Constantius I, as Caesar, 293-305. Aureus (Gold, 19 mm, 5.33 g, 6 h), Antiochia, 293. CONSTAN-TIVS NOB CAES Laureate head of Constantius I to right. Rev. HERCVLI CONS CAES / SMAΞ✱ Hercules standing front, head to left, leaning right on club set on ground and holding Apples of the Hesperides in his left hand; lion skin draped over his left shoulder. Calicó 4833. Cohen -. Depeyrot 9/4. RIC 8. An exceptionally attractive piece, boldly struck in high relief and with a superb portrait. Tiny bump on the edge, otherwise, good extremely fine.
From the collection of Regierungsrat Dr. iur. Hans Krähenbühl, ex Triton V, 15-16 January 2002, 2156.
Long before the First Tetrarchy, emperors such as Domitian, Commodus, Septimius Severus, and Postumus had favorite divine companions, but it was Diocletian, along with his co-ruler Maximian, who brought the concept to a completely new level. While Diocletian, as the senior Augustus, associated himself with Jupiter, his co-ruler and loyal supporter Maximian chose Hercules as his personal companion. A broadly conceived iconographic program followed, with numerous series of coins showing the two Augusti together with, or in the guise of, their divine comites. In addition, the two newly appointed Caesars were also incorporated into the imperial self-representation: Galerius, as the designated successor of Diocletian, was called Jovius after his patron, while Constantius I, the Caesar of Maximian, naturally also adapted the cognomen Herculius. The unity of the four tetrarchs was further emphasized by the fact that all imperial mints were ordered to strike coins in the name of all rulers, regardless of who currently operated a particular workshop. This explains why our coin, struck in Antiochia, a mint under the control of Diocletian, features Constantius I on the obverse, who was given command over Gaul and Britain, far away from Syria.