This denarius features the Emperor Gordian I, who ruled between the months of March and April in AD 238, the Year of the Six Emperors (during which six different people were recognized as emperors of Rome). He had accepted the proconsular governorship of Africa Proconsularis in AD 237 and in the following year Maximinus Thrax, an unpopular, oppressive ruler, was killed in a revolt in Africa. After his death, Roman aristocrats in Africa elected Gordian I emperor. Even though Gordian I was around 79 years of age, he accepted the imperial throne and adopted the name Africanus. Because of his short reign, only two reverse types have been found in conjunction with this obverse for this emperor. This coin’s reverse features the legend ROMA AETNERAE (Eternal Rome) and the goddess Roma sitting on a shield, holding a scepter and Victory, who is about to crown her victorious. This reverse relates back to the pro-senatorial ideal that was evident in the reign of Severus Alexander (208-235), who was killed by Maximinus Thrax, and is alluding to the everlasting tradition of Roman constitutionalism. Lauren Brooks 2011.