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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Themes & Provenance ▸ Gods, Non-Olympian ▸ SolView Options:  |  |  | 

Sol

Sol sometimes called Sol Invictus ("Unconquered Sun") was the solar deity in Ancient Roman religion. Worship of Sol began early but seems to have become more significant from the reign of Aurelian until the abolition of paganism under Theodosius I.


Severus Alexander, 13 March 222 - March 235 A.D.

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RS86634. Silver denarius, RIC IV 123, RSC III 448, BMCRE VI 950, Hunter III 68, SRCV II 7916, Choice EF, excellent portrait, attractive Sol, well centered and stuck, attractive toning, some very light marks and scratches, weight 2.377 g, maximum diameter 20.1 mm, die axis 0o, Rome mint, 234 A.D.; obverse IMP ALEXANDER PIVS AVG, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse P M TR P XIII COS III P P, Sol advancing left, radiate, nude but for chlamys over shoulders and left arm and flying behind, raising right hand commanding the sun to rise, whip in left hand; $140.00 (119.00)


Severus Alexander, 13 March 222 - March 235 A.D.

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Sol Invictus ("Unconquered Sun") was the sun god of the later Roman Empire and a patron of soldiers. In 274 the Roman emperor Aurelian made it an official cult alongside the traditional Roman cults. The god was favored by emperors after Aurelian and appeared on their coins until Constantine. The last inscription referring to Sol Invictus dates to 387 and there were enough devotees in the 5th century that Augustine found it necessary to preach against them. The date 25 December was selected for Christmas to replace the popular Roman festival Dies Natalis Solis Invicti, the "Birthday of the Unconquered Sun."
RB73721. Orichalcum sestertius, RIC IV 538d, BMCRE VI 593, Hunter III 154, SRCV II 8004, Cohen IV 449 var. (bust), Choice aVF, nice portrait, well centered, nice green patina with some smoothed red areas on the reverse, light corrosion, weight 21.746 g, maximum diameter 31.7 mm, die axis 0o, Rome mint, 234 A.D.; obverse IMP ALEXANDER PIVS AVG, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right, from the front; reverse P M TR P XIII COS III P P, Sol advancing left, radiate, nude but for chlamys over shoulders and left arm, raising right hand commanding the sun to rise, whip in left hand, S - C across field below center; $90.00 (76.50)


Constantine the Great, Early 307 - 22 May 337 A.D.

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The Latin word comiti, during imperial times, indicated a minister of the emperor. Even the two consuls where called "comites." The reverse legend therefore reads: "to the unconquered Sun, minister [of Constantine]."
RL86831. Billon follis, RIC VII Rome 136 (R2), SRCV IV 16103, Cohen VII 536, VF, well centered, dark patina, double struck, weight 2.838 g, maximum diameter 21.1 mm, die axis 180o, 3rd officina, Rome mint, 318 A.D.; obverse IMP CONSTANTINVS P F AVG, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse SOLI INVICTO COMITI (to the unconquered Sun, minister [of the Emperor]), Sol standing half-left, radiate, nude but for chlamys over shoulders and left arm, raising right hand commanding the sun to rise, globe in left hand, T in wreath left, RT in exergue; ex Beast Coins, ex FORVM (2010); very rare; $85.00 (72.25)


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

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Sol Invictus ("Unconquered Sun") was the sun god of the later Roman Empire and a patron of soldiers. In 274 the Roman emperor Aurelian made it an official cult alongside the traditional Roman cults. The god was favored by emperors after Aurelian and appeared on their coins until Constantine. The last inscription referring to Sol Invictus dates to 387 and there were enough devotees in the 5th century that Augustine found it necessary to preach against them. The date 25 December was selected for Christmas to replace the popular Roman festival Dies Natalis Solis Invicti, the "Birthday of the Unconquered Sun."
RS76202. Silver denarius, RIC IV 111, RSC IV 39, Choice VF, excellent portrait, well centered, toned, porous, light marks, weight 3.115 g, maximum diameter 20.4 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 1 Jan 241 - Jul 243 A.D.; obverse IMP GORDIANVS PIVS FEL AVG, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right, from behind; reverse AETERNITATI AVG, Sol standing slightly right, radiate head left, nude but for chlamys over shoulders and left arm, raising right hand commanding the sun to rise, globe in left hand; $80.00 (68.00)


Constantine the Great, Early 307 - 22 May 337 A.D.

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On May 21 the Orthodox Christian Church celebrates the "Feast of the Holy Great Sovereigns Constantine and Helen, Equal to the Apostles."
RT77400. Billon follis, Hunter V 182 (also 1st officina), RIC VII Rome 27, SRCV IV 16097, Cohen VII 536, Choice VF, silvering, clashed dies, weight 3.046 g, maximum diameter 21.3 mm, die axis 0o, 1st officina, Rome mint, 314 - 315 A.D.; obverse IMP CONSTANTINVS P F AVG, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse SOLI INVICTO COMITI (to the unconquered Sun, minister [of the Emperor]), Sol standing half left, radiate, nude but for chlamys over shoulders and left arm, raising right hand commanding the sun to rise, globe in left hand, R over X on left, F on right, R P in exergue; $80.00 (68.00)


Constantine the Great, Early 307 - 22 May 337 A.D.

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The Latin word comiti, during imperial times, indicated a minister of the emperor. Even the two consuls where called "comites." The reverse legend therefore reads: "to the unconquered Sun, minister [of Constantine]."
RL71417. Billon follis, Hunter V 186 (also 4th officina), RIC VII Rome 27, SRCV IV 16097, Cohen VII 536, Choice VF, perfect centering, Sol's head struck a bit flat, weight 3.181 g, maximum diameter 19.1 mm, die axis 180o, 4th officina, Rome mint, 314 - 315 A.D.; obverse IMP CONSTANTINVS P F AVG, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse SOLI INVICTO COMITI (to the unconquered Sun, minister [of the Emperor]), Sol standing half left, radiate, nude but for chlamys over shoulders and left arm, raising right hand commanding the sun to rise, extending globe in left hand, R over X left, F right, R Q in ANT in exergue; $75.00 (63.75)


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

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During Gordian's reign, the Roman Empire was threatened on multiple fronts. In 238, Goths from Ukraine crossed the Danube and devastated the Roman Empire up to the border with Anatolia. In 240, Africa revolted. Also in 240, Franks from northwest Germania raided the Rhine frontier. In 242, the cities of the Cimmerian Bosporus were evacuated because Goths controlled the territory.
RB65147. Bronze as, RIC IV 297b, Cohen V 44, SRCV III 8773, VF, well centered, weight 10.483 g, maximum diameter 24.4 mm, die axis 0o, Rome mint, 4th issue, 241 - 243 A.D.; obverse IMP GORDIANVS PIVS FEL AVG, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse AETERNITATI AVG, Sol standing slightly right, head left, radiate, nude but for chlamys over shoulders and left arm, raising right hand commanding the sun to rise, globe in left hand, S - C (senatus consulto) flanking across field; $60.00 (51.00)


Constantine the Great, Early 307 - 22 May 337 A.D.

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On 8 October 314, Constantine the Great defeated Licinius in the Battle of Cibalae, near Colonia Aurelia Cibalae (modern Vinkovci, Croatia). Licinius lost all of the Balkans except for Thrace and fled to Sirmium. Peace negotiations were initiated, but unsuccessful.
RL86258. Billon follis, Hunter V 180 (also 2nd officina), RIC VII Rome 19, SRCV IV 16096, Cohen VII 536, VF, well centered, some silvering, weak centers, scratches, some porosity, tiny encrustations, weight 3.103 g, maximum diameter 20.6 mm, die axis 0o, 2nd officina, Rome mint, 314 A.D.; obverse IMP CONSTANTINVS P F AVG, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse SOLI INVICTO COMITI (to the unconquered Sun, minister [of the Emperor]), Sol standing slightly left, radiate, nude but for chlamys over shoulders and left arm, raising right hand commanding the sun to rise, globe in left hand, R - F flanking at sides, R*S in exergue; $45.00 (38.25)


Gallic Empire, Postumus, Summer 260 - Spring 269 A.D.

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Oriens is Latin for "east." Literally, it means "rising" from orior, "rise." The use of the word for "rising" to refer to the east (where the sun rises) has analogs from many languages: compare the terms "Levant" (French levant "rising"), "Anatolia" (Greek anatole), "mizrahi" in Hebrew (from "zriha" meaning sunrise), "sharq" in Arabic, and others. The Chinese pictograph for east is based on the sun rising behind a tree and "The Land of the Rising Sun" to refers to Japan. Also, many ancient temples, including the Jewish Temple in Jerusalem, were built with their main entrances facing the East. To situate them in such a manner was to "orient" them in the proper direction. When something is facing the correct direction, it is said to have the proper "orientation."
RS64646. Billon antoninianus, RIC V-2 316, RIC IV 213d, Elmer 568, Cunetio 2454, Schulzki AGK 49, SRCV III 10964, Hunter 96 var. (no P), VF, nice portrait, well centered, toned, some silvering, edge cracks, die wear, weight 2.733 g, maximum diameter 21.1 mm, die axis 180o, 1st officina, Lugdunum (Lyon, France) mint, 267 - 268 A.D.; obverse IMP C POSTVMVS P F AVG, radiate, draped, and cuirassed bust right, from front; reverse ORIENS AVG (the rising sun of the Emperor), Sol advancing left, radiate, nude but for chlamys over shoulders and left arm, raising right hand commanding sunrise, whip in left hand, P left; $36.00 (30.60)


Gallic Empire, Postumus, Summer 260 - Spring 269 A.D.

Click for a larger photo
Oriens is Latin for "east." Literally, it means "rising" from orior, "rise." The use of the word for "rising" to refer to the east (where the sun rises) has analogs from many languages: compare the terms "Levant" (French levant "rising"), "Anatolia" (Greek anatole), "mizrahi" in Hebrew (from "zriha" meaning sunrise), "sharq" in Arabic, and others. The Chinese pictograph for east is based on the sun rising behind a tree and "The Land of the Rising Sun" to refers to Japan. Also, many ancient temples, including the Jewish Temple in Jerusalem, were built with their main entrances facing the East. To situate them in such a manner was to "orient" them in the proper direction. When something is facing the correct direction, it is said to have the proper "orientation."
RS64684. Billon antoninianus, RIC V-2 316, RIC IV 213d, Elmer 568, Cunetio 2454, Schulzki AGK 49, SRCV III 10964, Hunter 96 var. (no P), VF/F, well centered, some silvering, die wear, weight 3.404 g, maximum diameter 20.0 mm, die axis 180o, 1st officina, Lugdunum (Lyon, France) mint, 267 - 268 A.D.; obverse IMP C POSTVMVS P F AVG, radiate, draped, and cuirassed bust right, from front; reverse ORIENS AVG (the rising sun of the Emperor), Sol advancing left, radiate, nude but for chlamys over shoulders and left arm, raising right hand commanding sunrise, whip in left hand, P left; $34.00 (28.90)







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Catalog current as of Wednesday, November 21, 2018.
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