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Roman Empire

Ruler: Septimius Severus
Reigned: 193 - 211 AD
Denomination: AR Denarius
Mint: Rome
Date of Issue: 207 AD
Obverse: Laureate head right. "SEVERVS PIVS AVG."
Reverse: Victory standing right, inscribing shield set on palm tree. "P.M. TR.P. XV. COS. III. P.P."
Reference: RSC 489, RCVM 6340, RIC 211
Weight: 3.1 gms
Diameter: 18.9 mm

SEVERUS (Lucius Septimius Severus)

  • Lucius Septimius Severus was born April 11th, 146, at Leptis Magna (near the modern Homs in Libya).
  • He was quaestor militaris in the province of Baetica in Spain in 172 and by 190 became governor of Pannonia.
  • When the emperor Commodus was murdered in 192, the Roman consul Publius Helvius Pertinax became emperor, but was murdered 86 days later.
  • Severus was acclaimed emperor by his troops and he set off to Rome with his armies.
  • Meanwhile, Didius Julianus "bought" the emperorship, but was soon seen off by the Praetorian Guard. Pescennius Niger, the governor of Syria, was also proclaimed emperor by his troops.
  • Severus offered Clodius Albinus, governor of Britain, the title of Caesar, to keep him quiet.
  • In 194 he defeated Pescennius Niger.
  • In 195, he had Albinus declared a public enemy and finally defeated him at a battle near Lugdunum (Lyons). February 19th 197.
  • After success against the Parthians who had invaded Mesopotamia, Severus sailed to Britain to put down a revolt there in 208.
  • Taking his elder son, Caracalla, with him, he made Eburacum (York) his base for fighting the troublesome Caledonian tribes.
  • He died on Febuary 4th 211 at York and was succeeded by his son, Caracalla.

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