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Saturday, 12 October 2013

The Monetary Reform Of Diocletian – Part Three

In the earlier parts of this series, we saw the steps taken by Diocletian before full reform of the monetary system i.e. improvement in the standard and quality of the gold coins. In this part, we are going to analyze the new names introduced in the year 293 AD.

The Introduction Of The New System In 293 AD

In the year 293 AD, with the appointment of Galerius and Constantius as Caesars, the political system of the Tetrarchy was finally established and the speed of administrative and fiscal reforms began to accelerate. In this context, we undertook a more ambitious monetary reforms pre-modern history, involving a radical break with the existing system.

Not know the exact time of its implementation, but was held without a doubt, between the years 293 and 294 AD, preferring the more recent authors as Kenneth Harl or Richard Abdy, the earliest date. The overall objective of the reform was to return to a system similar to the one introduced during the High Empire by Nero, that is, a nostalgic return to a golden past.

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In the golden reformed now joined a new minted silver coin weighing 1/96 of the Roman pound (XCVI number on the back of some emissions) i.e. about 3.4 grams, though most were wedged beneath the target weight. It was the first piece of pure silver out of the Roman mints and reproduced in a century, in fact, the standard of the denarius of Nero and his law of 95% purity. It seems that this piece was designated argentous.

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