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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Greek Coins ▸ Geographic - All Periods ▸ Thrace & Moesia ▸ MarcianopolisView Options:  |  |  | 

Marcianopolis, Moesia Inferior

Renamed by Trajan after his sister, Ulpia Marciana, Marcianopolis was an important strategic center, part of Roman Thrace until c. 190, and then belonged to Moesia inferior. Marcianopolis' prosperity was ended by Gothic raids in 248 and 249, another in 267 or 268, and other barbarian invasions from the north. The city recovered and under Diocletian Marcianopolis became the center of the province Moesia Secunda of the Diocese of Thrace, and was thoroughly rebuilt in the late 3rd and early 4th century. During Valens' conflict with the Goths (366 - 369), Marcianopolis was a temporary capital of the empire and the largest city of Thrace. In 447, it was destroyed by the Huns under Attila, immediately after the bloody Battle of the Utus River. Justinian I restored and fortified it, but it was subject to regular barbarian attacks. An Avar raid finally destroyed it in 614 or 615.


Gordian III, 29 July 238 - 25 February 244 A.D., Marcianopolis, Moesia Inferior

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The Three Graces, named Euphrosyne, Aglaia and Thalia, were the attendants of Venus (Aphrodite). They are shown on Roman provincial coins as a statuary group, nude and sometimes holding apples.
RP84853. Bronze AE 21, H-J Marcianopolis 6.36.26.3 (same dies), Varbanov 1908, AMNG I -, SNG Cop -, SNG Munchen -, Mionnet -, Moushmov -, VF, dark green patina, porous, centration dimples, weight 4.432 g, maximum diameter 21.2 mm, die axis 0o, Marcianopolis (Devnya, Bulgaria) mint, 240/241 A.D.; obverse M ANT ΓOP∆IANOC AVT, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right from the front; reverse MAPKIANOΠOΛITΩN (the final N in exergue), The Three Graces standing, nude, the outer two facing, with heads turned outward and holding apples in outer hand, the middle with back facing and with arms around other two; ex CNG e-auction 225, lot 242; ex Mark Staal Collection of the Three Graces; ex Palladium, Sep 1997; rare; $135.00 (€120.15)
 


Septimius Severus, 9 April 193 - 4 February 211 A.D., Marcianopolis, Moesia Inferior

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The first of Herakles' twelve labors, set by King Eurystheus (his cousin), was to slay the Nemean lion and bring back its skin. It could not be killed with mortal weapons because its golden fur was impervious to attack. Its claws were sharper than swords and could cut through any armor. Herakles stunned the beast with his club and, using his immense strength, strangled it to death. During the fight, the lion bit off one of his fingers. After slaying the lion, he tried to skin it with a knife from his belt but failed. Wise Athena, noticing the hero's plight, told him to use one of the lion's own claws to skin the pelt.
RP84687. Bronze AE 20, H-J Marcianopolis 6.14.14.2 (R2), AMNG I/I 585, Moushmov 397, Varbanov I 732 (R3) var. (CEΠ), VF, dark sea-green patina, scratches, weight 5.161 g, maximum diameter 20.1 mm, die axis 225o, Markianopolis (Devnya, Bulgaria) mint, obverse AY K Λ CE - CEYHPOC, laureate head right; reverse MAPKIANO-ΠOΛITΩN, Herakles standing left, strangling the Nemean lion; $120.00 (€106.80)
 


Caracalla, 28 January 198 - 8 April 217 A.D., Marcianopolis, Moesia Inferior

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Renamed by Trajan after his sister, Ulpia Marciana, Marcianopolis was an important strategic center for centuries. The city was repeatedly destroyed by barbarian raids (Goths, Huns, Avars and others) but also was repeatedly rebuilt and prospered. During Valens' conflict with the Goths, Marcianopolis was a temporary capital of the empire and the largest city in Thrace. An Avar raid destroyed the city in 614 or 615.
RP67780. Bronze AE 23, H-J Marcianopolis 6.18.36.13, Varbanov I 905 (R3), AMNG I/I 631, SNG Cop -, VF, broad flan for the type, nice dark green patina, centration dimples, weight 6.801 g, maximum diameter 22.6 mm, die axis 45o, Markianopolis (Devnya, Bulgaria) mint, 119 - 217 A.D.; obverse AY K M AYP ANT−ΩNINOC Π AY−Γ (final Γ below the bust), laureate head right; reverse MAPKIANOΠΛITΩN (AP ligate), Homonoia standing slightly facing, head left, kalathos on head, sacrificing from patera in right over flaming altar at feet on left, cornucopia in right; $90.00 (€80.10)
 


Diadumenian, Mid May - 8 June 218 A.D., Marcianopolis, Moesia Inferior

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Diana is depicted here in the same pose as The Diana of Versailles, a slightly over life-size Roman marble statue from the 1st or 2nd century A.D., copying a lost Greek bronze original attributed to Leochares, c. 325 B.C. The sculpture may have come from a sanctuary at Nemi or possibly from Hadrian's Villa in Tivoli. In 1556, it was given by Pope Paul IV to Henry II of France, a subtle allusion to the king's mistress, Diane de Poitiers. It is now in the Musée du Louvre, Paris.
RP84156. Bronze triassarion, H-J Marcianopolis 6.25.13.2 (R3); Varbanov I 1311 (R3); AMNG I/I 787; BMC Thrace p. 33, 40; SNG Cop -, VF, grainy, large flan split/crack, centration dimples, weight 8.989 g, maximum diameter 24.1 mm, die axis 0o, Markianopolis (Devnya, Bulgaria) mint, 217 - 218 A.D.; obverse M K OΠEΛAION ANTΩNEINOC K, Bare headed, draped, and cuirassed bust right, from the front; reverse MAPKIANO-ΠOΛEITΩN, Artemis advancing right, bow in left hand, drawing arrow from quiver with right hand, hound at feet springing right on her far side, Γ (mark of value) behind; $90.00 (€80.10)
 


Gordian III, 29 July 238 - 25 February 244 A.D., Marcianopolis, Moesia Inferior

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Renamed by Trajan after his sister, Ulpia Marciana, Marcianopolis was an important strategic center for centuries. The city was repeatedly destroyed by barbarian raids (Goths, Huns, Avars and others) but also was repeatedly rebuilt and prospered. During Valens' conflict with the Goths, Marcianopolis was a temporary capital of the empire and the largest city in Thrace. An Avar raid destroyed the city in 614 or 615.
RP70504. Bronze pentassarion, H-J Marcianopolis 6.37.5.- var. (R6, obv legend, reverse legend arrangement), Varbanov I 1976 ff. var. (R3, same); SNG Cop -, BMC Thrace -, VF, scratches, flan cracks, centration dimples, weight 11.799 g, maximum diameter 28.5 mm, die axis 0o, Markianopolis (Devnya, Bulgaria) mint, consular legate Tullius Menophilus; obverse M ANTΩNIOX ΓOP∆IANOC AY, confronted busts of Gordian on left, laureate, draped, and cuirassed, seen from behind; and Serapis on right, draped, wearing kalathos on head; AYT K M below; reverse YΠ MHNOΦIΛOY MAPKIANOΠOΛ,I/T/Ω/N (last four letters in right field), Demeter standing facing, wearing kalathos, grain in right hand, long torch vertical behind in left hand, E in left; an unpublished variation of a scarce type; $60.00 (€53.40)
 


Click for a larger photo
Renamed by Trajan after his sister, Ulpia Marciana, Marcianopolis was an important strategic center for centuries. The city was repeatedly destroyed by barbarian raids (Goths, Huns, Avars and others) but also was repeatedly rebuilt and prospered. During Valens' conflict with the Goths, Marcianopolis was a temporary capital of the empire and the largest city in Thrace. An Avar raid destroyed the city in 614 or 615.
RP72568. Bronze AE 29, H-J Marcianopolis 6.14.36.18 (R2); AMNG I/I 580; Varbanov I, p. 118, 816 (R3); BMC Thrace p. 28, 5; Moushmov 385, F, tight flan, porous, weight 12.144 g, maximum diameter 28.5 mm, die axis 225o, Markianopolis (Devnya, Bulgaria) mint, magistrate Flavius Ulpianus, 210 - 211 A.D.; obverse AV K Λ CEΠ CEVHPOC, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right, from behind; reverse V ΦΛ O ΛΠIANOV MAPKIANOΠOΛITOΛI, Homonoia (Fortuna) standing facing, head left, kalathos on head, patera in right hand, cornucopia in left hand; $30.00 (€26.70)
 


The Local Coinage of the Roman Empire - Moesia Inferior, I - III c. A.D., Marcianopolis

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This catalogue introduces the coinage of Marcianopolis and also assists in identifying and evaluating the coins of the city. This catalogue identifies degrees of rarity from R1 to R10.
BK10064. The Local Coinage of the Roman Empire - Moesia Inferior, I - III c. A.D., Marcianopolis by Nina Hristova and Gospodin Jekov, in Bulgarian and English, 1st edition, 2 color plates, 248 pages, NOT the latest edition, worn ex Forum copy; $18.00 (€16.02)
 







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REFERENCES

Hristova, N. & G. Jekov. The Local Coinage of the Roman Empire - Moesia Inferior, I - III c. A.D., Marcianopolis. (Blagoevgrad, 2006).
Lindgren, H. Ancient Greek Bronze Coins: European Mints. (San Mateo, 1989).
Lindgren, H. Ancient Greek Bronze Coins. (Quarryville, 1993).
Moushmov, N. Ancient Coins of the Balkan Peninsula. (1912).
Pick, B. & K. Regling. Die antiken Münzen von Dacien und Moesien. AMNG I/I. (Berlin, 1898).
Poole, R.S. ed. A Catalog of the Greek Coins in the British Museum, Thrace, etc. (London, 1877).
Sear, D. Greek Coins and Their Values, Volume 1: Europe. (London, 1978).
Sear, D. Greek Imperial Coins and Their Values. (London, 1982).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, The Royal Collection of Coins and Medals, Danish National Museum, Vol. 2: Macedonia and Thrace. (West Milford, NJ, 1982).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Deutschland, München Staatlische Münzsammlung, Part 7: Taurische Chersones. Sarmatien. Dacia. Moesia superior. Moesia inferior. (Berlin, 1985).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Great Britain XII, The Hunterian Museum, University of Glasgow, Part 1: Roman Provincial Coins: Spain - Kingdoms of Asia Minor. (Oxford, 2004).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Hungary, Budapest, Magyar Nemzeti Múzeum, III: Moesia inferior. (Milan, 2000).
Varbanov, Ivan. Greek Imperial Coins And Their Values, Volume I: Dacia, Moesia Superior & Moesia Inferior. (Bourgas, Bulgaria, 2005).

Catalog current as of Tuesday, June 27, 2017.
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Marcianopolis