Roman Empire

Maxentius, Emperor AD 306-312

RIC 181; Depeyrot 16/6; Calicó 5059, Extremely Fine

Rome, AD 307. MAXENTI-VS P F AVG, laureate bust right. Reverse: HERCVLI C-OMITI AVG N, Hercules standing facing right, holding club, bow and lion’s skin; PR.

M. Aurelius Valerius Maxentius was a son of the retired Maximian who who was declared Augustus in Rome in opposition to Severus II in AD 306. In order to shore up his rebellion, Maxentius brought his father out of his unwilling retirement and again bestowed the imperial title on him. Together they defeated Severus II and Galerius, who had attempted an invasion of Italy, and an alliance with Constantine in Gaul, whom they also recognized as an Augustus. The situation began to deteriorate in AD 308 and in AD 312 Constantine invaded Italy. Maxentius was defeated and killed during the famed Battle of the Milvian Bridge, which Constantine later said to have been brought about by the intervention of the Christian God. From this point Constantine ruled the Western Empire unopposed and placed it on the road to becoming a Christian Empire.