Friday, 5 February 2010

MA Thesis, "Constantine the Great: the Coins Speak

On a numismatic message board that I visit, albeit one that I am not a regular contributor to, I came across an interesting thread where one of the members had placed a link to his recently successfully examined MA thesis from the Middle Tennessee State University.

The work on the bronze coinage of Constantine I examined the political motives behind some of the coin types chosen and their historical significance, as well as bringing in historical sources and metallurgical analyses.

Whilst one might want to debate some of the phrasing used and some of the ideas expanded I think the work has some interesting points to make and is amply illustrated to reinforce the discussions, without it becoming a picture book.

The author is to be commended for making his work so available and free of charge, I know my post graduate thesis is not available on such generous terms (although it is available from the publishers, Archaeopress, for around £30).

Yet instead of being congratulated on the message board he has been the subject of an extremely vigorous cross questioning of his ideas in what seems such an unfriendly manner, an examination much more hostile than many a research student's formal viva! Don't get me wrong, question ideas by all means but don't bite the hand that feeds. Such a shame as he is now regretting posting the link in the first place.

If you want to read what Victor Clark has to say on the coins of Constantine the Great his thesis can be downloaded HERE.