Tetricus I, 271 – 274. Aureus, Cologne or Treveri 272, AV 4.79 g. IMP C TETRICVS P F AVG Laureate and cuirassed bust r., with drapery on far shoulder. Rev. P M TR P II C – OS P P Tetricus standing r., in military dress, holding globe and spear. C 128 var. RIC 5. Schulte 29a. Biaggi 1553 (this coin). S. Sondermann, ”Neue Aurei, Quinare und Abschläge der gallischen Kaiser von Postumus bis Tetricus”, Bonn 2010, p. 174, no. 4.1 (this coin illustrated). Calicó 3887 (this coin).
Estimate: 50'000 CHF
Starting price: 40'000 CHF
Price realized: 130'000 CHF
Extremely rare. A wonderful portrait of excellent style, good extremely fine
Sold by Emile Bourgey, Paris, auction 25 May 1950, lot 167. Sold for FF. 230’000.
Leo Biaggi de Blasys (1906-1979) Collection, acquired privately in 1978 by Bank Leu (Zürich) and a partner.
Sold by Numismatica Ars Classica, Zurich, auction 33, 6 April 2006, lot 571.
Following the sudden and unexpected murder of Victorinus – a valiant emperor who preserved the Romano-Gallic Empire from disintegration – the political scenario in the western provinces became precarious. Stepping into the void, if we believe the notoriously unreliable Historia Augusta, was Victoria, mother of the slain Victorinus. Through various means she was able to have Tetricus I, who probably was her grandson, hailed emperor at Bordeaux in 271. The once strong and independent empire founded more than a decade ago by Postumus began to split at the seams under Tetricus, who associated his eponymous son with his regime. In 272 the mighty emperor Aurelian returned to Europe after having just brought a much stronger separatist empire in Palmyra to its knees. He then set his sights on recovering the western provinces. Finally, in the spring of 274, the armies of Aurelian and Tetricus met at Châlons-sur-Marne, where the central armies defeated the Gallic legions and the separatist empire was absorbed back into the central empire. Historians have questioned if the battle was legitimate or merely orchestrated based upon an earlier covert agreement by Tetricus to surrender. Afterwards, Tetricus was treated with great honour by Aurelian, who restored his family’s senatorial status and appointed him governor of Lucania, where he is said to have lived to an advanced age.