Presentation Type

Paper

Title of Abstract

Tyche's Twin

Abstract

Subject Domain: History – Ancient Rome – Severan Dynasty Motivation: While doing undergraduate research this summer, I noticed a trend on the coinage of Laodicaea ad Mare during the reign of Emperor Septimius Severus. This trend was the city’s tendency to depict the empress, Julia Domna, in the same way it depicted its patron goddess, Tyche after the Antioch Mint had been transferred to Laodicaea ad Mare as a punishment by the emperor. In order to understand why these depictions occurred so suddenly in our coinage records and what the motivations behind them might have been, I began my research. Thesis: In order to both proclaim its superior status over Antioch and form a stronger relationship with Severus, Laodicaea ad Mare began to synthesize its patron goddess, Tyche, with Severus’ wife and hometown girl Julia Domna. Methodology: My methodology included examination of various documents like modern historiographical writings and classical authors and philosophers. I also employed the Severan Provinicial Coinage database to examine coinage of Laodicaea ad Mare, Antioch, and other nearby Syrian cities to discover whether other nearby cities also synthesized the empress to Tyche. Finally, I had to use the information I had gathered to form a viable thesis and argue its likelihood. Conclusions: Antioch and Laodicaea ad Mare were both able to claim Tyche and Julia Domna as their own, but only Laodicaea ad Mare did so. By synthesizing their shared, Syrian empress with Tyche, their shared goddess of fortune, Laodicaea ad Mare attempted to claim each as its own and therefore boldly proclaim its superiority over Antioch for at least seven years. However, in the long run, Antioch was too important to stay ignored and any competition that may have been perceived between it and Laodicaea ad Mare was minimal and predominantly one sided. By refusing to outwardly acknowledge its rivalry with Laodicaea ad Mare, Antioch belittled Laodicaea ad Mare and reasserted its dominance simply by adhering to its usual iconography. Thus the more prestigious Antioch retained its superior status over Laodicaea ad Mare long after the strange blip on their shared-history’s radar, while Laodicaea ad Mare forever clung to its brief hegemony as the number one city in Syria.

Categories

Social Sciences

Research Type

Research Assistant

Mentor Information

Dr. Julie Langford

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Tyche's Twin

Subject Domain: History – Ancient Rome – Severan Dynasty Motivation: While doing undergraduate research this summer, I noticed a trend on the coinage of Laodicaea ad Mare during the reign of Emperor Septimius Severus. This trend was the city’s tendency to depict the empress, Julia Domna, in the same way it depicted its patron goddess, Tyche after the Antioch Mint had been transferred to Laodicaea ad Mare as a punishment by the emperor. In order to understand why these depictions occurred so suddenly in our coinage records and what the motivations behind them might have been, I began my research. Thesis: In order to both proclaim its superior status over Antioch and form a stronger relationship with Severus, Laodicaea ad Mare began to synthesize its patron goddess, Tyche, with Severus’ wife and hometown girl Julia Domna. Methodology: My methodology included examination of various documents like modern historiographical writings and classical authors and philosophers. I also employed the Severan Provinicial Coinage database to examine coinage of Laodicaea ad Mare, Antioch, and other nearby Syrian cities to discover whether other nearby cities also synthesized the empress to Tyche. Finally, I had to use the information I had gathered to form a viable thesis and argue its likelihood. Conclusions: Antioch and Laodicaea ad Mare were both able to claim Tyche and Julia Domna as their own, but only Laodicaea ad Mare did so. By synthesizing their shared, Syrian empress with Tyche, their shared goddess of fortune, Laodicaea ad Mare attempted to claim each as its own and therefore boldly proclaim its superiority over Antioch for at least seven years. However, in the long run, Antioch was too important to stay ignored and any competition that may have been perceived between it and Laodicaea ad Mare was minimal and predominantly one sided. By refusing to outwardly acknowledge its rivalry with Laodicaea ad Mare, Antioch belittled Laodicaea ad Mare and reasserted its dominance simply by adhering to its usual iconography. Thus the more prestigious Antioch retained its superior status over Laodicaea ad Mare long after the strange blip on their shared-history’s radar, while Laodicaea ad Mare forever clung to its brief hegemony as the number one city in Syria.