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Septimius Severus AE As

Scotvs Capitis

Septimius Severus (Augustus) AE As 21mm Ob: L SEPT SEV PERT - AVG IMP IIII - Laureate head right Rv: APOLLINI AVGVSTO - Apollo standing l. holding patera and lyre, between S - C Mint: Rome (195 AD) Ref: RIC 682 Notes: Feb 19, 07 - Attribution provided by Curtis Clay. Probably from the same dies as Glasgow 126 (not ill.), no. 385 in Curtis Clay's unpublished die catalogue. New Year's issue- The New Year's asses of Septimius in 194-6 and of Macrinus in 218 merely used the rev. types that were also current in the other denominations, and this seems to have been the rule from the reign of Commodus on. In 196 Septimius, apparently in connection with his anger at the Senate for supporting Clodius Albinus whom Septimius had defeated on 19 Feb. 196 (not 197 as the books all say!), cancelled the large annual New Year's issues of both medallions and asses. Such issues exist for 1 Jan. 194, 1 Jan. 195, and 1 Jan. 196, in fact they account for almost all of the asses produced by Septimius during those years; but from 1 Jan. 197 on the bronze medallions disappear almost entirely, and the large issues of asses at the beginning of each year disappear with them. Bronze medallions are almost or totally non-existent for the rest of Septimius' reign, and for the reigns of his successors Caracalla, Macrinus, and Elagabalus; only during the reign of Severus Alexander was a fairly regular production of bronze medallions resumed. There are several indications, however, that the issues of New Year's asses might have resumed 10-15 years earlier than that. Septimius died on 4 Feb. 211 in York, and Caracalla became P M and P P, Geta P P only, when the news of that event reached Rome. Yet there is a surprisingly large issue of asses of Septimius' last tribunician year TR P XIX, and Caracalla's corresponding TR P XIIII and Geta's TR P III without the P M and P P of their joint reign. Sestertii and dupondii with these dates, in contrast, are comparatively rare. The asses look rather like a New Year's issue for 1 Jan. 211. - Curtis Clay

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