Roman Imperial Coins: Their Art & Technique

Translated from the Italian ("L’arte romana nelle monete dell’età imperiale") by Peter Green. Introduction by

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Roman Imperial Coins: Their Art & Technique

Table of contents :
INTRODUCTION
by Ranuccio Bianchi Bandinelli 6
Origins and critical stages 9
Physical reality: the portrait 12
Historical reality: narrative relief 13
Hellenism and "Plebeian" Art 17
The East 19
The new style 24
INTRODUCTION TO THE PLATES
by Laura Breglia 27
THE PLATES
1-3 AUGUSTUS 34-39
4-5 TIBERIUS 40-43
6-9 CALIGULA 44-51
10-15 CLAUDIUS 52-63
16-23 NERO 64-79
24-30 GALBA 80-93
31-32 VESPASIAN 94-97
33 TITUS 98,99
34-41 DOMITIAN 100-115
42-44 NERVA 116-121
45-52 TRAJAN 122-137
53-54 HADRIAN 138-141
55-61 ANTONINUS PIUS 142-155
62-63 MARCUS AURELIUS, LUCIUS VERUS 156-159
64 MARCUS AURELIUS 160, 161
65 COMMODUS 162, 163
66 PERTINAX 164, 165
67-69 SEPTIMIUS SEVERUS 166-171
70-72 SEPTIMIUS SEVERUS, CARACALLA, GETA 172-177
73 MACRINUS 178, 179
74 ELAGABALUS 180, 181
75 PUPIENUS 182, 183
76-78 GORDIAN III 184-189
79 PHILIP I 190, 191
80 VALERIAN I, GALLIENUS 192, 193
81-82 GALLIENUS 194-197
83 POSTUMUS 198, 199
84 PROBUS 200, 201
85 DIOCLETIAN 202, 203
86 MAXIMIAN 204, 205
87 CONSTANTIUS I CHLORUS 206, 207
88 MAXIMUS DAIA 208, 209
89-90 LICINIUS I 210-213
91 LICINIUS II 214,215
92-94 CONSTANTINE I 216-221
95 CONSTANS I 222, 223
96 MAGNENTIUS 224, 225
97 VALENTINIAN I 226, 227
98-99 ARCADIUS 228-231
SELECT BIBLIOGRAPHY 232,233
INDEX OF TYPES 234

Citation preview

R O M AN IMPERIAL COINS

R O M A N IMPERIAL COINS THEIR AR T & TEC H N IQ U E LAURA BREGLIA INTRODUCTION

BY

R A N U C C IO BIANCHI BANDINELLI

F R E D E R I C K A. P R A E G E R , Publishers New York • Washington

T R A N S L A T E D FR O M T H E IT A L IA N L ’arte romana nelle monete dell’ Età Imperiale B Y PETER GREEN

BO O KS TH AT M ATTER Published in the United States oj America in 1968 by Frederick A . Praeger, Inc., Publishers 1 1 1 Fourth A venue, N ew York, N .Y . 10003 © 1968 in M ilan , Italy, by Silvana Editoriale d’Artc, M ilan English translation © 1968 in London, England, by Thames and Hudson Ltd, London A ll rights reserved Library o f Congress Catalog C ard N um ber: 68-8947 Printed in Italy

CONTENTS

IN TR O D U C TIO N by Ranuccio Bianchi Bandinclli

6

Origins and critical stages

9

Physical reality : the portrait

12

Historical reality: narrative relief

13

Hellenism and ‘ Plebeian’ Art

17

The East

19

The new style

24

IN TR O D U C T IO N TO TH E P L A T E S b y Laura B reglia

27

THE PLATES

1-3 4-5 6-9 10-15 16-23 24-30 31,32 33 34-41 42-44 45-52 53,54 55-61 62, 63 64

AUGUSTUS TIBERIUS CALIGULA CLAUDIUS NERO GALBA VESPASIAN TITUS DOMITIAN NERVA TRAJAN HADRIAN ANTONINUS PIUS MARCUS AURELIUS, LUCIUS VERUS MARCUS AURELIUS

3 4 -3 9 40-43 4 4 -51 52 -6 3 6 4 -7 9 80-93 9 4 -9 7 9 8 ,99 1 0 0 - 115 116 -12 1 1 2 2 - 1 37 138 -14 1

65 66 67-69 70-72 73 74 75 76-78 79 80 81,82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89,90 91 92-94 95 96 97 98,99

COMMODUS PERTINAX SEPTIMIUS SEVERUS SEPTIMIUS SEVERUS, CARACALLA, GETA MACRINUS ELAGABALUS PUPIENUS GORDIAN IH PHILIP I VALERIAN I, GALLIENUS GALLIENUS POSTUMUS PROBUS DIOCLETIAN MAXIMIAN CONSTANTIUS ICHLORUS MAXIMUS DAIA LICINIUS I LICINIUS II CONSTANTINE I CONSTANS I MAGNENTIUS VALENTINIAN I ARCADIUS

162, 163 164, 165 166-171 172-177 178, 179

180, 181 182, 183 184-189 190, 191 192, 193 194-197

198, 199 200, 201 202, 203 204, 205 206, 207 208, 209 210-213 2 14 ,215 216-221 222, 223 224, 225 226, 227 228-231

14 2 -155

S E L E C T BIB LIO G R AP H Y

232,233

15 6 -1 5 9 160, 161

I N D E X OF T Y P E S

234,

INTRODUCTION The history o f Roman art has still to be written; and until it is we would do better to speak o f ‘art belonging to the Roman period’ , since its develop­ ment is a complex and widely based phenomenon. The context in which it belongs is that o f the great Hellenistic tradition, which dominated the creative art o f all countries on or near the Mediterranean basin, endowing it with a special quality which we at once recognize as Roman. T o trace its ramifica­ tions against this background is a task o f such com­ plexity, and one so different from the problems involved in studying other ancient civilizations, as to excuse - in part at least - the slow progress made towards unravelling its history. Because o f these difficulties, and for a variety o f other reasons which have largely to do with the particular w ay the study o f ancient civilization has evolved during the past hundred and fifty years, the history o f Rom an art has long remained a too fertile ground for endless platitudes, prejudices both academic and aesthetic, rhetorical dogma (aggravated by Italian or antiItalian chauvinism), and all the usual disabilities which militate against a proper understanding o f the facts o f art. It is enough to make anyone despair, especially anyone determined to climb out o f this slough him self - let alone to convince others that what they learnt at school is not necessarily the truth. There is, obviously, no question o f putting the record straight in this preface, which merely serves to introduce a collection o f coin illustrations. We cannot hope to do more than provide these illustra­ tions with a commentary from which the reader may at least learn the fundamental problems o f art during the Roman period, and form an idea o f how important coins can be as special evidence for the evolution o f that art in its historical context. We should not, however, forget that numismatic art also follows its own line o f development, more or less unaffected by the major artistic trends o f the day. Fig. l. Frieze from a tomb at Amiternum. ‘ Popular’ art o f the first century a d . Chieti Museum. Photo A . G iuliano

But in order to do this, we shall also have to reassess the value o f certain technical terms that have passed into common usage for any discussion o f Roman art. First, however, let us briefly consider the special characteristics o f numismatic evidence. Coins are contemporary artifacts, in common use and pos­ sessed o f an official value; though mass-produced, they nevertheless symbolize the supreme authority o f the government which issues them. M oney’s valid field o f action extends beyond national frontiers; this is particularly true where the vast Rom an Empire is concerned. Within such a radius it represents the central government, which guar­ antees it - and is also guaranteed by it. N o w since such a guarantee possesses universal applicability, the coinage must be easy to recognize; and this means, a fortiori, that any devices it carries have to be self-explanatory. With so little space available, the prime consideration is not formal perfection but the lesser objective o f legibility. O nly the Greeks o f the sixth to fourth centuries b c contrived to mint coins on which the functional symbols also reached matchless heights o f aesthetic achievement. Another problem which arises - one, moreover, where the experts differ considerably amongst themselves - is whether or not an ancient coin-issue was preceded by a large-scale model, and whether this model (supposing it existed) was actually struck up, or a mere drawing-board design. W e maintain that a three-dimensional model, designed to a larger scale than that o f the issue afterwards minted, was almost always employed throughout the Imperial period at Rom e, at least until the great economic crises o f the third century a d . The plastic qualities o f certain compositions (Plates 36-41) and heads (see, e.g., Plates 1, 10, 1$, 3 1, 42, etc.) are hardly compatible with a non-relief model. On the other hand, the reverses o f Plates 2 and 13 could quite easily have been cut with a linear model as guide. In any case the cutting o f the design on the die itself was done by hand, with a burin, to the reduced scale appropriate for the actual coin. (This scale must be remembered when studying the illustrations that 7

follow, all o f which have been photographically enlarged.) For this purpose it must have been essential to check each stage in the die-cutting by taking a w ax impression and matching it up with a model, also o f w ax. N o w such a model must have been approved by the magistrates in charge o f the Treasury, and may well have been sent out to provincial mints as well, along with the new Em­ peror’s portrait. This procedure cannot be confirmed in any detail; but what evidence we have suggests that, for some centuries at any rate, all official like­ nesses were issued from Rome. In some cases, more­ over, there can be no doubt that obverse and reverse were cut by different hands (see Plates 55, $6, and, with reservations, Plates 68,69). In all those fields we have mentioned (clarity o f communication, the close connection with contemporary history, politics and economics) coins constitute a first-class guide to the fundamental trends o f any artistic culture - and, indeed, a more far-reaching one than they were officially intended to provide. The images they em ploy may have been the result o f a conscious programme, but they are also the explicit products o f a highly qualified artisan class. Coins are not ‘pure art’ (it may be doubted whether such a concept ever existed in Roman culture) ; more than most forms they reflect changes o f fashion. They were issued at regular intervals, and the artistic canons which dictated their appearance were, in the first instance, commemorative - or, to borrow a modern term, conditioned by the require­ ments o f propaganda. As an art form, then, coin­ designing remains in perpetual flux, since the con­ flicting counter-claims o f form and content must all too often be resolved, without hesitation, in favour o f the latter. The message is paramount. If, then, there are no absolute formal canons, what do we mean when we talk o f ‘form ’ with reference to them? Our answer would be: that general artistic and cultural form evolved in the area and period which we specifically associate with the development o f Roman art - in other words, Hellenistic naturalism in its latest and most extreme

phase. Between the close o f the fourth century b c and the middle o f the second, artistic form had advanced a long w ay. It now had complete freedom : an easy, unconstrained spatial fluidity o f line, an absolute mastery o f all the technical tricks involved in perspective. (The latter, incidentally, were al­ ready known to Plato, who dismissed them as ‘tricks’ , early on in the fourth century.) But precisely because o f its naturalistic basis, this formal pattern always remained consistently faithful to the laws o f true proportion between the various subjects and their subordinate parts, thus preserving the major principle o f overall organic harmony in the image presented. (I use ‘organic harm ony’ as a convenient term to denote that all-embracing formal symmetry found in every living organism, whether animal or vegetable, where even the most minute element is visibly and harmoniously linked with the rest.) Organic harmony is a fundamental and essential element in the naturalistic approach to art, and thus permeates the entire Hellenistic tradition : it persists as an active agent long after the springs from which Hellenism derived its formal vitality had run dry. Throughout the centuries until our own times or at least until the Impressionist revolution, which during the last thirty years o f the nineteenth century ushered in our present approach to art - these principles o f naturalism and organic harmony, first established during the Hellenistic era, continued to flourish as an unquestioned element in the main­ stream o f Europe’s art and culture. Elsewhere I have tried to demonstrate the process by which this organic harmony, and with it the concept (or prejudiced dogma, if you prefer) o f naturalism, as well as all its ancillary clutter o f rules relating to proportion and perspective, came to be finally abandoned. I cannot repeat here all my previous arguments; suffice it to say that this ‘ju m p ’ in the concept o f form cannot take place until a new element has entered and dominated artistic creativ­ ity: a frankly irrational element. This element is, clearly, a reflection o f some new orientation in the culture, and thus in the society as

a whole, o f the day. H owever, even granted that this be so, we shall not attempt to isolate the under­ lying causes o f such a change. It will be enough, for our purposes, to state that our researches have led us to recognize the first explicit signs o f this new out­ look in works produced during the reign o f C oinmodus (a d 180-92). It was then that the irrational first became a basic and influential factor in figurative art, destroying that perfect balance between reason and intuition which had been typical o f the Hellenic creative tradition; and henceforward it was to remain inseparable from Western artistic culture. It marked the first step in a revolution which was to overthrow the artistic tradition inherited from antiquity, and which heralded the change-over (accomplished during a crisis that shook the entire structure o f Western civilization) to Byzantine and Medieval art. Good examples o f naturalistic representation, which retain the principle o f organic harmony in full (even after large-scale magnification) are pro­ vided by Plates 16, 2 1, 22, 30, 34 and 57. Loss o f organic harmony can be detected in the figures on Plates 67 and 7 1, and reaches its peak in those on Plates 82 and 97. But i f we take a good look at the portrait o f Antoninus Pius (Plate 60), or that o f Lucius Verus (Plate 62), or Com m odus (Plate 65), we see that the structure o f the features - cheeks, forehead, nose, neck - has degenerated into limp, inert planes, form without substance, framed by the decorative motifs o f hair and beard. These give the portrait a spurious, contrived vitality far removed from the dynamic relief-work, vibrant with realism, which distinguishes the portraits o f Matidia (Plate 52) or Hadrian (Plate 53). Yet even on the earlier coin o f Antoninus Pius shown on Plate 55, though the technique remains fully naturalistic, there is nevertheless a weakening o f tension in the organic harmony. This is true not only o f the obverse but also o f the impressionistic reverse (Plate 56) though the latter is still far more ‘organic’ than the reverse o f Plate 6 1, in which the portrait’s head no longer appears to have any real connection with its

body, and there is no torso beneath the folds o f the toga, each o f which stand out independently, dis­ tinct from the overall structure. Such drapery, only alive insofar as it contrasts with the inert raised mass on which it is traced, first appears at Rom e on monumental bas-reliefs during the reign o f C oinmodus, and later, in a more pronounced form, during that o f Septimius Severus, early in the third century. In Asia M inor - at Ephesus, for instance the practice occurs as early as Hadrian’s day, and also on the large sculptured frieze in honour o f Lucius Verus (Fig. 3). It is, then, clear from the coinage that even before Com modus (with Antoninus Pius we are between 138 and 16 1, while Lucius Verus’s dates are 16 1-9 ) certain signs o f change had already begun to appear; and these signs lead us, in a consistent and unbroken line o f development, to the portrait-dies cut during Gallienus’s reign, about the middle o f the third century (Plates 79-81). B y Diocletian’s reign, at the end o f the century (Plate 85), the last trace o f Hellenistic elegance has vanished. A new concept o f art now makes its appearance.

Origins and critical stages There are tw o basic turning-points in the history o f art in the Roman period. The first is the evolution o f an artistic taste identifiable by certain elements in the dominant Hellenistic tradition, this being the creative culture from which Rom an art was born. The second is that chronologically determinable break-away point when the fundamental principles on which this same Hellenistic tradition rested were reviewed and thereafter replaced by new artistic concepts o f a quite different nature, which at times, indeed, stood in direct variance with the general spirit o f the age. The first o f these turning-points shows us the birth o f Roman art; in the second we see the appearance o f that ‘Late Antique’ spirit to which can be traced back the roots o f Byzantine art, indeed, o f the whole Europe medieval tradition (cf. Plates 84, 90, 95, 97). Just how, when, and in ~umstances these tw o historical changes omplished still 9

remains to be discovered, and no detailed account o f them has as yet been written. M any o f the general­ izations with which it was once thought they could be explained are demonstrably invalid. Even their isolation as crucial points for unravelling the history o f art in the Roman period is a comparatively recent phenomenon. It follows that the least crumb o f factual evidence which can be adduced for the better understanding o f these two moments in time will possess all the interest and excitement o f a new discovery. Let us see, therefore, what sort o f factual evidence these representations on coins offer us. (Their nature and significance in respect o f the subjects they portray, and the various historical occasions which necessitated their issue, may be sought in the ex­ planatory text to be found on the obverse o f every coin.) N o direct light is shed by them on the first o f our major problems - that is, the w ay in which Roman art as such originally came into being - since the present collection begins in the time o f Augustus, with a coin struck between 20 and 15 b c (Plate 1), probably at a Spanish mint. For at least a century before this, something we can isolate as a recogniz­ ably Roman quality had been visible, becoming more pronounced as time went on, a new element permeating all Italy’s local and provincial variations on the Hellenistic tradition. These included the almost pure Hellenism o f Sicily and Magna Graecia ; Cam pania’s tensely balanced compromise between Hellenistic sophistication and the crude OscoSamnite style; and the all but obsolete culture o f the once-flourishing Etruscans, whose language and traditions, form erly o f unequalled vigour and com­ plexity, were now wholly eclipsed by those o f Rome. (Octavian - not yet Augustus, but already coldly determined to achieve absolute mastery o f the State - had, with the massacres at Modena and Perugia, dealt a mortal blow to the Italian and Etruscan ruling classes’ hopes o f preserving even a partial auton­ omy.) So though the coins assembled here do not permit us to trace the first beginnings o f true Roman art, we can nevertheless detect in them some hint o f 10

its supposed original characteristics, latterly re­ inforced (Plates i, 3, 4, 7) by a vigorous objective naturalism which offset the Hellenistic tradition’s, at times slightly theatrical, lyric influence. Long before Rom e possessed a great empire, she had reached a cultural level which produced a steady demand for works o f art. This demand she satisfied for centuries with the artistic output o f her immediate neighbours. Etruscans, Campanians, Ap­ ulians, the Greeks o f Taranto and Syracuse - all found a ready market among Rom e’s ever-expand­ ing population. Then, towards the end o f the third century b c , the city began to acquire objets d'art that were not specifically produced for Roman pur­ chasers, but had been captured as booty during various campaigns. It was no longer a matter o f works turned out by more or less skilled craftsmen; this loot included masterpieces by the great artists o f classical and Hellenistic Greece. Such works opened up a hitherto unknown w orld; for the first time Romans began to talk o f trends and schools and to compare the achievements o f various artists. Rome, or at least an intellectual Roman élite, suddenly dis­ covered formal artistic values, though this move­ ment was for long regarded as suspect by con­ servative reactionaries such as Cato. N or was it long before those with a practical bent made these formal values pay o ff commercially. There now began a policy o f importing, wholesale, works belonging to every period o f Greek art. Such a chaotic accumula­ tion o f styles could and did produce nothing except an ultra-eclectic taste which mixed in something o f everything. And when, after a while, the supply o f originals ran out, would-be purchasers took to ordering copies. This established a flourishing business for skilled craftsmen in Athens, Rom e and elsewhere. Indeed, nine out o f ten examples o f socalled ‘Greek sculpture’ displayed for our admiration today in the museums o f Western Europe are the work o f these copyists. Fig. 2. Detail o f reliej-w ork, Trajan’s Column (c. a d 1 0 7 - 1 3 ) . Rome. Photo Luce

All this forms only one aspect o f Rom e’s artistic achievement, and o f the preferences displayed by her patrician and senatorial classes, who also summoned Greek artists to Rom e to carry out special commis­ sions for them. Such commissions, moreover - ex­ cept for glassware and silverware, or the products o f thegoldsmith’ sorjew eller’sarts-w ereal ways framed with one strongly felt end in view : the glorification o f the client’s ancestors or political party, or indeed o f the client himself. This applied especially to honorific or funerary portraits, to monuments commemorating some special achievement (such as public works, whether promised or carried out), and to pictures which portrayed anything from the successive stages in a victorious campaign o f military conquest to such lesser themes as especially muni­ ficent gladiatorial games, chariot races, or wildbeast hunts involving foreign animals imported, at vast expense, for the Roman arena. These were for the most part quite new themes, which Hellenistic art had either not dealt with at all or else had treated very tentatively - and almost never with that need to fix the event clearly in time which emerges as the Roman client’s prime requirement. An econom y so poor, in the material sense, as that o f early Rome and Italy was bound to produce, on the one hand, ad­ miration for the vast wealth o f the few who had it, and on the other, a conscious display o f this wealth as a symbol o f power. O ver a certain range o f sub­ jects - representations o f the gods (see Plates 5, 12, 23, 28, 32, 35), or o f myths and legends, portraits, decorations for murals and rich tapestries in private houses - the Hellenistic tradition could continue to be exploited through copies, imitations, and varia­ tions, though these grew progressively flabbier and more remote from their original sources o f inspira­ tion (see Plates 30, 46, 47, 56, 69). But all these other unprecedented requirements and themes demanded fresh representative techniques, a new schematic approach to narrative art, and, inevitably, the crea­ tion o f a new formal language. This is Roman art, whether those who produced it happened to be Greek, Italian, or Etruscan. 12

Physical reality : the portrait It is com monly claimed that the principal achieve­ ment o f Roman art was the portrait. This is not quite true. The splendid series o f portraits produced during the Roman period are no more than a con­ tinuation, in a different context and fulfilling differ­ ent requirements, o f the great Hellenistic tradition o f portraiture, which already embodied all the necessary formal requirements. The truth o f the matter is that hardly any original Greek portraits have been preserved: honorific statues were nor­ m ally cast in bronze, and during the Middle Ages an acute shortage o f metals made bronze a muchcoveted commodity. Thus the vast majority o f so-called ‘Greek portraits’ are third-rate commercial Roman copies. Where the Roman portrait-bust really differs from its Greek predecessors is in its widespread popularity and its specifically private character. This last characteristic is bound up with the individual traditionalism o f the great patrician families, which preserved ancestral portraits from every branch o f their line. For a long time, too, they alone had the right to display such likenesses; the result was that the portrait, in particular the funerary bust, remained a symbol o f ennoblement (or, some­ times, o f mere aspirations towards the nobility). The widespread diffusion o f portraiture also left its mark on the perennially celebratory function o f Roman art, whether private or State-promoted. Am ong the coins assembled in this book we have various examples o f portraiture in the HellenisticRoman tradition. There is the special emphasis on objective naturalism which marks the Julio-C laudian period (Plates 1, 3, 4, 7). There is the revival o f the Hellenistic dynasties’ somewhat theatrical fash­ ions in portraiture which begins with Claudius (Plate 10) and develops further under Nero (Plates 16 -23, the actual-size reproductions), whose issues carrying the juxtaposed heads o f the Emperor and his mother (Plate 18) recall in detail those minted by the Ptolemies at Alexandria. Hadrian’s reign was marked by a conscious return to pure Hellenistic models (Plate 53). What comes as a new and

specifically Roman development, a variation on the royal Hellenistic portrait, is the Imperial portrait as such (Plates 34, 42): that is, the presentation o f the Princeps as Imperator, i.e. as a military commander who, even in the exercise o f his civil functions, retains the bearing o f a general, yet (eschewing Hellenistic theatricality, and unlike his later Imperial successors) remains firmly planted in the civil and human sphere, with no hint o f divine predestina­ tion, o f some sanctified status setting him apart from other men. The two coins o f Galba on Plates 25 and 27 show a remarkable swing from the realistic family or funerary portrait to the new official, honorific con­ cept o f the Imperator. That on Plate 29, which is almost certainly to be dated after Galba’s death, shows a characteristic Imperator- style portrait, sim­ ilar in some respects to the representation o f Galba’s successor Vespasian (but note the stylized treatment o f the hair, which looks forward to the sculpture produced during the first half o f the third century). In the case o f Vespasian him self we have similarly characterized portrait-busts both o f the private and realistic school (e.g. in the Glyptothek N y Carlsberg, Copenhagen) and o f the official type, with its stern nobility o f feature (Museo Nazionale, Rome). The Imperator- type portrait gradually evolved into a recognizable and conventional type; a good example included here (Plate 84) is the representa­ tion o f Probus. The visored helmet encircled by the radiate crown, the clumsily repetitive decoration o f the cuirass, the aw kward w ay in which Probus carries his spear on his shoulder, like a soldier on the march, rather than using it as a support according to the convention which Lysippus devised for Alexander, the hypertrophy o f the neck (almost as though it were enclosed in a gorget) - all these details, in their rhetorical emphasis on a m otif designed to express physical vigour, carry the same unavoidable implication. This is no longer an authentic living concept, but a mere artificial hark­ ing back to the past, such as we find during the Renaissance. This makes it clear that by now the

ancient tradition exists only as a symbol, and no longer plays any active part in contemporary life.

Historical reality : narrative relief Roman art’s most genuine innovation is not the portrait, but rather the historical relief, on which are portrayed and narrated the exploits, whether civil or military, o f public figures such as consuls, military commanders, Emperors, or even modest provincial magistrates. Coins, too - for the first time in numismatic history - similarly express this some­ what specialized theme (Plates 2, 9, 20-22, 24, 26, 3 6 -4 1,4 3 , 45, 48, 50, 5 1, 54, 59, 7 1 ,7 2 and 78). The last o f these, Plate 78, is a coin issued by Gordian III, commemorating the crossing o f the Hellespont during the war against the Persians (Parthians), and was probably struck in 242. From now on - and this, too, is an important sign o f change - the historical relief, which to begin with had often been, more properly speaking, o f a commemorative nature (Plates 24, 5 1, 59, 72), is gradually replaced by symbolic representations. So here too, in yet another branch o f art, we have evidence for chang­ ing attitudes, for a retreat from concrete reality to symbolism, from narrative to image. The coinage issued by Domitian shows a sudden marked efflorescence o f historical relief-work (Plates 36-41) ; an interesting point, since there is still much disagreement concerning the date and artistic development o f some large-scale historical reliefs (e.g. the ‘Chancellery Panels’ and the reliefs on the Arch o f Titus). Coins confirm the existence, as early as Dom itian’ s reign (a d 81-96), o f an already highly advanced tradition o f historical relief-work. Furthermore, such a conclusion can be used to shed light on the development, during the subsequent reign o fT rajan (a d 9 8 -117 ), o f a new advance in this field. Under the influence o f some great artistic personality - as evinced by the reliefs on Trajan’s Colum n (Fig. 2) and the great frieze, now broken up and added piecemeal to the Arch o f Constantine - the art o f the Roman period reached its highest peak, an achievement which must surely rank •3

among the greatest o f all antiquity. We have no means o f knowing who this great artist may have been. W e can call him ‘Trajan’s official masterartist’ , or tentatively identify him as Apollodorus o f Damascus, the Em peror’s talented engineer-cumarchitect; but in either case the pattern o f his artistic evolution continues to elude us. A more exact knowledge o f the art o f Dom itian’s day might begin to suggest an answer to this question. If we glance briefly at the examples o f ‘historical relief-work’ offered by the coins in this collection, the maturity achieved under Domitian will become more immediately apparent. Plate 3, a coin struck by Augustus, carried a device which probably com­ memorates the restoration o f the Via Flaminia (and which also recalls his silver denarii) ; above a viaduct we see a double arch, hung with the beaks o f cap­ tured ships, and over this again a chariot, with a winged Victory behind the charioteer. Bearing in mind the small size o f the final image (the coin is less than 2 cm. in diameter) the craftsman concen­ trated all his attention on achieveing clarity o f detail, and for this purpose the Victory chariot was the most important element. The arch, though proportionally reduced, is still quite recognizable; the viaduct only needed to be sketched in. This is w hy the artist had recourse to the most convenient and conventional proportions, rather than trying for realism - something which always tends to happen when the end in view is narrative and docu­ mentary rather than aesthetic, and which is a regular feature o f ‘popular art’ . It does not indicate lack o f skill or provincialism so much as the use o f an accepted convention o f the day. This blocking-out technique, almost like a pastel artist’s close pointil­ lisme, is in fact achieved by rapid and summary work with an engraving-tool : it aims to do no more than isolate in summary relief just as much as will make the objects represented recognizable; though per­ haps, when we recall their actual dimensions, ‘obvious’ would be a better word. But this tech­ nique undoubtedly bears witness to a decrease in feeling for harmony o f composition and overall '4

formal symmetry. Thus we see the two dominant characteristics o f late antiquity - emphasis on des­ cription rather than form, and the loss o f organic harmony - already present in Roman art as early as the Augustan era, which (it is worth remember­ ing) was the period during which the official trend towards classicism reached its stately apogee. This should give us food for thought. Similar considera­ tions might well apply to Plate 13, a coin o f Claudius issued in A D 4 1. This has a design meant to represent a military camp: the central and most emphatic position is given to the shrine containing the stand­ ards o f the legion, and everything else is sub­ ordinated to it - a mere perfunctory sketch, linear, and depthless, where perspective has been deliber­ ately falsified in order to achieve emphasis. The coin shown in Plates 8 and 9 belongs to Caligula’s reign, but was also issued in the same year, 4 1. It suggests a compromise between the spontaneous characteristics o f narrative relief and the earlier Hellenistic tradition. The obverse, with its seated Pietas, has a fluid line and shows great skill in the variation o f chiaroscuro ; Hellenistic influence here is pure and undiluted. The reverse shows a sacrificial scene, a typically Roman motif, in which the characteristic rough finish o f Italian art (not to mention w rongly proportioned figures) blends with a formal technique barely distinguishable from that o f Greek coinage, as can be seen in the representation o f the bull. A marked advance in achievement comes with the coinage struck under Nero. Here the two main requirements, formal balance and narrative em­ phasis, are successfully combined for the first time. In Rom e at least, Roman representationalism had triumphed over the slowly assimilated tradition o f neo-Attic classicism, and furnished the essential basis for a new, specifically Roman style. Consider, for instance, the harmonious and relaxed compositions Fig. 3. Detail from monumental frieze in honour o f Lucius Verus at Ephesus (c. a d 16 3 -7 0 ). Vienna, Kunsthistorisches Museum. Photo the Museum

o f Plates 2 1 and 22, and even o f Plate 19, in which the topographical portrayal o f the harbour is accom­ plished by very different means from that o f the Praetorian camp displayed on Claudius’s coin (Plate 13). Nevertheless this design from N ero’s reign is not entirely consistent in its technique. It employs perspective (the statue o f Neptune in the distance, the personified River Tiber in the foreground) ; the life-like portrayal o f rigging, and the loading and unloading o f cargoes, all within a diameter o f less than 36 mm., recall certain impressionist-style, white-ground murals in the Casa della Farnesina, executed during the Augustan period. But at the same time neither the perspective nor the design o f this composition can be called naturalistic. The naturalistic details form additions to a conventional, indeed a symbolic, composition, such as was to become still more fashionable as time went on, and which even then was fairly common in art at the ‘popular’ level. On the coin on Plate 2 1, indeed, the language o f symbolism is expressed with a wealth o f highly skilled relief technique which admirably fills the field; the same is true, in its own w ay, o f Plate 17. On Plate 22 the coin, struck between a d 69 and 70, shows an adlocutio, that is, the address given by the Imperator to his troops. This scene has several noteworthy features. The picture belongs to the long established traditions o f the Roman historical relief, in which the images are presented in profile, m oving separately through a space parallel to the view er’s eyes: the figures, that is, move either from right to left or left to right. One o f the soldiers is seen here from behind; and the fact that he is halfturned towards the figure o f the speaker means that his backward-facing stance introduces a new spatial dimension into the composition as a whole. He is m oving aw ay from the viewer into the background, within the same spatial orbit as that surrounding the viewer himself. This too foreshadows the con­ ventions employed at Ephesus under the early Antonines, and more fully developed at Rom e from the time o f Commodus. It indicates a movement 16

away from Hellenistic concepts towards the spatial treatment current in late antiquity. We should also take note o f the emblems placed in the background as a purely decorative element, without any reference to the figures: this convention had a long history in Greek art. It goes back to the beginning o f the Hellenistic period, and can be seen in the famous ‘Battle o f Issus’ picture (mosaic copy from the House o f the Faun in Pompeii, now in the Museo Nazionale, Naples). Observe, for instance, the grotesque mask on the shield o f the last soldier to the right o f the picture, a fantastic touch which strikes us as unnecessary to the central theme. Even some details relevant to this theme are highly puzzling. Consider the perfunctory sketch o f a horse which is placed between the two right-hand figures. All it succeeds in doing is to crowd the composition and make it less clear than it otherwise might have been; but obviously it formed an essential element in the stylized representation o f an adlocutio (cf. also Plate 50). Such historical reliefs, in fact, adhere to predetermined themes and patterns. The only per­ missible occasion for altering them is when some chance occurs to give greater emphasis and clarity to a specific historical event - as, for instance, when Trajan’s Colum n was reassembled in a fresh context. Yet what clearly emerges from the comparison is the superiority o f composition in work done during Domitian’s reign (examples from Plate 36 on­ wards). On these coins the figures enjoy complete and unconstrained freedom o f spatial movement. There is also remarkable mastery o f design, com­ bined with a vivid relief technique, a way o f produc­ ing a bright, broken, palpitating chiaroscuro that is typical o f art under the Flavians, and which un­ doubtedly presupposes the existence o f a large-scale original model for the final coin-die. The variations on identical themes (see Plates 39 and 40) testify to the fertile artistic inspiration o f the day. We may note, too, the w ay in which the half-conscious tendency to portray the Imperator as a larger-thanhuman figure (though not, as yet, in accordance with any firmly established ideological concept) is

now to some extent camouflaged by cunning use o f perspective: see Plate 41 and also 54. Such a wealth o f artistic resource makes one wonder at the poverty o f imagery which Trajan’s coins reveal, especially since it was then that historical reliefwork reached its highest peak o f expression. Clearly the currency was not affected by that major advance o f which Trajan’s ‘official masterartist’ gave such ample promise. Plate 45 reveals details o f style scarcely less ‘popular’ than those displayed by the analogous coin o f Nerva on Plate 43; yet even much later, when work on Trajan’s spiral Colum n was already begun (Plate 48) or finished (Plate 50), the coin-dies still show no improvement on those produced under Domitian. On the contrary, the relief-work remains flat and sketchy, despite a certain indisputable liveliness and skill in composition. At the same time, the portrait o f Trajan on the obverse o f all these coins is invari­ ably o f the highest quality. It was, beyond a doubt, made directly from a full-relief model, which achieved a perfect fusion between individual por­ traiture and the lofty stylization appropriate to an Imperator. Consider the design o f Plate 5 1, in which the towering central figure o f the Imperator dominates the lesser symbolical entities at his feet. Yet this too foreshadows characteristics that appear in such late designs as that o f Plate 9$, a coin issued by Constans about the mid-fourth century. Such anticipations o f late antiquity, in both content and style, crop up again and again throughout the history o f Roman art ; they reveal, with some clarity, just what the fundamental inclinations o f this culture were, and provide a most convincing argu­ ment that its later developments - including its final break with the Hellenistic tradition - were not (as is so often and so hastily assumed) due to outside formal influences.

Hellenism and ‘Plebeian’ A rt Side by side with the expression o f this typically Roman historical motif, we still find a steady output

in an eclectic Hellenistic style. It is preferably orientated - at least during the first two centuries o f the Empire - towards imitations o f the great classical Greek tradition, or the art evolved under the patronage o f various Hellenistic monarchs, in par­ ticular Attalus o f Pergamum (who willed his kingdom to the Roman people on his death), and the Ptolemies o f Alexandria in Egypt. Every Roman citizen liked to feel that he was, in some sense, both the heir to these kingdoms and the destined up­ holder o f their traditions. The wealthier houses in Pompeii and Herculaneum bear eloquent testimony to this belief. The murals decorating them portray great coilstered courtyards, elaborate examples o f trompe-l'oeil architectural perspective, copies o f famous pictures - all o f which had been genuine features o f the Hellenistic palaces. Copies or imitations o f Greek paintings and sculp­ tural groups, mythological pictures and honorific monuments, were forms o f art naturally associated with the political ruling class; the Senatorial and, later, Imperial families. But side by side with free­ born plebeians, and spreading ever wider as time went on, a new class o f lesser citizens had arisen within the fabric o f Roman society. This class o f parvenus was drawn from the liberti, or freedmen, who had either been slaves themselves, or else were the sons o f slaves. They formed a notably active, productive group, the members o f which often acquired great wealth, generally through commerce (and in many cases by acting as their master’s agent). In the course o f time freedmen came to fill the majority o f minor public offices, both administrative and financial. In the time o f Augustus even the traditional ban on marriages between liberti and free-born persons applied only to those o f Senatorial rank (though it took a succession o f barbarian Emperors to abolish it completely). O ver such matters as political rights and the laws o f inheritance, too, by the end o f the Republic - and even more during the early years o f the Empire - freedmen eventually became indistinguishable from the plebe­ ian class as a whole. These wealthy arrivistes quite 7

understandably concentrated all their pride and ambition on commemorating, in public and prefer­ ably permanent form, their rise from slavery to free­ dom, riches, and the dignity o f public office. They loved to build showy tombs for themselves during their own lifetime, designed to show o ff their wealth and civic status to the best possible advantage through representations o f the lavish games they gave, or dignified portraits o f themselves as public magistrates enthroned on the dais where they performed their official duties, or even by the sheer magnificence o f their obsequies. W e have a vivid literary tribute to this kind o f mentality in Chapter L X X I o f Petronius’s Satyricon , where the freedman Trim alchio describes his own projected tomb. But we also possess the actual remains o f such sepulchres. They testify (Fig. i) to an artistic tradi­ tion which displays marked differences from that described above, in either o f its two main forms. This separate tradition has been labelled ‘plebeian’ , a term we have already employed in the course o f our introduction. The label is, however, an ambiguous one, since we have grown accustomed to applying it to any craft artifact with folk-art connotations which, in addition to primitive motifs o f pattern and design, seems to show residual traces o f sophisticated, i f déclassé , art-forms. Here we have to do with some­ thing quite different; and therefore it seems prefer­ able to describe it as the ‘plebeian’ element in Roman art. What we are dealing with is a type o f artistic production that largely embodies and continues the traditions o f pre-Roman art : a mode o f expression which, despite local variations, remained funda­ mentally constant between the third and first centuries b c over an area stretching from Apulia through Campania and Latium to Etruria, and which constitutes the provincial aspect o f Hellenism. As such it has a certain awkwardness, and is lacking in sophisticated charm; its normal emphasis tends to be on narrative clarity rather than correctness or attractiveness o f form, at times exclusively so. This narrative clarity makes it an admirable vehicle for the glorification both o f individuals who are to be

honoured, and o f events that one wishes to com­ memorate. In this respect the ‘plebeian’ tradition overlaps with genuinely ‘popular’ types o f artistic expression : one thinks, for example, o f the style adopted for the small ex-voto pictures which grateful worshippers still hang up in Catholic shrines to this day. In order to emphasize some particular incident, or the main protagonist, these artists do not hesitate to break the rules o f proportion, enlarging one object at the expense o f the rest, or one figure (or part o f a figure) beyond the scale adopted for those surrounding it. They avoid foreshortening o f perspective, which is liable to make a scene hard to understand, and prefer to represent each object in its most explicit and immediately recognizable dimensions and context. They therefore go back to the old device o f crowd­ ing all their subjects in a line, on one level and fullface, as in archaic art. Yet this is neither an archaic survival, nor latter-day archaizing. The full-face technique here adopted has very different implica­ tions from that o f the archaic period, when it was employed, often in a highly sophisticated way, to create a style - that is, to develop a series o f represent­ ational conventions as a means o f mastering artistic form, just as words and speech are the chosen medium for giving shape to what requires verbal expression, and making it comprehensible. In contrast to genuine popular art, this ‘plebeian’ tradition never achieves a real style o f its own. Its exponents always fall back on improvisation to keep themselves properly aligned, from one moment to the next, with the most immediate and contingential aspects o f sophisticated reality - though still ready, at a pinch, to revive the more diffuse mannerisms o f ‘pure’ Hellenism i f they can serve some useful purpose. If we are to gain a complete understanding o f this local artistic tradition (which in one sense could be regarded as the most obviously Roman o f them all), we must bear in mind just what it had behind it. While Hellenistic art was backed by a centuries-old and highly developed formal tradition, the Italian

peninsula belonged in part to that area o f Europe which still retained the elementary type o f artistic self-expression associated with the La Tene culture, based for the most part on linear, non-figurative ornamental motifs. Even though the Early Iron A ge Villanovan culture shared in the figurative tendencies common to the Danubian-Illyrian-Balkan area, Italian art remained, essentially, uneasy with Greek naturalism and anthropomorphism, and this basic trait re­ appears whenever a Hellenistic pattern is lacking. So there is a hidden element o f insincerity and un­ certainty underlying the ‘plebeian’ tradition o f Roman art. For all these reasons, it must not be regarded as a popular art which has absorbed and vulgarized the achievements o f Hellenism, but rather as a genuine and autonomous movement in its own right, subject to independent development. We have already studied some coins ( P la t e s v ^ jj, 43, 62) which show its influence, and earlier instances could be adduced from the oldest known Republican currency. There is, for example, the R om anoCampanian gold piece commemorating the con­ clusion o f a treaty, as well as the reverses o f denarii issued by Ti. Veturius (102-92 b c ) and C. Sulpicius (94-91 b c ), which portray similar themes (Babelon, Voi. II, p. 535, no. 1 ; p. 471, no. 1). But plebeian art could find no direct place in a field such as coin­ designing, since the currency was issued either by the Senate or the Emperor - not, that is, until at long last, with the establishment o f the Tetrarchy (end o f the third century), the plebeian class o f farmers and soldiers became the very head and backbone o f the State.

The East Nevertheless, what survived from the Hellenistic tradition bore a completely different appearance in the other cultural centres o f the Eastern Mediterran­ ean. Though these were now Romanized for

Fig. 4. Group o f the Tetrarchs, in red porphyry ( a d 3 0 3 -5 ) . Venice, S. Marco. Photo German Archaeological Institute

administrative purposes, they remained rooted in a wide variety o f cultural traditions: we may instance Athens, Alexandria, the coastal cities o f Asia M inor, and such places as Ephesus, Antioch, Aphrodisias, or Heliopolis. In these areas the remnants o f Hellen­ istic naturalism remained more or less active and influential until the Byzantine period. This state­ ment, which depends on factual observation and evidence now generally confirmed and accepted, may appear inconsistent with the current practice o f em ploying the term ‘ Oriental’ or ‘ Oriental influ­ ence’ to explain certain aspects o f late Roman art, aspects that stand in sharp contrast to the formal tradition o f Hellenistic naturalism. W e have already attempted to clarify, within the context o f Roman awareness and experience, the precise meaning o f terms such as ‘official’ or ‘high’ Hellenistic art, and to distinguish between the epithets ‘popular’ and ‘plebeian’ . It now remains to seek a less vague definition for phrases such as ‘ Oriental influence’ and ‘barbarian influence’ . The reasons adduced for the break in artistic con­ tinuity, and the abandonment o f naturalistic form both o f which seem to us an integral stage in the development o f art during the Rom an period - have always been linked with that old stand-by, foreign influence. From the very beginning it was axiomatic that the change took place as a result o f the ‘deca­ dence’ , a label which was taken to cover the whole period o f late antiquity from the third century onwards (Late Empire). Am id this general atmos­ phere o f decadence, artists, it was said, reached a point at which they were no longer capable o f achieving mastery over their material. This belief was so firm ly held that histories o f Roman art usually went no further than the close o f the second century. Such a view got a new lease o f life as lately as 1952, with the appearance o f Bernard Berenson’s book on the Arch o f Constantine. N o w Berenson, far from being a classically oriented archaeologist, Fig. 5. D etail from the fr ie z e on the Arch o f Constantine, Rom e ( a d 3 1 2 - 1 5 ) . Photo German Archaeological Institute

was a professional art-historian; it is extraordinary that a man with his training should fail to realize that the reliefs on the Arch, executed between 312 and 315 , began a whole new movement o f repre­ sentational art, which lasted for over seven hundred years. Berenson was, however, a great connoisseur and not an historian. On the other hand, the scholars o f the Vienna School, about the turn o f the century, unanimously agreed that this was a new movement, which em­ bodied a completely fresh attitude. But though they described this attitude, and accepted its existence as a fact, they did not ask themselves how and w hy such a change came about. From the Quattrocento onwards, artists and art-historians had gone into the question very thoroughly, and were convinced that the answer lay in the barbarian invasions and the new concept o f the world brought about by Christianity. As far as the barbarian invasions are concerned, the fact o f the matter is that when the break with the old tradition took place, they were still a thing o f the future. Even when suggesting ‘barbarian influences’ , it is advisable to proceed with caution. H ow , for example, are we to account for the fact that one o f the most ‘classical’ coins issued during the third century - a first-class example of detailed relief-work - was struck at the Lugdunum (Lyons) mint, under the aegis o f Postumus, Emperor o f Gaul, Spain and Britain, and resident at Treviri? It would be an odd thing i f ‘barbarian influences’ were stronger at Rom e than at Lyons, even granting that Postumus’s currency may have had a political object o f respectability. In point o f fact we would do well to remember that it was the ‘plebeian’ tradition o f Roman art (utilized by settlers and soldiers no less than by minor provincial magistrates) which formed the basis of that art as practised in the European provinces such as Gaul, Spain, Illyria, or Pannonia. On this stock each area grafted its own crude, local characteristics to produce a Romanized hybrid. In this w ay, during the brief upsurge o f ‘plebeian’ influence in official Imperial art - that is, between the reforms o f D io­ 21

cletian (284-305) and the first years o f Constantine’s reign, before he assumed the monarchy - the con­ solidation o f such a trend could be mistaken for an influx o f barbarian models. But such a theory has no conceivable historical justification to support it. Thus the enthroned Jupiter on the reverse o f the coin shown in Plate 90 might, on these terms, be regarded as ‘barbaric’ ; but in fact it does bear close resemblance to the silver bust o f Jupiter Poeninus in the Aosta Museum, while the obverse is quite obviously an imitation o f the currency struck by Maxentius, between 306 and 312 . As for Christianity, this was hardly the prime cause behind the collapse o f Greek rationalism and the drift towards the irrational - merely one among many factors which helped to bring such a state of affairs about. In this sense it can be bracketed with all the other mystery cults and philosophical creeds which preached redemption and the denial o f this world, and which arose when they did as a kind o f spiritual superstructure above the new social and economic foundations o f society. The reason Christ­ ianity outstripped them all was that its adherents had the sense to build up a strong, efficient organization, and to infiltrate the class-structure at every level. Rival movements, apart from the cult o f SolMithras, were restricted to intellectual minority groups, without any real social power. The revolu­ tionary drive which fired Christianity ended, in one sense, with its final victory : that is, its acceptance by the Emperor Constantine. From then, it is true, the new creed began to leave its mark on the State; but the final break with Hellenistic form is already visible in works o f art produced a generation earlier. As far as our problem goes, we should bear in mind that the Christian movement had become fully individualized - and was, indeed, at the height o f its popularity - as early as Com modus. W e can see this from the adventures o f Callistus, a slave w ho worked as a banker’s agent. Through the intercession o f Com m odus’s mistress, herself a Christian, he was set free, and in due course became a great Pope (Callistus I, a d 219-23). 22

Nevertheless, the task o f relating this change o f direction in art to the profound social, economic, and ideological transformation that was brought about by the organizational crisis within the Empire has never been systematically undertaken by histor­ ians o f art. They prefer to fall back on conveniently over-simplified explanations, whether these be based on racial theories or disguised under the handy i f evasive heading o f ‘influences’ . It does not seem to occur to them that for one art-form to influence another demands much more than mere contact between them; that nothing will happen unless the recipient culture is already actively seeking for new answers along the same lines as those the ‘ invader’ has already achieved. Consequently, the historical problem is not so much concerned with the discovery and description o f such influences per se, as with the interpretation o f those antecedent causes and motives that made them first possible. One must proceed from an analysis o f the situation immediately before the influence took hold. It did look, however, as though the ‘Oriental influence’ theory had received irrefutable confirma­ tion from the 1921 archaeological expedition to Doura-Europos (a fortified caravan city and Roman frontier post on the Euphrates, destroyed in 256). During this excavation a number o f wall-paintings and reliefs were found which, long before the accepted date - some, indeed, as early as the first or second century - already displayed various char­ acteristics typical o f Late Antique art (i.e. o f the break with the Hellenistic tradition) and subse­ quently o f the Byzantine movement. These in­ cluded frontal presentation, paratactic composition devoid o f perspective, and a proportional relation­ ship between the figures that was purely symbolic, being based on hierarchical precedence rather than visual reality. H owever, these discoveries were followed by others, which suggest that we should Fig. 6. Base o f the O belisk o f Theodosius at Constantinople (Istanbul) (c. a d 39 0 -40 0 ). Photo A . Giuliano

beware o f accepting this theory without reserva­ tions - or, at the very least, o f unthinkingly treating it as proven, which was a common occurrence after its first formulation. But above all we should take heed o f the fact that it was the coastal cities o f Syria and Asia M inor - in other words, the Eastern Mediterranean - which preserved the formal Hellen­ istic tradition longer than anywhere else: Antioch, for example, as has been shown by the series o f mosaics unearthed there. It follows that the in­ dividual style o f the coin (Plate 89) issued by Licinius, and struck at Antioch, cannot be wholly explained aw ay by the ‘Oriental influence’ formula. Echoes o f the Hellenistic tradition still survive in Iran, in Sogdiana, as late as the sixth and seventh centuries, while in the West (e.g. in Gaul, Spain and Britain) it had already vanished by the end o f the fourth. The persistence o f Hellenistic features in the cultural centres o f the Eastern Mediterranean is by no means the only evidence we have. Study o f the available material (painting and sculpture) reveals that no obviously or typically Oriental motif, within the context o f this full-face style, is to be found at Rom e before the mid-fourth century. Even then what w e are dealing with are not so much the funda­ mental ingredients o f a new style so much as secondary attributes, mere decorative motifs. These come as a welcome addition in the context o f their day, when art was largely restricted to the pro­ duction o f objets d'art and a few commemorative works in the high, ultra-refined tradition. (With architecture it is quite another matter, but that does not directly concern us here.)

The new style What conclusions, then, can we establish at this stage? First, that the break with the Hellenistic tradition, the major turning-point which put an end to ancient art and marked the beginning o f Byzan­ tine and medieval culture, was precipitated, first and foremost, by an internal upheaval within Roman society, which led to a profound change in its structure and ideology, and consequently in its mode 24

o f artistic expression. Second, this change opened the w ay for the assimilation o f the ‘plebeian’ tradition, with all its long-established motifs. Hith­ erto this element in Roman art had remained impervious to the elegant qualities o f Hellenistic naturalism ; but now its acceptance poured vitality into works created under the influence o f Oriental concepts. This was especially true as regards portraits o f the Emperor, whose person had become an object o f veneration, sacred and majestic, and therefore a fitting subject for Oriental iconography; but iconography and style are elements which operate on separate planes. Style implies artistic and formal creativity, whereas iconography is dictated by precedent and etiquette, a symbolic expression o f some ideological attitude. Indeed, the same iconographic m otif can be expressed with a wealth o f formal and stylistic variation. (One need only recall the endless varieties o f treatment which the iconographically constant Birth and Crucifixion o f Christ received in Christian art down the ages.) Almost all works o f art, whether graphic or plastic, produced between the beginning o f the third and the end o f the fourth century can be explained in terms o f the process sketched out above - certainly as far as their actual genesis is concerned. There are, however, certain exceptions, which, though few, form a clearly defined group, and the derivation o f which remains uncertain. In sculpture, a typical example is the porphyry relief o f four sovereigns, embracing each other in pairs, which stands at a corner between the Basilica o f San Marco and the D oges’ Palace in Venice (Fig. 4). It is gener­ ally supposed that these figures represent the four rulers o f the First Tetrarchy, and belong to a monument commemorating the tenth anniversary o f their joint reign, which was celebrated in 303 : they would then be identifiable as Diocletian and Maximian, Gaius Galerius, and C. Flavius Julius Constantius, known as Chlorus, or ‘Pale Face’ . On the other hand they might also be the members o f the Second Tetrarchy (305): Galerius, Constantius, M aximinus Daia, and Flavius Valerius Severus.

Various other dates and identifications have been proposed, which range widely in both space and time. The evidence for their provenance is un­ certain, and as yet we know almost nothing o f the context in which this highly specialized style devel­ oped, much less how long it continued. Its life-span was probably short, and may have been no more than a decade. In such a case, coins can make up for the general lack o f material confronting the arthistorian. Plates 78, 89 and 92 reveal a precise stylistic equivalent o f the Venice group in coins struck at Alexandria and Antioch. (Other coins not repro­ duced here, from the mints o f Nicomedia and Cyzicus, furnish further examples o f the same type.) But it is the Alexandrian mint which appears to have been especially influential; and this being so, we should not find it surprising that such examples as have survived in the field o f sculpture (at Venice, Nis, Istanbul, and in the Vatican) are all carved from porphyry - that extra-hard red stone reserved for Imperial monuments, and quarried only in Egypt. W e can probably assume, then, that this style was born and died with the Tetrarchy, in the Near East just as the appearance o f the ‘plebeian’ style on official monuments at Rom e (e.g. the frieze on the Arch o f Constantine, Fig. $) is similarly restricted to the same period. Immediately afterwards, the new class that had risen to a position o f absolute power attempted to take over the ‘high’ tradition in art, this being a long-established hallmark and emblem o f authority. The result was a phenomenon gener­ ally known as ‘Constantinian classicism’ . But here, too, the currency (see Plate 93) is very revealing. Though this classicizing trend looked back to the figure-type on Alexander the Great’s coins in its search for an ‘inspired’ model (‘Divino consilio, hoc est tuo’ , the panegyricist o f 313 (§9.4) tells Constan­ tine, ‘B y G od’s - that is by your - guidance’), never­ theless all the spirit and vitality has gone, leaving a mere stylistic exercise, echoes o f which were to recur in Carolingian art five hundred years later. On the coins o f Constans I (Platens), the obverse portrays the sovereign wearing his military cloak;

the controlled technique and spare, semi-abstract use o f line combine to suggest extreme aristocratic elegance. On the reverse we have another portrait o f the Emperor armed - but not, this time, as a cultivated courtier. N o w he is a kind o f W ar God, a tiny W inged Victory hovers crown-like above his head, but he pays no attention to it. The shield he carries has the device o f a lion’s head in high relief, a detail which today we would call typical o f the Renaissance. He is portrayed in the act o f dragging o ff a pygm y-sized prisoner by the hair, while beside him stands a wom an, helplessly lamenting the irruption o f this irresistible and alm ighty Power (centralized in the D ivine Em peror’s larger-thanlifesize head). The arms which fill the exergue are composed like a still life. A new ‘court-style’ - refined, elegant, its linear movement w eakly precious, already ‘Byzantine’ in every sense - had developed from these beginnings as early as the reign o f Theodosius (379-95); the coin struck at Milan and reproduced on Plate 98 exactly matches the style o f the reliefs from the base o f the obelisk which still stands (Fig. 6) in the Hippodrome at Constantinople. The reverse type (Plate 99) no longer conveys, as form erly at Rome, some historical or narrative message, but the in­ exorable force o f an authority that enjoys G od ’s approval and protection. Though by now (357) the altar o f that pagan goddess Victory had already been removed from the Roman Senate-house, she still appears as the symbolic crown o f the Imperator - but only in the guise o f a precious accessory, a golden figurine perched on the globe which the Cosm ocrator him self balances in one hand, while with the other he grasps a military standard. U nder his foot a stricken enemy writhes like a w orm , just as the Dragon was later to writhe beneath the lance o f the Archangel. The world o f classical antiquity, after enduring for a millennium and a half, is ended ; we are now, to all intents and purposes, in the Middle Ages. Ranuccio Bianchi Bandinelli 25

INTRODUCTION TO THE PLATES Nowadays, when greater attention is being paid to coins from the standpoint o f their intrinsic value as works o f art, interest has been mostly centred on those o f the Greek period, which are both better known, and better appreciated because o f their close and obvious relationship to the history o f classical art. In consequence, Roman coinage has been some­ what neglected. The only illumination it receives is from the Roman theory o f portraiture - which in any case sheds lustre, first and foremost, on sculpture rather than the art o f coin-design. It may, therefore, serve some useful purpose to devote the present volume (which, in accordance with its terms o f reference, aims at popular expo­ sition and does not claim to be a work o f original scholarly research) to the presentation o f material still all too little known as far as the general public is concerned. T o this end there have been assembled within its covers various examples selected - with no special influence on any particular period - from the vast legacy bequeathed us by the Roman Imperial Mint. This material is drawn almost exclusively from the Coin Cabinet o f the Museo Nazionale in Naples, except for one or two speci­ mens, the provenance o f which is stated in the commentary accompanying each o f the individual players. I am deeply grateful to the Director o f Antiquities, Professor Alfonso de Franciscis, for granting me full and free access to the Museum’s splendid numismatic collection; to D r Enrica Pozzi, the M useum’s Curator o f Coins, who supervised the arrangement o f specimens for reproduction with such loving care; and to Signor Imparato, the photographer, who carried out her instructions so skilfully and diligently. M y thanks also go to Soprintendente Professor Pietrogrande and Professor Franco Panvini Rosati for the group o f photographs taken in the Coin Cabinet o f the Museo Nazionale, R om e; and likewise to the Director o f the Staatliche Museen zu Berlin and to the Trustees o f the British Museum, London, for photographs o f specimens in their collections.

I would also like to express my gratitude to Ranuccio Bianchi Bandinelli, both for suggesting that I should undertake the present work and for his own contribution to it. The material here assembled ranges from the latter half o f the first century b c - represented by two Augustan issues - to the close o f the fourth century a d , with an aureus o f Theodosius and Arcadius. It hardly need be said that such a panor­ amic survey - essential for the presentation o f evidence which extends over a vast period, indeed almost the entire course o f the Empire - has made it impossible to deal in depth with the problems relating to any specific period. Nevertheless, the material itself has, in certain specific instances (as one would expect), more or less chosen itself, the criteria o f selection being intrinsic interest and quality. One result o f this is that the portrait, as such, has a very special claim on our attention. Though no separate sub-division has been created for it, the examples chosen take up something like half the total number o f plates. Another (and equally un­ premeditated) consequence has been the number o f reverses, naturally with a wide range o f subjectmatter, reproduced from the coinage o f certain periods, in particular the reigns o f Nero, Domitian, Galba, Nerva, and the Antonines. This, there can be little doubt, constitutes the richest and most repre­ sentative epoch o f Imperial coin-design from the artistic viewpoint. Gold, silver, and copper coins have been chosen without distinction, the sole criteria o f selection being an interesting subject or particular excellence in the execution. The need to present a complete conspectus o f evidence (even though this is bound to be at a superficial level rather than in depth) has also led me to supplement the reproductions o f coins with one or two plates showing various ‘ medallions’ (Plates 57, 59, 63,

77» 78, 95)-

These, as is well known, represent a non-monetary type o f production - destined for honorific use or the requirements o f propaganda rather than normal 27

circulation. They were struck in connection with special events that called for celebration - births, anniversaries, historic festivals, Imperial bounties, etc. - and made suitable gifts which the Emperor could bestow upon those whom he wished to single out for special honour. The purpose they served, together with the limited numbers minted on each occasion, meant that particular care was taken over their execution, and only the finest artists were employed on cutting the dies. Though the evidence at our disposal shows that medallions, on a percentage basis, achieved a higher level o f artistry than coins, their juxtaposition in the present w ork may serve to remind us, nonetheless, that in many instances (above all as regards portraits) the level o f creative excellence attained by coins could stand comparison with that o f any medallion in existence. At the same time one issue was quite liable to include, along with dies o f extraordinary beauty, many others which, though handling an identical theme, never rose above the most careless and pinched mediocrity. Furthermore, this indiscriminate selection from coins struck in all three metals has confirmed the view (by no means invariably accepted) that stand­ ards o f production do not vary significantly between them. There is a similar fluctuation o f quality in all examples, whether o f gold, silver, or bronze, which applies equally to the portraits and the scenes on the reverse. Indeed, the larger size o f bronze coins has, in certain instances, allowed a more ambitious treatment - above all, greater breadth o f com­ position, an increase in the number o f figures, a freer and more harmonious grouping. Having disposed o f these general considerations, let us now turn to the more specific material here reproduced. Our aim should be to relate the analytical findings set forth in the commentary to the plates themselves, by means o f such comprehen­ sive observations as the evidence may suggest. For this purpose we shall treat it in two large sub­ divisions: obverse and reverse. At first sight this choice o f sub-division may seem purely external and 28

conventional. Closer examination, however, shows it to be justified by the contrasting subject-matter o f the two groups, which falls into two sharply distinct categories. The obverses o f these coins deal almost exclusively with portraits; while the reverses (though no less systematic in their approach) offer us a wide variety o f topics. It is plain, moreover, that when we have to do with such divergent themes, the artistic problems involved will likewise be o f a different nature and character in each case. The truth o f this statement is apparent not only from a comparison o f obverse and reverse, but also, on closer examination, from an analysis o f the groups into which the ‘themes’ on each reverse can be sorted on the basis o f their content. Numismatists, indeed, are in the habit o f categorizing these reverses into almost as many different classifications as there are plates in this book; but they can really be narrowed down to two fundamental types. On the one hand we have various divinities and personifica­ tions; on the other, a number o f historical scenes, which can, in their turn, be sub-divided into aspects o f military and political life, mostly linked with the figure o f the Emperor, and with the religious or public functions which he carried out. Alongside the main themes, there develop various creative problems which (according to the style o f the interpretation) must be linked with the subjectmatter portrayed rather than with contemporary creative fashion. This becomes clearly apparent from a general survey o f the two above-mentioned categories. The representations o f divinities, indeed, being a direct legacy from the Hellenistic world (whether by w ay o f stock numismatic formulae, or through the translation o f statues and relief-work into coin-designs) remain attached to a more or less classicizing trend. Though this reveals various changing artistic tastes and fashions from one period to the next, it is very seldom - and then only in isolated instances - that it takes on a new and genuine lease o f life. Consequently the importance o f the group, considered as a whole, is clearly limited; and furthermore its interest tends to

decrease the further on one moves in time. The first century a d , which was still strongly influenced by neo-classicism, gives us fully realized figures such as the Pictas on Caligula’s sestertius (Plate 8), the Victory on N ero’s dupondius (a two-as piece) or the aureus struck by Galba. But in the following centu­ ries such representations become increasingly facile, and are modified in accordance with more popular and debased concepts. The Pietas on the aureus issued by Antoninus Pius (Plate 56), or the Venus on that o f Julia Domna (Plate 69), reveal a limp, imitative style, both boring and mechanical. It is odd, yet in many ways predictable, that a reaction should set in against this progressive impoverish­ ment: for instance, in some o f the coin-dies struck by the Tetrarchs. Here, perhaps to counter the strongly stylized Imperial portrait, we find an emphasis on muscular and robust physicality in representations o f the gods (Plate 86), for which the only remote precedent can be found in isolated instances from the Hellenistic tradition. So i f w e have to pronounce a general verdict on this particular development in Roman coin-design (insofar, naturally, as we can ju d ge from the evi­ dence provided by these plates, selected from the great total o f material available), our view would be that it is, beyond any doubt, the least genuine and spontaneous group o f descriptive scenes with figures which the numismatic tradition has to offer us. This conclusion is more self-evident from the coins than from other types o f monumental art, since coins (it would seem) remain especially restricted as regards their subject-matter, which here repeats itself virtu­ ally without a break, in one example after another. O f course, there are exceptions to this general trend. After several repetitions a subject may suddenly develop novel features; one instance is the figure o f Victory. Here we can see the inner concept passing through a transitional period, which finally, after some centuries, transforms this pagan deity into the angel o f the Christian tradition. O f far greater importance, however, is the second group o f reverses, in which a much wider and less

restricted range o f subject-matter produces designs not only more variegated in themselves, but also through their very composition into scenes o f heightened incident and com plexity - enriched by a unique and individual approach to the creative problems they pose. Here, as we shall sec, both general and particular circumstances left their mark. On the one hand, the very nature o f their content (which, as we have seen, was predominantly linked with public affairs) meant that the themes chosen operated within the orbit o f a tradition itself quintessentially Roman. On the other, and for much the same reason, the models from which the coin­ designer drew his inspiration inevitably belonged to one o f the two main styles in which almost all Roman art o f the Imperial period found expression : the ‘high’ official style, or that o f popular art. But before we leave the subject o f these two basic trends (which are obvious in themselves, and immediately distinguishable in the plates that follow), one more thing must be said. The latest findings o f scholarship suggest that such parallels as exist between coin­ design and the major arts are, as we might expect, largely restricted to subject-matter and general tone; there is little that hints at outright imitation. Cases in which some specific relief can be shown to have directly influenced a coin displaying an analogous theme do exist, but the phenomenon is one o f extreme rarity. A much more common case is that o f new coin-designs which em body recog­ nizable figures, or groups o f figures, taken from the vast traditional stock common to all artists working in the high-relief medium. In the large majority o f these instances, m oreover, such borrowings seem not to have been made directly, but from earlier die-cutters who had already appropriated them. Themes such as allocutiones (addresses to the troops), public sacrifices, and acclamations are particularly rich in such examples, as can be seen even from the scanty evidence provided by our plates. There are other designs, very different in tone and manifestly inspired by the popular tradition, which may be regarded, to judge by their subject-matter, 29

as a new type o f composition, or at least as one that bears little relation to previous trends in die-cutting, figure-design, or relief technique. Thus, with the coinage o f the Empire we see repeated a phenom­ enon which is even more strikingly apparent in that o f the Republic. As is well known, the lack o f a sufficiently evolved official tradition in relief-work had one very noticeable effect on Roman coin­ design. Scenes inspired by Roman myth and legend, no less than those drawn from public affairs, found their most characteristic mode o f expression on Republican coins through the medium o f a frankly ‘popular’ style - sometimes, it would seem, allied to direct and realistic observation. In the Imperial period, however, with the estab­ lishment o f a stock tradition and a considerable legacy o f experience, the phenomenon (as one would expect) becomes considerably less common. Instances do still occur, nevertheless. It can be detected, sometimes, in the overall interpretation o f a scene, such as the distribution o f largess on N erva’s sestertius (Plate 43) ; or, more frequently, in certain modifications to officially-sanctioned themes Dom itian’s series relating to the Ludi Saeculari (Plates 38 -41), the allocutio on one o f N ero’s sestertii (Plate 22), and so on. Despite such counter-currents, however, it should be clear from what has been said above that Roman coinage during the Empire forms a complementary chapter in the history o f representational art especially where the tone o f production strikes one as high in quality. Once the significance o f this phenomenon has been properly clarified, and its special nature more deeply explored - above all in connection with the administrative and technical organization o f the various individual mints active during each period - it will provide a far from negligible contribution to our general understanding o f Roman art. The other theme - both fundamental and allembracing - which the material here assembled throws into considerable prominence, is that o f por­ traiture. That this formed one o f the most noteworthy 30

achievements in the whole field o f Roman art is by now a commonplace; so, indeed, is its special relevance to coin-design. When it comes, in par­ ticular, to identifying and classifying Imperial portraits (not only o f the reigning Princeps but also o f other members o f his family), scholars have always valued (and often largely depended on) the evidence o f coins to confirm and clarify their general picture. Nevertheless, it remains true that the whole prob­ lem o f coin-portraiture and its study, even today, has yet to be dealt with properly at a fundamental level. Indeed, we are still not in a position to do so. The present w ork, therefore, makes no attempt to lay the foundations for such a study. The most it can hope to do, i f the opportunity presents itself, is to shed some light on the simpler, more obvious aspects o f the subject. All the same, it should be clear enough, even on the basis o f the evidence here presented, that there is all the difference in the world between the coinportrait prior to the end o f the third century a d (even allowing for various subtle minor variations), and that which evolves from the time o f the Tetrarchs onward, based on a w holly new developing and maturing attitude to the figure o f the Emperor. During this period the demand for an individual likeness is replaced by a far more abstract and sym­ bolical concept. While this tends to place increasing emphasis on the actual sense o f power, it also means that all those problems connected with the older type o f portraiture - the matter o f distinguishing between one model and another, the proliferation and diffus­ ion o f various styles in proportion to the number o f original artists at work - either vanished altogether or became far less important. The improved technical and administrative or­ ganization o f the mints (being better known, or at any rate easier to reconstruct) means that during this phase the problems themselves are less numerous and more readily resolved. The greatest (and there­ fore the most fascinating) puzzles involving por­ traiture all stem from the first three centuries o f the

Empire. As should by now be obvious, they present a really formidable array o f individual riddles, most o f which, naturally, are not even touched on in the present work. I have restricted m yself to discussing virtually only one o f them, though this one is un­ doubtedly o f fundamental importance. It is con­ cerned, to put the matter briefly, with the possible relationship between a numismatic portrait and its m odel: that is, with determining whether or not coin-portraits were copied from a master-relief, and whether such reliefs were indispensable for their execution. Both iconographic research on the like­ nesses o f various public figures, and the publication o f Imperial portraits, have a useful role to fulfil in numismatic scholarship by establishing criteria for comparison and classification. N ot only is this method logically valid, but it is reinforced by the vast amount o f priceless material available for study and research. A t all events, though the present w ork is based almost entirely on the findings o f previous research, it may not come amiss at this point to draw the reader’s attention to the extraordinary wealth o f evidence, for certain periods in particular, which Roman coinage has to offer us. It goes without say­ ing that the relief portrait (especially i f executed in full relief) presents a richness o f content which, leaving aside its intrinsic artistic value, the coin­ portrait can never achieve. But it is also true that for each individual portrayed there exists a wealth o f illustrative coins, which run the whole gamut o f style and interpretation, and in almost every case enlarge our knowledge to an extent that cannot possibly be ignored. W e should not, however, forget in this connection that all parallels drawn between sculpture and coinportraits, though necessary (and indeed profitable) in terms o f general comparisons and what we may term external exegesis - changing fashions in head­ dress or hair-styles, for instance - become far more delicate and difficult when we attempt to come to grips with the problem o f creative technique as such. In the latter case it w ill not suffice to compare

a piece o f sculpture with some coin or group o f coins chosen at random. We must either happily hit upon, or by very careful selection pick out, one particular die, or group o f dies, which can be shown to have a special and unique relationship with the relief-portrait in question. T o understand the need for such a rule we have only to take a look at certain plates in the present work. The three likenesses o f Galba (Plates 25, 27, 29) and the two o f N erva (Plates 42, 44), deliberately juxtaposed here for purposes o f comparison, each constitute an independent, sharply differential ap­ proach to reality, which only depends up to a point on the identity o f the subject portrayed. The differences to be observed between these various portraits emphasize the danger o f drawing conclu­ sions about a period’s artistic trends before the bulk o f the evidence (including that provided by coins) has been properly collated. They also demonstrate how vital it is that we should ascertain the general relationship, even as regards technical organization at its simplest level, between relief portraits and likenesses on coins. One thing at least is obvious : in view o f the vast number o f coin-portraits in exist­ ence, it is impossible to suppose (though some have thought otherwise) that behind every one we must posit an immediate and individual relief model. The truth seems to be that though coin-designers did, in fact, utilize the models distributed to the various mints, they allowed themselves the greatest possible licence when it came to copying and inter­ preting them. They were obliged to preserve the more distinctive features o f each sitter’ s physiog­ n om y; but apart from this they enjoyed complete artistic independence. It was, however,- from a model o f some sort, which may have been either a relief-portrait, a sketch or another coin, that the designer worked out his various likenesses, and cut them on a series o f die-punches. These portraits were subsequently further developed and multiplied as a result o f successive reinterpretations; i f they remained dependent on the original model at this point, it was in a strictly limited sense. 31

As numismatists learn to recognize the more regular characteristics which distinguish the work o f each individual mint, the question o f whether any possible connection exists between a given reliefportrait and coin-portrait will become progressively easier to answer. But such parallels, it would seem, can never, except in a few isolated and unpredictable cases, provide other than purely generic or approxi­ mate information concerning the direct link be­ tween sculpture and coin-design ; they are incapable o f more specific findings. This is, as I have said, a highly complex topic, which even today admits o f many possible inter­ pretations, none o f which can be regarded as proven. Let us leave it, then, and conclude by glancing briefly at the overall development which the plates in this book reveal. The few facts which need to be told are both simple and well-known. Coin-design evolves along roughly parallel lines with the major arts, as regards both choice o f subject-matter and trends in artistic fashion. N ever­ theless it would appear that the relationship between them remained generic and external rather than a matter o f close and continuous interdependence or borrowing. In other words, one gets the impression that coin-design, although obviously reflecting artistic evolution as a whole both in subject-matter and in approach, still follows its own traditional line o f development. From time to time it re-fashions and re-adapts existing models ; on occasion, when no suitable theme or model is ready to hand, it will create something new and original. It is such exceptions, rather than the general run, which in more than one example show the influence o f popular art. The plates, moreover, naturally concentrate on certain periods more than others, thus indicating the particular richness o f material which they have to offer. Imperial Roman coin-production reached its peak, in both quantity and quality, during the period a d 50-150, with a phase o f quite superlative achievement under Galba, Domitian, Hadrian, and the Antonines. The coinage o f Trajan, as is well 32

known, marked a special limited phase in the history o f Roman numismatic art. Under this Emperor artists employed a highly idiosyncratic technique, producing stiff", flattened relief-work that never fully exploited the medium. Even though the overall quality o f coin-production diminishes (from the artistic viewpoint at least) as time goes on, the tradi­ tion remains very much alive. N o w and then, as late as the Severi and Gallienus, even during the period o f the Tetrarchs, there still emerges, here and there, an individual artist o f the very first rank: and this despite a complete transformation o f taste, and the fact that creative innovation seems inspired by new motives, and in pursuit o f altogether different goals. Be that as it may, there is a wealth o f evidence to be drawn from coins, and their types can make a fascinating, indeed a vital, contribution to learning. W e hope that the present work attests the validity o f such a claim. Laura Breglia

THE PLATES

I

A U G U S T U S (27

B c-A D

14)

Obu. C A E S A R A V G V S T V S . B are head o f A u gu s­ tus, facing r. R e v. S I G N I S R E C E P T I S . Shield bearing the letters C L - V (Clipeus Virtutis), flanked by the legio n ary eagle and a m ilitary standard; in the four corners the letters S P Q R (Senatus Populusque Romanus). N ap les, M us. N az. Fioretti 3 5 17 . A ureus.

Cohen 26 4 -5 (20 b c ); R I C I, p. 86, no. 305 (27 b c ); cf. Laffranchi in R I N ( 19 12 ), p. 166, no. 3 1 (w h o dates the issue 1 6 - 1 5 b c ). T h e re v e rse s h o w s a sh ie ld w it h th e le g io n a r y e a g le o n o n e sid e a n d a m ilit a r y sta n d a rd o n th e o th e r, a c c o m p a n ie d b y th e in sc rip tio n signis receptis. T h is d ates th e c o in to a p e r io d s h o r t ly a fte r 2 0 b c , w h e n , as a re su lt o f w e ll- t im e d n e g o tia tio n s , A u g u s tu s p e rsu a d e d P h ra a te s, K in g o f P a rth ia , to g iv e b a c k th re e R o m a n sta n d a rd s lo st d u r in g u n su cc essfu l m ilit a r y a c tio n s, th e d e fe a te d g e n e ra ls b e in g C ra ssu s (5 3 ), D e c id iu s S a x a (40), a n d A u t e r iu s (36). T h e o c c a s io n m a d e a g re a t stir in R o m e . A u g u s tu s h im s e lf r e c e iv e d a salutatio im peratoria ; o th e r c e le b ra ­ tio n s in c lu d e d fe stiv a ls in h o n o u r o f T ib e r iu s , a n d v a r io u s o d es b y th e p o e ts. It is h a r d ly s u rp ris in g th a t th e c o in a g e , t o o , s h o u ld h a v e c a u g h t th e g e n e ra l m o o d , so th a t se v e ra l issues w e r e stru c k c o m m e m ­ o r a t in g th e e v e n t. T h e s ty le o f th e p o r tr a it h as le d sc h o la rs to a ttrib u te th is p a rtic u la r g o ld p ie c e to th e C o lo n ia P a tric ia ( C o r d o v a ) m in t, w h e r e A u g u s tu s is re p re ­ sen te d b a re h e a d e d , a n d w it h a s t r ik in g ly y o u t h fu l a p p e a ra n c e , d e sp ite h is c o m p a r a t iv e ly a d v a n c e d a g e (he m u st h a v e b e e n a t lea st 43 at th e tim e ). T h o s e c o in -p o r t r a it s o f A u g u s tu s w h ic h e x p e rts h a v e a ssig n e d to th e m in t in q u e s tio n d o , in d e e d ,

34

h a v e c e rta in d is tin g u is h in g fe atu res. T h e s tru c tu re o f th e h e a d is fir m a n d w e ll- p r o p o r t io n e d , s ta n d in g o u t in h ig h r e l ie f fr o m its c irc u la r base. T h e h a ir, to o , is tre a te d in a sp ec ial w a y , ea ch lo c k b e in g a rra n g e d so th at it c u rv e s u p w a r d s a ro u n d th e s itte r’ s c ra n iu m . W h a t c a n n o t b e d e n ie d is th at th e s ty le o f this p o r tr a it (in it s e lf s o m e w h a t c o m m o n p la c e an d b an al) d iffe rs fu n d a m e n t a lly fr o m th a t o f th e o n e s h o w n o n th e fo l lo w in g p la te . T h is w a s e x e c u te d s o m e fifte e n y e a rs la te r - u n d e r th e a u sp ices, it is t h o u g h t, o f th e L u g d u n u m (L y o n s ) m in t (P late 3). T h o u g h th e se c o n d lik en e ss is fa r m o r e id e a liz e d , its fe a tu re s n e v e rth e le ss r e v e a l g re a te r in d iv id u a lit y o f tre a tm e n t. O b s e r v e th a t lo n g n o se , s w e llin g s lig h tly in th e m id d le , th o se firm -s e t lip s, th at p ro m in e n t c h in , th a t a le rt e x p re ss io n . S u c h a m a r k e d co n tra st in s ty le m u st b e d u e , n o t o n ly to a b a s ic a lly d iffe re n t m o d e l, b u t also to th e fa c t th a t o n e d ie -c u t te r w a s a fa r b e tte r cra fts m a n th an th e o th e r.

2

A U G U S T U S (27 B

c-

a d

14)

Obu. S P Q R C A E S A R I A V G V S T O . B are head o f A ugustu s, facing r. R ev. Q V O D V I A E M V N S V N T . T h e E m p ero r, cro w n ed w ith V ic to ry , in a trium phal ch ariot on a double arch supported b y a viaduct. N aples, M us. N az. C o ll. Stevens 1 2 7 5 13 . A ureus.

Cohen, fig e, p. 9$ (denarius) ; R I C I, p. 87, no. 3 18 (the description o f the reverse type gives the chariot as a ‘b ig a ’ ; this m a y be a variant or possibly an erro r in o n ly seeing tw o horses instead o f four) ; Bernhart, p. 140.

This example was attributed by Laffranchi, and subsequently by M attingly, to the Colonia Patricia (Cordova) mint on the grounds o f its style, which seemingly corresponds with that o f the bronze provincial issues from the Spanish mints, dated as a series between 20 and 16 b c . Despite a variety o f hypotheses, the triumphal arch has not been identified with any certainty. H owever, its special position on the viaduct led M attingly to suppose (a view confirmed by the inscription quod viae munitae sunt - ‘because the roads have been reinforced’) that it must be con­ nected with the restoration o f the Via Flaminia. On this occasion two arches were erected in honour o f Augustus, one at Rom e, the other at Arim inum (Rimini). H ow far this identification is compatible with the theory that the coin was struck by a pro­ vincial mint seems open to doubt; but in any case the attribution largely depends on the style o f the Em peror’s portrait, and would appear to be con­ firmed by direct study o f the scene depicted on the reverse. The most striking feature here is the gross dis­ proportion o f two elements in the design : the chariot is drawn on a far larger scale than the arch which 36

supports it. Indeed, the whole o f its upper level is filled by the horses’ hooves, so that the chariot’s wheels scarcely touch the arch at all. But the amateurishness o f the artist does not stop here. (He has, it is true, executed the small figure o f Victory with lively gusto, skilfully fitting her long wings into the coin’s outer curve.) Observe the position o f the wheels (the second wheel is invisible) in relation to that o f the horses, and, above all, examine the horses’ hooves: eight in front, but only four behind. Even the w ay in which this scene is presented - the artist has not dared to attempt a frontal repre­ sentation o f the chariot on the arch, though this is more common as a numismatic m otif - suggests a far from exacting standard o f composition, readily satisfied with ad hoc and inadequate solutions to its problems.

3

A U G U S T U S (27BC-AD14)

O bv. C A E S A R A V G V S T V S D I V I F P A T E R P A T R I A E . H ead o f A ugustu s, cro w n ed w ith laurelw reath , facing r. R e v . C L C A E S A R E S A V G V S T I F C O S D E S 1G P R I N C I V V E N T . Caius and Lucius Caesar standing, arm ed w ith spears and leaning on shields; abo ve them a trum pet and a small ladle (simpulum). N ap les, M us. N az . Fiorelli 3959. A ureus.

Cohen 4 2 -3 ; R I C l , p. 90, no. 350, pi. Ill, 4 7 ; cf. Laffran chi in R I N (19 13 ) , p. 3 15 ; S .L . C esano in A tti e Mem orie dell Astituto Italiano di Numismatica 8 (1934 ), pp. 10 4 -2 3 , w ith b ib lio g ra p h y ; M . L. V ollen w eid e r, ‘ Principes Iu v entutis’ , in Schweizer M ünzblätter (1964), pp. 76 -80 , fo r the classification o f the reverse and a com parison w ith sim ilar scenes on gem s.

T h is g o ld p ie c e ca n , it w o u l d se e m , b e d a te d b y t w o fa c to rs : th e a p p e lla tio n Pater P atriae o n th e o b v e rs e , a n d th e scen e p re se n te d o n th e re v e rse , w h ic h s h o w s A u g u s t u s ’ s t w o a d o p te d son s, C a iu s a n d L u c iu s C a e s a r. T h is su g g e sts 2 b c as th e y e a r in w h ic h th e issu e w a s firs t stru c k . It w a s th en th a t L u c iu s C a e s a r re c e iv e d th e title o f princeps iuven tu tis, a c c o rd e d to h is b r o th e r C a iu s t w o y e a rs p r e v io u s ly . H o w lo n g th e issue c o n tin u e d (n u m e ro u s e x a m p le s s u r v iv e ) is b y n o m ea n s so ce rta in . S o m e sc h o la rs, su ch as M a t t in g ly , b e lie v e it re m a in e d in c irc u la t io n u n til a D 1 4 , w h ile o th e rs (e .g . C e sa n o ) lim it it to a d 4, th e y e a r o f C a iu s C a e s a r ’ s d e a t h ; L u c iu s h a d d ie d in a d 2. O th e rs a g a in , L a ffra n c h i fo r o n e , r e g a r d th e e n tire issue as p o s th u m o u s a n d c o m m e m o r a t iv e , a n d th e re fo re d a te it after a d 4. T h is sp e c im e n w a s stru c k b y th e L u g d u n u m (L y o n s ) m in t, a n d its c h ie f in te re st lies in its e x c e lle n t p o r tr a it o f A u g u s tu s . H e a p p e a rs to b e w e a r in g th e c r o w n o f c o rn -e a rs : th is w a s th e e x c lu s iv e r ig h t o f th a t collegium sacerdotale (p rie stly g u ild ) k n o w n as th e

38

A r v a l B r e t h r e n - o n e o f th e m o st a n c ie n t g u ild s in R o m e , d e d ic a te d to th e c u lt o f v a r io u s ru ra l d eities. In c o n tra st to th e p r e v io u s p o rtra it o f A u g u s tu s, th is o n e is d istin g u ish e d b y its g r a n d e u r a n d n o b ilit y o f fe a tu re , a n d an a ir o f m a tu re d ig n it y w h ic h th e a rtist w h o c u t th e d ie a tte m p te d , w it h r e m a rk a b le success, to b r in g o u t in it. T h e r e a re n u m e ro u s p o rtra its o f A u g u s tu s in e x is te n c e : a b o u t 14 0 , in fa c t, o f w h ic h a g o o d p r o p o r t io n a re o n c o in s. T h e p re se n t e x a m p le c le a r ly b e lo n g s to th e ‘h ig h ’ H e lle n istic tra d itio n , w h ic h d u r in g th is p e r io d re a c h e d its p e a k o f a c h ie v e m e n t a n d p o p u la r ity . It w il l n o t su ffice, h o w e v e r , to a ttrib u te th e p o r­ tra it to a p a rtic u la r tre n d a n d le a v e it at th at. T h e q u a lit y o f s ty le w h ic h it re v e a ls m e rits clo se r s c ru t in y a n d a m o r e c o n sid e re d e v a lu a tio n . T h o u g h it d o es n o t d e r iv e d ir e c tly f r o m a n y p a rtic u la r k n o w n ty p e , it w o u ld a p p e a r to b e c lo s e ly lin k e d w it h th e v a r io u s re p re se n ta tio n s o f A u g u s tu s fr o m F o n d i, w it h th e H e rc u la n e u m p o rtra it, a n d ce rta in o th ers. T h is g r o u p has b e e n a ttrib u te d to artists b r o u g h t u p in th e d ire c t W e s t e rn G r e e k tra d itio n . T h e p re se n t sp e c im e n d is p la y s a m o st d e lic a te a p p ro a c h to r e lie f- w o r k , a n d a s u b tle m a n ip u la tio n o f p lan e s w h ic h ca n re p re se n t th e so fte st s k in -te x t u re w it h o u t a n y n ee d fo r s tro n g c h ia ro s c u ro . Its h ig h ly in d iv id u a l te c h n iq u e seem s to h in t a t an o rig in a l m o d e l in c la y ; a n d th ese sep a rate e le m e n ts a re fu se d in a p o r tr a it th a t is b o th s t r ik in g ly life lik e a n d o f e x t re m e n o b ilit y .

4

T IB E R IU S ( ad 14- 37)

O bv. T I D I V I F A V G V S T V S . H ead o f T iberius, w ith lau rel-w reath , facing r. R e v . T R P O T X X V I . W in g e d V ic to ry seated, facin g r., on glob e, w ith diadem in her hands. N ap les, N az. M us. Fiorelli 4025. G o ld quinarius (half­ denarius).

Cohen 54 ; R I C I, pp. 10 3 -4 , pi. V , 7 7 ; Laffranchi in R I N ( 19 13 ) , pp. 32o ff. T h e p o r tr a it o f T ib e r iu s r e p r o d u c e d h e re b e lo n g s, b r o a d ly s p e a k in g , to th e p a tte rn o f d e sig n fo llo w e d b y th e L u g d u n u m (L y o n s ) m in t, w h ic h issu ed this series b e fo r e it a p p e a re d at R o m e . W h ils t c e rta in fe a tu re s d o u n d o u b t e d ly c o in c id e w it h th o se a ttri­ b u te d to p o rtra its o f T ib e r iu s stru c k b y th is m in t, e.g. th e s h o rt, p o w e r fu l n e c k , th e s lig h t y e t s tu b b o rn ch in , th e s h a rp ly a n g le d tr e a tm e n t o f th a t c o m p a c t p r o file , o th e rs d iv e r g e w id e l y fr o m th e fo r m u la , an d m u st re p re se n t th e p e rso n a l in te rp re t a t io n o f th e d ie -c u t te r - c le a r ly a m a n o f e x c e p t io n a l a rtistic ta len t. In a d 2 4 , th e y e a r to w h ic h th is c o in h as b ee n a ttrib u te d , T ib e r iu s w a s a b o u t s ix t y . T h e a rtist has id e a liz e d th e o ld E m p e r o r , n o t o n ly b y m a k in g h im lo o k m u c h y o u n g e r , b u t a lso b y g iv in g h im a p e n ­ s iv e a n d n o b ly m e la n c h o ly e x p re ss io n . T h e e ffe c t is o b ta in e d la r g e ly b y h is tr e a tm e n t o f th e e y e , w h ic h d e ep e n s as it a p p ro a c h e d th e n o se , a n d b y th e c a re fu l w a y h e re p ro d u c e s T ib e r iu s ’ s tig h t-p u r s e d m o u th , m a k in g th e u p p e r lip th in a n d p r o t r u d in g , th e u n d e r­ lip sh o rt a n d sen su al. T h e n o se , to o , is n o t stra ig h t, as in o th e r p o rtra its , b u t v e r y s lig h t ly a q u ilin e , th us a d d in g to th e g e n e ra l im p re ss io n o f n o b ilit y . E v e n in p r o file th e d ie -c u t te r has c o n t r iv e d to su g g e s t th e tria n g u la r s tru c tu re o f T ib e r iu s ’ s fe a tu re s, fa m ilia r to us fr o m so m a n y p o rtra it-b u sts. T h e d ie fr o m w h ic h th is lik en e ss w a s s tru c k has, a r tis tic a lly s p e a k in g , m u c h in c o m m o n w it h th at

40

u sed fo r th e re v e rse o f th e sa m e c o in (P late 5 ); in d e e d , th e sam e c u tte r m a y w e ll h a v e p re p a re d th e m b o th . W it h re g a rd to th e p o r t r a it ’ s p la c e in th e g e n e ra l c o n te x t o f T ib e r ia n ic o n o g r a p h y (as m o st re c e n t ly e sta b lish ed ), it m u st d o u b tle ss b e a ssig n ed to th e L u g d u n u m g r o u p , b u t n e v e rth e le ss, as I h a v e said , rep resen ts a v a r ia n t o n th e n o rm a l in te rp re ta ­ tio n , a n d b y n o m ea n s an u n w o r t h y o n e. It also m a y s e rv e to c o n fir m , i f su ch c o n fir m a tio n b e n ee d e d , th a t a c o in -p o r t r a it ca n a c h ie v e en d less shades o f in te rp re t a t io n b y re p r o d u c in g th e sam e fa ce o n a n u m b e r o f d iffe re n t dies.

5

T IB E R IU S

(a d

14-37)

O bv. T I D I V I F A V G V S T V S . H ead o f T iberius, w ith lau rel-w reath , facing r. R e v . T R P O T X X V I . W in g ed V ic to ry seated, facing r., on globe, w ith diadem in her hands. N aples, N az. M us. Fioretti 4025. G o ld quinarius (half­ denarius).

Cohen 54 ; R I C I, pp. 10 3 -4 , pi. V , 7 7 ; Laffranchi in R I N ( 1 9 13 ) , pp. 32o ff.

V ic t o r y w a s a fa v o u r it e a n d fr e q u e n t ly p o r t r a y e d fig u r e in o ffic ia l R o m a n a rt, w h ic h re g a r d e d h er p r im a r ily as a m ilit a r y g o d d e ss. T h e c h a r m in g v e r s io n o n th e q u in a riu s r e p r o d u c e d h e re m a rk s an u n u su a l d e p a rtu re fr o m th e s to c k c o n c e p t. N o r m a l l y she a p p e a rs s ta n d in g , in a v a r ie t y o f p o stu re s (cf. P la te s 2 3 , 3 0 , 6 2 , 82, 9 4), o r a c tu a lly a ir b o r n e ; b u t h e re she is seated o n a g lo b e , v e r y c o m p o s e d a n d c o lle c te d , k n ee s clo se to g e th e r, h an d s o u tstre tc h e d a n d h o ld in g w h a t lo o k s lik e a d ia d e m . E v e r y t h in g a b o u t th is c o m p o s itio n , th e h a irs ty le , th e w a y h e r r o b e c lin g s a b o u t h e r le g s, th e o v e r a ll sen se o f b a la n c e , th e w a y th e fig u r e stand s o u t a g a in st its b a c k g r o u n d , irre s is tib ly re c a lls s im ila r m o tifs o n G r e e k c o in s o f th e cla ssica l p e rio d . O n e is re m in d e d , in p a rtic u la r, o f issues s tru c k b y th e G r e e k c it y o f T e r in a , in B r u t t iu m , w h ic h fo r th e g re a te r p a rt o f th e fift h c e n t u r y b c h a d ju s t su ch a seated W in g e d V ic t o r y o n th e ir re v e rse s. T h e n e o -c la ssic a l in flu e n c e w h ic h b o th in sp ire d th is c o m p o s itio n a n d p e rv a d e s e v e r y a sp e ct o f it is in lin e w it h th e g e n e ra l tre n d fo llo w e d b y J u l i o C la u d ia n a rt, o f w h ic h it fo r m s a m a jo r in g re d ie n t. T h e p re se n t e x a m p le g o e s fa r b e y o n d a m e re fr ig id e x e rc is e in c u ltu ra l re m in is c e n c e , a n d is, in d e e d , e n ­ liv e n e d b y an in d iv id u a l g ra c e w h ic h tra n sfo rm s th e e n tire c h a ra c te r o f th e r e lie f- w o r k .

42

6

C A L IG U L A

(a d

37-41)

O bv. C C A E S A R A V G G E R M A N I C V S P O N M T R P O T . H ead o f C a lig u la , w earin g lau rel-w reath , facin g 1. R e v . A G R I P P I N A D R V S I L L A I V L I A . C a lig u la ’ s three sisters p o rtrayed respectively as Securitas, C on­ cordia and Fortuna. In the ex e rg u e appear the letters S C (Senatus Consulto). P rivate collection. Sestertius.

Cohen 4 ; R I C I, p. 1 1 7 , 26, pi. V II, 1 1 5 ; B ern h art, pp. 87, 90, 99.

C a lig u la ’ s th re e sisters, fo r w h o m h e c o n c e iv e d an illic it p a ssio n a n d w h o m h e sen t, o n e a fte r th e o th e r, in to e x ile (e x c e p t h is fa v o u r it e , D r u s illa , w h o d ie d y o u n g ) , a re h e re p e rs o n ifie d as d iv in itie s. T h o u g h a ll th re e a re s ty liz e d in a sim ila r m a n n e r, t h e y n e v e r ­ th eless d is p la y in d iv id u a l a n d d is tin g u is h in g c h a r­ acte ristics. C oncordia h as o n e h a n d lo w e r e d a n d h o ld s a p a te ra in i t ; Securitas is le a n in g a g a in st a p illa r ; w h ile Fo rtu n a ’ s r ig h t h a n d c o n tro ls a ru d d e r, th e o th e r e n d o f w h ic h rests o n th e g ro u n d . W h ile th e th re e fig u re s, r e g a r d e d in is o la tio n , d o n o t re v e a l a n y o b v io u s m o tifs id e n t ifia b le w it h th e c la ssic iz in g tre n d o f th e c o m p o s itio n as a w h o le , th e re a re s o m e v e r y in te re s tin g p o in ts a b o u t th e ir p o s itio n in g o n th e c o in , a n d th e sty lis tic a im s w h ic h m o d ify th e ir te c h n ic a l e x e c u t io n . T h e c o n c e p t o f th re e ju x t a p o s e d fig u re s is n o t a n e w o n e in R o m a n c o in -d e s ig n , w h ic h uses it, e s p e c ia lly d u r in g th e Im p e r ia l p e r io d , to p e r s o n ify th e th re e b asic ty p e s o f c o in : g o ld , s ilv e r a n d b ro n z e - a s ig n ific a n t a n d c h a ra c te ristic s y m b o liz a tio n . B u t in th is sp e c im e n , w h ic h d ates fr o m a d 3 7 , th e fig u re s see m to h a v e b e e n c o m p o s e d w it h co n s c io u s a n d

44

d e lib e ra te a rt, a p ra c tic e n o t fo llo w e d b y m o st o f the o th e r e x a m p le s . P a r t ic u la r ly s trik in g a re th e t w o fig u re s o n th e le ft w h ic h fo r m a u n it y b y v ir tu e o f t h e ir in tu rn e d faces, a p a tte rn re p e a te d b y th e h an d c la sp in g th e p illa r, a n d th e p o s itio n in g o f th e t w o c o rn u c o p ia e , ea ch h e ld in a s y m m e t r ic a lly id e n tic a l fa sh io n . T h e v e r y fe a tu re s w h ic h lin k th ese fig u re s to g e th e r lik e w is e s e rv e to iso la te th e th ird , th at o f F o rtu n e , th o u g h she is, n e v e rth e le ss, b r o u g h t in to th e ir o r b it b y th e tu rn o f h e r h e a d , th e w a y h e r r ig h t a r m is e x t e n d e d to w a rd s th e m , a n d th e p la c in g o f h er c o rn u c o p ia . T h e h e a v y fo ld o f c lo th th a t h a n g s fr o m th is g o d d e s s ’ s a r m fo rm s a n a tu ra l b o r d e r a n d lim it to th e scene. O n e fe a tu re u n u su a l in d ie -c u t tin g o n R o m a n co in s is th e r e l ie f te c h n iq u e , w it h its h e a v y a c c e n tu a ­ tio n o f d r a p e r y a n d its fir m ly ch a ra c te riz e d fe atu res. E v e n th e a rra n g e m e n t o f th e n a m e s su g g e sts a th re e -d im e n s io n a l, a rc h ite c tu ra l in te rp re ta tio n o f th e genre.

7

C A L IG U L A ( a d 37-41)

O bv. A G R I P P I N A M F M A T C C A E S A R I S A V G V S T I . B ust o f A grip p in a, facing r. R ev. S P Q R M E M O R I A E A G R I P P I N A E . C ar­ pentum d ra w n b y tw o m ules, facing 1. N ap les, M us. N az. Fiorelli 4 16 5 . Sestertius.

Cohen 1 ; R I C I, p. 1 1 8 , no. 42, pi. V II I , 12 3 .

T h is re p r o d u c t io n s h o w s us a p o r tr a it o f A g r ip p in a , th e a u stere a n d fa ith fu l w ife o f G e rm a n ic u s . S h e w a s b o r n a b o u t 1 $ b c , h e r p a ren ts b e in g A g r ip p a a n d A u g u s t u s ’ s d a u g h t e r J u lia . A t s o m e u n k n o w n d ate she m a rrie d G e rm a n ic u s a n d a c c o m p a n ie d h im o n all h is m ilit a r y c a m p a ig n s , h e r p re se n c e e n h a n c in g h e r h u sb a n d ’ s p o p u la r it y w it h th e tro o p s . W h e n G e r ­ m a n ic u s d ie d in S y r ia , A g r ip p in a b r o u g h t b a c k his ashes to R o m e , a n d a ccu se d P iso o f h a v in g p o is o n e d h im . T ib e r iu s e x ile d h e r to th e isla n d o f P a n d a ta ria , w h e r e in a d 33 she s ta rv e d to d e ath . H e r p o rtra its o n co in s (w h ic h h a v e a lso s e rv e d to id e n t ify v a r io u s sc u lp tu re d busts) r e v e a l a w o m a n o f stern a n d d ig n i­ fie d m ie n , v e r y m u c h th e k in d o f p e rso n w e m ig h t e x p e c t fr o m w h a t o u r lit e r a r y so u rce s te ll us a b o u t h e r life . H e r h a ir is d re ssed in th e C la u d ia n sty le , p a rte d d o w n th e m id d le a n d c o m b e d o u t in w a v e s , w it h a c lu ste r o f r in g le ts o v e r e ith e r e a r, a n d a h e a v y chignon b e h in d . T h e lo o s e c u rls o n e ith e r sid e o f th e n e c k a re h ig h ly c h a ra c te ris tic ; t h e y also a p p e a r in th e p o rtra it-b u sts. O n e in te re s tin g fe a tu re , e s p e c ia lly in re la tio n to la te r p o rtra its , is th e tr e a tm e n t o f th e d r a p e r y . T h is is c le a r ly h e a v y stu ff, a n d y e t it is re p re se n te d b y fin e , fir m l y d r a w n , ir r e g u la r lin es

46

w h ic h c o a le sc e in to a m ass. T h e r e is, m o r e o v e r , c o m p le te co n s iste n c y o f sty le b e t w e e n th e r e n d e rin g o f d r a p e r y a n d h a ir ; th e la tte r c o m b in e s an o v e r a ll im p re ss io n o f th e s itte r’ s m élonfrisure w it h d e ta ile d a tte n tio n to ea ch in d iv id u a l tress. O n th e r e v e rse o f th e c o in th e re is a re p re se n ta tio n o f th e carpentum , a c o m fo r t a b le tw o - w h e e le d ca r­ r ia g e o f Ita lia n o r ig in , d r a w n b y a p a ir o f m u les, a n d re s e rv e d (in th e city ) fo r th e use o f lad ie s b e lo n g in g to th e Im p e ria l fa m ily . T h is sestertiu s w a s stru c k b y C a lig u la , w h o issu ed it p o s th u m o u s ly in h o n o u r o f h is m o th e r, a n d th e issue it s e lf ca m e fr o m th e R o m e m in t.

8

C A L IG U L A ( a d 37- 4 i )

O bv. C C A E S A R D I V I A V G P R O N A V G P M T R P III P P . F ig u re o f Pietas seated, facin g 1., w ith a patera (libation dish) in her h an d ; in the ex e rg u e the w o rd P I E T A S . B eh in d her stands a sm all fig u re o f u n k n o w n identity and significance. R e v . D I V O A V G S C . H exastyle tem ple, in fron t o f w h ich stands the E m p ero r, abou t to sacrifice a bull. N ap les, M us. N az. Fiorelli 4 1 4 1 . Sestertius.

Cohen 1 1 ; R I C I, p. 1 1 7 , no. 37, pi. V II, 1 16 .

B e c a u s e o f th e ir in trin sic in te re st, b o th sides o f this c o in o f C a lig u la ’ s a re r e p ro d u c e d h e re . T h e in ­ s c rip tio n re fe rs to th e fig u r e o f P ie ta s p o r t r a y e d o n th e o b v e rs e . P ie ta s w a s w id e l y v e n e ra t e d in R o m e e v e n d u r in g th e R e p u b lic a n e r a ; she h a d t w o te m p le s, o n e in th e F o r u m O lit o r iu m ( R o m e ’ s p u b lic v e g e ta b le m a rk e t) d e d ic a te d b y M . A c iliu s G lä b r o in 1 8 1 b c , a n d th e o th e r in th e C ir c u s F la m in iu s , n e a r th e te m p le o f N e p tu n e . T o ju d g e b y th e fr e q u e n c y w it h w h ic h she is p o r t r a y e d o n co in s, th e re m u st a lso h a v e b ee n n u m e ro u s statues a n d p a in tin g s o f h e r in e x is te n c e . G re e c e , b y c o n tra st, re v e a ls n o su ch tra d itio n . W e sh o u ld n o te , h o w e v e r , th a t w h e re a s th e c o in ­ p o rtra its , d e sp ite th e ir g e n e ra liz e d n a tu re , fa ll in to a sep a rate a n d r e c o g n iz a b le class, it is h a rd to d e c id e ( w ith o u t s o m e e x t e r n a l e v id e n c e ) ju s t w h ic h d ra p e d d e m a le statu es o u t o f th e m a n y s u r v iv in g are in te n d e d to re p re se n t P ietas. T h e c o in s h o w n h ere p o r tr a y s h e r as a v e ile d fig u r e w it h a p a te ra in h e r o u tstre tc h e d r ig h t h a n d . A n o t h e r fa v o u r it e in te r­ p re ta tio n asso cia tes h e r w it h o n e o r m o r e fe ll o w g o d d e sse s, o r, v e r y o fte n , w it h a c h ild o r c h ild re n .

48

S o m e co in s, a g a in , s h o w h e r sta n d in g b esid e a s m o k in g a lta r, o fte n w it h a p a te ra a n d sce p tre in h er h an d s. F in a lly , th ere a re e x a m p le s in w h ic h P ietas is s h o w n , n o t so m u c h as a d iv in it y in h e r o w n rig h t, b u t ra th e r as an a ttrib u te o f th e E m p e r o r : w e fin d h e r n a m e ( w ith o u t a n y p o rtra it) a sso cia ted w it h s o m e scen e in w h ic h th e E m p e r o r is c o n d u c tin g a s a c rific e , ra isin g a w o m a n to h e r fe et, o r e n g a g e d in s o m e o th e r s im ila r act. T h e p re se n t c o in dates fr o m a d 4 1 . It d o es n o t r e v e a l a n y th e m a tic in n o v a tio n s , e v e n in th e s tric tly fo r m a l sense. T h e P ie ta s h e re p o r t r a y e d b e lo n g s to a fa m ilia r g en re, th a t o f th e v e ile d a n d seated w o m a n . T h is p o p u la r m o t i f ca n b e u sed fo r a g re a t v a r ie t y o f p u rp o s e s ; it is lia b le to re p re se n t a n y t h in g fr o m R o m e p e rso n ifie d to th e g o d d e s s C e re s , b o th o n c o in s a n d in s c u lp tu re d r e lie f- w o r k . A n o th e r in ­ te re s tin g fe a tu re is th e fin e , d e lic a te tre a tm e n t g iv e n to th e d r a p e r y . In o rd e r to e m p h a siz e th e g o d d e s s ’ s fu ll, rip e b rea sts, th e m a te ria l is d isp o se d o n an d a ro u n d h e r b o d y in a series o f fo ld s a n d a rtific ia l flo u n c e s re m in is c e n t o f th e a rc h a iz in g m o v e m e n t.

9

C A L IG U L A ( a d 37-41)

Obu. C C A E S A R D I V I A V G P R O N A V G P M T R P III P P. Pietas, veiled and facing 1., w ith a patera (libation dish) in her hand and in the ex e rg u e the in­ scription P I E T A S . R ei'. D I V O A V G S C . H exastyle tem ple decorated w ith festoons, and figures on pedim ent and co rn ice; in the fo reg ro u n d stands C a lig u la , veiled, w ith a patera in one hand, facing 1., in the act o f sacrificing on an altar, to w h ich the slaughterm an is d ra g g in g a bull. A second a colyte stands behind the E m p ero r. N ap les, M us. N az . Fiorelli 4 1 4 1 . Sestertius.

Cohen 1 1 ; R / C I,p p . 117 fr ., no. 37, pi. V II, 116 . T h is sp le n d id e x a m p le fr o m C a lig u la ’ s r e ig n (the o b v e r s e is re p r o d u c e d o n P la te 8) ca n b e d a te d to a d 4 1 a n d c o m e s, b e y o n d a n y d o u b t, fr o m th e R o m e m in t. T h e te m p le in fr o n t o f w h ic h th e sa c rific e is b e in g c o n d u c te d h as b e e n id e n t ifie d w it h th a t o f th e D iv in e A u g u s tu s , w h ic h w a s b e g u n b y T ib e r iu s a n d c o m p le te d (a c c o rd in g to T a c itu s a n d S u e to n iu s) b y C a lig u la , th o u g h P lin y sa y s L iv ia b u ilt it. A s fo r its site, th is m a y p e rh a p s b e lo c a te d in th e F o r u m R o m a n u m , n e a r th e T e m p le o f C a s t o r. O n e in te re s tin g p o in t a b o u t th is c o in is th e w a y th e d ie -c u t te r h as b e e n at p a in s to s h o w th e t e m p le ’ s stru c tu re a n d d e c o ra t io n in s o m e d e ta il. W e m a y n o te th e t w o o u t e r m o s t p illa rs o n th e ir ra ise d p o d iu m , a n d , a b o v e a ll, th e re p re s e n ta tio n o f a rc h ite c tu ra l s c u lp tu re d fig u r e s o n b o th p e d im e n t a n d a c ro te ria . T h e p e d im e n t c o n ta in s f iv e fig u re s ,

50

g r a d u a te d in size ; th e la rg e st o n e , th a t in th e m id d le , h as b e e n id e n t ifie d w it h M a rs . O n th e to p o f th e r o o f, w it h s o m e d a rin g , th e a rtist has p la c e d a fo u r h o rs e c h a rio t, in th e fro n ta l p o s itio n . F la n k in g it are t w o fig u re s still r e c o g n iz a b le as W in g e d V ic to rie s , sh ield s ra ise d a lo ft , w h ile at th e e d g e o f th e c o p in g o n e ith e r sid e y e t m o re fig u re s can b e seen, in v ig o r o u s l y a c tiv e p o stu re s. Y e t fo r th e e v a lu a tio n o f th is c o in th e o v e r a ll c o m p o s itio n is, s u re ly , th e m o st im p o r ta n t fa c to r. Its h ig h le v e l o f a rtistic a c h ie v e m e n t p lac es it s e c u re ly a m o n g th e h isto ric a l scu lp tu re s o f t h e j u l i o C la u d ia n p e rio d , as re g a rd s b o th its a ctu a l fig u re s a n d th e s ty le o f e x e c u t io n w h ic h it re v e a ls. N o t e th e w a y in w h ic h th e fig u re s a re a rra n g e d in p a ra lle l p lan e s a g a in st a n e u tra l b a c k g r o u n d , so th a t th e l o w e r p a rt o f th e te m p le a n d th e b u ll a re b o th e c lip se d b y th e m . T h e h a n d lin g o f th e d r a p e r y is a lso sig n ific a n t. O t h e r sim ila r ch a ra cte ristic s c o u ld b e a d d u c e d . F in a lly , o b s e rv e th e g e n e ra l to n e o f th e sc u lp tu re d fig u re s (w h ic h , in c id e n ta lly , co n stitu te o n e o f th e ea rliest k n o w n e x a m p le s o f h isto ric a l r e l ie f o n a R o m a n c o in ) ; it b e lo n g s to th e h ig h H e lle n is tic tra d itio n .

io

C L A U D IU S

(a d

41-54)

O bv. T I C L A V D C A E S A R A V G G E R M P M T R I B P O T P P . H ead o f Claudius, w ith laurelw reath , facing r. R e v . A G R I P P I N A E A V G V S T A E . B u st o f A g rip ­ pina, draped, and w ea rin g a w reath o f corn-ears, facin g r. N ap les, M us. N az. Fiorelli 4 2 6 1. Aureus.

Cohen 3 ; R I C I, p. 13 4 , no. 92, pi. V , 9 1 ; Lange, pi. 3 8 ; Grant, figs on pp. 33 and 36.

C la u d iu s w a s b o r n at L y o n s in a d 1 0 , th e so n o f th e e ld e r D ru s u s a n d th e y o u n g e r A n t o n ia ; h e w a s a c c la im e d E m p e r o r in 4 1 b y th e P ra e to ria n G u a r d , o n th e d e ath o f his n e p h e w C a lig u la . H e w a s f i f t y o n e at th e tim e . T h u s h is p u b lic c a re e r b e g a n late, a n d h e d ie d in a d 54 at th e a g e o f s ix t y - f o u r . H e h a d a son , B r ita n n ic u s , b y h is w if e M e s sa lin a ; th e b o y w a s s u b se q u e n tly m u rd e re d b y h is h a lf-b r o th e r N e r o , th e son o f C la u d iu s ’ s last w ife , A g r ip p in a . T h e sp e c im e n r e p ro d u c e d h e re ca rries th e lik e ­ nesses o f b o th C la u d iu s a n d A g r ip p in a , o b v e rs e an d re v e rse . T h o u g h w e c a n n o t b e su re th at b o th p o rtra its w e r e th e w o r k o f th e sam e d ie -c u tte r, t h e y n e v e rth e le ss r e v e a l an id e n tic a l n a tu ra listic a p p ro a c h . C la u d iu s (d e sp ite th e fa c t th a t h is lik en esses ta k e n o a c c o u n t o f a d v a n c in g a g e w it h th e yea rs) is d r a w n w it h g r e a t re a lism a n d s im p lic ity , d is p la y in g all th e fe a tu re s w e k n o w to h a v e b e e n ch a ra c te ristic o f h im , c h ie f a m o n g s t th e m th e r e tre a tin g C la u d ia n ch in . S o m e o f h is e x t a n t c o in -p o rt ra it s s h o w o b v io u s id e a liz a tio n , in th e h ig h H e lle n is tic m a n n e r. O th e rs in d u lg e in a n e a r-g ro te s q u e e x a g g e r a t io n o f th o se p h y s ic a l d e fe c ts m e n tio n e d in th e a n c ien t sou rces. T h is p a rtic u la r d ie , h o w e v e r , is c h a ra c te riz e d b y a m o o d o f stern c o m p o s u re . T h e artist h as g iv e n us th e h e a d o f a m a tu re (b u t n e ith e r sen ile n o r fla b b y ) m a n : g a u n t, sere n e , th e s o lid it y o f th e b o n e -

52

s tru c tu re m o st a p p a re n t in th at p o w e r fu l o rb ita l rid g e . T h e d ie -c u t te r ’ s sk ill a n d d e lic a c y in re lie fw o r k s h o w th ro u g h in th e s u b tly v ib r a n t tre a tm e n t o f th e m o u th a n d th e area im m e d ia te ly s u rro u n d in g it, o n w h ic h h e seem s to h a v e m a in ly c o n c e n tra te d his in te rp re t a t iv e talen ts.

ii

C L A U D IU S ( AD41-54)

O lw . T I C L A V D C A E S A R A V G G E R M P M T R I B P O T P P. H ead o f Claudius, w ith laurelw reath , facing r. R e v. A G R I P P I N A E A V G V S T A E . B u st o f A g rip ­ pina, draped, and w ea rin g a w reath o f corn-ears, facin g r. N aples, M us. N az. Fiorelli 4 2 6 1. A ureus.

Cohen 3 ; R I C I, p. 13 4 , no. 92, pi. V , 9 1. A g r ip p in a , th e d a u g h t e r o f G e rm a n ic u s a n d th e e ld e r A g r ip p in a , w a s b o rn in a d 1 5 in th e trib a l c a p ita l o f th e U b ii, s u b se q u e n tly re n a m e d C o lo n ia A g r ip p e n s is a fte r h e r, an d k n o w n to d a y as C o lo g n e . H e r first h u sb a n d w a s G n . D o m itiu s A h e n o b a rb u s , b y w h o m she h a d N e r o ; in 49 she m a rrie d C la u d iu s a n d she d ie d in $9 , at th e a g e o f fo r t y - fo u r . It has n o t p r o v e d p o ssib le to esta b lish a secu re ic o n o g r a p h y fo r h e r s c u lp tu re d p o rtra its , b u t th o se p re se rv e d o n co in s c la r ify th e s itu a tio n u p to a p o in t ; at least c e rta in ty p e s ca n n o w b e id e n t ifie d fr o m th e m . T h e e x a m p le r e p ro d u c e d w a s s tru c k b y th e R o m e m in t. It re p a y s s tu d y b o th o n a c c o u n t o f its te c h n ic a l e x e c u t io n a n d fo r th e p a r t ic u la r ly v iv id w a y in w h ic h th e sitte r’ s fe a tu re s h a v e b e e n p o r tr a y e d . In b o th resp e cts it d iffe rs m a r k e d ly fr o m o th e r m o r e o r less c o n t e m p o r a r y c o in -p o rt ra it s - e.g. th a t o f A n ­ to n ia A u g u s ta , also re p ro d u c e d in th is v o lu m e (P late 15 ) . T h e h a irs ty le is still b a s ic a lly o f th e C la u d ia n ty p e ; b u t i f w e c o m p a r e it w it h th at a ssu m ed b y th e e ld e r A g r ip p in a (P late 7) a n d A n t o n ia , th e v e r y s im ila r ity o f d e ta il (b o th A g r ip p in a a n d A n to n ia are w e a r in g a c o rn -e a r w re a th ) se rves to e m p h a siz e h o w m u c h m o r e n a tu ra listic its tre a tm e n t has b e c o m e . T h o u g h s im p le r th a n th at o f A g r ip p in a , it n e v e rth e ­ less retain s th e te n d rils o f h a ir o n th e te m p le s, a n d m a k e s e v e n m o r e o f th e chignon h a n g in g d o w n o v e r th e n a p e o f th e n e c k . B u t w h e re a s in th e e a rlie r

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p o rtra it th e h a ir g e n e r a lly is a rra n g e d in a m a n n e r w h ic h it w o u ld b e v e r y d iffic u lt to re p ro d u c e in rea l life , h ere its a rra n g e m e n t is p e rfe c tly n atu ra l and lo g ic a l. A c o m p a ris o n w it h th e p o rtra it o f A n to n ia in p a rtic u la r, so ch a ra c te ristic an e x a m p le o f tra d ­ itio n a l l o f t y n o b ilit y , h ig h lig h t s b y co n tra st th e p re se n t w o r k ’ s v i v i d l y n a tu ra listic a p p e a ra n c e , as e v id e n c e d in th e s tro n g tre a tm e n t o f th e p ro file , w it h its s h a rp -p o in te d n o se , p lu m p ch ee k s, a n d fu ll, m o b ile lip s. W h e n w e rela te th is d ie to th e g e n e ra l d e v e lo p m e n t o f c o in -p o r t r a it u r e d u rin g th e E m p ire , th ere ca n b e little d o u b t th at it d isp la y s th a t re c u rre n t tre n d to w a r d s n a tu ra lis m w h ic h k e e p s c r o p p in g u p in R o m a n a rt, a n d w h ic h at this p e rio d m u st be re­ g a rd e d as a re a c tio n ag ain st the classicism p re v a ilin g d u r in g T ib e r iu s ’ s re ig n .

12

C L A U D IU S ( a d 41- 54)

O bv. T I C L A V D I V S C A E S A R A V G P M T R P I M P P P . B are head o f Claudius, facin g 1. R e v . L I B E R T A S A V G V S T A . L ib erty standing, full-face, head turned to the r., arm s spread, h oldin g the pileum (cap o f liberty) in her r. hand, and flanked b y the letters S C . N ap les, M us. N az. Fiorelli 4 2 15 . As.

Cohen 4 7 ; R I C I, p. 130 , no. 69, pi. V III, 829; Gnecchi R I N , p. 374.

W e fin d L ib e r t y r e g u la r ly p e rso n ifie d o n th e asses s tru c k b y C la u d iu s , w h e r e she is g iv e n th e a p p e lla ­ tio n ‘ A u g u s t a ’ ; th is m o t i f fr e q u e n tly a p p e a rs o n R e p u b lic a n n o less th a n Im p e r ia l co in s. W e fin d h e r, c r o w n e d w it h V ic t o r y a n d in a quadriga (fo u r-h o rs e c h a r io t ), o n a d e n a riu s o f M . P o r ciu s L a e c a ( 1 2 0 b c ) . T h e e x a m p le re p ro d u c e d h e re also a p p e a rs o n th e r e v e rse o f a s o m e w h a t h y b r id issue s tru c k b y C a lig u la . T h is w a s n o t h e r last m e ta m o rp h o sis . B y G a lb a ’ s d a y (see P la te 28) she h ad b e c o m e L ib e rta s P u b lic a , o r L ib e rta s P o p u li R o m a n i, as w e ll as A u g u s ta ; she o c c u rs a g a in , in v a r io u s g u ises, o n th e co in s o f V e s p a s ia n , H a d ria n , a n d P e r t in a x , an d , w it h d im in is h in g fr e q u e n c y , o n still la te r issues. T h is sp e c im e n , e x e c u t e d b y a s o m e w h a t in ­ d iffe re n t d ie -c u t te r, b e lo n g s to th e e a r ly p a rt o f C la u d iu s ’ s re ig n . T h e em p h a sis p la c e d o n th e m o n o ­ g r a m o f th e S e n a te , S C , can h a r d ly b e m isse d (S e n atu s C o n s u lt o , b y d e c re e o f th e S e n a te ). S u c h e x c e p t io n a l p r o m in e n c e w a s n o t n o r m a lly g iv e n to th e S e n a te ’ s d e v ic e , th o u g h it is a t y p ic a l fe a tu re o f all b ase issues d u r in g this p e rio d . It w o r k s to th e d e trim e n t o f a n y fig u re s o n th e c o in w h e r e it a p p e a rs ; t h e y lo o k p u n y a n d u n im p o rta n t b y

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c o m p a riso n . F u r th e r m o r e , th o u g h th e re p re se n ta ­ tio n o f th e g o d d e s s re v e a ls a c e rta in flu id d e lic a c y o f tre a tm e n t as re g a rd s h e r d r a p e r y , its o v e r a ll e x e c u ­ tio n is d e c id e d ly p o o r. T h e fo ld o f h e r ro b e , w h ic h L ib e r t y sh ak es o u t as she e x te n d s h e r r ig h t a rm , pileum in h an d , is re p resen te d in such a w a y that it c o u ld e a s ily b e m ista k e n fo r s o m e so rt o f s h o u ld e rsash. In d e e d , e v e r y asp e ct o f th e fig u r e re v e a ls te c h n ic a l in c o m p e te n c e - n o te th e s tiffly w o o d e n lin e o f th e r ig h t le g , n o t to m e n tio n th e to o n a r r o w h ip s a n d u n d e rsiz e d breasts. T h e r e is m o r e th an a s u g g e s tio n o f a rc h a iz in g in flu e n c e h e r e ; th e h a ir­ sty le , fo r e x a m p le , lo o k s lik e a r e v e rsio n to th e m o d e w h ic h w e n t o u t w it h C la u d iu s (cf. P la te 15 ) .

13

C L A U D IU S ( a d 41-54)

O bv. T I C L A V D I V S C A E S A R A V G P M T R P I M P P P. B are head o f C lau dius, facing 1. R ev. M in e rva, standing, facing r., w ith helm et and aegis, her 1. hand grasping a shield, her raised r. hand brandishing a spear, flanked b y the letters S C . N aples, M us. N az. Fioretti 4224. A s.

Cohen 84; R 1 C I, p. 12 , no. 66, pi. V II I , 1 3 0 ; Bernhart, p. 50. A g a in s t th is c o in ’ s b a re b a c k g r o u n d th e g o d d e ss stands in e m b a ttle d m a je st y , fu lly a rm e d , lik e A th e n e P r o m a c h o s o r th e w a r r io r s th at fo r m so fa m ilia r a m o t i f in G r e e k a rt : o n e ith e r side o f h e r are t w o la r g e letters, S C , s y m b o lic o f S e n a to ria l a u th o rity . B y th e e n d o f th e R e p u b lic , a n d p e rsistin g u n d e r th e E m p ir e , R o m a n r e lig io n h a d c o m e to id e n t ify M in e r v a w it h A th e n a as G o d d e ss o f V ic t o r y ; a n d it is n o t, th e re fo re , s u rp ris in g to fin d h e r a ssu m in g th e G r e e k d e it y ’ s a p p e a ra n c e a n d a ttrib u te s o n R o m a n co in s. E v e n d u r in g th e H e lle n is tic p e rio d , th o u g h th is g e n e ra l c o n c e p t w a s fa it h fu lly p re se rv e d fr o m a g e to a g e , it n e v e rth e le ss u n d e r w e n t su b tle m o d i­ fic a tio n s in th e co u rse o f tra n sm issio n . S u c c e ss iv e ch a n g e s o f s ty le a n d taste le ft th e ir m a r k o n it a n d th e v e r s io n r e p r o d u c e d h e re ( w h ic h dates fr o m a d 4 1 ) h as ta k e n o n th e c h a ra c te ristic fla v o u r o f th e a rc h a iz in g m o v e m e n t. T h is sty lis tic tre n d h a d a w id e s p re a d in flu e n c e o n all d e c o r a t iv e a rt o f th e J u l io - C la u d ia n era , a n d is c le a r ly d is c e rn ib le in th e fig u r e p o r t r a y e d h ere : n o t m e r e ly in th e d e ta ile d tre a tm e n t o f th e d r a p e r y n o te th o se h e a v y h a n g in g fo ld s v is ib le b e n e a th th e a eg is - a n d th e ch a ra c te ristic w a y in w h ic h th e g o d -

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d e ss’ s fin e ro b e is a rra n g e d , b u t also in h e r v e r y p o stu re , stiffly u p r ig h t, o n th e b alls o f h er feet. Y e t th o u g h o u r d ie -c u tte r has fo llo w e d c o n ­ t e m p o r a r y taste (he e v e n a tte m p ts to re p ro d u c e that a lm o s t d a n c in g r h y t h m w h ic h th e sty le o f th e d a y im p o s e d ), h e has q u ite fa ile d to a c h ie v e th e e le g a n tly d e c o ra t iv e id e a l it re p resen te d . W h a t this b lo w n an d fle s h y M in e r v a in fa c t p re se rv e s - a p p a re n t e v e n b e h in d h e r s ty liz a tio n à la mode - is a lin g e r in g , v ib r a n t h in t o f th e m a id e n w a r r io r she o n c e h ad b een .

14

C L A U D IU S ( a d 41-54)

Obv. T I C L A V D C A E S A R A V G P M T R P I I I I . H ead o f C lau dius, w ea rin g lau rel-w reath and facin g r. R ev. I M P E R R E C E P T inscribed across the represen­ tation o f a Praetorian cam p. In the m iddle a soldier is visible, w ith the standard behind h im and a spear in his hand. N ap les, M us. N az. C o ll. Stevens 12 7 5 3 2 . A ureus.

C f. Fioretti, 4 2 3 8 ; Cohen 4 3 - 4 4 ; R I C I, p. 12 5 , no. 2 4 ; A .A lfö ld i, ‘ Insignien und T rach t der R ö in . K a iser’ , in Röm . M itt. (19 3 5 ), pp. 1 - 1 7 1 , pi. X V , 1 - 3 . A lfö ld i (pp. 96-7) interprets the central structure as the cam p ’ s place o f w orsh ip, and the fig u re as the dea militaris.

The aureus reproduced here, with its detailed and skilful representation o f a Praetorian camp, alludes in general terms to the excellent relationship be­ tween Claudius and the Praetorians; it may also, as M attingly believes, commemorate some specific occasion when the Emperor spent a night in camp with them. This secondary interpretation is sug­ gested by the inscription, which the artist, with felicitous ingenuity, has inserted along the upper part o f the wall, like a frieze. The view o f the camp presented here is for amusement rather than instruction. The die-cutter has, in fact, restricted him self to a purely conven­ tional evocation, as usual with such scenes. Within these limits, however, he has worked very freely, balking at no obstacle in the effort to include every detail which his theme requires. Thus he has made the camp circular because it is easier to represent in such a w ay. The part o f the wall at the back which would normally be invisible has been elevated above the rest, not by a gradual, pro­ gressive convergence o f outline, as we might expect, but by simply reducing it to a pair o f lateral 60

blocks, with the praetorium towering between them. Amid the general illogicality o f such a presen­ tation he has, notwithstanding, expended much careful accuracy on the description o f individual details. His rear wall, just like that in the foreground, is shown properly squared off, while their pairs o f postern-gates correspond, thus following the nor­ mal camp lay-out, which made a square cross o f the via decumana and the via principalis, and put a posterngate at each end o f both. The internal composition o f this scene has other amusing qualities, in particular the striking dis­ crepancy o f proportion between its various com­ ponent parts. The troops’ quarters are solid enough, but barely higher than the w all; the praetorium, with its eagle-topped standard, is enormous by comparison, and the sentry guarding it a colossus. This is an enjoyable example o f popular art, which retains all the freshness and gusto o f a child’s drawing.

15

C L A U D IU S ( a d 41-54)

O bv. A N T O N I A A V G V S T A . B u st o f the yo u n g er A n tonia, facing r., and w earin g a w reath o f corn-ears. R ev. C O N S T A N T I A E A V G V S T I . A ntonia as Constantia, standing full-face, w ith a torch in her r. hand and a cornucopia in her 1. N ap les, M us. N az. C o ll. Stevens 1 2 7 5 17 . A ureus.

Cohen 1 - 2 ; R I C I, p. 1 3 1 , no. 80, pi. V , 95. T h e y o u n g e r A n to n ia , b o r n 36 b c , w a s th e sister o f th e e ld e r A n to n ia (b o rn 39), and th e m o th e r o f C la u d iu s . S h e h e r s e lf w a s th e o ffs p rin g o f M a r k A n t o n y ’ s m a r r ia g e to O c ta v ia . S h e d ie d , at an a d ­ v a n c e d a g e , d u r in g th e re ig n o f h e r g ra n d s o n C a lig u la , w h o h o n o u r e d h e r m e m o r y b y m a k in g th e S e n a te b e s to w o n h e r th e title o f A u g u s ta , as h ad a lr e a d y b e e n d o n e in L iv i a ’ s case. T h e sp e c im e n s h o w n h e re dates fr o m th e r e ig n o f C la u d iu s , w h o s tru c k it as a p o s th u m o u s issue so o n a fte r h is acce ssio n . It p o r tr a y s A n to n ia as a y o u n g w o m a n , a n d c o n fir m s th e tra d itio n o f h e r re m a r k ­ a b le b e a u t y . O n th e o th e r h a n d it is c le a r ly m u c h id e a liz e d , e v e n s o m e w h a t fr ig id an d a c a d e m ic , in w h ic h it refle cts th e n e o -c la s sic iz in g tre n d o f th e J u l io - C la u d ia n e p o c h . T h e h a irs ty le a c c u ra te ly refle cts c o n t e m p o r a r y taste an d fa sh io n . It is a rra n g e d in c o n tra s tin g p lan e s, v e r t ic a l a n d h o riz o n ta l : w a v e s o f h a ir fa llin g fr o m th e c r o w n o f th e h e a d are o ffset b y o th e rs d r a w n b a c k o f f th e fo re h e a d (u n d e r th at c lo s e - w o v e n w r e a t h o f c o rn -e a rs) a n d k n o tt e d in to a h e a v y chignon a b o v e th e n a p e o f th e n e c k . T h e re v e rse , to o , e x e m p lifie s a tre n d h ig h ly c h a ra c te ristic o f R o m a n Im p e ria l s o c ie ty . H e re A n to n ia assu m es th e s y m b o lic ro le o f A u g u sti C onstantia, this p e rso n ific a tio n re c u rs o n co in s o f C la u d iu s a n d o th e r m e m b e rs o f th e fa m ily . In th e

62

e x a m p le s h o w n h e re C o n sta n tia , e v e n as re g a rd s s p e c ific ty p e s o f a ttrib u te , c o m e s v e r y clo se to th e n o r m a l re p re s e n ta tio n o f C e re s - w h o w o u ld see m , inter alia, to h a v e w o r n th e sam e c o rn -e a r w r e a th as a d o rn s A n t o n ia ’ s h ea d o n th e o b v e rs e . O th e r co in s o f C la u d iu s s h o w h e r w it h c lo a k , h e lm e t a n d sp ear ; o n s o m e sp e c im e n s she is seated . T h e r e a re n u m e ro u s p o rtra it-b u sts o f A n to n ia in e x is te n c e , a n d it is lik e ly th at she also a p p ea rs o n th e A r a P a d s , a c c o m p a n ie d b y h er h u sb a n d D ru s u s , w h o w a lk s b esid e h e r, his h an d in th at o f a sm all ch ild .

i6

N E R O ( a d 54-68)

O bv. A G R I P P A V G D I V I C L A V D N E R O N I S C A E S M A T E R . Busts o f N e ro and A grip p in a, face to face. R ev. N E R O [ N I ] C L A V D D I V I F C A E S A V G G E R M I M P T R P. O a k -le a f cro w n , w ith the letters E X S C inside it. N aples, M us. N az . Fiorelli 4308. Aureus.

Cohen 6 - 7 ; R I C I, p. 14 5, no. 9, pi. I X , 13 9 ; see H. M attingly, Roman Coins, for typological parallels.

T ib e r iu s C la u d iu s N e r o C a e s a r A u g u s tu s G e r m a n i­ cus su c c e e d e d C la u d iu s , o n the la t te r’s d e ath , th an k s to th e in trig u e s o f h is m o th e r, A g r ip p in a , w h o g o t h im a c c la im e d E m p e r o r b y th e P ra e to ria n s o n 13 O c t o b e r , a d $4 . T h is acclamatio w a s su b se q u e n tly c o n fir m e d , w it h o u t a n y d iffic u lty , b y th e S e n a te . T h e y e a r 54, th e re fo re , w a s w h e n A g r ip p in a r e a lly c o n s o lid a te d h e r p o w e r a n d a u th o r ity . T h is a p p lie d n o less to h e r d e a lin g s w it h h e r so n th an to h e r re la tio n s w it h th e S e n a te ; th e c o in s h o w n h e re is c le a r p r o o f o f it. F o r th e firs t tim e in th e h is to r y o f th e E m p ir e , th e p o r tr a it o f a w o m a n b e lo n g in g to th e Im p e ria l fa m ily w a s re p ro d u c e d d u r in g h er life t im e , sid e b y side w it h th at o f th e E m p e r o r h im s e lf, a n d a c c o m ­ p a n ie d b y b o th th e ir a p p ro p ria t e titles. N o t th at this p r iv ile g e laste d v e r y lo n g . A ft e r a fe w m o n th s w e fin d A g r ip p in a ’ s titles r e le g a te d to a s e c o n d a ry p o s itio n o n th e re v e rse . Q u ite a p a rt fr o m su ch p u r e ly h isto ric a l c o n sid e ra ­ tio n s, th is sp e c im e n is m o st in te re s tin g fr o m th e v ie w p o in t o f t y p o lo g ic a l c la ssific a tio n a n d s ty listic tre a tm e n t. T h e d e v ic e o f th e fa c e -to -fa c e d o u b le p o rtra it h a d in fa c t a lr e a d y a p p e a re d o n s o m e R e p u b lic a n co in s, a n d w a s to b e c o m e a c h a ra c te r­ istic fe a tu re o f th e s trik in g series o f m e d a llio n s p r o d u c e d d u r in g th e th ird c e n tu r y a d . B u t th e

64

m o st n o t e w o r t h y fe a tu re h ere , u n d o u b t e d ly , is th e w a y th e artist has s h o w n b o th m o th e r a n d son a b o u t th e sam e a g e , o r as n e a r as m a k e s n o d iffe re n c e . H is p o rtra it o f A g r ip p in a , h o w e v e r , rem a in s s o m e w h a t f o r m a l; p e rh a p s this a tte m p t at re ju v e n a t io n c r a m p e d h is s ty le . T h e o n ly to u c h o f in d iv id u a l c h a ra c te riz a tio n is in th e h a irs ty le , ty p ic a l o f the C la u d ia n p e rio d , w it h its h e a v y p laits o v e r th e ears, a n d th a t lo o p e d - b a c k b ra id e d c h ig n o n ly in g o n the n a p e o f th e n e c k (cf. P la te 1 $ ) . I c o n o g r a p h ic a lly s p e a k in g , th e p o rtra it o f th e y o u n g N e r o is a fa r m o r e fa ith fu l lik en ess. T h is b o y c le a rly re v e a ls th e princeps-, n o te th e fu ll, ro u n d e d ch in ( fo re s h a d o w in g th e e n g o r g e d d e w la p w h ic h h e la te r d e v e lo p e d ) , the s o ftly w e a k m o u th , the e y e fix e d in a fie rce u n w a v e r in g stare b en e ath th at h e a v y b r o w .

17

NERO

(a d

54-68)

O bv. A G R I P P A V G D I V I C L A V D N E R O N I S C A E S M A T E R . Busts o f N e ro and A g rip p in a, face to face. R ev. N E R O [ N I ] C L A V D D I V I F C A E S A V G G E R M I M P T R P. O a k -le a f c ro w n , w ith the letters E X S C inside it. N ap les, M us. N az. Fioretti 4308. A ureus.

Cohen 6 - 7 ; R I C I, p. 14 5 , no. 9, pi. I X , 139 .

T h e re v e rs e o f th e c o in w e h a v e ju s t e x a m in e d dis­ p la y s a m o t i f n o t u n c o m m o n o n R o m a n c u rre n c y , th e o a k - le a f c r o w n . T h is also o c c u rs w it h so m e fr e q u e n c y in s c u lp tu re a n d r e lie f- w o r k , as a d e c o ra ­ tiv e fe a tu re c h a ra c te ristic o f c e rta in ty p e s o f m o n u ­ m e n t, th o u g h its s ig n ific a n c e v a rie s . T h e o a k w r e a th o n th e sp e c im e n r e p ro d u c e d h e re c o m b in e s n a t u r a lly w it h th e le tte rin g o f th e in sc rip tio n to m a k e a b a la n c e d c o m p o s itio n : th e se rra te d o a k le a v e s a re cu t in h ig h r e lie f a lo n g th e ir ce n tre , a n d g r a d e d d o w n o n e ith e r side, so th at th e letters b e c o m e a n in te g ra l p a rt o f th e d e sig n . In th e m id d le , p r o m in e n t ly d is p la y e d , w e fin d th e m o n o g r a m E X S C (ex Senatus consutto), ‘ B y d e c re e o f th e S e n a te ’ , h e re as a u th o riz a tio n fo r th e issue. O th e r co n s id e ra ­ tio n s a p a rt, th e m e re p re se n c e o f su ch a d e v ic e o n N e r o ’ s g o ld c o in s (c o m p a re th e r e v e rse o f th e a u reu s s h o w n o n P la te 18 ) has h isto ric a l a n d p o litic a l s ig n ific a n c e w h ic h sh o u ld c e rta in ly n o t b e o v e r ­ lo o k e d . U n d e r th e E m p ir e it w a s n o r m a lly u sed as a g u a ra n te e o r e n d o rs e m e n t o n b ro n z e co in s o n ly ; it d o es n o t a p p e a r o n e ith e r g o ld o r silv e r. T h is has le d so m e sch o la rs to c o n c lu d e th at th e S e n a te h ad th e r ig h t , a n d th e d u t y , to m in t b ro n z e d e n o m in a ­ tio n s, w h ile th e c o in in g o f s ilv e r a n d g o ld w a s u n d e r th e d ire c t s u p e rv is io n o f th e E m p e r o r h im s e lf. In p o in t o f fa c t th e e x iste n c e o f su ch a c o n s titu tio n ­ al a r r a n g e m e n t n o w seem s h ig h ly u n lik e ly ; v a rio u s

66

o b stac le s h a v e tu rn e d u p w h ic h a ll a rg u e a g ain st it. B u t in a n y case th e p re se n ce o f th e S e n a to ria l sta m p o n N e r o ’ s g o ld c o in a g e is q u ite e a sily a c c o u n te d fo r. D u r in g th e first p a rt o f th e y o u n g E m p e r o r ’ s re ig n , b e t w e e n 54 a n d 6 3 , w h e n h e h ad n o t y e t a tta in ed his m a jo r it y a n d w a s still re sp o n sib le to g u a rd ia n s , th e S e n a te ’ s a u th o r ity w a s , fo r a w h ile , p a r a m o u n t ; it w o u l d c e rta in ly ru n to th e a u th o riz a tio n o f g o ld issues.

i8

N E R O ( a d 54-68)

O bv. N E R O CLAVD D IV I F C A E S A V G G E R M I M P T R P C O S . Superim posed double portraits o f N e ro and A grip p in a, facing r. R ev. A G R I P P A V G D I V I [ C L A V D N E R O N I S ] M A T E R . Q u ad riga d raw n b y elephants, facing 1. Seated in it tw o deified figures, identified va riou sly as A ugustus and C lau dius, or A ugustu s and L ivia. In the field, E X S C . N ap les, M us. N az. C o ll. Stevens 12 7 5 2 4 . Aureus.

Cohen 3 - 4 ; R I C 1, p. 14 5 , no. io , pi. I X , 140. L ik e th e p r e v io u s g o ld p ie c e , this c o in h as a d o u b le p o r tr a it o f N e r o a n d A g r ip p in a o n its o b v e rs e . B u t w h e re a s o n th e a u reu s re p ro d u c e d o n P la te 1 6 th e t w o a re fa c e to fa ce , h e re th e d ie -c u tte r h as s h o w n th e m b o th lo o k in g in th e sam e d ire c tio n , o n e a little b e h in d th e o th e r. N o r is th e d iffe re n c e lim ite d to this e x t e r n a l asp e ct ; it e x te n d s to th e a ctu al m a n n e r o f p o r tr a y a l. Q u ite c le a r ly th ere is fa r less d e ta ile d in d iv id u a lis m o f tre a tm e n t h e re th an in th e o th e r jo in t p o rtra it. W h a t w e a re c o n fr o n te d w ith in this seco n d e x a m p le is n o t so m u c h t w o c le a rly d e lin ­ eated in d iv id u a ls as a p a ir o f g e n e ra liz e d fig u re h e a d s ; it is as th o u g h th e d ie -c u t te r ’ s a tte n tio n h a d b een w h o l l y a b s o rb e d b y th e te ch n ica l p ro b le m s in v o lv e d in m a k in g o n e p r o file o v e r la p th e o th e r. Y e t d e sp ite th e d iffe re n c e s b e t w e e n th e m , th e t w o issues u n d o u b t e d ly h a v e m a n y e x t e rn a l fe atu res in c o m m o n ; e n o u g h , in d e e d , to s u g g e s t th at b o th dies m ig h t c o n c e iv a b ly h a v e b e e n p re p a re d b y th e sam e a rtist. S u c h s im ila ritie s o f d e ta il in c lu d e A g r ip p in a ’ s ro b e , th e tr e a tm e n t o f N e r o ’ s h a ir a n d , d e sp ite d iffe re n c e s o f to rs io n an d b a la n c e , th e g e n e ra l te c h n ic a l e x e c u t io n o f h is p o r tr a it in e ith e r case. B u t

68

w h e n w e p ro c e e d to a n a ly z e th em in clo se d e ta il on p o in ts o f sty le , h o w e v e r , such a h y p o th e sis w ill n o lo n g e r h o ld u p . W h a t d o es e m e rg e , in fa ct, is th at th e p resen t s p e c im e n (d a ta b le to 54 o r 55) s h o w s a m a rk e d te ch n ica l in fe r io r it y to its p re d ec esso r. T h e t w o p ro file s a re fa r stiffe r, m o r e sh a rp ly d e fin e d , w it h an u n re a l h a rd e n in g a n d o v e r-e m p h a s is o f lin e. T h e a r ra n g e m e n t o f th e h a ir, th o u g h s im ila r, is fa r less n a tu ra l a n d rea listic. A b o v e a ll, this c o in w h o l l y la c k s th e se n sitiv e y e t v ig o r o u s m o d e llin g w h ic h c o n trib u te s so m u c h to th e life lik e a p p e a ra n c e o f th e p r e v io u s d e sig n .

19

N E R O ( a d 54-68)

O bv. I M P N E R O C A E S A R A V G P O N T IF M A X T R I B P O T P P. H ead o f N e ro , laurelw reathed, facing r., resting on a globe. R e v . T h e E m p ero r, accom panied b y the P refect o f the Praetorian G uard, stands on a dais, facing 1., and addresses the troops. In the b ack gro u n d is a b u ildin g, perhaps a portico. O n either side the letters S C ; in the exergu e A D L O C V T C O H [o rtiu m ]. N aples, M us. N az. Fioretti 4359. Sestertius.

R I C I, p. 15 0 , no. 69.

T h e sestertiu s r e p ro d u c e d h ere s h o w s an ‘ ad d ress to th e t r o o p s ’ . A s is w e l l - k n o w n , th is th e m e rec u rs fr e q u e n t ly b o th o n co in s a n d o n h isto ric a l re lie fs o f R o m a n o r ig in . W it h su ch th e m a tic u n ifo r m it y , an d su b sta n tia lly s im ila r g r o u p in g in e v e r y case, th e m a in in te re st o f th e c o in s lies in th e v a ria tio n s t h e y d is p la y , w h e t h e r o f p re se n ta tio n , o r te c h n iq u e , o r e v e n in th e c o n c e p t fr o m w h ic h th e scen e d r a w s its in itia l in sp ira tio n . W h e n set b e sid e th e fie r y e m o t io n a lis m w h ic h seem s to a n im a te th e adlocutio p o r t r a y e d o n a c o in su ch as th e sestertiu s o f G a lb a (P late 26 ), th e p re se n t scen e a p p e a rs re stra in e d e n o u g h b y c o m p a riso n . It is set, n o t in an o p e n sp ace, b u t a g a in st th e c lo sed b a c k g r o u n d o f a p o r tic o , w h ic h is r e p ro d u c e d in v e r y l o w re lie f, a n d m o r e o r less p a ra lle l to th e fig u re s. T h e fig u r e s th e m se lv e s, as th o u g h to su g g e s t th e im p re ss io n o f a c r o w d , are s h o w n w it h v e r y little a tte m p t at d e p th o r p e rsp e c tiv e . T h e E m p e r o r , w it h th e P re fe c t in a tte n d a n c e , an d w e a r in g a lo n g to g a (ra th er th an th e m ilit a r y

70

u n ifo r m o n e m ig h t h a v e e x p e c te d in the c irc u m ­ stances), stands o n a ra ised p la t fo rm an d h a ra n g u e s th e a r m y , h ere s y m b o liz e d b y th ree sold iers. B o t h s p e a k e r an d a u d ie n c e , in a c c o rd a n c e w it h th e g e n e ra l to n e o f th e c o m p o s itio n , a re g iv e n a static q u a lity , d e sp ite th e n a tu ra listic poses w h ic h ch a r­ a cte rize th e scen e a n d are re sp o n sib le fo r its a n im a ­ tio n . T h e E m p e r o r h im s e lf is s h o w n in th e classic stan ce o f th e o r a t o r ; th e P ra e to ria n P r e fe c t ’ s a ttitu d e is m o r e fr e e ly c o n c e iv e d . B u t w h a t p resen ts a s trik in g co n tra st to b o th o f th e m is the little g r o u p o f so ld ie rs, so n a tu ra l a n d fu ll o f life d e sp ite th eir static p o stu re . N o t e th e w a y in w h ic h th e s o ld ie r at th e b a c k is lin k e d to th e m a n in fro n t o f h im , th e fa m ilia r g e s tu re w it h w h ic h h e rests o n e h a n d o n his c o m r a d e ’ s s h o u ld e r ; a n d h o w th is m a n , in tu rn , has h is h a n d o n his sh o rt s w o r d , so th at h is c lo a k rid es u p o n h is th ig h , a g a in , a n a tu ra l a n d life -lik e to u ch .

20

N ERO (A D

5 4 -68)

O bv. N E R O C L A V D C A E S A R A V G G E R M P M T R P I M P P P. H ead o f N e ro , w ith laurelw reath , facing. R ev. D E C V R S I O . N e ro , in his capacity as Princeps luventutis, g allo p in g to the r., w ith spear couched, and fo llo w e d b y another horsem an bearing a standard; on either side o f them the tw o letters S C . N ap les, M us. N az. Fiorelli 4409. Sestertius.

Cohen 84; R I C 1, p. 1 3 2 , pi. X I , 7.

T h e fin e N e r o n ia n sestertiu s re p ro d u c e d h ere s h o w s t w o h o rs e m e n at th e g a ll o p ; th e le g e n d D ecursio e x p la in s e x a c t ly w h a t is g o in g on . L ik e o th e r s im ila r sp e c im e n s issu ed b y H a d ria n , this c o in refers to c e rta in m o u n te d m a n o e u v re s p e r fo r m e d b y th e c a v a lr y , as a m ilit a r y e x e rc is e o r m o c k -e x e r c is e , d u rin g th e G a m e s at th e C ir c u s , u n d e r th e lea d ersh ip o f th e Princeps lu ven tu tis. O n s o m e co in s s tru c k b y M a rc u s A u r e liu s , in fa c t, a lm o s t id e n tic a l g r o u p s o f h o rs e m e n a re a c c o m p a n ie d b y th e in sc rip tio n P R I N C I V V E N T . W h e n w e tu rn to s c u lp tu re , w e fin d th at th e b ase o f th e c o lu m n e re c te d in h o n o u r o f A n to n in u s P iu s a n d F au stin a co n ta in s, o n o n e side, a c o m p le te re p re s e n ta tio n o f su ch a decursio in a c tio n . T h e a rtist, n o t c o n te n t w it h p o r t r a y in g t w o iso la te d rid e rs, h ad m a d e an a tte m p t to c o n v e y th e scen e as a w h o le . N o fe w e r th an se v e n te e n h o rs e m e n a re g a llo p in g in a c irc le r o u n d a g r o u p o f le g io n ­ aries. A s a c o m p o s itio n th is c e rta in ly has th e m e rit o f a u d a c ity . T h e th e m e , in fa c t, has a lo n g h is to r y in a n c ien t a rt o f e v e r y p e r io d , a nd o u r d ie -c u tte r h as n o t v e n -

72

tu re d b e y o n d th e c o n v e n tio n a l p a tte rn w h ic h tra d itio n p re sc rib e d . In p a rtic u la r, h is t w o h o rse m e n e c h o ty p e s o f fre q u e n t o c c u rre n c e o n T a re n tin e co in s o f S o u th Ita ly . B u t i f th e artist has p ro d u c e d n o o r ig in a l in n o v a tio n s , h is w o r k is n ev e rth eless d istin g u ish e d b y u n u s u a lly p re cise e x e c u t io n , an d b y th e l iv e l y e le g a n c e w h ic h h e lav ish e s o n v a rio u s details. N o t e , fo r in stan c e, th e h o rs e ’ s h ea d (those g a p in g ja w s , th at fie r y e y e ), th e p o s itio n in g o f its r id e r ’s le g s, an d , in g e n e ra l, th e s u b tle ty w it h w h ic h ea ch h o r s e m a n ’ s in d iv id u a l ch a ra c te r has b e e n b r o u g h t o u t.

2i

N ERO

(ad

54-68)

O bv. N E R O C L A V D I V S C A E S A R A V G G E R P M T R P I M P P P . H ead o f N e ro , w ith laurelw reath , facing r. R ev. A N N O N A A V G V S T I C E R E S . T h e go d ­ dess C eres seated facing L, w ith a torch in her 1. hand, w h ile her outstretched r. hand holds a corn-ear. B efo re her stands the personified figu re o f A nnona, the cornucopia (horn o f plenty) in her 1. hand, her r. hand resting on her hip. In the centre is a garlanded altar, w ith the modius (a corn-m easure ro u g h ly eq uivalent to a peck) on it, and in the backgro u n d the p ro w o f a grain-ship. T h e letters S C are inscribed in the exergue. N ap les, M us. N az. Fiorelli 4370. Sestertius.

Cohen 1 7 - 1 8 ; R I C I, p. 15 0 , no. 75, pi. X , 1 6 7 ; Gnecchi R I N , pp. 363 If. T h e c o m p le x scen e o n th e re v e rse o f this N e r o n ia n sestertiu s re fe rs to th e bu sin ess o f g r a in - p r o v is io n in g , w h ic h p la y e d so v ita l a p a rt in R o m a n d a ily life . It p o r tr a y s th e t w o d e ities w h o b e t w e e n th e m w e r e re sp o n sib le fo r th e m a in te n a n c e o f su p p lies : C e re s , th e p ro te c tre ss o f c ro p s a n d h a rv e sts, a n d A n n o n a , in w h o m th e o ffic ia l Sta te r e lig io n h a d p e rso n ifie d th e id e a o f th e a n n u a l h a rv e s t in g a n d d is trib u tio n o f g ra in , to g e th e r w it h th e o rg a n iz a t io n re sp o n sib le fo r it. T h e in a n im a te o b je c ts in this scen e se rv e a d o u b le p u rp o s e . T h e y p r o v id e b a c k g r o u n d m a te ria l fo r its c o m p o s itio n , a n d h e lp to p la c e it in its c o n t e x t ; t h e y also s e rv e to e n h a n c e its sig n ific a n c e . O n th e g a rla n d e d a lta r w e h a v e th e m odius (the u n it o f c a p a c ity n o r m a lly e m p lo y e d to m e a su re g ra in ), w h ile th e s h ip ’ s p r o w in th e b a c k g r o u n d is a re m in d e r o f th o se fa rflu n g sh o res fr o m w h ic h th e

74

b ig m e rc h a n tm e n b r o u g h t th e ir c a rg o e s o f w h e a t, to b e d is c h a rg e d in a n e v e r -e n d in g strea m o n the w h a r v e s o f O stia a n d P u te o li (P o z z u o li). F r o m h ere, a fte r u n lo a d in g , th e g ra in w a s tra n sp o rte d to R o m e itse lf, e ith e r b y ro a d o r b y riv e r . T h e fig u re s o f th e t w o g o d d esses, c o n sid e re d a p a rt fr o m th e ir c o n te x t, are p o r tr a y e d in the tra d itio n a l m a n n e r, w h ic h m ea n s th at th e y a re o n ly d is tin g u is h a b le b y th e ir sp e c ific a ttrib u tes. S im ila r ly , th e sty le o f e x e c u t io n relates th e m to th e cla ssiciz in g tre n d c o n sid e re d a p p ro p ria te fo r such rep resen ta ­ tio n s. B u t e v e n th o u g h th e t w o fig u re s in c o rp o ra te fa m ilia r p a tte rn s a n d p o stu re s, th e c o m p o s itio n o f th e scen e as a w h o le is s o m e th in g n e w . T h e artist has u sed th e c e n tra l a lta r an d , in p a rtic u la r, th e s h ip ’ s p r o w to b in d th e v a rio u s iso la te d ele m en ts in to a u n it y , a n d g iv e h is c o m p o s itio n d e p th b y o p e n in g u p th e b a c k g r o u n d .

22

N E R O ( a d 54-68)

Obu. N E R O C L A V D C A E S A R A V G G E R P M T R P I M P P P. H ead o f N e ro , w ith lau rel-w reath , facing r. R e v . P O R O S T inserted betw een S and C . T h e har­ bour o f Ostia, w ith its lighthouse (topped b y a statue o f N eptune) and seven ships. In the fo reg ro u n d the per­ sonified fig u re o f T ib e r, reclining, face tow ards the 1., one hand on a steering-oar, and a dolphin beside him . A b o v e , the w o rd A V G V S T I . N aples, M us. N az. Fiorelli 4 5 10 . Sestertius.

Cohen 4 1 ; R I C I, p. 1 5 1 , no. 58, pi. I X , 16 8 ; fo r the oldest illustration o f O stia H arbou r, on certain R ep u b li­ can coins, see A . A lfö ld i’s note in Numismatica (R om e, 1964), pp. 9 9 -10 3 , pis. I - V II.

T h e c a te g o rie s in to w h ic h N e r o ’ s c o in a g e ca n b e d iv id e d in c lu d e n u m e ro u s m o r e o r less g e n e ra liz e d scen es, b u t th e re v e rse o f th e sp e c im e n s h o w n h e re ( o f a d 5 4 - 5 5 ) d is p la y s v e r y s p e c ific fe atu res. In d ee d , it refers d ir e c t ly to a r e c o g n iz a b le m o n u m e n t , th e p o r t o f O stia , a n d to th e h isto ric a l fa c t th a t it w a s N e r o w h o c o m p le te d th e g re a t h a rb o u r-b a sin p r o ­ je c t b e g u n b y C la u d iu s . A d d itio n a l im p r o v e m e n ts w e r e s u b se q u e n tly m a d e b y T r a ja n , w h o in sta lle d th e h e x a g o n a l in n e r b a s in ; th e o u te r h a rb o u r c o n ­ stru c te d u n d e r C la u d iu s w a s c irc u la r, as ca n b e seen fr o m th e c o in o p p o s ite . T h e lin e b r o k e n at th e b o t t o m b y th e in sc rip tio n S - P O R O S T - C , a n d e x t e n d e d to th e ‘ m o u t h ’ at th e to p , w h e r e th e w o r d A V G V S T I h as b e e n p la c e d , rep resen ts th e h a r b o u r itself. O u ts id e th is lin e w e fin d a s c h e m a tic re p re ­ sen ta tio n o f th e b u ild in g s w h ic h su rro u n d e d it ; o n th e le ft th e a rca d e s a n d w a re h o u se s, o n th e r ig h t a series o f o b je c ts w h ic h h a v e b e e n in te rp re te d as

76

b re a k w a te rs . In sid e th e c irc le w e u s u a lly fin d a n u m b e r o f sh ip s - s e v e n h e re , b u t s o m e dies m a n a g e to sq u e ez e in as m a n y as th irte en . In th e fo r e g r o u n d (w h ic h a c c o u n ts fo r h is d is p ro p o rtio n a t e size) w e see th e T ib e r , c h a ra c te ris tic a lly p e rso n ifie d as a r iv e r g o d . A t th e to p o f th e c o in stands th e statue o f N e p tu n e , d r a w n v e r y sm all to g iv e an im p re ss io n o f dista n ce. T h is d e sc rip tio n m a y p e rh a p s b e c o m p le te d b y o n e o r t w o re m a rk s w h ic h , b esid es assessing th e d ie c u tte r’ s te c h n ic a l a c h ie v e m e n t, a tte m p t to isola te th e m o r e n o t e w o r t h y fe a tu re s o f th e scen e b e fo re us. I w o u ld lik e , a b o v e a ll, to d r a w th e re a d e r’ s a tte n tio n to th e b ir d ’ s -e y e p e rsp e c tiv e h e h as e m p lo y e d . T h is p a rtic u la r a n g le o f in c id e n c e is a fa ir ly p o p u la r d e v ic e w ith R o m a n artists, b o th fo r r e lie f w o r k an d in g r a p h ic d e sig n , w h e n th e y w a n t to p o r t r a y the inside o f s o m e th in g , e s p e c ia lly s o m e th in g (e.g . an a m p h ith e a tre o r a c a m p p e rim e te r) w h ic h h as a c irc u la r g r o u n d -p la n . A n y j u s t assessm en t o f th e d ie -c u tte r m u st also , I th in k , ta k e in to a c c o u n t th e w a y h e h as h a n d le d the ships. T h e se a re c le a r ly d iffe re n tia te d o n e fr o m a n o th e r, a n d p o r t r a y e d w it h a liv e lin e ss an d a tte n tio n to d e ta il w h ic h su g g e s t th at th e artist d r e w o n d ire c t o b s e rv a t io n . T h e r e is a g re a t d e al o n e c o u ld s a y o n th is s co re ; I w il l m e r e ly call th e re a d e r’ s a tte n tio n to th e la r g e vessel in th e m id d le , w it h a r o w - b o a t a lo n g s id e it - n o te th e t w o sailors o n d e c k , o n e u n fu r lin g th e sails, th e o th e r p e rh a p s h a u lin g in th e a n c h o r - a n d th e m e rc h a n tm a n m o o r e d at the q u a y s id e , w it h its g a n g p la n k o u t, an d th e c r e w lo a d in g o r u n lo a d in g fre ig h t.

23

N E R O ( a d 54-68)

O bv. I M P N E R O C A E S A R A V G P M A X T R P P P. H ead o f N e ro , w ith lau rel-w reath , facin g 1., resting on a globe. R ev. V I C T O R I A A V G V S T I . W in g e d V ic to ry m o v in g tow ards 1., bearing a palm -bran ch in one hand and a laurel c ro w n in the other, flanked b y the letters S C. N ap les, M us. N az. Fiorelli 4628. D up on diu s (tw o-as piece).

Cohen 3 4 3 - 4 ; R I C I, p. 16 $ , no. 304. T h e c u lt o f V ic t o r y , w h ic h R o m e in h e rite d fr o m th e G r e e k w o r ld , t o o k o n a v a r ie t y o f fre sh c h a ra c te r­ istics a n d m o d ific a tio n s in its n e w c o n te x t, e s p e c ia lly u n d e r th e E m p ir e . S h e w a s , in p o in t o f fa ct, re g a rd e d a b o v e all as a m ilit a r y g o d d e ss, c lo s e ly lin k e d w it h th e fo rtu n e o f th e a r m y , o f w h ic h , in d e e d , she w a s s u p p o se d to b e th e fo u n d e r a n d p ro te c tre s s; h en ce th e w e lfa r e o f th e E m p ir e as a w h o le w a s su p p o se d to c o m e u n d e r h e r ju r is d ic tio n . B u t , o v e r a n d a b o v e th is, she also p la y e d a p a rt in th e r e lig io u s life o f th e P rin c e p s h im s e lf. A s V ictoria A u g u sti she b e c a m e h is p e rso n a l p a tro n g o d d e ss, ju s t lik e F o rtu n e , w h o s im ila r ly w a t c h e d o v e r h is w e ll- b e in g . W it h so w id e a r a n g e o f sty le s to c h o o se fr o m , b o th th e g e n e ra l in te rp re t a t io n an d th e g o d d e s s ’ s s p e c ific a ttrib u te s ca n v a r y c o n s id e ra b ly . S h e v e r y o fte n a p p ea rs o n co in s a n d h isto ric a l re lie fs (b o th o f w h ic h c o m e u n d e r th e h e a d in g o f ‘ o ffic ia l’ art) b e a rin g a p a lm - b r a n c h a n d a la u re l w r e a th , as in th e sp e c im e n s h o w n h ere . B e c a u s e o f th is she is s o m e ­ tim e s re fe rre d to as pa lm aris D ea . T h is p a rtic u la r re p re se n ta tio n c o n tin u e d th r o u g h o u t th e E m p ir e , th us p e r m ittin g in te re s tin g c o m p a riso n s b e t w e e n th e sty le o f o n e p e r io d a n d a n o th e r. M o r e o fte n th an

78

n o t such c o m p a riso n s re v e a l a tte m p ts to e m b o d y the c u rre n t fa sh io n ra th e r th an con trasts in in d iv id u a l a rtistic te c h n iq u e . O n th e N e r o n ia n d u p o n d iu s re p ro d u c e d o p p o ­ site, fo r in stan ce, th e fig u r e o f the g o d d e ss, th o u g h c h a r m in g ly c o n c e iv e d , a n d n o t w it h o u t a ce rta in d y n a m ic e le g a n c e , d o es n o t su cceed in b re a k in g a w a y fr o m th e fa m ilia r ra n g e o f s to c k im a g e s . It retain s th at fr a g ile c h a rm ch a ra cte ristic o f all such re p re se n ta tio n s d u rin g th e J u l io - C la u d ia n era , w h e n th e y tu rn u p in a v a r ie t y o f m e d ia , fr o m p a in tin g s a n d m u ra ls to te rrac o tta s. T h e p re se n t sp e c im e n n ev e rth e le ss has a ce rta in in te re st, p a r t ly b ec au se o f its a d a p ta tio n as a b ro n z e re lie f, a n d p a r t ly t h ro u g h th e lig h tn e ss o f to u c h e v in c e d in th e tre a tm e n t o f th e d r a p e r y , e s p e c ia lly b e n e a th th e b o s o m a n d h ip s. N o t e , to o , th e g r o u p o f clo se, s h a rp ly d e fin e d lin es le ft tra ilin g o u t b e h in d th e g o d d e s s ’ s le g s to in d ic a te fo r w a r d m o v e m e n t : this m o t i f b e c o m e s a c h a ra cte ristic fe a tu re o f such fig u re s o n co in s (cf. P la te s 30 , 6 2, 82, 94).

24

G ALBA

(ad

68-69)

O lw . S E R S V L P G A L B A I M P C A E S A R A V G T R P. B u st o f G alba, w ith lau rel-w reath , facin g r. R e v . H I S P A N I A C L V N I A S V L . T h e E m p ero r, bareheaded but oth erw ise fu lly arm ed, sitting facin g 1., receives the Palladium fro m a fem ale figu re standing in fron t o f h im , w ith a cornucopia in her 1. hand. In the ex e rg u e the letters S C . N ap les, M us. N az. Fioretti 4807. Sestertius.

Cohen 86 -8 8 ; R I C l , p. 2 1 5 , no. 1 5 1 ; K raay, pp. 39-4 0 . S u e to n iu s ( V it . G a ib . 9) tells us o f a p r o p h e c y w h ic h G a lb a h e a rd in S p a in , in th e c it y o f C lu n ia , a c c o rd in g to w h ic h th e ru le r a n d lo r d o f th e w o r ld w o u ld , o n e d a y , c o m e fr o m S p a in . It is o b v io u s th at this c o in re fe rs to th e p r o p h e c y in q u e stio n . J u s t h o w w e sh o u ld in te rp re t th e fe m a le fig u r e is less ce rta in . S h e c o u ld b e a p e rso n ific a tio n o f S p a in , o r o f C lu n ia ; she m ig h t e v e n re p re se n t th e y o u n g m a id e n w h o , S u e to n iu s says, o r ig in a lly m a d e th e p re d ic tio n . B u t th a t th e re fe re n c e is, in fa c t, to this in c id e n t a d m its o f n o d o u b t. A p a r t fr o m th e in sc rip tio n a n d th e scen e o n th e re v e rse , it w o u ld a p p e a r th at su ch a th e m e o c c u rs o n n o co in s e x c e p t G a lb a ’ s, a fa ct w h ic h c o n fir m s its u n iq u e h isto ric a l n atu re . A s re g a rd s th e issue, M a t t in g ly h o ld s th at it w a s p o s th u m o u s , a n d assign s it to th e y e a rs a d 7 0 - 7 1 . M o r e r e c e n t ly , h o w e v e r , C . M . K r a a y (w h o h as m a d e a sp ec ial s tu d y o f G a lb a ’ s b ro n z e issues, re ­ a ss ig n in g th e m a c c o r d in g to th e latest m e th o d s o f cla ssifica tio n ) h as a rg u e d th a t it w a s s tru c k in o n e o f th e o th e r m in ts to w h ic h th e R o m a n T r e a s u r y fa r m e d o u t w o r k u n d e r G a lb a ; h e dates th is p a rtic ­ u la r issue to th e m o n th s im m e d ia te ly a fte r th e E m p e r o r ’ s a r r iv a l in R o m e .

80

L ik e o th e r dies cu t d u rin g this p e rio d , th e o n e s h o w n h e re d isp la y s r e m a rk a b le te ch n ica l a c c u ra c y a n d fe lic it y o f s ty le , su ch co in s h a v e been lik e n e d to th e so -c a lle d ‘ m e d a llio n s ’ d iscu sse d in th e In tro d u c tio n . O n e o r t w o d e ta ils s h o u ld be n o tic e d . T h e E m p e r o r re m a in s seated in th e p re se n ce o f a g o d d ess, a ra re p h e n o m e n o n at this p e rio d . H is seat, a n o th e r u n u su a l fe a tu re , con sists o f a m a rb le th ro n e . T h e r e is also th e re la tiv e p r o p o r t io n o f th e t w o fig u re s ; i f th e E m p e r o r w e r e sta n d in g , h e w o u ld b e a g re a t d e a l ta lle r th an th e g o d d e ss. B u t a b o v e a ll w e sh o u ld o b s e r v e th e h a r m o n y a n d n o b ilit y o f th e c o m p o s i­ tio n as a w h o le , th e d ig n it y o f th e in d iv id u a l fig u re s, an d th e sk ille d m a ste ry o f r e lie f te c h n iq u e a p p a re n t th r o u g h o u t - q u a litie s w h ic h , ta k e n to g e th e r, m a rk o u t th e d ie -c u tte r as a q u ite e x c e p t io n a l artist.

25

G ALBA

(ad

68-69)

O bv. S E R G A L B A C A E S A R A V G . B ust o f Galba, bareheaded, facing r., w earin g a breastplate w ith the G o rg o n ’ s head on it. R e v . D I V A A V G V S T A . Livia standing, facing 1., w ith a patera in one hand, and leaning on a long sceptre. Lo n d o n . B ritish M useum . B M C I, p. 3 10 , no. 13 , pi. $2, 6. Aureus.

Cohen 4 6 - 7 ; R I C I, p. 20, no. 3, pi. X I I I , 22.

T h e sp le n d id p o rtra it o f G a lb a o n th e g o ld au reu s r e p r o d u c e d h e re is th e firs t o f t w o (see a lso P la te s 29 a n d 30 ). I h a v e d e lib e ra t e ly c h o se n th ese w id e ly d iffe r in g lik en e sses o f th e E m p e r o r in o r d e r to e x e m p lif y th e h ig h a rtistic sta n d a rd w h ic h R o m a n d ie -c u tte rs a c h ie v e d d u r in g his re ig n , an d to h ig h ­ lig h t th e v a rie tie s o f fa sh io n w h ic h th e ir e ffo rts at p o r tr a itu r e re v e a l. G a lb a c a m e o f a n o b le fa m ily ; h e w a s b o rn in a v illa n e a r T e r r a c in a (3 b c ), an d h a d a lo n g an d su cc essfu l m ilit a r y ca re e r, first in G a u l, fr o m w h e r e h e m o v e d o n to A fr ic a , a n d later in S p a in , w h e r e N e r o a p p o in te d h im P r o v in c ia l G o v e r n o r o f H is ­ p a n ia T a rra c o n e n s is. A c c la im e d E m p e r o r b y his tro o p s , h e d e c la re d h im s e lf th e ‘ re p re s e n ta tiv e o f th e S e n a te ’ , a n d o n ly a fte r n e w s c a m e o f N e r o ’ s d eath d id h e p r o c e e d to R o m e . H e re , in a d 6 8, h e w a s p r o c la im e d E m p e r o r b y th e S e n a te a n d th e P r a e to r ­ ia n G u a r d . T h e c o in r e p ro d u c e d h e re , w h ic h has b e e n a ssig n e d to th e R o m e m in t, w o u ld seem to re p re se n t h im ra th e r as m ilit a r y c o m m a n d e r th an in his c a p a c ity as H e a d o f S tate . G a lb a is p o r t r a y e d in fu ll m ilit a r y u n ifo r m , b a re h e a d e d , a nd w it h o u t the Im p e ria l la u r e l-w r e a th . H is p r o file , e x e c u t e d w it h

82

fa r fr o m fla tte rin g re a lism , su g g ests n o t so m u c h the P rin c e p s as th e stern an d r u g g e d so ld ie r, w h o s e life has b e e n sp en t o n a c tiv e s e rv ic e . N e r o h ad b ee n p a ss io n a te ly a d d ic te d to H e lle n istic c u ltu re , a facet o f h is c h a ra c te r w h ic h th e e x ta n t p o rtra its e x p re ss all to o w e ll. T h is sta rk a n d p o w e r fu l lik en ess o f G a lb a , w it h its s t r ik in g ly su ccessfu l n a tu ra listic te ch n iq u e , b rin g s a b re a th o f r e n e w e d life an d sp o n ta n e ity in to th e tra d itio n . T h e d e sig n o n th e re v e rse , w h ic h p o rtra y s L iv ia as D iv a A u gusta, b ea rs w itn e ss to th e g ra titu d e G a lb a fe lt to w a r d s h e r ; she h a d g o n e o u t o f h e r w a y to p r o te c t h im , an d h ad also b e q u e a th e d h im a v e r y la r g e su m o f m o n e y in h e r w ill.

26

G A L B A ( a d 68-69)

O bv. S E R S V L P I G A L B A I M P C A E S A R A V G P M T R P. B ust o f G alba, w earin g lau rel-w reath , and w ith the aegis on his breast. R ev. A D L O C V T I O . G alba standing on a dais, facing r., w ith the Praetorian Prefect in attendance, h aran guin g his tro o p s; som e display the m ilitary eagles and stand­ ards, the rest are arm ed w ith spears. B etw e en them the head and h ooves o f a horse can be seen. T h e scene is flanked b y the letters S C . N aples, M us. N az. Fiorelli 4758. Sestertius.

Cohen 2 - 5 ; R I C I, p. 2 1 5 , no. 1 5 0 ; K raa y, pp. 38 ff. and passim, w ith previou s b ib lio g ra p h y . F o r a sim ilar m edallion o f C aracalla, see ibid., p. 39, note 17 , and Toynbee, pi. X L I V , no. 3. T h e scen e o f th e E m p e r o r a d d re ssin g h is tro o p s is o n e th at re c u rs w it h g re a t fr e q u e n c y , a lb e it w it h s o m e v a ria tio n s o f d e ta il a n d p re se n ta tio n , o n h isto ric a l re lie fs o f th e Im p e ria l era . It a lso o c c u rs a n u m b e r o f tim e s o n th e co in s o f v a rio u s E m p e r o r s b e t w e e n C a lig u la a n d D io c le tia n . A m o n g s t e x ­ a m p le s e a rlie r th a n th e p re se n t sp e c im e n w e fin d adlocutiones o f C a lig u la , C la u d iu s , a n d N e r o (P late 2 2 ). C o m p a r is o n w it h th e issues o f C a lig u la a n d N e r o , w h e r e w e fin d th e fu ll in sc rip tio n adloc[utio] coh[ortium ], has le d K r a a y to su p p o se th at th e scen e o n G a lb a ’ s sestertius s im ila r ly refers to an add ress d e liv e r e d in R o m e , b e fo re th e P ra e to ria n s. H e a d ­ v a n c e s th e h y p o th e sis th at w h a t w e h a v e h e re is the sp ee ch G a lb a m a d e im m e d ia t e ly a fte r his a rr iv a l in R o m e , w h e n th e P ra e to ria n s h ad a c c la im e d h im E m p e r o r . I f this t h e o r y is c o rre c t, th e seco n d p e rso n o n th e d ais w o u ld b e C o r n e liu s L a c o , w h o w a s P ra e to ria n P re fe c t at th e tim e .

84

S t y lis t ic a lly th e g r o u p is fu ll o f l iv e ly re a lism , an d w e l l e x e m p lifie s th e h ig h le v e l o f n u m is m a tic art w h ic h w a s a c h ie v e d d u rin g G a lb a ’ s re ig n . T h e E m p e r o r (w h o s e in d iv id u a l fe atu res are c le a rly re c o g n iz a b le ) stands fa c in g his tro o p s, h e re re p re ­ sen ted b y a m e re fo u r sold ie rs. T h e la r g e n u m b e r o f spears a n d stan d ard s, in fa ct th e y are v ir t u a lly in d e p e n d e n t o f th e so ld ie rs as h ere p o r tr a y e d , c o n v e y a s u g g e s tio n o f sp atial d e p th , an d th e p re se n ce o f v a st i f in v isib le c r o w d s s o m e w h e re in th e b a c k ­ g r o u n d . T h e im p re ssio n o f m o v e m e n t a n d a n im a ­ tio n is h e ig h te n e d b y th e v a r y in g p o stu re s o f th e so ld ie rs th e m se lv e s. O b s e r v e th e p r o u d c a rria g e o f th e t w o in fro n t, w it h th e h o rs e ’ s h ea d a n d h o o v e s b e t w e e n th e m . (T h e la tte r are s o m e w h a t h a rd to m a k e o u t in th e sp e c im e n s h o w n h ere .) A n o th e r d e ta il w o r t h n o tin g is th e la rg e m a sk w h ic h a d o rn s th e sh ie ld o f th e so ld ie r o n th e e x t re m e rig h t. O n e in te re s tin g p o in t is th at th e scen e p o r tr a y e d h e re rec u rs, id e n tic a l e x c e p t fo r th e a d d itio n o f a th ird p e rso n o n th e dais, o n a m e d a llio n stru c k b y C a ra c a lla . A g a in , M a t t in g ly re g a rd s this as a p o s th u m o u s issu e, a n d a ssign s it to L y o n s , w h e re a s K r a a y m a in ­ tain s th a t it w a s m in te d in R o m e as e a r ly as a d 69.

27

G ALBA

(a d

68-69)

O bv. I M P S E R S V L P G A L B A C A E S A V G T R P. B ust o f G alba, w ith corn-ear w reath , facin g r. R ev. L I B E R T A S P V B L I C A . L ib erty standing, facing L, w ith the pileus (cap o f liberty) in one hand, and a spear in the other, flanked b y the letters S C . N ap les, M us. N az. Fioretti 4832. Sestertius.

Cohen 1 2 1 on p. 3 1 8 ; R I C I, p. 203, no. 3 5 ; K raay, pp. 24fr. In sh a rp c o n tra st w it h th e p o r tr a it o n th e g o ld a u reu s (P late 2 5 ), th e d e sig n fo r this sestertius s h o w s a lik en e ss in w h ic h th e E m p e r o r ’ s p o w e r a n d m a je st y , q u ite a p a rt fr o m th e su p e rsc rip tio n , are g iv e n fu ll a n d d ig n ifie d e x p re ss io n . S e ld o m in d e e d in th e h is to r y o f R o m a n Im p e ria l p o rtra itu re d o w e fin d t w o re p re se n ta tio n s o f th e sam e p e rso n w h ic h c o n tra st w it h o n e a n o th e r so s tr o n g ly , y e t w h ic h b o th , in th e ir o w n w a y , su cc ee d so w e ll. E a c h p o r tr a it re p ro d u c e s G a lb a ’s m o r e s trik in g fe a tu re s w it h g re a t f id e lit y ; th e a q u ilin e n o se , s lig h tly fla tte n e d at its tip , th e s tro n g ju t t in g j a w , th e p u rse d lip s. B u t w h ile th e first p o rtra it a c h ie v e s n o m o r e th an a c ru d e lik en e ss, w it h re a lism th at is ta n ta ­ m o u n t to lèse-majesté, th e te c h n iq u e e m p lo y e d fo r th e h e a d w e are n o w s tu d y in g is o f a fa r m o r e su b tle o rd e r. E v e n th e a g e o f th e se p tu a g e n a ria n E m p e r o r h as b ee n p la y e d d o w n , so th at th e p o rtra it su g g ests a m a n still in th e v ig o r o u s p r im e o f life . (In p o in t o f fa c t th is is o n e fe a tu re it h as in c o m m o n w it h th e lik en e ss o n th e a u reu s.) In o n e sense, o f co u rse , th e h ig h tra d itio n a l s ty le in w h ic h this p o rtra it is c o n ­ c e iv e d a u to m a tic a lly ro b s it o f all rea l life . N o t o n ly th e fe a tu re s th e m se lv e s, b u t also th e te c h n iq u e e m p lo y e d to e x p re ss th e m , are c o n v e n t io n a l to a

86

d e g re e . N o t e , fo r in stan ce, th e s y m m e tric a l a rra n g e ­ m e n t o f th e h a ir o n te m p le s an d fo re h e a d , a n d th e e la b o r a te ly d e c o ra t iv e tre a tm e n t g iv e n to th e r ib b o n se c u rin g th e c o rn -e a r w r e a th a b o v e th e n a p e o f th e neck. T h e fig u r e o f Libertas pu blica s h o w n o n th e re v e rse (a se c o n d d ie w it h th e sam e th e m e is r e p ro d u c e d o n P la te 28) h in ts at th e lin e w h ic h G a lb a ’ s p o litic a l p r o p a g a n d a t o o k : o n his su ccessio n , a fte r N e r o ’ s d e ath , h e h ad p ro m is e d th at u n d e r h im th e P r in c ip a te w o u ld fo l lo w a p a tte rn m o re a k in to th at o f th e R e p u b lic .

28

G ALBA

(A D

68-69)

O bv. I M P S E R S V L P G A L B A C A E S A V G T R P. B u st o f G alba, w ith m ilita ry cloak and lau rel-w reath , facing r. R ev. L I B E R T A S P V B L I C A . L ib erty standing fullface, head turned to the 1., w ith sceptre and pileus, flanked b y the letters S C . N ap les, M us. N az . Fiorelli 4 833. Sestertius.

Cohen 1 2 1 ; R I C l, p. 203, no. 3 5 ; K raay, pp. 24 ff. T h e p e rso n ifie d fig u r e o f L ib e r t y , w h o s e c u lt h ad d eep an d lo n g -s ta n d in g ro o ts in R o m a n o ffic ia l life (cf. P la te 1 2 ) , b e c a m e k n o w n , w it h G a lb a ’ s a cce ssio n , as L ibertas Publica-, th e resu lt w a s an a lt o g e th e r n e w p o r t r a it - t y p e , w h ic h s e rv e d as th e b ase fo r m a n y la te r re p re se n ta tio n s. T h e v e rs io n s h o w n h e re p o r tr a y s th e g o d d e s s fu ll-fa c e ; h e r tu n ic is g a th e re d in w it h a sash, w h ile h e r m a n tle is d ra p e d ro u n d h e r le g s a n d h a n g s lo o s e fr o m h e r le ft a rm a n d sh o u ld e r. H e r w e ig h t is o n h e r r ig h t le g , h e r le ft is b e n t at th e k n e e , an d th e h a n d in w h ic h she h o ld s th e p ileu s (h er re g u la r a ttrib u te e v e r since th e R e p u b lic a n p e rio d ) is e x t e n d e d to w a r d s th e rig h t. (O n e is re m in d e d o f th e c o in w h ic h w a s s tru c k in G r e e c e in 43 b c b y M a r c u s B r u tu s , to c o m m e m o r a te C a e s a r ’ s a ssassin a tio n : this s h o w e d th e p ileu s b e t w e e n t w o d a g g e rs , an d b o r e th e in sc rip tio n eid[ibus] mar[tiis].) S t y lis tic c o n sid e ra tio n s a p art, it is in te re stin g to c o m p a r e th e c o in re p ro d u c e d h e re w it h th e C la u d ia n as (P late 12 ) o n w h ic h w e s a w a p o r t r a y a l o f Libertas A ugusta. N o t m e r e ly is th e e n tire em p h a sis re v e rse d , b u t th e t w o fig u re s c le a r ly are d r a w n fr o m q u ite d iffe re n t p ro to t y p e s . T h e s p e c im e n s h o w n h e re is m o d e lle d o n s o m e statu e o f th e late classical p e r io d : this is th e s o u rc e o f its w e ig h t in g an d stan ce, n o t to m e n t io n th e h a irs ty le a n d th e a rra n g e m e n t o f th e

88

m a n tle . O n th e o th e r h an d , w e h a v e to d o h e re w it h a d ie -c u tte r o f d e c id e d ly m e d io c re a b ility , w h o in o n e resp e ct at least - th e p ro p o rtio n a l re la tio n sh ip b e t w e e n fig u r e a n d in sc rip tio n - has w a n t o n ly d e s t ro y e d th e im p re ss io n o f d iv in it y w h ic h h e set o u t to cre ate. H is g o d d e ss is a tin y cre a tu re , d w a r fe d b y th e g e n e ra l p ro p o rtio n s o f th e c o m p o s itio n , an d v e r y p o o r ly e x e c u t e d in to the b a rg a in . H is fu n d a ­ m e n ta l in c o m p e te n c e is m o st c le a rly a p p a re n t in th e d isp o sitio n a n d tre a tm e n t o f th e d ra p erie s. O b s e r v e th e s k e tc h y , d is jo in te d w a y in w h ic h h e su g g ests the fo ld o f th e m a n tle o v e r th e le ft a rm , an d th e sty listic in c o h e re n c e a p p a re n t in th e p o r tr a y a l o f th e a rm itse lf, n o less th an th at o f th e ro b e w h ic h e n v e lo p s it.

29

G A LB A (ad

6 8 -6 9 )

O bv. I M P S E R G A L B A C A E S A R A V G P M . H ead o f Galba, w ith lau rel-w reath , facing r. R e v . V I C T O R I A P R . V ic to ry on a globe, facing 1., w ith palm and cro w n . N ap les, M us. N az. Fiorelli 4749. A ureus.

Cohen 3 2 4 -3 3 0 ; R I C l , p. 20, no. 23. G a lb a ’ s b r ie f r e ig n lasted fo r n o m o r e th an sev en m o n th s, b e t w e e n a d 68 a n d 69. Y e t th e c o in a g e it p r o d u c e d is so ric h a n d v a r ie d as to s u g g e st th at th e a ctu a l m in tin g c o v e r e d a m u c h lo n g e r p e rio d , b e g in n in g w h e n G a lb a w a s still in S p a in , a n d c o n ­ tin u in g in to 7 0 a n d 7 1 w it h a series o f p o s th u m o u s issues. S u c h an e x t e n sio n w o u ld also a c c o u n t fo r c e rta in sty lis tic affin itie s w it h th e c o in a g e o f G a lb a ’ s e v e n tu a l su cc esso r V e sp a sia n . T h e r e ca n b e n o q u e stio n th a t th e p o r tr a it o n th e a u reu s re p ro d u c e d h e re o ffe rs y e t a n o th e r lik en e ss o f G a lb a , w h ic h has little in c o m m o n w it h th e t w o p r e v io u s o n es. In o n e sense it c o u ld b e d e sc rib e d as m o r e s ty liz e d , less o f an in d iv id u a l p o r tr a y a l. O n e g ets th e im p re ss io n th at th is tim e th e d ie -c u t te r has b e e n less c o n c e rn e d to re p ro d u c e G a lb a ’ s h ig h ly c h a ra c te ristic p r o file , a n d m o r e p r e o c c u p ie d w it h th e fo r m a l aspects o f h is task. It lo o k s , to o , as th o u g h h e has a lre a d y b e g u n to e x p e r im e n t w it h th o se illu sio n istic tric k s w h ic h w e fin d in p o rtra its o f th e F la v ia n e m p e ro rs, a n d w h ic h fo r m a d is tin g u is h in g fe a tu re o f th e art p r o d u c e d d u r in g this p e rio d . F o r in stan c e, h e s h o w s v e r y little in te rest in his s u b je c t’ s h a ir, w h ic h h e su g g e sts b y c o n v e n t io n a l stip p lin g - a fa r c r y fr o m th e tre a tm e n t it re c e iv e s in th e t w o p r e c e d in g p o rtra its , b u t n e v e rth e le ss fa m ilia r fr o m c e rta in o th e r c o in -p o rt ra it s o f G a lb a . O n th e o th e r h a n d h e has la v is h e d p a rtic u la r c a re o n th e te x tu r e o f th e E m p e r o r ’ s flesh , d o in g h is b est to a c c e n tu a te its flab b in ess. T h e b o n y stru c tu re o f

90

G a lb a ’ s fa c e , so p ro m in e n t in th e o th e r t w o p o r ­ traits, is v e r y m u c h p la y e d d o w n h ere , m a in ly in o rd e r to e m p h a siz e th e e x a g g e r a te d an d u n n a tu ra l re n d e rin g o f th e ch ee k s (n o te th e s w e llin g b esid e th e e y e ) a n d th e g ro ss , e n g o r g e d th ro at. T h e scen e o n th e re v e rse , s h o w n o n P la te 30 , w it h its s y m b o lic re fe re n c e to th e v ic t o rie s o f th e R o m a n p e o p le , m u st b e seen in th e c o n te x t o f G a lb a ’ s p ro p a g a n d a p r o g r a m m e , to w h ic h re fe re n c e has a lre a d y b e e n m a d e.

30

G ALBA

(ad

68-69)

O bv. I M P S E R G A L B A C A E S A R A V G P M . H ead o f G alba, w ith lau rel-w reath , facing r. R e v . V I C T O R I A P R . V ic to ry on a globe, facing 1., w ith palm and cro w n . N ap les, M us. N az. Fioretti 4749. Aureus.

Cohen 3 2 4 -3 3 0 ; R I C 1, p. 20, no. 23, pi. X I I I , 226. L ik e th e V ic t o r y o f N e r o ’ s d u p o n d iu s, re p ro d u c e d o n P la te 2 3 , th e o n e o n th is g o ld a u reu s issu ed b y G a lb a has a c r o w n a n d p a lm , b u t t w o th in g s d is­ tin g u is h it fr o m its p re d e c e sso r. F irst o f a ll th ere is th e in sc rip tio n , w h ic h re fe rs to th e ‘ V ic t o r y o f th e R o m a n P e o p le ’ , n o t to th e ‘ V ic t o r y o f A u g u s t u s ’ . T h is a llu sio n to th e p e o p le ’ s g o o d fo rtu n e has a g e n e ra liz in g effe c t, a n d p e rh a p s tak es o n s o m e s p e c ific m e a n in g in th e c o n t e x t o f G a lb a ’ s p o litic a l a im s. It is w e ll k n o w n th at w h e n h e su c c ee d ed N e r o , h e v o w e d to b r in g th e P rin c ip a te b a c k to th e o ld u n c o n t a m in a te d tra d itio n s o f th e R e p u b lic . It is also s ig n ific a n t th at th e in sc rip tio n v i c t o r i a p r sh o u ld a p p e a r o n G a lb a ’ s co in s a lo n e . T h e r e is a n o th e r d iffe re n c e b e t w e e n th is p o r t r a y a l o f V ic t o r y an d th at o n th e d u p o n d iu s stru c k b y N e r o . T h is tim e V ic t o r y is n o t s h o w n m o v in g lig h t ly fo r w a r d , b u t p o se d p r e c a r io u s ly o n h e r g lo b e , in a p o s tu re w e llk n o w n to th e R o m a n w o r ld , a n d o n e w h ic h w a s to b e w id e l y a d o p te d in m o d e r n tim e s b y artists w is h in g to d e p ic t F o rtu n e . A p a r t fr o m su ch c o n c re te d iffe re n c e s, th ere is a m a r k e d c h a n g e in s t y le ; b u t w h a t w e n o tic e m o st is th e sh e er c re a t iv e q u a lit y o f this re p re se n ta tio n , w h ic h a c h ie v e s a fa r fre sh e r a n d m o r e v iv id im p a c t th an d o es its N e r o n ia n p re d e c e sso r. In th e sp e c im e n s h o w n h e re th e g o d d e ss, p o is e d o n h e r g lo b e , seem s to h a v e o n ly ju s t a lig h te d f r o m flig h t, an d is still q u iv e r in g in th e w in d th a t stirs h e r g a rm e n ts , b l o w ­ in g th e m a g a in st h e r b o d y so th at t h e y c lin g to h e r

92

fu ll, n a tu ra l breasts. T h e sam e ric h in v e n tiv e n e s s o f r e lie f te c h n iq u e can be seen in th e tre a tm e n t o f h er w in g s a n d c r o w n , a n d th e h e a v y p a lm - b ra n c h she ca rries. T h e a rtis t’ s sk ill is also a p p a re n t in th e w a y h e p lac es h is ce n tra l fig u r e in th e c irc u la r fra m e o f th e c o in , a n d a rra n g e s th e le tte rin g o f th e in sc rip tio n so h a r m o n io u s ly a ro u n d h e r, to fo r m a r in g w h ic h stop s sh o rt b e t w e e n th e lin e o f h e r ro b e a n d th e sp rea d o f h e r a m p le w in g s .

31

VESPASIAN ( ad 69-79)

O bv. I M P C A E S A R V E S P A S IA N V S A V G . H ead o f V espasian, w ith lau rel-w reath , facing r. R e v . C O S I T E R T R P O T . M ars, naked and helm eted, m o vin g tow ards the r., w ith the eagle o f the legions resting on his shoulder, and a spear in his r. hand. N ap les, M us. N az. Fiorelli 5236. Aureus.

Cohen 86; R I C II, p. 16 , no. 6. T . F la v iu s V e sp a sia n u s w a s b o r n o n 1 7 N o v e m b e r , a d 9, at R e a te , in S a b in e t e r r it o r y , th e so n o f F la v iu s S a b in u s a n d V e s p a s ia P o lla . H e w a s b r o u g h t u p at C o s a . A ft e r s e r v in g as m ilit a r y trib u n e in T h r a c e , a n d as q u a e sto r o f th e p r o v in c e o f C r e t e a n d C y r e n e , h e g a in e d th e a ed ile sh ip in 38 , an d in 39 w a s m a d e p ra e t o r. A ft e r a c o u p le o f m ilit a r y c a m ­ p a ig n s, o n th e R h in e a nd in B r ita in , h e b e c a m e consul suffectus ( 5 1 ) , a n d a b o u t 6 2 h e ld th e p ro c o n s u la r g o v e r n o r s h ip o f A fr ic a . H is n e x t f e w y e a rs w e r e sp en t in R o m e ; th en h e a c c o m p a n ie d N e r o to G re e c e (66), a n d t w o y e a rs later th e E m p e r o r d e sig n a te d h im as g e n e ra l to p ro s e c u te th e w a r in Ju d a e a . It w a s h e re , w h ile p r e p a r in g fo r h is assau lt o n Je r u s a le m , th at h e le a rn t o f N e r o ’ s d e ath , in J u n e 68, a n d su b ­ s e q u e n tly , in J a n u a r y 6 9, o f G a lb a ’ s e q u a lly u n t im e ly en d . O n 1 J u l y , 6 9, h e w a s a c c la im e d E m p e r o r b y h is tro o p s , a n d o n 2 2 D e c e m b e r , a fte r th e d e ath o f V it e lliu s , h e w a s a c k n o w le d g e d b y th e S e n a te , a n d re c e iv e d th e b y n o w tra d itio n a l h o n o u rs v o t e d to a P rin c e p s o n h is a cce ssio n . T h e p o rtra its w h ic h w e p ossess o f h im fo r th e m o st p a rt re fle c t h is h u m b le o rig in s ; t h e y also le n d c re d e n c e to th a t e le m e n t in th e lit e r a r y tra d itio n w h ic h p re se n ts h im as a w is e a n d s h r e w d Im p e ria l a d m in is tra to r - b u t also rec alls th a t, a fte r h is p r o ­ c o n su lsh ip , h e m a d e a sm a ll p r iv a te fo rtu n e as a s la v e -d e a le r. It lik e w is e p re se rv e s th e a n e c d o te o f

94

h o w V e sp a sia n o n c e fe ll asleep d u r in g an a rtistic p e r fo r m a n c e b y N e r o , th us p r o v o k in g th e E m ­ p e r o r ’ s w r a t h . T h e c o in -p o rt ra it s fa ll (w ith m in o r va riatio n s) in to t w o m a in g ro u p s . T h e first o f these p o r tr a y s h im as a c a lm , e a s y - g o in g c h a ra c te r; the se co n d pre se n ts a m o r e id e a liz e d v e rs io n , im b u e d w it h lo f t y d ig n it y . T h e c o in s h o w n h ere , w h ic h is d a te d a b o u t a d 70 , b e lo n g s to th e first tre n d ra th er th an th e se c o n d , an d is p r im a r ily d istin g u ish e d b y th e sen su o u s, re s p o n siv e q u a lity o f its r e lie f- w o r k : th ere is n o re a lly serio u s a tte m p t to e x p lo r e th e fa cia l stru c tu re .

32

V E S P A S IA N

(a d

69-79)

O lw . I M P C A E S A R V E S P A S IA N V S AVG. H ead o f V espasian, w ea rin g lau rel-w reath , and facin g r. R ev. C O S I T E R T R P O T . N ep tune, standing, fac­ ing 1., his right fo o t on a ship’s p ro w ; in his 1. hand he holds a trident, and on his outstretched r. hand a dolphin. N ap les, M us. N az . Fiorelli 5 2 4 1. Aureus.

Cohen 89 -9 0; R I C II, p. 16 , no. 8. F o r a sim ilar coin o f D em etriu s Poliorcetes see also Head, Hist. N um ., p. 230, fig. 14 2 ; fo r those o f C o rin th and A lexan d ria referred to in the text, see B M C , Corinth, pi. X I X , no. 4 ; ibid., Alexandria, pi. II, nos 930 and 2307. T h e B M C m a y also be consulted fo r variou s m int issues o f Asia M in o r. T h e sta tu e o f N e p t u n e re p r o d u c e d o n th e re v e rse o f th is g o ld a u reu s o f V e s p a s ia n is n o t th e d ie c u tte r’ s p e rso n a l in v e n tio n , n o r , in d e e d , d o its o rig in s d e r iv e fr o m R o m a n a rt as such . In fa c t it g o e s b a c k to a H e lle n is tic s ta tu e -ty p e o f th e fo u rt h c e n tu r y b c , w h ic h w a s s u b se q u e n tly tra n sm itte d in n u m e ro u s co p ie s a n d v a ria n ts , b o th o n co in s a n d as p ie ces o f s c u lp tu re . T h e ea rlie st n u m is m a t ic v e r s io n k n o w n to us is a M a c e d o n ia n te tra d ra c h m stru c k b y D e m e tr iu s P o lio rc e te s , to c o m m e n o r a te h is n a v a l v ic t o r y o f 30 6 b c w h e n , as a d m ira l o f A n t ig o n u s ’ s flee t, h e h a d d e fe a te d th e P to le m a ic n a v y o f f C y p r u s . T h e v e r s io n s h o w n o n h is te tra d ra c h m is d iffe re n t in o n e re sp e c t fr o m th at r e p ro d u c e d h e re : P o se id o n , in stea d o f d is p la y in g a d o lp h in , s im p ly has his fo r e a r m re stin g o n his ra ise d k n e e . T h e sp e c im e n o p p o s ite is d a te d b y C o h e n to a d 7 0 ; M a t t in g ly , h o w e v e r , a ssign s it to th e g r o u p o f issues m a d e b e t w e e n D e c e m b e r 69 and th e en d o f 7 1 . T h e t y p e - fig u r e o f N e p t u n e d o es n o t a p p e a r to h a v e b e e n e m p lo y e d , in th is in stan c e, fo r th e c o m m e m ­ o ra t io n o f a n y sp e c ific e v e n t, n o r is it o f g re a t a rtistic in te rest. N o t e h o w th e d ie -c u tte r has e lim in a te d a ll th e d iffic u ltie s p re se n te d b y th e

96

o r ig in a l M a c e d o n ia n statu e, in p a rtic u la r th e fo r ­ w a r d b e n d a n d th ru st o f th e g o d ’ s h ead a n d sh o u l­ ders. H e has p ro d u c e d a fa r m o re u p rig h t fig u r e (p r o b a b ly w it h ju s t this e n d in v ie w ) , e x e c u t in g it in p r o file a g a in st a n e u tra l b a c k g r o u n d . T h e r e is v e r y little s u g g e s tio n o f sp atial d e p th . W h a t th ere is has b e e n a c h ie v e d b y th e fo o t re stin g o n th e g r o u n d a n d , ra th e r m o r e e ffe c t iv e ly , b y th e p o s itio n in g o f th e le ft a rm a ro u n d th e sp ea r-sh a ft. T o c o m p e n ­ sate fo r th is th e artist h as m o d e lle d th e w h o le fig u r e in h ig h re lie f, f o llo w in g a fa sh io n w h ic h w e fin d o n o th e r co in s o f th e sam e p e rio d . It is n o t e w o r t h y th a t this sam e statu e - its b asic p a tte rn an d a ttrib u tes ( p r o w , d o lp h in ) n o w f ir m ly e sta b lish ed - rea p p e ars o n dies s tru c k b y n u m e ro u s p r o v in c ia l m in ts in th e E a s te rn M e d it e rra n e a n a n d m a in la n d G re e c e . W e fin d it, fo r in stan ce, o n a C o r in th ia n issue o f D o m it ia n ’ s, a n d o n co in s stru c k at A le x a n d r ia b y A n to n in u s P iu s an d C la u d iu s G o th ic u s.

33

T IT U S

(ad

79-81)

O bv. I M P T I T V S C A E S V E S P A S I A N A V G P M . H ead o f Titus, w ith lau rel-w reath , facing r. R e v . T R P V I I I I I M P X I I I I C O S V I I P P. C eres sitting facing L, w ith a torch in one hand and a sh eaf o f corn-ears in the other. N ap les, M us. N az. Fiorelli 6795. D enarius.

Cohen 27 0 ; R I C II, p. 1 1 7 , no. 8. O f th e th re e e m p e ro rs b e lo n g in g to th e F la v ia n d y n a s ty , V e sp a sia n , T it u s a n d D o m it ia n , T it u s w a s th e m o st p o p u la r. T h is v e r d ic t is b o rn e o u t b y th e a p p e lla tio n w h ic h o u r lit e r a r y so u rce s p re se rv e amor ac deliciae generis hum ani, ‘ th e d e lig h t an d d a r lin g o f th e h u m a n ra c e ’ - a n d w h ic h p r o b a b ly o r ig in a t e d in th e S e n a te . T h e ju s t ific a t io n fo r it m u st b e s o u g h t in T it u s ’ s y e a rs as sole H e a d o f S ta te , a n d it w a s s u re ly c o n fir m e d b y th e v e r y d iffe re n t r e ig n o f his su cc esso r a n d b ro th e r, D o m itia n . T it u s ’ s o ffic ia l c a re e r falls in to t w o p e rio d s. D u r in g th e first h e a cte d as c o a d ju to r to h is fa th e r V e s p a s ia n , u p to a n d in c lu d in g th e tim e (s u m m e r 70) o f th e la t te r ’ s e sta b lish m e n t as E m p e r o r . T h e seco n d c o v e rs th e y e a rs 7 9 - 8 1 , w h e n h e w a s h im s e lf sole ru le r. ( T h o u g h h e d e sig n a te d h is b ro th e r as consors et successor, h e d id n o t p r o c la im h im particeps im perii.) T h e b u lk o f T it u s ’ s m ilit a r y a c t iv it y to o k p la c e in th e e a rlie r o f th ese p e r io d s ; it w a s th en th at h e b r o u g h t th e J e w is h W a r to a su ccessfu l c o n c lu s io n , a n d w a s g ra n t e d a triu m p h in R o m e a fte r th e c a p tu re o f J e r u s a le m ( A u g u s t 70). T h e b e g in n in g o f h is re ig n , o n th e o th e r h a n d , w a s m a rre d b y a series o f disasters, in 79 a n d 80, w h ic h h a d a p r o fo u n d ly d e p re ssin g e ffe c t o n R o m e a n d th e E m p ir e . In 79 th ere to o k p la c e th at e ru p tio n o f V e s u v iu s w h ic h d e st ro y e d P o m p e ii a n d H e r c u la n e u m , a n d d e v a sta te d o th e r p lea sa n t reso rts a lo n g th e sh o res o f C a m p a n ia . T h e sam e y e a r a p la g u e e p id e m ic b r o k e o u t in R o m e , to

98

b e fo llo w e d in 80 b y a fire w h ic h w ip e d o u t so m e q u a rte rs o f th e c it y . T h e se c a ta stro p h e s m a d e p e o p le fo r g e t th e h arsh n ess w h ic h T it u s h a d e a rlie r d is­ p la y e d as C o m m a n d e r o f th e P ra e to ria n G u a rd , an d s e rv e d to h ig h lig h t his e x c e lle n t re c o rd in th e fie ld o f r e c o n stru c tio n an d rescu e w o r k . H is p o p u la r ity w a s also e n h a n c e d b y th e p u b lic w o r k s h e u n d e r­ to o k , n o t a b ly th e c o m p le tio n o f R o m e ’ s g re a t a m p h ith e a tre , th e C o lo s s e u m , w h ic h w a s in a u g u r­ ated b y o n e h u n d re d d a y s o f n o n -sto p fe a stin g . H e a c c o m p lis h e d v a rio u s o th e r su ch p ro je c ts, a ll o f th em h ig h ly v a lu a b le as p ro p a g a n d a . T h e co in s h e stru c k , h o w e v e r , s h o w n o c o m p a r ­ a b le in n o v a tio n s w h e n set b esid e th o se o f h is fa th e r V e sp a sia n , w h ic h h a d a s tro n g in flu e n c e o n his o w n . T h o u g h T it u s ’ s c h a ra c te r le n t it s e lf to in d iv id u a l in ­ te rp re ta tio n , h is p h y s ic a l a p p e a ra n c e d id n o t. Its lim ita tio n s are su g g e ste d b y th e s u r v iv in g c o in ­ p o rtra its , w h ic h all re p re se n t h im as a b la n d , a ffab le , e a s y - g o in g ty p e . T h e c o in s h o w n h ere w a s stru c k a fte r 1 J u l y 7 9 ; th e fig u r e o f C e r e s o n th e re v e rse a llu d e s to th e g r a in -s u p p ly .

34

D O M ITIAN (

81-96)

O bv. C A E S D I V I A V G V E S P F D O M I T I A N C O S V I I . H ead o f D om itian , w ith lau rel-w reath , facing r. R ev. T h e fig u re o f Spes (H ope), standing, facing 1. W ith her 1. hand she raises the hem o f her dress, w h ile her r. hand holds out a flo w er. O n either side the letters S C . N ap les, M us. N az. Fiorelli 6934. Sestertius.

Cohen 4 58 ; R I C I, p. 1 3 5 , no. 158. T h is fin e sestertiu s, w it h its p o r tr a it o f D o m it ia n n o w set in a b ro n z e fr a m e - dates fr o m e ith e r 80 o r 8 1 : th at is, fr o m th e last y e a r o f T it u s ’ s re ig n . T itu s d ie d in th e s u m m e r o f 8 1 , w h ile tr a v e llin g to th e S a b in e t o w n s h ip o f A q u a e C u t ilia e , w h e r e h is fa th e r h a d d ie d less th a n t w o y e a rs b e fo re . D o m it ia n , w h o w a s b o r n in 5 1 , w a s ju s t t w e n t y - n in e w h e n this p o rtra it w a s m a d e , an d o n th e e v e o f a ssu m in g th e p u rp le as th e last F la v ia n h e ir to th e th ro n e . T h e p o rtra it it s e lf is c le a rly in th e best tra d itio n o f R o m a n n u m is m a t ic art. T h e r e m a rk a b le d e g re e o f n o b ilit y a n d d ig n it y a ttrib u te d to th e sitter at o n c e a lig n s it w it h th a t h ig h H e lle n is tic c o n v e n t io n o f p o rtra itu re w h ic h w e h a v e a lre a d y seen e x e m p lifie d in th e s p le n d id lik en e ss o f G a lb a (P late 2 7 ), a n d o f w h ic h w e w il l fin d a n o th e r e q u a lly u n m is ta k a b le in stan c e in th e s tu d y o f N e r v a (P late 4 2). T h is h e a d o f D o m it ia n fa lls m id - w a y b e t w e e n th e t w o . O n e d e ta il w h ic h it p re se rv e s fr o m th e e a rlie r sp e c im e n (an d it is n o t a lo n e in so d o in g ) is th e a rtific ia l a r r a n g e m e n t o f th e r ib b o n w h ic h fasten s th e la u re lw r e a th a b o v e th e n a p e o f th e n e c k . T h e tre a tm e n t o f th e h a ir m a rk s an in te rm e d ia te sta g e b e t w e e n th e

100

sk e t c h y r e lie f- w o r k in th e G a lb a p o rtra it an d th e m o r e su b tle an d c o lo u r fu l te c h n iq u e e m p lo y e d fo r th at o f N e r v a . T h e r e can b e n o d o u b t th at all th ree p o rtra its sh are o n e id e n tic a l p u rp o se . T h e y m a y v a r y in th e ir in te rp re ta tio n o f in d iv id u a l fe atu res, b u t all g iv e th e h ea d th e sam e p r o u d p o ise o n its lo n g n e c k . T h e ir c o m m o n o b je c t w a s to in v e s t th e liv in g m a n w it h th a t m o r e th an h u m a n d ig n it y a p p ro p ria te to th e P rin c e p s. S o d u r in g th e q u a rt e r-c e n tu ry b e t w e e n 63 a n d 96 w e ca n d e te c t a strain o f h ig h H e lle n istic in sp ira tio n at w o r k in th e R o m e m in t, o n e s tro n g e n o u g h to p ro d u c e th ree o f th e fin e st R o m a n c o in ­ p o rtra its k n o w n to us. T h is p h e n o m e n o n , h o w e v e r , seem s to h a v e b e e n a sp ecial fe a tu re o f R o m a n c o in ­ d e sig n ra th e r th an a g e n e ra l tre n d ch a ra cte ristic o f o n e p a rtic u la r e p o c h . C o n fir m a t io n ca n b e o b ta in e d n o t o n ly fr o m th e o th e r dies stru c k b y G a lb a an d N e r v a ( o f w h ic h th ere are s o m e first-c la ss e x a m p le s in th is v o lu m e ) b u t also fr o m D o m it ia n ’ s o w n issues. P la te s 3 8 - 4 1 s h o w fo u r su ch a sso rted dies fr o m a m o n g th e m a n y th a t c o u ld h a v e b ee n selected fo r illu stra tio n .

35

D O M ITIAN

(ad

81-96)

O bv. C A E S D I V I A V G V E S P F D O M I T I A N C O S V I I . H ead o f D o m itian , w ith lau rel-w reath , facing r. R e v . T h e figu re o f Spes (H ope), standing, facin g 1. W ith her 1. hand she raises the h em o fh e r dress, w h ile her r. hand holds out a flow er. O n either side the letters S C . N ap les, M us. N az. Fiorelli 6934. Sestertius.

Cohen 4 5 S ; R I C I, p. 1 3 5 , no. 15 S .

T h e re v e rse o f th e c o in stu d ie d a b o v e (P late 34) ca rries a p o r t r a y a l o f Sp e s ( H o p e ) . D e sp ite its w e l l w o r n su b je ct, it p r o v id e s y e t fu rth e r c o n fir m a tio n o f th e h ig h a rtistic le v e l w h ic h c o in -d e s ig n a c h ie v e d d u r in g th is p e rio d . T h is g o d d e ss h ad lo n g b e e n w o r ­ s h ip p e d in th e R o m a n w o r ld (w h e re h e r c u lt e n jo y e d a g re a te r p o p u la r it y th a n it d id in G re e c e ), so m e tim e s in a sso c ia tio n w it h o th e r sim ila r d eities su ch as F o rtu n a , S a lu s (P ro sp e rity ), o r V ic t o r y . H is t o r ic a lly she ca n b e tra c e d b a c k to th e ea rlie st d a y s o f th e R e p u b lic , b u t she a c h ie v e d a sp ec ial p e a k o f p o p u ­ la r it y d u rin g th e P u n ic W a rs , w h e n A . A ttiliu s C a la tin u s b u ilt h e r a te m p le in th e F o r u m O lit o r iu m (V e g e ta b le M a r k e t ) , a n d , la te r, u n d e r C la u d iu s . H e r o ffic ia l fe st iv a l fe ll o n 1 A u g u s t , w h ic h h a p p e n e d to b e C la u d iu s ’ s b ir t h d a y ; th is c o in c id e n c e g a v e h e r c u lt a n e w a n d su b stan tia l lease o f life . A t all e v e n ts, fr o m C la u d iu s ’ s d a y o n w a r d Sp e s b e g in s to a p p e a r o n co in s o f th e E m p ir e . W e also k n o w o f v a rio u s g e m s , re lie fs, a n d co p ie s o f ea rlie r statues w h ic h p o r t r a y h e r w it h p re c is e ly th e sam e a ttrib u te s - o n e h a n d h o ld in g u p th e h e m o f h e r ro b e , th e o th e r p r o ffe r in g a flo w e r - w h ile b o th ro b e

102

a n d h a irs ty le are c le a rly in sp ire d b y a rc h a ic m o tifs . It seem s v e r y lik e ly th at th e o rig in a l m o d e l fo r th e s p e c im e n s h o w n h e re (w h e th e r d ir e c tly o r at sev e ra l r e m o v e s) w a s s o m e late fo u rt h c e n tu ry statue. T h is v ie w is c o n fir m e d b y th e p o s itio n in g o f th e g o d d e ss o n a p lin th , ra th e r th an o n th e lin e o f th e e x e rg u e . H o w e v e r , this a p p ro a c h has a lre a d y b e e n fu lly e x ­ p lo r e d b y o th e r sch o la rs, a n d I w o u ld lik e m e r e ly to p o in t o u t th e in trin sic m e rits o f th e d ie itself. O b ­ s e rv e th e sk ille d em p h a sis w it h w h ic h th e artist has p la c e d h is fig u r e , in is o la tio n b e t w e e n th e t w o g re a t letters S C th a t fo r m th e S e n a to ria l m o n o g r a m , w it h o u t a n y o th e r d e c o ra t io n o r in sc rip tio n . W e d o n o t k n o w w h e th e r th e artist in fa c t u sed a r e lie f o r a statu e as h is m o d e l, b u t th e a d a p ta tio n o f this fig u r e fo r p o r t r a y a l o n co in s is m a ste rly , w h o e v e r d e se rv es th e c re d it fo r it. O b s e r v e h o w n a t u ra lly th e g o d d e ss is p o s e d a g a in st th at p la in b a c k g r o u n d , s ta n d in g fu llfa c e , b u t w it h h e r h ea d a n d sh o u ld e rs tu rn e d a w a y a lm o s t at rig h t -a n g le s . T h e sam e g ift fo r p re cise p o s itio n in g is also v is ib le in th e to rs io n o f th ose fir m l y m o d e lle d a rm s : n o te , to o , h o w b r illia n tly th e re la tio n sh ip b e t w e e n b o d y a n d d ra p e rie s h as b ee n s u g g e s te d th r o u g h th is r e l ie f te ch n iq u e .

36

D O M ITIAN ( a d 81-96)

O bv. I M P C A E S D O M I T A V G G E R M C O S X I C E N S P O T P P . H ead o f D o m itian , w ith laurelw reath , facing r. ; on his breast the aegis. R ev. T h e E m p ero r shaking hands w ith som e official, escorted b y three soldiers, ab o ve a blazing altar. In the ex e rg u e the letters S C . N ap les, M us. N az. Fiorelli 7073. Sestertius.

Cohen 497 and pp. 4 6 8 -9 ; R I C I, p. 190, no. 208. T h is sp e c im e n , o n e o f th e fin e st p ie ces s tru c k b y D o m it ia n - o r in d e e d b y a n y R o m a n m in t - has b e e n c o n n e c te d b y s o m e sch o la rs w it h A g r ic o l a ’s re tu rn to R o m e in a d 85. It is u n lik e ly , h o w e v e r , th a t it re fe rs to a n y p a rtic u la r e v e n t, since th e sam e t y p e re m a in s in use fo r t w o c o n s e c u tiv e y e a rs. In a n y case th e aesth etic in te re st o f th e d e sig n fo r o n c e fa r o u t w e ig h s a n y h isto ric a l o r n u m is m a t ic v a lu e th e c o in m a y p ossess. D e sp ite its fa r fr o m p e rfe c t state o f p r e s e rv a t io n , th e su p e rla tiv e q u a lit y o f its c o m ­ p o s itio n a n d r e l ie f w o r k are at o n c e a p p a re n t. In th e first p la c e , th e scen e is c o m p o s e d r o u n d a fir m c e n tra l a x is - th a t is, th e s u p e rim p o s e d so ld ie rs a n d th e b e d e c k e d a lta r, b e h in d w h ic h o n e l e g io n a r y stands h o ld in g th e sta n d a rd lik e an id e a l v e rt ic a l d iv id e r . T h e p ic tu re is b a la n c e d a n d ro u n d e d o f f o n o n e sid e b y th e s o ld ie r w it h h is sh ie ld a n d sp ea r, a n d o n th e o th e r b y th e iso la te d fig u r e o f th e E m p e r o r . W r a p p e d in his lo n g to g a , a n d h a l f tu rn e d a w a y fr o m th e v ie w e r , it is h e n e v e rth e le ss, d e sp ite his s id e w a y s - o n p o s itio n , w h o d o m in a te s th e scen e, a lo o f, y e t u n m is ta k a b ly th e p rin c ip a l a c to r. M y e m p h a sis so fa r h as b e e n o n th e sce n e ’ s v irtu e s as a c o m p o s itio n , a n d th e s trik in g w a y in w h ic h it

has b e e n a c c o m m o d a te d to th e c irc u la r sp atial lim ita tio n s th at a c o in im p o se s. B u t d e sp ite th is, an d th e fa c t th a t s o m e o f th e fig u re s ( D o m it ia n h im s e lf, fo r in stan ce) m a y w e ll h a v e b ee n ta k e n fr o m a re lie f, th e d ie -c u t te r ’ s o w n d e lic a c y o f te c h n iq u e a n d sense o f s ty le still re m a in s o m e th in g q u ite o u t o f th e o r d in a r y . H e e x p lo re s ce rta in p ro b le m s o f p e rsp e c­ tiv e w h ic h w e h a v e a lre a d y seen ta c k le d o n co in s s tru c k b y N e r o an d G a lb a , b u t w h ic h are re s o lv e d w it h fa r g re a te r success h ere . O b s e r v e , in this c o n ­ n e c tio n , th e w a y h e flatten s o f f th e r e lie f w h e n b lo c k in g in b a c k g r o u n d fig u re s, an d , a b o v e all, the e ffec t h e o b ta in s b y p re se n tin g th e t w o p ro ta g o n ists in s h a rp ly c o n tra ste d p o stu re s, o n e fu ll fa ce , th e o th e r h a l f tu rn e d a w a y . E v e n th e a ltar a b o v e w h ic h th e ir cla sp e d h an d s m e e t is seen in p e rsp e c tiv e . L ast b u t n o t least, c o n sid e r th e fig u r e o f the E m p e r o r : u n c o n s tra in e d , y e t at th e sam e tim e fir m ly static, his b o d y e x e c u t e d in s tro n g r e l ie f u n d e r its c o n c e a lin g ro b es.

37

D O M ITIAN

(a

d

81-96)

Ob v. I M P C A E S D O M I T I A N A V G G E R M C O S X I . H ead o f D o m itian , w ith lau rel-w reath , facin g r. ; on his breast the aegis. R e v . T h e E m p ero r stands facing 1., head veiled, w ith a patera in his r. hand, offering a libation on a blazing altar w h ich stands before a shrine. In the shrine is the im age o f a fem ale deity, generally identified as M in e rva. T h e scene is flanked b y the tw o letters S C . N ap les, M us. N az . Fiorelli 7086. Sestertius.

Cohen 4 91 ; R I C l , p. 186 , no. 256. T h is sestertiu s dates fr o m a d 8 $, th e sa m e y e a r as th at in w h ic h th e p r e v io u s e x a m p le w a s s tru c k (see P la te 36 ). T h o u g h w e c a n n o t a ttrib u te it w it h a n y c e r­ ta in ty to th e sam e a rtist, th ere is n o t th e slig h est d o u b t th at it stem s fr o m th e sam e o ffic ia l tra d itio n , a n d e x e m p lifie s th e sa m e h ig h le v e l o f a rtistic a c h ie v e m e n t w h ic h ch a ra c te riz e s a ll D o m it ia n ’ s issues. T h e scen e p o r t r a y e d is s im p le r th a n th e o n e w e h a v e ju s t e x a m in e d : th e o n ly fig u r e it co n ta in s is th e E m p e r o r h im s e lf, w h o is s h o w n velato capite, in th e act o f s a c rific in g b e fo r e s o m e g o d d e s s ’ s sh rin e. T h e id e n t ific a tio n o f this g o d d e s s w it h M in e r v a d o es n o t rest o n a n y s p e c ific e v id e n c e , b u t d e riv e s fr o m th e tra d itio n w h ic h p re se n ts D o m it ia n as h er en th u sia stic d e v o t e e ; she w a s , o f co u rse , th e p a tro n a lik e o f a rm s a n d o f le tte rs, b o th o f th e m fie ld s in w h ic h th e E m p e r o r a sp ire d to e x c e l. T h e in te re st o f th is sp e c im e n lies n o t so m u c h in w h a t it tells us a b o u t r e lig io n as in th e e v id e n c e it o ffe rs c o n c e r n in g n u m is m a t ic a rt. It d e riv e s d ir e c tly fr o m a ce rta in sc h o o l o f re p re se n ta tio n a l relie fs,

106

w h ic h d e v e lo p e d its o w n ch a ra cte ristic tra d itio n in sc u lp tu re b e t w e e n th e first an d seco n d ce n tu rie s a d . T h e m o st o u tsta n d in g e x a m p le s o f this tre n d in the fie ld o f c o in -d e sig n are th e scenes o n th e s o -c a lle d ‘ m e d a llio n s ’ , s o m e o f w h ic h possess q u ite e x c e p tio n a l in te rest (see, e.g ., th e m e d a llio n o f A n to n in u s P iu s in th e C a b in e t des M é d a ille s, P a ris). Y e t th e p re se n t s p e c im e n ca n h o ld its o w n w it h a n y o f th e m fo r c la r it y a n d s im p lic ity o f c o m p o s itio n - n o t to m e n t io n its a b ilit y to selec t a n d r e p r o d u c e o n ly th e m o s t essen tial fe a tu re s, a n d th a t sp ec ial a ir o f p riv a te a b s o rp tio n w it h w h ic h it in v e sts th e sa c rifice . H e re , ju s t as in th e scen e o n P la te 3 6 , th e d ie -c u tte r has g o n e o u t o f h is w a y to p o r t r a y h is s u b je c t in p e r­ s p e c tiv e . B y fo r e s h o rt e n in g th e s tru c tu re o f th e sh rin e a n d s e ttin g th e d e c o ra te d a lta r a t an a n g le to it, h e h as c o n t r iv e d to su g g e s t a t ria n g u la r sp ace in d e p th . T h e v e ile d fig u r e o f th e E m p e r o r is e n d o w e d w it h g re a t c a lm n e ss a n d n o b ilit y ; th is q u a lity , d e sp ite th e d iffe re n c e in p o s tu re , at o n c e lin k s it w it h th e D o m it ia n s h o w n o n P la te 3 6 , a n d a t th e sam e tim e rela te s it to o th e r s im ila r fig u re s in th e h ig h e st tra d itio n o f h isto ric a l r e lie f- w o r k .

38

D O M ITIAN ( a d 81-96)

O bv. I M P C A E S D O M I T A V G G E R M P M T R P V i l i C E N S P E R P P . H ead o f D o m itian , w ith lau rel-w reath , facing r. R ev. C O S X I I I I L V D S A E C A P O P . A person seated facing r. on a stool, w h ich in turn rests on a dais ; in the b ack g ro u n d a tem ple. H e accepts the offering o f a corn-sheaf, m ade b y tw o toga-clad figures, one o f w h o m is h old in g it ou t to him . R o u n d the dais, the letters F R V G A C ; in the exerg u e, S C . N ap les, M us. N az . Fiorelli 7 16 3 . Sestertius.

Cohen 8 7; R I C II, p. 2 0 1, no. 3 75, pi. V I, no. 97, and pp. 15 0 - 3 . F o r these G am es, see D arem berg-Saglio s.v., Saeculares L u d i; see also the b ib lio g ra p h y attached to Plate 39. T h is p la te a n d th e th ree f o llo w in g p o r t r a y th ree m o m e n ts d u r in g th e le n g t h y c e re m o n ie s c o n n e c te d w it h th e L u d i Saeculares, a fe stiv a l c o m m e m o r a t in g th e c e n te n a ry o f R o m e ’ s fo u n d a tio n . (P lates 39 a n d 40 s h o w d iffe re n t v e rs io n s o f th e sam e scene.) T h o u g h th ese G a m e s s h o u ld h a v e b ee n ce le b ra te d o n c e e v e r y c e n tu ry , a lw a y s d u r in g th e sam e y e a r, th e y d id n o t in fa c t ta k e p la c e at a n y t h in g lik e r e g u la r in te rv a ls. T r a d it io n re c o rd s a series o f v e r y u n e v e n g a p s b e t w e e n ea ch c e le b ra tio n . T h e first is d a te d 24 9 b c ; th e s e c o n d t o o k p la c e in 1 7 b c , u n d e r A u g u s tu s. S e c u la r G a m e s w e r e also sta g e d b y C la u d iu s in a d 46, b y D o m it ia n in 88, b y A n to n in u s P iu s in 14 6 , a n d , fin a lly , b y S e p tim iu s S e v e ru s in 20 4 a n d P h ilip in 2 4 7 . T h is ir r e g u la r it y w a s d u e , in th e first in stan c e, to th e G r a e c o - R o m a n w o r ld ’ s s o m e w h a t h a z y n o tio n s o f w h a t ‘ a c e n t u r y ’ m e a n t, w h ic h g a v e sco p e fo r m o r e th a n o n e s y ste m o f c a lc u la tio n ; b u t it is

108

c le a r th a t th e w ish e s o f th e re ig n in g E m p e r o r (n ot to m e n tio n h is n a tu ra l d e sire fo r p o p u la rity ) also p la y e d a la r g e p a rt in it. T h e c o in s h o w n h e re dates fr o m 88, a n d is o n e o f a series w h ic h D o m it ia n issu ed to c o m m e m o r a te the o c c a sio n . T h e scen e rep re se n te d , h o w e v e r , d id n o t fo r m p a rt o f th e fe stiv a l p r o p e r ( w h ic h b e g a n o n e ith e r 3 1 M a y o r 1 J u n e , an d laste d fo r th ree d a y s an d n ig h ts), b u t b e lo n g s to o n e o f th e p re lim in a r y c e re m o n ie s. F irst, a h e ra ld a n n o u n c e d th e o p e n in g o f th e G a m e s . A ft e r this p r o c la m a t io n , as D o m it ia n ’ s co in s m a k e cle a r, th ere fo llo w e d t w o sep arate rites, o n e p u r ific a t o r y , th e o th e r a s y m b o lic o ffe rin g . In th e first th e Q u in d e c e m v ir i (a B o a r d o f C o m m is s io n ­ ers, fifte e n in n u m b e r) , w h o h a d ch a rg e o f th e G a m e s, d is trib u te d c e rta in tra d itio n a l a g en ts o f p u rific a tio n (e.g . su lp h u r) a m o n g th e p e o p le . In th e seco n d , th e p e o p le th e m se lv e s m a d e an o ffe r in g o f g ra in . T h is fin a l scen e is th e o n e s h o w n o n th e sestertius o p p o site . T h e t w o fig u re s o n th e r ig h t re p re se n t the R o m a n P e o p le , m a k in g th e ir c o lle c t iv e h a r v e s t -o ffe r in g to th e seated fig u r e w h o , a c c o rd in g to th e in sc rip tio n , Frug[es] A c[cepit], is p lea se d to a cce p t it.

39

D O M ITIAN ( a d 81^96)

O bv. I M P C A E S D O M I T A V G G E R M P M T R P O T V i l i C E N S P E R P P. H ead o f D om itian , w ith lau rel-w reath , facing r. R ev. C O S X I I I I L V D S A E C F E C . T h e E m p ero r stands facing L, in a toga but bareheaded, m akin g sacrifice on a lit altar set in fron t o f a h exastyle tem ple, assisted b y a flute-player and a lyre -p la ye r. In the exergu e the letters S C . N ap les, M us. N az . Fiorelli 7 16 6 . As.

Cohen 8 5 ; R I C I, p. 202, no. 38 5a ; cj. D ressel, ‘N u m m i A u gu sti et D o m itian i ad ludos saecuìares pertinentes’ , in Ephem. Epigr. 8 (18 9 1) , pp. 3 io ff. ; P. V .H ill, ‘ N otes on the Ludi Saeculares o f a d 88’, in A tti del C .I .N . (R o m e 19 6 1), vo i. II, pp. 2 7 7 ff., w h ich offers a different inter­ pretation o f the scene; cj. also the b ib lio g ra p h y to Plate 38. T o w a r d s th e en d o f th e last c e n tu r y D re sse l w r o t e an a c c u ra te a n d w e ll- d o c u m e n t e d a rtic le , re c o n stru c t­ in g th e p a tte rn o f th e L u d i Saeculares fr o m th e c o m ­ b in e d e v id e n c e o f lite r a r y testimonia an d c o m m e m o ­ r a tiv e co in s - in p a rtic u la r th e series o f sestertii, d u p o n d ii, a n d asses w h ic h D o m it ia n issu e d fo r p r o p a g a n d a p u rp o se s in a d 88. A s a resu lt w e can c le a r ly id e n t ify th e scen e p o r t r a y e d o n o u r c h o se n sp e c im e n s, a n d k n o w ju s t w h a t p la c e it o c c u p ie d in th e c e r e m o n y as a w h o le . A ft e r th e p r e lim in a r y ritu a ls w e r e o v e r (cf. P la te 38 ), th e o r d e r o f e v e n ts w a s as fo llo w s . O n th e first n ig h t th re e b la c k sh eep a n d th ree b la c k g o a ts w e r e sa c rific e d to th e Fates. A t d a w n th e n e x t m o r n in g th ree w h it e b u lls w e r e o ffe re d u p to Ju p it e r C a p it o ­ lin u s. O n th e s e c o n d n ig h t th ere fo llo w e d th e s a c rifice to E ilit h y ia , th e g o d d e ss o f c h ild b irth . O n this o c c a s io n th ere w e r e n o l iv in g v ic t im s, sa c rific ia l

1 10

cak es b e in g e m p lo y e d in stead . T h is , in all lik e lih o o d , is th e scen e r e p ro d u c e d h ere , in t w o d iffe re n t v e rsio n s (cf. P la te 40). D u r in g th e seco n d d a y e ith e r th e E m p e r o r h im s e lf o r th e magister (P resid en t) o f th e C o lle g e o f th e Q u in d e c e m v ir i, w h o p re sid e d o v e r th e G a m e s , m a d e sa c rific e to J u n o , an d re a d o u t b e fo r e th e a sse m b le d m a tro n s a p r a y e r ad d resse d to th e g o d d e ss. T h is p r a y e r th e lad ie s rep ea te d , k n e e lin g in su p p lic a tio n , th eir faces e ith e r ra ise d h e a v e n w a rd s (P late 4 1) o r lo o k in g stra ig h t b e fo re th e m . O n th e th ird n ig h t th e E m p e r o r s a c rific e d a b la c k s o w to E a rt h . T h e th ird a n d fin a l d a y w a s co n se c ra te d to A p o llo . A s o le m n p ro c e ssio n set o u t fr o m th e P a la tin e an d m a d e its w a y to th e C a p it o l (the m o d e rn C a m p id o g lio ) , le d b y a m ix e d c h o ir o f t w e n ty - s e v e n y o u n g m e n a n d tw e n t y - s e v e n c h ild re n , fo r w h o m H o r a c e c o m p o s e d h is C arm en Saeculare ( 1 7 b c ). T h e series o f co in s stru c k b y D o m it ia n p o r t r a y the m o r e im p o r ta n t aspects o f e v e r y c e r e m o n y , in a n u m b e r o f v e rsio n s. T h e se h a v e a sp ecial in te rest, n o t m e r e ly o n a c c o u n t o f th eir s u b je c t-m a tte r, b u t also th r o u g h th e ir liv e lin e ss a n d re a lism , as I h o p e to s h o w in th e fo l lo w in g p a g es.

40

D O M ITIAN

(a d

81-96)

O bv. I M P C A E S D O M I T A V G G E R M P M T R P O T V i l i C E N S P E R P P. H ead o f D o m itian , w ith lau rel-w reath , facing r. R e v . C O S X I I I I L V D S A E C F E C . T h e E m p ero r, standing facing 1., in a toga, offers sacrifice on a lit altar, outside a tem ple. In front o f him are a flute-player and a lyre -p la ye r. In the ex e rg u e the letters S C . N ap les, M us. N az . Fiorelli 7 16 9 . As.

C f. b ib lio g ra p h y to Plates 38 and 39.

T h e r e v e rse o f th is, it s c a rc e ly n eed s s a y in g , s h o w s us a v a r ia n t v e r s io n o f th e s a c rific e to E ilit h y ia r e p r o ­ d u c e d o n th e p r e v io u s p a g e . T h is tim e , h o w e v e r , I a m n o t so m u c h c o n c e rn e d w it h th ese co in s fr o m an a n tiq u a ria n s ta n d p o in t; I w o u ld lik e , ra th e r, to e m p h a siz e c e rta in p r o b le m s o f re p re s e n ta tio n an d s ty le w it h w h ic h t h e y c o n fr o n t us, b o th in d iv id u a lly a n d as a g r o u p . T h e d iffe re n c e s b e t w e e n o u r t w o sp e c im e n s a re n o t in fa c t v e r y s trik in g : all th e y a m o u n t to is a re­ p o s itio n in g o f th e flu t e -p la y e r in re la tio n to th e a ltar. In th e p re se n t v e r s io n th e ce n tra l a ltar is p la c e d in th e fo r e g r o u n d , b u t m a sk s th e lo w e r p a rt o f th e flu te p la y e r ’ s b o d y ; b y p la c in g h im b e h in d it th e artist a c h ie v e s a s u g g e s tio n o f d e p th . In o u r first e x ­ a m p le , h o w e v e r , th e d ie -c u tte r, w h ile k e e p in g th e g a rla n d e d a ltar in th e fo r e g r o u n d , has sh ifte d b o th m u sic ia n s to th e le ft o f it. T h e w h o le scen e th us takes p la c e a lo n g a sin g le sp atial lin e d r a w n p a ra lle l to th e h e x a s ty le te m p le , w h ic h fo rm s its b a c k g r o u n d . T h e se c o n d d ie , w it h o n e fig u r e h a lf-c o n c e a le d b e h in d th e a ltar, is lin k e d c o m p o s itio n a lly in this

112

re sp e c t w it h t w o fu rth e r co in s fr o m th e sam e series (n o t re p ro d u c e d h ere ), w h ic h are th e m se lv e s dis­ tin g u is h e d b y c o n tra s tin g sty le s o f b a c k g r o u n d a rc h ite c tu re . In th ese co in s w e h a v e an id e n tic a l scen e, b u t fu rth e r e n ric h e d b y th e a d d itio n o f a fo u rt h fig u r e , r e c lin in g in th e fo r e g r o u n d , at the le ft -h a n d c o rn e r o f th e p ic tu re . T h is is v e r y p r o b a b ly a p e rso n ific a tio n o f th e T ib e r , in tro d u c e d h e re as a m ea n s o f id e n t ify in g th e c o n te x t ra th e r th an in d e fe re n c e to th e o v e r a ll d e sig n . In d ee d , w e h a v e n u m e ro u s d iffe re n t v e rs io n s o f this scen e (the sam e a p p lie s to o th e r dies), a fa c t w h ic h sh o w s h o w fre e a h a n d ea ch in d iv id u a l c u tte r w a s g iv e n w h e n in te r­ p re tin g s o m e o ffic ia l scen e. S im ila r v a ria tio n s can , as w e m ig h t e x p e c t , also b e d e tec te d in th e sty le s o f the d iffe re n t dies.

4i

D O M IT IA N ( a d 81-96)

O bv. I M P C A E S D O M I T A V G G E R M P M T R P V i l i C E N S P E R P P. H ead o f D om itian , w ith lau rel-w reath , facing r. R ev. C O S X I I I L V D S A E C F E C . T etrastyle tem ­ ple, w ith eagle on the pedim ent. O utside it stands the E m p ero r, facing r., reading out a prayer before a g ro u p o f figures w hose hands are raised in supplication. N ap les, M us. N az . Fiorelli 7 16 0 . Sestertius.

Cohen 80; R I C I, p. 2 0 1, no. 377, to p. 15 3 . H e r e w e h a v e , q u ite c le a r ly , a scen e in te n d e d to p o r t r a y th e ritu al p r a y e r w h ic h th e E m p e r o r rea d o u t to th e a sse m b le d R o m a n m a tro n s, a n d w h ic h t h e y re p e a te d a fte r h im , d u rin g th e se co n d d a y ’ s ce re m o n ie s . (T h is d a y w a s sacred to J u n o .) T h e p re se n t v e r s io n is b y n o m ea n s th e m o st s k ilfu l, as w e ca n tell b y c o m p a r in g it w it h a n o th e r s im ila r d ie , o n w h ic h th e m a in d e fec ts h a v e b ee n g r e a t ly re d u c e d . T h o u g h th e c o m p o s itio n is m o r e o r less id e n tic a l, o u r a rtist h as b r o u g h t th e te m p le u p in to th e fo r e g r o u n d ; c o n s e q u e n t ly h e h as b ee n fo rc e d to c ra m his k n o t o f m a tro n s in to o n e c o rn e r, as th o u g h t h e y w e r e t im id ly p e e p in g r o u n d the fa r side o f th e te m p le . T h e d is p r o p o r tio n a t e size o f th e E m p e r o r ’ s fig u r e , w h e n c o m p a r e d b o th w it h th eirs a n d w it h th e te m p le a rc h ite c tu re in th e b a c k g r o u n d , is th us s tr o n g ly e m p h a siz e d . T h e resu lt is b o th u n n a tu ra l a n d in ep t. O n th e o th e r d ie th e te m p le is re n d e re d in d e ep p e rsp e c tiv e , so th at th e m a tro n s (th e ir h an d s o u t­ s tre tc h e d to w a r d s th e E m p e r o r ra th e r th a n raised a b o v e th e ir heads) ca n be p la c e d w h e r e w e w o u ld n a t u r a lly e x p e c t th e m : in fro n t o f th e te m p le , a lo n g

th e lin e o f th e e x e r g u e , c o n c e a lin g th e lo w e r h a l f o f th e t w o fin a l c o lu m n s . T h e m a in fig u r e is still d is­ p r o p o r t io n a t e ly la rg e , b u t th e g e n e ra l c o m p o s itio n o f th e scen e has b e e n fa r b e tte r o rg a n iz e d , e v e n d o w n to th e p e rfe c t a d a p ta tio n o f th e r o o f-g u t te r s to fit a n u m is m a tic c o n te x t. T h e s e fe w b r i e f re m a rk s m a y p e rh a p s g iv e us so m e in d ic a tio n o f th e a rtistic p ro b le m s asso cia ted w ith this g r o u p o f issues. O n e ’ s v e r d ic t o n th e m stem s as m u c h fr o m in d iv id u a l a n a ly sis as fr o m a g e n e ra l c o m p a r a tiv e s u r v e y . T h e first p r o b le m c o n fro n tin g us is th at o f d iv e rg e n t a p p ro a c h e s b y v a rio u s d ie c u tte rs. T h e se co n d is sty listic . W e m u st iso la te the a rtists’ p la c e in th e m a in tra d itio n ( la rg e ly ‘ p o p u la r ’ ), a n d e v a lu a te th eir o c c a sio n a l e x p e rim e n ts w ith p e rsp e c tiv e a n d fo r m a l d e sig n . T h e se in fa ct lo o k b a c k to the J u l io - C la u d ia n era, w ith its s tro n g cla ssic iz in g tr e n d ; th e y a re fa r less ch a ra cte ristic o f th e F la v ia n p e rio d , to w h ic h th e issues in fa ct b e lo n g a n d w h ic h is re p re se n te d h ere b y o n ly an o c c a sio n a l d ie.

42

N E R V A ( a d 96-98)

O bv. I M P N E R V A C A E S A V G P M T R P C O S II P P . H ead o f N e rv a , w ith lau rel-w reath , facin g r. R e v . C O N G I A R P R . T h e E m p ero r, facin g r., pre­ sides o v e r a distribution o f largess to the people. (A full description o f this typ e w ill be fou n d in the text attached to Plate 43). N ap les, M us. N az . Fioretti 7256. Sestertius.

Cohen 3 7 ; R I C II, p. 227, no. 56.

T h e sp e c im e n r e p ro d u c e d h e re , w h ic h d ates fr o m th e first y e a r o f N e r v a ’ s b r ie f re ig n , has a scen e o f la rg e ss -d is trib u tio n o n o n e side, a n d a s p le n d id p o rtra it o f th e E m p e r o r , h is fe atu res n o b ly id e a liz e d , o n th e o th e r. A s is w e ll k n o w n , N e r v a ’ s ru le w a s n o t d is tin g u is h e d b y a n y g re a t m ilit a r y u n d e r ta k in g s ; h e d e v o t e d a ll h is e n e rg ie s to re o r g a n iz in g p u b lic a d m in is tra tio n a n d fin a n c e , an essen tial step a fte r th e d isastro u s m ess in w h ic h D o m it ia n h a d le ft th em . N e r v a ’ s n a m e r e m a in e d p e r m a n e n t ly asso cia ted w it h a series o f w is e re g u la tio n s th a t w o n h im a re p u ta tio n fo r ju s tic e , m o d e ra tio n , a n d h o n e sty . T h r e e m e a su re s in p a rtic u la r le ft th e ir m a rk o n th e c o in a g e : th e e lim in a tio n o f abu ses th a t h a d c re p t in to J u d a e a ’ s ta x - c o lle c t in g sy s te m u n d e r D o m it ia n ; th e re o r g a n iz a tio n o f th e vehiculatio, o r Im p e ria l p o s tin g s e rv ic e (re sp o n s ib ility fo r th is, w it h in th e b o u n d a rie s o f Ita ly , h a d o r ig in a lly la in w it h ea ch in d iv id u a l c it y a lo n g th e ro u t e , b u t w a s n o w tra n sfe rre d e x c lu s iv e ly to th e State) ; a n d th e se ttin g -u p o f a p e rm a n e n t o r g a n iz a t io n to g u a ra n te e R o m e ’ s g r a in -s u p p ly . In th is so rt o f c o n te x t th e id e a o f a ch a rita b le d is trib u ­ tio n , such as w e fin d re p re se n te d o n P la te 43 an d in d e e d o n th e co in s o f o th e r E m p e r o r s (cf. P la te 4 5), is p e r fe c t ly n a t u r a l; b esid es, it w a s w e ll-e s ta b lis h e d tra d itio n o f th e R o m a n S tate .

Q u ite a p a rt fr o m th e scen e o n th e re v e rse , w h ic h w e sh all c o n sid e r p re se n tly , th e E m p e r o r ’ s p o rtra it is a r e m a rk a b le p ie c e o f w o r k , in th e h ig h H e lle n istic tra d itio n . W e h a v e a lre a d y seen e x a m p le s o f this in p o rtra its o f G a lb a (P late 27) a n d D o m itia n (P late 34). N e r v a , w h o w a s s ix t y -t h r e e at th e tim e , has n o t so m u c h b e e n re ju v e n a te d as p o r tr a y e d sub specie aeternitatis. T h o u g h all his m o re ch a racteristic fe a tu re s a re re ta in e d , t h e y h a v e b e e n m o d ifie d in to a c o n sisten t e x p re ss io n o f stern n o b ilit y . T h e r e is g re a t sk ill in th e w a y r e lie f te c h n iq u e has b ee n u sed to so fte n th e h a rs h ly v ig o r o u s stru c tu re o f th a t b o n y fa ce ; th e sa m e a p p lies to th e la v is h a n d l iv e l y tre at­ m e n t o f th e h a ir - n o t to m e n t io n th e p o s itiv e a ffe c ta tio n o f d e sig n v is ib le in th e rib b o n b in d in g N e r v a ’ s w r e a th .

43

N E R V A ( a d 96-98)

O bv. I M P N E R V A C A E S A V G P M T R P C O S II P P. H ead o f N e rv a , w ith lau rel-w reath , facin g r. R e v . C O N G I A R P R . U p o n a h igh dais sit the E m ­ peror, in his curule chair, and in fron t o f h im another person, on a stool. T h is stool is placed before a plinth w ith a statue o f M in e rva on it. T h e goddess is arm ed ; in her 1. outstretched arm she holds a spear, in her r. a small o w l. T h e second seated person is facin g r., like the E m p ero r, and sim ilarly dressed, in a toga. H e is leaning fo rw ard , and g iv in g som ething to a m an w h o is m oun t­ in g the steps, fo llo w e d b y a child. D o w n b elo w stands an assistant, h old in g up a tally. In the ex e rg u e the letters

SC. N ap les, M us. N az . Fiorelli 7256. Sestertius.

Cohen 3 7 ; R I C II, p. 227, no. 5 6 ; A .M e rlin , Les R evers monétaires de Vempereur N erva (Paris 1906), pp. 6 6 -7 2 , w ith b ib lio g ra p h y . T h e scen e h e re s h o w n is a congiarius, o r d is trib u tio n o f p u b lic la rg e ss. A n y a tte m p t to in te rp re t it sh o u ld at lea st m a k e s o m e m e n t io n o f th e w id e l y d iffe rin g o p in io n s it has p r o v o k e d a m o n g sch o la rs. F irst, w e h a v e to a d m it th a t th e re is n o e v id e n c e th a t w o u ld e n a b le us to id e n t ify , b e y o n d a n y re a so n a b le d o u b t, th e p e rso n a c tu a lly d is trib u t in g th e la rg e ss it s e lf a lt h o u g h s o m e h a v e a r g u e d th a t h e m u st b e th e Praefectus A n n o n a e, o r an Im p e ria l q u a rs to r. S e c o n d ly , w h a t re a so n is th ere fo r th e p re se n ce o f th e statue o f M in e r v a ? I in c lin e to w a r d s th e t h e o r y p ro p o s e d b y R o s t o v t z e ff, w h o t o o k it to b e a w e ll - k n o w n fe a tu re o f th e p la c e w h e r e feasts w e r e h eld . T h ir d l y , I a m in c lin e d to q u e stio n th e e x is tin g e x p la n a tio n s o f th at fig u r e s ta n d in g b e lo w w it h a t a lly in h is h an d . H e has b e e n v a r io u s ly id e n tifie d as a p e rso n ific a tio n

118

o f L ib e r a lit y , a s o ld ie r, o r e v e n a w o m a n . B u t his sh o rt tu n ic ra th e r su g g ests an ‘ assistan t’ , in th e m o st g e n e ra liz e d sense o f th e w o r d . I f this in te rp re ta tio n o f th e scen e is n e c e ssa rily b rie f, it is also tru e th a t o n e c o u ld say a g o o d deal m o r e a b o u t its sty le , w h ic h m a k e s it o n e o f th e m o st e n jo y a b le a n d ch a ra c te ristic ex p re ssio n s o f ‘ p o p u la r a r t’ to b e fo u n d o n a n y c o in d u rin g th e E m p ir e . T h e m o st s trik in g th in g a b o u t it is th e a ttitu d e , th e p o s itio n in g o f th e v a rio u s c h a racters - r e la x e d , t o t a lly in fo r m a l, w it h o u t a tra ce o f e m b a rra ssm e n t o r c o n stra in t. In p a rtic u la r, c o n sid e r th e m a n sittin g in fr o n t, w h o a c tu a lly a p p ea rs to b e s ittin g a strid e his s to o l, a n d th e a p p lic a n t c la m b e rin g u p th e steps o n to th e dais. O b s e r v e , to o , h o w s im p ly a n d e c o n o m i­ c a lly th e d ie -c u tte r has su g g e ste d p e rsp e c tiv e - th e m e re st h in t in th e u p p e r lin e o f th e dais, e v e n w h e n fa c e d w it h th e p r o b le m o f a m a tc h in g s tra ig h t lin e in th e e x e r g u e .

44

N E R V A ( a d 96-98)

O bv. I M P N E R V A C A E S A V O P M T R P II C O S I I I P P. H ead o f N e rv a , w ith lau rel-w reath , facin g r. R ev. F O R T V N A A V G V S T . Fortun e standing, facin g 1., w ith a cornucopia in one hand and the other resting on a rudder. N ap les, M us. N az. Piorelli 72 77. A ureus.

Cohen 7 0 - 7 7 ; R I C II, p. 225, no. 2 8 ; cf. K .L a n g e , Karakterköpfe der Weltgeschichte (M onaco 1949), pi. 48.

T h is g o ld p ie c e dates fr o m a d 9 7. T h e p o rtra it o f N e r v a w h ic h it ca rries d iffe rs ra d ic a lly fr o m th at p re se n te d o n th e sestertiu s w e h a v e ju s t e x a m in e d . T h e c o n tra st is so s trik in g a n d d e lib e ra te th at th e o n e has b e e n ta k e n as a q u a s i-c a ric a tu re o f th e o th e r, a p a te n t ly a b su rd th e o r y w h e n o n e is d e a lin g w it h ‘ o ffic ia l’ e v id e n c e su ch as th e c o in a g e . N e v e rth e le s s , ju s t as it is c le a r th a t th e a rtist w h o cu t th e d ie fo r th e sestertius set h im s e lf th e task o f s o fte n in g N e r v a ’ s fe a tu re s in to a m o u ld o f l o f t y d ig n it y , so th e re can b e n o d o u b t th at th e c re a to r o f th e au reu s d e lib e ra t e ly a cc e n tu a te d a ll h is m o d e l’ s m o st ch a ra c te ristic fe a tu re s, so th a t th e re su lta n t p r o file b o rd e rs o n th e g ro te sq u e . O b s e r v e , in th is c o n n e c tio n , th e h e a v y in d e n ta tio n o f th e fro n ta l rid g e s , a n d th at g re a t e a g le ’ s b e a k o f a n o se , its sh ap e u n d e rlin e d an d e m p h a siz e d b y th e h a u g h t ily d isd a in fu l m o u th . A r t is t ic a lly s p e a k in g , d e sp ite h is g re a te r s im p lic ity o f a p p ro a c h , th is c u tte r la c k s his p re d e c e s so r’ s te ch ­ n ica l sk ill ; to re a liz e this o n e n e e d o n ly e x a m in e th e flo rid , o v e r -c o n t r a s te d p la n e s o f th e n e c k , a n d th e sla p d a sh tr e a tm e n t o f th e h a ir, still v is ib le d e sp ite th e fa ct th a t th is sp e c im e n is s o m e w h a t w o r n .

One interesting result o f the comparison between these two coins is the discovery that the portrait in 120

th e h ig h H e lle n is tic tra d itio n b e lo n g s to th e b ro n z e issue, a n d n o t, as m ig h t b e a ssu m ed , to th e g o ld . F u r th e r m o r e , it is w o r t h n o tin g th at as Im p e ria l p o rtra its g o , th o se o f N e r v a h a v e a ro u se d re la tiv e ly little in te rest. It has also b e e n said th a t his lik en e ss ‘ is fa it h fu lly a n d co n s iste n tly r e p ro d u c e d o n e v e r y c o in ; h is a lm o s t g ro te sq u e u g lin ess w a s n e ith e r so fte n e d d o w n n o r id e a liz e d ’ . T h e t w o co in s r e p ro d u c e d h ere , as w e h a v e seen, w o u ld a lo n e suffice to d iscre d it such a sta te m e n t ; b u t it m a y b e w o r t h a d d in g ( h o w e v e r o b v io u s th e tru ism ) th at fo r e v e r y d ie cu t w e h a v e o n e m o r e in d e p e n d e n t p o rtra it. O n e e x a m p le w ill su ffice, th e sestertiu s p u b lis h e d b y L a n g e , w h ic h stands m id w a y b e t w e e n o u r t w o e x a m p le s , an d in s o m e c h a ra c te ristic te ch n ica l d etails lo o k s fo r w a r d to th e ty p e o f p o rtra itu re th at a p p e a re d d u rin g T r a ja n ’ s re ig n .

45

T R A JA N

(ad

98-117)

Obu. I M P C A E S N E R V A T R A I A N A V G G E R M D A C I C V S P M . H ead o f T rajan, w ith lau rel-w reath , facin g r. R e v . C O S V C O N G I A R S E C V N D . T rajan , seated on a dais, facing 1., presides o v e r a distribution o f largess. A person seated in fron t o f the E m p ero r, on a separate platfo rm , is distributing the b o u n ty -m o n e y to a R o m an citizen, w h o is seen clam bering up a ladder tow ards the top o f the dais. In the b ack g ro u n d there stands a figu re h old in g a tally, togeth er w ith som e other object. T h e latter is far fro m clear, and has elicited a n um ber o f explanations fro m variou s w riters. N ap les, M us. N az. Fioretti 7 4 10 . Sestertius.

Cohen 6 1 ; R I C II, p. 277, no. 450. H e r e w e h a v e a n o th e r congiarius, th is tim e o n a sestertiu s o f T r a ja n ’ s; it w a s issu e d b y th e R o m e m in t in 10 4 (o r p o s s ib ly 10 3 ) , a n d , as th e in sc rip tio n tells us, c o m m e m o r a te d T r a ja n ’ s seco n d congiarius, w h ic h w a s e x c e p t io n a lly la v is h a n d m u n ific e n t. H is first h a d b e e n h e ld in a d 99, o n h is a rr iv a l in R o m e as E m p e r o r , a fte r th e d e ath o f N e r v a . It is in te re s tin g to c o m p a r e this sestertiu s w it h th e o n e s tru c k b y N e r v a , a n d su ch a c o m p a ris o n is th e m a in rea so n fo r re p r o d u c in g it h ere . In th e first p la c e , th e p r o b le m s o f h isto ric a l in te rp re ta tio n to w h ic h th e e a rlie r scen e g a v e rise re c u r h e re also. T h e r e is n o su re m ea n s o fid e n t ify in g th e fig u r e h o ld ­ in g u p a ta lly (?), g e n e r a lly s u p p o se d to b e L ib e r a lit y p e rso n ifie d . T h e c e n tra l statu e (? M in e r v a ) in th e e a rlie r v e r s io n is h e re re p la c e d b y an o b je c t w h ic h sch o la rs d e sc rib e , q u ite a r b it r a r ily , as a trip o d . O v e r a n d a b o v e su ch d e ta ils, w h ic h th e c o m p a r i­ so n d o es n o th in g to e lu c id a te , th ere is a lso m u c h to be g a in e d b y s tu d y in g this scen e in fo r m a l te rm s, as a

122

c o m p o s itio n . Its d e sig n , th o u g h d ire c tio n a lly re­ v e rs e d , is s u b sta n tia lly th e sam e as th at o f its p re ­ d e c e s s o r; y e t th e t w o d ie -c u tte rs d iffe r g r e a t ly in sty le . T h e scen e o n th e N e r v a sestertius has a r e la x e d , a lm o s t sla p d a sh q u a lit y a b o u t it ; w h e re a s th at o n the T r a ja n c o in is m u c h m o r e static, w it h a s tro n g e r sense o f b a la n c e a n d c o n tro l in th e p o s itio n in g an d m o v e m e n t o f th e fig u re s. E v e n a c o m p a riso n o f th e w a y th e p la t fo r m s are p o r t r a y e d w il l suffice to p in ­ p o in t th e d istin c tio n . O n N e r v a ’ s c o in it is n o t in fa c t cle a r w h e th e r w e are m e a n t to see o n e dais o r t w o ; w o r s e still, its in d e n te d u p p e r lin e is d r a w n p a ra lle l to th at o f th e e x e r g u e at th e b o tto m . T h e resu lt is h ig h ly u n re a listic. O n T r a ja n ’ s c o in th ere can b e n o d o u b t th a t w h a t w e h a v e are two p la t fo rm s, set clo se t o g e t h e r ; a n d th e E m p e r o r is s h o w n esco n c e d in s o lita r y d ig n it y (a fa m ilia r m o t i f fr o m th e c o in ­ d e sig n e rs ’ sto c k re p e rto ire ), w a t c h in g th e p ro c e e d ­ in g s, b u t p la y in g n o p a rt in th em . N o t e , to o , th e m a rk e d d iffe re n c e in th e re n d e rin g s o f th e m a n c lim b in g th e la d d e r. T h e sty le o f th e T r a j an c o in is, as I h a v e said , h ig h ly static, th e w o r k o f a d ie -c u tte r tra in e d in th e a c a d e m ic tra d itio n , a n d w it h a s tro n g sense o f c o m p o s itio n . It co n tra sts s h a rp ly w it h th e ro b u s t c h a ra c te r re v e a le d b y th e d e sig n e r o f th e N e r v a sestertius. T h e latter has re p r o d u c e d th e congiarius w it h a m o st rea listic s p o n ta n e ity , e m p h a siz in g th e s e lf-e v id e n tly ‘ p o p u la r ’ in te rp re ta tio n o f h is c h a racters th ro u g h v io le n t g e stu re s th at in v e s t th e w h o le scen e w it h th e m o st e x t r a o r d in a r y v it a lit y .

46

T R A JA N ( a d 98-117)

O bv. I M P T R A I A N O A V G G E R D A C P M T R P. H ead o f Trajan, w ith lau rel-w reath , facin g r. R ev. C O S V P P S P Q R O P T I M O P R I N C . T h e D an ube, personified, reclining on the g roun d, w ith one arm resting on the river-ban k and the other h old in g the p ro w o f a ship. His head is fram ed in his ch lam ys, w h ich has been b lo w n out round h im b y the w in d . In the ex e rg u e the w o rd D A N V V I V S. N ap les, M us. N az. Fiorelli 7425. D enarius.

Cohen 1 3 6 ; R I C Bernhart, p. 1 14 .

II, p. 2 5 1 , no. 100, pi. V II I , 14 2 ;

T h e re p re s e n ta tio n o f th e D a n u b e o n R o m a n c o in ­ a g e b e g in s w it h T r a ja n , a n d has a s p e c ific h isto ric a l c o n n o ta tio n . S in c e it a p p e a re d o n an issu e w h ic h laste d fr o m a d 10 3 to h i , it m u s t c o m m e m o r a te s o m e a c h ie v e m e n t a sso cia ted w it h th e D a c ia n c a m ­ p a ig n s. T h is ca n o n ly b e th e c o n s tru c tio n o f th e g re a t sto n e b r id g e , s o m e fiv e - e ig h th s o f a m ile lo n g , w h ic h w a s b u ilt a cro ss th e D a n u b e , b e t w e e n D r o b e t a e a n d P o n te s , b y A p o llo d o r u s o f D a m a s c u s in a d 1 0 5 . F r o m th e sty lis tic v ie w p o in t th is sp e c im e n is m o r e in te re s tin g th a n th e p r e v io u s o n e w e e x a m in e d . T o b e g in w it h , th e im p o r ta n c e o f th e r iv e r is n o t s y m ­ b o liz e d in th e u su a l w a y , b y s h o w in g w a t e r flo w in g fr o m a n u p tu rn e d h y d r ia (cf. P la te 4 7). A s fa r as o n e can see, th e g o d a p p e a rs to b e re c lin in g o n a p ile o f sto n es, w h ic h su g g e s t th e r iv e r ’ s r o u g h g r a v e l b o t­ to m . F u rth e r c h a ra c te riz a tio n is a c h ie v e d b y in se rt­ in g th e p r o w o f a sh ip , set in th e b a c k g r o u n d b u t s t r o n g ly e m p h a siz e d , w it h th e D a n u b e - d e it y re stin g h is r ig h t h a n d o n it in a p r o te c t iv e g estu re. T h e g o d is a s o m e w h a t s to c k y fig u r e , w it h his le g s, as u su a l, s w a th e d in a m a n tle . O n e in te re stin g fe a tu re a b o u t h im , h o w e v e r , is th e tre a tm e n t g iv e n to his c h la m y s , w h ic h th e a rtist has d e p ic te d as b lo w n b a c k a b o v e h is h ea d b y th e w in d , a ris in g a rc b e t w e e n

124

o n e u p p e r a rm a n d th e o th e r. In sh arp co n tra st w it h th e h e a v y , lu m p is h b o d y , this flu tte rin g fa b ric is c o n v e y e d im p re ss io n is tic a lly ; a fe w c u r v in g , b ro k e n lin es su ffice to re n d e r it in su b stan tia l a n d at th e sam e tim e to su g g e s t its n a tu ra l te n sio n . T h o u g h th e p ie ce m u st b e re g a rd e d as th e w o r k o f a r u n -o f-t h e -m ill c u tte r, it n e v e rth e le ss m a n a g e s to a c h ie v e an in ­ d iv id u a l c h a ra c te r a n d to n e , w h ic h at o n c e m a k e s it stan d o u t a m o n g th e tire d o ld s to c k m o tifs.

47 T R A J A N ( a d 98-117) O bv. I M P C A E S N E R V A E T R A I A N O A V G G E R D A C P M T R P C O S V P P. H ead o f T rajan , w ith radiate c ro w n , facing r. R ev. S P Q R O P T I M O P R I N C I P I . R iv e r-g o d reclining on the gro u n d under an arch, facin g 1., w ith a reed in one hand and the oth er h old in g an upturned h yd ria (w ater-jar) fro m w h ich w ater is flo w in g . In the ex e rg u e the w o rd s A Q V A T R A I A N A S C . N aples, M us. N az. Fiorelli 7505. D upondius.

Cohen 2 2 - 2 3 ; R I C II, p. 278, no. 464, pi. X I , 190 (different d ie); Strack I, pp. 1 9 2 - 4 ; Bernhart, p. 140. T h e d e sig n s h o w n h e re a llu d e s, as th e in sc rip tio n in th e e x e r g u e , A q u a T raia n a, m a k e s q u ite c le ar, to o n e o f th e v a r io u s m ea su res w h ic h T r a ja n to o k to im ­ p r o v e R o m e ’ s w a t e r - s u p p ly . T h e sam e m o tif, w it h m in o r v a ria tio n s , re c u rs o n g o ld , silv e r a n d b ro n z e co in s o f v a rio u s issues s tru c k b e t w e e n a d 10 4 a n d n o , c o n fir m in g th e im p o r ta n c e o f th e a c h ie v e m e n t w h ic h th e y c o m m e m o r a te . N e v e rth e le s s , sch o la rs d iffe r o v e r its p re c ise id e n tific a tio n . M a t t in g ly b e lie v e s th a t this re v e rse t y p e re fe rs to th e w o r k d o n e o n th e A n io N o v u s a q u e d u c t, w h ic h a im e d at p r o ­ v id in g R o m e w it h fre sh e r a n d c le a n e r w a t e r. S tra c k , o n th e o th e r h a n d , in v o k in g th e e v id e n c e o f an in sc rip tio n , c la im s th at th e issues in q u e stio n c o m ­ m e m o r a te th e o th e r n e w a q u e d u c t w h ic h c a rrie d w a t e r fr o m th e a rea o f th e Lacus Sabatinus to R o m e . T h e scen e is lia b le to v a r y s lig h tly fr o m o n e issue to a n o th e r. In this s p e c im e n th e fig u r e o f th e g o d rec lin e s u n d e r a p la in a rch , w h ic h w o u l d a p p e a r to re p re se n t th e e n tra n c e o f a g r o tt o . E ls e w h e r e w e fin d th e sam e a rc h , b u t e x e c u t e d w it h m o r e d e c o ra t iv e d e ta il. In y e t a n o th e r g r o u p th e a rc h is s u p p o rte d o n t w o c o lu m n s , thus id e n t ify in g it s e lf u n e q u iv o c a lly as p a rt o f an a q u e d u c t.

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In so fa r as th e c o m p o s itio n o f this s p e c im e n re v e a ls n o n e w a n d o rig in a l fe atu res, it still re m a in s, a rtisti­ c a lly s p e a k in g , o n th e e d g e o f th e ‘ g o o d ’ tra d itio n , a n d c a r e fu lly a v o id s th at fla t te n e d -re lie f te c h n iq u e w h ic h ch a ra cte riz e s c e rta in dies d u r in g T r a ja n ’ s re ig n . In s o m e cases, to o , th e d e sig n a n d a d o rn m e n t o f th e a rch b e h in d th e g o d h a v e b ee n c a rrie d o u t w it h a c e rta in e le g a n c e .

48

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O bv. I M P C A E S N E R V A E T R A I A N O A V G G E R D A C P M T R P C O S V P P. H ead o f T rajan, w ith lau rel-w reath , facing r. R e v . S P Q R O P T I M O P R I N C I P I , in the exerg u e the letters S C . T h e E m p ero r stands on a platform to the r. o f the field, w ith the Praetorian Prefect beside him , and harangues the people, facing 1. T h e people are sym bolized b y fo u r toga-clad figures stretching out their hands tow ards him . B eh in d them is the C ircu s meta (group o f three conical posts w h ich m arked the tu rn ingpoint in chariot-races), and reclining against its plinth a h alf-naked y o u th w h o p ro b ab ly personifies the Genius Loci. N ap les, M us. N az. Fiorelli 7625. Sestertius.

R 1 C II, p. 283, no. 553 ; Strack I, pp. 132-3A

T h is sp e c im e n is d a te d b y M a t t in g ly s o m e w h e r e b e t w e e n 10 6 a n d n o , a n d b y S tra c k (w ith g re a te r p re c isio n ) e ith e r to 10 4 o r to 1 0 7 . B u t th ere ca n b e n o d o u b t w h a t is c o m m e m o r a te s : th e m a g n ific e n t G a m e s , la s tin g fo r 1 2 3 d a y s, w it h w h ic h T r a ja n c e le b ra te d h is se co n d triu m p h , b e t w e e n th e first an d seco n d D a c ia n c a m p a ig n s . T h e a c tu a l m o m e n t p o r t r a y e d is th e p u b lic a c c la m a t io n o f T r a ja n a fte r h is a d d ress to th e p e o p le in th e C ir c u s M a x im u s . T h e d e sig n d o es n o t rise a b o v e th at g e n e r a lly su b d u e d to n e w h ic h c h a ra c te r­ izes all T r a ja n ’ s c o in a g e . I f w e c o n sid e r th e m o tifs in d iv id u a lly , it is c le a r th at th e y d e r iv e fr o m w e llk n o w n fo r m u la e , a lre a d y m u c h in use fo r genre scen es. T h e g r o u p c o n sistin g o f T r a ja n a n d h is P r e ­ fe c t b e a rs a clo se re s e m b la n c e , as re g a rd s b o th p o si­ tio n in g a n d stance, to th e a n a lo g o u s g r o u p o f N e r o ’ s co in s (P la te 2 2 ) ; w h ile th e fo u r little fig u re s w it h

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ra ise d h an d s re c a ll a sim ila r d e v ic e o n D o m it ia n ’ s issues c o m m e m o r a t in g th e L u d i Sa ec u lare s. (T h is m o t i f is v e r y m u c h in th e ‘p o p u la r ’ tra d itio n .) Y e t d e sp ite all th is, n o t to m e n t io n h is m e d io c re r e l ie f te c h n iq u e , th e artist d e se rv es c re d it fo r a c h ie v ­ in g a v ig o r o u s a n d fo rc e fu l c o m p o s itio n . T h e g ro u p in th e r ig h t fo r e g r o u n d ( T ra ja n a n d h is c o m p a n io n ) d o m in a te s th e scen e a n d catch es th e e y e im m e d ia te ly . T h e r e is also a r h y t h m ic c ro ss-te n sio n b e t w e e n v e r ­ tic al a n d h o riz o n ta l m o tifs , w it h T r a ja n o n th e o n e sid e a n d th e tu rn in g -p o s t o n th e o th e r c o u n te r­ b a la n c e d b y th e re c lin in g fig u r e a n d th e E m p e r o r ’ s o w n o u tstre tc h e d a rm ; th ese fe atu res in tu rn d r a w o n e ’ s e y e to th e c h e e rin g p o p u la c e - an essen tial an d in d isp e n sa b le a d ju n c t to th e Im p e ria l g ro u p .

49

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a d

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O bv. I M P C A E S N E R V A E T R A I A N O A V G G E R D A C P M T R P C O S V P P. H ead o f T rajan, w ith lau rel-w reath , facing r. R e v . S P Q R O P T I M O P R I N C I P I . A rabia, per­ sonified, standing w ith head turned to the 1., h oldin g a bunch o f flo w ers in her r. hand and a bundle o f canes in her 1. B eh in d her, in the backgrou n d , a cam el. In the ex e rg u e the inscription A R A B [ i a ] A D Q V I S [ it a ] . O n either side o f her the letters S C . N ap les, M us. N az. Fioretti 7429. Sestertius.

Cohen 3 2 - 3 3 ; R I C II, p. 278, no. 4 6 5; Bernhart, p. 1 0 5 ; Strack I, pp. 19 4 -7 .

A r a b ia , w h ic h h ad lo n g b e e n a R o m a n p ro te c t o ra te u n d e r th e N a b a ta e a n k in g s , b e c a m e a p r o v in c e o f th e E m p ir e in a d 1 0 5 , a n d th e co in s c o m m e m o r a t in g its a n n e x a tio n a re to b e d a te d b e t w e e n th en a n d h i . T h e s u b ju g a t io n o f th e N a b a ta e a n s w a s a d ip lo m a t ic ra th e r th a n a m ilit a r y a c h ie v e m e n t, a n d its c h ie f m o t iv e m u st b e so u g h t in th e c o u n t r y ’ s a d v a n ta g e o u s p o s itio n o n th e g re a t tra d e -ro u te s. A r a b ia ’ s c o m m e r c ia l life d e p e n d e d o n t w o k e y r e g io n s : th e P e tra V a lle y , so u th o f th e D e a d S e a , a n d th e co a stal strip , w h e r e c a ra v a n -ro u t e s fr o m m a n y areas c o n v e r g e d , c o m in g fr o m th e A r a b ia n h in te rla n d , th e E u p h ra te s , a n d th e p o rts o f S y r ia a n d P a le stin e , a ll m a k in g fo r th e R e d Se a. It is ju s t this g e o g r a p h ic a l p o s itio n a n d fu n c tio n w h ic h th e d ie c u tte r has a tte m p te d to r e c o rd b y in se rtin g a d r o m e d a r y b esid e th e p e rso n ifie d fig u r e o f th e p r o v in c e ; p e rh a p s h e m a d e it so sm all in o rd e r to su g g e s t re m o t e vistas, fa r h o riz o n s. T h e c o m p o s itio n o f this scen e, w it h th e m a in f ig u r e so n e a tly fr a m e d b y th e in sc rip tio n , strik e s a c a lm

130

a n d d ig n ifie d m o o d . O n e c h a ra cte ristic fe a tu re , w h ic h w e w il l fin d in o th e r dies cu t d u rin g T r a ja n ’ s re ig n , is a c e rta in fla tte n in g o f re lie f, so th at th e fig u r e v a n ish e s b e n e a th th at ric h cascade o f flo w in g ro b es. T h o u g h th e h e a d is s o m e w h a t sm all, s tric tly sp ea k ­ in g , fo r its b o d y , it n e v e rth e le ss su g g ests y o u th fu l e le g a n c e . T h e p e rso n ifie d fig u r e o f A r a b ia ap p ea rs fo r th e first tim e o n T r a ja n ’ s co in s, a n d rec u rs m o r e th a t o n c e (th o u g h in a d iffe re n t v e rsio n ) o n th o se o f his su cc esso r H a d ria n .

50

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Obu. I M P C A E S N E R T R A I A N O O P T I M O A V G G E R D A C P M T R P C O S V I P P. B ust o f T rajan, facing r., w ith lau rel-w reath and Im perial cloak (paladumentum). R e v . I M P E R A T O R V I I I I , w ith the letters S C in the exergu e. T h e E m p ero r, in m ilitary u n ifo rm , sits on a high dais, facing r., w ith tw o other persons in attendance. T h e y are all turned tow ards a g ro u p o f soldiers, both in fan try and c a va lry , w h o acclaim them w ith raised standards. N ap les, M us. N az. Fiorelli 7743. Sestertius.

R I C II, p. 2 9 1, no. 6 5S ; Strack I, pp. 1 3 2 - 3 , pi. V III, 463.

T h e Im p e r ia l acclamatio c o m m e m o r a te d b y this sestertiu s w a s th e n in th w h ic h T r a ja n r e c e iv e d , a n d to o k p la c e a fte r a su cc essfu l o p e ra tio n d u r in g th e P a rth ia n c a m p a ig n . A fo r c e u n d e r th e c o m m a n d o f M a r c u s L u c iu s Q u ie tu s re d u c e d S in g a ra , in M e s o ­ p o ta m ia , a n d th e R o m a n a r m y s c o re d a n o th e r v ic t o r y . T h e scen e o f m ilit a r y life h e re re p ro d u c e d is o n e o f th e sto c k th e m e s r e g u la r ly tre a te d in R o m a n h is­ to ric a l re lie fs, e s p e c ia lly d u r in g this p e rio d . It w a s at th is tim e th a t th e a ctiv itie s o f T r a ja n a n d h is a r m y d u r in g th e t w o D a c ia n W a rs w e r e p u t o n p e rm a n e n t r e c o r d , w it h th e e x e c u t io n o f th at a m a z in g sc u lp ­ tu re d frie z e , a n e a r-m ira c le o f c o n tin u ity , o n T r a ja n ’ s C o l u m n in R o m e . H o w e v e r , it w o u l d s ee m th a t th e p re se n t s p e c im e n d r e w its in sp ira tio n n o t so m u c h fr o m th e c o lu m n frie z e as fr o m e a rlie r s to c k scenes in th e d ie -c u tte rs ’ re p e rto ire . I f w e c o m p a r e this e x a m p le w it h an e a rlie r sp e c im e n (P late 26) w h ic h a lso s h o w s an

132

E m p e r o r , G a lb a , a d d ressin g h is tro o p s , th e p o in ts o f im m e d ia te a ffin ity b e t w e e n th e m can s c a rc e ly b e m isse d . T h e g e n e ra l a rra n g e m e n t o f th e scen e is id e n tic a l, e s p e c ia lly as re g a rd s th e t w o c o u n te r­ b a la n c in g g ro u p s . B o t h v e rs io n s e m p lo y th e sam e m o t i f in th e s o ld ie r w h o is u sed to d e lim it th e rig h t h a n d side o f th e c o m p o s itio n . A b o v e a ll, th ere is th e sense o f e x c it e m e n t w h ic h seem s to p e rv a d e an d e n liv e n th e p ro c e e d in g s re g a rd le ss o f p e rio d . T h e a rtist re sp o n sib le fo r G a lb a ’ s issue has g iv e n his in te rp re ta tio n a g re a te r sense o f sp atial d e p th b y s la n tin g th e sta n d a rd s a n d th e lo n g spears. O n th e o th e r h a n d , th e d ie -c u tte r w h o m a d e T r a ja n ’ s sestertiu s has g iv e n e x t ra d ra m a tic fo rc e to th e scen e b y a h e ig h te n e d s u g g e s tio n o f m o v e m e n t a m o n g th e g r o u p o f so ld ie rs. T h e d is tin c tiv e r e lie f- w o r k in this la tte r v e rs io n h as le d S t ra c k to su p p o se th at th e sester­ tius in q u e stio n w a s n o t a p r o d u c t o f th e R o m e m in t ; b u t th ere is n o o th e r e v id e n c e to su p p o rt his th e o ry .

51

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O bv. I M P C A E S N E R T R A I A N O O P T I M O A V G G E R D A C P A R T H IC O P M T R P C O S V I P P. B u st o f T rajan, w earin g lau rel-w reath and Im perial cloak, facing r. R ev. A R M E N IA E T M E S O P O T A M IA IN P O T E S T A T E M P R R E D A C T A E . T h e E m p ero r stands facing r., leaning on a spear and carryin g a sheathed sw ord . In front o f him , to 1. and r., the h alf-reclinin g personified figures o f the T ig ris and the Euph rates; b etw een them a w eep in g M esopotam ia, w h o m the E m p ero r spurns w ith one foot. N ap les, M us. N az. Fioretti 7 7 7 1. Sestertius.

Cohen 3 9 ; R I C II, p. 289, no. 642, pi. X I , 1 9 1 ; Bernhart, p. 1 0 5 ; Strack, pp. 223 ff.

T h is sp e c im e n dates fr o m a d n 6 o r 1 1 7 . T h e c o m ­ p le x scen e it p o r tr a y s c o m m e m o ra te s th e c o n q u e st o f A r m e n ia , to g e th e r w it h h e r n e ig h b o u r M e s o p o ­ ta m ia , a n d th e ir r e c o n stitu tio n as a jo in t p r o v in c e . In potestatem p o p u li R o m a n i redactae ru n s th e in sc rip ­ tio n : ‘ B r o u g h t w it h in th e ju r is d ic t io n o f th e R o m a n p e o p le ’ . T h u s th e scene fa lls in to a c a t e g o r y w h ic h o fte n a p p e a rs o n R o m a n co in s d u r in g th e E m p ir e , an d w a s n o t u n k n o w n b e fo r e th e fa ll o f th e R e p u b lic : th e p e rso n ific a tio n o f p ro v in c e s , in a ttitu d e s w h ic h v a r ie d a c c o r d in g to th e e v e n t th e y s y m b o liz e d . S u b ­ ju g a t io n , o r th e E m p e r o r ’ s tra v e ls, an d th e b e n e fits th e y b r o u g h t, su ch w e r e th e th em e s th at d ic ta te d th e p a rtic u la r fo r m to b e ta k e n b y each d e sig n . T h e d ie -c u tte r has e m p lo y e d th at fla t te n e d -r e lie f te c h n iq u e w h ic h ch a ra cte riz e s o th e r r e v e rse ty p e s d u rin g th is p e rio d (P lates 49, 5 0 ); a e s th e tic a lly s p e a k in g , h is o v e r a ll c o n c e p t is m o st a m b itio u s, th o u g h th e fin a l e x e c u t io n a c h ie v e s o n ly a p a rtia l success.

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O n e o rig in a l fe a tu re o f th is c o m p o s itio n is th e idea o f fr a m in g th e scen e o n e ith e r side w it h fa c e -to -fa c e fig u re s s y m b o liz in g th e t w o g re a t r iv e rs w h ic h d iv id e M e s o p o ta m ia , a n d w h ic h h a v e a lw a y s b e e n the so u rc e o f the c o u n t r y ’s w e a lth . T h o u g h the artist has g iv e n th ese t w o fig u re s th e a p p e a ra n c e tra d itio n ­ a lly re s e rv e d in R o m a n a rt fo r r iv e r - g o d s (cf. P la te 4 7 ), h is o b je c t in p o s in g th e m fa c e -to -fa c e w a s to c o n c e n tra te a tte n tio n o n th e E m p e r o r , d o m in a t in g h is n e w l y s u b ju g a te d p r o v in c e . T h is e m p h a sis o n p o w e r , d ir e c tly a ttrib u te d to th e p e rso n o f th e E m p e r o r , a n d c o n v e y e d b y p o r t r a y in g h im fu ll-fa c e a n d e re c t a m o n g h is g r o v e llin g v ic t im s , b o th fo re ­ s h a d o w s a n d p re p a re s th e w a y fo r c e rta in scenes p o p u la r in th e L a te E m p ir e . H e re th e fig u r e o f th e E m p e r o r assu m es r e a lly c o lo ssa l p ro p o rtio n s in c o m p a ris o n w it h th e o th e r c h a racters a m o n g s t w h o m he m oves.

52

T R A JA N (AD98-117)

O bv. M A T ID IA AVG D IV A F [5 /c ] M AR­ C I A N A E F. B ust o f M atidia, w ith diadem , facin g r. R ev. P I E T A S A V G V S T . T h e fig u re o f Pietas, standing facing 1., her hands resting on the heads o f M atid ia’ s tw o little daughters, Sabina and V ib ia M atidia, w h o stand on either side o f her. N ap les, M us. N az. Fiorelli 7824. D enarius.

Cohen 9 - 1 0 ; R I C II, p. 3 0 1, no. 7 5 9 ; Strack I, p. 4 1 ; II, pp. 39 and 68. T h e c o in w h ic h is r e p r o d u c e d o p p o s ite , c o n s id e ra b ly e n la rg e d , o ffe rs us (d esp ite th e scra tch es w h ic h dis­ fig u r e its lo w e r h alf) a strik in g p o rtra it o f M a tid ia , a m a t u r e ly b e a u tifu l w o m a n , o f g re a t c o m p o s u re a n d u n to u c h e d b y a ffe c ta tio n . M a t id ia w a s T r a ja n ’ s n ie c e , th e d a u g h t e r o f his sister M a rc ia n a a n d th e m o th e r o f S a b in a , H a d r ia n ’ s u n fo rt u n a t e w ife . T h e co in s o n w h ic h she is re p re ­ sen ted all b e lo n g to the last p e rio d o f h e r life. T h e ir h isto ric a l c o n te x t, ta k e n in c o n ju n c t io n w it h c o n ­ sid e ra tio n s o f sty le , s h o w s th a t th ese lik en esses stem fr o m o n e p a rtic u la r g r o u p o f p o rtra its , all o f w o m e n b e lo n g in g to T r a ja n ’ s fa m ily , a n d all - M a rc ia n a , M a t id ia a n d P lo t in a e s p e c ia lly - tie d to th e sam e in te rp re t a t iv e v is io n , so th a t so m e tim e s t h e y seem la c k in g in tru e in d iv id u a lit y . N e v e rth e le s s , I re g a r d th is p o r tr a it as o n e o f th e best ch a ra c te riz a tio n s o f M a t id ia in e x iste n c e ; n o t, c e rta in ly , as re g a rd s th e p o m p o u s , c o u r tly - H e lle n is t ic tre a tm e n t o f th e h a ir, so fa sh io n a b le d u r in g this p e rio d , b u t b e c a u se o f th e w a y h e r fe atu res h a v e b ee n m a d e so rea l a n d h u m a n b y a b le n d o f d e lic a c y a n d re stra in t in th e fin e ly d e ta ile d r e l ie f w o r k . T h e sh a p e o f th e n o se is n o t s tiffly c o n v e n t io n a l (as it w e ll m ig h t be in a ‘ h ig h ’ n e o -c la s sic iz in g p o rtra it) b u t ju t s , in a b o ld y e t e x q u is it e ly m o d e lle d lin e , fr o m th a t s tra n g e in v e r t e d V fo r m e d b y th e fro n ta l rid g e .

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T h e m o st strik in g fe atu res are the te x tu re o f th e c h e e k , so ft b u t n o t y e t fla b b y , a n d th e fa in t th ic k e n ­ in g v is ib le b en e ath th e ch in . B o t h te n d to em p h a siz e M a t id ia ’ s so ft, te n d er m o u th , a p a th e tic a lly h u m a n to u c h in this a u stere o v e ra ll c o n c e p t. T h e u p tu rn e d e y e , to o , its p u p il c le a r ly d isc e rn ib le , adds a fa in t to u c h o f ro m a n c e to th e im p e rso n a l q u a lity w h ic h o n e asso ciates w it h an o ffic ia l p o rtra it. T h e p e rso n ific a tio n o f P ietas o n th e re v e rse s y m ­ b o liz e s M a t id ia ’ s m a te rn a l v irtu e s , a n d th e co n sta n t lo v in g c a re she b e s to w e d o n h er t w o little g irls, V ib ia M a t id ia a n d Sa b in a .

53

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117-38)

O bv. I M P C A E S T R A I A N H A D R I A N O P T A V G G E R D A C . B u st o f H adrian, w ith laurelw reath , facing r. R ev. P A R T H I C D I V I T R A I A N A V G F P M T R P C O S P P. T rajan and H adrian standing face to face, w earin g togas, clasping hands; in the exergue the w o rd A D O P T I O . N ap les, M us. N az. Fioretti 7842. D enarius.

Cohen 4 ; R I C II, p. 339, no. 3 d ; Strack I, p. 230, no. 1 1 . T h e E m p e r o r H a d ria n - C a e s a r T ra ia n u s H a d ria n u s A u g u s tu s a fte r his acce ssio n - w a s b o r n at R o m e in a d 76 , h is fa th e r b e in g a co u sin o f T r a ja n ’ s. T h e la tte r a d o p te d h im in 1 1 7 , a n d H a d ria n a ssu m ed th e p u rp le th at sam e y e a r, a fte r T r a ja n ’ s d e ath at Se lin u s in C ilic ia . T h e sp e c im e n h e re re p ro d u c e d ca rries th e s ta n d a rd ‘ A d o p t io n ’ m o t i f o n its re v e rse . It u p h o ld s th e le g it im a c y o f H a d r ia n ’ s su cc essio n , w h ic h so m e p e o p le h a d v e n t u r e d to q u e s tio n , a n d ca n b e d a te d o n in te rn a l e v id e n c e to 1 1 7 . T h is lik en e ss o f th e E m p e r o r , lea n , w i r y , w it h w a v y h a ir an d th e c lo se cu t b e a rd w h ic h set a n e w fa sh io n in R o m a n s o c ie ty , g o e s b a c k to th e b e g in n in g o f his re ig n , a n d w a s p r o b a b ly m o d e lle d o n th e ea rliest o ffic ia l p o rtra it. T h e r e a re v a rio u s sc u lp tu re d lik en esses o f H a d ria n s u r v iv in g . T o this e a r ly p e r io d ( 1 1 7 - 1 8 , th e y e a rs o f h is first t w o co n su lsh ip s) is a ttrib u te d o n e o ffic ial re p re s e n ta tio n w h ic h , ju s t lik e th e p o rtra it re p r o ­ d u c e d h e re , s h o w s h is r ig h t sh o u ld e r b are , a n d the c h la m y s t h r o w n b a c k o v e r h is left. It is b y n o m ean s im p o s sib le th at th e p o r tr a it w e are s tu d y in g , w h ic h e x a c t ly rep ea ts th is fa r fr o m c o m m o n fe a tu re , w a s base d o n su ch a m o d e l. S c h o la rs a re a g re e d th a t th e p r o t o t y p e c o u ld w e ll b e H a d r ia n ’ s first o ffic ia l p o rtra it, e x e c u t e d at th e tim e o f his a ccessio n . T h e lik en e ss w e h a v e h e re , w it h its p r o u d ly p o ise d h e a d , th e e y e a le rt a n d v ig ila n t b e n e a th th at s t r o n g ly m a r k e d b r o w r id g e , u n d o u b t e d ly catch es

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H a d ria n at his best. It is, h o w e v e r , e q u a lly cle ar th at th e artist, th o u g h in c lin e d to in te rp re t his th e m e in a te n d e n tio u sly ‘ h ig h ’ s ty le , has n o t g o n e so fa r as to fa ls ify th e fe atu res o f an E m p e r o r w h o m p o s te rity re m e m b e rs (a m o n g o th e r reasons) fo r his c u ltiv a te d taste in th e arts.

54

H A D R IA N

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d

117-38)

O bv. H A D R I A N V S A V G C O S I I I P P. B ust o f H adrian, facing r., w ith Im perial cloak and breastplate. R ev. I V D A E A . T h e E m p ero r stands, facin g r., stretch­ in g out his hand to a personified Ju d aea, w h o is kneeling, flanked b y three children bearing palm -branches. O n either side o f this g ro u p the letters S C . N ap les, M us. N az. Fiorelli 8405. Sestertius.

Cohen 8 72 ; R I C II, p. 448, no. 853. C f. also R I N (1906), p. 1 4 1 , no. 7, pi. II, 6, and Strack II, pp. 16 2 - 3 , pi- X I V , 7X9T h is scen e, w it h H a d ria n ra isin g u p th e k n e e lin g fig u r e o f Ju d a e a , a llu d e s to th e E m p e r o r ’ s p o litic a l demarche o n th e o c c a s io n o f th e se co n d J e w is h R e v o lt , w h ic h b r o k e o u t in 1 3 2 , a fte r le n g t h y p re p a ra tio n s, a n d d r a g g e d o n fo r th re e an d a h a l f y e a rs. It w a s fin a lly p u t d o w n in 1 3 5, le a v in g th e c o u n t r y b le d w h it e a n d s e rio u s ly c rip p le d . H a d ria n to o k steps to g e t J u d a e a o n its fe e t a g a in , th e m o st im p o r ta n t b e in g th e re ­ b u ild in g o f J e r u s a le m (o r A e lia C a p ito lin a ), a n d the c it y ’ s te m p le o f J u p it e r C a p ito lin u s , w h ic h h ad a lre a d y re p la c e d th e J e w is h T e m p le , sacred to J e h o v a h . W h e n th e c it y a ro se o n c e m o r e , it w a s fille d w it h G r e e k co lo n ists. T h e c h ild re n s h o w n o n this c o in are a p p a re n tly an a llu sio n to life ta k in g ro o t an d flo u ris h in g o n c e m o r e w h e r e la t e ly th e re h a d b e e n n o th in g b u t a d e v a s ta te d w ild e rn e ss. A c c o r d in g to S t ra c k , th e p re se n t sp e c im e n issu ed b y th e R o m e m in t b e t w e e n 1 3 4 a n d 1 3 8 - m u st, o n this in te rp re t a t io n , p o s t-d a te th e en d o f th e w a r . It is tru e , as h e o b se rv e s , th a t Ju d a e a is tre a te d n o t as a n a tio n (in w h ic h case th e fig u r e w o u ld h a v e b ee n Ju d a e a devicta) b u t ra th e r as a m e re re g io n a l t e r r ito r y , to b e p e rso n ifie d as Ju d a e a renascens. S u c h an in te r­

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p re ta tio n w o u ld c e rta in ly g i v e th e scen e fu ll im p a c t as p ro p a g a n d a . H a d ria n tfien b e c o m e s th e re sto re r a n d re b u ild e r so p la in ly h in te d at in th e p ic tu re itse lf, th r o u g h th at Im p e ria l g e stu re o f ra isin g th e c o u n t r y to its feet. F r o m th e p o in t o f v ie w o f d e sig n a n d c o m p o s itio n th e re are in te re s tin g fe atu res h ere . N o a tte m p t has b e e n m a d e o n th is c o in to b a la n c e th e v a rio u s m asses, to a rra n g e th e m in s y m m e tr ic a l g ro u p s a g ain st th eir c irc u la r b a c k g r o u n d . O n th e c o n tr a r y , o n e side o f th e c irc le h as b ee n le ft q u ite e m p t y , a n d th e E m p e r o r stands th e re , a lo n e , o n th e le ft, d w a r fin g th e o th e r fig u re s, e s p e c ia lly th at o f Ju d a e a , th o u g h i f she w e r e s ta n d in g u p s tra ig h t she w o u ld b e as tall as h e is. T h is p ro p o r tio n a te re la tio n sh ip b e t w e e n th e fig u re s is in te re s tin g w h e n w e c o m p a re it w it h th e w a y th e p r o b le m te n d e d to b e s o lv e d at a la te r p e rio d (cf. P la te 9 5). T h e o b je c t o f th e d ie -c u tte r w a s to e m p h a siz e an d a cce n tu a te th e E m p e r o r ’ s p o w e r , as m a n ife s te d in h is g e stu re to w a r d s a v a n q u is h e d fo e . T h is h e m a n a g e d b y m a k in g th e la tte r as tall as H a d ria n , b u t c a r e fu lly p u t tin g h e r o n h e r kn ees. L a t e r th e sam e effe c t w a s o b ta in e d b y g iv in g th e t w o fig u re s q u ite d iffe re n t p ro p o rtio n s .

55

A N T O N IN U S PIUS

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a d

138-61)

O bv. I M P T A E L C A E S A N T O N I N V S . B are head o f A ntoninus, facing r. R ev. T R I B P O T C O S . Pietas, veiled, facing L, stands and makes sacrifice before a lit altar. O n either side o f her the divided w o rd P I E - T A S . N aples, M us. N az . Fiorelli 8588. Aureus.

Cohen 5 9 7 -8 ; R I C II, p. 395, no. 4 5 4 a ; Strack II, pp. 1 6 7 f r ; III, pp. 4 ff., 5 0 ff. O n 2 4 F e b r u a r y , 1 3 8 , th e E m p e r o r H a d ria n , n o w s e rio u s ly ill, a d o p te d th e q u in q u a g e n a ria n T . A u r e ­ lius A n to n in u s , w h o t o o k the n a m e o f T . A e liu s C a e s a r A n to n in u s ; th e e p ith e t ‘ P iu s ’ w a s a d d e d later. A n to n in u s w a s b o r n at L a n u v iu m in a d 8 6 ; his fa m ily w a s o r ig in a lly fr o m N e m a u s u s in G a u l. A t th e tim e o f h is a cce ssio n h e w a s a w e a lt h y la n d e d p r o p r ie t o r in h is o w n r ig h t ; h is p o litic a l c a re e r h ad b r o u g h t h im a c o n su lsh ip , a n d s u b se q u e n tly h e jo in e d H a d r ia n ’ s P r i v y C o u n c il. H is a d o p tio n to o k p la c e o n ly a fe w m o n th s b e fo r e th e E m p e r o r ’ s d e ath . A n to n in u s in fa c t a ssu m ed th e p u rp le in J u l y 1 3 8 , a n d w a s a b le to c e le b ra te h is decennalia in 14 8 , a n d ten y e a rs a fte r th at h is vicennalia. T h e sp e c im e n r e p r o ­ d u c e d h e re is o n e o f th e ea rliest issues fr o m h is re ig n , it can b e d a te d to 1 3 8. A lr e a d y , it s h o u ld b e n o te d , th e c o in a g e is p r o m o t in g th e q u a lity m o st c lo s e ly a sso cia ted w it h h is n a m e - p ie ty . S tu d e n ts o f sc u lp tu re h a v e iso la te d th re e b asic m o d e ls u n d e r ly in g all p o rtra its o f A n to n in u s . T h e first o f th ese s h o w s h im w e a r in g a b re a s t-p la te a n d w it h sp ea r in h a n d , a n d b e g in s to a p p e a r o n th e co in s fr o m 14 0 o n w a r d s . A s w e w o u l d e x p e c t , this c h a n g e o f m e d iu m see m s to h a v e e n ric h e d th e e n tire series to a n o ta b le d e g re e - th o u g h a p o w e r fu l n e o ­ classical id e a liz in g p ro ce ss is at w o r k th r o u g h o u t, s ta m p in g ea ch d ie w it h th e sam e im p e rso n a l a ir o f d ig n it y .

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T h o s e v irtu e s a n d q u a litie s w it h w h ic h tra d itio n in v e sts th e fig u r e o f A n to n in u s - to ju s t ify , inter alia, th e title o f ‘ P iu s ’ fo r m a lly v o t e d h im b y th e S e n a te can also b e iso la te d as fu n d a m e n ta l ele m e n ts in his p o rtra it. T h is , le a v in g aside m in o r v a ria tio n s b e tw e e n in d iv id u a l d ies, g iv e s an o v e r a ll im p re ss io n o f h a v in g b e e n c o n c e iv e d in th e ‘ h ig h ’ tr a d itio n ; m o re so, c e rta in ly , th an th e lik en esses o f m o st o th e r e m p e ro rs. S u c h a ch a ra c te ristic , o f co u rse , b y n o m ean s d e tra cts fr o m th e v a lu e o f A n to n in u s P iu s ’ s c o in a g e . L ik e th a t o f H a d ria n a n d h is o w n im m e d ia te succes­ sors, it all b u t eq u a ls th e l o f t y s tan d ard s in re fin e m e n t a n d sty le a c h ie v e d b y the s o -c a lle d m e d a llio n s. C e r ­ ta in ly w h e n w e set th is p o rtra it b esid e s o m e co in s s tru c k b y H a d ria n , w e ca n see th at it is o n e o f th e m o st n o b le a tte m p ts to p o r t r a y A n to n in u s th at has s u r v iv e d . T h e fe atu res are o f strik in g r e g u la r ity , an d th e tre a tm e n t o f th e h a ir re stra in e d a n d sim p le ; the fo c a l p o in t o f e x p re ss io n is th e e y e , w h ic h , w it h its c le a r ly e tch e d p u p il, lo o k s p a r tic u la r ly v iv id an d a lert.

56

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138-61)

O bv. I M P T A E L C A E S A N T O N I N V S . B are head o f A ntoninus, facing r. R e v . T R I B P O T C O S . Pietas, veiled, facing 1., stands and m akes sacrifice before a lit altar. O n either side o f her the divid ed w o rd P I E - T A S . N ap les, M us. N az. Fioretti 8588. Aureus.

Cohen 5 9 7 -8 ; R I C II, p. 395, 4 5 4 a ; cf. b ib lio g ra p h y to preced ing plate. T h e p o r t r a y a l o f P ie ta s, as h as a lre a d y b e e n p o in te d o u t (P la te 8), ca n b e tra c e d th r o u g h in a c le a r lin e, o n all re le v a n t co in s, fr o m th e R e p u b lic to th e E m p ir e . T h e th e m e s h o w s fe w v a r ia tio n s ; so m e , p e r­ h ap s, m a y h a v e g o n e u n r e c o g n iz e d b y b e in g lo st a m o n g fe m a le fig u re s w it h o u t a n y id e n t ify in g a ttrib u te s. (T h is is p a r tic u la r ly tru e in th e fie ld o f s c u lp tu re .) T h e sp e c im e n re p ro d u c e d h e re s h o w s th e g o d d e ss in a scen e w h ic h o c c u rs r e g u la r ly o n co in s fr o m T r a ja n ’ s r e ig n o n w a r d s . It is also d u r in g this p e rio d th a t she b e g in s to b e o fte n s h o w n a c c o m ­ p a n ie d b y c h ild re n , so m e tim e s a n o n y m o u s , s o m e ­ tim e s id e n tifia b le . A q u ite d iffe re n t p re se n ta tio n , w it h P ie ta s seated , a p p ea rs o n th e o b v e rs e o f a w e llk n o w n sestertiu s stru c k b y C a lig u la , w h ic h w e h a v e a lr e a d y s tu d ie d (P la te 8). A c o m p a ris o n b e t w e e n th e t w o sp e c im e n s is o f so m e in te rest, n o t s im p ly as re g a rd s d e sig n (b o th d e r iv e fr o m t w o c le a r ly dis­ tin g u is h a b le g ro u p s ), b u t fo r s ty le an d , in d e e d , r e la tiv e q u a lit y o f a c h ie v e m e n t. C a lig u la ’ s c o in o ffe rs us a fa ir ly a c c u ra te re p re se n ta tio n in th e cla ssiciz in g m a n n e r : th e a m p le p h y s ic a l c u rv e s re v e a le d b y th o se fin e a n d c lo s e ly c lin g in g d ra p e rie s b e t r a y an artist w h o is w o r k in g d ir e c t ly u n d e r th e in flu e n c e o f c o n t e m p o r a r y o r n e a r - c o n t e m p o r a r y scu lp tu re . O n th e o th e r h a n d th e e x a m p le s h o w n h e re g iv e s e v id e n c e o f h a s ty , slip sh o d w o r k - a q u a lit y w h ic h , in d e e d , ten d s to c h a ra c te riz e a ll c o in -re v e rs e s d u rin g

r44

this p e rio d , an d is all th e m o r e n o tic e a b le in co n tra st w it h th e p o rtra its o n th e o b v e rs e , w h e r e a liv in g tra d itio n h as b ee n m a in ta in e d . It w o u ld b e in te rest­ in g i f w e c o u ld fin d s u p p o rtin g e v id e n c e fo r th e h y p o th e sis th at this carelessn ess o f e x e c u t io n (as e v in c e d h e re a n d in th e tre a tm e n t o f o th e r sim ila r scenes) im p lie d a la c k o f in te rest in p e rso n ifie d fig u re s as su ch , re p e titio n in d u c in g b o r e d o m ; b u t o v e r such th in g s th ere can b e n o ce rta in ty . O b s e r v e , in this sp e c im e n , th e la c k o f fe e lin g fo r d e sig n r e v e a le d b y th e re la tio n sh ip o f scen e to in s c r ip tio n : e s p e c ia lly th e w o r d P I E T A S , w h ic h a c tu a lly im p e d e s th e g o d d e s s ’ s m o v e m e n ts as she takes g ra in s o f in cen se fr o m h e r b o x a n d scatters th e m o n th e a ltar.

57 A N T O N IN U S PIUS

( a d 138-61)

O bv. F A V S T I N A E A V G P I I A V G F I L . D raped bust o f Faustina, facing r., w ith hairband. R ev. V E N V S . V enus standing, head turned to the I., w ith an apple in one hand and the other h old in g a ship’ s rudder resting on a dolphin. N aples, M us. N az. Fiorelli 9300. Aureus.

R I C III, p. 95, no. 5 1 7 ; Strack III, pp. 1 0 8 ff. A n n ia G a le r ia F au stin a A u g u s ta , k n o w n m o re b r ie fly as F a u stin a II o r th e Y o u n g e r F au stin a , w a s th e d a u g h t e r o f A n to n in u s P iu s b y th e E ld e r F au stin a . W h ile still a ch ild , in 1 3 8 , she w a s b e ­ tro th e d to L u c iu s V e r u s ; in 1 4 5 , still b a r e ly fifte e n , she m a rrie d M a rc u s A u r e liu s , an d in 1 4 7 b o r e h im h is first m a le c h ild . F r o m this y e a r fo r w a r d she w a s s ty le d ‘ A u g u s t a ’ , as w e k n o w fr o m h e r co in -issu es, w h ic h c o n tin u e d to b e stru c k t h r o u g h o u t A n to n in u s P iu s ’ s r e ig n , u p to 1 6 1 . T h e p o r tr a it r e p ro d u c e d h e re is m a r k e d b y e x ­ tre m e s im p lic ity , e v e n in its e x t e rn a l ch a ra cte ristic s : w itn e ss th e n a tu ra l, sim p le h a irs ty le , a r e m a rk a b le co n tra st w it h th e u ltra -e la b o ra t e co iffu re s a ffe c te d b y e v e n th e p r im m e s t w o m e n d u r in g T r a ja n ’ s r e ig n (cf. P la te 52). O n th e o th e r h a n d this d e ta il d o es n o t im p l y th a t F a u stin a n e g le c te d h e r a p p e a ra n c e , e ith e r th r o u g h m o d e s ty o r slo v e n lin e ss. D u r in g h e r o ffic ia l c a re e r she w e n t th r o u g h n o less th a n se v e n c o m p le te c h a n g e s o f h a irs ty le - w h ic h in fa ct e n a b le us to d a te a n d c la ss ify h e r p o rtra its . T h e lik en e ss r e p ro d u c e d h e re is n o t o u tsta n d in g , e ith e r o n s ty listic g ro u n d s o r fo r h e r fa c ia l fe atu res, th o u g h it w o u ld see m to lo o k b a c k to th e o ld cla ssic iz in g tre n d in p o rtra itu re th at ch a ra c te riz e s th e p e r io d o f A n to n in u s P iu s. T h e d ie -c u t te r h as, as it w e r e , b u ilt this p o r tr a it u p , b y m e a n s o f a r e m a rk a b le h ig h - r e lie f te c h n iq u e . B u t a p a rt fr o m th is, th e effe c t h e p ro d u c e s is to o u n i-

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f o r m l y so ft a n d s m o o t h ; th ere is little to in d ic a te th e lig h t e r te x tu re o f th e m a te ria l w h ic h c o v e rs th e sitte r’ s b o s o m an d is b u n c h e d to g e th e r b e h in d h er sh o u ld e rs. B y c o m p a ris o n w it h th e effects w h ic h p o rtra it-a rtis ts u n d e r A n to n in u s P iu s, M a rc u s A u r e ­ liu s, L u c iu s V e ru s an d C o m m o d u s m a n a g e d to e x t ra c t fr o m th e s im p le co n tra st b e t w e e n fa ce a n d h a ir, th e p re se n t lik en e ss m u st b e re g a rd e d as u n ­ in sp ire d , ro u t in e w o r k . O n l y th e e y e , a lert i f m o tio n le s s, in fu ses a to u c h o f life in to it.

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A N T O N IN U S PIUS ( a d 138-61)

O bv. F A V S T I N A A V G V S T A . D rap ed bust o f the Y o u n g e r Faustina, facing 1., w ith her hair done up in a bun abo ve the nape o f the neck. R ev. D iana, h olding a torch, seated on a stag, facin g 1. N ap les, M us. N az. Fiorelli 16 0 0 1. B ro n z e m edallion.

Gnecchi II, p. 40, pi. 68, no. 4. T h ere is another specim en in Paris. T h is s p e c im e n , o f w h ic h th e re v e rse is r e p ro d u c e d e n la rg e d h e re , c o m e s fr o m an e x t ra o r d in a r ily ric h seq u e n ce o f m e d a llio n s s tru c k d u r in g th e A n to n in e era , sta rtin g w it h A n to n in u s P iu s a n d e n d in g w it h C o m m o d u s ; o th e r e x a m p le s can b e seen o n P la te s 59, 6 3 , a n d e ls e w h e re . T h e p re se n t p ie c e b e lo n g s to o n e p a rtic u la r g r o u p w h ic h A n to n in u s P iu s issu ed , in se v e ra l v a r ia n t v e rs io n s, b u t all fe a t u rin g D ia n a as a m a r k o f h is sp ec ial d e v o t io n to th is g o d d e ss. T h e o v e r a ll d e v e lo p m e n t o f th e g r o u p c o v e rs s o m e se v e n y e a rs, b e t w e e n 1 4 0 a n d 14 7 . F u r th e r m o r e , th e e x a m p le s h o w n h e re , w h ic h ca rries th e p o r tr a it o f F a u stin a (a lre a d y k n o w n as ‘ A u g u s t a ’ ) o n its o b ­ v e rs e , b e lo n g s to th e issue w h ic h h e r fa th e r a u th o r­ iz e d in h e r h o n o u r . It ca n th e re fo re b e d a te d to 14 7 , p a r t ly b y th e title o f A u g u s ta , b u t also b y th e h a ir­ sty le , w h ic h F a u stin a seem s to h a v e c h a n g e d a b o u t th is tim e (cf. th e a c c o m p a n y in g t e x t o n P la te 5 7 ). W e m a y also n o te th a t th e m o t i f o f D ia n a a n d h e r sta g is re p e a te d o n a n o th e r m e d a llio n , stru c k b y th e sam e E m p e r o r a n d n o w in th e B e r lin M u s e u m , a n d d a te d b y T o y n b e e b e t w e e n a d 14 0 an d 14 4 . Its d e sig n is

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ra th e r m o r e p le a sin g th an that o f th e p re se n t e x ­ a m p le . In stea d o f b e in g p e rc h e d o n th e a n im a l, th e g o d d e ss stands b esid e it, a slim a n d y o u th fu l fig u r e ; th e sta g has its h ea d tu rn e d t o w a rd s h e r, a n d she is g ra s p in g o n e o f its tines. D e sp ite th e ir closen ess o f th e m e a n d d ate, h o w e v e r , it d o es n o t l o o k as th o u g h th ese t w o p ie ces ca n b e tra ce d to th e sam e d ie -c u tte r. T h e e a rlie r o n e b rea th es an a tm o sp h e re o f re fin e d e le g a n c e ; this ca n b e o b ­ s e rv e d n o t o n ly in th e in te rn a l p r o p o rtio n s o f th e g r o u p , an d its re la tio n sh ip to th e d e fin in g c irc le o f th e c o in , b u t also in th e s trik in g p u r it y o f lin e a n d c o m p o s itio n w h ic h ch a ra c te riz e th e p o r tr a y a l o f th e g o d d e s s h e rse lf. T h e a rtist re sp o n sib le fo r th e sp eci­ m e n s h o w n h e re seem s to h a v e b e e n a g o o d deal m o r e h e a v y -h a n d e d , b o th as re g a rd s c o m p o s itio n an d in te c h n ic a l sk ill. T h e ce n tre o f the g r o u p is set to o h ig h in the c irc le , a n d th e g o d d e ss lo o k s v e r y p re c a rio u s ly b a la n c e d o n h e r stag. It is also c le ar (th o u g h this is a d iffe re n c e o f sty le ra th e r th an o f effect) th at th e cu tte r h as a tte m p te d to e x p e r im e n t w it h r e lie f te ch n iq u e s, as can b e seen fr o m th e te x tu re o f stag an d g o d d e ss a lik e ; this d o es n o t sto p h im e m p lo y in g v a rio u s p ic to ria l effects in th e a rra n g e m e n t o f th e tu n ic an d th e w in d - b lo w n m a n tle .

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a d

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O bv. A N T O N I N V S A V G P I V S P P T R P X V I . B are head o f A ntoninus facing r. R eu. C O S I I I I on the exergue. T h e E m p ero r, w earin g a toga, sits in a curule chair, facing 1., w ith his feet on a footstool, and accepts a co rn -sh eaf fro m C e res’s hands, w h ile V ic to ry , standing behind h im , places a cro w n on his head. N aples, M us. N az. Fiorelli 15994. B ro n z e m edallion.

Gnecchi II, no. 19 , pis 44,3 and 4 5 ,5 ; Strack III, no. 622, also pp. 59 and 150. T h is sp e c im e n testifies to th e h ig h a rtistic le v e l o f n u m is m a t ic d ie -c u t tin g d u r in g th e p e rio d u n d e r d iscu ssio n , w h ic h is also o n e o f th e rich est a n d m o st p r o d u c t iv e as re g a rd s m e d a llio n s. T h e p ie c e has b ee n d a te d to 1 5 3 - 4 , b u t th e a ctu al h isto ric a l e v e n t w h ic h it c o m m e m o ra te s re m a in s u n k n o w n . In d e e d , w e c a n n o t e v e n b e c e rta in i f a n y such e v e n t e x is te d at all ; p e rh a p s th e scen e is in te n d e d as m e re g e n e ra l p ro p a g a n d a . D u r in g th is p e r io d th ere is n o e v id e n c e fo r a m a jo r v ic t o r y to w h ic h it co u ld a llu d e , th o u g h sch o la rs h a v e trie d to lin k it w it h th e e a rlie r c a m p a ig n s in A fr ic a a n d M a u re ta n ia , o r w it h s o m e o th e r e v e n less fa m ilia r m ilit a r y su c­ cess. B u t th e v e r y q u a lit y o f th e d ie , an d th e lo f t y v is io n w h ic h it in c o rp o ra te s, w o u ld see m to ru le o u t a n y s p e c ific re fe re n c e to m ilit a r y a c tio n . B e s id e s , su ch o c c a sio n s fe ll o u tsid e th e sco p e o f th e tra d itio n , a n d w o u l d h a r d ly h a v e b e e n re m e m b e re d . T h e d o m in a n t fu n c tio n w h ic h th ese m e d a llio n s d e v e lo p d u r in g th e p e r io d u n d e r d iscu ssio n is th at o f p o litic a l p r o p a g a n d a , w h ic h in c lin e s o n e ra th e r to a c c e p t th e h y p o th e sis o f a less s p e c ific m o t i f - th e id e a o f p e a c e

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w it h v ic t o r y , e n s u rin g th e S t a te ’ s p r o s p e r it y an d w e ll- b e in g . In a n y case, this m e d a llio n ( o f w h ic h t w o o th e r e x a m p le s h a v e s u r v iv e d , o n e in L o n d o n , th e o th e r in B e rlin ) is o f c o m p a r a t iv e ly little im p o rta n c e as h isto ric a l e v id e n c e . W h e r e it scores is as a fo rm a l artistic a c h ie v e m e n t, w h ic h tran scen d s th e lim its o f m e re c o in -d e sig n to rea ch th e le v e l, a e sth e tic a lly s p e a k in g , o f o ffic ia l h isto ric a l re lie f. W h e t h e r th e d ie -c u t te r cre ated this scen e s p e c ia lly fo r th e m e d a llio n o r b o r r o w e d it fr o m s o m e r e lie f is u n im p o rta n t. In e ith e r case h e has fr a m e d h is c o m ­ p o s itio n in a sq u a re, w h e r e th e v e rt ic a l a x e s fit c o n s iste n tly in to a m a tc h in g p a tte rn . A t th e ce n tre o f th e scen e, b e t w e e n th e t w o w o m e n c o n v e r g in g o n h im , sits th e E m p e r o r in th e fu ll d ig n it y o f h is ra n k a n d o ffic e , an d b e a rin g h im s e lf as b efits th e p o s itio n h e h o ld s. It is a b e a u t ifu lly b a la n c e d c o m p o s itio n , h a rm o n io u s in all its p a rts, d istin g u ish e d b y stro n g y e t su b tle r e l ie f w o r k . T h e r e is a c a lm n o b ilit y a b o u t th e fig u r e s ’ p o s itio n in g , a w e a lth o f in te llig e n c e a n d im a g in a tio n in th e tre a tm e n t o f th e d ra p erie s. A ll th ese fa c to rs h e lp to m a k e th e m e d a llio n o n e o f th e m o st a ll-e m b r a c in g p ie ces o f e v id e n c e in th e h is to ry o f o ffic ial R o m a n r e lie f w o r k - c e rta in ly as fa r as c o in -d e s ig n is c o n c e rn e d .

6o A N T O N IN U S PIUS

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138-61)

O bv. A N T O N I N V S A V G P I V S P P I M P II. H ead o f Antoninus, w earin g lau rel-w reath , facing r. R e v. T R P O T X I X C O S I I I I. T h e E m p ero r, clad in a toga, stands facing 1., a g lob e in his r. hand and a sceptre in his 1. N ap les, M us. N az. C o ll. Stevens 12 7 5 4 5 . A ureus.

Cohen 3 1 7 ; R I C III, p. 56, no. 247. T h e p o r tr a it o f A n to n in u s P iu s r e p ro d u c e d h e re , o n a m a g n ific e n t g o ld c o in fr o m th e S te v e n s C o lle c t io n , d o e s n o t d iv e r g e v e r y fa r, in essentials, fr o m th e ‘ h ig h ’ c la ssic iz in g t r a d itio n o f th e a u re u s w e e x a m in e d o n P la te 5 5 . B u t a c o m p a r is o n b e t w e e n th e t w o p ieces is in te re s tin g in this re sp e c t n o less th a n o th ers. L ik e its p re d e c e sso r, this c o in ca n b e s e c u re ly d a te d . T h e e a rlie r c o in w a s s tru c k in 1 3 8 , an d is th us o n e o f th e first th a t A n to n in u s is su e d ; th e p re se n t sp ec im en b e lo n g s to 1 5 5 o r 1 5 6 , w h ic h p lac es it t o w a r d s th e en d o f th e E m p e r o r ’ s life (he d ie d in 1 6 1 ) . T h u s b e t w e e n th e t w o p o rtra its th ere is a g a p o f s o m e e ig h te e n y e a rs, w h ic h n o o n e w o u ld gu e ss s im p ly b y l o o k in g at th e m . T h e lik en e ss m a d e in 1 3 8 b ea rs n o re s e m b la n c e fa c ia lly to a m a n o f fif t y - t w o ; a n d th e seco n d p o rtra it, th a t o f 1 5 6 , is e v e n fu rt h e r fr o m d e­ lin e a tin g , at lea st w it h a n y a c c u ra c y , th e fe a tu re s to b e e x p e c t e d in a se p tu a g e n a ria n . N o r can w e b e su re w h e t h e r th is p ro c e ss o f r e ju v e n a t io n ( w h ic h h e re c o in c id e s w it h th e id e a liz in g tren d ) s h o u ld b e a ttri­ b u te d to th e a c tu a l d ie -c u tte r, o r - a m o r e l ik e ly s u p p o s itio n - to s o m e sc u lp to r w h o s e p o rtra it se rv e d as m o d e l fo r th e c o in -d e sig n . It is also p o ssib le th at w h a t w e h a v e h e re is a n u m is m a t ic a d a p ta tio n o f a p o rtra it-b u s t c a r v e d s o m e t w e n t y y e a rs p r e v io u s ly . It ca n b e s t r o n g ly a sserted , o n th e e v id e n c e b e fo r e us, th a t this d ie o ffe rs an o u tsta n d in g e x a m p le o f th e h ig h sta n d a rd s, as re g a rd s b o th c o m p o s itio n a n d r e l ie f te c h n iq u e , w h ic h R o m a n d ie -c u tte rs atta in ed

52

(p e rh a p s ’ m a in t a in e d ’ w o u ld b e m o r e a ccu rate) t h r o u g h o u t this p e rio d , at lea st in resp e ct o f p o rtra itu re . W h e n w e c o m p a re this au reu s w it h th e e a rlie r o n e , w e fin d th e la te r d e sig n a g o o d d e al m o r e e la b o ra te - as can e a s ily b e seen, fo r e x a m p le , in th e tre a tm e n t o f h a ir a n d b e a rd . T h e h a ir b en e ath its la u r e l- w r e a th is n o lo n g e r m o re o r less re a listic a lly a r ra n g e d in a series o f h e a v y in d iv id u a l lo c k s , b u t rip p le s o u t fr o m th e c r o w n in so ft w a v e s w h ic h fra m e th e p r o file a n d fa ll in c u rlin g te n d rils a b o v e the n e c k , th us fo r e s h a d o w in g th e c o iffu re a d o p te d b y A n t o n in u s ’ s su ccesso rs. T h e b e a rd is e v e n m o re s ty liz e d ; n o te th e v e r y ch a ra c te ristic o p e n in g - flo w e r p a tte rn o n th e E m p e r o r ’ s ch e e k , a n d th e s tra ig h t fa ll o f h a ir o v e r th e e lo n g a t e d ja w , a r ea listic to u c h w h ic h w e fin d in o th e r p o rtra its . T h e m o st s trik in g fe a tu re to e m e r g e fr o m this lik en e ss is its b le n d o f r e fin e m e n t a n d fa ith fu ln e ss.

6i

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Obu. A N T O N I N V S A V G P I V S P P I M P II. H ead o f A ntoninus, w ea rin g lau rel-w reath , facin g r. R e v . T R P O T X I X C O S I I I I . T h e E m p ero r, clad in a toga, stands facin g 1., a g lo b e in his r. hand and a sceptre in his 1. N aples, M us. N az. C o ll. Stevens 12 7 5 4 5 . A ureus.

Cohen 3 1 7 ; R I C III, p. 56, no. 247. T h e o b v e r s e o f th is a u reu s, w it h its e le g a n t p o rtra it o f th e E m p e r o r , testifies to th e h ig h c re a t iv e sta n d a rd a tta in e d , in th e c o u rse o f tim e , b y R o m a n c o in ­ d e sig n e rs a n d in d e e d b y R o m a n o ffic ia l art g e n e r a lly . T h e re v e rse d ie , o n th e o th e r h a n d , w it h its p o r tr a y a l o f th e E m p e r o r ’ s to g a -d r a p e d statue, at o n c e b rin g s us d o w n to th e le v e l o f m e re jo u r n e y m a n cra fts­ m a n sh ip . It is w o r t h n o tin g , m o r e o v e r , th at th is d e c lin e m a k e s i t s e lf fe lt, n o t so m u c h in th e e x e c u t io n (w h ic h is still a c c u ra te e n o u g h , w it h a g o o d sense o f r e lie f te ch n iq u e ) as in th e ch a ra c te ristic ‘ to n e ’ , as it w e r e , g iv e n to th e c o n c e p t a n d p ro p o r tio n s o f th e E m ­ p e r o r ’s im a g e . H e is, in d e e d , s h o w n sta n d in g , a n d d ra p e d in th e to g a - th e c o n v e n t io n a l p o se fo r p o rtra y a ls o f this ty p e . N o r is th ere a n y m a rk e d d iv e rg e n c e as re g a rd s r e l ie f te c h n iq u e fr o m s im ila r w o r k s o f sc u lp tu re in w h ic h th e to g a is n o b ly s w a th e d a b o u t th e b o d y , so m e tim e s re v e a lin g its o u tlin e , s o m e tim e s c o n c e a lin g it u n d e r a t h ic k ly b u n c h e d m ass o f m a te ria l. B u t w h a t th e fig u r e o f th e E m p e r o r d o es n o t s h o w is th e slig h te st tra ce o f th at id e a liz in g p ro ce ss w h ic h im p re sses o n e so fo r c ib ly in th e p o r tr a it o n th e o b v e rs e . T h e c o n tra st is im m e d ia t e ly a p p a re n t, a n d b e c o m e s m o r e m a rk e d a fte r a clo se r s c ru t in y a n d c o m p a ris o n o f th e t w o lik en esses. W h e t h e r, fo r p u rp o se s o f c o m p a ris o n , w e re stric t o u rs e lv e s to th e t w o p r o ­ files, o r c o n s id e r b o th dies as a w h o le , it still re m a in s

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d iffic u lt to b e lie v e th at th e su b ject o f ea ch is o n e an d the sam e p e rso n . T h e sh o rt, ra th er sq u at fig u re o n th e re v e rse , an e x a c t m a tc h fo r th e b ig h e a v y h ea d s u rm o u n tin g it, w o u ld h a v e s o m e tro u b le in sus­ ta in in g th a t e le g a n t, so p h istic a te d p e rso n a w h ic h the o b v e rs e e v o k e s in o n e ’ s m in d . Y e t e v e n so the c o n tra st b e t w e e n th ese p o rtra its w o u ld n o t b e so sta rtlin g , d e sp ite th e ir b e in g c o n c e iv e d o n a d iffe re n t scale, w e r e it n o t fo r th e g re a t d is p a rity o f c re a tiv e sty le b e t w e e n th e artists resp o n sib le . T h is a lo n e ex c u se s th e ju x t a p o s it io n o f t w o such dies o n the sam e c o in ; i f th e co n tra st h a d b ee n d e lib e ra te it w o u l d b e m e r e ly lu d ic ro u s.

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M A R C U S A U R E L I U S and L U C IU S V E R U S ( a d 16 1-9 )

O bv. L V E R V S A V G A R M E N I A C V S . B are head o f Lucius V erus, facing r. R ev. T R P I I I I I M P II C O S II. V ic to ry , bare­ breasted, her robe draped about her hips, facing r. tow ards a palm -branch on w hich is a shield inscribed w ith the legend V I C A V G . N ap les, M us. N az. C o ll. Stevens 12 754 4 . A ureus.

Fiorelli 9466 and 9 4 7 5 ; Cohen 24 8; R I C III, p. 256, no 522. T h is a u re u s o f L u c iu s V e r u s , w it h its sp le n d id p o rtra it dates fr o m th e p e r io d o f his an d M a rc u s A u r e liu s ’ s j o in t r e ig n ; it ca n , in p o in t o f fa c t, b e a ssig n e d m o r e c lo s e ly , to s o m e w h e r e b e t w e e n D e c e m b e r 16 3 a n d D e c e m b e r 16 4 . T h a t w a s th e y e a r in w h ic h L u c iu s V e ru s r e c e iv e d th e title ‘ A r m e n ia c u s ’ ; c o n fir m a t o r y e v id e n c e is s u p p lie d b y th e m e n t io n o f th e se co n d salutatio im peratoria, w h ic h w a s a c c o rd e d to b o th E m p e r o r s s im u lta n e o u s ly . B o t h M a rc u s A u re liu s a nd L u c iu s V e ru s w e r e a d o p te d , w h ile still y o u n g , b y A n to n in u s P iu s. O n A n t o n in u s ’ s d e ath th e fo r m e r su c c e e d e d h im as e m p e r o r , b u t th en o b ta in e d fo r h is b ro th e r th e title o f A u g u s tu s a n d g e n e ra l p a r it y o f rig h ts an d h o n o u rs w it h h im s e lf - e x c e p t , n a t u ra lly , fo r th e o ffices o f P o n t ife x M a x im u s a n d p o n tiff. T h e d u ties a ssig n ed to L u c iu s V e r u s w e r e fo r th e m o st p a rt o f a m ilit a r y n atu re . H e a ssu m e d r e s p o n sib ility fo r th e E a ste rn c a m p a ig n to r e c o v e r A r m e n ia , a n d fo r th e s tru g g le w it h th e P a r t h ia n s ; b o th o b je c ts w e r e s u c c e ssfu lly a c h ie v e d in 1 6 6 , an d th a t sa m e y e a r h e w a s v o t e d a triu m p h , to g e th e r w it h th e title P a te r P a tria e , ‘ F a th e r o f h is C o u n t r y ’ . T h e p o r tr a it r e p r o d u c e d h e re m u st b e re c k o n e d a m o n g th e m o st r e m a r k a b le to h a v e s u r v iv e d fr o m this p e rio d . T h e o b v io u s c o n tra st b e t w e e n its m o st salien t fe a tu re s m a k e s it d o u b le in te re stin g , fr o m a

156

p s y c h o lo g ic a l n o less th an a sty listic v ie w p o in t . O n a p u r e ly d e sc rip tiv e le v e l, th e d ie -c u tte r h as g o t a g re a t d e al o f sa tisfa ctio n fr o m e x e c u t in g this h ea d . A t first g la n c e its m o st s trik in g c h a ra cte ristic is its y o u th fu l stre n g th a n d e n e r g y , to g e th e r w it h th e rich n ess an d la v is h tre a tm e n t o f h a ir a n d b e a rd . B u t o v e r an d a b o v e su ch im m e d ia te ly o b v io u s traits, o n e sees that th e a rtist h as a lso a tte m p te d to c o n v e y so m e th in g o f th is E m p e r o r ’ s c o m p le x p e rso n a lity . T h a t sh a rp ly s e a rc h in g e y e , th e su b tle sense o f te n sio n w h ic h p e rv a d e s th e p o rtra it - th ese se rv e to r e m in d us that L u c iu s V e r u s ’ s u n d o u b t e d q u alitie s o f in te llig e n c e a n d v a lo u r w e r e o ffset b y a w e a k n e ss fo r v ic io u s d e b a u c h e ry . T h is p o rtra it, lik e th o se o f M a rc u s A u re liu s a n d C o m m o d u s (P lates 64, 6 5), re v e a ls o n e te ch n ica l tric k p e c u lia r to th e p e r io d - th e use o f th ic k - c u r lin g h a ir to m a k e s tro n g co n tra sts o f lig h t a n d shade on the sitte r’s p ro file . O n th e o th e r h an d , o n e c a n n o t h e lp b u t rea lize th a t in these p o rtra its th e e la b o ra te c a re b e s to w e d o n th e h a irsty le s fo rm s an in te g ra l p a rt o f th e a rtist’ s e x p re ss io n an d sty le , w h ic h is c e rta in ly n o t tru e o f th e e q u a lly c o m p lic a te d la d ie s’ c o iffu re s d u r in g th e F la v ia n p e rio d .

63

M A R C U S A U R E L I U S and L U C IU S V E R U S ( a d 16 1-9 )

O bv. I M P C A E S L A V R E L V E R V S A V G T R P I I I C O S . B u st o f Lucius V erus, facing r., w ith Im perial cloak and lau rel-w reath . R ev. M arcus A ureliu s, fo llo w e d b y Lucius V erus and the P refect o f the Praetorian G uard , m ounts a podium and stands facing r. F ro m here he addresses the arm y, represented b y a gro u p o f fiv e soldiers, o f w h o m one is leading a horse, w h ile tw o others ca rry the standards. In the ex e rg u e the w o rd A D L O C V T I O . N aples, M us. N az. Fiorelli 16003. B ro n z e m edallion.

Gnecchi II, p. 45, no. 1 , pi. 72, 3 (M ilan) ; other exam ples in V ienna (pi. 10, 5) and Paris. It is in te re s tin g to c o m p a r e this p o rtra it o f L u c iu s V e r u s w it h th e o n e o n th e p r e v io u s p a g e , an a u reu s. S in c e th e p re se n t lik en e ss w a s d e stin e d fo r a m e d a l­ lio n , a p ie c e w h o s e m a in p u rp o s e w a s h o n o r ific ra th e r th an e c o n o m ic , it is o n ly n a tu ra l th at its in te rp re t a t io n o f L u c iu s V e r u s sh o u ld v e e r to w a r d s th e h ig h H e lle n is tic in to n e , a n d th e m a sc u lin e e x u b e r a n c e o f th e e a rlie r p o rtra it b e m o d ifie d to a m o re re stra in e d a n d id e a liz e d c o n c e p tio n . Y e t h ere , to o , o n e im m e d ia t e ly s trik in g fe a tu re is th e e y e , w h ic h , as in th e o th e r p o rtra it, a n im a te s th e e n tire p r o file . O n th e o th e r h an d , th e tre a tm e n t o f h a ir a n d b e a rd is h ig h ly p e r fu n c t o r y , th o u g h h e re o u r j u d g ­ m e n t m u st be h e ld p a r tia lly in a b e y a n c e , in v ie w o f th e w o r n state o f th e m e d a llio n an d th e r e to u c h in g s to w h ic h it w a s a fte rw a rd s su b je cte d . It w a s m in te d in 1 6 2 , a n d b e lo n g s to a sp ecial g r o u p issu e d b y M a rc u s A u r e liu s a n d L u c iu s V e r u s , all w it h scenes

158

b ase d o n s o m e asp e ct o f m ilita r y life . T h e re v e rse s h o w n h ere deals w ith a th e m e fre q u e n tly re p re ­ sen ted o n Im p e ria l c o in s : the adlocutio, o r address to th e tro o p s . W e h a v e a lre a d y illu stra te d e x a m p le s o f this scen e as e v id e n c e fo r th e n u m e ro u s v a ria tio n s o f a p p ro a c h an d tre a tm e n t w h ic h th e su b je ct re c e iv e d . T h e p re se n t v e r s io n o n this m e d a llio n o f L u c iu s V e ru s , lik e th e o b v e rs e , has also b e c o m e w o r n t h ro u g h lo n g u sa g e , and s h o w s s im ila r sign s o f re ­ to u c h in g . N e v e rth e le s s its b asic p a tte rn lo o k s b a c k to o ld e r in te rp re ta tio n s o f th e scen e, so m u c h so th at th e y see m c o n te m p o r a r y . W h e n w e s tu d y this g r o u p o f so ld ie rs - th e le g io n a r y seen fr o m b e h in d , th e v ie w o f th e h o rse in p e rsp e c tiv e , o n e h o o f ra ised - w e are d e a lin g w it h m o tifs th at h a v e b ee n fa m ilia r since G a lb a ’ s d a y (cf. P la te 26). T h e p resen ce o f th ree fig u re s o n th e dais, a n d th e te n d e n c y o f th e c o m p o s i­ tio n to fa ll in to p r e d o m in a n tly v e rt ic a l lin es (w h ic h ro b s th e m ise-en-scène o f b o th sp atial d e p th an d d ra m a tic im p a c t) r e v e a l a d ie -c u tte r o f c o n s id e ra b ly less sk ill, s e lf-c o n fid e n c e , a n d o r ig in a lity . T h is re ­ v e rs e is a e sth e tic a lly in fe r io r to th a t o f a sim ila r, in d e e d p a ra lle l, m e d a llio n stru c k b y M a rc u s A u r e ­ lius an d L u c iu s V e ru s ( T o y n b e e, P la te 42, 4) a y e a r o r t w o la te r, o n w h ic h V e ru s is p re se n tin g a y o u n g b o y to th e tro o p s - p e rh a p s th e fu tu re E m p e r o r C om m odus.

64

M A R C U S A U R E L I U S ( a d i 6 i - 8 o)

O bv. M . A N T O N I N V S A V G T R P X X I I I . B ust o f M arcus A urelius, w ith lau rel-w reath , breastplate and Im perial cloak, facing r. R ev. F E L I C I T A S A V G C O S I I I . Felicitas, personi­ fied, standing w ith the caduceus in one hand and the other grasping a sceptre, facing 1. N ap les, M us. N az. Fioretti 9569. Aureus.

Cohen 17 9 ; R I C III, p. 229, no. 202.

A ft e r th e su d d e n d e ath o f L u c iu s V e r u s , in ja n u a r y o r F e b r u a r y 16 9 , M a r c u s A u r e liu s w a s le ft as sole E m p e r o r . T h e au reu s r e p ro d u c e d h e re b e lo n g s to o n e o f th e first issues h e s tru c k in th is c a p a c it y ; it can b e d a te d s o m e w h e r e b e t w e e n D e c e m b e r 16 8 a n d D e c e m b e r 16 9 . F o r a ll p ra c tic a l p u rp o se s, th en , w h e t h e r o n n u m is m a t ic o r sty lis tic g ro u n d s , this sp e c im e n m u s t b e tre a te d as c o n t e m p o r a r y w it h th e sim ila r o n e ju s t d iscu ssed . It is tru e th a t th e t w o co in s are c le a r ly th e w o r k o f d iffe re n t h an d s, b u t th e d iffe r­ en c e lies n o t so m u c h in d e ta ils o f p h y s io g n o m y as in th e a ctu al sty le . E v e n so, w h e n w e c o m e to e v a lu a te th ese lik en e sses in th e ir p r o p e r c o n te x t - th at is, th e w h o le se q u e n c e o f o ffic ia l p o rtra its o f M a rc u s A u r e liu s a n d L u c iu s V e r u s re s p e c tiv e ly - it m a y b e th o u g h t th at th e a rtist re sp o n sib le fo r th e d ie w e are n o w e x a m in in g te n d e d to g e n e ra liz e h is sitte r’ s h ig h ly c h a ra c te ristic fe a tu re s, w h e re a s th e o n e w h o w o r k e d o n V e r u s ’ s p o r tr a it e ssay ed a m o r e in tim a te a n d p e rso n a l in te rp re ta tio n . B u t a c o m p a ris o n b e ­ tw e e n th e t w o d ie -c u tte rs h as o th e r in te rests besid es this. W h e n w e lo o k b e y o n d th o se im m e d ia te effects o f lig h t a n d sh ad e w h ic h a re c h a ra c te ristic o f th e p e rio d , w e see th a t ea ch o f th e t w o h a d v e r y m u c h his o w n w a y o f a c h ie v in g th e m .

160

T h e artist w h o p re p a re d th e d ie fo r L u c iu s V e r u s ’ s g o ld p ie c e w e n t a b o u t his task w it h a v ig o r o u s r e l ie f te c h n iq u e , at o n c e n a tu ra l a n d e c o n o m ic . D e sp ite th e d e ta ile d po intillism e w h ic h h e n e e d e d in o r d e r to re p ro d u c e th at a b u n d a n t h ea d o f h air, h e has n e v e rth e le ss a c h ie v e d h is o w n b o ld ly co n sisten t in te rp re ta tio n - o n e strip p e d b a c k to n o th in g b u t its b asic n a tu ra l ele m e n ts, a n d e sse n tia lly an essay in p u re re lie f, e v e n w h e r e it b e n e fits fr o m co n tra sts o f lig h t an d shade. T h e p o rtra it o f M a rc u s A u re liu s is q u ite a n o th e r m a tte r. A s u su al, its salien t c h a racteristic s are a sh arp , p o in te d n o se (w ith a re c e d in g ch in b y w a y o f c o n ­ trast) a n d a s o m e w h a t p ro tu b e ra n t e y e . It is e n ­ liv e n e d w it h v a r io u s effects m o r e a p p ro p ria te to a d r a w in g : th e r e lie f- w o r k o f th e b u st v a n ish es in a series o f fu s s y lin es, th e ch in is lo st b e h in d th at f l o w in g b e a rd , w h ile th e su rfa ce o f th e e y e is re n d e re d in su ch a w a y as to ro b it o f all d ep th . W h e n w e c o m p a re the tw o artists’ tre a tm e n t o f the h a ir, e s p e c ia lly th o se lo o s e cu rls at th e b a c k , it is p la in th a t th e p o r tr a it o f M a rc u s A u re liu s do es, g e n e r a lly s p e a k in g , re v e a l a m o r e d e lic a te te ch n iq u e , e m b o d ie d in n u m e ro u s su b tle g ra d a tio n s. T h e se b e c o m e m o st o b v io u s o n th e e d g e o f th e c h ee k , w h e r e th e y m a k e a n o t a lt o g e th e r h a p p y co n tra st w it h the flu id lin e o f th e b e a rd .

65

CO M M O DUS

(

a d

180-92)

O bv. M C O M M O D V S A N T O N I N V S A V G . B ust o f C o m m o d u s, w ith lau rel-w reath , Im perial cloak and breastplate, facing r. R ev. S E C V R I T A S P V B L I C A T R P V I I M P 1I I I. Secu rity, personified, sitting facin g r., w ith a sceptre in her 1. hand. In the exergu e, C O S I I I P P. N ap les, M us. N az. Fiorelli 9942. Aureus.

Cohen 700; R I C III, p. 369, no. 2 3 ; G .B e llo n i, in Numismatica (19 4 1), pp. I3 9 ff.

T h is a u re u s is d a te d to a d 1 8 1 , a n d th u s ta k e s its p la c e a m o n g th e ea rliest issues o f C o m m o d u s , w h o , o n th e d e a th o f h is fa th e r M a r c u s A u re liu s in 18 0 , b e c a m e th e n e x t e m p e r o r - a task fo r w h ic h h e h a d b e e n lo n g p re p a re d n o t o n ly b y M a r c u s h im s e lf, b u t also b y h is m o th e r , th e y o u n g e r F au stin a . T h e re ­ v e rs e , w it h its re fe re n c e to ‘ P u b lic S e c u r it y ’ , fits in v e r y w e ll w it h o th e r issues m a d e th a t y e a r, o n w h ic h w e fin d su ch fig u r e s as V ic t o r y , P e a c e , L ib e r t y , F e lic it y , a n d so o n ; th ese all re fe r to a p o litic a l p r o ­ g r a m m e o f ‘ p e a c e b ase d o n v ic t o r io u s m ig h t ’ , w h ic h th e tr o u b le d e v e n ts o f C o m m o d u s ’ s re ig n in fa ct le ft v e r y l a r g e ly u n fu lfille d . C o m m o d u s w a s b o r n in 1 6 1 , a n d su c c ee d ed his fa th e r at th e a g e o f n in e te e n . W h e n h e w a s m u rd e re d (19 2 ) h e w a s b a r e ly th ir t y - o n e , an d h a d re ig n e d fo r less th an th irte e n y e a rs. T h is illu stra tio n th en , s h o w s h im as a t w e n t y - y e a r - o ld , a n d b e lo n g s to th e v e r y ea rlie st g r o u p o f h is c o in -p o rt ra it s. T h e ir su b se q u en t se q u e n c e (as esta b lish ed b y v a r io u s issues) h elp s us to sta b iliz e th e c h r o n o lo g y o f v a rio u s a n a lo g o u s bu sts a n d statues - a g o o d f if t y o f th e m , d e sp ite th e damnatio m em oriae p r o n o u n c e d u p o n C o m m o d u s a fte r h is d e ath .

S t y lis tic a lly , th is p o rtra it fits v e r y w e ll in to the g e n e ra l ic o n o g r a p h ic tra d itio n o f th e A n to n in e s ; it h as e s p e c ia lly clo se lin k s w it h th e liken esses o f C o m m o d u s ’ s fa th e r (P late 64) a n d u n c le (P late 6 2), fr o m w h ic h it p re se rv e s, i f o n ly in a tte n u a ted fo r m , b o th th e ir ch a ra c te ristic to n a l co n tra sts an d a ce rta in te n d e n c y to w a r d s th e b a ro q u e . B u t w h e n w e a c tu a lly c o m p a re th e m , it d o es lo o k as th o u g h this lik en e ss o f C o m m o d u s is c o n c e iv e d ra th e r m o r e e m ­ p h a t ic a lly in th e o ld ‘ h ig h ’ tra d itio n ; th e stern d ig n it y w it h w h ic h th is in v e sts his l iv in g fe atu res p ro d u c e s a n e ffe c t o f fro z e n c o n stra in t. (It is p o ssib le , o f c o u rse , th a t th e d iffe re n c e is p r im a r ily d u e to th e p e rso n a l id io sy n c ra s ie s o f th e d ie -c u tte r.) R e m e m b e r that C o m m o d u s w a s n o m o r e th a n t w e n t y at th e tim e , a n d th en c o n sid e r, n o t o n ly th e q u a s i-im p e rso n a l im m o b ilit y o f h is fe a tu re s, b u t also th e h e a v y , b r o k e n lin es e m p lo y e d to re p re se n t th e m a te ria l f r o m w h ic h th at p o w e r fu l n e c k e m e rg e s . T h e p o r ­ tra it is c o m p o s e d a lm o s t w h o l l y in th e ‘ h ig h ’ tra d i­ t io n ; th e tre a tm e n t o f th e n e c k is p e rh a p s th e o n e n a tu ra listic to u c h a b o u t it.

66

P E R T IN A X (January-March

a d

193)

O bv. I M P C A E S P H E L V P E R T I N A V G . B ust o f Pertinax, facing r., w ith lau rel-w reath . R e v . O P I D I V I N T R P C O S II. O pulence, per­ sonified, seated facing 1., w ith tw o corn-ears in her outstretched r. hand. Lo n d o n , B ritish M useum . B M C V , p. 4, no. 18. A ureus.

Cohen 32—33 ; R I C I V (1), p. 8, no. 8. O n the coinage o f this period in general, see Pinck in N um . Zeitschr. (19 33), pp. 1 7 f r ; ( 1934), PP- 3ffP . H e lv iu s P e r t in a x w a s s u d d e n ly ra ise d to th e p u rp le in J a n u a r y 1 9 3 , at th e a g e o f s ix t y - s ix , im m e d ia t e ly a fte r th e d e a th o f C o m m o d u s , in fa c t b y h is m u r ­ d e re rs, w h o , in re tu rn fo r p ro m is e d la rg e ss, p e rsu a d e d a g r o u p o f P ra e to ria n s to a c c la im P e r t in a x E m p e r o r . T h o u g h h e m a n a g e d to o v e r c o m e th e S e n a te ’ s in itia l u n w illin g n e s s to r e c o g n iz e h im , P e r t in a x n e v e rth e le ss h a d a b r i e f a n d u n h a p p y re ig n . T h is w a s d u e in la r g e p a rt to th e g r a v e d iffic u ltie s w h ic h b eset h im fr o m th e m o m e n t o f h is acce ssio n . T r a d it io n has it th a t w h e n h e t o o k o v e r p o w e r th e T r e a s u r y w a s a lm o s t e m p ty , w it h a to tal su m o f n o m o re th an ‘ decies sestertium ’ (1,0 0 0 ,0 0 0 sesterces, o r a b o u t £ 2 0 ,0 0 0 ) re m a in in g in it. T h e c o u n t r y s id e w a s d e se rte d , fa rm s a b a n d o n e d . F o o d w a s sca rce, a n d th e lu x u r io u s h abits o f th e C o u r t q u ite ru in o u s ly e x p e n ­ s iv e . H is a tte m p ts to r e c t ify th is s itu a tio n p r o d u c e d g re a t h o s tility , n o t lea st a m o n g h is o w n o r ig in a l s u p p o rte rs. T h e u p s h o t w a s th a t o n 28 M a r c h , 1 9 3 , a g r o u p o f th ree h u n d re d P ra e to ria n s b u rst in to th e Im p e ria l P a la c e a n d m u rd e re d h im . T h e a u reu s s h o w n h e re retain s an e c h o o f P e r t in a x ’ s p o lic y in th e d e v ic e ch o se n fo r th e re v e rse . W e h a v e th e p e rso n ifie d fig u r e o f A b u n d a n c e - d ivin a O p s w it h a s h e a f o f c o rn -e a rs in o n e h a n d , a n d e x p re sse d

164

in th e sam e b a ld , s u m m a r y fa sh io n as w e fin d c h a rac­ te riz in g m o st c o in -re v e rs e s d u rin g this p e rio d . A s u su a l, h o w e v e r , fa r clo se r a tte n tio n h as b ee n b e s to w e d o n th e o b v e rs e , w it h its Im p e ria l p o rtra it. T h o u g h th is lik en e ss still l a r g e ly ad h e res to th e tra d i­ tio n fo llo w e d b y th o se o f th e A n to n in e s b e fo r e it, th ere is n e v e rth e le ss s o m e th in g m o r e g e n e ra liz e d a n d ty p e -c a st a b o u t its c o n c e p tio n , a n d an in cre ased sense o f h ard n e ss a n d c o n v e n t io n a l te c h n iq u e in its e x e c u t io n . A s w it h M a rc u s A u re liu s , w e fin d a sharp c o n tra st b e t w e e n th e tig h t-c u r lin g h a ir a n d th e s m o o t h flo w o f th e b e a rd - th o u g h th is m a y in fa c t h a v e b e e n a c h a ra c te ristic o f th e a c tu a l m o d e l ra th er th a n o f th e rea l p e rso n . B u t th e m o st n o tic e a b le fe a tu re is th e h e a v y - h a n d e d a n d u n im a g in a tiv e r e lie f- w o r k o n th e b u st.

67

SEPTIM IU S S E V E R U S (A D 19 3 -2 11)

O bv. S E P T S E V P E R T A V G I M P V i l i . H ead o f Septim ius Severus, w ea rin g lau rel-w reath and facin g r. R ev. P M T R P 1111 C O S II P P. V ic to ry advan cin g tow ards the 1., w ith a cro w n in one hand and a tro p h y in the other. N aples, M us. N az. Fiorelli 1030 2. A ureus.

Cohen 4 18 ; R I C IV , I, p. 1 0 1 , no. 86. S e p tim iu s S e v e r u s ’ s le n g t h y re ig n b e g a n b a r e ly t w e lv e d a y s a fte r th e d e ath o f P e r t in a x , w h e n h e w a s p r o c la im e d E m p e r o r b y th e le g io n s o f L o w e r P a n n o n ia , M o e s ia , D a c ia , N o r ic u m , R a e tia , a n d G e r m a n y . D u r in g h is first fe w y e a rs h e e n c o u n te re d a g o o d deal o f o p p o s itio n . F irst o f all h e h ad to cru sh P e sc e n n iu s N i g e r , w h o h a d also b e e n p r o c la im e d E m p e r o r , in J u n e 1 9 3 , b y th e S y r ia n le g io n s ; la te r, in 19 6 , it w a s th e tu rn o f C lo d iu s A lb in u s , w h o h a d th e le g io n s o f G a u l a n d S p a in b e h in d h im . T h e r e v e rse o f th e a u reu s r e p ro d u c e d h e re , s h o w in g V ic t o r y w it h a c r o w n a n d t r o p h y , w o u ld see m to a llu d e to th e d e fe a t o f A lb in u s , w h ic h t o o k p la c e o n 1 9 F e b r u a r y , 1 9 7 , n o rth o f L u g d u n u m (L y o n s ). C o in a g e , b y its v e r y n a tu re , o ffe rs us s o m e th in g w h ic h fe w o th e r a rtistic m e d ia can m a tc h : th e p o ssi­ b ilit y o f c o m p a r in g , in secu re c h r o n o lo g ic a l se­ q u e n c e , v a r io u s re n d e rin g s o f th e sa m e re c u rre n t fig u r e , a n d o f se e in g h o w c o n c e p t a n d s ty le d iffe r fr o m a g e to a g e . T h e d e sig n o f th e p re se n t s p e c im e n w e ll e x e m p lifie s th is p ro c e ss in a ctio n . I f w e c o m p a r e th is V ic t o r y w it h th e o th e rs th a t w e h a v e re p r o d u c e d (P lates 2 3 , 3 0 , 82, 94) w e fin d d e sp ite th e r e p e titio n o f d e sig n a n d fo r m u la - th a t w e a re fa c e d w it h a series o f b a s ic a lly d iffe re n t in te rp re ta ­ tio n s, w h ic h e m p lo y a w id e v a r ie t y o f e x p re s s iv e m e d ia to re a liz e t h e ir aim s. O b s e r v e , fo r in stan c e, th e p r o fo u n d co n tra st b e t w e e n th e V ic t o r y r e p ro d u c e d

h e re an d th e o n e o n P la te 23 - th e e le g a n c e an d s u b tle t y o f th e o n e is o n ly e q u a lle d b y th e so lid p h y s ic a l v ig o u r o f th e o th e r. T h e d e lic a c y o f lin e a n d d r a p e r y a c h ie v e d b y th e e a rlie r c o m p o s itio n re v e a l it as a s in g u la r ly p u re essay in n e o -c la s sic is m ; b u t w h e n w e tu rn to th e p re se n t sp e c im e n w e fin d solid r e l ie f te c h n iq u e a n d a m e ta llic h arsh n ess o f to n e . D e ta ils w h ic h re p a y c o m p a riso n in c lu d e th e p r o ­ p o rtio n s o f th e h e a d , th e tre a tm e n t o f th e g a rla n d , a n d th e w a y th e fig u r e ’ s r o b e is m a d e to b illo w o u t b e h in d in th e w in d : s tu d y th ese, a n d y o u c a n n o t fa il to see h o w ra d ic a lly d iffe re n t a c o n c e p t u n d e rlie s ea ch v e rs io n . T h e p re se n t d ie -c u t te r’ s a b ilitie s a re w e ll d e m o n s tra te d b y h is h a n d lin g o f th e t r o p h y a n d V ic t o r y ’ s g re a t w in g , a fo r m a lly rela te d g r o u p ; h is g ift fo r c o m p o s itio n is a p p a re n t fr o m th e w a y in w h ic h h e m a rrie s h is scen e to th e e n c o m p a s sin g in sc rip tio n .

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Obu. I V L I A D O M N A A V G . B ust o f Ju lia D om n a, facin g r. R ev. V E N E R I V I C T R . V enus, naked to the w aist, leans against a colum n, a p alm -branch in her 1. hand and an apple in her r. N aples, M us. N az. Fiorelli 10 339 . Aureus.

Cohen 1 9 3 - 4 ; R I C IV , I, p. 16 5 , no. 536, pi. I X , 1.

J u l ia D o m n a , S e p tim iu s S e v e r u s ’ s w if e fr o m a d 18 5 o n w a r d s , w a s b o r n at E m e s a in S y r ia . H e r fa th e r, B a ssia n u s, w a s a p rie st o f th e S u n - G o d , a n d t h r o u g h ­ o u t h e r life she re ta in e d th e m y s t ic o - r e lig io u s a tti­ tu d es she h a d b e e n ta u g h t as a ch ild . W e k n o w th at she lo v e d to s u rro u n d h e r s e lf w it h p h ilo s o p h e rs, m y stic s , littérateurs, a n d o th e r su ch p e rso n s; in d e e d , th e in te lle c tu a l c irc le th us c re a te d m u s t h a v e h ad c o n s id e ra b le in flu e n c e , n o t m e r e ly o n th e c u ltu ra l d e v e lo p m e n t o f th e p e r io d , b u t a lso o n its r e lig io u s a n d p o litic a l life . It is fr o m h e r p o rtra its (ra th er th a n fr o m o u r lit e r a r y sou rces) th a t w e le a rn o f h e r b e a u t y , a n d c o m e to r e c o g n iz e th e t w o m a in c o iffu re s she a d o p te d d u r in g h e r life t im e . T h e co in s w h ic h re p re se n t h er th u s e n a b le us to esta b lish th e c h r o n o lo g y o f h e r sc u lp tu re d b u sts o r statues. W e ca n , in p o in t o f fa c t, is o la te t w o m a in series o f issues. T h e first, to w h ic h th is sp e c im e n b e lo n g s, is d a ta b le b e t w e e n 19 3 a n d 1 9 6 ; th e se c o n d , d istin ­ g u is h e d b y a d iffe re n t, m o r e e la b o ra te h a irs ty le , ra n fr o m 2 1 1 to 2 1 7 . O u r p o rtra it is a fa r c r y fr o m th e v iv id e x p e r im e n ta l a p p ro a c h o f th e A n to n in e p e rio d . T h e h a ir is d r a w n stra ig h t d o w n , a w a y fr o m th e fa ce , fa llin g in t w o n e a t ly - w a v e d b an d s, w h ic h a re th en b r o u g h t b a c k to th e n a p e o f th e n e c k an d b ra id e d u p w a r d s in a c u rio u s criss-cro ss d o u b le p la it

- th e s ty le k n o w n in Ita ly as alla tartaruga. D e sp ite this ric h fr a m e w o r k o f h a ir, J u l ia ’ s p r o file re v e a ls an e x t re m e s im p lic ity , w h ic h is, n ev e rth e le ss, a w o r ld a w a y fr o m th e n e o -c la ssic a l co ld n ess w e fin d in o th e r p o rtra its o f Im p e ria l lad ie s (cf. P la te 57 ). T h e h ig h fo re h e a d , th e a le rt e x p re ss io n , a n d th e tim id an d s e n sitiv e m o u th all te stify e lo q u e n tly to th e c h a ra c te r o f a n E m p re s s w h o s e o v e r r id in g in te rest w a s in s p iritu a l m a tte rs, a n d w h o w a s d o o m e d to an u n ­ h a p p y en d . J u lia fo u n d h e r s e lf th e h elp less sp e c ta to r o f o n e h o r r ific fa m ily s tru g g le a fte r a n o th e r. Sh e s a w h e r o w n son s m u rd e re d a n d at last, in 2 1 7 , a fte r n e a r ly t w e n t y y e a rs as E m p re s s, she w a s r e m o v e d fr o m th e th ro n e a n d c o m m itt e d su icid e.

6p

SEPTIM IU S S E V E R U S

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193-7)

Obi/. I V L I A D O M N A A V G . B u st o f Ju lia D o m n a, facing r. R e v . V E N E R I V I C T R . V enus, naked to the w aist, leans against a colum n, a palm -branch in her 1. hand and an apple in her r. N aples, M us. N az. Fioretti 10 339 . Aureus.

Cohen 1 9 3 - 4 ; R I C I V , I, p. 16 5 , no. 536, pi. I X , 1.

T h e in d isp u ta b le co n tra st, b o th o f c o n c e p tio n an d sty le , w h ic h w e fin d b e t w e e n th e o b v e r s e a n d re v e rse o f th is s u p e rb g o ld p ie c e m a k e s it q u ite c e r­ ta in th at w e h a v e to d o w it h t w o d iffe re n t d ie c u tte rs. T h e p o r tr a it o f th e y o u n g E m p re s s is g iv e n a p a lp a b ly s p iritu a l to n e : th e a p p e a ra n c e she p resen ts ca n b e p a ra lle le d w it h th e tre a tm e n t g iv e n to v a rio u s g o d d e sse s - J u n o as Q u e e n o f H e a v e n , C e r e s , H estia , a n d o th ers. O n th e o th e r side o f th e c o in w e fin d th e v e r y d iffe re n t fig u r e o f V e n u s V ic t r ix , L o v e T r iu m ­ p h a n t, s h o w n a ll b u t n a k e d a n d d is p la y in g th at sp ec ial a ttrib u te , th e a p p le , w h ic h sy m b o liz e s th e le g e n d o f h e r v ic t o r y o v e r h e r d iv in e riv a ls H e r a an d A th e n a . B u t th o u g h this p o r tr a y a l o f th e g o d d e ss c le a r ly re fe rs to th e G r e e k m y t h o f th e Ju d g m e n t o f P a ris, the artist re sp o n sib le fo r it seem s fa r c lo ser, b y b o th s ty le a n d te m p e ra m e n t, to an u n a sh a m e d ly p o p u la r tra d itio n , o f R o m a n o r Ita lic o r ig in . T h e m o st s trik in g fe a tu re a b o u t this V e n u s is h e r sh ape. D u m p y , th ic k -se t, a n d sh o rt in th e le g , w it h a b ig h ea d a n d fle s h y h ip s a n d to rso , she o ffe rs us a so lid , a ll-to o -re a lis tic v e rs io n o f th e g o d d ess. T h e d r o p p e d s h o u ld e r p o se d e riv e s fr o m a lo n g series o f g e m s , w h ic h can be tra ce d b a c k to th e H e lle n is tic era. T h e e x p re ss io n o f c o m p la c e n t satisfa ctio n that th e artist has m a n a g e d to b r in g o u t in th e g o d d e s s ’s face, d e sp ite th e m in u sc u le m e d iu m he is e m p lo y in g ,

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su g g ests a liv e m o d e l ra th e r th an so m e a bstra ct p o r ­ tra y a l o f d iv in it y . T h e v ig o r o u s r e lie f te ch n iq u e w it h w h ic h this d ie -c u tte r has m o d e lle d his ce n tra l fig u r e ex p re sses his fu n d a m e n ta l c o n c e p t to p e rfe c tio n . S u c h c o h e sio n and rich n ess o f d e sig n is so m e th in g ra r e ly a c h ie v e d (as has o fte n b ee n said) in these d iv in e fig u re s o r p e rso n ifie d a b stra ctio n s, w h ic h R o m a n c o in -d e sig n e rs o f th e d a y h a d in h e rite d fr o m an e a rlie r tra d itio n a n d w e r e n o w p r o d u c in g in lifeless, u n in s p ire d co p ie s.

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S E P T IM IU S S E V E R U S , C A R A C A L L A , G E T A ( a d 2 0 9 -11)

O b v. M A V R E L A N T O N I N V S P I V S A V G . H ead o f Caracalla, w ith lau rel-w reath , facing r. R e r. P O N T I F T R P X I I I C O S I I I . C aracalla and G eta, veiled and each h old in g a patera, offer sacrifice at a lit altar before Septim ius Severus (?). In the ex e rg u e the letters S C . N ap les, M us. N az. Fiorelli 10624. Sestertius.

Cohen 489; R I C IV , I, p. 286, no. 452.

M . A u r e liu s A n to n in u s (s u b se q u e n tly n ic k n a m e d ‘ C a r a c a lla ’ b y h is tro o p s o n a c c o u n t o f th e G a llic c lo a k h e u sed to w e a r) w a s b a r e ly t w e n t y - t w o w h e n th e p o r tr a it r e p ro d u c e d h e re w a s m a d e : th e issue ca n b e a ssig n e d to th e y e a r 2 1 0 . B o r n in 1 8 8 , C a r a c a lla b e c a m e so le ru le r a fte r th e d e ath o f S e p tim iu s S e v e r u s ( 2 1 1 ) a n d G e ta ( 2 1 2 ) . H e h im s e lf d ie d in 2 1 7 , slain b y an assassin’ s d a g g e r . In c o n tra st w it h his o th e r p o rtra its , w h ic h a fte r a tim e c a m e to a ssu m e a c o n ­ v e n t io n a l sava g e n e ss, this c o in p re se n ts a v e r s io n o f th e E m p e r o r t o t a lly at v a ria n c e w it h w h a t o u r h isto ric a l so u rce s h a v e to s a y a b o u t h im . T h e y o u t h fu l fig u r e s h o w n h e re ra th e r su g g e sts a c a lm , in te llig e n t p e r s o n a lit y , u n m a rre d b y a n y sign s o f v io le n c e , m u c h less o f th e c r u e lty w h ic h m a d e his re ig n a b y - w o r d . Q u ite a p a rt fr o m th ese c o n sid e ra tio n s, this p o rtra it is also o f c o n s id e ra b le in te rest o n fo rm a l g ro u n d s . T h e m a r k e d re c e ssio n o f th o se sty lis tic traits w h ic h flo u ris h e d u n d e r S e v e ru s u sh ers in a tra n sitio n a l p h ase, m o v in g to w a r d s v e r y d iffe re n t fo r m s a n d fa sh io n s, w h ic h g r a d u a lly e v o lv e d d u r in g th e y e a rs th at fo llo w e d .

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T h e tre a tm e n t o f th e b e a rd re m a in s lin k e d to e a rlie r tra d itio n , y e t e v e n so d iffe rs fr o m it p r o ­ fo u n d ly in th e d im in ish e d r e lie f e m p h a sis g iv e n to th e in d iv id u a l cu rls a n d th e ir e m a n c ip a tio n fr o m th e c h ia ro s c u ro effects at w h ic h e a rlie r artists h ad a im e d (cf. th e fe a tu re s o f th e A n to n in e s , P la te s 6 2, 64, 6 5 ). W e m a y n o te th at th e sam e l o w - r e l ie f t e c h n iq u e has b e e n a p p lie d to th e tre a tm e n t o f th e h a ir ; th e sitte r’ s w e ll- v a r ie g a t e d lo c k s re v e a l th e p ro c e ss e v e n m o r e s tr ik in g ly . T h is s tro n g , sq u a re h e a d is c h a ra c te ristic o f C a r a c a lla ; w h a t len d s it e sp e cia l in te rest is the u n u su a l r e lie f te ch n iq u e e m ­ p lo y e d o n it. O n l y in th e a ctu al p r o file , e sp e c ia lly b e t w e e n n o se a n d m o u th , d o es th e h e ig h te n e d d e lic a c y o f tre a tm e n t p ro d u c e a flic k e r o f n a tu ra lism , a n d th e e n tire p o r tr a it is c u t in r e m a r k a b ly l o w re lie f. T h is m o d e o f re p re se n ta tio n b e c o m e s m o r e n o tic e ­ a b le to w a r d s th e lo w e r e d g e o f th e b u s t; in th e r e n d e rin g o f th e r ib b o n w h ic h b in d s th e w r e a th , an d th e b lo c k m o u ld in g o f th e b u st (w h ic h re c u rs o n o th e r d ie s), te c h n iq u e h as d e g e n e ra te d in to s ty liz e d a ffe c ta tio n .

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SEPTIM IU S S E V E R U S , C A R A C A L L A , G E T A ( a d 209-11)

O bv. M A V R E L A N T O N I N V S P I V S A V G . H ead o f Caracalla, w ith lau rel-w reath , ‘facing r. R ev. P O N T I F T R P X I I I C O S I I I . Caracalla and Geta, veiled, and each h olding a patera, offer sacrifice at a lit altar before Septim ius Severus (?). In the ex e rg u e the letters S C . N ap les, M us. N az. Fiorelli 10624. Sestertius.

Cohen 489; R I C I V , I, p. 286, no. 452. T h is c o in , as h as b e e n said , w a s issu ed w h ile S e p ti­ m iu s S e v e ru s w a s still E m p e r o r (he d ie d th e f o l lo w ­ in g y e a r, in a d 2 1 1 ) . A s r e g a rd s its s u b je c t-m a tte r, w e are fa c e d w it h a p r o b le m - th e id e n t ity o f th e c e n tra l fig u r e . S o m e sch o la rs b e lie v e this to b e S e p tim iu s S e v e r u s ; o th e rs, M a t t in g ly a m o n g th e m , o p t fo r C o n c o r d . B e th a t as it m a y , th e scen e is c le a r ly an a d v e rtis e m e n t fo r p e a c e a n d th e sa n c tity o f th e fa m ily , in a c c o rd a n c e w it h th at p ro p a g a n d a p rin c ip le b y w h ic h th in g s are re p re se n te d as y o u w o u ld lik e th e m to b e ra th e r th a n as t h e y are. O n e e x c e lle n t e x a m p le o f th is a ttitu d e is th e c o in issu ed b y C a r a ­ ca lla , on th e v e r y e v e o f G e t a ’s assassin ation ( 2 1 2 ) , p r o c la im in g fra te rn a l p e a c e b e t w e e n th e m . T h e r e are o th e r in stan ces a m o n g th e o ffic ia l re lie fs o f th e S e v e r a n p e rio d . S im ila r ly w it h th e la te r E m p ir e th e c u r r e n c y re v e a ls an in c re a sin g n u m b e r o f ty p e s w h ic h sin g th e praises o f p eac e an d p le n ty , g lo r y and v ic t o r y , at a tim e w h e n p u b lic a ffairs a re in fa ct o n th e v e r g e o f c o llap se. O n e u n u su a l a n d th e re fo re in te re s tin g fe a tu re o f this re v e rse t y p e is its s ty le . Its c o m p o s itio n , w it h the ce n tra l fig u r e in th e b a c k g r o u n d b e h in d th e a ltar, has a b o ld q u a lit y a b o u t i t ; b u t th e a p p a re n t u n -

174

c o n stra in t in th e t w o p ro ta g o n ist s ’ attitu d e s re v e a ls itse lf, o n clo se r s c ru t in y , as th e resu lt o f m e re te ch ­ n ic a l in c o m p e te n c e . In p a rtic u la r, th e le ft-h a n d fig u re see m s o u t o f b a la n c e w it h th e rest o f th e c o m p o s itio n , a n d re v e a ls a g re a t d eal o f careless s k im p in g in its r e lie f- w o r k . In d e e d , this p o v e r t y o f e x e c u t io n is v is ib le in all th re e fig u re s, a n d n o a m o u n t o f v ir tu o s o w o r k o n th e d ra p e rie s, w h ic h are m a d e to seem lig h t to th e p o in t o f tra n sp a re n c y , ca n m a k e u p fo r it. O n e g ets th e im p re ss io n (w h ic h in fa c t c o u ld w e ll be tru e) th at th e o r ig in a l c re a to r o f th is d e sig n w a s n o t th e d ie -c u t te r ; th a t all h e d id w a s to c o p y s o m e o r ig in a l w o r k a n d im p o v e r is h it in th e p ro ce ss.

72

SEPTIM IU S S E V E R U S , C A R A C A L L A , G E T A ( a d 209-11)

O bv. M A V R E L A N T O N I N V S P I V S A V G . H ead o f Caracalla, w ith lau rel-w reath , facing r. R en. V I C T B R I T T R P X I I I I C O S I I I . V ic to ry stands facing r., in the act o f h anging up a shield on a m ilitary trop h y. Beside it are tw o fem ale prisoners, one standing, the other seated, both w ith their hands tied behind their backs. In the exergu e the letters S C . N aples, M us. N az. Fiorelli 106 36 . Sestertius.

Cohen 495 ; R I C I V , I, p. 2 9 1, no. 4 8 1. T h e sp e c im e n s h o w n h e re w a s stru c k b a r e ly a y e a r a fte r o u r p r e v io u s e x a m p le , a n d a llu d e s - as th e in sc rip tio n m a k e s q u ite c le a r - to th e c a m p a ig n in B r it a in w h ic h e n d e d im m e d ia t e ly a fte r th e d e ath o f S e p tim iu s S e v e ru s , in F e b r u a r y 2 1 1 . T h e t w o sesterces m a y th e re fo re b e re g a rd e d as c o n te m p o r a r y , d e sp ite th e m a r k e d d iv e rg e n c e o f s ty le b e t w e e n th e first a n d th e seco n d . W h a t b o th h a v e in c o m m o n is a c e n tra lly o rie n ta te d p a tte rn . W h e r e th e y d iffe r in th e ir c o n c e p tio n is, a b o v e all, in th e w a y th a t p a tte rn is c o n stru c te d . T h e e a rlie r c o in seeks to a c h ie v e a c e n trip e ta l b a la n c e b y e x p e r im e n t in g m o r e o p e n ly w it h its tr e a tm e n t o f p e rsp e c tiv e ; th e se c o n d d e p lo y s its scene la t e ra lly , a lo n g th e lin e o f the e x e rg u e , a n d o n ly in th e g r o u p fo r m e d b y th e t w o p riso n e rs is a n y a tte m p t m a d e to su g g e s t d e p th . O v e r a n d a b o v e th e d iffe re n c e s in c o m p o s itio n w h ic h th e t w o sp e c im e n s r e v e a l th e re is an e v e n m o r e m a r k e d c o n tra st in th e r e n d e rin g o f th e fig u re s. T h o s e w e e x a m in e d p r e v io u s ly se e m e d la c k in g in d e p th a n d su b stan c e, w h e re a s th e o n es s h o w n h e re

are g e n u in e e x a m p le s o f so lid r e lie f- w o r k . It is cle ar th a t w e h a v e to d o w ith t w o d ie -c u tte rs w h o are t e m p e r a m e n t a lly p o les a p a rt : th e first lo o k s b a c k to tra d itio n a l m o tifs a n d in te rp re ta tio n s, w h ile the se co n d n o t o n ly m ir r o r s th e taste o f his a g e , b u t also fo r e s h a d o w s fu rt h e r d e v e lo p m e n ts y e t to c o m e . O b s e r v e , fo r in stan c e, th e ro b u s t, th ic k -se t fig u r e o f V ic t o r y , w h o lo o k s b o w e d d o w n u n d e r th e w e ig h t o f h e r o w n w in g s ; o r th e d e e p -s c o re d lin es e m p lo y e d to re p re se n t h e r h e a v y r o b e (p ic k e d u p an d re p ea te d in th e d ra p e d g a rm e n ts o f th e p riso n e rs) ; o r th e s o r r o w fu l e x p re ss io n o n th e fa ce o f th e sta n d in g w o m a n , w h ic h g iv e s an a lre a d y h ig h ly d e c o ra tiv e scen e a d e lib e ra te to u c h o f th e d ra m a tic . A ll this is p o in te d o u t, n o t in o rd e r to e x a g g e r a te th e d ie c u tte r’ s a rtistic w o r t h , b u t s im p ly to m a k e it cle ar h o w fir m l y h e stick s to th e re p re se n ta tio n a l a rt o f his o w n day.

73

M A C R IN U S

(ad

217-18)

O bv. I M P C M O P E L S E V M A C R I N V S A V G . B u st o f M acrinus, facing r., w ith lau rel-w reath and breastplate. R ev. I O V I C O N S E R V A T O R I . Ju p ite r standing, facing 1., leaning on his sceptre and w ith a thunderbolt in his r. hand, exten din g his chlam ys p ro te ctively o ver the E m p ero r, close beside him . N ap les, M us. N az. Fiorelli 108 27. D enarius.

R I C I V , 2, p. 10 , no. 75 (aureus).

M . O p e lliu s M a c r in u s w a s b o rn in 16 4 , o f a h u m b le fa m ily , in M a u re ta n ia C a esa rie n sis. T h e firs t p a rt o f h is a d u lt life w a s sp en t in v a rio u s h u m b le p osts. B y fa v o u r o f th e S e v e r i h e ro se , step b y step , in th e Im p e ria l C i v i l S e r v ic e , till at last, u n d e r C a r a c a lla , h e w a s a p p o in te d P r e fe c t o f th e P ra e to ria n G u a r d . In 2 1 7 h e a c c o m p a n ie d th e E m p e r o r to th e E ast, an d w a s th e m o v in g fo r c e b e h in d th e c o n s p ir a c y to assassinate h im . M a c r in u s w a s p r o c la im e d E m p e r o r b y th e tro o p s u n d e r h is c o m m a n d o n 1 1 A p r il, 2 1 7 . T h o u g h th e p r o c la m a t io n w a s d u ly ra tifie d , h e re m a in e d in th e E ast to w in d u p th e w a r w it h P a rth ia . H o stilitie s w e r e c o n c lu d e d th e fo l lo w in g y e a r ( 2 18 ) , th o u g h M a c rin u s seem s to h a v e b e e n a ra th e r less th a n b rillia n t c o m ­ m a n d e r. E a r ly th a t sam e s u m m e r h e, to o , w a s assassinated. T h u s h is r e ig n w a s a b r i e f o n e , little m o r e th a n a y e a r , a n d h e n e v e r c a m e a n y w h e r e n ea r R o m e d u r in g it. A s a resu lt, sch o la rs h a v e d e d u c e d th a t h is ea rlie st issues (o n w h ic h , in c o n tra st to subse­ q u e n t p o rtra its , h e a p p ea rs w it h a sh o rt b e a rd an d l o o k in g n o tic e a b ly y o u n g e r ) w e r e stru c k b y th e m in t in R o m e - w h e r e , as M a t t in g ly p o in ts o u t, he w a s p e r s o n a lly u n k n o w n . A n y lik en esses o f h im a v a ila b le in th e c a p ita l at th e tim e o f h is a cce ssio n w o u ld b e q u ite a fe w y e a rs o u t o f d ate. O n th e o th e r

178

h a n d , th o se p o rtra its e x e c u te d in th e E ast w o u ld be c o n te m p o r a r y , a n d th e re fo re a m o re fa ith fu l re p re se n ta tio n . T h is is n o p la c e to ta c k le th at c o m p le x p ro b le m (w h ic h still re m a in s fa r fr o m a n y sa tisfa c to ry so lu ­ tio n ), th e re la tio n sh ip b e t w e e n Im p e ria l p o rtra its o f th e c e n tra l a n d p r o v in c ia l m in ts, e s p e c ia lly w it h an e x a m p le such as th e p re se n t o n e , w h ic h lac k s a n y tr u ly in d iv id u a l c h a ra c te riz a tio n . A p a r t fr o m th e n o se , th e s itte r’ s m o st salien t fe a tu re , this re m a in s a so m e w h a t fr ig id in te rp re ta tio n , th o u g h w e m a y p e rh a p s a d m ire th e s tro n g lin e o f th e b u st in its b re a stp la te . T h e w h o le th in g is v e r y m u c h in lin e w it h m o st c o in -p o rt ra it s o f th e era , w h ic h h a v e b e g u n to m o v e a w a y fr o m th e c o lo u r fu l e x u b e ra n c e o f th e p r e v io u s p e r io d to w a r d s a stiffe r, m o re s e v e r e ly re stra in e d r e lie f te c h n iq u e , w h ic h a c h ieves m o r e e x p lic it re a liz a tio n in p o rtra its o f th e G o rd ia n s .

74

ELAGABALU S

(ad

218-22)

O bv. I M P A N T O N I N V S P I V S A V G . B ust o f Elagabalus, facing r., w ith lau rel-w reath and breastplate. R ev. C O N S E R V A T O R A V G . Q uad riga (fou rhorse chariot) m o v in g tow ards the 1., bearing a conical black stone w ith an eagle perched on it ; above, in the backgrou n d , a star. N ap les, M us. N az. Fioretti 10 9 53. A ureus.

Cohen 1 6 - 1 8 ; R I C IV , 2, p. 32, no. 6 1, pi. II, 12 . O n th e d e ath o f C a ra c a lla , in 2 1 8 , h is n ea rest su r­ v iv i n g d e sc en d a n ts a n d h eirs w e r e th e sons o f t w o co u sin s. T h e eld e st, V a r iu s A v it u s B a ssia n u s, h ad (a lth o u g h b a r e ly fo u rte e n ) a ssu m e d th e title an d o ffic e o f H ig h P rie s t to th e S u n - G o d , sacerdos am plissim us dei S o lis H elio g a ba li, a n d c a m e to b e k n o w n b y th e g o d ’ s n a m e in c o n se q u e n c e (H e lio ­ g a b a lu s). I f w e a re to b e lie v e o u r lit e r a r y so u rce s, his m o th e r a n d g r a n d m o t h e r sp rea d th e r u m o u r th a t h e w a s C a r a c a lla ’ s n a tu ra l so n b y h is c o u s in ; at all e v e n ts, th e ir in trig u e s h a d th e d e sire d e ffec t. D u r in g th e n ig h t o f 1 5 - 1 6 M a y , 2 1 8 , E la g a b a lu s w a s p r o ­ c la im e d E m p e r o r , in o p p o s itio n to M a c rin u s, b y th e le g io n s e n c a m p e d at R a p h a n a e , n ea r E m e sa . A ft e r M a c r in u s ’ s d e ath th e S e n a te ra tifie d th is p r o c la m a ­ tio n , a n d E la g a b a lu s a ssu m e d th e p u rp le u n d e r th e n a m e o f M . A u r e liu s A n to n in u s . O n 29 S e p te m b e r, 2 1 9 , h e m a d e his triu m p h a l e n t r y in to R o m e , a sto n ish in g th e sp e c ta to rs b y th e o ste n ta tio u s m a g n ific e n c e o f his ro b e s. T h e p r ie s t ly o ffic e w it h w h ic h h e w a s in v e s te d h ad a lw a y s b e e n th e stro n g e s t in flu e n c e in h is life , an d w a s re s p o n sib le fo r h is d e c isio n to tra n sfe r to R o m e n o t o n ly th e sac red sto n e (b a e ty l) o f E m e s a , b u t also th e c u lt o f th e S u n - G o d as su ch . T h e C i t y w itn e sse d an e v e r -in c r e a s in g n u m b e r o f fe stiv a ls a n d p ro c e s ­ sion s in h o n o u r o f th is n e w d e it y - p ro c e ssio n s in

180

w h ic h E la g a b a lu s h im s e lf w o u ld , as a sig n o f re v e re n c e , w a l k b a c k w a r d s b e fo re th e sacred ca r, so as to k e e p h is e y e s p e rm a n e n t ly fix e d u p o n it. T h e re v e rse o f th e co in re p ro d u c e d h ere, w it h its re p re ­ sen ta tio n o f th e car an d th e sacred ston e, m u st re fe r to s o m e su ch o c c a sio n . T h e s p le n d id p o rtra it ca rrie d o n th e o b v e rs e s im ila r ly ex p re sses ju s t th o se p h y sic a l a n d p s y c h o lo g ic a l ch a racteristic s to w h ic h th e lit e r a r y te x ts b e a r w itn e ss. L ik e th e m a rb le e ffig ies o f E la g a b a lu s (see, fo r in stan c e, th e b u st in th e C a p ito lin e M u s e u m at R o m e ) , this lik en e ss ca tch e s an d b rin g s o u t th e y o u n g E m p e r o r ’ s d isso lu te n a tu re . (H is a b n o r m a lit y w a s n o to rio u s .) T h e h a ir is e x p re sse d b y a series o f lo n g , n ea t, c lo s e -o rd e re d lo c k s ; th ere is a sh arp , m e ta llic q u a lity a b o u t th e tre a tm e n t o f th e b rea stp late. W it h th ese c o n tra st th e fa c e its e lf: th a t fle sh y u n d e rlip , th e p ro tu b e ra n t e y e b e n e a th its h e a v y , h o o d e d e y e lid , th e w h o le p r o file e lo q u e n t o f p e rv e rte d sen su ality .

75

PU P IEN U S

(a d

238)

O bv. I M P C A E S P V P I E N M A X I M V S A V G . B ust o f Pupienus, facing r., w ith Im perial cloak and radiate cro w n . R e v . C A R I T A S M V T V A A V G G . T w o clasped hands. N aples, M us. N az. Fiorelli 1 15 8 3 . Antoninianus.

B M C V I, no. 87fr., pi. 47, 89.

T h e T h r a c ia n E m p e r o r M a x im in u s w a s re p u d ia te d b y th e S e n a te in 2 3 8 . A ft e r th e a ll - t o o - b r ie f re ig n o f G o r d ia n I a n d II ( t w e n t y - t w o d a y s , still d u rin g M a x im in u s ’ s life tim e ) th e S e n a to ria l p a r t y ch o se t w o n e w Im p e ria l ca n d id a te s, C a e liu s C a lv in u s B a lb in u s a n d M . C lo d iu s P u p ie n u s, th e la tte r a lre a d y in h is s e v e n t y - fo u r t h y e a r. T o th ese, b y p o p u la r re q u e st, w a s a d d e d G o r d ia n III, th e y o u n g n e p h e w o f G o r d ia n I. W h ile B a lb in u s r e m a in e d in R o m e to d e al w it h th e a d m in is tra tiv e sid e o f a ffairs, P u p ie n u s b e c a m e re sp o n sib le fo r m ilit a r y d e fe n c e . H e m a rc h e d n o rth to R a v e n n a , w h e r e n e w s re a c h e d h im th a t M a x i­ m in u s h a d b e e n m u rd e re d b y h is o w n tro o p s , w h o n o w o ffe re d th e ir s u b m issio n a n d a lle g ia n c e . S o w it h o u t h a v in g h a d to strik e a sin g le b l o w h e h e ld c e le b ra tio n s in h o n o u r o f V ic t o r y , a n d re tu rn e d to R o m e . B u t th e situ a tio n r e m a in e d h ig h ly e x p lo s iv e . A t h o m e , S e n a te a n d P ra e to ria n s s tr u g g le d fo r s u p r e m a c y ; a b ro a d , re b e llio n w a s stirrin g a m o n g th e s u b je c t-ra c e s. T h in g s c a m e to a h e a d th a t sam e y e a r (238 ) w it h a r e v o lt o f th e P ra e to ria n G u a r d , w h ic h c u lm in a te d in th e m u r d e r o f th e t w o e ld e r ly E m p e ro rs . T h e e x a m p le r e p r o d u c e d h e re ca rries o n its r e v e rse th e e m b le m o f t w o cla sp e d h an d s, w h ic h

a llu d e s to th e (fa r fr o m p e rfec t) h a r m o n y b e t w e e n B a lb in u s a n d P u p ie n u s, w h ile its o b v e rs e b ears th e p o rtra it o f P u p ie n u s s h o w n o p p o site . T h is d isp la y s o n e m a r k e d c o n tra st w it h its im m e d ia te p re d e c e s­ sors - th e tre a tm e n t o f th e h air. In stead o f a h e a v y m ass o f c u r lin g lo c k s , still v is ib le (as w e h a v e seen) in th e p o r tr a it o f M a c rin u s (P late 7 3 ), th ere a p p ea rs a v e r y s im p le , c lo s e - ly in g sty le , te c h n ic a lly ex p re sse d b y a n u m b e r o f n ea t, sm all, in c ise d stro k es w it h th e b u rin , a rra n g e d in a re g u la r p a tte rn . A n o t h e r in te r­ e stin g fe a tu re is th e s w e llin g v is ib le o n th e te m p le , w h ic h also a p p e a rs in th e p o rtra it o f G o r d ia n III (P late 76) : th is c o rre sp o n d s to th e e q u a lly p ro m in e n t c h e e k b o n e , w h ic h is in a c c u ra te ly sty liz e d as a r o u n d e d m ass. T h e p o rtra it re v e a ls co n sid e ra b le te c h n ic a l p re c is io n , a n d has se v e ra l rea listic to u ch e s th e tre a tm e n t o f th e m o u th , th e c o n ju n c tio n b e t w e e n c h e e k a n d n o se , th o se lin es a cro ss th e fo re h e a d . Y e t th e p r o file as a w h o le re m a in s fr ig id , a n im a te d o n ly b y a h arsh , m e ta llic s p le n d o u r, w h ic h fin d s its m a x im u m e x p re ss io n in th e E m p e r o r ’ s ra d iate cro w n .

76

G O R D IA N III

(a

d

238-44)

O bv. I M P C A E S M A N T G O R D I A N V S A V G . B u st o f G o rd ian III facing r., w ith Im perial cloak and lau rel-w reath . R e v . V I C T O R I A A V G . V ic to ry ad van cin g to the 1., a cro w n in her r. hand, and bearing a palm -branch. N aples, M us. N az. Fioretti 1 1 6 1 6 . Aureus.

Cohen 3 5 6 ; R I C I V , 2, 16 , no. 1 1 .

G o r d ia n III, g ra n d s o n o f G o r d ia n I a n d G o r d ia n I I ’ s n e p h e w , w a s a sso cia ted , as C a e s a r, w it h th e t w o A u g u s t i B a lb in u s a n d P u p ie n u s a fte r th e tra g ic d eath o f h is r e la tiv e s in 2 3 8 . H e w a s b a r e ly th irte e n at th e tim e . D u r in g th a t sam e s u m m e r B a lb in u s a n d P u p ie n u s m e t e q u a lly tra g ic en d s, an d th us h e fo u n d h im s e lf so le E m p e r o r . D e sp it e th e tu rb u le n t n a tu re o f th e tim e s, h e m a n a g e d to re ta in p o w e r fr o m 2 3 8 to 24 4 , th e y e a r in w h ic h h e d ie d . T h e c o in re p r o d u c e d h e re , w it h th e fig u r e o f V ictoria A u g u sti o n th e r e v e rse , ca n b e d a te d to th e v e r y b e g in n in g o f h is r e ig n : th at is, to 2 3 8 o r 2 3 9 . T h e lik en e ss o f th e y o u n g P rin c e p s o n th e o b v e rs e b e lo n g s to a c le a r ly d e fin e d g r o u p o f p o rtra its , s o m e o f th e m s t r o n g ly e x p re ss io n istic , e x e c u t e d d u rin g th e first h a l f o f th e th ird c e n tu ry . O n e e x te rn a l c h a ra c ­ te ristic o f this g r o u p is th e tre a tm e n t o f th e h a ir, a p o in t w e h a v e a lr e a d y to u c h e d o n in th e p o rtra it o f P u p ie n u s (P la te 7 5 ). T h e o ld c o n c e p t, w h ic h b u ilt u p a d y n a m ic (an d m o r e o r less realistic) w h o le fr o m in d iv id u a l lo c k s o r cu rls, n o w v a n ish es. In its p la c e w e fin d a s h o rt, c lo s e - ly in g m ass o f h a ir, w h ic h c lin g s to th e h ea d lik e a s k u ll- c a p , a n d is t h r o w n in to v iv id r e l ie f b y th e sh o rt, d e ep stro k e s o f th e b u rin . U n lik e th e o th e r p o rtra its o f th is ty p e , th at o f G o r d ia n w o u l d see m to b e a rea listic lik en e ss, w h ic h

set o u t to re p ro d u c e th e sitte r’ s a ctu al fe atu res c o n v e x fo re h e a d , lo n g n o se , ju t t in g u p p e r lip , th e m o u th o f a b o y w h o m g re a t ev e n ts h a v e b r o u g h t to m a t u r it y b e fo r e his tim e . S o b r ie t y a n d re a lism , th en , are th e t w o d o m in a n t m o tifs in th e re s o lu tio n o f this p o r t r a it ’ s e x p re s s iv e m o o d ; b u t t h e y a re o ffset b y th e h ig h , a rtific ia l k n o t o n th e w r e a th , a n d th e a rra n g e m e n t o f th e d ra p e rie s, w h ic h re v e a ls a m a n n e re d a n d fla s h y s tr iv in g a fte r effect.

77

G O R D IA N III

(

a d

238-44)

O bv. I M P G O R D I A N V S P I V S F E L I X A V G . B ust o f G ordian III, facing r., w ith breastplate and lau rel-w reath . R e v . T R A I E C T V S A V G . T rirem e, p ro w to the r., on w hich are visible the coxsw ain, six row ers, and four soldiers. O ne o f the latter is h olding the vexillum (ensign), another a standard, the third the eagle o f the legion , and the fourth stands in the b o w s, brandishing a spear, and h olding a shield w ith his r. hand. B e lo w , am on g the w aves, dolphins. N ap les, M us. N az. Fiorelli 16 0 10 . B ro n z e m edallion.

Eckel V II , 3 1 2 ; G necchi, Gordiano P io , no. 38, pi. 10 5 , 8. O n m edallions in general, see Toynbee; H . H o m m el, ‘A d ven tu s sive profectio G ord iani IIP, A tti del C I N (R o m e, 19 6 1) II, pp. 327fr. In 2 4 1 - 2 , a fte r S h a p u r ’ s e le c tio n as K i n g o f P e rsia , th e s itu a tio n o n th e E a s te rn fro n tie r b e c a m e c ritic a l. P e rs ia n fo rc e s in v a d e d S y r ia , a n d th re a te n e d A n t io c h itself. T h e s ix t e e n - y e a r - o ld G o r d ia n III (p r o b a b ly at th e u r g in g o f h is a d vise rs) fo u n d h im s e lf o b lig e d to p u t d o w n this re b e llio n . H e m a rc h e d d o w n in to the B a lk a n p e n in su la , a n d th e re m a d e re a d y a p o w e r fu l e x p e d it io n a r y fo r c e a g a in st th e P ersian s. H e a d ­ v a n c e d a cro ss th e H e lle s p o n t, a n d in th e s u m m e r o f 2 4 2 re a c h e d S y r ia , w h e r e h e at o n c e t o o k th e in itia tiv e a g a in st th e e n e m y . H is c a m p a ig n w a s c r o w n e d w it h success. T h e m e d a llio n re p ro d u c e d h e re (o n ly t w o k n o w n c o p ie s s u r v iv e , o n e in G la s ­ g o w , th e o th e r in th e M u s e o N a z io n a le at N a p le s) c le a r ly a llu d e s to th is a c tio n a g a in st P e rsia ; it ca n b e d a te d b y th e c ru c ia l e v e n t it d e sc rib e s, th e c ro s sin g o f th e H e lle s p o n t, w h ic h to o k p la c e in 24 2 .

It is in te re stin g to c o m p a re th e p o rtra it s h o w n h e re w it h th at o f P la te 7 6 , i f o n ly as a m ea n s o f assessin g th e te c h n ic a l re la tio n sh ip b e t w e e n c o in an d m e d a llio n . In p o in t o f fa c t it is n o t p o ssib le to m a k e a n y u se fu l q u a lita tiv e co m p a riso n s b e t w e e n th e t w o w o r k s , sin ce b o th a c h ie v e an e q u a lly h ig h an d a c c u ra te sta n d a rd . O n th e o th e r h a n d , a ce rta in d iffe re n c e o f to n e , as it w e r e , is d isc e rn ib le . T h e c o in - p o r t r a it d isp la y s ce rta in to u ch e s o f re a lism , b o th in th e p r o file it s e lf a n d in th e w e ll-d e fin e d s tru c tu re o f th e c ra n iu m , w h ic h stands o u t in such b o ld r e l ie f fr o m its b a c k g r o u n d . T h e m e d a llio n p o rtra it, o n th e o th e r h a n d , seem s m u c h n e a re r to an o ffic ia l lik en e ss, in th e ‘h ig h ’ c o u r tly tra d itio n . E v e r y fe a tu re is s u b tly m o d ifie d to p ro d u c e an im p re ssio n o f d is e m b o d ie d n o b ilit y , w h ic h m a n ifests it s e lf n o t o n ly in th e s itte r’ s e x p re ss io n , b u t in th e v e r y b e a rin g o f th e b u st as a w h o le - so stiff, so u p rig h t. O f sp ecial in te rest is th e tre a tm e n t o f th e r ib b o n b in d in g th e w r e a th , a sim ila r c o n v e n t io n h e re to th at e m p lo y e d in th e p r e v io u s e x a m p le s h o w n .

78

G O R D IA N III

(ad

238-44)

O bv. I M P G O R D I A N V S P I V S F E L I X A V G . B ust o f G ordian III, facing r., w ith breastplate and lau rel-w reath . R e v . T R A I E T V S A V G . T rirem e, p ro w to the r., on w h ich are visible the heads o f six ro w ers, and, abo ve them , the co x sw a in and fo u r soldiers. O f these, the one on the extrem e left is h old in g the vexillum , the one n ext to him a standard, the third the eagle o f the leg io n ; w h ile the fourth stands in the b o w s, brandishing a spear, and h old in g a shield w ith his r. hand. B e lo w , three dolphins dart am ongst the w aves. N ap les, M us. N az. Fiorelli 16 0 10 . B ro n z e m edallion.

F o r b ib lio g ra p h y see Plate 77. T h e w a r - t r ir e m e w h ic h a p p ea rs o n th e re v e rse o f G o r d ia n I l l ’ s m e d a llio n , h e re re p ro d u c e d , e n a b le s us to d a te th e issu e w it h s o m e c o n fid e n c e . It c le a rly re fe rs to th e p a ssag e o f th e H e lle s p o n t, w h ic h th e E m p e r o r a c h ie v e d in 2 4 2 , at th e b e g in n in g o f his c a m p a ig n a g a in s t S h a p u r a n d th e P ersian s. T h e re v e rse is cu t in s tro n g re lie f, w it h r e m a rk a b le a c c u r a c y o f d e sc rip tiv e d e ta il; th e scen e it p o r tr a y s fa lls in to a n a tu ra l c a t e g o r y , an d can b e p a ra lle le d b y v a r io u s o th e r a n a lo g o u s re v e rse ty p e s, all c a r r y in g th e d e v ic e o f a sh ip - th o u g h th is w ill v a r y in ty p e a n d a p p e a ra n c e a c c o r d in g to ea ch in d iv id u a l c o in ’ s r e q u ire m e n ts . It is in te re s tin g to c o m p a r e this re v e rse w it h a r e l ie f in th e T r e v ir i M u s e u m , w h ic h s h o w s a m e rc h a n t-v e ss e l o f th e sa m e p e rio d . In th e la tte r, th e file o f so ld ie rs b e h in d th e r o w e r s h as b e e n re p la c e d b y a r o w o f casks. In o u r e x a m p le w e fin d an a c c u ra c y o f d e ta il a n d a d y n a m ic te n sio n w h ic h , d e sp ite its m a ssiv e stru c tu ra l u n it y , e n d o w s th e scen e w it h d iv e rs it y o f m o v e m e n t , b esid es le n d in g c o n s id e ra b le v it a lit y to its a c tio n .

R o u n d th e stra ig h t lin e fo r m e d b y th e r o w e r s ’ h eads e v e r y d e ta il o f th e c o m p o s itio n is v ib r a n t ly a liv e : th e c o x s w a in , c a llin g the strik e -ra te to his m e n fro m the sh e lter o f th e h ig h p o o p ; th e fo u r e re c t sold ie rs, s y m b o liz in g th e a r m y in its v a rio u s ro le s (the s e n try in th e b o w s o ffe rs th e m o s t v iv id to u c h here) ; th e c o m p a c t a n d a rtic u la te d m ass fo r m e d b y th at trip le b a n k o f o ars a b o u t to th ru st d o w n a n d fo r w a r d th r o u g h th e w a t e r . L a s tly , b en e ath e v e r y t h in g else, w e h a v e th e sea itse lf, w it h th o se th re e d o lp h in s fo l lo w in g the e le g a n tly -p a tte rn e d m o v e m e n t o f the sh o rt, c h o p p y w a v e s .

79

PHILIP I ( a d 244-8)

Obu. O T A C I L S E V E R A A V G . B u st o f O tacilia, w earin g a diadem and based on a lunar crescent, facin g r. R e v . C O N C O R D I A A V G G . C o n co rd , seated facin g 1., w ith patera and cornucopia. N ap les, M us. N az. Fiorelli 120 6 3. Antoninianus.

Cohen 1 7 ; R I C I V , 3, p. 83, no. 12 6 , pi. V II , 13-

M a r c ia O ta c ilia S e v e r a w a s th e w ife o f P h ilip I, th e A r a b , a n d sh a red th e Im p e ria l T h r o n e w it h h im b e t w e e n 2 4 4 a n d 249. L ittle is k n o w n a b o u t h er. T h e d e sig n o n th e re v e rse , w it h its th e m e o f th e C on cordia A ugustorum , a re g u la r m o t if, re fe rs to th e u n it y o f th e Im p e ria l h o u se h o ld . T h is refle cts o ffic ial p o lic y , w h ic h ca n also b e d isc e rn e d in v a r io u s o th e r e n a c tm e n ts o f P h ilip ’ s. H e c o n fe r r e d th e titles o f A u g u s ta a n d C a e s a r re s p e c tiv e ly o n h is w if e a n d sm a ll s o n ; h e also h a d h is fa th e r M a rin u s d e ifie d , d e sp ite th e fa c t th a t h e h ad n e v e r b ee n e m p e r o r . T h e c o in -p o rt ra it s o f O ta c ilia S e v e ra are in th e m a in tra d itio n g o v e r n in g re p re se n ta tio n s o f Im p e ria l lad ie s ; th a t is, th e y la r g e ly d e p e n d o n o ffic ia l m o d e ls , a n d (w ith o n e o r t w o e x c e p tio n s) little a tte m p t is m a d e in th e m to o b ta in an a c c u ra te lik en e ss, le t a lo n e to e x p re ss a liv in g p e rso n a lity . In th e p re se n t case, this lik en e ss o f M a r c ia O ta c ilia m u c h re se m b le s th a t o f T r a n q u illin a , o n se v e ra l co u n ts, n o t o n ly as re g a rd s th e h a irs ty le , b u t e v e n fa c ia lly . T h e m o n o t o n y o f to n e a n d a p p ro a c h v is ib le h e re is lik e w is e re fle c te d in th e u n c e rta in a ttrib u tio n s o f v a r io u s p o rtra it-b u sts fr o m this p e rio d , w h ic h h a v e b e e n id e n t ifie d , fr o m tim e to tim e , as q u ite d iffe re n t E m p re sse s. A m o n g th e k n o w n c o in -p o rt ra it s o f O ta c ilia S e v e r a th e p re se n t sp e c im e n , w it h its c h a ra c te ristic

c ro s s-p la ite d h a irs ty le , m u st b e r e g a rd e d as o n e o f th e m o r e o ffic ia l, a c a d e m ic liken esses. It is w h o l l y la c k in g in th a t sense o f p e rso n a l an d in d iv id u a l ten d ern e ss w h ic h ch a racteriz es s o m e dies, so fte n in g th e lin e o f th e p r o file , a n d in tro d u c in g a g re a te r d e lic a c y in to th e r e n d e rin g o f th e ch ee k s a n d the s o m e w h a t sen su o u s m o u th . T h e fa c e is th in , its s tru c tu re n a t u ra lly stern an d u n b e n d in g , w it h a lo n g n o se a n d p u rse d lip s. O n e ra th e r sp ec ial effe c t is c re a te d b y p la c in g th e b u st in a lu n a r cre sc e n t, w h ic h sheds a h a lo o f lig h t ro u n d th e E m p re s s ’ s fa ce - an e ffec t a m p lifie d b y th e lo o se , o p e n tre a tm e n t o f h e r d ra p e rie s, w h ic h seem a lm o st tra n slu c en t.

8o

V A L E R IA N I AN D GALLIEN US

( ad 2 5 3 - 6 0 ) O bv. I M P G A L L I E N V S P F A V G G M . B ust o f Gallienus, w ith lau rel-w reath , facing r., w ea rin g Im ­ perial cloak and breastplate. R eo. I O V I C O N S E R V A . Ju p ite r, standing, turned to the 1., w ith a thunderbolt in his r. hand. N ap les, M us. N az. Fiorelli 12 4 16 . Aureus.

F o r the coinage o f Gallienus, see Cohen 5, pp. 347ff. ; R I C V , I, p. 74, no. 76 (variant).

T h e r e ig n o f G a llie n u s ca n b e d iv id e d in to t w o p e rio d s. T h e first laste d fr o m 2 5 3 to 26 0 . D u r in g this tim e h e ru le d as jo in t - E m p e r o r w it h V a le r ia n I, w h o s e eld e st son h e w a s . T h e se c o n d p e rio d , fr o m 26 0 u n til 26 8 , s a w G a llie n u s as sole ru le r o f th e E m p ir e . F r o m 2 5 9 V a le r ia n h a d b e e n a p ris o n e r o f S h a p u r I, K i n g o f th e P a rth ia n s, an d in 2 6 0 h e d ie d . T h e g o ld p ie c e r e p ro d u c e d h e re is o f esp e cia l in te re st, n o t o n ly o n a c c o u n t o f its s p le n d id p o rtra it, b u t a lso b e c a u se C o h e n o m its it, as d o M a t t in g ly a n d S y d e n h a m in th e ir w o r k o n th e c o in a g e o f th e R o m a n E m p ir e . T h is o b v io u s ly te stifies to its ra r ity . H e r e w e see th e e m p e r o r s h o w n as a r u g g e d so ld ie r at th e h e ig h t o f h is m a t u r it y in h is late th irtie s. B u t o f a ll th e v a r io u s c o in p o rtra its th at h a v e s u r v iv e d , th is o n e w o u ld see m clo sest to th e k in d o f c h a ra c te r a n d p e rs o n a lit y su g g e ste d b y o u r h isto ric a l so u rce s. It is c le a r ly n e o -c la ssic a l in in ­ sp ira tio n : th is ca n b e seen fr o m th e c a rria g e o f th e h e a d a n d th e lo n g , d e lic a te lo c k s re p re s e n tin g h air. G a llie n u s w a s so a k e d in classical c u ltu re , a p h ilh e lle n e lik e H a d ria n b e fo r e h im , th e fr ie n d o f P lo tin u s. H is m y s t ic a l a n d re lig io u s te n d e n cie s, c o u p le d w it h a m a r k e d r e fin e m e n t o f c h a ra c te r, m a d e h im a n a tu ra l fo c a l p o in t fo r th e in te lle c tu a l a n d s p iritu a l m o v e -

m e n ts o f th e d a y , w h ic h w e r e k in d le d a n d d e v e lo p e d u n d e r h is p a tro n a g e . Y e t h e a lso c o n d u c te d a c o u ra g e o u s c a m p a ig n to re sto re th e fo rtu n e s o f th e n o w - d e c a d e n t E m p ir e . A s ca n b e seen fr o m th e p o rtra its s h o w n , v e r y little is le ft o f th is. T h e p o rtra it u n d e r co n s id e ra tio n , b ec au se o f its co a rse sty le , stands o u t fr o m th e in te n se a n d p e rso n a l p o rtra it o f th e s u c c e e d in g p la te . S o m u c h so, th a t w e m a y w e ll c o n s id e r th at th e d ie -c u tte r, a p p a r e n tly w o r k in g at th e m in t o f R o m e , h as h e re fo llo w e d a p o rtra it in w h ic h o n ly th e sh o rt lo c k s o f th e b e a rd a re a tru e re p re s e n ta tio n o f G a llie n u s - th is is th e re a so n fo r th e p a rtic u la r in te rest o f th is o b v e rs e .

8i

G A L L IE N U S ( a d 253-68)

O bv. G A L L I E N V S A V G . H ead o f G allienus, fa rin g r. and w ea rin g the radiate crow n . R ev. V I C T O R I A A V G I I I. V ic to ry advan cin g 1., w ith palm and cro w n . R o m e, G necch i C ollection . A ureus.

R 1C V , I , p. 1 4 1 , no. 13 0 (quinarius); G necch i in R I N (1889), pi. V I, no. 24, p. 463, no. 13 5 (w ith letter T ). T h is a u re u s, as o p p o s e d to th e o n e s h o w n o n th e p re c e d in g p la te , b e lo n g s to th e seco n d p h ase o f G a llie n u s ’ s r e ig n , b e t w e e n 26 0 a n d 268 - th e p e rio d , th at is, d u r in g w h ic h h e w a s so le ru le r. T h e p o r tr a it it c a rrie s b e lo n g s to a ty p e w h ic h is m o r e b r o a d ly ch a ra c te ris tic o f th e p e rio d , in sc u lp tu re n o less th a n c o in -d e s ig n . W e fin d it o c c u r r in g , w it h m in o r v a r i­ a tio n s, o n se v e ra l dies - in c lu d in g th is a u reu s w h ic h h as a c a p ita l T s ta m p e d o n th e g r o u n d o f its re v e rse . M a t t in g ly a ttrib u t e d th is p ie c e to th e m in t o f R o m e b u t it is in te re s tin g to n o te th e d iffe re n c e s b e t w e e n its o b v e r s e a n d th a t o f th e c o in o n th e p re c e d in g p la te . D iffe re n c e s w h ic h a re a lso n o tic a b le w h e n th e tr e a tm e n t o f th e t w o r e v e rs e ty p e s a re c o m p a re d . W h e r e th e firs t a u re u s (P la te 80) re p re se n te d a r u g g e d , m ilit a r y t y p e h e re w e see G a llie n u s as a p o w e r fu l, y e t re fin e d , im a g e . T h e in te n sity a n d in d iv id u a lit y seen in th is p o r tr a it see m s, in fa c t, to g iv e us h e re a fo re r u n n e r o f th e p o rtra its o f th e T e tra ch y . T h e d e v ic e o f re p re s e n tin g th e b u st b y a fla t a rea in l o w re lie f, w it h a ra ise d b o r d e r , is o n e w e h a v e a lr e a d y seen h in te d at in th e c o in -p o r t r a it o f C a r a ­ ca lla (P la te 70). H e r e it is sh a rp e r, m o r e e m p h a tic , a n d m o r e th an e v e r , o n e fe els, a p re lu d e to th e d e c o r a t iv e r e lie f- w o r k w h ic h ch a ra c te riz e s th e p o r ­ tra its o f th e T e tr a r c h s (P lates 8 5 - 8 8 ) . N o r is th e re

194

a n y tra ce o f rea listic tre a tm e n t in th e re p re se n ta tio n o f th e n e c k , w h ic h has h e re b e c o m e little m o re th an an o v e r - la r g e a n d fla tte n e d su rfa c e -a re a . T h is te ch ­ n iq u e - ‘ m e t a llic ’ w o u ld b e a fa ir d e sc rip tio n o f its effe c t - is n o m o r e th an a s ty listic d e v ic e w h e n e m ­ p lo y e d o n th e n e c k , b u t b e c o m e s h ig h ly a p p ro p ria te w h e n th e artist w a n ts to rep resen t th e ra d ia te c r o w n e n c irc lin g th e E m p e r o r ’ s h ea d . T h e a ctu al h a ir b e n e a th th e c r o w n is s h o w n in th e fo r m o f lo n g c o m b e d - o u t lo c k s , c u r lin g b a c k r o u n d th e n e c k an d c lu s te rin g a b o v e th e fo re h e a d , w h e r e th e a rtist’ s r e l ie f te c h n iq u e has b e e n m o st su ccessfu l. T h e b e a rd , o n th e o th e r h a n d , is rep re se n te d b y a series o f la r g e n o d u le s, e v id e n t ly in te n d e d to e x p re ss crisp cu rls, in so fa r as w e can ju d g e fr o m c o n te m p o ­ r a r y sc u lp tu re , b u t in c ru d e r, m o re e x a g g e ra te d r e lie f th at v e r g e s o n m e re b a rb a ric in c o h e re n c e . E v e n th e a c tu a l fe a tu re s (o n w h ic h th e n e w - fa n g le d e x p re s ­ sio n ism o f G a llie n u s ’ s era seem s to h a v e p ro d u c e d an a ir o fb e w ild e r e d a n x ie ty ) s h o w sign s o f d e g e n e ra tin g fr o m v is u a l c o h e sio n in to a series o f d is ju n c tiv e po in tilliste ele m en ts.

82

G A L L IE N U S ( a d 253-68)

Obu. G A L L I E N V S A V G . H ead o f Gallienus, facing r. and w ea rin g the radiate cro w n . R ev. V I C T O R I A A V G I I I. V ic to ry advan cin g L, w ith palm and cro w n . In the field to the L , T . R o m e, G necch i C ollection . Aureus.

B ib lio g ra p h y : see Plate 8 1.

T h e s m a ll fig u r e o f V ic t o r y o n th e re v e rse o f this sp e c im e n is t o t a lly d iffe re n t fr o m th e o th e r v e rsio n s r e p ro d u c e d in th is v o lu m e , a n d m a y s e rv e to in d ic a te th e w id e - r a n g in g v a r ie t y o f sty le s w h ic h th e h is to ry o f c o in -d e s ig n refle cts. A s w it h p r e v io u s in te rp re ­ ta tio n s, th e g o d d e ss is p o r t r a y e d ju s t a fte r settin g fo o t o n e a rth , still q u iv e r in g fr o m h e r re c e n t flig h t th r o u g h th e a ir ; h e r r o b e is still b lo w n o u t b y th e sp eed o f th e w in d . L ik e h e r p re d e c e sso rs, to o , she b ea rs h e r p e rso n a l e m b le m s o f p a lm a n d c r o w n . N e v e r th e le s s , o n c e w e h a v e id e n t ifie d th e g e n e ra l p a tte rn fr o m w h ic h th e a rtist w o r k e d , n o fu rth e r basis o f c o m p a r is o n ex ists. T h e fig u r e is e x e c u t e d in a h ig h ly id io s y n c r a tic s ty le , c o m p o u n d e d o f tra d itio n a l p a tte rn s a n d d a rin g in n o v a tio n s , o f sk ill a n d in ­ e x p e rie n c e . It is p re c is e ly th is a d m ix t u r e w h ic h h o ld s th e g re a te st a ttra c tio n fo r us to d a y . T h e lo w e r p a rt o f th e b o d y , seen fr o m b e h in d , p ossesses re ­ m a r k a b le n a tu ra l e le g a n c e . S o c lo s e ly d o es th e m u slin ro b e c lin g th a t it see m s to le a v e n o t m e r e ly th at sle n d e r a n k le , b u t th e e n tire le g e x p o s e d - p lu m p c a l f m e r g in g re a listic a lly in to th e k n e e -jo in t, so ft s w e ll o f th ig h a b o v e . E q u a lly a c c u ra te a re th e w in d ­ b lo w n r o b e - a re g u la r fe a tu re o f so m a n y V ic to r ie s , as has a lr e a d y b e e n p o in te d o u t - a n d th e p la c in g o f th e d r a w n - b a c k r ig h t fo o t.

196

B e y o n d th is p o in t, h o w e v e r , p u re c a p ric e sets in . T h o u g h th e le g s a p p e a r to b e seen fr o m b e h in d , th e u p p e r p a rt o f th e b o d y is p re se n te d fu ll-fa c e , so that th e b reasts ca n b e g iv e n c o n v e n t io n a l tre a tm e n t ; an d w h ile th e h e a d a n d o n e a rm a re c le a rly s h o w n tu rn ed to th e le ft, th e o th e r a rm is b r o k e n u p so u n re a listi­ c a lly , a n d w it h su ch d is re g a rd fo r p e rsp e c tiv e , th at it ca n s c a rc e ly b e r e g a rd e d as an a rm at all. T h e in ­ c o h e re n c e is u n d e n ia b le ; rea listic in te rp re ta tio n is b e in g o u ste d b y q u ite d iffe re n t fo r m a l d e m a n d s, o f an esse n tia lly d e c o ra t iv e n atu re. Y e t d esp ite all this, w h a t o n e senses is n o t so m u c h in a d e q u a c y a n d in ­ c o m p e te n c e as th e b e g in n in g o f a n e w w a y o f lo o k ­ in g at th in g s, w h ic h in tu rn b ree d s its o w n sty le o f s e lf-e x p re ss io n . M o r e o v e r , c o n s id e rin g th e g e n e ra l tre n d o f R o m a n a rt in G a llie n u s ’ s d a y , it lo o k s as th o u g h th at s ty le ca n o n ly h a v e ta k e n th e fo r m it d id o n a c c o u n t o f b a rb a ria n in filtra tio n .

83

PO STU M U S

(

a d

260-7)

O bv. I M P C P O S T V M V S P F A V G . H ead o f Postum us, w ith radiate cro w n and w ea rin g the paluda­ m entum , facing r. R e v . H E R C D E V S O N I E N S I . H ercules standing r., leaning on his club, h olding a b o w and lio n ’ s skin. N aples, M us. N az . Fiorelli 12 8 17 . Antoninianus.

Cohen 9 1 ; R I C V , 2, p. 342, no. 64, pi. X III, 7.

M a r c u s C a ssia n u s L a tin u s P o stu m u s h a d at s o m e e a rlie r p o in t, in all lik e lih o o d , b ee n jo in t - g o v e r n o r w it h G a llie n u s o f o n e o f th e G e r m a n fro n tie r p ro v in c e s . In 2 5 9 G a llie n u s le ft h im in c o m m a n d o f th e R h in e d e fe n c e s; b u t h e re b e lle d , p r o c la im e d h im s e lf A u g u s tu s , a n d su b se q u e n tly fo u n d e d th e ‘ E m p ir e o f G a u l ’ , w it h its c a p ita l at T r è v e s . It also in c lu d e d B r it a in a n d p a rt o f S p a in . O u r m a in so u rce o f in fo r m a t io n o n P o stu m u s is T r e b e lliu s P o llio , w h o flo u ris h e d s o m e th ir t y y e a rs a fte r th e re ig n o f h is h e ro . P o llio m a k e s n o b o n e s a b o u t h is p re ju d ic e in fa v o u r o f P o stu m u s . H e d e sc rib e s h im as a d a sh in g an d ta len te d g e n e ra l, w h o s e c o n d u c t w a s so e x e m ­ p la r y as to w in h im u n iv e rsa l resp ect. B e th at as it m a y , it seem s th at he ru le d o v e r G a u l fo r seven y e a rs, an d so ju d ic io u s ly th at he n o t o n ly p u t the p r o v in c e o n its fe et a g a in , b u t w o n th e a p p r o v a l o f the in h a b i­ tants. T h is , h o w e v e r , d id n o t p r e v e n t h is tro o p s fr o m m u r d e r in g h im w h e n , s o m e w h a t la te r, h a v in g ta k e n M a in z , h e fo r b a d e th e m to sack th e c it y . A s re g a rd s th e c o in a g e , P o st u m u s c a m e to p o w e r at a tim e w h e n th e s ilv e r c u r r e n c y , in p a rtic u la r th e a n to n in ia n u s, w a s a p p a llin g ly d e b a sed , w h ile th e a u reu s still m a in ta in e d its o ld sta n d a rd s o f w e ig n t a n d w o r k m a n s h ip . T h is sp e c im e n , a ttrib u t e d to th e L u g d u n u m (L y o n s ) m in t, e x e m p lifie s th e h ig h le v e l

198

o f c o m p e te n c e a c h ie v e d b y th e e n g r a v e r s n o t o n ly w it h th e p o r tr a it o n th e o b v e rs e , w h ic h is in th e best ‘ ofFicial’ tra d itio n , b u t a lso in th e tre a tm e n t o f the fig u r e o f H e rc u le s o n th e re v e rse . T h e a esth etic e v a lu a tio n o f P o st u m u s ’ s issues (a m o n g w h ic h th e m o st o u tsta n d in g are th o se m a g n i­ fic e n t d ies w it h a fu ll-fa c e p o r tr a it o f P o stu m u s h im ­ self, h is fa c e fra m e d in a d y n a m ic m ass o f h air) m u st d e p e n d o n a m o r e g e n e ra l assessm en t o f th eir c o n ­ te x t. S id e b y side w ith c la ssic a lly -in flu e n c e d artists so m e tim e s o f q u ite e x c e p t io n a l b rillia n c e - su ch as th o se w h o d e sig n e d th e dies re fe rre d to h e re , w e can d e te c t a n o th e r, m o r e b a rb a ria n e le m e n t. T h is m u st c le a r ly b e d u e to P o s t u m u s ’ s use o f lo c a l d ie -c u tte rs in h is p r o v in c ia l m in ts a n d th e ir p r o fic ie n c y p o ses s o m e in te re s tin g p ro b le m s .

84

P R O B U S ( a d 276-82)

O bv. V I R T V S P R O B I A V G . B u st o f P robus, facing 1., fu lly arm ed w ith spear o v e r r. shoulder, and w ea rin g the radiate c ro w n o v e r his crested helm et. R ev. A D V E N T V S P R O B I A V G . T h e E m p ero r on horseback, facing 1., w ith one arm raised and his chlam ys fly in g in the w in d ; on the groun d before the horse a shackled p risoner; in the exergue the letters R S . N ap les, M us. N az . Fiorelli 1326 0 . Antoninianus.

Cohen 6 9 -7 0 ; R I C V , 2, p. 36, no. 166.

M a rc u s A u r e liu s P r o b u s , k n o w n as E q u it iu s , w a s b o rn at S ir m io in 2 3 2 , h is fa th e r b e in g a m ilita r y trib u n e n a m e d M a x im u s . In th e a r m y , P ro b u s p r o v e d h im s e lf a b rillia n t o ffic e r, a n d ro se s w if t ly to b e c o m e o n e o f A u r e lia n ’ s m o st d is tin g u is h e d g e n ­ erals. H is su cc essio n to th e th ro n e , a fte r th e d eath o f T a c itu s in 2 7 6 w a s b o th n a tu ra l a n d p re d ic ta b le . T h e le g io n s a c c la im e d h im , a n d h e fo u n d n o d iffic u lty in d is p o sin g o f h is r iv a l, F lo r ia n u s ; a th re e m o n th s ’ c a m p a ig n w a s all h e n ee d ed . H is r e ig n w a s p r e d o m in a n t ly m ilit a r y in ch a ra c te r ; n o t o n ly b e c a u se o f h is o w n b asic a ttitu d e as E m ­ p e r o r , b u t as a re su lt o f th e g r a v e p e rils w it h w h ic h th e w h o le E m p ir e w a s b eset. O n a ll sides h o stile fo rc e s th ru st a n d to re at R o m e ’ s fr o n tie r s ; P ro b u s s a w h im s e lf as h e r restaurator (re b u ild e r o f th e E m p ir e ). It is h a r d ly to b e w o n d e r e d at th a t his c o in a g e (p a r tic u la r ly ric h in v a ria n t in sc rip tio n s o n th e o b v e rs e ) s h o u ld m a k e su ch a p o in t o f r e c o rd in g th e V irtus P ro b i, a n d o f r e p e a tin g h is title Invictus (u n d e fe a te d ). O n th e o th e r h a n d , it is ju s t th is a ll- p e r v a d in g m ilita rism w h ic h , w h ile e x p la in in g su ch w a r - lik e im a g e r y as th a t s h o w n h e re , m a k e s it im p o s sib le to use th e ty p e s (e .g . th e p re se n t re v e rse , w it h th e

200

adventus o f th e E m p e r o r ) fo r a c c u ra te d a tin g p u r ­ po ses. In o th e r cases s o m e re fe re n c e to a sp ec ific h isto ric a l e v e n t c o u ld b e d e d u c e d ; w it h P ro b u s this is o u t o f th e q u estio n . T h e re v e rse s h o w s P r o b u s s ittin g e re c t o n his h o rs e , h a n d ra ise d in salu te, u t te r ly in d iffe re n t to th e p ris o n e r p ro s tra te b e fo r e h im . It m a y p o s sib ly c o m ­ m e m o r a te h is v is it to R o m e in 2 8 1 , o r th e triu m p h w h ic h h e r e c e iv e d a y e a r la te r - th us d a tin g th e co in . B u t it c o u ld e q u a lly w e ll re fe r, in a m o r e g e n e ra l w a y , to h is m a n y v ic t o r io u s c a m p a ig n s . O n th e a esth etic le v e l, th e Im p e ria l p o rtra it, as w e m ig h t e x p e c t , c o n tin u e s a lo n g th e p a th ta k e n b y A u r e lia n ’ s c o in a g e , w h e r e w e fr e q u e n tly c o m e a cro ss re p re se n ­ ta tio n s o f th e E m p e r o r in fu ll a rm o u r. S p e c ia l details to n o te a b o u t th is e x a m p le are, first, P r o b u s ’ s m ig h t y n e c k (in c o n tra st w it h h is ra th e r sm all fe atu res), an d se co n d , th e id io s y n c r a tic te c h n iq u e e m p lo y e d b y th e d ie -c u tte r, w h o h as a u g m e n te d in d iffe re n t re lie fw o r k w it h a su rfa c e tre a tm e n t all h is o w n , d e sig n e d to e m p h a siz e th e ‘ir o n - h a r d ’ ch a ra c te r o f th e p o rtra it.

85

D IO C LE T IA N

(

a d

284-305)

Ob v. D I O C L E T I A N V S A V G . H ead o f D iocletian, w ith lau rel-w reath , facing r. R ev. F A D V E N T A V G G N N . A frica, personified, standing w ith her head to the 1., an elephan t-trophy on her head, h old in g a lo ng elephant’s tusk in her 1. hand and a m ilitary standard in her r. O n the g roun d, ju st visible, is a crou ching lion, d evou rin g a b u llo c k ’ s head. N ap les, M us. N az. Fioretti 13466. D enarius.

Cohen 64.

L ik e P ro b u s , C . A u r e liu s V a le r iu s D io c le tia n u s b e c a m e E m p e r o r a fte r an a c tiv e a n d d istin g u ish e d m ilit a r y ca ree r. H e h e ld h ig h a r m y c o m m a n d s u n d e r b o th A u r e lia n a n d P r o b u s , a n d w a s a c c la im e d E m p e r o r b y th e tro o p s in 28 4 in su ccessio n to N u m e r ia n . B u t h e is re m e m b e r e d less fo r h is s o ld ie r ly a ttrib u te s th an fo r th e w is d o m (re in fo rc e d b y a c e rta in a m o u n t o f stern d iscip lin e) w it h w h ic h h e set a b o u t sta b iliz in g th e E m p ir e , a n d fo r th e p o litic a l a n d fin a n c ia l r e fo r m s th at m a r k e d h is a d m in is tra tio n . In 28 6 h e b e s to w e d th e title o f A u g u s tu s u p o n h is o ld frie n d a n d c o m r a d e -in -a r m s M a x im ia n , th u s in effec t c re a tin g h im jo in t - E m p e r o r . M a x im ia n w a s also g iv e n th e e p ith e t H erculius, w h ile D io c le tia n h im ­ s e lf a ssu m e d th a t o f Jo v iu s . A f e w y e a rs la te r, in 2 9 2 - 3 , h e fu r t h e r n o m in a te d t w o C a e s a rs , th us fo r m ­ in g th e firs t T e t r a r c h y : th e E m p ir e w a s d iv id e d in to W e ste rn a n d E a ste rn h a lv e s , a n d its a d m in is tra tiv e a n d fin a n c ia l s tru c tu re c o m p le t e ly o v e rh a u le d . A m o n g o th e r p ie ces o f le g is la tio n w h ic h h e p u t th r o u g h at th is tim e w e r e th e r e fo r m o f th e c u r r e n c y , a n d his fa m o u s Edictum de pretiis (E d ic t o n P rice s), w it h w h ic h h e a tte m p te d to h alt th e p ro g re s s iv e d e v a lu a tio n o f th e d e n a riu s a n d th e sp ira llin g co st o f liv in g .

202

In 303 D io c le tia n c e le b ra te d a triu m p h , to g e th e r w it h th e vota vicennalia (fe stiv a l c o m m e m o r a tin g t w e n t y y e a rs in o ffic e ); b u t s h o rtly a fte rw a rd s he le ft R o m e fo r N ic o m e d ia , h is n o rm a l p la c e o f resi­ d e n c e , a n d it w a s h e re (1 M a y , a d 305) th at h e a b d ic a te d in fa v o u r o f G a le riu s , w h o h ad p r e v io u s ly b e e n a d o p te d b y h im a n d n o m in a te d as a C a e sa r. A ft e r th is D io c le tia n re tire d to his p a la c e at S p lit, w h e r e in 313 o r 3 1 6 h e d ie d - o f n a tu ra l causes. T h e p e r io d o f th e T e t r a r c h y , w h ic h h e in itia te d , has a h ig h ly in d iv id u a l c h a ra c te r fr o m th e a rtistic v ie w ­ p o in t ; in d e e d , it m a rk s a fu n d a m e n ta l r e v o lt a g ain st e x is tin g tra d itio n s. T h e c o in a g e d o c u m e n ts this c h a n g e in a m o st re m a r k a b le w a y . E v id e n c e is s u p p lie d n o t o n ly b y th e seq u e n ce o f re v e rse -d e sig n s, b u t also b y th e Im p e ria l p o rtra its ; these, lik e e v e r y ­ th in g else, s h o w th e in flu e n c e o f c u rre n t th o u g h t, w h ic h re g a rd e d th e s o v e r e ig n as a d ire c t e m a n a tio n o f G odhead. T h e p o r tr a it o n th is e x a m p le is still in a tra n sitio n a l sta g e , as w e can see i f w e c o m p a re it w it h later sp ec im en s. W h e r e it d o e s a n tic ip a te th e m is in its s o lid , m a ss iv e c o m p o s it io n : th e h ea d assum es a q u a d rila te ra l sh a p e, an d is d iv id e d fr o m th e g re a t b u ll-n e c k b y an in c ise d s tro k e b en e ath th e c lo se -c u t b e a rd . T h is c o n c e p t o f p o rtra itu re , a lre a d y g e o ­ m e tric in essen ce, is still m o d ifie d , in th e p re se n t case, b y th e re n d e rin g o f th e fa c e itse lf, w h ic h b e t ra y s v a rio u s fe atu res ch a ra c te ristic o f th e o ld tra d itio n .

86

M A X IM IA N ( a d 286-305)

O bv. M A X I M I A N V S A V G V S T V S . D rap ed bust o f M ax im ian , facing r., w ith breastplate and laurelw reath. R e v . H E R C V L I V I C T O R I . H ercules seated on a ro ck , full-face, w ith the lion-skin th ro w n o v e r his 1. leg and held in his 1. hand. His club rests uprigh t on the groun d, w ith his r. hand placed on top o f it. O n his r. side a b o w and q u iver. In the ex e rg u e the letters P R . R o m e , M us. N az . 10 3 19 3 . Aureus.

Panvini-Rosati, pis. V I - V I I ; cf. Cohen 306 (variant design). M a x im ia n , a lr e a d y n o m in a te d as C a e s a r, w a s p r o ­ c la im e d A u g u s tu s b y D io c le tia n in N o v e m b e r 2 8 6 , a n d a ssu m e d c o m m a n d o f th e W e st e rn h a l f o f th e E m p ir e . L ik e D io c le tia n , h e re m a in e d in p o w e r u n til I M a y , 3 0 5 , a n d w a s th en o b lig e d to a b d ic a te , s im u lta n e o u s ly w it h his c o - E m p e r o r . A s D io c le tia n h ad a ssu m ed th e title o f Jo v iu s , so M a x im ia n h ad re c e iv e d th e p a ra lle l title H erculius. U n lik e D io c le ­ tian , he a fte rw a rd s m a d e an a tte m p t to rea ssu m e th e p u rp le , in 30 6 . B u t his effo rts w e r e in v a in ; a fe w y ea rs later, in 3 1 0 , h e e ith e r c o m m itt e d su icid e o r w a s m u rd e re d at C o n s t a n t in e ’s c o u rt. T h is a u reu s d isp la y s m a g n ific e n t w o r k m a n s h ip , a n d is still, at least as re g a rd s th e p o rtra it, in the fu ll W e ste rn tra d itio n . F r o m th e le tte rin g o n th e re v e rse it w o u ld seem to h a v e b e e n stru c k b y th e R o m e m in t, an d m u s t b e d a te d to th e e a r ly y ea rs o f M a x im ia n ’ s r e ig n , s o m e w h e r e b e t w e e n 28 8 a n d 2 93T h e d e sig n o n th e re v e rse is o b v io u s ly in sp ire d b y th e sp ecial re la tio n sh ip b e t w e e n M a x im ia n an d H e rc u le s , b y v ir t u e o f w h ic h h e h ad a d o p te d th e h e r o ’ s n a m e fo r h im s e lf; b u t th e re la tio n sh ip as su ch is o f less in te re st to us t o d a y , o b v io u s ly , th an th e

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a ctu a l d e sig n . T h is , as can b e seen at a g la n c e , is b ase d o n a p a tte rn w h ic h h as, as its r e m o t e p r o t o t y p e , th e H e ra c le s E p itra p e z iu s o f L y s ip p u s , a n d p e rh a p s e v e n th e L y s ip p e a n tra d itio n b e h in d th e F arn ese H e r a c le s ; it p re se rv e s th e c o n c e p t o f th e h e ro as v a s t ly s tro n g a n d m u sc u la r. B u t to fin d this p a rtic u ­ la r ty p e , th e seated H e rc u le s, o n a c o in stru c k b y M a x im ia n is e s p e c ia lly in te re stin g . T h e ty p e is e x t r e m e ly ra re in th e h is to r y o f R o m a n c o in a g e , a p p e a rin g o n ly (w ith a n u m b e r o f v a ria tio n s) u n d e r H a d ria n a n d A n to n in u s P iu s. It is tru e th a t th e lo w e r p a rt o f th e b o d y d o es n o t a d e q u a te ly m a tc h u p to th o se m a ss iv e sh o u ld e rs ; b u t this is s o m e th in g w h ic h in v a r ia b ly causes g re a t tro u b le w h e n re d u c e d to th e scale o f a c o in -d ie , a n d in d e e d th e artist h as, n o t­ w ith s t a n d in g , g iv e n p r o o f o f re m a rk a b le b o ld n e ss in c re a tin g su ch a d e sig n . A s a c o m p o s itio n it is n o t w it h o u t o r ig in a lit y : n o te th e w a y th e fig u r e is e n c lo se d b e t w e e n c lu b a n d q u iv e r . T h e r e lie f- w o r k o n th a t so lid m ass o f m u sc le is a lso u n d o u b t e d ly c o m p e te n t.

87

C O N STA N T IU S I C H L O R U S 306)

(a d

293-

O bv. C O N S T A N T I V S C A E S . H ead o f C o n ­ stantius C h loru s, w ith lau rel-w reath , facin g r. R ev. X C - V I enclosed in a lau rel-w reath . N ap les, M us. N az. Fioretti 13 6 3 3 . D enarius.

Cohen 3 4 5 ; Panvini-Rosati, pi. I X (another die).

C . F la v iu s V a le r iu s C o n st a n t iu s w a s b o r n in I lly r ia ; th e d a te o f h is b irth is u n k n o w n . B y F la v ia H e le n a h e b e c a m e th e fa th e r o f th e fu tu re C o n st a n t in e th e G re a t . ( C o n s ta n tin e su b se q u e n tly m a rrie d M a x im ia n ’ s d a u g h t e r, F a u sta , w h o b o r e h im s ix sons.) H is fa t h e r - in - la w a d o p te d h im a n d a p p o in te d h im o n e o f th e t w o C a e s a rs in 2 9 3 , th us p r e p a r in g h im fo r th e su ccessio n . H e c a m e to fu ll p o w e r in 3 0 5 , a fte r M a x im ia n ’ s a b d ic a tio n , b u t h e d ie d th e f o l lo w ­ in g y e a r w h ile h e w a s at E b o r a c u m ( Y o r k ) in B r ita in . H e w a s p e rh a p s in h is m id -fift ie s at th e tim e . T h e id e n t ific a tio n o f e x is tin g sc u lp tu re d p o rtra its o f C o n st a n t iu s (his n ic k n a m e ‘ C h lo r u s ’ m ea n s ‘ P a le fa c e ’ , a c q u ire d b e c a u se o f h is e x t re m e p a llo r) h as p r o v e d a h ig h l y d iffic u lt m a tte r. H is c o in ­ p o rtra its , h o w e v e r , a re f a ir ly c le a r ly d iv id e d b e t w e e n th e v a r io u s m in ts, a n d a g re e (in so fa r as a g re e m e n t is p o ssib le) w it h w h a t o u r lit e r a r y so u rce s tell us o f h im . T h e c o in re p r o d u c e d h e re is g e n e r a lly a ssig n e d to th e C a r t h a g e m in t, d a te d to 3 0 3 - 4 , a n d this re p re s e n ta tio n o f C o n st a n t iu s still a d h e res in essen ce to th e W e ste rn tra d itio n . W e see a d e e p p r o file , f ra m e d b y th e sitte r’ s h a ir a n d c lo s e -tr im m e d b e a rd , its in d iv id u a l fe a tu re s a c c u ra t e ly d e lin e a te d . B o t h b e a rd a n d h a ir a re s h o w n as a m ass o f w i r y stran d s, in c o m p le te h a r m o n y as re g a rd s b o th s ty le a n d d e sig n ; a p e rfe c t se ttin g fo r th a t lin e d fa ce , in w h ic h th e d o m in a n t fe a tu re s a re th e a q u ilin e n o se a n d th e lo n g

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s tr a n g e ly a rc h e d e y e b r o w s . T h e p e rso n a l q u a lity o f this fa c e is a c c e n tu a te d b y th e firm n e ss o f e y e an d m o u th , a n d b y th e sea m ed fu r r o w w h ic h ru n s h o r i­ z o n t a lly a cro ss th e fo re h e a d . Y e t th o u g h th e b asic co n c e p t, th e sh ap e o f th e b e a rd , th e tre a tm e n t o f th e h a ir, a ll b e lo n g in th e artistic c o n te x t o f th e T e t r a r c h y , w e a re still v e r y fa r fr o m th e k in d o f sty liz e d , n e a r­ a b stra ct lik en e ss w h ic h su b se q u e n tly a p p ea rs d u rin g th is p e rio d . O b s e r v e , fo r in stan ce, th e c a r e fu lly w o r k e d ea r, a n d th e a tte m p t at r e l ie f m o d e llin g o n th e n e c k . T h e re v e rs e -d e s ig n o f this c o in , w it h th e fig u re X C - V I fr a m e d in a la u r e l-w r e a th , p r e s u m a b ly o w e s its in sp ira tio n to D io c le t ia n ’ s m o n e ta r y re fo rm s . B y v ir t u e o f th ese th e silv e r d e n a riu s w a s b e in g m in te d o n c e m o r e , its s ta tu t o ry w e ig h t b e in g fix e d at a b o u t o n e - n in e t y - s ix th o f a R o m a n libra (p o u n d ).

88

M A X IM IN U S D A IA ( a d 305-13)

O bv. M A X I M I N V S P F A V G . H ead o f M a x i­ minus, w ith lau rel-w reath , facing r. R ev. S O L I I N V I C T O . T h e Sun, personified, w ith radiate diadem and lo ng robe, stands facin g L, w ith r. hand raised, and 1. hand h old in g the head o f Serapis, w ith a corn-m easure on it. In the ex e rg u e the letters ALE.

R o m e, M us. N az. 87634. A ureus. Maurice III, p. 24 2 ; Panvini-Rosati, pi. X ; A lfild i, p. 198, no. 488 (not in C oh en).

V a le r iu s M a x im in u s D a ia w a s a r e la tiv e o f G a le riu s . H e a ssu m e d th e p u rp le in 3 0 5 , at N ic o m e d ia , a fte r D io c le t ia n ’ s a b d ic a tio n , a n d th us b e c a m e o n e o f th e m a in a cto rs in th e p e r io d b e t w e e n th e first an d seco n d T e tr a r c h ie s - a p e r io d w h ic h s a w th e n u m b e r o f A u g u s t i rise to n o less th an fiv e , so th a t a sa v a g e c o n flic t e n su e d b e t w e e n th e a m b it io u s ri v a i c la im a n ts. T h is g o ld p ie c e , w h ic h ca rries th e o ffic ia l p o rtra it o f M a x im in u s , w a s stru c k at A le x a n d r ia , as w e ca n tell fr o m th e letters A L E o n th e re v e rse . It can b e d a te d s o m e w h e r e b e t w e e n 3 0 9 , th e y e a r in w h ic h M a x im in u s w a s p r o c la im e d A u g u s tu s, a n d h is d e ath in th e s p rin g o f 3 1 3 . T h is lik en e ss is o n e o f th e cle are st e x e m p la r s o f th e te n d en cie s, l a r g e ly O r ie n ­ tal, w h ic h n o w e m e r g e d in art. In d iv id u a l p o rtra itu re w a s a b a n d o n e d in fa v o u r o f a m o r e a b stra ct, static c o n c e p t : th e s o v e r e ig n as s y m b o l. O n e ca n sea rch in v a in in th e fa ce h e re r e p ro d u c e d fo r a n y re fle c tio n o f M a x im in u s ’ s a c tu a l c h a ra c te r. Y e t th is w a s th e E m p e r o r w h o w o n a m e la n c h o ly n o t o r ie t y th ro u g h h is s a v a g e p e rse c u tio n o f th e C h ristia n s , w h ic h w a s little m o d ifie d e v e n d u r in g th e last y e a r o f h is life . D e sp ite th is, p e rh a p s b e c a u se o f it, th e re a l in te re st o f th e p o r tr a it lies in th e v is io n w h ic h has d ic ta te d th e fo r m th a t its d e sig n tak es. In c e rta in o th e r in stan ces

208

(e .g . P la te 89) e v e n th e p r o file re v e a ls s o m e lin g e r in g tra c e o f in d iv id u a l p h y s io g n o m y , b u t h e re w e h a v e a p o r tr a it b u ilt u p w ith in a fr a m e w o r k o f p a ra lle l v e r t ic a l lin es : c ra n iu m to n e c k , fo re h e a d to n o se , w it h a ll n a tu ra l c u rv e s e lim in a te d . T h e s m o o th , u n c o n ­ to u re d fa c e is it s e lf c irc u m s c rib e d , as th o u g h in a fra m e , b y th e se g m e n te d lin e ru n n in g fr o m fo re h e a d to c h in , lin k in g h a ir a n d b e a rd . It is p re c is e ly in this m e t h o d o f c o m p o s itio n th at th e p o r tr a it’ s a p p e a l lies. T h e tre a tm e n t is fir m an d fu ll ; th e d istin c tio n b e t w e e n s m o o th a n d h a ir y su rfa ces is c le a rly d e v e lo p e d , w it h s tro n g co n tra st o f lig h t a n d shade.

89

LICIN IU S I ( a d 308-24)

O b u. L I C I N I V S P F A V G . H ead o f Licinius, w ith diadem , facing r. R eu. C O N S V L P P P R O C O N S V L . Licinius stands facing L, dressed in consular robes, w ith a globe and a short sceptre. In the field, 1., a star and crescent, and r., the letters I S —I N T . In the exergue A N T . R o m e, M us. N az . 87639. Aureus.

Maurice III, pp. 18 4 fr., pi. V III, 3 ; Panvin i-R o sa ti, pis. X II and X I II ; A lfild i, p. 168, 84 (dated 3 17 ). In a d 308 G a le riu s , fo r m e r ly a C a e s a r a n d th us D io c le t ia n ’ s su cc esso r in th e E ast, secu red th e n o m i­ n a tio n as A u g u s tu s fo r a m a n w h o h ad n e v e r h e ld th e ra n k o f C a e s a r. T h is w a s V a le riu s L ic in ia n u s L ic in iu s , h is o ld frie n d a n d c o m r a d e -in -a r m s , w h o th u s b e c a m e M a x im ia n ’ s su cc esso r as E m p e r o r o f th e W e st. A c o n fu se d a n d v io le n t s tr u g g le th en to o k p la c e b e t w e e n th e v a r io u s a sp ira n ts to p o w e r . E v e n ts le ft L ic in iu s in c o n tr o l o f T h r a c e a n d A s ia M in o r . H e esta b lish e d h is c a p ita l at N ic o m e d ia , w h e r e h e to o k r e fu g e a fte r h is fin a l d e fe a t in 32 4 . T h e s p e c im e n s h o w n h e re w a s issu e d in 3 1 3 - 1 4 , fr o m th e m in t a t A n t io c h , as is c le a r ly s h o w n b y th e in sc rip tio n A N T in th e e x e r g u e . S t r u c k in th e v e r y h e a rt o f th e E ast, th is a u reu s is a m o n g th e m o st ty p ic a l e x a m p le s o f a rtistic fa sh io n u n d e r th e T e t r a r c h y , fa it h fu lly re fle c tin g b o th its c h a ra c te r a n d its m o d e o f e x p re ss io n . T h o u g h s o m e d e ta ils a re a lre a d y fa m ilia r - e.g. th e b l o c k - r e lie f te c h n iq u e fo r th e n e c k , a n d th e ‘ fr a m in g ’ o f th e fa c e (a ty p ic a l d e v ic e o f th e p e r io d : cf. P la te 88) - n e v e rth e le ss th e o v e r a ll im ­ p re ssio n su g g e sts a b a s ic a lly n e w taste a n d s e n sib ility . Q u ite a p a rt fr o m th e c o n c e p tu a l a n d n o tio n a l c h a n g e s w h ic h u n d e rlie th is a lte re d v is u a l a ttitu d e , th e d e sig n h as, as it w e r e , e n la rg e d a n d e x t e n d e d its

210

sp h e re o f a c tio n , u n til it o c c u p ie s a lm o s t th e en tire ro u n d e l. T h e n ee d to a d h e re to r e a lity has a lm o st c o m p le t e ly v a n is h e d , an d so to o , as a resu lt, has th e fe e lin g fo r r e lie f te c h n iq u e . T h e h ea d is n o w flat, a lm o s t tw o -d im e n s io n a l ; d ra u g h tsm a n sh ip a n d d e­ s ig n h a v e b e c o m e th e a rtist’ s p rim e co n c e rn . W ith f ir m , c le a r lin es h e has b lo c k e d in L ic in iu s ’ s p ro file (the la r g e e y e is p re se n ted fu ll-fa c e ) w ith its e d g in g o f h a ir a n d b e a r d ; h e re a n d th ere th e b u rin h as cu t fin e, lo n g p a ra lle l stro k e s w it h th at c h e e rfu l self-a ssu ra n ce o n e fin d s in g ra ffiti. T h e re v e rse o f this c o in sh o w s th e E m p e r o r s ta n d in g , in c o n su la r a ttire : th at is, the tunica pa lm a ta, w it h th e toga picta o v e r it, th e latter d r o p p in g fr o m o n e s h o u ld e r a n d g a th e re d o n the fo r e a r m . B u t e v e n th is is a ty p ic a l d e sig n o f th e p e rio d , p assed o n fr o m o n e E m p e r o r to a n o th e r.

90

LIC IN IU S I ( a d 308-24)

O bv. L I C I N I V S A V G O B D V F I L I S V I . B ust o f Licinius, full-face, bare-headed and draped. R ev. I O V I C O N S L I C I N I A V G . Ju p ite r, en­ throned, full-face. In his r. hand he holds the g lob e o f v ic to ry , and in his 1. a lo n g sceptre, w h ich rests on the dais w h ere he sits. O n the front o f the dais the inscription S I C X - S I C X X . B eside the throne is an eagle, w ith a cro w n in its beak. In the ex e rg u e the letters S M N A . R o m e, M us. N az. 876 4 1. Aureus.

Panvin i-R osati, pi. X I V ; cf. Cohen 12 8 ; Maurice, III, p. 48 (w h o dates it 3 2 3 -4 ) ; A lföldi, p. 17 8 , no. 262.

T h e w e a lt h o f s u p p le m e n ta ry d e ta il fu rn is h e d b y th is c o in is in v a lu a b le fo r d e te rm in in g its h isto ric a l c o n te x t. B e f o r e w e e m b a r k o n o u r e x a m in a tio n o f th e o b v e r s e , th e re fo re , it m a y b e w o r t h p a u s in g fo r a m o m e n t to see w h a t th e re v e rs e ca n te ll us. F irst, th ere is th e sta n d in g fig u re o f Ju p it e r , L ic in iu s ’ s p r o t e c t o r : a w e ll- c o n c e iv e d a n d te c h n ic a lly e x c e l­ le n t p ie c e o f w o r k in th e rea listic tra d itio n . B u t b esid es this, w e n ee d o n ly lo o k in th e e x e r g u e to fin d o u t w h e r e th e c o in w a s stru c k , an d b y w h ic h o ffic in a (w o r k s h o p ). T h e letters S M N A c a n b e in te rp re t e d as Sacra M o n eta N icom edia Q uarta. T h e r e fe re n c e to p ra y e rs o r v o w s - S I C X , S I C X X , ‘ th u s fo r te n ’ o r ‘ th u s fo r t w e n t y (y e a rs)’ - d e n o te th e o c c a s io n a n d th us e n a b le u s to w o r k o u t w h e n th e c o in w a s m in t e d : a d 3 1 7 , to c o m m e m o r a t e th e e ld e r L ic in iu s ’ s decennalia. S im ila r ly th e in sc rip tio n O B D V F I L I S U I o n th e o b v e r s e can b e in te r­ p re te d as O b D ecennalia Vota F i l i S u i (‘ T o c o m m e m o ­ ra te th e d e c e n n ia l v o w s o f h is s o n ’), a n d w ill re fe r to th e vota suscepta th a t w e r e d e c re e d w h e n L ic in iu s th e Y o u n g e r w a s e le c te d C a e s a r, in M a r c h 3 1 7 .

212

T h e lik en e ss is o f g re a t in te rest o n s e v e ra l co u n ts. T o b e g in w ith , it a b a n d o n s the lo n g -e s ta b lis h e d c o n v e n t io n th at p o rtra its s h o u ld b e e x e c u te d in p r o file . T h e o n ly o th e r e x c e p t io n to this ru le u p till n o w h ad b ee n P o stu m u s . T h e r e is also th e q u e stio n o f sty le . T h e a rtist’ s b le n d o f c o n v e n t io n a l r e lie f te c h n iq u e a n d p la in in e x p e rie n c e h as p ro d u c e d a m o st c u rio u s h y b r id . T h e ‘ fr a m e ’ o f h a ir a n d b e a rd w h ic h s u rro u n d s th e fa ce m u c h rese m b le s th at in th e p o r tr a it o f L ic in iu s w e h a v e a lre a d y stu d ie d (P late 89). In o n e sense it fo r m s a d ire c t an tith esis to th e e a rlie r v e rs io n , e v e n th o u g h t h e y b o th , v e r y p r o b ­ a b ly , d e r iv e f r o m a c o m m o n p r o to t y p e . A s re g a rd s th e a c tu a l fe atu res th e d ie -c u tte r has b e e n g iv e n a fre e h a n d , a n d has c le a r ly fo llo w e d h is o w n b en t. A b s t r a c tio n h as b e e n t h r o w n o v e r b o a r d ; th e lik en e ss th a t e m e rg e s is as re a listic as h e c o u ld m a k e it. W h a t w e h a v e h e re is n o m e re a b stra ct fo r m , n o t e v e n a re fle c tio n o f s o m e n a tu ra listic tre n d o r o th e r, b u t a c lu m s y , n a iv e a tte m p t to re p ro d u c e th e tru e lin e a ­ m e n ts o f a h u m a n fa ce . It is tru e th at th ese la rg e , r o u n d e d e y e s re fle c t th e g e n e ra l p a tte rn a d o p te d fo r sc u lp tu re d p o rtra its o f th e p e r io d ; y e t in th e m , an d t h e ir o d d ly a s y m m e t ric a l p la c in g - n o t to m e n tio n th e e x e c u t io n o f th e m o u th - w e ca n s u re ly d e tec t, n o t c o n v e n t io n , b u t in e x p e rie n c e ?

91

LICIN IU S II ( a d 308-24)

O bv. D N V A L L I C I N L I C I N I V S N O B C . B ust o f Licinius the Y o u n g e r, full-face, bareheaded and draped. R ev. I O V I C O N S E R V A T O R I C A E S . Ju p ite r enthroned, full-face, w ith sceptre and glob e o f v icto ry, on a dais inscribed in fron t w ith the legend S I C V - S I C X . Beside Ju p ite r an eagle w ith a cro w n in its beak. In the ex e rg u e the letters S M N T . R o m e, M us. N az. 87645. A ureus.

Panvin i-R osati, pi. X V I ; cf. Cohen 2 8 ; Maurice III, pp. 46 ff. ; A lfild i, p. 17 7 , no. 253.

W it h th is c o in , as w it h th e p re c e d in g o n e , th e letters in th e e x e r g u e o f th e r e v e rse p r o v id e a m e a n s o f id e n t ify in g th e m in t w h e r e it w a s s tru c k . S M N T c a n b e in te rp re t e d as Sacra M o n eta N ico m edia T ertias, w h e r e th e th re e d e n o te s th e p a rtic u la r w o r k s h o p o f th e m in t in q u e stio n . F u r th e r m o r e , th e c o m ­ m e m o r a t iv e in s c rip tio n o n th e re v e r s e - S I C V S I C X - e n a b le s us to d a te th e sp e c im e n to th e y e a r 3 2 1 - 2 . T h is t o g e th e r w it h th e m e n t io n o f vota quin quenn alia soluta, b rin g s it d o w n to a p o in t fiv e y e a rs a fte r 3 1 7 , th e d a te o f th e y o u n g e r L ic in iu s ’ s p r o c la m a t io n as C a e s a r. O n l y a fe w y e a rs sep a rate this a u re u s fr o m th e o n e w e h a v e ju s t e x a m in e d (P la te 9 0), w h ic h w a s also issu e d b y L ic in iu s fr o m th e N ic o m e d ia m in t, a lb e it th r o u g h a d iffe re n t o ffic in a , th e fo u r t h ra th e r th a n th e th ird . V a le r iu s L ic in ia n u s, L ic in iu s th e Y o u n g e r , w a s an ille g itim a te so n o f L ic in iu s I. T h o u g h h e w a s b o rn in a n d liv e d th r o u g h e x t r e m e ly t ro u b le d a n d v io le n t tim e s, h e n e v e r p la y e d a le a d in g p a rt in th e h is to r y o f h is e ra , b u t a lw a y s r e m a in e d s u b o rd in a te to his fa th e r. H e s u r v iv e d fo r a b o u t ten y e a rs a fte r th e la tte r’ s d e a th , le a d in g a life o f r e la tiv e o b s c u r ity at

214

th e c o u rt o f C o n st a n t in e I. H is p o rtra it, p e rh a p s u n ­ in te n tio n a lly , seem s to h a v e c a u g h t h is w e a k e r , less c o lo u r fu l p e rso n a lit y to p e rfe c tio n ; w h a t a p p ea rs o n th is a u re u s is a m u c h -d ilu t e d v e rs io n o f his fa th e r’ s lik en e ss. O n c e a g a in w e are c o n fro n te d w it h a fu llfa ce p o r t r a it ; c le a r ly th is c o n v e n t io n w a s p o p u la r w it h th e d ie -c u tte rs o f N ic o m e d ia at th e tim e , b u t th e p re se n t s p e c im e n is e v e n m o r e s ty liz e d th an its p re d e c e s so r. H a ir a n d b e a rd h a v e v a n is h e d a lt o g e th e r , th e e y e s a re re d u c e d to t w o ro u n d g lo b u le s, p r o ­ tru d in g fr o m lashless e y e lid s , a n d th e w h o le fa ce has th e s w a g , d iste n d e d r o t u n d it y o f an e g g , in w h ic h e y e s, n o se a n d m o u th a p p e a r as m in u s c u le p u n c tu a ­ tio n m a rk s. T h e r e l ie f te c h n iq u e , such as it is, su g g ests n o th in g so m u c h as a c h ild ’ s c la y m o d e l. F a c e d w ith su ch a sp e c im e n , it is a m o o t p o in t w h e th e r w e can ta lk o f ‘ s t y le ’ at all. P e rh a p s ‘ p o v e r t y o f e x p re ss io n ’ w o u ld b e m o r e a p p ro p ria te .

92

C O N S T A N T IN E I (a d 306-37)

O bv. C O N S T A N T I N V S N O B C A E S . H ead o f C onstantine the G reat, w ith lau rel-w reath , facing r. R e v . C O N S E R V A T O R E S V R B S V A E . H exa­ style tem ple, in w h ich sits R o m e, personified, full-face but head turned to the 1., w ith helm et, spear and globe. In the ex e rg u e the letters R Q . N ap les, M us. N az . Fioretti 138 4 3. Follis (silvered bronze piece o f c. 15 0 g r., first struck b y D iocletian).

Cohen, p. 236, no. 7 4 ; Maurice I, pp. 1 7 5 f r .; A .Je lo fn ik , in Atti del C I N (R o m e, 19 6 1), II, pp. 377fr., w ith bib lio ­ g rap h y. F o r coin-portraits o f C onstantine, see Alföldi.

C . F la v iu s V a le riu s C o n sta n tin u s w a s b o rn at N a issu s in U p p e r M o e s ia o n 2 7 F e b r u a r y , p r o b a b ly in th e y e a r 2 8 5 , to C o n st a n t iu s C h lo r u s (see P la te 88) a n d H e le n a . In 3 0 6 , o n th e d e ath o f h is fa th e r, h e w a s a c c la im e d b y th e a r m y in G a u l, a n d r e c o g n iz e d as G a le r iu s ’ s h e ir. A y e a r la te r M a x im ia n g a v e h im his y o u n g d a u g h t e r F au sta in m a rria g e . C o n st a n t in e m a rc h e d d o w n in to Ita ly in 3 1 2 , w h e r e o n 23 O c t o b e r th a t y e a r h e d e fe a te d h is r iv a l M a x e n t iu s at th e b a ttle o f th e M ilv ia n B r id g e , a n d e n te re d R o m e . H is s u b se q u e n t v ic t o r y o v e r L ic in iu s ( 3 2 4 - 5 ) fin a lly c o n s o lid a te d h is p o s itio n , a n d th e n c e fo r w a r d h e c o n tin u e d as sole ru le r o f th e E m p ir e . T h e s p le n d id p o r tr a it r e p ro d u c e d h e re is o n e o f th e o ld e st k n o w n lik en e sses o f C o n sta n tin e . It p o rtra y s h im as C a e s a r, a n d m u st th e r e fo r e h a v e b e e n s tru c k in 3 0 6 - 7 . It c a n t h e re fo re b e a ssig n e d to th e first p h ase o f C o n s t a n t in ia n ic o n o g r a p h y , in w h ic h his lik en ess, th o u g h a ssim ila te d to th e tra d itio n c u rre n t d u rin g th e T e t r a r c h y , h as n o t y e t a ssu m e d th o se id io s y n ­ cra tic tra its th at b e g in to ch a ra c te riz e it later - e ith e r u n d e r th e in flu e n c e o f fa sh io n a b le n o tio n s c o n c e rn ­ in g p o rtra itu re , o r else as th e resu lt o f g e n e ra l (and o n o c c a s io n h ig h ly sp ec ific) p o lic y d e cisio n s ta k e n b y

216

C o n s t a n t in e h im s e lf. T h e in flu e n c e o f c o n te m p o r a r y s ty le (at least as re g a rd s c o in -p o rtra itu re ) is in d is­ p u ta b le . W e can d e te c t it in th e ‘ q u a d rila te ra l’ c o m ­ p o s itio n , in th e b l o c k - r e lie f te c h n iq u e e m p lo y e d o n th e n e c k , in th e re p re s e n ta tio n o f h a ir a n d b e a rd as a c o m p a c t m ass, in d ic a te d b y clo se stro k es o f th e b u rin , in th e d e e p p a ra lle l lin es sc o re d across th e fo re h e a d . Y e t d e sp ite a ll th is, w h a t e m e rg e s fr o m th e d ie is, n e v e rth e le ss, th e h ig h ly - c h a ra c te riz e d p o rtra it o f an in d iv id u a l. C o n s t a n t in e ’ s fa ce , lik e th o se o f th e o th e r T e t ra rch s, is e n c lo s e d b y th e ty p ic a l ‘ fr a m e ’ o f b e a rd an d h a ir, w h ic h ru n d ir e c tly in to o n e a n o th e r w it h o u t a b re a k . Y e t th e re is fa r less sense o f c o n s tric tio n h ere. T h e c le a r d e lin e a tio n o f th o se fin e fe atu res at o n c e resto re s th e m to th e ir d o m in a n t ro le in th e p o rtra it as a w h o le . O u r lit e r a r y so u rce s are v e r y c o m p li­ m e n t a r y a b o u t C o n s t a n t in e ’ s g o o d lo o k s. In this ty p e o f re p re s e n ta tio n o n e feels th a t th e artists w h o in te rp re te d h im c o m e clo sest to c a tc h in g h is tru e lik en e ss. T h e a rc h e d n o se , th e fa m o u s ‘ le o n in e ’ g a ze , th e s e re n ity o f e x p re ss io n - all a re s u p e rb ly c a u g h t h ere . T h e d ie -c u t te r lin g e rs l o v in g l y o v e r th o se s u p p le lip s, o r th e d e lic a te s u g g e s tio n o f th e e y e , w h e r e a rc h in g b r o w a n d h e a v y , h a lf-c lo s e d e y e lid c o m b in e to h e ig h te n th e im p re ss io n o f p e n e tra tin g s c ru tin y .

93

C O N S T A N T IN E I

(a d

306 - 3 7 )

O bv. Portrait o f Constantine, facin g r., w earin g diadem . R e v . C O N S T A N T I N V S A V G . V ic to ry advan cin g 1., w ith palm and cro w n . In the ex e rg u e the letters SM A N .

N ap les, M us. N az. Fiorelli 139 5 5 . Siliqua. Cohen 96 (variant).

C o n s t a n t in e I ce le b ra te d h is decennalia in 3 1 5 ; his vicennalia h e c e le b ra te d tw ic e , firs t in 3 2 5 , in th e E ast, a n d th en a g a in in R o m e , d u r in g J u l y 32 6 . F u r th e r m o r e , h e s u r v iv e d to c e le b ra te h is tricennalia - a ra re e v e n t in d e e d fo r th e E m p e r o r s o f th is p e rio d . T h is w a s in 3 3 5 , a n d h e d ie d t w o y e a rs la te r, o n 2 2 M a y , 3 3 7 , in th e v ic in it y o f N ic o m e d ia . F r o m th e tim e o f h is vicennalia C o n s t a n t in e ’ s p o r tr a it a ssu m ed th e d ia d e m a n d th e a ttitu d e o f p r a y e r . T h u s w e can p lo t in a n o th e r sta g e in th e d e v e lo p m e n t o f h is ic o n o g r a p h y - w h ic h it is p o ssib le to f o llo w , th r o u g h th e m e d iu m o f co in s, fo r a p e r io d o f t h ir ty - o n e y e a rs. T h e e a r ly p o r tr a it r e p ro d u c e d o n th e p r e v io u s p la te b e g in s a series w h ic h , little b y little , in tro d u c e s a w h o le list o f ic o n o g r a p h ic in n o v a tio n s . F irst an d fo r e m o s t w e s h o u ld n o te th e d isa p p e a ra n c e o f th e b e a rd . C o n s t a n t in e is th e first e m p e r o r to a p p e a r c le a n -s h a v e n since T r a ja n , and he m a y w e ll h a v e b ee n m a k in g a d e lib e ra te and p o litic g e stu re in th e d ire c tio n o f his d ista n t b u t illu strio u s p re d ec esso r. H is lik en e ss u n d e rg o e s a g e n e ra l p ro c e ss o f id e a liz a ­ tio n , in w h ic h p e o p le h a v e p ro fe sse d to fin d d etails v a r io u s ly in sp ire d b y p o rtra its o f A u g u s tu s , T r a ja n , o r e v e n A le x a n d e r . In d iv id u a l fe atu res d isa p p e a r in this n e w a b stra c t p h y s io g n o m y , w h ic h p re se rv e s o n ly o n e re a listic e le m e n t - th e a q u ilin e n ose. T h e p re se n t e x a m p le , s tru c k b y th e A n t io c h m in t, d e m o n stra te s th e resu lt o f this p ro c e ss w it h s o m e

218

c la rity . T o b e g in w ith , the im a g e n o w o c c u p ie s the e n tire su rfa c e o f th e c o in , so th at th e re is n o r o o m f o r th e in sc rip tio n , a n d it has to g o o n th e re v e rse in stea d . T h e h a ir has lo st th e c o m p a c t q u a lity it possessed in p o rtra its m a d e u n d e r th e T e tra rc h s . It is n o w s h o w n in w h a t lo o k lik e th ree la r g e w a t e r w a v e s , h e ld in p la c e b y th at p re c io u s d ia d e m . T h is d o es n o t g iv e n it e v e n a r e m o t e ly n a tu ra l a p p e a ra n c e , e x c e p t at th e b a c k o f th e n e c k , w h e r e th e h a ir falls in a m ass o f lo o s e ly c u r lin g strands. T h e E m p e r o r ’ s p r o file , fr a m e d a g a in st th e arc o f th e ro u n d e l, is tu rn e d s lig h tly u p w a rd s . T h is is in a c c o rd a n c e w it h c u rre n t ic o n o g r a p h ic fa sh io n : th e id e a b e in g th at su ch a p o stu re e x p re sse d b o th th e pietas o f th e s o v e r e ig n a n d h is re la tio n sh ip w it h th e D iv in it y . T h is in te lle c tu a liz e d c o n c e p t h as p re se rv e d n o th in g o f C o n s t a n t in e ’ s a c tu a l fe a tu re s a p a rt fr o m th at g re a t n o se o f h is. T h e ro u n d , w id e - s ta r in g e y e w e n o w see n o lo n g e r e x p re sses an in d iv id u a l, m e r e ly th e id ea w h ic h h e e m b o d ie s.

94

C O N S T A N T IN E I (a d 306 - 3 7 )

O bv. H ead o f Constantine, w ith diadem , facin g r. R e v . C O N S T A N T I N V S A V G . V ic to ry advan cin g

1., w ith palm and cro w n . In the ex e rg u e the letters SM AN . N ap les, M us. N az . Fiorelli 139 5 5 . Siliqua.

Cohen 96 (variant). T h e V ic t o r y w h ic h fig u re s o n this c o in o f C o n ­ s ta n tin e ’ s is th e last e x a m p le o f th e g o d d e ss w e shall see in th e p re se n t v o lu m e . T h e n u m is m a tic tra d itio n lin k s h e r f ir m l y w it h th e E m p e r o r , o fte n e m p h a siz in g th e c o n n e c tio n th r o u g h th e in sc rip tio n Victoria A u g u sti, as th o u g h to c o n fir m th e fa c t th at th e V ic t o r y o f th e E m p ir e c a n n o t b e d isso c ia te d fr o m th e p e rso n o f th e E m p ir e ’ s ru le r - w h o is also its h ig h e st m ilit a r y a u th o rity . T h e rea so n w h y , e v e r y so o fte n , th ere h as b ee n s h o w n a re p re s e n ta tio n o f V ic t o r y - b e g in n in g w it h th e sea ted fig u r e o n th e T ib e r ia n q u in a riu s (P la te 5) a n d e n d in g w it h C o n s t a n t in e ’ s ro b u s t d e ity s h o w n o p p o s ite - is th a t th e v a ria tio n s o f s ty le b e t w e e n su cc e ssiv e v e rs io n s o f th e sa m e fig u r e (as o p p o s e d to c h a n g e s in su b je c t-m a tte r) d e m o n s tra te , q u ic k e r th an a n y t h in g else, th e n a tu re o f ea ch p e r io d ’ s in d iv id u a l tastes a n d fa sh io n s. C o n c e p t a n d a ttrib u te s, in this case p a lm - b ra n c h a n d c r o w n , re m a in id e n tic a l ; b u t it is fa sc in a tin g to s tu d y th e v a r io u s m e ta m o rp h o se s w h ic h th e g o d ­ dess u n d e rg o e s . O n l y in th e v e rs io n stru c k b y T ib e r iu s (s o m e th in g o f an e x c e p t io n all ro u n d ) is she s h o w n in an e s se n tia lly d iffe re n t p o se - seated o n a g lo b e , h o ld in g a d ia d e m in h e r h an d s. O n e v e r y o th e r o c c a s io n w e fin d h e r e re ct, n o w p o ise d o n h e r g lo b e (P la te 30 ), b o r n e u p b y th e b e a tin g o f h e r w in g s , n o w sta n d in g r e a d y to c r o w n th e E m p e r o r , as o n th e m e d a llio n o f A n to n in u s P iu s (P late 59), o r

220

else, as h e re , le a n in g o u t e m p h a tic a lly t o w a rd s th e le ft - th e fro n ta l p o s itio n o f th e le ft fo o t su g g ests th at she is n o t a c tu a lly m o v in g fo r w a r d . E v e n m o r e in te re stin g th a n th ese v a ria tio n s in th e d e sig n a re th e su cc essiv e m o d ific a tio n s o f sty le an d te ch n iq u e , w h ic h ra n g e fr o m a tra d itio n a l a n d m a n ­ n e re d e le g a n c e u n d e r N e r o to th e u n sh a c k le d fo r m a l e x p re ss io n ism fo u n d o n G a lb a ’ s aureu s, a n d b e y o n d th at a g a in to th e b a la n c e d , s y m m e tric a l c o m p o s itio n o f A n to n in u s P iu s ’ s m e d a llio n . T h e b r e a k - d o w n o f th re e -d im e n s io n a l fo r m su g g e ste d b y G a llie n u s ’ s au reu s g iv e s w a y , in tu rn , to th is V ic t o r y o f C o n ­ sta n tin e ’ s, w h ic h fr o m o n e p o in t o f v ie w , rep resen ts a re a c tio n a g a in st it. T h r o u g h th e v a ria tio n s h e re p re se n ted , m o r e o v e r , w e can d im ly fo re se e th o se ch a n g e s an d a d d itio n s (w h e th e r o f c o n te n t o r m e a n in g ) th at rep resen ta ­ tio n a l a rt w o u ld g iv e th e m in m o d e rn tim es. O n th e o n e h a n d w e h a v e V ic t o r y o n h e r g lo b e , tra n sm u te d in to th e im a g e o f ca p ric io u s F o r t u n e ; o n th e o th e r, v ia th e a ttrib u te s o f p a lm a n d c r o w n , w e rea ch th at a n g e lic fig u r e w h ic h , in C h ris t ia n ic o n o g r a p h y , s y m b o liz e s th e T r iu m p h o f F aith .

95

C O N ST A N S I

(a

d

333-50)

O bv. F L I V L C O N S T A N S P I V S F E L I X A V G . B ust o f C onstans, facing r., w ith Im perial breastplate, cloak and diadem , and the glob e o f V ic to ry in his 1. hand. R e v . V I C T O R I A A V G V S T I N O S T R I . Constans, fu lly arm ed, w ith spear and shield, cro w n ed b y V ic to ry , look s back o v e r his shoulder as he drags a prisoner along w ith his r. hand, b y the hair. B eh ind him a w o m an kneels in supplication. In the exergu e, helm et, q u iver and breastplate, flanked b y the letters A and Q . B erlin , Staatl. M us. 2 5 / 18 8 1. G o ld m edallion.

Gnecchi I, p. 12 , pi. X , 3 ; Toynbee, pi. X L V I I I , 8, p. 17 3 , no. 6 1 ; p. 17 4 , no. 80; p. 1 8 1 , no. 2 15 . O n th e d e ath o f C o n s t a n t in e th e G re a t , in 3 3 7 , his th re e sons - C o n s t a n t in e II, C o n sta n tiu s, an d C o n sta n s I - d iv id e d th e E m p ir e b e t w e e n th e m . C o n s t a n t in e w a s th e first to b e e lim in a te d , in 340 , n e a r A q u ile ia . T h e W e st e rn p r o v in c e s w h ic h h ad b e e n h is p o r tio n w e r e n o w a b s o rb e d b y C o n sta n s . H e a d d e d th e m to h is o w n te rrito rie s, w h ic h in c lu d e d Ita ly , A fr ic a , th e D a n u b ia n p ro v in c e s, a n d th e B a lk a n s. H is r e ig n c a m e to an en d a b o u t 3 5 0 , as th e resu lt o f a c o n s p ir a c y to w h ic h h e fe ll v ic t im . In c o n fo r m it y w it h th e c h a ra c te r o f th e tim e s, it h ad n o t - w h a t w it h r e v o lu t io n a r y in tr ig u e at h o m e an d in v a s io n o n the fro n tie rs - b ee n an e x a c t ly p e a c e fu l p e rio d . T h e la r g e g o ld m e d a llio n re p ro d u c e d h e re

222

(and k n o w n o n ly t h ro u g h th e sp e c im e n in the B e r lin M u s e u m ) , w it h th e E m p e r o r fu lly a rm e d an d d r a g g in g a p ris o n e r a lo n g b y th e h a ir, a llu d e s to the c a m p a ig n a g a in st th e S a rm a tia n s, a n d in p a rtic u la r to th e v ic t o r y w o n o v e r th e m in 3 3 8 . T h is re v e rse d e m o n stra te s, w it h im m e d ia te an d u n m is ta k a b le c la r ity , th e m a in fo r m a n d d ire c tio n w h ic h p o litic a l th o u g h t w a s n o w ta k in g . In th e fig u re s o f re p re se n ta tio n a l a rt such id eas fo u n d a s y m b o lic m e d iu m fo r th e ir e x p re ssio n . T h e m o t if o f th e m in u s c u le s u p p lia n t, o r th e E m p e r o r m a n ­ h a n d lin g a p ris o n e r, o r th e re la tiv e scale o f p r o p o r ­ tion s o b s e rv e d b e t w e e n o n e fig u r e a n d a n o th e r - all th ese fr o m n o w o n b e c o m e tr a g ic a lly ch a racteristic , n o t to s a y tra d itio n a l, e le m e n ts, in c o in -d e sig n as e ls e w h e re . B e h in d th e m lie th e c o n ce p ts, cu sto m s a n d p ro p a g a n d a b re d b y an e p o c h in w h ic h c ru e lty , v io le n c e a n d tre a c h e ry w e r e th e in e v it a b le c o n ­ co m ita n ts , n o t o n ly o f e v e r y a tte m p t to g a in p o w e r , b u t also o f its e x e rc is e o n c e g a in e d . Q u ite a p a rt fr o m its v a lu e as h isto ric a l e v id e n c e , h o w e v e r , this s p e c im e n is also , b e y o n d a n y d o u b t, h ig h ly ty p ic a l fr o m th e a esth etic v ie w p o in t . T h e a rtist h as o ffset h is cru d en e ss o f d e sig n b y t w o c o m p e n sa tin g q u a litie s. F irst, h e a c h ie v e s a ce rta in re p re se n ta tio n a l e le g a n c e b y his q u a s i-b a ro q u e d is­ trib u tio n o f c u r v ilin e a r m o t ifs : th e fo ld o f th e clo a k , th e sh ie ld ’ s c o n v e x su rfa ce , th e sin u o u s, u n d u la te p o stu re a ssu m e d b y th e c a p tiv e w o m a n . In th e seco n d p la c e , h e h as a g ift fo r fin e d e sc rip tiv e d etail, as can b e seen fr o m th e crest o f th e h e lm e t o r the d e c o ra tio n w h ic h a d o rn s th e sh ield . N o t e th at h e has, q u ite in c o n sis te n tly , m a d e th e sh ie ld ’ s ce n tra l boss v is ib le , in th e fo r m o f a c a r v e d lio n ’ s h ead . O n e p o in t o f in te re st o n th e o b v e rs e is th e w a y th e r ig h t a rm is s h ru n k a n d fo re s h o rte n e d , w it h a re m a r k a b le d is re g a rd fo r p e rsp e c tiv e .

96

M A G N E N T IU S ( a d

350- 53)

O bv. I M P C A E M A G N E N T I V S A V G . B u st o f M agnentius, facing r., bareheaded and w ith Im perial cloak. R ev. V I C T O R I A A V G L I B R O M A N O R . T h e E m p ero r stands facing r., in m ilitary un iform . W ith his r. hand he grasps an ensign on w hich are a flag and the ea g le; in his 1. hand he holds a laurel-branch. H is 1. foot is placed on the neck o f a prostrate prisoner ; to the left, A. In the ex e rg u e the letters R F S . N ap les, M us. N az. Fiorelli 146 57. B ronze.

P .B a stien , Le monnayage de Magnence (W etteren, B e l­ g iu m , 1964), p. 204, no. 427.

C o n s t a n s d ie d in 3 5 0 , in G a u l, at th e h an d s o f co n s p ira to rs. T h a t sam e y e a r F la v iu s M a g n u s M a g ­ n e n tiu s w a s p r o c la im e d E m p e r o r at A u t u n . M a g n e n ­ tiu s w a s b o r n s h o r tly a fte r 3 0 0 , in A m ie n s , a n d h ad seen a c tiv e s e rv ic e w it h th e R o m a n a r m y u n d e r C o n s t a n t in e a n d C o n sta n s . N o s o o n e r h a d h e b e e n ra ise d to th e p u r p le th a n h e fo u n d h im s e lf fo rc e d to d e fe n d h is th ro n e a g a in st u su rp e rs, b o th in R o m e it s e lf (this a tte m p t h e p u t d o w n w it h s a v a g e re ­ p risals) a n d in th e p r o v in c e s , w h e r e o n 1 M a r c h , 3 50, th e P a n n o n ia n le g io n s e le c te d V e tr a n io E m p e r o r . M a g n e n t iu s ’ s m o st serio u s se tb a c k , h o w e v e r , to o k p la c e at th e B a t t le o f M u rs a o n th e D r a v u s , in 3 5 1 , w h e n C o n sta n s d e fe a te d h im , h a v in g m o v e d a cro ss fr o m th e E a st w it h a v i e w to r e v e n g in g h is b ro th e r a n d w in n in g b a c k th e E m p ir e . In 3 5 3 , w it h n o fu rt h e r h o p e o f v ic t o r y to sustain h im , M a g n e n t iu s fu lfillin g th e tra g ic d e stin y th at b e fe ll so m a n y E m p e r o r s d u r in g th is p e r io d - c o m m itt e d su icid e at L y o n s . H is c o in a g e , s tru c k at v a r io u s m in ts, has b ee n th e su b je c t o f a re c e n t s tu d y b y P . B a s tie n , w h o d iv id e s it in to se v e n sep a rate ph ases. T h e e x a m p le re p ro d u c e d

224

h e re b e lo n g s to P h a se II, w h ic h d e v e lo p e d in R o m e b e t w e e n th e tim e o f its o c c u p a tio n b y M a g n e n t iu s ’ s fo llo w e r s in F e b r u a r y 3 5 0 , a n d M a r c h o f th e sam e y e a r. T h e co in -p o rt ra it s o f M a g n e n t iu s can b e b ra c k e te d w it h o u t d iffic u lty , as fa r as s ty listic co n sid e ra tio n s a re c o n c e rn e d , w it h th o se o f C o n sta n tin e th e G r e a t a n d h is son s w h ic h w e r e p ro d u c e d a b o u t th e sam e p e rio d . T h e y a re all c h a ra c te riz e d b y th at te n d e n c y to w a r d s t w o -d im e n s io n a l d e sig n w h ic h g r a d u a lly re p la ce s th e h ig h - r e lie f te c h n iq u e o f p re v io u s e p oc h s. N e v e rth e le s s , this lik en e ss o f M a g n e n t iu s is v e r y fa r fr o m ta k in g o n th e fo r m a l a b stra ct q u alitie s w h ic h w e fin d in th e p o rtra its o f th e L ic in ii. I f it has a n y affilia tio n s, t h e y a re w it h th e la te r, m o r e a c c e p ta b le ph ase o f p o rtra itu re u n d e r D io c le tia n . O n e ty p ic a l c o n t e m p o r a r y fe a tu re , h o w e v e r , is th e fo u r-s q u a re , o u tsiz e a p p ro a c h to this Im p e ria l p o rtra it, w h ic h o c c u p ie s n e a r ly th e w h o le su rfa ce o f th e c o in . R e c o g n iz a b ly life lik e to u ch e s can be d e te c te d in th e tre a tm e n t o f m o u th a n d ch in , a n d e s p e c ia lly in th a t s lig h tly fla b b y fu lln ess b e s to w e d o n th e flesh b e t w e e n fa ce a n d n e c k ; th e y g iv e this d ie a d is tin c tiv e in d iv id u a lit y all its o w n . T h e d e sig n o n th e r e v e rse , w it h th e la rg e r-th a n -life siz e fig u r e o f the E m p e r o r tr a m p lin g o n a p ro s tra te p riso n e r, is o n e o f th e sto c k scen es e m p lo y e d b y d ie -c u tte rs th r o u g h o u t this p e rio d .

97

V A L E N T IN IA N I (a d 364-75)

O bv. D N V A L E N T I N I A N V S P F A V G . B ust o f Valentinian I, facing r., w ith diadem and Im perial cloak R ev. V I C T O R I A A V G G . T h e E m p ero r and hi: brother Valens seated on the throne, full face, w ith a g lo b e ; behind and a bo ve them , V ic to ry spreads her w in gs. In the exergu e the letters T R O B C . N ap les, M us. N az. Fiorelli 14720 . Solidus.

R I C I X , p. 16, 1 7 (b).

O n th e d e ath o f J o v i a n ( 1 7 F e b r u a r y , 364) th e m a n c a lle d u p o n to su cc ee d h im as E m p e r o r w a s F la v iu s V a le n tin ia n u s , a n a t iv e o f P a n n o n ia , w h o h ad fo l­ lo w e d a m ilit a r y ca re e r, s e r v in g w it h g re a t d istin c­ tio n in th e G a llic a n d P e rs ia n c a m p a ig n s th at to o k p la c e d u r in g th e r e ig n o f Ju lia n th e A p o s ta te . O n a ss u m in g th e p u rp le h e n o m in a te d as A u g u s tu s , a n d his jo in t - r u le r , h is b ro th e r V a le n s, w h o w a s p la c e d in c h a rg e o f th e E a ste rn h a l f o f th e E m p ir e , a n d re m a in e d u n s w e r v in g ly lo y a l to h im . V a le n tin ia n re ta in e d p e rso n a l c o n tro l o f th e W e st, a n d in 3 6 7 e sta b lish ed h is Im p e ria l resid e n c e at T r e v ir i ( T rè v e s ) , a m o v e w h ic h r e v iv e d th e life o f th is q u ie t little t o w n , b esid es re -e s ta b lis h in g its m in t. T h e la tte r h a d lo st its im p o r ta n c e a fte r th e d e ath o f M a g n e n t iu s (3 5 3 ) an d ceased p r o d u c tio n a lt o g e th e r d u r in g J o v i a n ’ s re ig n . S ta rte d u p a g a in b y V a le n tin ia n so o n a fte r h is a cce ssio n , it f in a lly b e c a m e , fr o m 3 6 7 o n w a r d s , th e m o st im p o r ta n t W e ste rn m in t in e x is te n c e - so m u c h so th at v ir t u a lly all h ig h v a lu e c o in a g e o f th e p e r io d a p p ea rs to h a v e b e e n s tru c k th ere. T h e m in t-m a r k s e m p lo y e d o n th e g o ld c o in s, S M T R , T R O B a n d T R O B C (as o n th e p re se n t e x a m p le ) d e n o te su cc essive ph ases o f p r o d u c tio n d u r in g th o se y ea rs.

226

T h e d o m in a n t th e m e o f th e re v e rse -d e sig n s o n th ese issues is th e v a lo u r o f th e a r m y , c o u p le d w ith th e v ic t o r io u s re c o rd o f th e E m p e ro rs - a m o t i f su g ­ g e ste d , in all lik e lih o o d , b y th e d a n g e rs w h ic h (to j u d g e fr o m o u r lite r a r y sou rces) th rea te n ed th e E m p ir e ’ s fro n tie rs o n all sides. T h e p re se n t sp e c im e n b e lo n g s to a series th at e x te n d e d fr o m 3 6 7 till a fte r th e d e ath o f V a le n tin ia n . T h e re fe re n c e to Victoria A ugustorum p laces it in th is g e n e ra l c o n te x t o f id eas a c o n te x t w h ic h , m o r e o v e r , ap p lies g e n e r a lly to all n u m is m a tic p ro p a g a n d a th r o u g h o u t th e last ph ase o f th e E m p ir e , a n d in d e e d e a rlier. T h e d e sig n is n e a tly c e n tra liz e d in sid e th e o p e n c irc le fo r m e d b y th e in sc rip tio n , w it h V ic t o r y ’ s sp rea d w in g s c lo s in g th e c irc le . V a r io u s featu res in th is c o m p o s itio n - its s q u a re ly fro n ta l a rra n g e m e n t, its e m p h a tic s c h e m a tiz a tio n a n d c a re fu lly -b a la n c e d s y m m e t r y - a n tic ip a te th e ch a ra c te ristic d e sig n s an d m o tifs o f B y z a n t in e c o in a g e . B u t th ere is still a s tro n g em p h a sis o n th re e -d im e n s io n a l r e lie f v a lu es (n o te , fo r in stan c e, th o se b a re le g s a n d e g g -s h a p e d h ea d s, o r e v e n th e h a n d lin g o f th e d ra p erie s) w h ic h lin k s th is d ie to th e o ld W e ste rn tra d itio n . T h e r e is s o m e th in g v e r y c h a rm in g a b o u t th e sm a ll fig u r e o f V ic t o r y , h o v e r in g b e h in d th e th ro n e a n d e x t e n d in g h e r g re a t w in g s o v e r th e h ea d s o f th e t w o E m p e ro rs .

98

A R C A D IU S ( a d 395-408)

O bv. D N A R C A D I V S P F A V G . B u st o f Arcadius, facing r., w ith Im perial cloak and diadem . R ev. V I C T O R I A A V G G G . T h e E m p ero r standing, facing r., leaning on the labarum (Im perial standard) and cro w n ed b y V ic to ry , w h o stands on a glob e w hich he holds in his 1. hand. W ith his 1. foot he tram ples on a prostrate prisoner. In the field the letters M D . In the ex e rg u e the letters C O N O B . N ap les, M us. N az . Fiorelli 1 5 12 5 . Solidus.

R / C I X , p. 84, no 35(b ).

T h e E m p e r o r T h e o d o s iu s w a s jo in t - r u le r w it h G ra tia n fr o m 3 7 9 , a nd o n th e la t te r’ s d eath in 383 su c c e e d e d h im . H e h im s e lf d ie d at M ila n o n 1 7 J a n u a r y , 3 9 5 , w h e n little m o r e th an f ift y y e a rs o ld , o n ly a f e w m o n th s a fte r th e E m p ir e h a d at last b ee n p a c ifie d a n d re u n ite d u n d e r th e ru le o f a s in g le so v e r e ig n , a nd w h e n it see m e d th at R o m e c o u ld lo o k fo r w a r d to a lo n g p e r io d o f p e a c e a n d p ro s p e rit y . T h e o d o s iu s h a d asso cia ted h is t w o y o u n g son s w it h h im s e lf in th e m a s te ry o f th e E m p ir e , th us sta b iliz in g th e su ccessio n . T h e e ld e r, A rc a d iu s , w a s p r o c la im e d A u g u s tu s in 3 8 3 ; h is b r o th e r H o n o riu s w a s ra ise d to th e sa m e h o n o u r w h e n o n ly ten y ea rs o f a g e , s h o r tly b e fo r e T h e o d o s iu s ’ s d e ath . W h e n h e d ie d , th e su cc essio n w a s s e c u re ly e n ta ile d o n h is t w o so n s; A rc a d iu s h ad th e E ast, w it h his ca p ita l at C o n s t a n t in o p le , w h ile R o m e a n d th e W e st fe ll to th e a d o le sc e n t H o n o r iu s . T o b e g in w it h th e e m p ir e p re s e rv e d at least th e fo r m a l a p p e a ra n c e o f u n it y (e .g . b o th E a st a n d W e st o b s e r v e d th e sam e c o n s u la r y e a r) ; b u t th e d iv is io n b e t w e e n th e t w o h a lv e s w a s in te n sifie d b y C o u r t in trig u e s (the w e a k ­ ness o f th e t w o E m p e r o r s m a d e this a sta n d in g te m p ta tio n ) a n d s o o n b e c a m e d e ep a n d irre p a ra b le .

228

F r o m 3 9 5 , in fa ct, th e E m p ir e re m a in e d sp lit in t w o , a n d w a s n e v e r a g a in reu n ited . T h e fin e solid u s re p ro d u c e d h e re (w ith e n la rg e ­ m e n ts o f b o th o b v e rs e a n d re v e rse ), th o u g h stru c k in th e n a m e o f A rc a d iu s , a c tu a lly b e lo n g s to th e fin a l m o n th s o f T h e o d o s iu s ’ s jo i n t re ig n w it h his sons. It w a s issu ed fr o m th e m in t at M e d io la n u m (M ila n ), as w e ca n tell fr o m th e t w o letters M - D in th e fie ld . P e a rc e assign s it to b e t w e e n 6 S e p te m b e r, 39 4 , a n d 1 7 Ja n u a r y , 3 9 5 , th e d a te o f T h e o d o s iu s ’ s death . A r c a d iu s ’ s p o r tr a it s h o w s h im in th e fu ll sp le n ­ d o u r o f h is Im p e ria l re g a lia , his h ea d c r o w n e d w ith th e d ia d e m ( t w o r o w s o f p e arls an d a ce n tra l m e d a l­ lio n ), h is m a n tle fa sten ed w it h a g re a t fib u la : it is in e x a c t a c c o rd w it h th e a rtistic fa sh io n s o f th e d a y . W e m a y n o te th at h is y o u th fu l a n d b ea rd less fa ce h as b e e n g r e a t ly e lo n g a te d , a tra d itio n a lre a d y esta b lish ed in p o rtra its o f C o n s t a n t in e ’ s sons. T h e e y e is d r a w n fu ll-fa c e , a n d th e e n tire p r o file has a q u a s i-im p e rso n a l to n e , a ch a ra c te ristic w h ic h fr o m n o w o n b e c o m e s s te a d ily m o re w id e s p re a d an d e x a g g e r a te d .

99

A R C A D IU S (a d 395-408)

O bv. D N A R C A D I V S P F A V G . B ust o f Arcadius, facin g r., w ith Im perial cloak and diadem . R e v. V I C T O R I A A V G G G . T h e E m p ero r standing, facin g r., leaning on the labarum (Im perial standard) and cro w n ed b y V ic to ry , w h o stands on a glob e w h ich he holds in his 1. hand. W ith his 1. fo o t he tram ples on a prostrate prisoner. In the field the letters M D . In the ex e rg u e the letters C O N O B . N ap les, M us. N az. Fiorelli 1 5 1 2 5 . Solidus.

R I C I X , p. 84, no. 3 5 (b). T h e p re se n c e o f T h e o d o s iu s in M ila n (w h e re , as m e n tio n e d , h e d ie d , o n 1 7 J a n u a r y , 39 5) w a s res­ p o n sib le fo r th is m in t b e in g ch o se n to s trik e th e issue w e are e x a m in in g - o n e d e sig n e d to m e e t th e e x p e n se s o f C o u r t an d a r m y . T h e scen e o n th e re v e rse , re p ro d u c e d o p p o s ite , e m b o d ie s a d e sig n an d in sc rip tio n b o th o f w h ic h a re v e r y w e ll k n o w n fr o m th is p e rio d . It s h o w s th e E m p e r o r , a rm e d , tr a m p lin g d o w n his p ro stra te a d v e r s a r y ; an d th e sense o f p o w e r w h ic h th e scen e c o n v e y s is r e in fo r c e d b y th e le g e n d Victoria A u g g g , sin c e th is c o m m e m o r a te s th e E m p e r o r ’ s triu m p h . In th e p re se n t case it is n o t so m u c h a sso cia ted w it h o n e ru le r as w it h th e w h o le d y n a s tic c o m p le x o f T h e o d o s iu s a n d his son s, h e re s p e c ific a lly A rc a d iu s , w h e r e p o w e r w a s at th at tim e c o n c e n tra te d - a p o in t c o n fir m e d b y th e use o f th e p lu ra l in th e in sc rip tio n . A s a lr e a d y n o te d , this scen e is n o t u n c o m m o n in th e t y p o l o g y o f th e p e rio d u n d e r d iscu ssio n . T r o u b le w a s w id e s p r e a d ; th e d e fe n c e o f th e fro n tie rs a n d d y n a s tic s tru g g le s p ro d u c e d , b e t w e e n th e m , a state o f a lm o s t c o n tin u o u s w a r fa r e . T h e r e w a s an u r g e to c o u n te r su ch a ll-to o -r e a l w o r r ie s b y an a b stra ct, triu m p h a n t e m p h a sis o n g e n e ra liz e d scen es o f v ic t o r y . W h e t h e r th e scenes o n th ese co in s re fe r to

230

th e E m p e r o r o r th e S ta te , th e a r m y o r th e p ro v in c e s, th e ir d o m in a n t fe a tu re re m a in s th e co n c e p t o f Im p e ria l p o w e r , fo c u se d a n d c o n c e n tra te d o n th e f ig u r e o f th e s o v e r e ig n in p e rso n . T h is ex p re sses it s e lf in a w h o le series o f re v e rse -ty p e s, to g e th e r w it h en dless v a ria n t V ic to r ie s an d c o m m e m o r a t iv e issues. D e sp ite th e fa c t th a t it is s lig h tly w o r n , th e p re se n t sp e c im e n also g iv e s us a m p le o p p o r t u n it y to assess th e s ty le a n d tre a tm e n t a d o p te d b y th e artist res­ p o n sib le fo r it. Its d e sig n m a y b e la c k in g in o r ig in a l­ it y , b u t fr o m th e fo r m a l v ie w p o in t it p re se rv e s its o w n d ig n it y a n d sense o f co h e sio n . W e fin d h e re th o u g h in less p ro n o u n c e d fo r m th an o n th e m e d a l­ lio n o f C o n sta n s I (P late 95) - th e sam e scale o f p r o p o r tio n a l d im e n sio n s a p p lie d , w h ic h la y s d o w n th at e n e m ies shall b e d r a w n s m a lle r th an lifesize, a n d th e E m p e r o r a g o o d d eal la rg e r. A n o th e r in te re s tin g p o in t is th e re p re se n ta tio n o f V ic t o r y ; she, to o , has b e c o m e a m e re d w a r f in re la tio n to th e E m p e r o r , a n d h e r d iv in e d ig n it y in s e lf-e v id e n tly d im in ish e d b y th e ra d ia n t sp le n d o u r o f h is Im p e ria l p o w e r . E v e n in fo r m a l te rm s th e d ie -c u tte r sh o w s his la c k o f in te rest in h er : she has b e e n re d u c e d to a d e c o r a t iv e e le m e n t, a b a r e ly p e r fu n c t o r y sk etch .

SELECT B IB L IO G R A P H Y

Abbreviations for works cited in the text Alföldi A T T I DEL C IN Bernhart BM C Cohen Daremberg-Saglio Eckel Fioretti Gnecchi Gnocchi R IN Grant Head, Hist. Num. Kraay Lange Mattingly Maurice NC NZ Panvini Rosati R IC R IN Strack Toynbee 232

Alföldi, M. R. Die Constantinisehe Goldprägung. Magenza 1963. Atti del Congresso Internazionale di Numismatica. Bernhart, M. Handbuch zur Münzkunde der römische Kaiserzeit. Halle 1926. Catalogue of Coins of the Roman Empire in the British Museum, I—VI. London 1923-62. Cohen, H. Description historique des Monnaies/rappees sous l’Empire Romain. 8 vols. Paris 1880-92. Reprinted London 1956. Daremberg and Saglio. Dictionnaire des Antiquitiées grecques et romaines. Eckel, G. I. Doctrina Nummorum veterum. Vienna 1792-98. Fiorelli, G. Catalogo del Museo Nazionale di Napoli, Medagliere - Monete romane. 2 vols. Naples 1870-71. Gnecchi, G. I medaglioni romani. 3 vols. Milan 1912. Gnecchi, G. Personificazioni allegoriche sulle monete imperiali, in Rivista Italiana di Numismatica, XVIII, 1905, pp. 363 ff. Grant, M. High Art of Portraiture of Roman Coins, in Horizon, September 1963, pp. 33 If. Head, B. V. Historia Numorum. Oxford 19 11. Reprinted London 1965. Kraay, C. M. The “ Aes” Coinage of Galba. American Numismatic Society Numismatic Notes and Monographs 33. New York 1954. Lange, K. Karakterköpfe der Weltgeschichte. Monaco 1949. Mattingly, H. Romain coins. London 1967. Maurice, J. Numismatique Constantinienne. 2 vols. Paris 1908-12. The Numismatic Chronicle. Wiener Numismatische Zeitschrift. Panvini Rosati, F. I tetrarchi, in Collizione Arte e Moneta 3. Rome 1961. Mattingly, H. and Sydenham, E. A. The Roman Imperial Coinage. London 1923-. Rivista Italiana di Numismatica. Strack, P. L. Untersuchungen zur römischen Reichsprägung des zweitenJahrhunderts. 3 vols. Stuttgart l 937Toynbee, J. M. C. Roman Medallions. American Numismatic Society Numismatic Studies 5. New York 1944.

Roman Numismatics - General J. Le portrait dans Vantiquité d’apres les monnaies. Paris 1942. R. A. G. and S u t h e r l a n d , C. H. V. Essays in Roman Coinage presented to Harold M attingly. Oxford 1956. G r a n t , M. Roman History from Coins. Cambridge 1958. — The World o f Rom e. London i960. R e g l i n g , K. D ie A ntike M ü n ze als Kunstwerk. Berlin 1924. S t e v e n s o n , S. W. A Dictionary oj Roman Coins. Reprinted London 1964. S u t h e r l a n d , C. H. V. A rt in Coinage. London 1955. T o y n b e e , J.M .C . Picture language in Roman art, in Essays in Roman Coinage presented to Harold M attingly edited by R. A. G. Carson and C. H. V. Sutherland. V e r m e u l e , C .C . Roman Numismatic Art, in The Numismatic Circular, London 1956, col. 475 If. B abelo n,

C ar so n ,

Roman Art - General E. The A rt o f Ancient Greece and Rome. London 1968. L ’Arte Romana. Milan 1961.

B e c a t t i,



R. II Maestro delle Imprese di Traiano, in Storicità dell’Arte Classica. 2nd ed., Milan 1950, pp. 209 ff. — Continuità Ellenistica nella Pittura di Età Medio-e Tardo-Romana, in Archeologie e Cultura. Milan and Naples 1961, pp. 360 ff. F r o v a , A. L ’ Arte di Roma e del Mondo Romano. Turin 1961. T o y n b e e , J.M .C . The A rt o f the Romans. London 1965. W h e e l e r , R. E. M. Roman A rt and Architecture. London 1964. B ia n c h i B a n d in e l l i,

233

INDEX OF TYPES

References are to Plate numbers Acclamatio, 48, $0 Adlocutio, 19, 26, 63 Adoption, 53 Africa, 85 Agrippina the Elder (wife of Germanicus and mother of Caligula), 7 Agrippina the Younger (sister of Caligula, mother o f Nero, and wife o f Claudius), 6, 10, 11, 16, 17, 18 Annona, 21 Antonia (mother o f Claudius), 15 Antoninus Pius, bareheaded, 55, 56 crowned by Victory, 59 laureate, 59, 60, 61 standing with globe, 60, 61 Arabia, 49 Arcadius, diademed, 98, 99 with labarum and captives, 98, 99 Armenia, 51 Augustus, bareheaded, 1, 2 in triumphal chariot, 2 laureate, 3 Baetyl (sacred stone) o f Emcsa, 74 British campaigns, 72 Caius and Lucius Caesar, 3 Caligula, laureate, 6 sacrificing, 8, 9 Camel, 49 Captives, 54, 72, 84, 95, 96, 98, 99 Caracalla, laureate, 70, 71, 72 with Septimius Severus and Geta, 70, 71 Cavalry exercises, 20 Ceres, 21, 33, 59 Charitable distributions, 42, 43, 45 Clasped hands, 75 Claudius, bareheaded, 12, 13 laureate, 10, 11, 14 Clunia, Hispania, 24 Commodus, laureate, 65 Concordia, 6, 79 Congiarius see Charitable distributions 234

Constans I, diademed, 95 with captives, 95 Constantia, 15 Constantine I, diademed, 93, 94 laureate, 92 Constantius I Chlorus, laureate, 87 Danube, 46 Decursio, 20 Diana, 58 Diocletian, laureate, 85 Domitian, laureate, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41 offering libations, 37 reading prayers, 41 sacrificing, 39, 40 Secular Games, 38, 39, 40, 41 with troops, 36 Drusilla (sister of Caligula), 6 Elagabalus, laureate, 74 Elephant quadriga, 18 Emesa, baetyl (sacred stone) of, 74 Emperor, addressing troops, 19, 26, 50, 63 clasping hands, 53 distributing largess, 42, 43, 45 greeting troops, 36 haranguing crowds, 48 in triumphal chariot, 2 on horseback, 84 raising subjugated peoples, 54 reading prayers, 41 sacrificing, 8, 9, 37, 39, 40, 70, 71 seated, 24, 59, 97 standing with globe, 60, 61, 89 victorious, 51, 95, 96, 98, 99 Faustina the Younger (daughter o f Antoninus Pius), 57» 58 Felicitas, 64 Fortuna, 6, 44 Full-face portraits, 90, 91 Gaius see Caligula Galba, addressing troops, 26 bareheaded, 25 laureate, 24, 26, 28, 29, 30

receiving the Palladium, 24 wearing corn-ear wreath, 27 Gallienus, laureate, 80 radiate, 81, 82 Geta (brother o f Caracalla), 70, 71 Gordian III, laureate, 76, 77, 78 Hadrian, bareheaded, 54 laureate, 53 raising up Judaea, 54 with Trajan, 53 Harbours, 22 Heliogabalus see Elagabalus Hellespont, crossing of, 77, 78 Hercules, 83, 86 Hispania, 24 Judaea, 54 Julia (sister o f Caligula), 6 Julia Domna (wife o f Septimius Severus), 68, 69 Jupiter, 73, 80, 90, 91 Laurel-wreath, 87: see also under individual Emperors Libertas, 12, 27, 28 Licinius I, bareheaded, full-face, 90 diademed, 89 Licinius II, bareheaded, full-face, 91 Livia (wife o f Augustus), 25 Lucius Verus, bareheaded, 62 laureate, 63 with Marcus Aurelius, 63 Ludi Saeculares see Secular Games Macrinus, laureate, 73 Magnentius, bareheaded, 96 Marcus Aurelius, laureate, 64 with Lucius Verus, 63 Mars, 3 1 Matidia (Trajan’s niece), 52 Maximian, laureate, 86 Maximinus Daia, laureate, 88 Mesopotamia, 51 Minerva, 13, 37 Mule cart, 7 Musicians, 39, 40

Neptune, 32 Nero, addressing troops, 19 bareheaded, 16, 17, 18 laureate, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23 on horseback, 20 Nerva, distributing largess, 42, 43 laureate, 42, 43, 44 Oak-wreath, 16, 17 Opulence, 66 Ostia harbour, 22 Otacilia Severa (wife o f Philip I), 79 Palladium, received by Galba, 24 Pertinax, laureate, 66 Pietas, seated, 8, 9 standing, $2, 5$, $6 Postumus, radiate, 83 Praetorian camp, 14 Probus, radiate and armed, 84 Pupienus, radiate, 75 Quadriga, o f elephants, 18 o f horses, 2, 74 River-gods, 22, 46, 47 Rome, 92 Secular Games, 38, 39, 40, 41 Securitas, 6, 65 Septimius Severus, laureate, 67 with Caracalla and Geta, 70, 71 Ships, 22, 77, 78 Signis Receptis, 1 Soldiers, 14, 19, 20, 26, 63 Spes, 34, 35 Sun-god, 88 Temples and shrines, 8, 9, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 92 Tiber, 22 Tiberius, laureate, 4, 5 Titus, laureate, 33 Trajan, distributing largess, 45 haranguing crowds, 48 laureate, 45, 46, 48, 49, 50, 51 radiate, 47 Trireme, 77, 78

235

Triumphal arch, 2 Trophy o f arms, 72 Valentinian I, diademed, 97 with Valens, 97 Venus, 57, 68, 69 Vespasian, laureate, 31, 32

236

Victory, 23, 29, 30, 62, 67, 76, 81, 82, 93, 94 British campaigns, 72 seated on globe, 4, 5 with Emperor, 2, 59, 97, 98, 99 Water-supply, 47