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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Themes & Provenance ▸ Types ▸ Happy DaysView Options:  |  |  | 

FELicium TEMPorum REPARATIO

The reverse legend FEL TEMP REPARATIO was used on coins from the time of Constans and Constantius II to that of Gratian (337 to 375). Although the intended reading of this legend is not completely certain, it most likely reads, FELicium TEMPorum REPARATIO, meaning "re-establishment of the happy times." We prefer to loosely translate it to the more current and lyrical expression, "Happy Days are Here Again!" From the coins below, it seems the Romans had a very different concept of what made for happy times.


Procopius, 28 September 365 - 27 May 366 A.D.

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According to Zosimus, Julian gave Procopius an imperial robe, informing him of his intent to make him his successor. But Julian did not tell anyone of this intent and Jovian was acclaimed emperor. Procopius gave Jovian the robe. He told Jovian of Julian's intention but asked the new Emperor to allow him to retire to private life. Jovian accepted and Procopius and his family retired to Caesarea Mazaca.
RL79986. Bronze centenionalis, LRBC II 2081, RIC IX 17a, Cohen VIII 8, SRCV V 19883, gVF, excellent portrait, nice green patina, edge chip, weight 2.661 g, maximum diameter 21.4 mm, die axis 0o, 3rd officina, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, 28 Sep 365 - Apr 366 A.D.; obverse D N PROCO-PIVS P F AVG, pearl-diademed, draped, and cuirassed bust left; reverse REPARATIO FEL TEMP (happy times restored), Procopius standing facing, head right, labarum in right hand, resting left hand on grounded shield, object on ground to left, Christogram above right, CONSΓ in exergue; rare; $120.00 (Ä102.00)


Constans, 9 September 337 - 19 January 350 A.D.

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The Roman historian Eutropius says Constans "indulged in great vices," in reference to his homosexuality, and Aurelius Victor stated that Constans had a reputation for scandalous behavior with "handsome barbarian hostages." Nevertheless, Constans did sponsor a decree alongside Constantius II that ruled that marriage based on "unnatural" sex should be punished meticulously. However, the decree may have only outlawed homosexual marriage. It may also be that Constans was not expressing his own feeling when promulgating the legislation but was rather trying to placate public outrage at his own perceived indecencies.
RL77064. Billon heavy maiorina, RIC VIII Thessalonica 122, LRBC II 1649, SRCV V 18675, Cohen VII 13, Hunter V 56 var. (3rd officina), VF, traces of silvering, well centered, some die wear, some light corrosion, weight 5.017 g, maximum diameter 23.0 mm, die axis 180o, 1st officina, Thessalonica (Salonika, Greece) mint, 348 - 350 A.D.; obverse D N CONSTANS P F AVG, pearl-diademed, draped, and cuirassed bust right, A behind; reverse FEL TEMP REPARATIO (happy times restored), Constans standing left on galley, Victory on globe in right hand, labarum (chi rho Christogram standard) in left, Victory seated in stern steering ship, A in left field, TSA in exergue; $70.00 (Ä59.50)


Constantius Gallus, Caesar, 28 September 351 - Winter 354 A.D.

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On 15 March 351 Constantius II elevated his 25-year-old cousin Constantius Gallus to Caesar at Sirmium in Pannonia. He arranged a marriage with his sister Constantia and put him in charge of the Eastern Roman Empire. Constantius II marched West with a large army (60,000 men) to fight against Magnus Magnentius.
RL85620. Billon maiorina, RIC VIII Aquileia 209, LRBC II 933, Voetter 5, SRCV V 19013, Cohen VIII 14, Hunter IV -, VF, nice green patina, light marks, earthen deposits, oval flan with remnant of flan casting sprue, weight 2.619 g, maximum diameter 19.4 mm, die axis 180o, 3rd officina, Aquileia mint, Sept 352 - winter 354 A.D.; obverse D N CONSTANTIVS IVN NOB C, bare-headed, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse FEL TEMP REPARATIO (happy times restored), soldier standing left, wearing helmet, military garb and shield on left arm, spearing fallen horseman, horseman extends arm toward soldier, shield at feet, II left, AQT exergue; $36.00 (Ä30.60)


Fel. Temp. Reparatio

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An article originally published in Numismatic Chronicle,1933, pp. 182-201, and plates xvii and xviii. Mattingly discusses his ideas about the various coins of the FEL TEMP REPARATIO series of the late 340s and early 350s.
BL43189. "Fel. Temp. Reparatio" by Harold Mattingly, Numismatic Chronicle reprint series, Attic Books 1977 reprint, paperback booklet, 5.5" x 8.5", 23 pages with 2 plates; $4.00 (Ä3.40)







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FEL TEMP REPARATION