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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Byzantine Coins ▸ Macedonian Dynasty ▸ Constantine VIIIView Options:  |  |  | 

Constantine VIII, 10 January 976 - 11 November 1028 A.D.

Joint rule with Basil II (his brother), 10 January 976 - 15 December 1025 A.D.
Sole rule, 15 December 1025 A.D. - 11 November 1028 A.D.
Constantine VIII was crowned emperor when he was an infant; however, for his first 63 years of "rule" he was a junior emperor and rarely played even a minor role in in state affairs. He spent his life in search of pleasure and entertainment, including spectator sports at the Hippodrome, feasting, riding and hunting. After his brother Basil II died, Constantine was sole emperor for nearly the last three years of his life. He carried on as he always had, enjoying life and avoiding state business as much as possible. Ineffective and cruel, he allegedly ordered the execution or mutilation of hundreds of innocent men. He arranged the marriage of his daughter Zoe, and upon his death, Zoe's husband took the throne as Romanus III.


Byzantine Anonymous Follis of Christ, Class A3, Basil II & Constantine VIII, c. 1023 - 11 November 1028 A.D.

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This is a new ornaments variety, unlisted by Bellinger and Grierson, with one pellet in each limb of the nimbus cross, two pellets vertically arranged within a jeweled border on the Gospels and the ornamentation shown below under the reverse inscription. The ornamentation above the inscription is off flan but most likely the same as below. We have designated this new variety Grierson-NumisWiki ornaments F1c.


BZ86497. Bronze anonymous follis, Anonymous follis of Christ, class A3; SBCV 1818; Grierson-NumisWiki ornaments F1c, gVF, attractive bust of Christ, tight ragged flan, bumps and marks, edge chip, weight 8.514 g, maximum diameter 27.9 mm, die axis 270o, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, c. 1023 - 11 Nov 1028 A.D.; obverse + EMMANOVHL, facing bust of Christ, wearing nimbus cruciger, pallium, and colobium, holding gospels with both hands, IC - XC (Greek abbreviation for Jesus Christ) across field; reverse + IhSuS / XRISTuS / bASILEu / bASILE (Jesus Christ King of Kings), ornamentation above and below legend; unpublished variety; $300.00 SALE PRICE $270.00
 


Byzantine Anonymous Follis of Christ, Class A3, Basil II & Constantine VIII, c. 1023 - 11 November 1028 A.D.

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Possibly a provincial mint issue.
BZ77225. Bronze anonymous follis, Anonymous follis of Christ, class A3; SBCV 1818; Grierson-NumisWiki ornaments 32, aVF, nice patina, strike a weak and uneven, reverse a little off-center, weight 8.937 g, maximum diameter 30.1 mm, die axis 180o, provincial(?) mint, c. 1023 - 11 Nov 1028 A.D.; obverse + EMMANOVHL, facing nimbate bust of Christ, pallium and colobium, holding gospels with both hands, to left IC, to right XC; nimbus and Gospels ornamented with crosses; reverse + IhSuS / XRISTuS / bASILEu / bASILE (Jesus Christ King of Kings), cross above and below legend; $215.00 SALE PRICE $194.00
 


Byzantine Anonymous Follis of Christ, Class A3, Basil II & Constantine VIII, c. 1023 - 11 November 1028 A.D.

Click for a larger photo
The emperor's name and portrait are not part of the design on the Byzantine types referred to as anonymous folles. Instead of the earthly king, these coins depict Jesus Christ, King of Kings.
BZ86279. Bronze anonymous follis, Anonymous follis of Christ, class A3; SBCV 1818; Grierson-NumisWiki ornaments 47, gVF, attractive facing bust of Christ, tight flan, weight 11.941 g, maximum diameter 29.9 mm, die axis 180o, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, c. 1023 - 11 Nov 1028 A.D.; obverse + EMMANOVHL, facing nimbate bust of Christ, pallium and colobium, holding gospels with both hands, to left IC, to right XC; reverse + IhSuS / XRISTuS / bASILEu / bASILE (Jesus Christ King of Kings), square above and below legend; $200.00 SALE PRICE $180.00
 


Byzantine Anonymous Follis of Christ, Class A2, Basil II & Constantine VIII, 976 - 1025 A.D.

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The class A2 anonymous follis is identified by Wayne Sayles in "Ancient Coin Collecting V" as one of the masterpieces of Romaion coinage.
BZ83533. Bronze anonymous follis, Anonymous follis of Christ, class A2; SBCV 1813; Grierson-NumisWiki ornaments 4, VF, facial features fully struck and present, porous, light marks and corrosion, weight 14.154 g, maximum diameter 31.5 mm, die axis 180o, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, 10 Jan 976 - 15 Dec 1025 A.D.; obverse + EMMANOVHL, facing bust of Christ, wears nimbus cruciger ornamented with two pellets in each limb of cross, pallium, and colobium, Gospels in both hands, cover ornamented with a pellet in center and a jeweled border, to left IC, to right XC; reverse + IhSuS / XRISTuS / bASILEu / bASILE (Jesus Christ King of Kings) in four lines, pellet above, nothing below; $130.00 SALE PRICE $117.00
 







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REFERENCES

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 III, Part 2: Basil I to Nicephorus III, 867-1081. (Washington D.C., 1973).
Morrisson, C. Catalogue des Monnaies Byzantines de la Bibliothèque Nationale II, 711 - 1204. (Paris, 1970).
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 Monday, February 19, 2018.
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Byzantine Coins of Constantine VIII