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Clodius Macer



1. Biography
2. Coinage
2.1. Some general notes
2.2. Portrait
2.3. The Types
2.4. Coins


1. Biography

L. Clodius Macer was legate of the Legio III. Augusta in Numidia. In spring 68 AD, Macer rebelled against Nero and cut off Rome's grain supply. The reason for his revolt was the growing disaffection under the reign of Nero. Macer supported the candidate of Vindex and Otho, Sulpicius Galba, who was appointed emperor after the suicide of Nero. Prior to his arrival at Rome, the new emperor had Clodius Macer executed out of fear that the North African legate may seize the purple himself.


2. Coinage

2.1. Some general notes

Numismatists generally agree that Clodius Macer established a new mint at Carthage. The coins have to be dated to spring 68 to early fall 68 BC. With approximately 60-70 specimens known to exist, all of Macer's coins are very rare.

2.2. Portrait

Few of Macer's coins bear a portrait, which generally is of rather crude style and always bare-headed. About 15 specimens bearing a portrait are known to exist; they are struck from several differing dies.


2.3. The Types

Not surprisingly, Macer's coinage is propagandistic. Many of his coins show deities and personifications (Roma, Victoria, Africa) rather than the usurper's portrait, but some also feature a lion's head. The legends usually name Macer, sometimes connected with the affix LIBERATRIX or CARTHAGO. The reverses show a galley (PROPRAE AFRICAE), legionary standards (LIB AVG LEG III) or a trophy (CLODI MACRI). Of special interest is the Triskeles type with SICILIA-legend, which lead numismatists and historians to assume that Macer at some point also controlled Sicilia.

2.4. Coins


Legend-combinations alphabetically sortedAll legends

ObverseReverse
L C MACRI CARTHAGO S CSICILIA
L C MACRI S CLIB AVG LEG III
L CLODI MACR LIBERATRIX S CMAC RIANA LIB LEG I
MACR IA NA LIB LEG I
MACRIA NA LIB LEG I
L CLODI MACRI S   CLIB AVG LEG III
L CLODI MACRI CARTHAGO S CS  ICILIA
SICILIA
L CLODI MACRI LIBERA S CLIB AVG LEG III
LIB LEG III AVG
L CLODI MACRI LIBERATRIX S CLIB AVG LEG III
L CLODI MACRI S CLIB AVG LEG III
LIB LEG III
MAC RIAN LIB LEG I
MAC RIANA LIB LEG I
MACR IANA LIB LEG I
PROPRAE AFRICAE
[ ] AFRCAE
L CLODIVS MACER S CPRO PRAE AFRICAE
PROPRA AFRICA
PROPRAE AFRICAE
ROMA S CL CLODI MACRI