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Roman Empire, Philip the Arab for Otacilia Severa, Denarius

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Roman Empire, Philip the Arab for Otacilia Severa, Denarius (obverse) Roman Empire, Philip the Arab for Otacilia Severa, Denarius (reverse)

Marcia Otacilia Severa married Marcus Julius Philippus when he was an officer of the Praetorian Guard under Emperor Gordian III. When Gordian died in 244 malicious gossip had it that Philippus had a hand in his death, altough particulars are unknown his soldiers declared Philippus their new emperor. He reigned under the name of Philippus Arabs.

Philippus Arabs fell in 249 in a battle against the usurper and later emperor Decius. When the news of the emperor's death reached Rome, his son Philippus Junior, who was his father's co-regent, was murdered. Otacilia Severa supposedly befell the same fate, for the names of all three were erased from the inscriptions. This suggests a damnatio memoriae, a 'condemnation of memory.'

This denarius shows Otacilia Severa on the obverse. The reverse depicts Concordia, the personification of harmony.

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Signet Sunflower Foundation