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Constantine I


AR/AE Constantine I Follis 307-337 A.D. (19mm, 4.02 g, 12h). Sirmium mint. Struck AD 324-325 O: Laureate head right CONSTANTINUS AUG; RIC VII 48. R: SARMATIA DEVICTA, Victory advancing right, holding trophy and palm, spurning captive seated to right. SIRM in exergue. G: Superb EF, silvered. S: CNG eAuction 7/1/15 lot 593

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Constantine and Family

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I think it would be FDC if the letters in SARMATIA were as perfect as the rest. It still amazes me that ancients can be as pristine as this one after nearly 1700 years in the ground. -c
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I had not noticed til you pointed it out. It might not be FDC but it certainly seems to be in mint condition. I can't imagine this saw much circulation. At least I can't see much based on the photos.


And the engraver certainly had skill.

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The sharpness of the devices tells me these dies were fresh, but this is not the first coin struck by them. The absence of the M and partial T suggests the reverse die had been used at least once causing those letters in the die to fill or partially fill with metal from the coin before. There couldn't have been much, if any, circulation before this coin was hidden to be preserved in pristine shape to today. You wouldn't think a follis would have had enough value to be hoarded, but perhaps it was.
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I too love these late AEs bronzes, very often to be found in superb grade, as these didn't circulate widely like earlier bronzes (especially sestertii) during dozens of years. Looks like they found a way to mass produce them cheaply, with a very regular quality: no off-centering and weak strikes like earlier coins, and with a silver content, even low, which protect them from heavy corrosion and usually give them nice patinas and surfaces. Too bad they lack the classical style!

I still need to take pictures of my dozens of ex. after all these years.

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