Roman Coinage in Pannonia
Looking at the history books, the conquest of Pannonia has parallels
with the conquest of Britain. Both were invaded at roughly the
same time; both had rebellions by the Celt tribes who lived there,
who killed the earlier Roman settlers, and were put down with brutal
Roman resettlement started about 10 AD and the area became more important
as the route to Dacia. The Danube became the frontier of the Roman
world for hundreds of years. A fleet was maintained there and many
forts and garrison towns were built . Larger roman settlements such
as Mursa, Cibalia, Sirmium and Marsonia grew on the flat plain between
the rivers Drava and Sava.
One would expect then, a rich deposit of roman coins in the region,
and this is so, though coins from 1st century BC - 1st century AD
have been very much fewer than expected.
The large amount
of soldiery present locally in the mid-3rd century prompted the establishments
of two mints in the region; at Siscia (Sisak) and Sirmium (Srijemska
Mitrovice). Needless to say, coins from these mints are the most
common. In fact, so many so-called rare coins have been rescued,
that the rarity ratings for them have dropped considerably .
Provincial mints are those not classed as issuing imperial coinage.
These abounded earlier in many city states, and later by roman colonies
at the fringes of the empire. The most important one regarding finds
in this region, is Viminacium in the province of Moesia Superior.
This mint produced sestertius sized bronzes between the years 239
- 295, when elsewhere in the empire the quality of coinage was dropping
and getting smaller. These coins are very common finds. In one area,
Moesian coins of Philip (244-249) outnumbered even the later 4th
century common types.
Other provincial coins are mainly from Moesia Inferior, Stobi in
Macedonia and Nicaea in Bithynia (northern Turkey).