Odoacer was the Germanic leader of the barbarian forces in the service of Rome. When he overthrew the Western Roman Emperor Romulus Augustus in 476 AD, his troops declared him king of Italy (Rex Italiae; his reign lasted until 493). This marked the end of the Western Roman Empire.
Odoacer was wise enough to acknowledge the Eastern Roman Emperor Zeno's supremacy, thus avoiding conflicts with Constantinople. He even minted coins in Zeno's name; this tremissis shows Zeno's bust on the obverse and a Greek cross in a laurel wreath on the reverse. Some years later Zeno bestowed Odoacer with the right to issue coins in his own name.