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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Byzantine Coins ▸ Comnen Dynasty ▸ Manuel IView Options:  |  |  | 

Manuel I Comnenus, 8 April 1143 - 24 September 1180 A.D.

Manuel's reign was a period in which the Byzantine Empire flourished. He was quick to become personally involved in military campaigns. Gibbons' "Decline & Fall" notes, "The first in the charge, the last in the retreat, [Manuel I's] friends and his enemies alike trembled, the former for his safety, and the latter for their own." Unfortunately his over ambitious policies created enemies and expended the strength of the state. He was severely defeated by the Turks and died a broken man, ruler of a broken empire. Byzantium Empire 1170 AD


Byzantine Empire, Manuel I Comnenus, 8 April 1143 - 24 September 1180 A.D., Brockage

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A brockage occurs when a blank is struck with a previously struck coin which adhered to the opposite die.Click here to read a detailed explanation.
BZ69198. Bronze half tetarteron, SBCV 1980; DOC IV, part 1, 23, VF, weight 1.176 g, maximum diameter 17.0 mm, die axis 0o, uncertain Greek mint, 1152 - c. 1160 A.D.; obverse Θ / Γ/ε−ωP/ΓI/OC, bust of St. George facing, beardless, wearing nimbus, tunic, cuirass, and sagion, spear in right, shield in left; reverse incuse of obverse; $70.00 (€60.90)
 


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According to the Golden Legend, a plague-bearing dragon lived in a lake near a city called Silene, in Libya. To appease the dragon, the people fed it two sheep every day. When the sheep failed, they fed it their children, chosen by lottery. It happened that the lot fell on the king's daughter, Sabra. Sabra was sent out to the lake, dressed as a bride, to be fed to the dragon. Saint George was ridding past when dragon reared out of the lake. He fortified himself with the Sign of the Cross charged it on horseback with his lance, and gave it a grievous wound. He then called to the princess to throw him her girdle. After he put it around its neck, the dragon followed the girl like a meek beast on a leash. The princess and Saint George led the dragon back to the city of Silene. It terrified the people at its approach, but Saint George called out to them, saying that if they consented to become Christians and be baptized, he would slay the dragon. The king and the people converted to Christianity and George slew the dragon. On the site where the dragon died, the king built a church to the Blessed Virgin Mary and Saint George, and from its altar a spring arose whose waters cured all disease.
BZ75890. Bronze half tetarteron, SBCV 1980; DOC IV, part 1, 23, aF, green patina, weight 1.430 g, maximum diameter 15.6 mm, die axis 180o, uncertain Greek mint, 1152 - c. 1160 A.D.; obverse Θ / Γ/ε−ωP/ΓI/OC (or similar), bust of St. George facing, beardless, wearing nimbus, tunic, cuirass, and sagion, spear in right, shield in left; reverse MANYH ∆εCΠOT, Manuel, bust facing, wearing crown and loros, labarum in right, globus cruciger in left; $30.00 (€26.10)
 


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Cupped coins required at least two blows to strike and the obverse die was rocked from one side to the other between blows. Since Christ's face is in the center of many designs, such as on this coin, it is often distorted or even missing due to the overlapping of the strikes in the center. On this coin the two halves of the nimbus cruciger (halo) are offset due to variation in alignment between the two strikes. Christ's face is, however, nicely struck. The result is somewhat exotic.
SH08813. Gold hyperpyron, SBCV 1956, gVF, weight 4.27 g, maximum diameter 29.4 mm, die axis 180o, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, obverse + KE RO-[HΘEI], IC - XC, bust of Christ facing, beardless, wearing numbus cr., pallium and colobium, raising right hand in benediction, scroll in left hand; reverse MA/NY/HΛ / ∆EC/ΠO/T/H on left, Tω/ΠOP/ΦY/POΓ/NH/T (or similar) on right, Manuel standing facing wearing crown, divitision and chlamys, labarum in left, patriarchal globus cruciger in right, hand of God (manus Dei) upper right crowns him; wavy flan as typical for the type (even the Sear plate coin is wavy); SOLD







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REFERENCES

Bellinger, A.R. Catalogue of the Byzantine Coins in the Dumbarton Oaks Collection and in the Whittemore Collection, Vol. IV, Part 1: Alexius I to Alexius V (1081-1204). (Washington D.C., 1966).
Berk, H.J. Roman Gold Coins of the Medieval World, 383 - 1453 A.D. (Joliet, IL, 1986).
Grierson, P. Byzantine Coins. (London, 1982).
Hendy, M. Coinage and Money in the Byzantine Empire 1081-1261. (Washington D.C., 1969).
Marchev, V. and R. Wachter. Catalogue of the Late Byzantine coins, Vol. I, 1082 - 1261 AD. (Veliko Tarnovo, Bulgaria, 2011).
Morrisson, C. Catalogue des Monnaies Byzantines de la Bibliothèque Nationale. (Paris, 1970).
Sabatier, J. Description générale des monnaies Byzantines. (Paris, 1863).
Sear, D.R. Byzantine Coins and Their Values. (London, 1987).
Sommer, A.U. Die Münzen des Byzantinischen Reiches 491-1453. Mit einem Anhang: Die Münzen des Kaiserreichs von Trapezunt. (Regenstauf, 2010).
Ratto, R. Monnaies Byzantines et d'autre Pays contemporaines à l'époque byzantine. (Lugano, 1930).
Tolstoi, I. Monnaies byzantines. (St. Petersburg, 1913 - 14).
Wroth, W. Catalogue of the Imperial Byzantine Coins in the British Museum. (London, 1908).

Catalog current as of Thursday, September 03, 2015.
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Byzantine Coins of Manuel I