Constantine the Great

Civil War II commemorative coinage



       In 324 A.D., a second civil war broke out between Constantine and Licinius.They fought a battle at Adrianople, with the defeat of Licinius. Licinius fled to Byzantium. Crispus attacked the fleet of Licinius and won a brilliant naval victory. Licinius was put to death in 325 A.D. and Constantine became the sole ruler of the Roman empire. Byzantium was renamed Constantinople and work was started on it to transform it into the new capitol of the Roman empire. Hundreds and hundreds of people were working in the city. A new series of coinage was minted to pay the workers; but these coins also had a message.

      “Four entirely new types were created for Constantine, GLORIA EXERCITVS, GLORIA ROMANORVM, LIBERTAS PVBLICA, and SPES PVBLIC…Here the reverses record a summing up of the Civil War II, the glory of the army constituting the glory of the Empire, the death of the tyrant (SPES PVBLIC) granting liberty for all.” RIC VII pg 567.



 
 

327 AD.
CONSTANTINVS MAX AVG, laureate head right
LIBERTAS PVBLICA, [Public Liberty] Victory standing left on galley, wreath in both hands
B left, CONS in ex.
RIC VII Constantinople 18 r1

This alludes to the naval victory of Crispus on the Bosphorus where he captured Byzantium (soon to be called Constantinople) from Licinius.
This series when first issued have Constantine with a laureate head. Constantine started wearing a diadem on the next issue (possibly because of the pagan associations with the laurel headress)

Constantine the Great  LIBERTAS PVBLICA
A.D. 327-8
CONSTANTINVS MAX AVG, head with rosette diadem
LIBERTAS PVBLICA [Public Liberty] Victory standing left on galley, wreath in both hands
B left, CONS in ex.
RIC VII Constantinople 25 r2
Constantine the Great  LIBERTAS PVBLICA
A.D. 327-8
CONSTANTINVS MAX AVG head with rosette diadem
GLORIA EXERCITVS [The glory of the army]
Soldier holding reversed spear in right, left hand on shield
S in left field, in ex. CONS
Constantinople RIC VII 22 r3
Constantine the Great  GLORIA EXERCITVS
A.D. 327-328
 CONSTANTINVS MAX AVG head with rosette diadem
 GLORIA ROMANORVM [The glory of the Romans] Roma seated on a shield, holding a long sceptre, Victory on a globe in right hand.
left field Z, in ex. CONS
Constantinople RIC 23 s
Constantine the Great  GLORIA ROMANORVM
A.D. 327
 CONSTANTINVS MAX AVG, laureate head right
SPES PVBLIC, chi-rho atop standard of 3 medallions impaling snake
A to left, CONSA in ex.
Constantinople RIC 19 r4
Constantine the Great  SPES PVBLIC

 
 
 

last modified on 25 April  2008
 

Constantine the Great