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Crispus Roman Caesar 'Prince' and son of Constantine the Great for Sale by Expert Coin Dealer

Buy certified authentic Crispus, Roman Caesar 317-326 A.D. general and son of Constantine I the Great online today. He was actually Constantine's Oldest son, however, Constantine's second wife Fausta accused him of trying to rape her, and he was executed, and when the plot was brought to Constantine, he had Fausta boiled in oil alive as punishment. Intriguing fate of the young Roman price who was set to take throne next. It is interesting to note that this similar drama had repeated itself many times throughout the various different emperors up to and even past that time. Explore a world of mystery, intrigue and wonder when you own authentic ancient coins, whether to give as a gift, make a coin collection, an investment or a to learn and preserve history for future generations, coins are certainly it! Enjoy incredible value as every coin purchased here comes with it's own, signed, custom-made certificate of authenticity, a $50-$100 value, absolutely free! Check it out today.


Crispus Authentic Ancient Roman Coins for Sale Online  Reverse of Crispus Certified Authentic Ancient Roman Coin
Example of Authentic Ancient Coin of:

Crispus - Roman Caesar: 317-326 A.D. -
Bronze Follis Cyzicus, 321-324 A.D.
Reference: RIC 16 (Plate22). Rarity 4 in RIC. This coin is much better than RIC.
DNFLIVLCRISPVS NOB CAES - Diademed, draped and cuirassed bust right.
IOVI CONSERVATORI Exe: SMKA - Jupiter standing left, chlamys across left shoulder, holding
sceptre with eagle on top, Victory on globe in right hand; eagle with wreath to left;
captive to right on ground.

In Roman mythology, Jupiter or Jove was the king of the gods, and the god of sky and thunder. He is the equivalent of Zeus in the Greek pantheon. He was called Iuppiter (or Diespiter) Optimus Maximus ("Father God the Best and Greatest"). As the patron deity of ancient Rome, he ruled over laws and social order. He was the chief god of the Capitoline Triad, with sister/wife Juno. Jupiter is also the father of the god Mars with Juno. Therefore, Jupiter is the grandfather of Romulus and Remus, the legendary founders of Rome. Jupiter was venerated in ancient Roman religion, and is still venerated in Roman Neopaganism. He is a son of Saturn, along with brothers Neptune and Pluto. He is also the brother/husband of Ceres (daughter of Saturn and mother of Proserpina), brother of Veritas (daughter of Saturn), and father of Mercury.

Flavius Julius Crispus, also known as Flavius Claudius Crispus and Flavius Valerius Crispus was a Caesar of the Roman Empire. He was the first-born son of Constantine I and Minervina.

Birth

Crispus' year and place of birth are uncertain. He is considered likely to have been born between 299 and 305, somewhere in the Eastern Roman Empire. His mother Minervina was either a concubine or a first wife to Constantine. Nothing else is known about Minervina. His father served as a hostage in the court of Eastern Roman Emperor Diocletian in Nicomedia. Thus securing the loyalty of Caesar of the Western Roman Empire Constantius Chlorus, father of Constantine and grandfather of Crispus.

In 307, Constantine allied to the Italian Augusti, and this alliance was sealed with the marriage of Constantine to Fausta, daughter of Maximian and sister of Maxentius.

The marriage of Constantine to Fausta has caused modern historians to question the status of his relation to Minervina and Crispus. If Minervina was his legitimate wife, Constantine would have needed to secure a divorce before marrying Fausta. This would have required an official written order signed by Constantine himself, but no such order is mentioned by contemporary sources.

This silence in the sources has led many historians to conclude that the relationship between Constantine and Minervina was informal and to assume her to have been an unofficial lover. However, Minervina may have already been dead by 307. A widowed Constantine would need no divorce order.

Neither the true nature of the relationship between Constantine and Minervina nor the reason Crispus came under the protection of his father will ever probably be known. The offspring of an illegitimate affair could have caused dynastical problems and would likely be dismissed, but Crispus was raised by his father in Gaul. This can be seen as evidence of a loving and public relationship between Constantine and Minervina which gave him a reason to protect her son.

The story of Minervina is quite similar to that of Constantine's mother Helena. Constantine's father later had to divorce her for political reasons, specifically, to marry Flavia Maximiana Theodora, the daughter of Maximian, in order to secure his alliance with his new father-in-law. Constantine in turn may have had to put aside Minervina in order to secure an alliance with the same man. Constantius did not however dismiss Constantine as his son, and perhaps Constantine chose to follow the example of his father.

Education

Whatever the reason, Constantine kept Crispus at his side. Surviving sources are unanimous in declaring him a loving, trusting and protective father to his first son. Constantine even entrusted his education to Lactantius, among the most important Christian teachers of that time, who probably started teaching Crispus before 317.

Career

By 317, there were two remaining Augusti in control of the Roman Empire. Constantine reigned as an Western Roman Emperor and his brother-in-law Licinius as an Eastern Roman Emperor.

On 1 March 317, the two co-reigning Augusti jointly proclaimed three new Caesars. Crispus alongside his younger half-brother Constantine II and his first cousin Licinius iunior. Constantine II was the older son of Fausta but was probably about a month old at the time of his proclamation. Thus only Crispus assumed actual duties.

Constantine apparently believed in the abilities of his son and appointed Crispus as Commander of Gaul. The new Caesar soon held residence in Augusta Treverorum (modern Trier), regional capital of Germania.

In January 322, Crispus was married to a young woman called Helena. Helena bore him a son in October, 322. There is no surviving account of the name or later fate of the son. Eusebius of Caesarea reported that Constantine was proud of his son and very pleased to become a grandfather.

Crispus was leader in victorious military operations against the Franks and the Alamanni in 318, 320 and 323. Thus he secured the continued Roman presence in the areas of Gaul and Germania. Crispus joined his father in visiting Rome during 322, and received the warmest and most enthusiastic welcome by the crowds. The soldiers adored him thanks to his strategic abilities and the victories to which he had led the Roman legions.

Crispus spent the following years assisting Constantine in the war against by then hostile Licinius. In 324, Constantine appointed Crispus as the commander of his fleet which left the port of Piraeus to confront the rival fleet of Licinius. The subsequent Battle of Hellespont was fought in at the straits of Bosporus. The 200 ships under the command of Crispus managed to utterly beat the enemy forces which were at least double in number. Thus Crispus achieved his most important and difficult victory which further established his reputation as a brilliant soldier and general.

Following his navy activities, Crispus was assigned part of the legions loyal to his father. The other part was commanded by Constantine himself. Crispus led the legions assigned to him in another victorious battle outside Chrysopolis against the armies of Licinius.

The two victories were his contribution to the final triumph of his father over Licinius. Constantine was the only Augustus left in the Empire. He honoured his son for his support and success by depicting his face in imperial coins, statues, mosaics, cameos, etc. Eusebius of Caesaria wrote for Crispus that he is "an Imperator most dear to God and in all regards comparable to his father."

Crispus was the most likely choice for an heir to the throne at the time. His siblings Constantine II, Constantius II and Constans were far too young and inexperienced.

Execution

In 326, Crispus life came to a sudden end: on his father's orders, he was tried by a local court at Pola, Istria, condemned to death and executed. Soon afterwards, Constantine had his own wife, Fausta, killed; she was suffocated in an over-heated bath.[1]

The reason for this act remains unclear and historians have long debated Constantine's motivation:

  • Zosimus in the 5th century and Joannes Zonaras in the 12th century both reported that Fausta, stepmother of Crispus, was extremely jealous of him. She was reportedly afraid that Constantine would put aside the sons she bore him. So, in order to get rid of Crispus, Fausta set him up. She reportedly told the young Caesar that she was in love with him and suggested an illegitimate love affair. Crispus denied the immoral wishes of Fausta and left the palace in a state of a shock. Then Fausta said to Constantine that Crispus had no respect for his father, since the Caesar was in love with his father's own wife. She reported to Constantine that she dismissed him after his attempt to rape her. Constantine believed her and, true to his strong personality and short temper, executed his beloved son. A few months later, Constantine reportedly found out the whole truth and then killed Fausta.

This version of events has become the most widely accepted, since all other reports are even less satisfactory.

  • That Fausta and Crispus could have plotted treason against Constantine is rejected by most historians. as they would have nothing to gain considering their positions as favourites of Constantine. In any case, such a case would not have been tried by a local court as Crispus' case clearly was.

  • Another view suggests that Constantine killed Crispus because as an supposedly illegitimate son, he would cause a crisis in the order of succession to the throne. However, Constantine had kept him at his side for twenty years without any such decision. Constantine also had the authority to appoint his younger, legitimate sons as his heirs.

  • Some reports claimed that Constantine was envious of the success of his son and afraid of him. This seems improbable, given that Constantine had twenty years of experience as emperor while Crispus was still a young Caesar. Similarly, there seems to be no evidence that Crispus had any ambitions to harm or displace his father.

So while the story of Zosimus and Zonaras seems the most believable one, there are also problems relating to their version of events:

  • Constantine's reaction suggests that he suspected Crispus of a crime so terrible that death was not enough. Crispus also suffered damnatio memoriae, meaning his name was never mentioned again and was deleted from all official documents and monuments. Crispus, his wife Helena and their son were never to be mentioned again in historical records. The eventual fate of Helena and her son is a mystery.

  • Constantine did not restore his son's innocence and name, as he probably would have on learning of his son's innocence. Perhaps Constantine's pride, or shame at having executed his son, prevented him from publicly admitting having made a mistake.

It is beyond doubt that there was a connection between the deaths of Crispus and Fausta. Such agreement among different sources connecting two deaths is extremely rare in itself. A number of modern historians have suggested that Crispus and Fausta really did have an illegitimate affair. When Constantine found out, his reaction was to have both of them killed. What delayed the death of Fausta may have been a pregnancy. Since the years of birth for the two known daughters of Constantine and Fausta remain unknown, one of their births may have delayed their mother's execution.

The story of Zosimus and Zonaras listed above is suspiciously similar to both the legend of Hippolytus of Athens (casting Crispus in the role of the youth, Constantine in the role of Theseus and Fausta in the role of Phaedra) as well as the Biblical account of Joseph and Potiphar's wife.

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