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Follis Diocletianus, Rome 305–306 A.D.

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posted on 2022-08-09, 07:53 authored by Centre for Ancient Cultures MuseumCentre for Ancient Cultures Museum

References: Vaux, W. S. W. “On a discovery of Roman coins, in the Parish of Little Malvern, Worcestershire”, The Numismatic Chronicle and Journal of the Numismatic Society, vol. 11, 1848, pp. 19–39; Sutherland, C. H. V., "Diocletian's Reform of the Coinage: a Chronological Note1", Journal of roman studies, 45.1-2, 1955, pp. 116-118; Sutherland, C. H. V., Carson, R. A. G. (eds), The Roman Imperial Coinage, vol. 6: from Diocletian's reform (AD 294) to the death of Maximinus (AD 313), Spink & Son Ltd, London, 1967; Grueber, H. A., Coins of the Roman Republic in the British Museum: vol. 1 aes rude, aes signatum, aes grave, and coinage of Rome from B.C. 268, London: British Museum, 1970; Robertson, A. S., Roman Imperial Coins in the Hunter Coin Cabinet, University of Glasgow: V, Diocletian (Reform) to Zeno, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1982.

Coin well centered on both sides; the borders of dots on obverse and reverse are fully visible. On the obverse of this coin, consular bust of Diocletian, with laureate head, radiate and mantled bust right, wearing imperial mantle, an effigy of the emperor on the chest and the inscription D N DIOCLETIANO BEAT SEN AVG. Obverse translation “Domino Nostro Diocletiano Beatissimo Senior Augusti”. On the reverse is inscribed PROVIDENTIA DEORUM and ALE in exergue (Alexandria). Providentia (Providence) and Quies (Goddess of Quiet) standing face to face. Providentia is standing on the left turned to the right, draped. Quies is standing right turned left, holding a laurel branch in her right hand and a long scepter in her left hand. At the centre of the field, a symbol, possibly as a control mark and the letters V. B. “Domino Nostro” is present from 305 A.D. onwards.

Valerius Diocletian re-organised the coinage, requiring that an identifiable mint-mark with letters or mark should be engraved on each officina’s (mint) coins. This example shows the mint name ALE (Alexandria) in the exergue.

Date: 305–306 AD.

Parallels: London, British Museum 1959,1010.19, 1959,1010.23, 1982,1034.9, B.45, B.46, B.72, B.73, B.436, B.6303 (same mint), B.6304 (same mint).

Photo by Steve Morton