SEPTIMIUS SEVERUS 194AD Sestertius THREE MONETAE Ancient Roman Coin i42073
Item: i42073 Authentic Ancient Coin of. Septimius Severus – Roman Emperor : 193-211 A. Bronze Sestertius 28mm (21.07 grams) Rome mint: 194 A. Reference: RIC 678; C. 337; BMC 522; Hill, Severus 111 L SEPT SEV PERT AVG IMP IIII, Laureate head right. MONET AVG COS II P P S C, The three Monetae standing facing, heads left, each holding cornucopia and scales. Depictions of the Three Monetae are infrequent on coinage and this coin being one of the earlier depictions of them. All three figures hold a cornucopia and set of scales. The three figures represent the three principal coining metals gold, silver and copper. We may make an educated guess that the central figure represents gold and the two others being bronze and silver. Juno, called Hera by the Greeks. The word Ju-no contains the same root as Ju-piter. As Jupiter is the king of heaven and the gods, so Juno is the queen of heaven, or the female Jupiter. She was worshipped at Rome as the queen of heaven, from early times, with the surname of Regina. At a later period her worship was solemnly transferred form Veii to Rome, where a sanctuary was dedicated to her on the Aventine. As Jupiter was the protector of the male sex, so Juno watched over the female sex. She was supposed to accompany every woman through life, from the moment of her birth to her death. Hence she bore the special surnames of Virginalis and Matrona , as well as the general ones of Opigena and Sospita , and under the last mentioned name she was worshipped at Lanuvium. On their birthday women offered sacrifices to Juno surnamed Natalis , just as men sacrificed to their genius natalis. The great festival, celebrated by all the women, in honor of Juno, was called Matronalia , and took place on the 1st of March. Her protection of women, and especially her power of making them fruitful, is further alluded to in the festival Populifugia , as well as the surname of Februlis, Februata, Februta, or Februalis. Juno was further, like Saturn, the guardian of finances, and under the name of Moneta she had a temple on the Capitoline hill, which contained the mint. The most important period in a woman’s life is that of her marriage, and she was therefore believed especially to preside over marriage. Hence she was called Juga or Jugalis , and had a variety of other names, such as Pronuba, Cinxia, Lucina. The month of June, which is said to have been originally called Junonius, was considered to be the most favorable period for marrying. Women in childbed invoked Juno Lucina to help them, and newly-born children were likewise under her protection: hence she was sometimes confounded with the Greek Artemis or Ilithyia. In Etruria she was worshipped under the name of Cupra. She was also worshipped at Falerii, Lanuvium, Aricia, Tibur, Praeneste, and other places. In the representations of the Roman Juno that have come down to us, the type of the Greek Hera is commonly adopted. L ucius Septimius Severus (or rarely Severus I) (April 11, 145/146-February 4, 211) was a Roman general, and Roman Emperor from April 14, 193 to 211. He was born in what is now the Berber part of Rome’s historic Africa Province. Septimius Severus was born and raised at Leptis Magna (modern Berber , southeast of Carthage , modern Tunisia). Severus came from a wealthy, distinguished family of equestrian rank. Severus was of Italian Roman ancestry on his mother’s side and of Punic or Libyan -Punic ancestry on his father’s. Little is known of his father, Publius Septimius Geta , who held no major political status but had two cousins who served as consuls under emperor Antoninus Pius. His mother, Fulvia Pia’s family moved from Italy to North Africa and was of the Fulvius gens, an ancient and politically influential clan, which was originally of plebeian status. His siblings were a younger Publius Septimius Geta and Septimia Octavilla. Severuss maternal cousin was Praetorian Guard and consul Gaius Fulvius Plautianus. In 172, Severus was made a Senator by the then emperor Marcus Aurelius. In 187 he married secondly Julia Domna. In 190 Severus became consul , and in the following year received from the emperor Commodus (successor to Marcus Aurelius) the command of the legions in Pannonia. On the murder of Pertinax by the troops in 193, they proclaimed Severus Emperor at Carnuntum , whereupon he hurried to Italy. The former emperor, Didius Julianus , was condemned to death by the Senate and killed, and Severus took possession of Rome without opposition. The legions of Syria , however, had proclaimed Pescennius Niger emperor. At the same time, Severus felt it was reasonable to offer Clodius Albinus , the powerful governor of Britannia who had probably supported Didius against him, the rank of Caesar, which implied some claim to succession. With his rearguard safe, he moved to the East and crushed Niger’s forces at the Battle of Issus. The following year was devoted to suppressing Mesopotamia and other Parthian vassals who had backed Niger. When afterwards Severus declared openly his son Caracalla as successor, Albinus was hailed emperor by his troops and moved to Gallia. Severus, after a short stay in Rome, moved northwards to meet him. In the Battle of Lugdunum , with an army of 100,000 men, mostly composed of Illyrian , Moesian and Dacian legions, Severus defeated and killed Clodius Albinus, securing his full control over the Empire. Severus was at heart a soldier , and sought glory through military exploits. In 197 he waged a brief and successful war against the Parthian Empire in retaliation for the support given to Pescennius Niger. The Parthian capital Ctesiphon was sacked by the legions, and the northern half of Mesopotamia was restored to Rome. His relations with the Roman Senate were never good. Severus ordered the execution of dozens of Senators on charges of corruption and conspiracy against him, replacing them with his own favorites. He also disbanded the Praetorian Guard and replaced it with one of his own, made up of 50,000 loyal soldiers mainly camped at Albanum , near Rome (also probably to grant the emperor a kind of centralized reserve). During his reign the number of legions was also increased from 25/30 to 33. He also increased the number of auxiliary corps (numerii), many of these troops coming from the Eastern borders. Additionally the annual wage for a soldier was raised from 300 to 500 denarii. Although his actions turned Rome into a military dictatorship , he was popular with the citizens of Rome, having stamped out the rampant corruption of Commodus’s reign. According to Cassius Dio, however, after 197 Severus fell heavily under the influence of his Praetorian Prefect, Gaius Fulvius Plautianus , who came to have almost total control of most branches of the imperial administration. Plautianus’s daughter, Fulvia Plautilla , was married to Severus’s son, Caracalla. Plautianuss excessive power came to an end in 205, when he was denounced by the Emperor’s dying brother and killed. The two following praefecti , including the jurist Aemilius Papinianus , received however even larger powers. Campaigns in Caledonia (Scotland). Starting from 208 Severus undertook a number of military actions in Roman Britain , reconstructing Hadrian’s Wall and campaigning in Scotland. He reached the area of the Moray Firth in his last campaign in Caledonia, as was called Scotland by the Romans.. In 210 obtained a peace with the Picts that lasted practically until the final withdrawal of the Roman legions from Britain, before falling severely ill in Eboracum (York). He is famously said to have given the advice to his sons: “Be harmonious, enrich the soldiers, and scorn all other men” before he died at Eboracum on. Upon his death in 211, Severus was deified by the Senate and succeeded by his sons, Caracalla and Geta , who were advised by his wife Julia Domna. The stability Severus provided the Empire was soon gone under their reign. Though his military expenditure was costly to the empire, Severus was the strong, able ruler that Rome needed at the time. He began a tradition of effective emperors elevated solely by the military. Severus was also distinguished for his buildings. Apart from the triumphal arch in the Roman Forum carrying his full name, he also built the Septizodium in Rome and enriched greatly his native city of Leptis Magna (including another triumphal arch on the occasion of his visit of 203). Christians were persecuted during the reign of Septimus Severus. Severus allowed the enforcement of policies already long-established, which meant that Roman authorities did not intentionally seek out Christians, but when people were accused of being Christians they could either curse Jesus and make an offering to Roman gods , or be executed. Furthermore, wishing to strengthen the peace by encouraging religious harmony through syncretism , Severus tried to limit the spread of the two quarrelsome groups who refused to yield to syncretism by outlawing conversion to Christianity or Judaism. Individual officials availed themselves of the laws to proceed with rigor against the Christians. Naturally the emperor, with his strict conception of law, did not hinder such partial persecution, which took place in Egypt and the Thebaid , as well as in Africa proconsularis and the East. Christian martyrs were numerous in Alexandria cf. Clement of Alexandria , Stromata , ii. 20; Eusebius , Church History , V. No less severe were the persecutions in Africa, which seem to have begun in 197 or 198 cf. Tertullian’s Ad martyres , and included the Christians known in the Roman martyrology as the martyrs of Madaura. Probably in 202 or 203 Felicitas and Perpetua suffered for their faith. Persecution again raged for a short time under the proconsul Scapula in 211, especially in Numidia and Mauritania. Later accounts of a Gallic persecution, especially at Lyon , are legendary. In general it may thus be said that the position of the Christians under Septimius Severus was the same as under the Antonines ; but the law of this Emperor at least shows clearly that the rescript of Trajan. 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