Decius was a leading commander in the employ of the emperor Philip I. When several revolts broke out in different quarters of the empire Decius was selected to push back the Goths. Dutifully, he went on his way and did so effective a job of handling the invaders that the soldiers hailed him as their emperor on the spot. Philip was none too amused at this and gathered his army to meet the new usurper. A major battle was fought at their meeting point in Verona ending with Philip's defeat.
On arrival to Rome he was well received by the people and the Senate. However, he hardly earned any brownie points when he became a rather energetic persecutor of Christians. Before long he was engaged in another bout of incursions from the Goths. This time luck was not on his side and a tactical error on his part led to the early death of his son and co-Augustus Herennius Etruscus. Trying to marshall the spirits of his men he is recorded as brushing off the loss with the nonchalant comment "The death of one soldier but hardly bothers me". All for naught since his death was to follow soon after. Speculation of contemporary biographers look suspiciously on Trebonianus Gallus, who became emperor immediately afterwards.
RIC 9, Cohen 45 AR Antoninianus Obv: IMPTRAIANVSDECIVSAVG - Radiate bust right, draped and cuirassed.
Rev: GENILLVRICI - Genius standing left, a patera in right hand and cornucopia in left hand.
RIC 115c, Cohen 40 Double Sestertius Obv: IMPCMQTRAIANVSDECIVSAVG, radiate, draped and cuirassed bust right
Rev: FELICITASSAECVLI, S C across field, Felicitas standing facing, head left, holding caduceus and cornucopiae.
RIC 117d, Cohen 55 Dupondius Obv: IMPCMQTRAIANVSDECIVSAVG, radiate and cuirassed bust right, seen from behind.
Rev: GENIVSEXERCILLYRICIANI, Genius of the armies of Illyricum standing left, holding patera and cornucopia, standard right.
SNG Levante 1165, SNG France 1766 AE34 (Cilicia, Tarsus) Obv: AVKEGMECŠKOVŠEKITPAIANOCEVEVCEB, radiate, draped and cuirassed bust right; P P across field.
Rev: TAPCOV MHTPOPOLEWC, humped bull kneeling before garlanded altar; behind, upper part of male figure (Trajan Decius?) facing, holding a shield and lance; on the right, Perseus standing left, holding Gorgoneion, harpe and phile over altar; on left, Demeter standing right, pointing two torches towards a high column surmounted by a cultus-statuette of Apollo Lykeios holding two wolves. Lot sold for $240 1/16/02.