Roman Empire

Glycerius, Western Roman Emperor AD 473-474

Cf. RIC 3106 = Lacam 6 = Ranieri 179 = Depeyrot 33/1, Choice Very Fine

Ravenna, or possibly a Visigothic mint in Gaul. D N GLVCER-IVS P F AVG, diademed, draped and cuirassed bust of Glycerius right. Reverse: VICTORI-A AVGG, emperor standing facing, holding long cross and Victory.; foot on a step; R-V//COMOB.

Ex NAC 46 (2 April 2008), 751

A few months after the death of Olybrius, Gundobad, a nephew of Ricimer who took up his uncle’s post as magister militum, proclaimed the comes domesticorum Flavius Glycerius as Western Emperor. Although much of his reign is obscure, Glycerius is known to have prevented Visigothic and Ostrogothic invasions of Italy by diverting them to Gaul through bribery. Despite his protection of Rome and Italy, Leo I refused to recognize him and instead elevated Julius Nepos as the legitimate Western Emperor in AD 474. Nepos mounted an invasion of Italy shortly after Gundobad had left the service of Glycerius to become king of the Burgundians leaving the usurper with little military support. Recognizing that his situation was hopeless, Glycerius immediately surrendered. His life was spared, but he was forced to take holy orders and become the Bishop of Salona.