Collection History: Donated by R.S. Shankland in 1940
Postumus, a military commander under Gallienus, usurped power around the year 259 AD and assumed the position of emperor in the western provinces. His military successes against the Germanic tribes in the west allowed him to gain immense popularity in Gaul. In order to ensure the safety of what scholars now call the “Gallic Empire,” Postumus made sure to maintain a strong navy as well as his legions. This coin, which depicts a galley coupled with the inscription LAETITIA, shows that he not only maintained the Roman navy, but that it was successful against pirates and enemy ships during his reign. Allison Gamble 2013.