Theodosius II, the only son of Emperor Arcadius and Aelia Eudoxia, was raised to the rank of Augustus at only nine months old. His mother died in 404 and his father in 408 leaving him sole emperor at six. His sister, Aelia Pulcheria, was given responsibility for his education, and the title of Augusta in 414. Most of his reign was long and peaceful, the most notable events being the completion of a new legal code, Codex Theodosianus, and the fortification of Constantinople, making it one of the most heavily defended locations in history. The last years of his reign were marred by repeated invasion of the Balkans by the Huns led by Attila. Theodosius died after a serious hunting accident in 450 A.D.
The miliarense denomination was introduced by Constantine as part of his monetary reforms. Struck on two standards, light and heavy, eighteen light miliarensia or fourteen heavy miliarensia equalled one gold solidus. That they were as highly desirable in antiquity as they are today is evidenced by their extensive mounting and use as pendants. The heavy miliarense was struck at a theoretical 60 to the pound, roughly corresponding to the old weight of the now defunct aureus. The origin of the name is uncertain; Mattingly once suggested that its name commemorated the millenary of the foundation of Rome. Epiphanius of Salamis thought it was derived from ‘miles’, being intended for military pay, but the Nomis Glosses imply a silver unit worth 1/1,000th of a gold pound. Neither of these theories hold up to scrutiny however, and the most likely explanation is that put forward by the fifth century metrologist Dardanius, who suggests that the word implied a coin originally worth 1,000 bronze Nummi. Calculations of relative values seem to indicate this is correct.
Pearl-diademed, draped and cuirassed bust facing left
D N THEODO-SIVS P F AVG
Nimbate emperor standing facing, head left, arm raised and holding globe; star in left field, CON in exergue
A perfect choice for Numismatists, Historians, Military Veterans, Collectors.