Kingdom of Sicily, Frederick II (HRE), 1198 - 1250
Frederick II was one of the most powerful Holy Roman Emperors of the Middle Ages. At two he was crowned King of Sicily, co-ruler with his mother Constance, the daughter of Roger II of Sicily. In 1220, he was made King of the Romans, and as such, King of Germany, of Italy, and of Burgundy. He became King of Jerusalem through marriage and the Sixth Crusade. Due to frequent disputes with the Papacy, he was excommunicated four times and Pope Gregory IX called him the Antichrist. An avid patron of science and the arts, he spoke Latin, Sicilian, German, French, Greek and Arabic.ME66343. Billon denaro, MIR 10 292 (R), MEC Italy III 566, Biaggi 470 (NC), Choice VF, weight 0.951 g, maximum diameter 17.4 mm, die axis 45o, Brindisi mint, 1247 - 1248; obverse + ROM INPERATOR (INP ligate), FR in center, --- above, six pointed star below; reverse + R IERSL' ET SICL', circle upon cross pattée; rare; $110.00 (€95.70)
Kingdom of Sicily, Frederick II (HRE), 1197 - 1250
Frederick was born in Catania. In his youth, his reign was under the control of powerful Sicilian barons, and was plagued by wars with the Kingdom of Naples and by the Black Death, which killed his elder brother and predecessor. In 1372 he was able to come to peace terms with Naples and Pope Gregory IX. ME66347. Billon denaro, MIR 10 290 (NC), MEC Italy III 560, Biaggi 464 (NC), Choice VF, nice green patina, weight 0.765 g, maximum diameter 16.9 mm, die axis 315o, Brindisi mint, 1245; obverse + F•ROMANOR VM, IMPR (IMP ligate) in center with double suspension mark above; reverse +IERSL'•ET•SICIL'•R•, cross pattée, crescent in each quarter; $110.00 (€95.70)
Kingdom of Sicily, Henry VI (HRE), 1194 - 1197
Henry VI was King of Germany from 1190 - 1197, Holy Roman Emperor from 1191 - 1197, and King of Sicily from 1194 - 1197. In 1197, his German soldiers mercilessly suppressed a revolt in Italy, especially in southern Sicily. In this same year, Henry prepared for a Crusade, but, on 28 September, he died of malaria (or he may have been poisoned) in Messina. His son, Frederick II, inherited both the Kingdom of Sicily and the Imperial crown.ME66349. Billon denaro, MIR 10 256 (NC), MEC Italy III 485, Biaggi 434 (NC), VF, nice green patina, weight 0.792 g, maximum diameter 17.4 mm, die axis 135o, Brindisi mint, 1194 - 1196; obverse HE •INPERATOR (HE ligate), cross pattée, six pointed star in the third and fourth quarters; reverse C INPERATRIX•, Ω (suspension mark) over A•P; rare; $110.00 (€95.70)
Byzantine Empire, Maurice Tiberius, 13 August 582 - 22 November 602 A.D.
By 602, Maurice ordered the troops to stay beyond the Danube over winter, but they revolted and marched back to Constantinople under the leadership of Phocas. On 27 November, Maurice was captured trying to escape, he was forced to witness the slaughter of his five sons and all his supporters, and was beheaded. His wife, Constantina and his three daughters were spared, and sent to a monastery. Phocas was proclaimed the emperor.BZ69192. Bronze decanummium, Anastasi 24c, DOC I 281, Hahn MIBE 140, Wroth BMC 249, Tolstoi 306, Ratto 1169, Sommer 7.100, SBCV 583, F, weight 3.225 g, maximum diameter 15.4 mm, die axis 180o, Syracuse mint, 588 - 602 A.D.; obverse D N mAVRIC - TIb P P AVC (or similar), helmeted, draped, and cuirassed bust facing, helmet with crest and pendilia, globus cruciger in right; reverse large X (10 nummi), SE-CI-LI-A in angles; $110.00 (€95.70)
Kingdom of Sicily, Charles of Anjou, 1266 - 1285
Charles received the Kingdom of Sicily as a papal grant but had to take it by force from the Hohenstaufen. In 1282, he was expelled from Sicily by rebellion. He continued to claim the island, but ruled only the peninsula from his capital at Naples. By conquest he became King of Albania in 1272, by purchase King of Jerusalem in 1277, and he inherited the Principality of Achaea in 1278.ME70461. Billon denaro, MIR 10 353 (R), Biaggi 497 (R), MEC Italy III 650, Spahr 47, VF, nice green patina, weight 0.903 g, maximum diameter 16.8 mm, Brindisi mint, early coinage, 1266 - 1278; obverse + K DEI GRA REX SICIL', large lis above narrow crescent with horns up; reverse + DVC APVL' ET PRNC CAP, cross fleury; rare; $110.00 (€95.70)
Byzantine Empire, Leo V the Armenian and Constantine, 25 December 813 - 25 December 820 A.D.
In 815, Leo concluded a 30-year peace treaty with Khan Omurtag of Bulgaria. The treaty was honored by both sides and renewed after the accession of Michael II in 820. In 821, Thomas the Slav rebelled and laid siege to Constantinople to seize the Imperial throne. Omurtag sent an army to help Michael II put down the rebellion. Byzantine accounts report that Thomas' army was routed at the Battle of Kedouktos (winter 822 or spring 823), however, modern scholars consider the battle a victory, albeit costly, for the rebel.BZ65995. Bronze follis, Anastasi 497; DOC III, part 1, 19; SBCV 1635, gVF, typical tight flan, weight 3.267 g, maximum diameter 18.3 mm, die axis 0o, Syracuse mint, 817 - 820 A.D.; obverse facing busts of Leo, on left, with short beard and Constantine, each wears crown and chlamys, cross between above; reverse Λ•K (initials of Leon and Konstantine), cross above; $105.00 (€91.35)
Kingdom of Sicily, Manfred von Hohenstaufen, 1258 - 1266
Manfred was frequently in conflict with the Papacy and was excommunicated by three different popes. In the Divine Comedy, Dante meets Manfred outside the gates of Purgatory, where the spirit explains that, although he repented of his sins in the moment of death, he must atone by waiting 30 years for each year he lived as an excommunicate, before being admitted to Purgatory proper. Queen Elizabeth is a descendant of King Manfred.ME66670. Billon denaro apulo, Biaggi 485 (R), MIR Sicily 326 (R), Travaini 66, MEC Italy III - (discussed on p. 193, type 2), VF, weight 0.597 g, maximum diameter 14.9 mm, die axis 180o, Brindisi(?) mint, 1258 - c. 1263; obverse +• MANFREDVS•, gothic APl monogram, three pellets around, within inner border; reverse + REX• SICILIE•, cross pattée, wedge in each angle; rare; $105.00 (€91.35)
Normans, Kingdom of Sicily, William II, 1166 - 1189 A.D.
The Normans entered Sicily and southern Italy in order to fight the Byzantines and Arabs. They conquered the land and after long wars, they established a powerful kingdom that had to be recognized by the Pope.ME68290. Bronze 3 follaro, MEC Italy III 425 ff., Travaini 166 ff., Biaggi 1231, aVF, weight 10.409 g, maximum diameter 24.0 mm, die axis 0o, Messina mint, second copper coinage; obverse facing lion head mask; reverse palm tree with dates; $105.00 (€91.35)
Byzantine Empire, Heraclius & Heraclius Constantine, 23 January 613 - 11 January 641 A.D.
Heraclius offered peace to Khusro, presumably in 624, threatening otherwise to invade Persia, but Khusro rejected the offer. Heraclius marched into Persia with an army of probably less than 25,000 men, willingly abandoning any attempt to secure his rear or maintain lines of communication. Heraclius fought brilliantly and bravely repeatedly defeated the Persian forces. When the war ended in 628, Khusro had been murdered by his own men, the Byzantines regained all their lost territories, their captured soldiers, a war indemnity, and most importantly for them, the True Cross and other relics that were lost in Jerusalem in 614.BZ64050. Bronze dekanummium, Anastasi 62; DOC II part 1, 257; Wroth BMC 410; SBCV 886; Hahn MIB 241, VF, pit (flan defect?) on reverse, weight 5.067 g, maximum diameter 10.0 mm, die axis 180o, Sicily, Catania mint, 625 - 626 A.D.; obverse facing busts of Heraclius on left, bearded, and Heraclius Constantine on right, beardless; both crowned, draped and cuirassed; cross between their heads; reverse large I (10 nummi), ANNO right, X/ς (year 16) right, CAT in exergue; scarce; $100.00 (€87.00)
Kingdom of Sicily, Frederick II (HRE), 1198 - 1250
Frederick II was one of the most powerful Holy Roman Emperors of the Middle Ages. At two he was crowned King of Sicily, co-ruler with his mother Constance, the daughter of Roger II of Sicily. In 1220, he was made King of the Romans, and as such, King of Germany, of Italy, and of Burgundy. He became King of Jerusalem through marriage and the Sixth Crusade. Due to frequent disputes with the Papacy, he was excommunicated four times and Pope Gregory IX called him the Antichrist. An avid patron of science and the arts, he spoke Latin, Sicilian, German, French, Greek and Arabic.ME66346. Billon denaro, MEC Italy III 549, MIR 282 (NC), Biaggi 455 (NC), Spahr 121, VF, porous, weight 0.533 g, maximum diameter 17.6 mm, die axis 45o, Brindisi mint, 1239; obverse F•- IM-PER-ATO-R•, long cross intersecting legend; reverse R•I-ER'-ET•S-ICL'•, crowned head superimposed at center on long cross intersecting legend; $100.00 (€87.00)
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