THE BRITANNIC COINAGE OF CONSTANTIUS
Gaul and Londinium Production (294-306)

POST-INVASION COINAGE PRODUCED IN BRITAIN
Detailed Information and Notes

Roman Tetrarchic coin photoRoman Tetrarchic coin photoRoman Tetrarchic coin photoRoman Tetrarchic coin photo

RIC, VOLUME VI, LONDINIUM
GROUP I, c. 297 to 1 May 305
(Abdication of Diocletian & Maximian Herculius)
and
GROUP II Period I, c. 1 May 305 to 25 July 306
(death of Constantius)

Last updated: 10 September 2017


Inasmuch as the information on this web page relates to coinage of the Tetrarchies catalogued and described in THE ROMAN IMPERIAL COINAGE (RIC), Volume VI, I employ the Imperial name forms used in the headers by Sutherland here. The following depiction includes the alternate name forms frequently used by collectors, dealers and authors of historical texts and and reference documents:

DIOCLETIAN ........................ (no other names commonly used)
MAXIMIAN HERCULIUS ...... Maximianus, Herculius
CONSTANTIUS .................... Constantius I, Constantius Chlorus
GALERIUS MAXIMIAN ......... Galerius
SEVERUS ............................. Severus II,
MAXIMINUS .......................... Maximinus II, Maximinus Daia, Daza
CONSTANTINE ..................... Constantine I, Constantinus
MAXENTIUS .......................... (no other names commonly used)
LICINIUS ................................ Licinius I, Licinius Licinianus

Note: Caution should be exercised when attributing the coins of Galerius Maximian & Maximian Herculius due to the similarity of their titulature. Galerius Maximian was both Caesar and Augustus during this time period whereas Maximian Herculius was always only Augustus. Therefor, coins bearing the titulature MAXIMIANVS and NOBIL CAES, NOB CAES, NOBIL C, etc.can only be those of Galerius Maximian. There is a special problem with Galerius as Augustus coins: The titulature is exactly the same as that of Maximian Herculius and frequently the only way to differentiate between the two is by the portraiture on the coin obverse.


This page relates to the re-opening of the London Mint by Constantius, the Intermediate Group coinage of Bastien and the production of coins in Britain catalogued in RIC, Vol. VI, LONDINIUM up to the death of Constantius on 25 July 306.

Recap: After his restoration of Britain to the Empire, Constantius re-opened the London Mint, now as an official facility with one officina (workshop), which continued to operate until its closure in 325. It seems very likely that much of the early unmarked coinage was produced at the London Mint using British die engravers and other workers, formerly employed by the Carausius - Allectus Mints, now supervised and mixed in with Lugdunese mint workers who accompanied the Constantius invasion force.

Random notes relating to the early coinage produced in Britain

Initial series of coins produced at the London Mint in 297

The initial folles c. 297, again issued in the names of Diocletian & Maximian Herculius as Augustus and Constantius & Galerius Maximian as Caesar, closely followed the design, size and weight of the unknown Continental Mint "Invasion" coinage except they now bore a LON mint mark in the reverse exergue.


RIC Volume VI, Londinium, Group I, (i), folles, No. 1-5, c. 297, 11.0-9.5 gm, 28/26 mm. Obverses and Reverses in the style of the unknown Continental Mint invasion coinage. Laureate head, right, with bare neck truncation. NOTE: Class I category descriptor is found in RIC VI, Lugdunum, Group I (page 243).

Exemplar coin No.1a - Diocletian:

[Diocletian coin photo] [Diocletian coin photo]
IMP C DIOCLETIANVS PF AVG .................... GENIO POPV -- LI ROMANI
LON
in exergue

9.1 gm.
As depicted in RIC Volume VI, Plate 1.
Subsequent coinage produced at the London Mint was unmarked (i.e. no LON mint mark in the reverse exergue) until the issue of reduced size/weight folles after the death of Constantius in 306.


Intermediate Group folles (Bastien) c. 297 that often feature Lugdunum style laureate heads and London style lettering. Sometimes with laureate busts in fine style with elaborate consular cuirasses (Stewartby).

Exemplar coin: Galerius Maximian as Caesar Intermediate Group (Bastien: a) - laureate truncated bare bust with long ribbon tie lying on neck -- London style lettering.

[Galerius coin photo] [Galerius coin photo]
C VAL MAXIMIANVS NOB C ........................... GENIO POPV -- LI ROMANI

10.1 gm.


Exemplar coin: Galerius Maximian as Caesar Intermediate Group (Bastien: b) - laureate and cuirassed bust with long ribbon tie lying on neck -- London style lettering.

[Galerius coin photo] [Galerius coin photo]
MAXIMIANVS NOB CAES .............................. GENIO POPV -- LI ROMANI

9.6 gm.

Succeeding unmarked Group I folles

The obverse busts are mostly simply curaissed but occasionally draped, (rarely with helmets, spears and shields, etc.)


RIC Volume VI, Londinium, Group I, (ii), folles, Class II, (a), No. 6-16, c. 300 onward, 11.0-9.5 gm, 28/26 mm. Laureate bust, right, cuirassed, or cuirassed and draped - small head on a tall neck, reminiscent of some of the Carausius ~ Allectus coinage.

Exemplar coin No. 6b - Maximian Herculius:

[Maximianus coin photo] [Maximianus coin photo]
IMP C MAXIMIANVS PF AVG .............................. GENIO POPV -- LI ROMANI

9.7 gm.


Exemplar coin No. 14a - Constantius as Caesar:

[Constantius coin photo] [Constantius coin photo]
FL VAL CONSTANTINVS NOB C .............................. GENIO POPV -- LI ROMANI

9.2 gm.
Influence of Carausius/Allectus die engravers?


Exemplar coin No. 15 - Galerius Maximian as Caesar:

[Galerius coin photo] [Galerius coin photo]
MAXIMIANVS NOB CAES ........................... GENIO POPV -- LI ROMANI

11.6 gm.


RIC Volume VI, Londinium, Group I, (ii), folles, Class II, (b), No. 17-22, c. 300 onward, 10.8-9.0 gm, 27/26 mm. Laureate bust, right, cuirassed, or cuirassed and draped - shorter necks and proportional heads.

Exemplar coin No. 17 - Maximian Herculius:

[Constantius coin photo] [Constantius coin photo]
IMP C MAXIMIANVS P F AVG .............................. GENIO POPV -- LI ROMANI

8.5 gm.


Exemplar coin No. 20 - Constantius as Caesar:

[Constantius coin photo] [Constantius coin photo]
FL VAL CONSTANTIVS NOB C .............................. GENIO POPV -- LI ROMANI

8.8 gm.
Possible intermediate issue -- long ribbon tie laying on neck.


Exemplar coin No. 21 - Galerius Maximian as Caesar:

[Galerius coin photo] [Galerius coin photo]
MAXIMIANVS NOB CAES .............................. GENIO POPV -- LI ROMANI

10.2 gm.
Possible variant - "palmed" cuirass (Stewartby).


Exemplar coin No. 22 - Constantius as Caesar:

[Condtantius coin photo] [Constantius coin photo]
CONSTANTIVS NOB C ................................. GENIO POPV -- LI ROMANI

11.9 gm.
Possible variant - elaborate "consular" cuirass (Stewartby).


RIC Volume VI, Londinium, Group I, (iii), folles, Class III, c. 303 onward, No. 23-39 - Large, spread, laureate bust, cuirassed and sometimes draped.

Exemplar coin No. 25 - Maximian Herculius:

[Maximian coin photo] [Maximian coin photo]
IMP MAXIMIANVS P F AVG ................................. GENIO POPV -- LI ROMANI

10.2 gm.
Draped bust.


Exemplar coin No. 28a - Diocletian:

[Diocletian coin photo] [Diocletian coin photo]
IMP DIOCLETIANVS AVG ................................. GENIO POPV -- LI ROMANI

11.5 gm.
Latest obverse legend style.


Exemplar coin No. 33 - Galerius Maximian as Caesar:

[Galerius coin photo] [Galerius coin photo]
MAXIMIANVS NOBIL C ................................. GENIO POPV -- LI ROMANI

10.2 gm.


RIC Volume VI, Londinium, Group II, Period I: until the death of Constantius on 25 July 306 -- Period II: after the death of Constantius until the Introduction of mint marked (PLN) reduced size folles in the summer of 307

Titulature Notes:
Augustus titulature: IMP .......................................................................... AVG
Caesar titulature: NOB C | NOBIL CAES | NOBILISSIMVS CAESAR (etc.)

Constantius as Augustus:
* All coins with Augustus titulature were minted during Period I.

Galerius Maximian as Augustus:
* All coins with the following Augustus titulature were minted during Period I. Note that there is some duplication of earlier Maximianus Herculius titulature here which often causes confusion. There is a special problem with Galerius as Augustus coins: The titulature is exactly the same as that of Maximian Herculius and frequently the only way to differentiate between the two is by the portraiture on the coin obverse. The RIC, Londinium, Group II, header lists the Augusti as Constantius and Galerius Maximian only for Period I with Constantius titulature prefixed with 1 and Galerius Maximian titulature prefixed with 2 as follows:

2a IMP C MAXIMIANVS PIVS FEL AVG
2b IMP C MAXIMIANVS P FEL AVG
2c IMP C MAXIMIANVS P F AVG
2d IMP C MAXIMIANVS P AVG
2e IMP C MAXIMIANVS P F IN AVG
2f IMP MAXIMIANVS P F AVG

Severus II
* All coins with Caesar titulature were minted during Period I.
* All coins with Augustus titulature were minted during Period II.

Maximinus
* All coins with GAL VAL MAXIMINVS or SEVERVS ET MAXIMINVS in the titulature were minted during Period I.
* Coins with other Caesar titulature were also most likely minted during Period I.


In 303 the two Augusti announced their intention to simultaneously abdicate and retire (Maximian Herculius somewhat reluctently), their titles and authority to be assumed by the Caesars, who in turn would appoint new Caesars thus perpetuating the system. Diocletian fell severely ill in 304 followed by a lengthy recovery. Diocletian and Maximian Herculius did in fact abdicate and retire in 305 to become Seniores Augusti.


Commemorative Abdication coinage - Seniore Augustus (Senior=retired):

RIC VI, Londinium, No. 77a, Diocletian:

[Abdication coin photo] [Abdication coin photo]
DN DIOCLETIANO FELICISSIMO SEN AVG
PROVIDENTIA DEORVM QVIES AVGG

8.9 gm.
Obverse: Laureate bust of Diocletian in Imperial mantle holding mappa in right hand and olive branch in left hand.
Reverse: Personification of Providentia, standing left, and extending hand to personification of Quies, standing right, holding olive branch and leaning on sceptre.


RIC VI, Londinium, No. 76b, Maximian Herculius:

[Abdication coin photo] [Abdication coin photo]
DN MAXIMIANO BEATISSIMO SEN AVG
PROVIDENTIA DEORVM QVIES AVGG

9.14 gm.
Obverse: Laureate bust of Maximian Herculius in Imperial mantle holding mappa in right hand and olive branch in left hand.
Reverse: Personification of Providentia, standing left, and extending hand to personification of Quies, standing right, holding olive branch and leaning on sceptre.


Exemplar coin No. 42 - Galerius Maximian as Augustus:

[Galerius coin photo] [Galerius coin photo]
IMP C MAXIMIANVS P F AVG ......................... GENIO POPV -- LI ROMANI

9.7 gm.
Identical obverse inscription (2C) to the primary one of Maximian Herculius.


Exemplar coin No. 47 - Constantius as Augustus:

[Constantius coin photo] [Constantius coin photo]
IMP CONSTANTIVS PIVS FEL AVG ....................... GENIO POPV -- LI ROMANI

9.1 gm.
Earliest obverse legend style.


Exemplar coin No. 59a - Severus as Caesar:

[Severus coin photo] [Severus coin photo]
SEVERVS NOBILISSIMVS CAES ......................... GENIO POPV -- LI ROMANI

10.7 gm.
Earliest obverse legend style.
Draped bust.


Exemplar coin No. 59b - Maximinus as Caesar:

[Maximinus coin photo] [Maximinus coin photo]
MAXIMINVS NOBILISSIMVS NOB C ......................... GENIO POPV -- LI ROMANI

10.8 gm.
Earliest obverse legend style.
Draped bust.


Exemplar coin No. 63a - Severus as Caesar:

[Severus coin photo] [Severus coin photo]
SEVERVS NOBILIS C ......................... GENIO POPV -- LI ROMANI

11.3 gm.
Fully silvered -- pitted obverse.
Draped bust.
As depicted in RIC Volume VI, Plate 1.


Exemplar coin No. 63b - Maximinus as Caesar:

[Maximinus coin photo] [Maximinus coin photo]
MAXIMINVS NOBILIS C ......................... GENIO POPV -- LI ROMANI

10.9 gm.
Draped bust.


Exemplar coin No. 65 - Maximinus as Caesar:

[Maximinus coin photo] [Maximinus coin photo]
MAXIMINVS NOBILI CAES ......................... GENIO POPV -- LI ROMANI

8.9 gm.
Draped bust.


RIC VI, Londinium, No. 89b, Constantine as Caesar

[Constantine coin photo] [Constantine coin photo]
FL VAL CONSTANTINIVS NOB C ........................... GENIO POP ROM (PLN)

Unreduced -- 9.3g.
Draped laureate bust, Genius with head towered and loins draped.
Issued shortly after the death of Constantius following his recognition as Caesar by Galerius Maximian.
This was effectively the end of the Tetrarchy.
Hereafter, London Mint folles were issued at reduced size and weight (and with PLN in the reverse exergue) by Constantine.
.


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