Roman Nummi (folli) of the Late 3rd - Early 4th Century

Discussion in 'Ancient Coins' started by Al Kowsky, Aug 13, 2018.

  1. Al Kowsky

    Al Kowsky Well-Known Member

    Diocletion's currency reform of AD 293-305 created new denominations in gold, silver & billon. The least expensive of these coins is the billon nummus which had an average weight of 10.5 grams, a diameter about 28 mm, & a silver surface of 4-5 %. The minting process of these nummi was a vast improvement from the coins of the previous three decades. A new artistic style evolved with these new denominations that originated from the Roman East. The portrait style lost it's individuality & became very stylizied. The emperors depicted on these coins all looked alike; stern, heroic, & almost god-like. Styles did vary from mint to mint & interesting collections can be made by sampling examples from different mints. Attached are a few examples from my collection.
    The 1st coin below is a very realistic portrait of Maximian struck in London. The 2nd coin is Constantius I also struck in London. The 3rd coin is Constantius I in a heroic pose holding a spear & shield struck in Lyon. The 4th coin depicts Diocletian in heroic pose with a scepter over his shoulder, also struck in Lyon. The 5th coin depicts Constantine the Great struck in Trier. The 6th coin is a very rare depiction of Diocletian in heroic pose wearing a helmet & holding a spear & shield, it's also struck in Trier. The 7th coin is Diocletian, struck in Aquileia. The last coin is Maximian, struck in Ticinum.
    _london_RIC_025, F & S, $632, 2007.jpg _london_RIC_022, F & S, $402, 2007.jpg _lyons_RIC_170a, F & S, $483, 2007.jpg _lyons_RIC_115a, F & S, $391, 2007.jpg Constantine I, 27 mm, 9.50 gm, AD 306-7, RARE.jpg r7246b_lrg.jpg
    r7433b_lrg.jpg _ticinum_RIC_023b, F & S, $230, 2007.jpg
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  3. ancient coin hunter

    ancient coin hunter 3rd Century Usurper

    Some great coins there Al. The helmeted Diocletian is really special.
  4. Ancient Aussie

    Ancient Aussie Well-Known Member

    Welcome to CT Al Kowsky, fantastic pics all with great portraits congrats on a beautiful collection.
  5. Andres2

    Andres2 Well-Known Member

    Wellcome Al Kowsky , beautifull sharp coins with silverwash still present.

    Here's a missing link, Galerius (as Caesar)

    P1180760 Galerius.JPG
  6. ominus1

    ominus1 Well-Known Member

    nice LRB's, welcome to here :)
  7. dougsmit

    dougsmit Member

    Good post. I'll question the statement that the full AE1 follis is the least expensive coin but the big ones are definitely the ones to buy. I'm sorry you chose not to show the reverses here. Yes, many of them are too much the same but there are a few 'better' ones.

    I'll add a Maximinus II follis of Rome with Moneta reverse.
    ....and a follis of Diocletian from Alexandria showing the XXI alloy mark that only was used of a few of the post reform folles. All the folles were silvered but relatively feww retain much now.

    The fractions like this post reform radiate (2/5 follis) of Maximianus from Cyzicus were not silvered.

    The 1/5 laureate follis fractions are less common and also not silvered. This is a Divus Constantius I of Rome.
  8. Caesar_Augustus

    Caesar_Augustus Well-Known Member

    I am very fond of these nummi. It's not so much the coins themselves, but the historical context of the recovery of the Empire that hits me really hard when I look at one of these coins. Lovely coins, by the way. Beautiful style on all of them, and they are all sharp. :)

    Here are my Diocletian and Maximian nummi from Antioch. I still need a Constantius and a Galerius to complete the set. :)

  9. Nicholas Molinari

    Nicholas Molinari Well-Known Member

    My only one, which I like. I’d like also to get a large lot of these someday.

    DIOCLETIAN. 286-305 AD. Æ Follis. Aquileia mint, 2nd officina. Struck 296 AD. IMP DIOCLETIANVS P F AVG, laureate head right / GENIO POPV-LI ROMANI, Genius standing left, holding patera and cornucopiae; AQS. RIC VI 23a. near EF, Some silvering remaining.

  10. Al Kowsky

    Al Kowsky Well-Known Member

    Your Galerius nummus is a handsome coin, well struck from fresh dies. In the future I'll post some of my Galerius nummi.
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  11. Al Kowsky

    Al Kowsky Well-Known Member

    In the future I'll post samples with photos of the reverse. This was my 1st post for Coin Talk & I had difficulty putting things together, but I'm happy getting positive responses anyway.
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  12. Ryro

    Ryro Trying to remove supporter status

    WoWiE! Those are some beautiful LRBs!! Thank you so much for sharing:woot:
  13. Al Kowsky

    Al Kowsky Well-Known Member

    The Maximian nummus looks sharp & both look very Asian in style. Antioch is a city with an amazing history & it's mint was the longest functioning mint in history, about 1,000 years. Some time in the future I'll post some of the Antioch coins I have left.
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  14. ancient coin hunter

    ancient coin hunter 3rd Century Usurper

    The change in portraiture introduced by Diocletian was amazing, along with the sculptures of the time. A complete sea-change from the "realistic" portraiture of earlier wonders who was in charge of the "re-branding" of the imperium to the dominate, so I'm showing this statue which is a favorite of mine...Diocletian, Maximianus, Galerius, and Constantius, each with his hand on the pommel of his sword, and with a furrowed brow, serious look...

  15. Al Kowsky

    Al Kowsky Well-Known Member

    I love this porphyry statue! Some day I'd like to travel to Venice to see it in person. Historians believe it was looted from Constantinople in 1204. I'm glad they got it before the Turks did....
  16. chrsmat71

    chrsmat71 I LIKE TURTLES!

    Those are some great looking coins Al!

    I have a Galerius...


    Galerius as caesar, 293 – 305 AD, Æ Follis

    GAL VAL MAXIMIANVS NOB CAES Laureate head r. Rev. GENIO POPV – LI ROMANI Genius standing l., with modius on head and naked but for chlamys , holding patera and cornucopiae; S in r. field, D in l. field, ANT In exergue, Antioch, 28 mm, 9.9g, RIC 53b.

    I thought I had another nice Galerius out of a lot of mixed coins a few months back, but it turned out to be a fake...of a fake. Here is my cast fake of a modern reproduction. My coin on top, reproduction it was cast from below.

  17. randygeki

    randygeki Coin Collector

  18. Roman Collector

    Roman Collector Well-Known Member

    If you'll permit me to stretch out the time window a bit, here's a Galerius as Augustus, a Galeria Valeria, a Maximinus II Daia, and a Maxentius:

    Galerius GENIO IMPERATORIS follis, Heraclea.jpg
    Heraclea mint, RIC 48a

    Galeria Valeria VENERI VICTRICI follis Nicomedia.jpg
    Nicomedia mint, RIC 57

    Maximinus II Daia GENIO AVGVSTI follis.jpg
    Antioch mint, RIC 164b

    Maxentius CONSERV VRB SVAE follis.jpg
    Rome mint, RIC 202a
  19. Jay GT4

    Jay GT4 Well-Known Member

    I also like these big late coins. They didn't last too long did they? Here are a few of mine

    Laureate head right

    Genius standing left holding patera and Cornucopiae SF in fields PTR in ex.

    Trier 294 AD


    29 mm

    RIC 582


    laureate head right

    R wreath S in ex.
    Moneta standing left with scales and cornucopiae

    30 mm
    Rome 306 AD
    Rome RIC VI 132b
    See notes below

    This is the Wildwinds example!

    Notes: RIC lists these types as being produced in two periods,
    the second period (coins are identical in all respects) being struck in Autumn 306, and also listed as RIC 158a and
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2018
  20. Al Kowsky

    Al Kowsky Well-Known Member

    The lower coin is a sight to behold! You would search a log time to find an equal. The two coins look like they came from the same set of dies despite the difference in condition. I wonder if the original was made by Slavey Petrov, (the Bulgarian)?
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2018
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  21. maridvnvm

    maridvnvm Well-Known Member

    May I play too....?

    Maximianus Herculius Follis

    Obv:– IMP C M AVR VAL MAXIMIANVS P F AVG, Laureate, draped and cuirassed bust right
    Rev:– GENIO IMP-ERATORIS, Genius standing left holding patera and cornucopia
    Minted in Antioch (_ | Theta / E //ANT Dot). Early to Later A.D. 309
    Reference:– RIC VI Antioch 112c (R) (Citing Oxford; Apparently a rare issue for Maximianus Herculius and only issued from this officina)

    6.39 gms. 26.19 mm. 0 degrees. Better than the RIC plate coin (reverse only illustrated).

    From RIC Notes "A very remarkable innovation, peculiar to this issue, is the reappearance of Herculius (with the long legend Imp C M Aur Val Maximianus P F Aug matching those of Galerius and Licinus, and with cuirassed bust) on rare coins with Genio Imperatoris; this is parallelled at the same time (see RIC VI page 656). Expelled from Italy c. April 308, and rejected at the Carnuntum conference in November 308, Herculius had received ample share in the coinage of Constantine's mints, and it seems that Maximinus (now antagonisitc to both Galerius and Licinius) may have been momentarily willing to demontsrate his hostility by including the name of the man who might still play and anti-Galerian part in the west."


    A not very flattering coin from London.
    Maximianus Herculius - Follis

    Obv:- IMP C MAXIMIANVS P F AVG, Laureate, cuirassed bust right
    Rev:- GENIO POPVLI ROMANI, Genius standing left holding patera and cornucopia
    Minted in London, A.D. 298-300
    Reference:- RIC VI London 17b
    28mm, 8.3 grams


    Maximianus Herculius - Follis

    Obv:– IMP C MAXIMIANVS P F AVG, Laureate head right
    Rev:– IOVI CONS CAES, Jupiter standing left, holding Victoriola in right hand, leaning on sceptre in left, chlamys over left shoulder
    Minted in Alexandria (S | D/P //ALE). A.D. 305 to A.D. 306
    Reference:– RIC VI Alexandria 54 (S)


    Galerius - Follis

    Obv:– GAL VAL MAXIMIANVS NOB CAES, Laureate head right
    Rev:– IOVI CONS CAES, Jupiter standing left holding Victory on globe in right hand, sceptre in left
    Minted in Alexandria (S | B / P // ALE). A.D. 304-305
    Reference:– RIC VI Alexandria 43

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