with a shorter form obverse legend:

    Maximianus - AE Half Follis Alexandria ex Peck 3941.jpg MAXIMIANUS
    AE Half-Follis. 2.46g, 20.8mm. Alexandria mint, circa earlier to mid AD 308. RIC VI Alexandria 91b (S). O: D N MAXIMIANO FELICISS, laureate and mantled bust right, holding branch and mappa. R: PROVIDENTIA DEORVM, Providentia standing right, Quies standing left, holding scepter and extending branch (?).
    Ex Phil Peck Collection
  8. philologus_1

    philologus_1 Supporter! Supporter

    Perhaps related: I have a Maximian coin with Hercules (HERCVLI PACIFERO) on the reverse. It looks like either Hercules used the coin to clean his fingernails, hence shredding the flan, or, the flan just experienced a small explosion upon impact of the hammer due to the great abundance of letters crowded around each die. ;-)
  9. Valentinian

    Valentinian Supporter! Supporter

    Yes. RIC does in order to be clear he is not Galerius, who had a similar name. Diocletian's favored deity was Jove and Maximian's was Hercules. We don't need to append "Jovean" to "Diocletian" because there is no one else with a similar name. We append something to "MAXIMIANVS" because, as the first coin shows, that name alone does not determine which emperor it is.

    Here is a page on distinguishing coins of Maximian from those of Galerius:
  10. ominus1

    ominus1 Well-Known Member

    ...i had this coin laying around for years and thought it was Galerius..i dang near give it away several times... still lQQking fo/atr Constantius Chlorus to complete the tetarchy coinage :) Maxuminus AVG 001.JPG Maxuminus AVG 006.JPG
  11. Curtis

    Curtis Supporter! Supporter

    The Maximian, Galerius, Maximianus legends always make me a bit nervous, so I find myself trying to double and triple-check them before sharing. It's helpful to see new examples like this to know what things to pay attention to and keep an eye out for.

    (Hopefully I've got the RIC #s right below, but this is admittedly less familiar territory to me.)

    Maximianus Herculius: Looking through my "big green folles" I could only find a single Maximianus (Thessalonica, RIC 23b, not very attractive, unfortunately. This one has the IMP C MA MAXIMIANVS PF AVG legend:
    MAximianus Thessalonica RIC 23b.png

    Maximianus Herculius: I believe these three Alexandrian Potin Tetradrachms are from Maximianus, though these ones can be even more challenging than the Imperial AE, especially in worn condition like this (just in case things weren't complicated enough, I recently picked up a couple Egypt, Alexandrian Tets of Maximus and Maximinus I; not pictured):

    : The only one of my folles of this style that I'm attached to would be this SACRA MONET AVGG ET CAESS NOSTR from Aqulieia (RIC 36b). MAXIMIANVS NOB CAES obverse legend:
    Galerius SACRA MONET Moneta RIC 36b.png

    The long legends are fascinating! I don't have any of the very long legends from this period, though I do have a Galerius GAL VAL MAXIMIANVS NOB CAES (Heraclea mint, RIC 20b, I believe)
    Galerius Heraclea RIC 20b.png

    Lastly, here's a Galerius GAL MAXIMIANVS PF AVG with a GENIO IMPERATORI reverse type from Cyzicus (RIC 44):
    Galerius Follis GENIO IMP Cyzicus RIC 44.png
  12. Al Kowsky

    Al Kowsky Well-Known Member

    The 2 folles pictured below show how easy it is to confuse the coins of Maximiam & Galerius. Both were struck at the Ticinum Mint & both have identical obverse inscriptions. As has been pointed out, Maximian does have an upturned nose. Both coins are in my collection :D.

    Maximian, Circa AD 294-295.jpg
    Maximian Herculius, AD 286-310, Ticinum Mint (struck c. AD 294-295). AE follis: 27 mm, 10.53 gm, 6 h. RIC 23b. Ex Freeman & Sear, June 21, 2007.

    CNG 477, Lot 617.jpg

    Galerius as Augustus, AD 305-311, Ticinum Mint, 1st Officina, (struck c. AD 305). AE follis: 29 mm, 11.54 gm, 6 h. RIC VI 55b. Ex CNG September 23, 2020.

  13. dougsmit

    dougsmit Member Supporter

    Most people here seem to favor the post-reform folles of Maximianus but the association with Hercules dates back to his pre-reform antoniniani (my preferences are usually different than most). In those times, the common types for Maximianus showed Hercules, often accompanied my Jupiter, the representative of Diocletian. Both men were 'Augusti' but, like his god, Diocletian was a bit more 'August'.
    ru3507fd2438.jpg ru3550bb1519.jpg ru3610bb2064.jpg
  14. Alegandron

    Alegandron "ΤΩΙ ΚΡΑΤΙΣΤΩΙ..." ΜΕΓΑΣ ΑΛΕΞΑΝΔΡΟΣ, June 323 BCE Supporter

    I just have one of this guy:

    RI MAXIMIANUS HERCULIUS 286-305 CE antoninianus Antioch 292-295 CE Pre-Reform CONCORDIA MILITVM Jupiter RIC V 621 H-officina 8
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  15. Andres2

    Andres2 Well-Known Member

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