Rulers who died violent deaths

Discussion in 'Ancient Coins' started by panzerman, Mar 5, 2021.

  1. panzerman

    panzerman Well-Known Member

    Please post your coins that depict Emperors/ Kings/ Usurpers that where murdered/ executed/ fell in battle:dead:
    AV Solidus ND Constantinople Mint
    Struck 665-68AD
    Constans III 641-68AD/ Byzantine Emperor. 19b7eda3ceffab8e2a5782c55b2f5b33.jpg

    The shaggy/ unkept Constans ended up bludgeoned to death while in the bath tub, by his chamber maid!
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  3. Valentinian

    Valentinian Supporter! Supporter

    This thread would be sorter if it were about rulers who didn't die a violent death.
  4. panzerman

    panzerman Well-Known Member

    I was thinking the same thing! But, this will make for a prolonged epic!
    Only a Poor Old Man likes this.
  5. Bradley Trotter

    Bradley Trotter Supporter! Supporter

    Getting stabbed repeatedly and dying, as a result, would almost certainly qualify as a "violent death."

    Domitian AE Combined Image.jpg

    AE20 of Amphipolis, Macedonia
    81-96 A.D.
    Obverse: AYT KAIΣARho; ΔOMITIANOΣ, laureate head right
    Reverse: AMΦIΠOΛITΩN, Artemis standing left, holding long torch and branch, shield at her feet.
    Weight: 8.5g
    RPC 339, Sear GIC 801
  6. DonnaML

    DonnaML Supporter! Supporter

    Still a more pleasant death than that of Fausta, who supposedly was boiled to death in a bathtub!

    Fausta jpg version - RIC VII 40, Sear RCV IV 16582.jpg

    I don't believe the method of execution of Crispus, her stepson and alleged lover, was recorded:

    Crispus Caesar - jpg version.jpg
    @Valentinian's point is a good one, though: in the couple of centuries after, say, the death of Septimius Severus -- or even going back a little and drawing the line after Marcus Aurelius -- how many emperors died in bed of natural causes? How often, if at all, did at least two emperors in a row die naturally?
  7. Ocatarinetabellatchitchix

    Ocatarinetabellatchitchix Supporter! Supporter

    I think I've never posted this one: Valens and most of his army were killed fighting the Goths at the Battle of Adrianople.

  8. JayAg47

    JayAg47 Well-Known Member

    Also died in bathtub strangled by a slave/wrestler!
    Nero, by slitting his own throat.
    NERO sal.png
    Caracalla, while taking a doodoo.
    Elagabalus, killed then beheaded, his naked body was then dragged along the streets of Rome before being thrown in the Tiber.
    And Valerian, captured by Shapur I, enslaved and used as a foot stool by the Shahanshah, and finally skinned alive. valerian.jpg
  9. DonnaML

    DonnaML Supporter! Supporter

    One could easily group them into distinct categories, like the bathtub deaths above, or these four, all supposedly hacked to pieces by the Praetorian Guard and then, depending on the source, thrown to the mob:

    Elagabalus - bearded with horn - jpg version.jpg

    Julia Soaemias Denarius - Venus Caelestis - jpg version.jpg

    BALBINUS, AD 238. AR Denarius (2.65g). jpg version.jpg

    pupienus denarius jpg version.jpg
  10. Terence Cheesman

    Terence Cheesman Supporter! Supporter

    Aemilian Ar Antoninianus 253 AD Rome Murdered by his own troops who were trying to curry favor with his successor. I guess you could call that a natural death for a Roman Emperor. Obv Bust right radiate draped and cuirassed seen from back. Rv. Virtus standing left with olive branch in his right hand and spear in left.4.06 grms 22 mm Photo by W. Hansen aemilian1.jpg This coin is thought to be part of his first issue and thus is rather instructive about his thinking. Here we see the personification Virtus in effect offering an olive branch of peace to his rivals Unfortunately for him this was rejected and he was killed Eutropius the Roman historian leaves a brief though unkind epitaph "Aemilianus came from an extremely insignificant family (you can almost feel the burn) his reign was even more insignificant, and he was slain in the third month."
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2021
  11. Al Kowsky

    Al Kowsky Well-Known Member

  12. Ignoramus Maximus

    Ignoramus Maximus Well-Known Member

    Poisoned ánd stabbed to death on the same day: some people just can't take a hint...
    Sestertius Commodus AD 183.png
  13. DonnaML

    DonnaML Supporter! Supporter

    I'm pretty sure the story goes that he was urinating by the side of the road when a soldier stabbed him. So at least he died standing up. I assume.
  14. rrdenarius

    rrdenarius non omnibus dormio Supporter

    The story of his rise to power and demise is one of my favorite coin stories. -
    Victorinus, Emperor of Gallic Empire 269 – 271. The Gallic Empire broke away from the Roman Empire from 260 – 274. Victorinus was a successful military commander. He was tribune in 266/267 and co-consul of Rome with Postumus in 268. He succeeded Postumus (Imp of G E 260 – 269) who was killed when he refused to let his army sack a city his army had just defeated, Mogontiacum. Postumus was succeeded by Marius, who probably let the troops sack, Mogontiacum. Marius was killed two or three months later and Victorinus was declared Imperor. Victorinus was killed by one of his commanders whose wife he had seduced.
    Victorinus lot tintin e51 lot 9009 obv 12.19.15.jpg Victorinus lot tintin e51 lot 9009 rev 12.19.15.jpg
  15. OutsiderSubtype

    OutsiderSubtype Well-Known Member

    Maxentius, defeated in battle and drowned in the Tiber.


    @DonnaML Most of the two in a row natural death sequences after Marcus Aurelius that I can think of involve nasty diseases. So still not what you would call stability in succession. Diocletian and Galerius for instance. Or Theodosius I and his sons.
  16. octavius

    octavius Well-Known Member

    Caligula - stabbed to death by Cassius Chaerea, Praetorian.

  17. DonnaML

    DonnaML Supporter! Supporter

    You mean her right hand. Respect her pronouns, please!
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  18. Parthicus

    Parthicus Well-Known Member

    All right, how about a nice string of patricide, rebellion, and incest, Parthian-style? ;)

    Let's start with Phraates III (c.70-57 BC). He was murdered by a conspiracy of his two sons Mithradates IV and Orodes II.
    Phraates III Type 38.jpg
    Mithradates IV (57-54 BC) at first ruled in harmony with his brother, but the two had a falling-out and went to war with each other, and Mithradates was killed.
    Mithradates III.jpg
    Orodes II (57-38 BC), after killing his brother, went on to defend Parthia against Roman incursion under the triumvir Crassus. Though Orodes was not present at the battle where Crassus died, he was later personally introduced to Crassus' severed head o_O. Orodes was killed by his son Phraates IV.
    Orodes II Susa.jpg
    Phraates IV (38-2 BC) had a rather long reign. Eventually he was killed by his wife Musa and son Phraatakes.
    Phraates IV Laodicea.jpg
    Phraatakes and his mother (and wife :vomit:) Musa (2 BC- AD 4) had a fairly short co-regency, as the Parthian nobility did not like them. They were killed by a conspiracy of nobles.
    There was a brief reign by Orodes III (c. AD 6-8), who was killed by the nobles for "excessive cruelty." (Considering the other Parthian kings, I shudder to think how bad he must have been to be considered "excessively" cruel.) His coins are very rare, and I don't have any. He was succeeded by Vonones I (c.AD 8-12), who had spent much time at Rome as a hostage. Vonones would be overthrown by Artabanos IV, but managed to escape alive to Roman territory, eventually being killed while trying to flee to Armenia.
    Vonones I.jpg
    Artabanos IV (AD 10- 38) may have died of natural causes, though details are lacking.

    So, that's seven rulers in a row who were killed. You could probably beat that in the late-third-century AD Roman emperors, but I think that's still an impressive showing.
  19. kevin McGonigal

    kevin McGonigal Well-Known Member

    In deed. Save a tree. Less than half a page
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  20. panzerman

    panzerman Well-Known Member

    Lucilla/ wife of Lucius Verus/ sister of Commodus. Was executed on his (Commodus) orders. c004e5ee4443fe7d1b0107b52bc88ccc.jpg orders
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  21. hotwheelsearl

    hotwheelsearl Well-Known Member

    Surprised nobody's posted the dumbest death of a Roman emperor.

    Valentinian I was so pissed off by the attitude of the Quadi envoys that he went into a yelling rage and literally burst a blood vessel and died of a stroke.
    Some guys just can't keep their cool.

    Valentinian I AE3 RIC IX Sirmium 6a.JPG
    Valentinian I RIC IX Thessalonica 18a t1.JPG
    Valentinian I Van Meter 46 (2020_11_18 03_38_31 UTC).JPG
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