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Byzantine Empire, Maurice Tiberius, 13 August 582 - 22 November 602 A.D.
Most references attribute this type to Antioch. Although this type is not listed in DOC I, Grierson attributes all solidi with this wide-faced portrait to Antioch. Hahn attributes the type to Constantinople. SH90884. Gold light weightsolidus, 20 siliquae; SBCV 531, Hahn MIB 14, Sommer 7.61, Adelson 88 - 89 corr. (rho-crossscepter), DOC I -, Wroth BMC -, Morrisson BnF -, Tolstoi -, Ratto -, gVF, uneven strike, tight flan, weight 3.390 g, maximum diameter 20.7 mm, die axis 180o, 10th officina, Constantinopolis or Antioch mint, 583 - 602 A.D.; obverse D N MAVRIC - TIb P P AVG, helmeted, draped, and cuirassedbust facing, globus cruciger in right hand, shield in left, helmet with arc ornament in front and plume; reverse VICTORI-A AVCC I, angel standing facing, long cross in right, globus cruciger in left, OBXX in exergue; Forum knows of only seven other examples of this extremely raretype; extremely rare; $1860.00 SALE PRICE $1674.00
Byzantine Empire, John VI Cantacuzenus and John V Palaeologus, 13 May 1347 - April 1353 A.D.
When Andronicus III died, his chief administrator, John Kantakouzenos asserted a claim to regency of the young emperor John V. The emperor's mother, Anna of Savoy, was appointed regent and she had John Kantakouzenos declared an enemy of the state. John Kantakouzenos defeated Anna with Ottoman help, and he was made Emperor John VI. John V was married to his daughter, Helena Kantakouzene, and the boy was allowed to reign as the junior emperor. John VI Kantakouzenos spent much of his own private wealth unsuccessfully trying to strengthen the Empire but was still unpopular because of his ties to the Ottomans. His attempt to curb Genoese power ended with the total destruction of the Byzantine fleet in 1349. John VI ignored his young colleague and in time even replaced him with his own son Matthew. John V Palaeologus obtained Genoese help, overthrew his rivals, and banished John Kantakouzenos to a monastery, where he lived 30 years as the monk Joasaph and wrote his famous history.SH70968. Gold hyperpyron, Lianta 849; Bendall 2004b, p. 297, C; SBCV 2526; Sommer 84.1; Grierson 1296; DOC V -, VF, weight 3.402 g, maximum diameter 25.3 mm, die axis 180o, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, 2 Feb 1325 - 1328 or possibly to 1330 A.D.; obverseNimbate half-length facing figure of the Virgin Maryorans within city walls, four castles forming walls, star on each side of the uppermost castle, B lower left, A lower right; reverse John VI on left and Andronicus V on right, kneeling facing, Christ stands behind with hands over their heads in benediction; IUINK (or similar) downward on left and IUINKY (or similar) downward on right, N's reversed; very rare; $1800.00 SALE PRICE $1620.00
Romanus III Argyrus, 12 November 1028 - 11 April 1034
Romanus III was fanatically devoted to the Virgin. His adoration found expression in the building and restoration of churches dedicated to St. Mary and also explains the Virgin's prominence on his coinage. MΘ is a Greek abbreviation for Mητερα Tου Θεου - Mother of God. ΘCE abbreviates Θεοτοκε - God-bearer, also referring to the Virgin. On one of his types, a silver miliaresion, the inscription reads: Παρθενε σοι πολυαινε ος ηλιτικη παντα κατοπθοι, which means, "He who places his hopes on thee, O Virgin all-glorious, will prosper in all he does."SH73344. Gold histamenon nomisma, DOC III, part 2, 1d; Morrisson BnF 43/Cp/AV/01; Ratto 1972; Sommer 43.2.2; SBCV 1819; Wroth BMC 2, aEF, weight 4.379 g, maximum diameter 24.8 mm, die axis 180o, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, 12 Nov 1028 - 11 Apr 1034; obverse + IhS XIS REX REGNANTInm (Jesus Christ King of Kings), Christ enthroned, wears nimbus cruciger, pallium, & colobium, raises hand, holds Gospels; reverse ΘCE bOHΘ RWMANW (god-bearer help the Romans), MΘ (mother of God) above center, nimbate Virgin (on right) wears pallium and maphorium, with right hand she crowns Romanus, who is bearded and wears a crown, saccos and loros, globus cruciger in his right, four pellets in loros end below globus; scarce; $760.00 SALE PRICE $684.00
Byzantine Empire, Constans II and Constantine IV, 13 April 654 - 15 July 668 A.D.
In 662, Constans II invaded south Italy. SH76119. Gold solidus, DOC IIpart 2, 30a; Morrison BnF 13/Cp/AV/55; Wroth BMC 53; Tolstoi 285; Hahn MIB 31A; Sommer 12.23; SBCV 964, Ratto -, EF, weight 4.432 g, maximum diameter 19.0 mm, die axis 180o, 1sst officina, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, c. 661 - 663 A.D.; obverse [legend fragmentary], facing busts of Constans & Constantine IV, Constans wears plumed helmet, Constantine a helmet with cross, small cross between heads; reverseVICTORIA AVGU A, cross potent on three steps between Heraclius (left) and Tiberius standing facing, each wears crown and chlamys and holds globus cruciger in right, CONOB in exergue; scarce; $750.00 SALE PRICE $675.00
Byzantine Empire, Nicephorus Basilacius, Usurper, Summer 1078 A.D. (Anonymous Class N Follis)
Until 1976 this type was regarded as anonymous (Class N) because neither of the two known specimens had a visible legend. In 1976, Grierson published a new specimen with a legend naming the ruler, Nicephorus (Grierson, P. "Nicephorus Bryennius or Nicephorus Basilacius?" in NumCirc LXXXIV.1 (January 1976), type a). There were two candidates, Nicephorus Bryennius and Nicephorus Basilacius, both usurpers, Bryennius in 1077 - 1078, and Basilacius in Thessalonica for a few months during 1078. In 1992, Roger Bland published an example with the legend on the obverse right side reading POCBAC, which has been accepted as proving this type was struck by Basilacius (Bland, R. "A Follis of Nicephorus Basilacius?" NC 1992, p. 175 ff. and pl. 36, B). Our coin has a different more complete but blundered and obscure inscription on the obverse right side. SH76553. Bronze follis, DOC III, part 2, p. 706, N.1 (anonymous class N follis); Grierson 1976, type a; Bland Basilacius pl. 36, B; SBCV 1903A; Sommer 58.1, VF, uneven strike as always for the type, overstruck (some of the type are overstruck on class D and E anonymous folles), weight 5.047 g, maximum diameter 26.8 mm, die axis 180o, Thessalonica (Salonika, Greece) mint, summer 1078 A.D.; obverse [+NIKHFW-PO]C BACI(LK?)E (a new legend variation!), facing bust of Christ, nimbuscross with plain arms, wearing tunic and himation, right hand raised in blessing, Gospels in left, barred IC - XC (Jesus Christ) flanking across field; reversepatriarchal cross on base; barred IC - XC / NI-KA (Jesus Christ conquers) in the quarters; extremely rare; $750.00 SALE PRICE $675.00
Byzantine Empire, Alexius I Comnenus, 4 April 1081 - 15 August 1118 A.D.
Plovdiv was originally a Thracian city before later becoming a Greek city, and then a major Roman city. In the Middle Ages, it retained its strategic regional importance, changing hands between the Byzantine and Bulgarian Empires. Around 1000 A.D., Philippopolis became the administrative seat of a newly created Byzantine thťma with the same name. In 1180, Aime de Varennes encountered the singing of Byzantine songs in the city that recounted the deeds of Alexander the Great and Philip of Macedonia, over 1300 years before. In 1364, the Ottoman Turks under Lala Shakhin Pasha seized Plovdiv. The Turks called the city Filibe, derived from "Philip."SH73347. Gold hyperpyron, DOC IV, part 1, 20o.1; Wroth BMC 3; Hendy pl. 5, 11; Sommer 59.29; SBCV 1935; Morrisson BnF -; Berk -; Ratto -, gVF, bold reverse, flattened, graffiti in reverse margin, weight 4.370 g, maximum diameter 32.3 mm, die axis 180o, Philippopolis (Plovdiv, Bulgaria) mint, 1092 - 1118 A.D.; obverse KE RO-HΘEI (Lord, help [Alexius]), IC - XC (Jesus Christ), Christ enthroned facing, wearing nimbus cruciger, pallium and colobium, raising right in benediction, gospels in left, double border; reverse A/ΛC/ZI/W / ∆CC/ ΠO/T - TW / KO/MNH/N (Z reversed, MNH ligate), Alexius standing facing, wearing chlamys, four jewels on collar, no jewels along the bottom edge of the chlamys, labarumscepter with no dot on shaft in right, globus cruciger in left, manus Dei (hand of God) above right; this is the first ever Byzantine coin from the Philippopolis mint handled by Forum!; extremely rare; $640.00 SALE PRICE $576.00
Byzantine Empire, Andronicus I, September 1183 - 12 September 1185 A.D.
In 1185, Henry II of England knighted his heir John and sent him to Ireland to enforce English control. It was a disaster which united the scorned Irish chieftains against a common enemy. By the end of the year, John returned to England in defeat. Nonetheless, Henry had him named King of Ireland by Pope Urban III and procured a golden crown with peacock feathers.BZ73348. Gold hyperpyron, DOC IV, part 1, 1; Hendy pl. 18, 9; Wroth BMC 1, Morrisson BnF 62/Cp/AV/1; Berk 355; Sommer 62.1, SBCV 1983; Ratto -, VF, double struck, creases in margins, perhaps once flattened then restored to syphate, weight 4.437 g, maximum diameter 30.8 mm, die axis 180o, Constantinople mint, Sep 1183 - 12 Sep 1185 A.D.; obverse the Virgin Mary seated facing on square-backed throne, nimbate, wearing pallium and maphorium; she holds before her the nimbatehead of the infant Christ, MP - ΘV (Mother of God) flanking her head; double border; reverse AN∆PONIKOC ∆εCΠOTHC, Andronicus (on left) and Christ standing facing, Andronicus, with forked beard, wears crown and loros, labarum in right, globus cruciger in left, Christ crowning him, wears nimbus and colobium, holds Gospels, IC - XC (Jesus Christ) flanking His head; very scarce; $600.00 SALE PRICE $540.00
Byzantine Empire, Focas, 23 November 602 - 5 October 610 A.D.
The Column of Phocas at Rome was erected before the Rostra and dedicated to the Emperor on 1 August 608. It was the last addition made to the Forum Romanum. The Corinthian column has a height of 13.6 m (44 ft). Both the column and the marble socle were recycled from earlier use. The gilded statue that was once on the column was probably a gift of gratitude from Smaragdus, who was indebted to the Phocas for ending his long exile and restoring his position of power at Ravenna. The column still stands in its original location, but the gold statue was probably taken down immediatly after Phocus' death.
SH70062. Gold solidus, DOC IIpart 1, 10f; Tolstoi 11; Ratto 1183; Hahn MIB 9; Sommer 9.8; SBCV 620; Wroth BMC -; Morrisson BnF -, aEF, slightly off center on a broad flan, weight 4.467 g, maximum diameter 20.9 mm, die axis 180o, 6th officina, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, 607 - 609 A.D.; obverse d N FOCASPERP AVC, draped and cuirassedbust facing, wearing crown without pendilia and holding cross in raised right; reverseVICTORIA AVGU S, angel standing facing, long staurogram staff in right, globus cruciger in left, CONOB in exergue; $580.00 SALE PRICE $522.00
Elagabalus, 16 May 218 - 11 March 222 A.D., Charachmoba, Arabia
Coins of Charachmoba (Kerak, Jordan today) were struck only for Elagabalus and are very rare. Kerak has been inhabited since at least the Iron Age. It was an important city for the Moabites. In the Bible it is called Qer Harreseth or Kir of Moab and was subject to the Assyrian empire; in the Books of Kings (16:9) and Book of Amos (1:5, 9:7), it is mentioned as the place where the Syrians went before they settled in the regions north of Palestine, and to which Tiglath-Pileser III sent the prisoners after the conquest of Damascus. It became important in the late Hellenistic Period, and eventually fell under Nabataean rule. Rome took it in 105 A.D., with support from the Arab Ghassanid tribe (who still live in there). Today Karak is best known for the crusader's Kerak Castle.RP72143. Bronze AE 23, Spijkerman 1; Rosenberger 1; BMC Arabia p. 27, 1; Sofaer p. 157 and pl. 134, 1; Meshorer City-Coins 276 var (retrograde rev leg); SNG ANS -, VF, nice green patina, a few pits, weight 7.750 g, maximum diameter 22.9 mm, die axis 135o, Charachmoba (Kerak, Jordan) mint, 16 May 218 - 11 Mar 222 A.D.; obverse AV K M AV ANTWNINO, laureate, draped and cuirassedbust right, from behind, flower (star?) in right field; reverse XAPAX MWBA, Tyche standing facing, head left, wearing kalathos, chiton, and mantle, holding rudder by tiller in right, cornucopia in left; none of the references mention the flower (or star) on the obverse, but it may have originally been present on most specimens; very rare; $550.00 SALE PRICE $495.00
Byzantine Empire, Constans II and Constantine IV, 13 April 654 - 15 July 668 A.D.
During Constans' reign the Islamic State expanded very quickly, in no small part because Christians and Jews often aided the Islamic take over of their lands. The Byzantine and Persian Empires both had imposed heavy taxes to finance the Byzantine-Sassanid Wars. In new territories, the Islamic State maintained the existing Byzantine or Persian tax collection systems, but the taxes were lowered and free trade encouraged commerce. Jews and the Christians were also allowed to use their own laws and have their own judges.SH70038. Gold solidus, Wroth BMC 51 - 52, DOC IIpart 2, 25j (not in the collection, refs BMC); Tolstoi 253; Hahn MIB 26; Sommer 12.18; SBCV 959, EF, weight 4.389 g, maximum diameter 19.2 mm, die axis 180o, 10th officina, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, 654 - 659 A.D.; obverse d N CONSTANTINuS C CONSTAN, facing busts of Constans & Constantine IV (beardless) each wearing crown and chlamys, cross between their heads; reverseVICTORIA AVGy I, cross potent on three steps, CONOB in exergue; $540.00 SALE PRICE $486.00
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