Doktorarbeit: Münzen und Denkmäler von und für Severus Alexander

Münzen und Denkmäler von und für Severus Alexander

Konstruktion eines Herrscherbildes

Studien zur Geschichtsforschung des Altertums, volume 45

Hamburg , 442 pages

ISBN 978-3-339-12660-3 (print)
ISBN 978-3-339-12661-0 (eBook)

about this book

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This book deals with the ruler portrait of Severus Alexander as well as the various modes of his imperial representation. In terms of sources, the focus is on the surviving monuments and inscriptions for this emperor in addition to numismatic evidence. Severus Alexander distanced himself in various ways from his predecessor, Elagabalus, yet at the same time he continued to follow pre-existing models from the reigns of Septimius Severus and Caracalla, as well as those from even earlier traditions. This trend is particularly reflected in his sacral representation as well as its local reception: How did the emperor outline his relationship towards certain deities? To which deities did he propagandize a close, or even patronage relationship? With which deities did he want to be identified? In order to clarify these points, it is necessary to investigate the integration of Jupiter, Mars, Romulus, and Sol into the sacral representation of Severus Alexander. It is likewise necessary to consider further aspects of sacral representation, such as the implementation of imperial virtues (Pietas, Aequitas, Providentia etc.) and desirable circumstances (Felicitas, Pax, Salus etc.) into the ruler portrait of this emperor. A particular focus is on his distancing from the religious representation of Elagabalus and likewise on the intentional orientation towards the iconography of Septimius Severus and his sons, as well as the reutilization of much older motifs—which is precisely how the conventional character of the sacral representation of Severus Alexander becomes apparent. The imperial canon(/custom?) of virtue is also reflected in depictions of the emperor in his coinage: here, too, a preference for a conservative iconography can be determined. Concepts and motifs are assumed from the iconographic arsenal of the imperial coinage of Septimius Severus and his sons, whereas certain aspects of Elagabalus’s self-portrayal are rejected.

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