Constantius Chlorus                305 - 306


If the accounts of chroniclers of the day can be believed, Constantius was the grandnephew of Claudius Gothicus. However, the links to Claudius may have been made up by Constantius sympathizers who noted that Claudius's niece (Claudia) had the same name as his great-aunt. The link would have been valuable as a means to substantiate an imperial line of succession from a desirable former emperor.

Whatever his ancestry, Constantius climbed the military ranks and was in the position of Praetorian Prefect under Maximian. When Maximian was elevated as co-emperor he selected Constantius as his Caesar under Diocletian's Tetrarchy scheme. He would then be assigned the task of regaining Britain which had seceded from the empire under the reign of Carausius and which Maximian himself was unable to take care of. Because Carausius enjoyed a far superior naval fleet, Constantius chose stealth in order to avoid a battle at sea. Thus with the aid of a thick fog over the channel he set out with his troops towards Britain. When he approached London he found that Carausius had been murdered by his own Praetorian Prefect, Allectus, who was defeated in short order. It was here in Britain where Constantius died ten years later, of natural causes, having come to the aid of his son Constantine who was fighting off a Pict invasion.


AE silvered follis Caesar, 293--305 A.D.

26 mm. Augustus, 305--306 A.D.

Obv. FL VAL CONSTANTIVS NOB CAES: Laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust

Rev. GENIO POPVLI ROMANI: Genius standing left, modius on head, holding cornucopiae and pouring libation from patera, HTA in exergue

Sear 3671, RIC 20a, Van Meter 25

Roman Imperial Constantius I Chlorus

AE Follis, silvered 293-305 A.D.

27 mm. 10.25 g.

Siscia, Offina gamma=3, 297 A.D.


Laureate bust right


Genius standing left

RIC-102a, Van Meter 25