Time Line -- Who issued coins when? (A.D. 364-455)
This page lists in chronological order the events that affected who issued coins, and gives the emperors who issued coins between those events.
This information is the primary criteria for dating coins of this period. Types issued in common by two emperors were probably issued in time intervals when they were both ruling, and types not issued by all rulers ruling in a time interval were probably not issued in that time interval.
x The first "x" in a row gives the initial date of that emperor's coins, and
subsequent events after which the emperor continued to issue coins are also marked with x's.
e The final "e" in each row denotes the terminal date of that emperor's coins ("e" for "end").
xx In the lower right corner, the issues of Honorius and Theodosius II continue until 423 and 450 respectively.
In any given column, the x's mark emperors who issued coins from that date to the next date. Generally, all emperor's with x's in a column will be issuing the same types in that time interval. Because there are few further indications on the coins that might allow us to date them more precisely, almost all types are dated to time intervals bounded by the events in this table.
/ date event RIC IX page-number references
1 364 26 Feb 364 Valentinian Augustus [p. xli]
2 364 28 Mar 364 Valens, brother of Valentinian, made Augustus [p. xli]
3 365 28 Sept 365 Procopius Augustus [p. 209]
4 366 27 May 366 Procopius defeated and executed [p. xlii]
5 367 24 Aug 367 Gratian, son of Valentinian, made Augustus (age 8) [p. 14, p. 216]
6 375 17 Nov 375 Valentinian dies [p. xlii]
22 Nov 375 Valentinian II, son of Valentinian and half-brother of Gratian, succeeds him (age 4) [Sear p. 30]
7 378 9 Aug 378 Valens dies at the battle of Adrianople (Hadrianopolis) (not replaced immediately) [p. xlii]
8 379 19 Jan 379 Theodosius made Augustus by Gratian [p. xlii]
9 383 19 Jan 383 Arcadius, son of Theodosius, made Augustus (age 5) [p. xliii]
10 383 July 383 Magnus Maximus Augustus [Sear p. 31]
25 Aug 383 Gratian, fleeing from Magnus Maximus, killed at Lugdunum [p. xliii]
11 387 mid 387 Flavius Victor, son of Magnus Maximus, made Augustus ["towards the end of the period [383-388]" p. 49, RIC. Sear p. 31]
12 388 28 Aug 388 Magnus Maximus surrenders and is executed [p. xliii] [Sear says 28 July 388]
Flavius Victor executed too, very shortly thereafter.
13 392 15 May 392 Valentinian II dies [p. xliii]
14 392 fall Eugenius Augustus [p. xliii] 22 Aug 392 [Sear, p. 31, "after a 3 month interregnum in
the West following the death of Valentinian II"]
15 393 22 Jan (?) 393 Honorius, son of Theodosius and brother of Arcadius, made Augustus (age 8) [p. xliii] [Sear says 10 Jan 393]
16 394 6 Sept 394 Eugenius defeated and executed [p. xliii]
17 395 17 Jan 395 Theodosius dies [p. xliii]
18 402 10 Jan 402 Theodosius II, son of Arcadius, made Augustus (age 8 months) [Sear p. 33]
19 408 1 May 408 Arcadius dies [Sear p. 31]
Later dates: event [RIC X citation]
407 Early 407- Aug/Sept 411 Constantine III Augustus [p. 347]
409 409-410 (Rome) Priscus Attalus Augustus [p. 343] (His rule AD 414-415 in Gaul produced no AE coins.)
410 410-411 Maximus of Barcelona Augustus (deposed and permitted to retire in 411 [Sear]) [p. 351]
414 4 July 414 Pulcheria Augusta [p. 253]
421 8 Feb 421 - early 423 Galla Placidia Augusta [p. 317]
(not to be confused with another Placidia, daughter of Valentinian III)
423 2 Jan 423 Eudocia Augusta [p. 253]
423 15 Aug 423 Honorius dies [p. 317, Sear says 25 Aug 423]
423 20 Nov 423 Johannes Augustus [p. 157, Sear says 25 Aug 423, on the death of Honorius]
425 May 425 Johannes dies [p. 157, Sear says October 425]
424 23 Oct 424 Valentianian III Caesar at Thessalonica [p. 160]
425 23 Oct 425 Valentianian III Augustus at Rome [p. 160, Sear p. 33]]
437 29 Oct 437 Eudoxia, daughter of Theodosius II, married Valentinian III, but had no AE coins [p. 160]
(not to be confused with the earlier Eudoxia, the wife of Arcadius)
450 28 July 450 Theodosius II dies [p. 253]
455 16 Mar 455 Valentinian III assassinated [p. 363]
There is a more-complete and annotated chronological table in RIC IX, pages xli-xliii. David Sear's book, The Emperors of Rome and Byzantium, is a chronogical table giving dates of these events. If Sear and RIC agree, only the RIC citation is given.
Note on precision: Information did not travel instantaniously in the ancient world. The news of the death of a ruler might have taken a month or so to reach distant regions of the empire. Therefore, all the precise dates given above cannot be regarded as the actual dates on which the corresponding coin types changed. Factor in a substantial delay for the mints to react.
Return to the main page on late Roman AE types.