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Posted by / 18-Nov-2019 18:53

Locate the name and look for the all-important “N” which makes the difference between “CONSTANTINVS” and “CONSTANTIVS”.

Coins of Crispus and Constans are easier to pick out by counting the letters. After the death of Constantine his three remaining sons inherited the Empire.

After the fall of the Western Roman Empire, the Eastern Empire continued the Roman traditions for another 1,000 years.

Two types of coins from the Byzantines are often found in uncleaned lots; folles from the early Byzantine Empire and scyphate (cup-shaped) coins from the later Byzantine Empire.

The coins you will usually find in uncleaned lots from the Constantine era will usually be of this size, although you will occasionally find some of the FEL TEMP series of the larger variety, up to 23mm.

After Julian the coins become more unimaginative and, in general, smaller. The difficult part of identifying coins from this era is telling Valentinian from Valens from Valentinian II, and telling Valentinian I from Valentinian II.

_AGRIPPA* searches for all legends that have one letter then AGRIPPA followed by any number of letters.

Two types of coins from this era crop up; antoninianii and follii, the antoninianii being by far the more common.

While the antoninianus (double denarius) had been around since 214 AD the coins we are likely to find in these lots are the silver-coated bronze antoninianii of the late Empire.

Mostly these are from Aurelian, Probus, Gallienus and Claudius II.

Valentinian begat Valens, Gratian and Valentinian II. In the chart above I list which reverses are usually found on the coins of which Emperor.

It isn’t at all conclusive, but I hope it will help.

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Eighty percent of the coins you will come across fall into an identifiable set of Emperors and reverses and this guide is pointed toward helping identify those coins.

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