Authentic Ancient Coin of:
Tetricus I - Gallic Roman Emperor: 271-274 A.D. -
Bronze Antoninianus 22mm (3.34 grams) Struck 273 - 274 A.D.
Reference: RIC 80. Elmer 789. Cohen 57.
IMP TETRICVS P F AVG, radiate and cuirassed bust right
HILARITAS AVGG, Hilaritas standing left, holding long branch and cornucopia.
Hilaritas was the goddess of rejoicing and good humor.
You are buying the exact item pictured, provided with a Certificate of Authenticity and Lifetime Guarantee of Authenticity.
The cornucopia (from Latin cornu copiae) or horn of plenty is a symbol of abundance and nourishment, commonly a large horn-shaped container overflowing with produce, flowers, nuts, other edibles, or wealth in some form. Originating in classical antiquity, it has continued as a symbol in Western art, and it is particularly associated with the Thanksgiving holiday in North America.
Allegorical depiction of the Roman goddess Abundantia with a cornucopia, by Rubens (ca. 1630)
Mythology offers multiple explanations of the origin of the cornucopia. One of the best-known involves the birth and nurturance of the infant Zeus, who had to be hidden from his devouring father Cronus. In a cave on Mount Ida on the island of Crete, baby Zeus was cared for and protected by a number of divine attendants, including the goat Amalthea ("Nourishing Goddess"), who fed him with her milk. The suckling future king of the gods had unusual abilities and strength, and in playing with his nursemaid accidentally broke off one of her horns, which then had the divine power to provide unending nourishment, as the foster mother had to the god.
In another myth, the cornucopia was created when Heracles (Roman Hercules) wrestled with the river god Achelous and wrenched off one of his horns; river gods were sometimes depicted as horned. This version is represented in the Achelous and Hercules mural painting by the American Regionalist artist Thomas Hart Benton.
The cornucopia became the attribute of several Greek and Roman deities, particularly those associated with the harvest, prosperity, or spiritual abundance, such as personifications of Earth (Gaia or Terra); the child Plutus, god of riches and son of the grain goddess Demeter; the nymph Maia; and Fortuna, the goddess of luck, who had the power to grant prosperity. In Roman Imperial cult, abstract Roman deities who fostered peace (pax Romana) and prosperity were also depicted with a cornucopia, including Abundantia, "Abundance" personified, and Annona, goddess of the grain supply to the city of Rome. Pluto, the classical ruler of the underworld in the mystery religions, was a giver of agricultural, mineral and spiritual wealth, and in art often holds a cornucopia to distinguish him from the gloomier Hades, who holds a drinking horn instead.
In modern depictions, the cornucopia is typically a hollow, horn-shaped wicker basket filled with various kinds of festive fruit and vegetables. In North America, the cornucopia has come to be associated with Thanksgiving and the harvest. Cornucopia is also the name of the annual November Wine and Food celebration in Whistler, British Columbia, Canada. Two cornucopias are seen in the flag and state seal of Idaho. The Great Seal of North Carolina depicts Liberty standing and Plenty holding a cornucopia. The coat of arms of Colombia, Panama, Peru and Venezuela, and the Coat of Arms of the State of Victoria, Australia, also feature the cornucopia, symbolising prosperity.
The horn of plenty is used on body art and at Halloween, as it is a symbol of fertility, fortune and abundance.
Base of a statue of
Louis XV of France
Caius Pius Esuvius Tetricus was Emperor of the Gallic Empire (Imperium Galliarum) from 270/271 to 273, following the murder of Victorinus. Tetricus, who ruled with his son, Tetricus II, was the last of the Gallic emperors.
Tetricus was born to a noble family and held the administrative rank of praeses provinciae (provincial governor) of Aquitania at the time of Victorinus' death. Victorinus' mother, Victoria, paid the army heavily to declare Tetricus emperor near Burdigalia (Bordeaux, France), which was approved in Gaul and Britain. Following his appointment, Tetricus repelled Germanic tribes that took advantage of the confusion following the death of Victorinus to invade.
Tetricus installed his capital at Augusta Treverorum (present Trier, Germany, near the vital Rhine border, hence later seat of a Tetrarch) and appointed his son, Tetricus II, Caesar (273). Tetricus made no attempts to expand the Gallic Empire, other than southward, regaining Aquitania (which had rejoined the Roman empire during the reign of Claudius Gothicus). In late 273 or early 274, Faustinus, provincial governor of Gallia Belgica, rebelled against him in Augusta Treverorum.
In 273, Emperor Aurelian set out to reconquer the western Roman empire, following his victories in the east. Tetricus took his army southward from Trier to meet Aurelian, who was advancing into northern Gaul. The decisive battle took place near Châlons-sur-Marne, where Tetricus and his son surrendered to Aurelian.
According to literary sources, after being displayed as trophies at Aurelian's triumph in Rome, the lives of Tetricus and his son were spared by Aurelian, and Tetricus was even given the title of corrector Lucaniae et Bruttiorum, that is governor of a southern region of Italia. Tetricus died at an unknown date in Italy; he is listed as one of Rome's Thirty Tyrants in the Historia Augusta.
The Gallic Empire (Latin: Imperium Galliarum) is the modern name for a breakaway part of the Roman Empire that functioned de facto as a separate state from 260 to 274.It originated during the Crisis of the Third Century.
The Gallic Empire under Tetricus I by 271 A.D. (in green)
It was established by Postumus in 260 in the wake of barbarian invasions and instability in Rome, and at its height included the territories of Germania, Gaul, Britannia, and (for a time) Hispania. After Postumus' assassination in 268 it lost much of its territory, but continued under a number of emperors and usurpers. It was retaken by Roman emperor Aurelian after the Battle of Châlons in 274.
The Roman Crisis of the Third Century continued as Emperor Valerian was defeated and captured by the Sassanid Empire of Persia, leaving his son Gallienus in very shaky control. Shortly thereafter, the Palmyrene Empire, which came to encompass Egypt, Syria, Judea, and Arabia Petraea also broke away.
The governors in Pannonia staged unsuccessful local revolts. The Emperor left for the Danube to attend to their disruption. This left Postumus, who was governor of Germania Superior and Inferior, in charge at the Rhine border. An exeptional administrator, Postumus had also protected the Germania Inferior against an invasion led by the Franks in the summer of 260 very well. In fact, Postumus defeated the Frankish forces at Empel so decisively, that there would be no further Germanic raids for 10 years. This all would have combined to make Postumus one of the most powerful men in the west of the Roman empire.
The imperial heir Saloninus and the praetorian prefect Silvanus remained at Colonia Agrippina (Cologne), to keep the young heir out of danger and perhaps also as a check on Postumus' ambitions. Before long, however, Postumus besieged Colonia Agrippina and put the young heir and his guardian to death, making his revolt official. Postumus is thought to have established his capital at Cologne or Trier, with Lugdunum also becoming an important city in the empire.
The Gallic Empire had its own praetorian guard, two annually elected consuls (not all of whose names have survived) and probably its own senate. According to the numismatic evidence, Postumus himself held the office of consul five times.
Coin of Tetricus, last emperor (271–274) of the Gallic Empire
Postumus successfully fended off a military incursion by Gallienus in 263, and was never challenged by him again. However, in early 268 he was challenged by Laelianus, probably one of his commanders, who was declared emperor at Mogontiacum (Mainz) by his Legio XXII Primigenia. Postumus quickly retook Mogontiacum and Laelianus was killed. Postumus himself, however, was overthrown and killed by his own troops, reportedly because he did not allow them to sack the city.
After the death of Postumus, the Gallic Empire began to decline. Roman Emperor Claudius Gothicus re-established Roman authority in Gallia Narbonensis and parts of Gallia Aquitania, and there is some evidence that the provinces of Hispania, which did not recognize the subsequent Gallic Emperors, may have re-aligned with Rome then.
Marius was instated as Emperor upon Postumus' death, but died very shortly after; ancient sources writing much later state that he reigned only two days, though it is more likely, as displayed through the numismatic record, that he reigned for a few months. Subsequently Victorinus came to power, being recognized as Emperor in northern Gaul and Britannia, but not in Hispania. Victorinus spent most of his reign dealing with insurgencies and attempting to recover the Gaulish territories taken by Claudius Gothicus. He was assassinated in 271, but his mother Victoria took control of his troops and used her power to influence the selection of his successor. With Victoria's support, Tetricus was made Emperor, and was recognized in Britannia and the parts of Gaul still controlled by the Empire. Tetricus fought off Germanic barbarians who had begun ravaging Gaul after the death of Victorinus, and was able to re-take Gallia Aquitania and western Gallia Narbonensis while Roman Emperor Aurelian was engaging Queen Zenobia's Palmyrene Empire in the east. He established the imperial court at Trier, and in 273 he elevated his son, also named Tetricus, to the rank of Caesar. The following year the younger Tetricus was made co-consul, but the Empire grew weak from internal strife, including a mutiny led by the usurper Faustinus. By that time Aurelian had defeated the Palmyrene Empire and had made plans to re-conquer the west. He moved into Gaul and defeated Tetricus at the Battle of Châlons in 274; according to some sources, Tetricus offered to surrender in exchange for clemency for him and his son before the battle. This detail may be later propaganda, but either way, Aurelian was victorious, and the Gallic Empire was effectively dismantled.
The Gallic Empire was symptomatic of the fragmentation of power during the third-century crisis. It has also been taken to represent autonomous trends in the western provinces, including proto-feudalistic tendencies among the Gaulish land-owning class whose support has sometimes been thought to have underpinned the strength of the Gallic Empire, and an interplay between the strength of Roman institutions and the growing salience of provincial concerns. One of Postumus' primary objectives as emperor was evidently the defence of the Germanic frontier; in 261 he repelled mixed groups of Franks and Alamanni to hold the Rhine limes secure (though lands beyond the upper Rhine and Danube had to be abandoned to the barbarians within a couple of years). In so doing, Postumus positioned himself avowedly as not only the defender and restorer of Gaul, but also as the upholder of the Roman name.
The usurpation of power over Britain and northern Gaul by Carausius just twenty years later reflects a continuing trend by which local loyalties from the landed aristocracy and deteriorating morale in the legions enabled Carausius to seize power in Britain. Similarly with the withdrawal of legions after 408, many Britons desired a localized Roman authority rather than nationalist revolt. The desire for Roman order and institutions was entirely compatible with a degree of national or regional separatism.
The Gallic Emperors are known primarily from the coins they minted. The political and military history of the Gallic Empire can be sketched through the careers of these emperors. Their names are as follows:
(Laelianus 268, usurper)
(Domitianus 271? usurper)
Tetricus the elder 270–274
Tetricus the younger 270–274 (son of Tetricus; caesar)
Consuls of the Gallic Empire
Year Consul Consul
260 Postumus (second time) unknown
261 Postumus (third time)
265 Postumus (fourth time)
268 Postumus (fifth time) Victorinus (first time)
269 unknown unknown
270 Victorinus (second time) Sanctus
271 Tetricus (first time) unknown
272 Tetricus (second time)
273 Tetricus (third time)
Year and sequence unknown:
? Censor (twice) Lepidus (twice)
? Dialis Bassus
? "Apr." "Ruf."
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