Consideraţii statistice asupra utilizării unor simboluri şi teme monetare în Imperiul Roman târziu / Statistic Remarks on the Use of Some Symbols and Representation on the Coinage of the Late Roman Empire (294-364)
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|Excerpt||In an attempt to judge the propagandistic role of the coins the author makes a statistic analysis of some symbols and representations which can be found on the reverse of the coins from A.D. 294-364. The sources used in this purpose were: C.H.V. Sutherland, „The Roman Imperial Coinage, A.D. 294-313”, VI, London, 1973: Patrick M. Brunn „The Roman Imperial Coinage, A.D. 313-337”, VII, London, 1966; J.P.C. Kent, „The Roman Imperial Coinage, A.D. 337-364”, VIII, London. 1981; Georges Depeyrot, „Les monnaies d'or de Diocletian à Constantin A.D. 284-337” Wetteren, 1995. The analysis does not take into consideration the volume of monetary issues. It only shows the presence on the reverse of the imperial regalia and of the Christian symbols.
The use of the diadem as the main symbol of the imperial power since the Constantine's reign is largely spread on the reverse of the billon, silver and gold coins both in the Western and Eastern mints.
The globe, that previously, was a symbol of the divine power of the Gods, also appears on the coin reverses as imperial insigne between 294 - 364 A. D. This attribute is present on the billon coinage, mostly at the Western mints.
The Christian symbol of the cross is mainly represented in the Western mints (Aquileia and Rome). It is quite significant for the propagandistic use of the coinage, that the image of the cross is largely spread on billon coinage, used in large quantities, for every day purposes.
The chrismon appears mostly In the Western regions of the Empire, where it was put in connection with the Constantine the Great victory at Pons Milvius.
The challenge between the old and the new capital of the Empire, is reflected by the presence of the representations of Rome and Constantinopolis on the reverse of many issues. The use of the personification of the imperial capital, first at all of those of Rome, is well represented on the Western issues, especially at Rome, where the memory of Dea Roma was very strong in the 3th - 4th centuries, and even later.
The changes that took place in the nature of the imperial authority, as well the slow passage from the "Pagan" Empire to the "Christian" Empire during the first half of the 4th century A.D. is reflected by the very emphasized presence of the diadem, as supreme attribute of the emperor and by the use of the cross and the chrismon, connected with the new ideology. The shift of the power center of the Empire from the Western part to Eastern regions is marked by the appearance of the representation of Constantinopolis, alongside of those of Rome.
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