Macrinus (11th April AD 217 - 8th June AD 218)

Macrinus was born in Caesaria (modern Cherchell, Algeria) in the Roman province of Mauretania to a middle class equestrian family. He received an education which allowed him to ascend to the Roman political class, and over the years earned a reputation as a skilled lawyer. Under the emperor Lucius Septimius Severus he became an important bureaucrat. Severus' successor Caracalla appointed him prefect of the Praetorian guard, the highest office which an equestrian could hold. The prefect was second in command to the emperor and responsible for the Praetorian cohorts, nominally the emperor's bodyguard and the only true military force permitted within the city of Rome. While Macrinus likely enjoyed the trust of Caracalla, this may have changed when, according to tradition, he was prophesied to depose and succeed the emperor. Rumors spread regarding Macrinus' alleged desire to take the throne for himself. Given Caracalla's tendency towards murdering political opponents, Macrinus probably feared for his own safety should the emperor become aware of this prophecy. According to Dio, Caracalla had already taken the step of re-assigning members of Macrinus' staff.

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Macrinus 'Aequitas' AE27 015175

Macrinus 'Aequitas' AE27 Pentassarion
Bronze, 13.69 grams, 27.03 mm. Nikopolis as Istrum. From 300 AD. Obverse: AVT K M OPEL CEVH MAKPINOC (or similar), laureate head right. Reverse: VP CTA LONGINOU NIKOPOLITWN PPOC IC (or similar), Aequitas standing left, holding scales and sceptre. Moushmov 1243. Fine-good fine.

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Macrinus 'Aequitas' AE27 015175

Main Roman Coin Book and Other References:

RIC = Mattingly, Harold    The Roman Imperial Coinage
BMC = Coins of the Roman Empire in the British Museum
RSC = Seaby, H A    Roman Silver Coinage
RCV = Sear, David R    Roman Coins and Their Values
Cr = Crawford, Michael    The Roman Republican Coinage
SB = Sear, David R    Byzantine Coins and Their Values
S = Coins of England and the United Kingdom
WW = (reference & attribution site)

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