Dupondius Trajan Decius - Genius of Illyria
TRAJAN DECIUS. Æ As. Rome, 2nd officina, 6th emission, early 251 AD
Obv. IMP C M Q TRAIANVS DECIVS AVG radiate, draped, and cuirassed bust to right.
Rev. GENIVS EXERC ILLVRICIANI / S-C Genius, nude but for cloak, standing facing, head with polos turned l., holding cornucopiae in his l. hand, patera in his outstretched r. hand; to r., standard.
RIC 117d (S); Cohen 55
Despite the best efforts of Philip I, the problems that had erupted on the Danube early in his reign continued unresolved. His successor Decius hailed from a provincial family of good standing and had increased his social status by marrying a noble Etruscan lady, Herennia Etruscilla. Before becoming emperor, Decius had gained senatorial status, served as a governor in Spain and Moesia, and had been the city prefect in Rome. In addition to his earlier governorship in Moesia and his return to the Danubian front with a command under Philip I, Decius had been born at Budalia, a small city outside Sirmium, only a few miles from the Danube. Decius could rightly claim to be an Illyrian, for that region traditionally comprised Dalmatia and the two Pannonias. In the time of Decius, Illyria was extremely important as a recruiting ground for soldiers, and the commanders who hailed from the region came to be known as Illyriciani. The reverse of this coin demonstrates the focus of Decius' brief reign, both in an honorary and an historical sense.[NAC]