Milvian Bridge

Discussion in 'Ancient Coins' started by Gary Waddingham, Mar 26, 2020 at 12:07 AM.

  1. Gary Waddingham

    Gary Waddingham Well-Known Member

    This coin (struck between 330 and 354) shows us the genius of the Roman People (hence Pop Romanvs) and (we think) the Milvian Bridge, perhaps the most famous bridge in history. Most associate it with Constantine the Great's Christian vision but that actually took place elsewhere. What he saw has been debated but according to Eusebius who actually talked to Constantine it was a cross with the Greek inscription "Εν Τούτῳ Νίκα" which in Latin is the more familiar "in hoc signo vinces" or "in this sign conquer." One might explain the cross as a sun dog but the Greek lettering is much tricker. At any rate, the bridge is where the co-emperor Maxentius whom Constantine was fighting, and his forces were defeated mostly by drowning. His body was fished out of the Tiber, beheaded and paraded throughout the city. Thus the bridge is a marker of Constantine's victory rather than his conversion (if the vision can indeed be called that) but said victory was ascribed to the intercession of Christ. 2wAGnT9B3kQP87WedM76Wq4Qp8Cg5o.jpg
     
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  3. Ancient Aussie

    Ancient Aussie Supporter! Supporter

    Fantastic coin Gary, with huge historical interest.
     
  4. dougsmit

    dougsmit Member Supporter

    I have always found it interesting that the mint under Constantius II/Vetranio used 'victor eris' rather than 'vinces'. That is simply 'You shall be the victor' which means the same thing. Where is the first use of this Latin phrase using 'vinces'?

    Neither of my Constantius II Siscia examples are terribly clear.
    rx6440bb1086.jpg rx6450bb0943.jpg

    The Constantius Gallus of Sirmium is a bit better.
    rx7240bb1539.jpg

    The Vetranio was nice but was returned as a fake. Since then, I have been hesitant to buy another.
    rx7170fake1265.jpg
     
    gogili1977, Andres2, galba68 and 4 others like this.
  5. Bing

    Bing Illegitimi non carborundum Supporter

  6. Valentinian

    Valentinian Supporter! Supporter

    There are two reverses that go with that obverse:

    POPROMANVSbridge8313.jpg
    This one is the bridge reverse discussed above.
    14-13 mm. 1.08 grams.
    RIC VIII Constantinople 21

    Its companion is the star in wreath reverse.

    POPROMANVSstar8880.jpg

    14 mm.
    RIC VIII Constantinople 22 "struck 330"
    "Special issue for the dedication of the city, A.D. 330" p. 448.

    RIC lists them as very common, but that is misleading. There are each from only this one issue from this one mint, so compared to many other types that were produced in several issues, each at many mints, these are not so common.

    For more about "The founding of Constantinople and its commemorative coins", see: http://augustuscoins.com/ed/CON/Founding.html
     
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