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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.
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, cf. DOC IV-1 1; Morrisson BnF 61/Cp/AV/13; CLBC I 4.1.1; Grierson 1079; SBCV 1956; Sommer 61.1, gVF, weight 4.27 g, maximum diameter 29.4 mm, die axis 180o, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, obverse + KE RO-HΘEI, bust of Christ facing, beardless, wearing numbus cr., pallium and colobium, raising right hand in benediction, scroll in left hand, IC - XC (Greek abbreviation: Jesus Christ) flanking above shoulders; 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
Saint George (d. April 23, 303) was a Roman soldier from Anatolia, who was venerated as a Christian martyr. Immortalized in the tale of George and the Dragon, he is the patron saint of England, Greece, Portugal, Russia, and many other countries, cities and organizations. -- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saint_GeorgeSH56037. Bronze half tetarteron, Morrisson BnF 61/Th/AE/09; DOC IV-1 18 var. (legend arrangement); CLBC I 4.4.5; Grierson 1101; SBCV 1975; Sommer 61.19, Choice gVF, weight 6.603 g, maximum diameter 21.6 mm, die axis 180o, Thessalonica (Salonika, Greece) mint, 1152 - c. 1160 A.D.; obverse Θ / Γ/ε−ωP/ΓI/Oς (WR ligate), nimbatebust of St. George facing, beardless, wearing tunic, cuirass, and sagion, spear in right, shield in left; reverse MANYH−Λ ∆εC, Manuel, bust facing, wearing crown and loros, labarum headed scepter in right, globus cruciger in left; oversized flan (normally 4.0 - 4.5 grams), fantastic for the type; SOLD
Gibbons Decline & Fall says of Manuel I, "The first in the charge, the last in the retreat, his friends and his enemies alike trembled, the former for his safety, and the latter for their own."BZ38048. Electrum aspron trachy, DOC IV-1 2a; Morrisson BnF 61/Cp/El/1; Wroth BMC 17; Ratto 2117; Hendin pl. 13, 1; SBCV 1957; Sommer 61.2, EF, cracked, weight 4.331 g, maximum diameter 33.3 mm, die axis 180o, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, 1st coinage, c. 1143 - 1152 A.D.; obverseIC - XC (Greek abbreviation: Jesus Christ) OEMMANVOHΛ, facing bust of Christ, bearded, facing, pallium, colobium, Gospels in left; reverse MANOYHΛ ∆ECΠ (or similar), Virgin Marynimbate standing on right wears pallium and maphorium, crowns emperor with right hand, Manuel standing on left, wears divitision, loros, and chlamys, holds labarum and akakia; SOLD
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Sear, D. Byzantine Coins and Their Values. (London, 1987).
Sommer, A. Die Münzen des Byzantinischen Reiches 491-1453. Mit einem Anhang: Die Münzen des Kaiserreichs von Trapezunt. (Regenstauf, 2010).
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Wroth, W. Catalogue of the Imperial Byzantine Coins in the British Museum. (London, 1908).
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