Tiberius Claudius Nero, born in Rome on November 16th 42 BC, was the son of Livia (from her first marriage). After Livia married Augustus, he became the stepson of the emperor. Tiberius was a capable soldier, commanding the Roman troops in Germania after the death of his brother Drusus in 8 BC. But the relationship between the emperor and his stepson was never good, and it even got worse after Tiberius was forced by Augustus to divorce from his first wife Vipsania in order to marry the emperor's daughter. Some years later, he went into exile to Rhodes by his own choice, from where he was called back in 4 BC and was made heir to the throne by Augustus shortly before the emperor's death in 14 AD. Tiberius was a capable emperor but in 27 AD, he moved to Capri, weary of the throne, and had the Praetorian prefect Sejanus handle the imperial affairs. When the latter tried to seize the purple, however, he was liquidated by the legitimate emperor. Tiberius himself, the second emperor of the Roman Empire,
died on March 16th 37 AD.
2.1. Some general notes
Tiberius didn't change much of the currency system apart from raising the silver content of the denarius to about 98 % and raising the weight of the Sestertius to about 25.50-28.25 and that of the Dupondius to 13.50-15.50 grams. The mint of Lugdunum continued to issue Aurei and Denarii, from 14-21 AD also Semisses (?) and Quadrantes, while Rome issued Asses, Dupondii and Sestertii. In 19-21 AD, some were also issued in Commagene.
Tiberius' portrait strongly resembles that of Augustus, but he usually has a slightly hooked nose.
Different portrait-types of Tiberius (Denarii).
|15-18 n. Chr.||36-37 n. Chr.|
2.3. The Types
Tiberius used many dynastical coin types, and his largest series of AE-coins glorified Augustus. Coins with his own portrait are, compared to other emperors, somewhat scarce.
Probably the commonest Tiberius coin is an undated Lugdunum denarius, probably issued 21-25 AD. The obverse shows Tiberius, surrounded by the legend TI CAESAR DIVI AVG F AVGVSTVS, the reverse a female figure seated right (probably Livia or Pietas), surrounded by the legend PONTIF MAXIM, referring to the highest religious office.
Another interesting coin type is this As, struck 22-30 AD in Rome, which is glorifying Augustus. The obverse shows Augustus with a radiate crown and the legend DIVVS AVGVSTVS PATER, the reverse, an altar between S - C and above PROVIDENT. There are two similar types showing a winged thunderbolt resp. an eagle standing on a winged thunderbolt on the reverse.