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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Roman Coins ▸ Crisis and Decline ▸ Philip IIView Options:  |  |  | 

Philip II, July or August 247 - late 249 A.D.

Marcus Julius Philippus Severus (Philip II) was the son of the Philip the Arab by his wife Marcia Otacilia Severa. He was six years old when, in February or March 244, his father became emperor and he was made caesar. In 247, he was consul, and in July or August, he was elevated to Augustus and co-ruler. His father was killed in battle by his successor Decius in late 249. When news of this death reached Rome, Philip II was murdered by the Praetorian Guard. He died in his mother's arms, aged eleven years.


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In April 248, Philip combined the celebration of Rome's 1000th anniversary with the Ludi Saeculares. Festivities included spectacular games and theatrical presentations. In the Colosseum, more than 1,000 gladiators were killed along with hundreds of exotic animals including hippos, leopards, lions, giraffes, and one rhinoceros. At the same time, Philip elevated his son to the rank of co-Augustus. Undoubtedly the festivities included elephants, as advertised by this coin.
RS77602. Silver antoninianus, RSC IV 5, RIC IV 246A(a) (S) corr. (elephant right), Mazzini 5, Hunter III -, SRCV III -, Choice VF, well centered, porous, light scratches, weight 2.066 g, maximum diameter 22.0 mm, die axis 0o, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, 248 A.D.; obverse IMP M IVL PHILIPPVS AVG, radiate, draped, and cuirassed bust right, from front; reverse AETERNITAS AVGG, elephant walking left, ridden by mahout guiding it with rod and goad; scarce; $225.00 (€200.25)
 


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During Philip's reign, the 1000th anniversary of Rome (248 A.D.) was celebrated, and magnificent games were held. This coin was issued as part of that celebration and the reverse depicts one of the animals which was displayed during the games.

Traditionally the animal on this type has been described as "goat" - hardly exotic enough for the event - but it might actually be the northern European elk (similar to an American moose).
RS84960. Silver antoninianus, RIC IV 224, RSC IV 72, Hunter III 26, SRCV III 9275, VF, well centered and struck, light toning with some darker areas, light marks and scratches, weight 2.692 g, maximum diameter 22.2 mm, die axis 0o, Rome mint, 248 A.D.; obverse IMP PHILIPPVS AVG, radiate, draped, and cuirassed bust right, from behind; reverse SAECVLARES AVGG, elk walking left, III in exergue; $160.00 (€142.40)
 


Philip II, July or August 247 - Late 249 A.D., Cyrrhus, Cyrrhestica, Syria

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Cyrrhus was founded by Seleucus Nicator, one of Alexander the Great's generals, shortly after 300 B.C., and named for Cyrrhus in Macedonia. It was taken by the Armenian Empire in the 1st century B.C., then became Roman when Pompey took Syria in 64 B.C. By the 1st century A.D., it had become a Roman administrative, military, and commercial center on the trade route between Antioch and the Euphrates River crossing at Zeugma and minted its own coinage. It was the base of the Roman legion Legio X Fretensis. The Sassanid Persian Empire took it several times during the 3rd century. In the 6th century, the city was embellished and fortified by Justinian. It was taken by the Muslims in 637, the Crusaders in the 11th century, and Nur ad-Din Zangi recaptured it in 1150. Muslim travelers of the 13th and 14th century reported it as a large city and largely in ruins. Its ruins are located in northern Syria, near the Turkish border, about 70 km northwest of Aleppo and 24 km west of Kilis, Turkey.
RY84847. Bronze AE 29, Butcher 21c; BMC Galatia p. 137, 34; SNG Munchen 505; Price-Trell 673; SNG Cop 49 corr. (Philip I); SGICV 4143, aVF, porous, reverse a little off center, weight 15.867 g, maximum diameter 28.8 mm, die axis 0o, Cyrrhus mint, Jul/Aug 247 - late 249 A.D.; obverse AYTOK K M IOY IYΛ ΦIΛIΠΠOC CEB, laureate, cuirassed and draped bust to right, from behind; reverse ∆IOC - KA-TEB-ATOY, KYPHCTΩN, hexastyle temple Zeus Kataibates, in which statue of the god is seated facing with thunderbolt in right hand, scepter in left hand, eagle at his feet on left, bull leaping right above temple; $110.00 (€97.90)
 


Click for a larger photo
During Philip's reign the 1000th anniversary of Rome (248 A.D.) was celebrated, and magnificent games were held. This coin was issued as part of that celebration and the reverse depicts one of the animals which was displayed during the games. Traditionally this type has been described as "goat" - hardly exotic enough for the event - but it might actually be the northern European elk (similar to an American moose).
RB79786. Orichalcum sestertius, RIC IV 264a (S), Cohen V 73, Hunter III 34, SRCV III 9283, aVF, light corrosion, squared flan, weight 14.300 g, maximum diameter 28.0 mm, die axis 0o, Rome mint, 248 A.D.; obverse IMP M IVL PHILIPPVS AVG, radiate, draped, and cuirassed bust right, from behind; reverse SAECVLARES AVGG, elk walking left, S C (senatus consulto) in exergue; scarce; $95.00 (€84.55)
 


Philip II, July or August 247 - Late 249 A.D., Diocaesarea, Cilicia

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Diocaesarea, Cilicia was known as Olba until it was renamed during the reign of Vespasian. According to a legend told by Strabo (Geography, 14.5.10), the temple of Zeus Olbius was founded by Ajax, one of the Greek heroes of the Trojan War. The city and its surrounding territory was a theocracy, ruled by the hereditary priests of the temple.
RP57201. Bronze AE 29, SNG BnF 886, SNG Levante 678, SNG PfPS 423, Staffieri 27, BMC Lycaonia -, gF, weight 14.238 g, maximum diameter 29.0 mm, die axis 180o, Cilicia, Diocaesarea mint, as caesar, 244 - 246 A.D.; obverse M IOYΛIOC Φ[IΛIΠΠOYC K CE]B, bare-headed, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse A∆PIA ∆IOKAICAPEΩN MHT (MHT ligate), KENNATΩ in ex, thunderbolt on throne of Zeus Olbios, lions on arms; rare; $90.00 (€80.10)
 


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In 246, the first of the Two Councils of Arabia of the Roman Christian Church was held in Bostra, Arabia Petraea.
RB73727. Orichalcum sestertius, RIC IV 256a (S), Cohen V 49, Hunter III 14, SRCV III 9249, F, weight 15.938 g, maximum diameter 30.8 mm, die axis 0o, Rome mint, as caesar, 244 - 246 A.D.; obverse M IVL PHILIPPVS CAES, bare-headed, draped, and cuirassed bust right, from behind; reverse PRINCIPIA IVVENTVTIS (in honor of the Prince of Youth), Philip II standing left, bare-headed, in military dress, globe in right hand, inverted spear behind in left, S - C (senatus consulto) flanking across field below center; scarce; $90.00 (€80.10)
 


Philip II, July or August 247 - Late 249 A.D., Antiocheia, Pisidia

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Pisidia's geographic and strategic position made it difficult to maintain peace. To strengthen control, Rome colonized the area with military veterans, who were attracted to the area by the fertile soil. An important Roman colony, the city was, like Rome, divided into seven quarters called "vici" on seven hills. The formal language was Latin until the end of the 3rd century A.D.
RP78010. Bronze AE 27, Krzyzanowska I/3; SNG BnF 1273; BMC Lycia p. 197, 119; SNG Cop 79; SNGvA 4974, Choice F, well centered, porous, weight 10.254 g, maximum diameter 26.7 mm, die axis 180o, Antioch in Pisidia (Yalvac, Turkey) mint, Jul/Aug 247 - late 249 A.D.; obverse IMP M IVL PHILIPPVS P F AVG P M, radiate, draped, and cuirassed bust right, from behind; reverse CAES ANTIOCH COL, Pax advancing left, raising olive branch in right hand, scepter in left hand, wearing long chiton, S - R flanking across field; from the Butte College Foundation, ex Lindgren; rare; $90.00 (€80.10)
 


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Marcus Julius Philippus Severus, also known as Philippus II, Philip II and Philip the Younger was the son and heir of the Roman Emperor Philip the Arab by his wife Otacilia Severa. When his father became emperor in 244 he was appointed Caesar. He was made consul for 247 A.D. and later that year he was elevated by his father to the rank of Augustus and co-ruler. His father was killed in battle by his successor Decius in 249. When news of this death reached Rome, he was murdered by the Praetorian Guard. He died in his mother's arms, aged eleven years.
RS77746. Silver antoninianus, RIC IV 218d, RSC IV 48, Hunter V 8, SRCV III 9240, VF, toned, nice portrait, grainy small encrustations, weight 3.460 g, maximum diameter 23.8 mm, Rome mint, 244 - 246 A.D.; obverse M IVL PHILIPPVS CAES, radiate, draped, and cuirassed bust right, from behind; reverse PRINCIPI IVVENT (to the Prince of Youth), Philip II standing left, wearing military dress, globe in right hand, inverted spear in left hand; from the Butte College Foundation, ex Lindgren, ex Kirk Davis; $70.00 (€62.30)
 


Philip II, July or August 247 - Late 249 A.D., Cyrrhus, Cyrrhestica, Syria

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Cyrrhus was founded by Seleucus Nicator, one of Alexander the Great's generals, shortly after 300 B.C., and named for Cyrrhus in Macedonia. It was taken by the Armenian Empire in the 1st century B.C., then became Roman when Pompey took Syria in 64 B.C. By the 1st century A.D., it had become a Roman administrative, military, and commercial center on the trade route between Antioch and the Euphrates River crossing at Zeugma and minted its own coinage. It was the base of the Roman legion Legio X Fretensis. The Sassanid Persian Empire took it several times during the 3rd century. In the 6th century, the city was embellished and fortified by Justinian. It was taken by the Muslims in 637, the Crusaders in the 11th century, and Nur ad-Din Zangi recaptured it in 1150. Muslim travelers of the 13th and 14th century reported it as a large city and largely in ruins. Its ruins are located in northern Syria, near the Turkish border, about 70 km northwest of Aleppo and 24 km west of Kilis, Turkey.
GB73055. Bronze AE 28, Butcher 21c; BMC Galatia p. 137, 34; SNG Munchen 505; Price-Trell 673; SNG Cop 49 corr. (Philip I); SGICV 4143, aVF, well centered, rough green patina with reddish earthen highlighting, weight 14.440 g, maximum diameter 27.9 mm, die axis 135o, Cyrrhus mint, Jul/Aug 247 - late 249 A.D.; obverse AYTOK K M IOY IYΛ ΦIΛIΠΠOC CEB, laureate, cuirassed and draped bust to right, from behind; reverse ∆IOC - KA-TEB-ATOY, KYPHCTΩN, hexastyle temple Zeus Kataibates, in which statue of the god is seated facing with thunderbolt in right hand, scepter in left hand, eagle at his feet on left, bull leaping right above temple; $60.00 (€53.40)
 


Philip II, July or August 247 - Late 249 A.D., Perga, Pamphylia

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Perga was the capital of Pamphylia. Today it is a large site of ancient ruins, 15 kilometers (9.3 mi) east of Antalya on the southwestern Mediterranean coast of Turkey. During the Hellenistic period, Perga was one of the richest and most beautiful cities in the ancient world, famous for its temple of Artemis. It also is notable as the home of the renowned mathematician Apollonius of Perga.
RP72630. Bronze AE 23, cf. SNG BnF 522; SNG Cop 349; SNGvA 4707; BMC Lydia p. 133, 65; SNG PfPS 397 (slight legend variations), F, weight 6.122 g, maximum diameter 22.5 mm, die axis 0o, Perga mint, as caesar, Feb 244 - Jul/Aug 247 A.D.; obverse AY K M IOY CEOY ΦIΛIΠΠOC C[E?], laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right, from behind, globe below bust; reverse ΠEPΓAIΩN, Tyche standing left, wearing kalathos, chiton and peplos, rudder in right hand, cornucopia in left hand; scarce; $45.00 (€40.05)
 







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OBVERSE LEGENDS

MIVLPHILIPPVSCAES
MIVLPHILIPPVSNOBILCAES
IMPCAESMIVLPHILIPPVSAVG
IMPMIVLPHILIPPVSAVG
IMPPHILIPPVSAVG


REFERENCES

Banti, A. & L. Simonetti. Corpus Nummorum Romanorum. (Florence, 1972-1979).
Bland, R. "Dr. Bland's List for Philip I and Family" - http://ettuantiquities.com/Philip_1/Philip1-Bland-list.htm
Calicó, X. The Roman Avrei, vol. 2: From Didius Julianus to Constantius I, 193 AD - 335 AD. (Barcelona, 2003).
Cohen, H. Description historique des monnaies frappées sous l'Empire Romain, Vol. 5: Gordian I to Valerian II. (Paris, 1885).
Mattingly, H., E. Sydenham & C. Sutherland. The Roman Imperial Coinage, Vol IV, From Pertinax to Uranius Antoninus. (London, 1986).
Muona, J. "The Imperial mints of Philip the Arab" - http://www.forumancientcoins.com/Articles/Philip_Arab/index.html
Óvári, F. "Philippus antiochiai veretu antoninianusairól" in Numizmatikai Közlöny 88/89 (1989/90), pp. 41 - 48.
Robinson, A. Roman Imperial Coins in the Hunter Coin Cabinet, University of Glasgow, Vol. III. Pertinax to Aemilian. (Oxford, 1977).
Seaby, H. & D. Sear. Roman Silver Coins, Volume IV, Gordian III to Postumus. (London, 1982).
Sear, D. Roman Coins and Their Values III, The Accession of Maximinus I to the Death of Carinus AD 235 - AD 285. (London, 2005).
Thibaut, M. Antoniniani from the Mint of Antioch Under the Reign of Philip the Arab (244-249 AD) - http://marchal.thibaut.free.fr/e_index.htm
Vagi, D. Coinage and History of the Roman Empire. (Sidney, 1999).

Catalog current as of Friday, August 18, 2017.
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Roman Coins of Philip II