Gaul and Londinium Production (294-306)


Last updated: 4 July 2017

[Constantius coin photo]

In 293 Diocletian finalized the Institution of a Tetrarchy -- government of the Empire by four interacting rulers -- two Augusti assisted by two subordinate Caesars, which each Augustus would personally select. The two Caesars, chosen because of their proven leadership abilities, assisted the Augusti with civil administration and command of the armies. Caius Galerius Valerius Maximianus was chosen by Diocletian to be his Caesar of the East and Flavius Valerius Constantius was chosen by Maximian Herculius be his Caesar of the West.

The first assignment given Constantius by Maximian Herculius was to remove Carausius, the usurper Augustus of secessionist Britain, and restore that former possession to the Empire. Constantius thereupon beseiged and captured Boulogne and then wrested coastal Gaul from Carausius. Constantius now set about planning the invasion, occupation and restoration of secessionist Britain to the Empire. One of the first orders of business for Constantius in 294 was to insure that a supply of reformed aes coinage (folles) - now the commonplace legal tender of the Roman Empire - was available for use not only by his occupying force, but also by the British civilian populace. To that end Constantius established a Mint in Gaul (exact location usually listed as unknown, although some French sources list it as Boulogne), manned by Lugdunese workers, to produce this invasion coinage - unmarked (i.e. without a mint mark) issued in the names of Diocletian & Maximian Herculius as Augusti and Constantius & Galerius Maximian as Caesars.


Gallery of representative coins

The coins illustrated on this page are from my own personal collection and were photographed by me, illuminated by natural daylight, at various times using a variety of cameras/lenses. I cropped and uniformally sized the images (300 by 300 pixels) using IrfanView, but they have not been enhanced or manipulated in any other way.

RIC Volume VI, Lugdunum, Group I, (iv), folles, Class I, No. 14-21, c. 296, 10.5-8.75 gm.

No. 14a - Diocletian:

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

No. 14b - Maximian Herculius:

[Maximian coin photo] [Maximian coin photo]
IMP C MAXIMIANVS PF AVG ................................. GENIO POP -- VLI ROMANI

No. 17a - Constantius:

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

No. 17b - Galerius Maximian:

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

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