Author Topic: Aurelian/Vabalathus  (Read 322 times)

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Offline Minimax88

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« on: November 12, 2017, 04:25:36 PM »
Is this coin from Aurelian or Vabalathus? I'm a bit confused. It is listed under Aurelian and also under Vabalathus. So it is the same?
If Vabalathus was secessionist why would he place Aurelianus bust on his coins?

IMP C AVRELIANVS AVG / H under emperor's bust


Minted in Antioch, RIC V 381

weight- 3.3g
diameter- 20 mm

Offline THCoins

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Re: Aurelian/Vabalathus
« Reply #1 on: November 12, 2017, 05:41:08 PM »
Nice specimen !
Valbalathus, with his mother Zenobia, was the de-factor ruler in the eastern part of the Roman empire. But his powerbase was not so firm that he would challenge the position of the Roman emperor Aurelianus.
So Vabalathus minted coins in his own name, but on these Aurelian is given the title of Augustus, signifying that Vabalathes aknowledged the suzerainity of Aurelianus.

Offline Finn235

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Re: Aurelian/Vabalathus
« Reply #2 on: November 14, 2017, 05:27:11 PM »
The Palmyrene Empire did not immediately rebel as Gaul had done under Postumus. Rome was too busy dealing with the Persians and the barbarians to care whether Syria was a province or a tributary kingdom, so Gallienus and Claudius II left well enough alone. The dual bust model had been used for many of Rome's client kings, perhaps most prominently the Abgar dynasty earlier in the third century:

For whatever reason, Zenobia felt emboldened enough to expand to Alexandria, which jeopardized Rome's food supply, forcing Aurelian into action. Vaballathus was a child, maybe 12-15 years old at the time, so he was only the figurehead for his mother's rule.

Superb example, by the way!