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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Roman Coins| ▸ |Constantinian Era| ▸ |Commemoratives||View Options:  |  |  |   

Roman Commemoratives, 307 - 361 A.D.

Constantine the Great and his sons issued small bronze coins commemorating the old capital, Rome, and the new capital, Constantinople, to symbolize the equality of the two cities and the new importance of Constantinople to the empire. On this page we also list consecration commemoratives issued by Constantine and his sons.


Lot of 20 Roman Empire City of Constantinople Commemoratives Bronzes 330 - 346 A.D.

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On 11 May 330, Constantine I refounded Byzantium, renamed it Constantinopolis after himself, and moved the capital of the Roman Empire from Rome to his new city. The new capital was Christian, old gods and traditions were either replaced or assimilated into a framework of Christian symbolism. Constantine built the new Church of the Holy Apostles on the site of a temple to Aphrodite. Generations later there was the story that a divine vision led Constantine to this spot. The capital would often be compared to the 'old' Rome as Nova Roma Constantinopolitana, the "New Rome of Constantinople." Special commemorative coins were issued with types for both Rome and Constantinople to advertise the importance of the new capital.
LT85418. Bronze reduced centenionalis, SRCV IV 16444 ff. (various mints), all VF, nice coins, 330 - 346 A.D.; obverse CONSTANTINOPOLIS, laureate and helmeted bust of Constantinopolis left, wearing imperial cloak, scepter over left shoulder; reverse Victory standing left, right foot on prow, scepter in right hand, resting left hand on grounded shield, mintmark in exergue; one with soldiers with standard reverse, unattributed mint or issue, no flips or tags, the actual coins in the photographs, as-is, no returns; $200.00 (176.00)


Lot of 20 Roman Empire City of Constantinople Commemorative Bronzes 330 - 346 A.D.

Click for a larger photo
On 11 May 330, Constantine I refounded Byzantium, renamed it Constantinopolis after himself, and moved the capital of the Roman Empire from Rome to his new city. The new capital was Christian, old gods and traditions were either replaced or assimilated into a framework of Christian symbolism. Constantine built the new Church of the Holy Apostles on the site of a temple to Aphrodite. Generations later there was the story that a divine vision led Constantine to this spot. The capital would often be compared to the 'old' Rome as Nova Roma Constantinopolitana, the "New Rome of Constantinople." Special commemorative coins were issued with types for both Rome and Constantinople to advertise the importance of the new capital.
LT85420. Bronze reduced centenionalis, SRCV IV 16444 ff. (various mints), VF, all nice coins, 330 - 346 A.D.; obverse CONSTANTINOPOLIS, laureate and helmeted bust of Constantinopolis left, wearing imperial cloak, scepter over left shoulder; reverse Victory standing left, right foot on prow, scepter in right hand, resting left hand on grounded shield, mintmark in exergue; unattributed mint or issue, correction: one of the 20 coins is a Roma commem. , no flips or tags, the actual coins in the photographs, as-is, no returns; $200.00 (176.00)


Constantine the Great, Early 307 - 22 May 337 A.D.

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Soon after the Feast of Easter 337, Constantine fell seriously ill. He left Constantinople for the hot baths near his mother's city of Helenopolis. There, in a church his mother built in honor of Lucian the Apostle, he prayed, and there he realized that he was dying. He attempted to return to Constantinople, making it only as far as a suburb of Nicomedia. He summoned the bishops, and told them of his hope to be baptized in the River Jordan, where Christ was written to have been baptized. He requested the baptism right away, promising to live a more Christian life should he live through his illness. The bishops, Eusebius records, "performed the sacred ceremonies according to custom." It has been thought that Constantine put off baptism as long as he did so as to be absolved from as much of his sin as possible. Constantine died soon after at a suburban villa called Achyron, on 22 May 337.
RL88038. Billon reduced centenionalis, RIC VIII Antioch 39; LRBC I 1374; SRCV V 17488; Voetter 34; Cohen VII 760; Hunter V p. 283, 4 ff. var. (officina), EF, attractive highlighting desert patina, light marks, tight flan, weight 1.705 g, maximum diameter 15.2 mm, die axis 0o, 9th officina, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, posthumous, Sep 337 - 340 A.D.; obverse DV CONSTANTINVS PT AVGG, veiled bust right; reverse Constantine in quadriga right, veiled, the hand of God reaches down to take him to heaven, star above, SMANΘ in exergue; $130.00 (114.40)


Constantine the Great, Early 307 - 22 May 337 A.D.

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Soon after the Feast of Easter 337, Constantine fell seriously ill. He left Constantinople for the hot baths near his mother's city of Helenopolis. There, in a church his mother built in honor of Lucian the Apostle, he prayed, and there he realized that he was dying. He attempted to return to Constantinople, making it only as far as a suburb of Nicomedia. He summoned the bishops, and told them of his hope to be baptized in the River Jordan, where Christ was written to have been baptized. He requested the baptism right away, promising to live a more Christian life should he live through his illness. The bishops, Eusebius records, "performed the sacred ceremonies according to custom." It has been thought that Constantine put off baptism as long as he did so as to be absolved from as much of his sin as possible. Constantine died soon after at a suburban villa called Achyron, on 22 May 337.
RL87872. Billon reduced centenionalis, Hunter V p. 284, 12 (also 1st officina); RIC VIII Alexandria p. 541, 32; LRBC I 1473; SRCV V 17473; Cohen VII 716, EF, excellent centering, brown tone with some silvering, flow lines, reverse center a little weak, tiny edge cracks, weight 1.706 g, maximum diameter 16.9 mm, die axis 0o, 1st officina, Alexandria mint, posthumous, late 347 - 348 A.D.; obverse DV CONSTANTINVS PT AVGG, veiled bust right; reverse VN - MR (venerabilis memoria - revered memory), Constantine standing slightly right, head right, veiled and togate, raising right hand, SMALA in exergue; ex Beast Coins, ex Malter Galleries; $125.00 (110.00)


City of Constantinople Commemorative, 330 - 331 A.D.

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On 11 May 330, Constantine I refounded Byzantium, renamed it Constantinopolis after himself, and moved the capital of the Roman Empire from Rome to his new city. The new capital was Christian, old gods and traditions were either replaced or assimilated into a framework of Christian symbolism. Constantine built the new Church of the Holy Apostles on the site of a temple to Aphrodite. Generations later there was the story that a divine vision led Constantine to this spot. The capital would often be compared to the 'old' Rome as Nova Roma Constantinopolitana, the "New Rome of Constantinople." Special commemorative coins were issued with types for both Rome and Constantinople to advertise the importance of the new capital.
RL82770. Billon reduced centenionalis, Hunter V 3 (also 2nd officina), RIC VII Trier 543, LRBC I 66, SRCV IV 16445, Cohen VII 21, EF, sharp detail, slightly off center on a tight flan, clashed reverse die, weight 2.398 g, maximum diameter 16.4 mm, die axis 180o, 2nd officina, Treveri (Trier, Germany) mint, 330 - 331 A.D.; obverse CONSTANTINOPOLIS, laureate and helmeted bust of Constantinopolis left, wearing imperial cloak, scepter over left shoulder; reverse Victory standing left, right foot on prow, scepter in right hand, resting left hand on grounded shield, TRS in exergue; $105.00 (92.40)


Lot of 2 AE4 Constantine the Great Consecration Commemoratives

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Soon after the Feast of Easter 337, Constantine fell seriously ill. He left Constantinople for the hot baths near his mother's city of Helenopolis. There, in a church his mother built in honor of Lucian the Apostle, he prayed, and there he realized that he was dying. He attempted to return to Constantinople, making it only as far as a suburb of Nicomedia. He summoned the bishops, and told them of his hope to be baptized in the River Jordan, where Christ was written to have been baptized. He requested the baptism right away, promising to live a more Christian life should he live through his illness. The bishops, Eusebius records, "performed the sacred ceremonies according to custom." It has been thought that Constantine put off baptism as long as he did so as to be absolved from as much of his sin as possible. Constantine died soon after at a suburban villa called Achyron, on 22 May 337.
LT88496. Bronze Lot, Lot of 2 billion reduced centenionales, EF, dark patinas with earthen deposits, c. 15 - 16mm, Antioch and Alexandria mint, posthumous, late 347 - 348 A.D.; obverse DV CONSTANTINVS PT AVGG, veiled bust right; reverse VN - MR (venerabilis memoria - revered memory), Constantine standing slightly right, head right, veiled and togate, raising right hand, SMANH/SMALΓ in exergue; the actual coins in the photograph, no tags or flips, 2 coins; $80.00 (70.40)


City of Rome Commemorative, 336 - 337 A.D.

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Much less common than the wolf and twins reverse type.
RL20865. Billon reduced centenionalis, RIC VII Constantinople 143 (R3), LRBC I 1037, SRCV IV 16530, Cohen VII 1, VF, porous, ragged flan, weight 1.453 g, maximum diameter 15.4 mm, die axis 0o, 7th officina, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, 336 - 337 A.D.; obverse VRBS ROMA, helmeted bust of Roma left wearing imperial mantle; reverse GLORIA EXERCITVS (glory of the army), two soldiers standing facing, flanking one standard in center, heads confronted, each holds a spear in outer hand and rests inner hand on grounded shield, CONSZ in exergue; rare; $27.00 (23.76)


City of Rome Commemorative, 347 - 348 A.D.

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This type is likely the result a mint error, mismatching obverse and reverse types. This votive reverse was used for Constans and Constantius II and was probably not intended for use with a city commemorative obverse.
RL91933. Billon reduced centenionalis, cf. RIC VIII Heraclea 56, LRBC 965, SRCV IV -, VF/aF, on a small flan, weak reverse, encrustation, weight 2.235 g, maximum diameter 13.9 mm, die axis 180o, Heraclea(?) mint, 347 - 348 A.D.; obverse VRBS ROMA, helmeted bust of Roma left wearing imperial mantle; reverse VOT / XX / MVLT / XXX in four lines with laurel wreath, SMHB(?) in exergue (off flan); scarce; $25.00 (22.00)


City of Constantinople Commemorative, 331 and 333 - 334 A.D.

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On 11 May 330, Constantine I refounded Byzantium, renamed it Constantinopolis after himself, and moved the capital of the Roman Empire from Rome to his new city. The new capital was Christian, old gods and traditions were either replaced or assimilated into a framework of Christian symbolism. Constantine built the new Church of the Holy Apostles on the site of a temple to Aphrodite. Generations later there was the story that a divine vision led Constantine to this spot. The capital would often be compared to the 'old' Rome as Nova Roma Constantinopolitana, the "New Rome of Constantinople." Special commemorative coins were issued with types for both Rome and Constantinople to advertise the importance of the new capital.
RL88794. Billon reduced centenionalis, RIC VII Cyzicus 92 (R4), LRBC I 1220, SRCV IV 16476, Cohen VII 22, Hunter V 17 var. (2nd officina), F, mottled green and red patina, light earthen encrustation, spots of corrosion, weight 1.907 g, maximum diameter 17.7 mm, die axis 180o, 5th officina, Cyzicus (Kapu Dagh, Turkey) mint, 331 and 333 - 334 A.D.; obverse CONSTANTINOPOLI, laureate and helmeted bust of Constantinopolis left, wearing imperial cloak, scepter over left shoulder; reverse Victory standing left, right foot on prow, scepter in right hand, resting left hand on grounded shield, wreath left, SMKE in exergue; $14.00 (12.32)


City of Constantinople Commemorative, 333 - 335 A.D.

Click for a larger photo
On 11 May 330, Constantine I refounded Byzantium, renamed it Constantinopolis after himself, and moved the capital of the Roman Empire from Rome to his new city. The new capital was Christian, old gods and traditions were either replaced or assimilated into a framework of Christian symbolism. Constantine built the new Church of the Holy Apostles on the site of a temple to Aphrodite. Generations later there was the story that a divine vision led Constantine to this spot. The capital would often be compared to the 'old' Rome as Nova Roma Constantinopolitana, the "New Rome of Constantinople." Special commemorative coins were issued with types for both Rome and Constantinople to advertise the importance of the new capital.
RL88638. Bronze reduced centenionalis, Hunter V 20 (also 1st officina), RIC VII Alexandria 64 (R1), SRCV IV 16481, LRBC I 1432, Cohen VII 21, aVF/aF, well centered, dark patina, rough, weight 1.625 g, maximum diameter 19.1 mm, die axis 0o, 1st officina, Alexandria mint, 333 - 335 A.D.; obverse CONSTANTINOPOLIS, laureate and helmeted bust of Constantinopolis left, wearing imperial cloak, scepter over left shoulder; reverse Victory standing left, right foot on prow, scepter in right hand, resting left hand on grounded shield, SMALA in exergue; scarce; $3.49 (3.07)




  



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OBVERSE| LEGENDS|

CONSTANTINOPOLI
CONSTANTINOPOLIS
POPROMANVS
ROMA
VRBSROMA
VRBSROMABEATA


REFERENCES|

Bruun, P. The Roman Imperial Coinage, Vol VII, Constantine and Licinius A.D. 313 - 337. (London, 1966).
Carson, R., P. Hill & J. Kent. Late Roman Bronze Coinage. (London, 1960).
Carson, R., H. Sutherland & J. Kent. The Roman Imperial Coinage, Vol VIII, The Family of Constantine I, A.D. 337 - 364. (London, 1981).
Cohen, H. Description historique des monnaies frappes sous l'Empire Romain, Vol. 7: Carausius to Constantine & sons. (Paris, 1888).
Failmezger, V. Roman Bronze Coins From Paganism to Christianity, 294 - 364 A.D. (Washington D.C., 2002).
Milchev, S. The Coins of Constantine the Great. (Sophia, 2007).
Paolucci, R. & A. Zub. La monetazione di Aquileia Romana. (Padova, 2000).
Robinson, A. Roman Imperial Coins in the Hunter Coin Cabinet, University of Glasgow, Vol. V. Diocletian (Reform) to Zeno. (Oxford, 1982).
Sear, D. Roman Coins and Their Values, Vol. IV: The Tetrarchies and the Rise of the House of Constantine: The Collapse of Paganism and the Triumph of Christianity, Diocletian To Constantine I, AD 284 - 337. (London, 2011).
Sear, D. Roman Coins and Their Values, Vol. V: The Christian Empire: The Later Constantinian Dynasty and the Houses of Valentinian and Theodosius and Their Successors, Constantine II to Zeno, AD 337 - 491. (London, 2014).
Vagi, D. Coinage and History of the Roman Empire. (Sidney, 1999).
Voetter, O. Die Mnzen der romischen Kaiser, Kaiserinnen und Caesaren von Diocletianus bis Romulus: Katalog der Sammlung Paul Gerin. (Vienna, 1921).

Catalog current as of Monday, August 19, 2019.
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Commemoratives