Constantine the Great (306 - 337)
Purist coin collectors may want to look away now :-)
This coin was one of a few 'junk' coins I bought to experiment
with. None of these had any visible markings on them until I
soaked it in stuff called 'Scalex multi-purpose descaler' overnight.
Some of these coins cleaned up to reveal featureless disks of
copper, but a quick rinse revealed that this particular coin
was in surprisingly good condition. The text on the back is particularly
clear, and the letters at the bottom (SMANA) reveal it was made
in Antioch, home of the holy hand grenade. The other text, GLORIA
EXERITUS, means 'Glory of the Army'.
The batch of coins I bought had three of these little coins
in it, all heavily encrusted but underneath in quite good condition.
The On-Line dealer I bought these coins from said that these
'clearance' coins were not up to much, but I found out that most
of them had identifiable markings. Not bad for 40p each.