Aureus (Coin) Portraying Emperor Commodus

A work made of gold.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of gold.

Date:

180, issued by Commodus

Artist:

Roman; minted in Rome

About this artwork

End of the Good Emperors
The succession pattern set during the rule of the Good Emperors ended in the person of Marcus Aurelius’s son, Commodus (r. A.D. 177–192). The Good Emperors had been carefully picked based on their merits, whereas Commodus inherited the crown. He promptly abused his power, and died a tyrant’s death. The empire never fully recovered the strength and prosperity enjoyed under the Good Emperors. Nor did coin production ever exceed the beauty of the Good Emperors’ output. Finally succumbing to the barbarian Visigoths led by King Alaric (r. A.D. 395–410), Rome was sacked in A.D. 410, after which time the production of the empire’s coins moved to Constantinople.

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Ancient and Byzantine Art

Artist

Ancient Roman

Title

Aureus (Coin) Portraying Emperor Commodus

Origin

Rome

Date

180 AD

Medium

Gold

Inscriptions

Obverse: M COMMODVS ANTONINVS AVG Reverse: LIB AVG TR P V.IMP IIII COS II PP

Dimensions

Diam. 2 cm; 7.14 g

Credit Line

Gift of Martin A. Ryerson

Reference Number

1922.4879

Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email .

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