Constans – 337-350 AD

Constans

As Caesar 317-337 AD
As Augustus 337-340 AD

Youngest son of Constantine the Great


Flavius Julius Constans was the youngest of the three sons of Constantine I and Fausta, and was born in A.D. 320 (or 323). Given the rank of Caesar in 333, he received Italy, Africa and Illyricum as his share of the imperial inheritance following his father’s death in 337. His victory over his eldest brother Constantine II in 340 gave him control over the entire Western half of the Empire. After reigning for a decade as the colleague of his brother Constantius II, Emperor in the East, he was unexpectedly overthrown in the revolt of Magnentius in January, 350. This handsome medallion, from the old imperial capital of Rome, depicts the brave young Emperor triumphing over his adversaries, one of whom, unfortunately, was to be his own brother.


Monetary System

Mints: Alexandria, Antioch, Arelate, Aquileia, Constantinople, Cyzicus, Heraclea, London, Lugdunum, Nicomedia, Rome, Siscia, Thessalonica, Treveri

Obverse Legends:

As Caesar

FL IVL CONSTANS NOB C
FL CONSTANS NOB CAES
FL IVL CONSTANS NOB CAES

As Augustus

CONSTANS AVGVSTVS
CONSTANS P F AVG
CONSTANS AVG
D N CONSTANS P F AVG


Monetary Reform

In 348 AD, Constans, along with his co-Emperor brother Constantius II, carried out a major reform of the bronze coinage system. The small drastically reduced follis (AE4) denomination was discontinued. A new series of bronze coins were introduced based upon a unit measuring 23mm in diameter known as the centenionalis. A half denomination was also introduced thus providing two bronze denominations. At first, the reform coinage typically bore the reverse inscription “FEL TEMP REPARATIO.”


DENOMINATIONS

As Caesar

AU Solidus (4.50 grams)
AR Miliarense (4.50 grams)
AR Siliqua (3.25 grams)
AE3/4

As Augustus

AU Solidus (4.50 grams)
AU Semissis (2.25 grams)
AU 1½ Scripulum (1.65 grams)
AR 3 Miliarense (13.50 grams)
AR Miliarense (4.50 grams)
AR Siliqua (3.25 grams)
AE4

Post-Reform Bronze

AE Centenionalis
AE ½ Centenionalis


Medallions

AR 4 Siliquae (13 grams)


Monetary History of the World
© Martin A. Armstrong