Appendix IV: Diploma Evidence Reflecting Uncertainties in Imperial Titulature in Joint Reigns of Father and Son
B. Severns had 13 salutations in both diplomas of 206, 11 in 208, and 13 in 209, but in 210 had slipped back to 12. On coins Severns appears with IMP XI and TRIB. POT. VII, ie. 10 Dec. 198/9 Dec. 199. Later coins of Severns do not register the number of salutations. Caracalla had no imperial acclamations in either diploma of 206, but had acquired two acclamations by 208, repeated in 209 and 210. In correspondence in late 1978, after the publication of RMD I, Dr. Curtis Clay kindly supplied the following information. Although early in 199 the Roman mint eliminated mention of imperial acclamations on coins (followed in 202 by the Eastern mint after the departure of
ROMAN MILITARY DIPLOMAS Severns from the East) acclamations continued to be recorded on medallions. There are few of these extant but they give an indication of the 2ffi£iDl.record. The evidence may be set out as follows: Medallion ~ JMf &f. Silver (SS) T.P. 15 (207) XI Gnecchi, pL 22.2 Bronze(SS) T.P.16(208)i XI MicheIini-ToccipL48 Bronze (C) No T.P. beardless II Gnecchi, pL 95,32 Dr. Clay suggested to me that in any case the latter piece shows that Caracalla was IMP II before the end of 209. Medallions are normally regarded as presenting an accurate a record since, like coins, they were under stricter supervision than inscriptions and this suggests that Severns did not officially accept any acclamation after Ctesiphon (IMP XI, 198) until some time in the second half of 209 when simultaneously he became IMP XlI, Caracalla IMP II and Geta took IMP as praenomen and became Augustus. The occasion for this event would then be a victory in Britain The title BRIT. however, was probably assumed in 210. On diplomas, after the death of Severns and Geta, Caracalla continued with IMP 1I in 212 (RMD 74) but an extra salutation was added in 214 (RMD 131) when he also had the title GERM MAX. This generally agrees with coin evidence. On the other hand Geta's accession in 209 recorded in RMD 191 should be accurate since this has long been suspected from coins which record him as attaining TRIB. POI'. IV. It remains unclear why Severns was accorded all the unofficial acclamations found both in inscriptions and diplomas after Ctesiphon3• The diploma evidence argues that even in Rome the officials who organised the publication of constitutiones were unsure of the position. The fact that from 208-210 Caracalla appears with two acclamations, when his father varied between eleven and thirteen on the same diplomas highlights this uncertainty.