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Title: The coinage of the Gallic Empire
Author: Mairat, Jerome
ISNI:       0000 0004 4618 8061
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2014
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This thesis presents a new systematic arrangement of the coinage of the Gallic Empire as the basis for a revised edition of Roman Imperial Coinage. The coinage of all denominations, gold, silver and bronze, are unified into a single structure of issues. In 260, Postumus revolted against the Roman emperor Gallienus and took control of the Gauls. The chronology of his reign and of his successors is reviewed. The short reign of Domitianus II is interpreted as a revolt against the elevation of Tetricus. A rearrangement of Tetricus’s coinage supported by the epigraphic evidence proves that the elevation of Tetricus II to the Caesarship must be redated from 273 to 272. The location of the mints is discussed. Conclusive hoard evidence proves that the main mint was located at Trier, and not at Cologne. The study of iconography implies that choices were not necessarily made by the imperial authorities, but that more freedom was given to engravers than is usually assumed. The use of earlier coins as an iconographic repertoire strongly suggests that earlier coins were brought to the mint to be melted down. Metrological analyses of gold coins of the Gallic emperors show for the first time that silver was deliberately added to the alloy, following a practice introduced by Valerian and continued by Gallienus. The debasement of the ‘silver’ coinage is studied in parallel with its contemporary evolution within the Central Empire. Coin circulation is used in order to determine the frontiers of the Gallic Empire. It is demonstrated that the Gallic Empire reached its apogee between 262 and 265, ruling over Britain, the Gauls, Hispania and Raetia. The nature of the Gallic Empire is discussed. It is argued that this ‘Empire’ should not be viewed as a form of separatism, as often claimed, but as the unintended result of a status quo following Postumus’s acclamation and the long postponement of a final confrontation against the emperor of Rome.
Supervisor: Howgego, Christopher John; Bland, Roger Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: History ; Archeology ; Roman archeology ; History of the ancient world ; coins ; coinage ; Gallic Empire ; Roman Empire numismatics