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Severan Database Project

Severan Database Project

Severan Provincial Coinage:
Author: Julie Langford

This database anticipates Volume V of the ongoing series Roman Provincial Coinage. It contains records of coins minted from twelve cities in Asia Minor from the reigns of Septimius Severus, Caracalla, Macrinus, Elagabalus and Severus Alexander. The data was mined from volumes of the Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum found at the American Numismatic Society and the Hunterian Museum in Glasglow, Scotland. A team of five undergraduate researchers at the University of South Florida under the direction of Prof. Julie Langford compiled and keyed in this data. While these entries have been proofed, there are some issues of consistency that are still being ironed out, mostly in terms of Greek inscriptions. Please notify Julie Langford (jlangfor@cas.usf.edu) in case of any errors or omissions. Since this is an ongoing project, we welcome collaboration to expand the cities or the volumes of the SNG consulted.

Researchers at the University of South Florida are employing this database in order to explore issues such as the reception of Severan imperial propaganda, the maintenance of civic identity and the competition between cities, especially in terms of Neokoroi.
The database is searchable by keywords, citation and Greek legends. It allows researchers to view the catalogs of several coin cabinets at a glance. When used in conjunction with published volumes of Roman Provincial Coinage and RPC Online, the database can be used to create an overview of a city’s numismatic history.

Severan Hoard Analysis
Author: Clare Rowan

This database was constructed as part of the research conducted for my doctorate, Under Divine Auspices: Patron Deities and the Visualisation of Power in the Severan Period. The research was funded by an Australian Postgraduate Award, and was completed at Macquarie University, which houses the Australian Centre for Ancient Numismatic Studies. Given the potential of the information contained in the database for future research, it was decided to make the database available online, at the same address as the Severan provincial coinage project.

The database contains fifty-seven silver hoards ranging in date from AD 198 to c. AD 270. Hoards with a terminus post quem well after the Severan period are included since it could take some time for coins to reach a peak in circulation. The paucity of gold and aes hoards containing Severan material meant that these metals were not included. There are two displays available to the user: one provides a listing of all Severan types found within a particular hoard, and the other provides a summary of all Severan coin types found in the entire sample (all the hoards considered together). Consequently, it is possible to get a one-click overview of the relative frequency of each Severan type, as well as to trace in what hoard each type occurs. The publication details of each hoard are provided, as well as an indication of its geographic locality. For the latter, the established A-E lettering system is used (A = Britain, B = West Continent, C = Italy and Africa, D = Danubian regions, E = the East). These particular divisions may not reveal divergences in coinage circulation as efficiently as other groupings (for example between central and peripheral regions, or military and non-military areas), but in the interests of continuity and to facilitate comparisons with other modern work, the A-E scheme is employed here.

For hoards that were published using Cohen's catalogue, the Cohen-RIC concordance was used to convert the data (Chantraine, H. and Alföldi, M. R.-. (1978). Cohen - RIC - Konkordanz. Bonn.) Coins in a hoard that possessed no ready RIC reference, or were illegible, are tallied at the end. Illegible coins of Julia Domna are included in the total of Domna types struck under Severus, and illegible coins of Caracalla are included in the total of coins struck during his sole rule. This decision was made since most of Domna's coins were struck under Severus, and most of Caracalla's types come from his sole reign; consequently, there is a higher chance that illegible types come from these periods. No coins of Elagabalus' wife Annia Faustina were found in any of the hoards consulted, and consequently she does not figure at all in the database. Occasionally the data also includes subtypes listed in the RIC (e.g. RIC 8b); these are indicated by letters in the entry (e.g. 3 aab = 3 examples of this type were found in the hoard, 2 of subtype a, and one of subtype b).

The database is not intended to give an absolute indication of coins struck under the Severans, but only a suggestion of relative frequency. Occasionally the totals of coinage struck for each Severan emperor will differ slightly from the original publication, particularly for those hoards that were published by Cohen number. This reflects the fact that some issues listed in Cohen's catalogue were later attributed to different emperors (for instance deification issues of Severus, attributed to Severus by Cohen, were placed with Caracalla's issues by Mattingly). Very occasionally, a discrepancy reflects a miscalculation in the original publication. Any errors or omissions may be gratefully brought to the attention of the author (clare.rowan@students.mq.edu.au), but any such instances will not fundamentally alter the image of Severan coinage contained within the database.

Julia Domna Inscriptions
Author: Julie Langford

This ongoing project aims to collect all inscriptions in which the Severan Empress Julia Domna is mentioned. A team of undergraduate researchers at the University of South Florida under the direction of Professor Julie Langford began the database with references to the 460 inscriptions published in Erich Kettenhofen’s Die syrischen Augustae in der historischen Überlieferung published in Bonn by Rudolf Habelt in 1979. They gathered these and then mined L’Annee Epigraphique for any other references to Julia Domna. Also employed in collecting these inscriptions were two invaluable online databases, the Packard Humanities Institute (http://epigraphy.packhum.org/inscriptions/) and the Epigraphische Datenbank Clauss-Slaby (http://www.manfredclauss.de/).

This database is being used by Julie Langford and graduate researchers at the University of South Florida to answer questions such as how, where and when the Empress was celebrated, whether she was honored in her own right or in conjunction with her male relatives, and how various populations responded to imperial propaganda concerning the Empress.

This database will continue to grow as new inscriptions are published. Please call any errors or omissions to the attention of Prof. Julie Langford (jlangfor@cas.usf.edu).

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