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193 A.D. - The Year of Five Emperors. On 1 January, the Senate selected Pertinax, against his will, to succeed the late Commodus as Emperor. The Praetorian Guard assassinated him on 28 March and auctioned the throne to the highest bidder, Didius Julianus, who offered 300 million sesterces. Outraged by the Praetorians, legions in Illyricum select Septimius Severus as emperor; in Britannia the legions select their governor Clodius Albinus, and in Syria the legions select their governor Pescennius Niger. On 1 June Septimius Severus entered the capital, put Julianus put to death and replaced the Praetorian Guard with his own troops. Clodius Albinus allied with Severus and accepted the title of Caesar. Pescennius Niger was defeated, killed and his head displayed in RomeSH86628. Orichalcumsestertius, RIC VI 14 (R), BMCRE V 20, Hunter III 8, Cohen III 3, Cayon III 1, SRCV II 6075, nice F, attractive portrait for grade, legends not fully struck, encrustations on reverse, edge crack, weight 19.044 g, maximum diameter 29.0 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 28 Mar - 2 Jun 193 A.D.; obverseIMP CAES M DID SEVER IVLIAN AVG, laureate head right; reverseCONCORD MILIT (harmony with the soldiers), Concordia Militum standing half left, head left, legionary aquila (eagle) standard in right hand, signumstandard in left hand, S - C (senatus consulto) flanking across field below center; rare; $870.00 (Ä739.50)
Pertinax, 31 December 192 - 28 March 193 A.D.
Pertinax was the son of a humble charcoal-burner. After a successful career in the military, as a senator and then as praefect of the city of Rome, he reluctantly accepted the throne offered by the murderers of Commodus. After a reign of only 86 day he was murdered by mutinous guards.
Opis was the wife of Saturn, and also his sister and the daughter of Caelus. Her children were Jupiter, Neptune, Pluto, Juno, Ceres, and Vesta. When Saturn learned of a prophecy that his and Opis' children would overthrow him as leader, he ate his children one by one after they were born. Opis, being the loving mother that she was, could not just stand by and let the last of her children be eaten by her husband. So, she wrapped a rock in swaddling clothes, and fed that to Saturn instead of Jupiter. Opis then went on to raise Jupiter, and then helped him free his siblings from their father's stomach. SH82706. Silver denarius, Bickford-Smith p. 54; cf. RSC III 33a; RIC IV 8a (R2); BMCRE V p. 4, 19 (Rome); Hunter III 6; SRCV II 6045 (all but Bickford-Smith, Rome mint), F, nice portrait, porous, legends weak, tight irregular flan, weight 2.508 g, maximum diameter 18.5 mm, die axis 180o, Alexandria mint, Jan - 28 Mar 193 A.D.; obverseIMP CAES P HELV PERTIN AVG, laureate head right; reverseOPI DIVIN TR P COS II, Ops (plenty) seated left on throne with ornamented back, two stalks of grain in right hand, leaning back on left hand resting on the edge of the seat behind; rare; $450.00 (Ä382.50)
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