One of the most exciting, and somewhat new areas of numismatics (coin collecting) is ancient coins from Greek and Roman Empires. For very affordable prices, you can assemble a collection of actual, genuine coins from biblical times, i.e., hundreds of years before to hundreds of years after Christ. It is pretty amazing to hold these in your hands and think they circulated during the times of Alexander the Great, Julius Caesar, and, in this case, Constantine.
Ryland's coin comes from Constantine II, son of Constantine the Great. Constantine II was made Caesar (junior emperor) in 330 AD, and ruled as Augustus (senior emperor) between 337AD and 340AD.
The coin in our picture comes from Romanorum Ancient Coins in Boston. Here is the description they supply for this coin:
CONSTANTINE II (AD 337-340)
AE3, 1.61 g.
Obverse: DN CONSTANTINVS PF AVG
Laureate head, r.
Reverse: GLORIA EXERCITVS
Two soldiers standing facing each other, each holding a spear, one standard between them.
Mint city: Cyzicus. SMKE dot. Before AD 340
Ref: RIC VII, 20.
Typical retail prices for such a coin start around $5 US dollars for unappealing pieces and rise toward $50 or more for nice-looking examples such as the one from Romanorum. Figure if you have one to sell, an honest dealer in ancient coins would pay about one-half of retail price for it.
CoinQuest thanks Romanorum for use of their coin image. It is a nice one!