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JM33240

Philip I, the Arab, Silver Antoninianus, Millennium Celebration.

Regular price £450
Regular price Sale price £450

Philip I, the Arab (AD 244-249), silver Antoninianus, marking the celebration of Rome's millennium, Rome, AD 248, IMP PHILIPPVS AVG, radiate bust right, rev. SAECVLARES AVGG, low column inscribed COS III, 3.53g, 7h (RIC 24c). Good extremely fine.

The Emperor Philip I was an ethnic Arab from present day Syria. The one thousandth anniversary of Rome's founding fell during his reign, between 247 and 248, and Philip celebrated the millennium with the SAECVLARES AVGG series. Games, sacrifices and theatrical performances were arranged - these events being the traditional way of marking the transition between important eras in ancient Rome. In this case the end of the first millennium and the start of the second. On the coinage, types include animals, presumably those exhibited during the celebrations; Romulus and Remus of course; a temple, perhaps acknowledging the religion of ancient Rome or even perhaps a subtle reference to Philip's own building program in his home city, by now renamed Philippopolis; and this low column. The column is a cippus, a milestone, and thus a metaphor still instantly recognisable in the modern world.

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