Roman Empire

Constantine III, Western Roman Emperor AD 407-411

RIC 1512; Lyon 250; Depeyrot 22/2, Superb Extremely Fine

Lugdunum, AD 408/9. D N CONSTAN-TINVS P F AVG, diademed, draped and cuirassed bust of Constantine III right. Reverse: VICTORI-AA (sic) AVGGG, emperor standing facing, head right, holding vexillum and victory on globe, foot on bound captive; L-D//COMOB.

Ex Roma XIII (23 March 2017), 998

The reverse type used for the solidi #151 and #152 is somewhat generic for the late Roman Empire in that it shows a military emperor holding a standard, crowned by Victory, and treading on a barbarian captive. However, the engravers’ attention to detail on the present coins makes it clear that the types are intended to refer to victories over specific enemies. The clean shaven face and distinctive hairstyle of the defeated barbarian on 305607 and 305609 may indicate that he is a Visigoth while the bearded barbarian on 305608 is likely to represent a Vandal or one of the Suebi. In AD 407, Constantine III had won victories over these peoples, who had been crossing the Rhine frontier into Gaul. These early successes initially caused the people of Gaul to declare for Constantine III. Unfortunately the victories were fleeting and the usurper could not hold back the barbarian tide for long.