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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Byzantine Coins ▸ Heraclean Dynasty ▸ Justinian IIView Options:  |  |  | 

Justinian II, 10 July 685 - Late 695 and Summer 705 - 4 November 711 A.D.

Joint rule with Tiberius (his son), 705 - 4 Nov 711 A.D.
Justinian II took the throne at the young age of sixteen. He achieved a peace treaty with the Arabs early in his reign and was able to make progress on the Balkan troubles. He was the first of the Byzantine emperors to put the likeness of Christ on his coinage. After ten years of rule, he was overthrown by the general Leontius; his tongue and nose were slit and he was exiled. In 705, Justinian II returned to Constantinople with an army of Bulgars and Slavs. He gained entrance to the city by climbing through an aqueduct pipe and with the advantage of surprise regained his throne. Both Leontius and Tiberius (who succeeded Leontius) were dragged through the streets in chains and beheaded. His revenge soon developed into a reign of terror. Rebellion started in the army and the general Bardanes was named Emperor. Justinian II and his son, Tiberius, age 6, were put to death.


Click for a larger photo
The only other example of this variant known to Forum is CNG auction 88, lot 1695 (misdescribed as an ordinary SBCV 1270). All other examples have the K below the H on the left, vice below the Λ on the right. Even the "normal" SBCV 1270 type is missing from the Dumbarton Oaks collection (DOC II 33 refs the Tolstoi coin) and described by Grierson as an extreme rarity.

The obverse monograms can probably be read to mean, "God-bearer [the Virgin Mary] help Justinian."
SH73338. Bronze follis, CNG auction 88, lot 1695 (described as SBCV 1270); cf. SBCV 1270, Tolstoi 81, DOC II 33, Morrisson BnF 15/Ct/AE/03, Hahn MIB 56 (all K below H left), gVF, weight 3.187 g, maximum diameter 19.5 mm, die axis 180o, Carthage mint, 1st reign, c. 694 - 695 A.D.(?); obverse no legend, Justinian standing facing, wearing crown with cross and chlamys, globus cruciger in right, akakia in left, cruciform monogram (ΘEOTOKE BOHΘEI?) left, cruciform Justinian monogram right; reverse no legend, large M (40 nummi), monogram above, H (year 8?) left, Λ over K right, KΓω in exergue; extreme rarity, 2nd known; $940.00 (€836.60)
 


Click for a larger photo
SH28910. Gold solidus, DOC II, part 2, 7; Wroth BMC 11; Tolstoi 27; Ratto 1682; Morrisson BnF 15/Cp/AV/4; Hahn MIB 8; SBCV 1248, near Mint State, fully lustrous, broad and well centered flan for the type, very rarely this nice!, weight 4.423 g, maximum diameter 19.3 mm, die axis 180o, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, 1st reign, 685 - 695 A.D.; obverse IhS CRISTOS REX RETNANTIVM, bust of Christ facing with long hair and full beard, cross behind, right raised, Gospels in left; reverse IVSTINIANVS SERV CHRISTI, Justinian standing facing, wearing crown and loros, cross potent on three steps in right, akakia in left, CONO in exergue; SOLD


Byzantine Empire, Justinian II, 10 July 685 - Late 695 and Summer 705 - 4 November 711 A.D., Portrait of Christ

Click for a larger photo
The portrait on this coin was based on an icon believed by the people of the time to bear a miraculous resemblance to Christ's actual appearance.
SH73339. Gold solidus, DOC II, part 2, 2nd reign, 2b; Wroth BMC 1; Morrisson BnF 15/Cp/AV/12; Tolstoi 2; Ratto 1705; Hahn MIB 2b; Sommer 17.3; SBCV 1415, EF, lustrous, nearly as struck, weight 4.365 g, maximum diameter 20.418 mm, die axis 0o, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, 2nd reign, 705 - 711 A.D.; obverse O N IhS ChS REX - REGNANTIYM, bust of Christ facing, curly hair, short beard, wearing pallium and colobium, Gospels in left, cross behind head; reverse IYSTINIANYS ET TIbERIYS PP A, Justinian (on left) and Tiberius, half-length facing, each wears crown, divitision and chlamys, holding cross potent on three steps in center; for this extraordinary type, since 2000 only 16 auction sales are recorded on Coin Archives Pro; rare; SOLD







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REFERENCES

Adelson, H. Light Weight Solidi and Byzantine Trade during the Sixth and Seventh Centuries. ANSNNM 138. (New York, 1957).
Anastasi, M. Monete Bizantine di Sicilia. (NP, 2009).
Berk, H.J. Eastern Roman Successors of the Sestertius. (Chicago, 1987).
Berk, H.J. Roman Gold Coins of the Medieval World, 383 - 1453 A.D. (Joliet, IL, 1986).
Grierson, P. Byzantine Coins. (London, 1982).
Grierson, P. Catalogue of the Byzantine Coins in the Dumbarton Oaks Collection and in the Whittemore Collection: Vol. 2, Part 2: Heraclius Constantine to Theodosius III. (Washington, D.C., 1968).
Hahn, W. Moneta Imperii Byzantini, Volume 3: Heraclius - Leo III (610 - 720). (Vienna, 1981).
Hahn, W. and M.A. Metlich. Money of the Insipient Byzantine Empire. (Vienna, 2000).
Hendy, M. Coinage and Money in the Byzantine Empire 1081-1261. (Washington D.C., 1969).
Hennequin, G. Catalogue des monnaies musulmanes de la Bibliotheque Nationale. (Paris, 1985).
Metlich, M. A. The Coinage of Ostrogothic Italy. (London, 2004).
Morrisson, C. Catalogue des Monnaies Byzantines de la Bibliothèque Nationale I, 491 - 711. (Paris, 1970).
Ranieri, E. La monetazione di Ravenna antica dal V all' VIII secolo: impero romano e bizantino, regno ostrogoto e langobardo. (Bologna, 2006).
Ratto, R. Monnaies Byzantines et d'autre Pays contemporaines à l'époque byzantine. (Lugano, 1930).
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).
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 Sunday, April 30, 2017.
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Byzantine Coins of Justinian II