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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Byzantine Coins ▸ Isaurian DynastyView Options:  |  |  |   

Byzantine Coins of the Isaurian Dynasty

Byzantine Empire, Nicephorus I and Stauracius, December 803 - 25 July 811 A.D.

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Nicephorus, the logothete (lord high treasurer) under Empress Irene, gained rule in a palace coup. At the Battle of Pliska, the Bulgarian Khan, Krum, surprised and slew Nicephorus along with a large portion of the Byzantine army. Krum is said to have made a drinking-cup of Nicephorus' skull. Stauracius escaped the battle to Constantinople but was mortally wounded. He surrendered his throne to his brother-in-law, retired to a monastery, and died soon after.
SH83915. Gold solidus, DOC III, part 1, 2c.2; Wroth BMC 8; Tolstoi 9; Ratto 1786; Berk Gold 238; Sommer 27.1; SBCV 1604, EF, lustrous, well centered on a tight flan, weight 4.349 g, maximum diameter 20.1 mm, die axis 180o, 10th officina, Constantinople mint, 803 - 811 A.D.; obverse hICI-FOROS bASILE', bearded facing bust of Nicephorus, wearing chlamys and cross with crown, cross potent on base in right hand, akakia in left hand, no pellet left; reverse STAVRA-CIS dESPO' X, unbearded facing bust of Stauracius, wearing chlamys and cross with crown, globus cruciger in right hand, akakia in left hand; from the Robert Watcher Collection, ex Heritage CICF auction (Chicago, Apr 2013), lot 3024 ($940 plus fees); scarce; $1130.00 (1005.70)


Byzantine Empire, Theophilus, 12 May 821 - 20 January 842 A.D.

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Most references date this type to the joint reign of Michael II and his son Theophilus II (12 May 821 - 2 Oct 829 A.D.) Anastasi identified it as Theophilus' first issue after Michael's death (2 Oct 829 - 830 A.D.).

Theophilus was an accomplished scholar and highly cultured. Although he admired Arab art and civilization, he was obliged to expend much effort defending his eastern frontier against Mutasim, the Caliph of Baghdad. He died of dysentery.
SH83908. Gold solidus, DOC III, part 1, 15a; Anastasi 515c; Wroth BMC 11; Tolstoi 13; SBCV 1646; Sommer 30.6; Morrisson BnF -; Ratto -, VF, slightly irregular tight flan, weight 3.794 g, maximum diameter 13.4 mm, die axis 180o, Syracuse mint, 829 - 830 A.D.; obverse MI-XAHL bA, bearded facing bust of Michael, wearing chlamys and crown with cross, globus cruciger in right hand; reverse ΘE-OFILO bA, beardless facing bust of Theophilus, wearing loros and crown with cross, cross potent in right hand; from the Robert Watcher Collection; very rare; $990.00 (881.10)


Byzantine Empire, Michael II and Theophilus, 12 May 821 - 2 October 829 A.D.

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Michael II started his career as a humble soldier. Leo V's assassination while trying to impose iconoclasm probably taught Michael a lesson, as he chose to remain religiously neutral. With Bulgarian help, he defeated the usurper Thomas, who with his Arab allies even besieged Constantinople for one year. Even after the rebellion was crushed, the Arabs still occupied Crete and initiated an invasion of Sicily.
SH83906. Gold tremissis, Morrisson BnF 31/Cp/AV/2 corr. (solidi); Anastasi 511; DOC III 18 (not in collection, refs BnF); SBCV 1650; BMC -; Sommer -; Tolstoi -; Ratto -, EF, tight flan, weight 1.275 g, maximum diameter 12.8 mm, die axis 180o, Syracuse mint, 821 - 829 A.D.; obverse MI-XAHL bA, bearded facing bust of Michael, wearing chlamys and crown with cross, globus cruciger in right hand; reverse ΘE-OFILO b, bearded facing bust of Theophilus, wearing chlamys and crown with cross, cross potent in right hand, cross in right field; from the Robert Watcher Collection, ex Savoca Numismatik; very rare; $810.00 (720.90)


Byzantine Empire, Theophilus, 12 May 821 - 20 January 842 A.D.

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Theophilus was an accomplished scholar and highly cultured. Although he admired Arab art and civilization, he was obliged to expend much effort defending his eastern frontier against Mutasim, the Caliph of Baghdad. He died of dysentery.
BZ76335. Bronze follis, Anastasi 554b; Spahr 413; SBCV 1680; DOC III, part 1, 29; Sommer 31.13, Nice VF, broad heavy flan for the type, nice green patina, weight 5.418 g, maximum diameter 19.9 mm, die axis 180o, Sicily, Syracuse mint, 831 - 835 A.D.; obverse ΘEOFIL bAS, crowned bust facing, wearing loros, cross potent in right; reverse MIXHAL S CONST, facing busts of Michael II (left) and Constantine, each wears crown and chlamys, star above center; rare this size; $310.00 (275.90)


Byzantine Empire, Leo V and Constantine, 25 December 813 - 25 December 820 A.D.

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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.
BZ76324. Bronze follis, Anastasi 497; DOC III, part 1, 19; Morrisson BnF 30/Sy/AE/01; Wroth BMC 22; Tolstoi 22; Ratto 1803; SBCV 1635; Sommer 29.7, gVF, well centered on an oval flan, light marks and porosity, weight 3.886 g, maximum diameter 22.4 mm, die axis 180o, Syracuse mint, 817 - 25 Dec 820 A.D.; obverse facing busts of Leo, on left, with short beard and Constantine, each wears crown and chlamys, cross between above; reverse ΛK (initials of Leon and Konstantine), cross above; $270.00 (240.30)


Byzantine Empire, Theophilus, 12 May 821 - 20 January 842 A.D.

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Some regard Theophilus as one of the best Byzantine emperors, others as an ordinary and insignificant ruler. He certainly did his best to check corruption and oppression. His personal leadership in battle indicates he was not afraid to command and put his life alongside that of his soldiers. Despite the drain of war and the large sums spent on building, commerce, and industry, the finances of the Empire flourished, largely due to highly efficient administration. He strengthened the Walls of Constantinople and built a hospital, which continued in existence until the twilight of the Empire.
BZ71131. Bronze half follis, Anastasi 562; Ratto 1837; DOC III, part 1, 29c (follis); SBCV 1680 (follis); Spahr 414 (follis); Sommer 31.14 (follis); Trivero -; Calciati MBBS -, VF, typical tight flan and uneven strike, "emaciated face" style variant, weight 1.821 g, maximum diameter 16.9 mm, die axis 180o, Syracuse mint, 835 - 20 Jan 842; obverse ΘEOFIL bAS, bust facing, wearing domed crown, loros, cross potent in right; reverse + MIXHAL S CONST, facing busts of Michael II (left) and Constantine, each wears domed crown and chlamys, star above center; $110.00 (97.90)


Byzantine Empire, Constantine V and Leo IV, 6 June 751 - 14 September 775 A.D.

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Constantine V was a successful military commander, defeating Bulgarians and Umayyad Muslims. Unfortunately his iconoclast policies diminished Byzantine influence in the West and he lost Ravenna to the Lombards in 751 A.D.
BZ76325. Bronze follis, Anastasi 434; DOC III, part 1, 19; Wroth BMC 35, Tolstoi 53, Ratto 1757, SBCV 1569, VF, nice nice green patina, usual crowed flan, weight 2.546 g, maximum diameter 20.2 mm, die axis 180o, Syracuse mint, 757 - 14 Sep 775 A.D.; obverse K - ΛE/O/N, Constantine V and Leo IV, each stand facing wearing crown and chlamys and holding akakia, cross between heads; reverse Λ/E/O/N - ∆/E/C/Π, Leo III standing facing, bearded, wearing crown and chlamys, cross potent in right hand; $105.00 (93.45)


Byzantine Empire, Theophilus, 12 May 821 - 20 January 842 A.D.

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Theophilus was an accomplished scholar and highly cultured. Although he admired Arab art and civilization, he was obliged to expend much effort defending his eastern frontier against Mutasim, the Caliph of Baghdad. He died of dysentery.
BZ71126. Bronze half follis, Anastasi 555; SBCV 1680 (follis); DOC III, part 1, 29 (follis); Trivero 124 (follis); Sommer 31.13 (follis); Spahr -; Calciati MBBS -, F, weight 1.975 g, maximum diameter 19.5 mm, die axis 180o, Syracuse mint, 831 - 835 A.D.; obverse ΘEOFILOS bAS, crowned bust facing, wearing loros, cross potent in right; reverse + MIXHAL S COhST, facing busts of Michael II (left) and Constantine, each wears crown and chlamys, star above; $80.00 (71.20)


Byzantine Empire, Constantine V and Leo IV, 6 June 751 - 14 September 775 A.D.

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Constantine V was a successful military commander, defeating Bulgarians and Umayyad Muslims. Unfortunately his iconoclast policies diminished Byzantine influence in the West and he lost Ravenna to the Lombards in 751 A.D.
BZ76313. Bronze follis, Anastasi 434; DOC III, part 1, 19; Wroth BMC 35, Tolstoi 53, Ratto 1757, SBCV 1569, VF, well centered on a tight flan cutting off most the inscriptions, green patina, scratches, weight 2.272 g, maximum diameter 19.1 mm, Syracuse mint, 757 - 14 Sep 775 A.D.; obverse K - ΛE/O/N, Constantine V and Leo IV, each stand facing wearing crown and chlamys and holding akakia, cross between heads; reverse Λ/E/O/N - ∆/E/C/Π, Leo III standing facing, bearded, wearing crown and chlamys, cross potent in right hand; $75.00 (66.75)


Byzantine Empire, Leo V the Armenian and Constantine, 25 December 813 - 25 December 820 A.D.

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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; Morrisson BnF 30/Sy/AE/01; Wroth BMC 22; Tolstoi 22; Ratto 1803; SBCV 1635; Sommer 29.7, gVF, typical tight flan, weight 3.267 g, maximum diameter 18.3 mm, die axis 0o, Syracuse mint, 817 - 25 Dec 820 A.D.; obverse facing busts of Leo, on left, with short beard and Constantine, each wears crown and chlamys, cross between above; reverse ΛK (initials of Leon and Konstantine), cross above; $70.00 (62.30)




  







Catalog current as of Monday, April 24, 2017.
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Isaurian Dynasty