Ostrogothic Kingdom

Athalaric, King 526-534

COI 32; MIB 24; MEC 1, -, Extremely Fine

Rome, in the name of Byzantine emperor Justin I (518-527). D N IVSTI-NVS P F (AV)G, diademed, helmeted, and cuirassed bust of Justin I facing slightly right, holding spear over shoulder and shield with horseman spearing fallen enemy motif. Reverse: VICTORI-A AVGGG, Victory standing facing, head left, holding long jewelled cross; in left field, *; A//COMOB.

Ex NAC 93 (24 May 2016), 1158; Kovacs List 27 (1994), 113

Athalaric, a grandson of Theodoric the Great, succeeded his grandfather as king of the Ostrogoths at the age of ten. Due to his youth, he was placed under the regency of his mother Amalasonte. She attempted to bring him up in the Roman tradition, with an emphasis on literature and art, but the Ostrogothic nobility pressured her to raise him according to Germanic custom. He became such a heavy drinker that within eight years he was dead, his body exhausted by constant drunkenness. These gold solidi were struck in Rome with the imperial types of Justinian I, still giving the illusion of service to the Byzantine Empire.