Augusus (Estern Roman Empire)
AD 383 - 408
AE AE 2 - Centenionalis
Constantinople mint: AD 383-388
Coins Catalog ID: 3017
Price (USD) VF: $30, XF: $60, FDC: $100
Obverse: D N ARCADIVS P F AVGVSTVS - Pearl diademed bust right, draped and cuirassed
Reverse: VIRTVS EXERCITI - Emperor stepping to the right, treading on captive and holding labarum and globe.
exergue - CONS[Gamma]|
left field - Chi-Rho
RIC, vol. IX, p. 233, 83c
Arcadius - Flavius Arcadius (AD 377 - 408):
Son of Theodosius I and Aelia Flaccilla;
Brother of Honorius;
Husband of Aelia Eudoxia;
Father of Theodosius II and Aelia Pulcheria;
Half-brother of Galla Placidia;
Father-in-law of Marcian and Aelia Eudocia;
Grandfather of Licinia Eudoxia.
AD 383 - 395 - co-Augustus with Theodosius I
AD 395 - 402 - Sole Reign
AD 402 - 408 - co-Augustus with Theodosius II
Paralel rulers of the Western Roman Empire:
Gratian (AD 367 - 383)
Valentinian II (AD 375 - 392)
Magnus Maximus - Usurper (AD 383 - 388)
Flavius Victor - Usurper (AD 387 - 3388)
Eugenius - Usurper (AD 392 - 394)
Honorius (AD 393 - 423)
Constantine III - Usurper (AD 407 - 411)
Constans II - Usurper (AD 408 - 411)
Alexandria, Antioch, Aquileia, Arelate, Constantinopolis, Cyzicus, Heraclea, Lugdunum, Mediolanum, Nicomedia, Ravenna, Rome, Siscia, Sirmium, Thessalonica, Treveri.
Biography: The eldest son of Theodosius, Arcadius was proclaimed Augustus in 383, when only six-year old, and became titular Emperor of the East after the death of his father in 395, while his brother Honorious took charge of the West. This division between the two brothers, until then habitual but temporary and contingent arrangement, proved to be the beginning of the permanent separation of the two halves of the Empire. For many scholars, Arcadius is the first emperor of the Byzantine Empire. For a good deal of Arcadius' reign the real ruler was the Praetorian Prefect Rufinus, a ruthless and avaricious politician. Under his direction, relations with the Western Empire, itself ruled more by the Prefect Stilicho than the ten-year old Honorius, soured. In the ensuing conflict Rufunus was murdered, but that did not heal the breach between East and West. A series of ambitious officials exploited Arcadius' inactivity, his forceful wife Aelia Eudixia entering the fray herself in 400. Among other activities, she took time to condemn and depose the hard-line Christian bishop, or patriarch of Constantinople, the future saint John Chrystostom, who felt ill at ease with the luxurious life of the Empress. Arcadius did not distinguish himself as a statesman right until his death in 408 and it appears that he lacked the mental capacity, will, and stamina to run the Empire. The one thing that he left behind and that mattered was his children: the young Theodosius II and his sister Pulcheria, who proved to be a much more important legacy to the Eastern Empire than anything Arcadius had done in person.
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