Q:

What coin had a face on the front and figure holding a spear on the back?

A:

Quick Answer

The miliarense is a coin from the Roman monetary system that was used during the early part of the fourth century. This large silver coin was first introduced during the reign of Constantine. The Byzantines reintroduced the coin several hundred years later between the seventh and 11th centuries.

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Full Answer

Two types of miliarense existed. Although the size of these coins could vary, they generally weighed between 3.8 and 6 grams and had a diameter of between 23 and 24 millimeters. Those who wanted to equal one gold soldius needed to provide 14 heavy miliarensia and 18 light miliarensia.

Roman coinage allowed for commerce and technology development as members of all classes were permitted to use the coins on goods and services, much as civilizations do today. In addition to having monetary value, Romans used coins to spread the imagery of the ruling class. Roman coins often included images of emperors or other important Roman monuments. In many instances, the lower-class citizens would never be closer to the emperors or the monuments than they were when they held these coins.

Modern day collectors continue to desire these coins thanks to their rarity. The busts and reverse types featured on these coins are often impeccably executed, which adds to collectors' desire for the coins.

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