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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Roman Coins| ▸ |Roman Mints| ▸ |Thessalonica||View Options:  |  |  | 

Thessalonica, Macedonia (Salonika, Greece)

King Cassander of Macedonia founded Thessalonica in 315 B.C. He named it after his wife Thessalonike, a half-sister of Alexander the Great. The Romans made Thessalonica the capital of the Roman province of Macedonia 168 B.C. In 50 A.D., the Apostle Paul founded the second Christian church on the European continent at Thessalonica and sent it his "Epistles to the Thessalonians." In 379 when the Roman Prefecture of Illyricum was divided between the East and West Roman Empires, Thessaloniki became the capital of the new Prefecture of Illyricum. The city remained important in the Byzantine Empire. [Dates of operation: 298 or 299 - c. 460 (closed during the reign of Leo I, 457 - 474). Mintmarks: COM, COMOB, OES, SMTS, TE, TES, TESOB, TH, THES, THS, THSOB, TS, T Christogram E.

Byzantine Empire, Nicephorus Basilacius, Usurper, Summer 1078 A.D., Anonymous Class N Follis

|Nicephorus| |Basilacius|, |Byzantine| |Empire,| |Nicephorus| |Basilacius,| |Usurper,| |Summer| |1078| |A.D.,| |Anonymous| |Class| |N| |Follis||follis|NEW
Until 1976 this type was regarded as anonymous (Class N) because neither of the two known specimens had a visible legend. In 1976, Grierson published a new specimen with a legend naming the ruler, Nicephorus (Grierson, P. "Nicephorus Bryennius or Nicephorus Basilacius?" in NumCirc LXXXIV.1 (January 1976), type a). There were two candidates, Nicephorus Bryennius and Nicephorus Basilacius, both usurpers, Bryennius in 1077 - 1078, and Basilacius in Thessalonica for a few months during 1078. In 1992, Roger Bland published an example with the legend on the obverse right side reading POCBAC, which has been accepted as proving this type was struck by Basilacius (Bland, R. "A Follis of Nicephorus Basilacius?" NC 1992, p. 175 ff. and pl. 36, B). Our coin has a different more complete but blundered and obscure inscription on the obverse right side.
BZ99035. Bronze follis, DOC III-2 p. 706, N.1 (anonymous class N follis); Grierson 1976, type a; Bland Basilacius pl. 36, B; SBCV 1903A (Ex. Rare); Sommer 58.1, F, uneven strike, overstruck with strong undertype effects, weight 5.863 g, maximum diameter 30.7 mm, Thessalonica (Salonika, Greece) mint, summer 1078 A.D.; obverse +NIKHΦW-POC BACIΛE (or similar), facing bust of Christ, nimbus cross with plain arms, wearing tunic and himation, right hand raised in blessing, Gospels in left, IC-XC flanking across field; reverse patriarchal cross on base; IC-XC / NI-KA (Jesus Christ conquers) in the quarters; from a Las Vegas dealer; extremely rare; $800.00 SALE PRICE $720.00


Byzantine Empire, Alexius III Angelus-Comnenus, 8 April 1195 - 17 July 1203

|Alexius| |III|, |Byzantine| |Empire,| |Alexius| |III| |Angelus-Comnenus,| |8| |April| |1195| |-| |17| |July| |1203||tetarteron|NEW
According to the Golden Legend, a plague-bearing dragon lived in a lake near a city called Silene, in Libya. To appease the dragon, the people fed it two sheep every day. When the sheep failed, they fed it their children, chosen by lottery. It happened that the lot fell on the king's daughter, Sabra. Sabra was sent out to the lake, dressed as a bride, to be fed to the dragon. Saint George was ridding past when dragon reared out of the lake. He fortified himself with the Sign of the Cross charged it on horseback with his lance, and gave it a grievous wound. He then called to the princess to throw him her girdle. After he put it around its neck, the dragon followed the girl like a meek beast on a leash. The princess and Saint George led the dragon back to the city of Silene. It terrified the people at its approach, but Saint George called out to them, saying that if they consented to become Christians and be baptized, he would slay the dragon. The king and the people converted to Christianity and George slew the dragon. On the site where the dragon died, the king built a church to the Blessed Virgin Mary and Saint George, and from its altar a spring arose whose waters cured all disease.
BZ99288. Bronze tetarteron, DOC IV-1 5a.2; CLBC I 8.4.3; Morrison BnF 1; Hendy p. 152 & pl. 23, 9; Wroth BMC 39; Grierson 1138; Ratto 2214; SBCV 2015; Sommer 66.6, F, near black patina, tight square flan, some corrosion, weight 4.411 g, maximum diameter 19.3 mm, die axis 180o, Thessalonica (Salonika, Greece) mint, 8 Apr 1195 - 17 Jul 1203; obverse half-length facing bust of St. George, beardless and nimbate, wearing military attire: cuirass and sagion, transverse spear in right hand, left hand resting on hilt of sword, O / ΓE/WP-ΓI/OC (in columns in left and right fields); reverse AΛEΣIOC - ∆ECΠOTHC (or similar), half length figure of Alexius standing facing, wearing crown, divitision, and chlamys, labarum in right hand, globus cruciger in left hand; from the S. Lindner Collection; rare; $140.00 SALE PRICE $126.00


Maximinus II Daia, Late 309 - 30 April 313 A.D.

|Maximinus| |II|, |Maximinus| |II| |Daia,| |Late| |309| |-| |30| |April| |313| |A.D.||follis|
Thessalonica was founded around 315 B.C. by Cassander, King of Macedonia, on or near the site of the ancient town of Therma. He named it after his wife Thessalonike, a daughter of Philip II and a half-sister of Alexander the Great. In 168 B.C. it became the capital of Macedonia Secunda and in 146 B.C. it was made the capital of the whole Roman province of Macedonia. Due to its port and location at the intersection of two major Roman roads, Thessalonica grew to become the most important city in Macedonia. Thessalonica was important in the spread of Christianity; the First Epistle to the Thessalonians written by Paul the Apostle is the first written book of the New Testament.
RT97955. Billon follis, Hunter V p. 97, 25 (also 2nd officina) RIC VI Thessalonica 61a; SRCV IV 14882; Cohen VII 126, gVF, double strike in the reverse legend, flan shape slightly irregular, weight 3.608 g, maximum diameter 25.6 mm, die axis 0o, 2nd officina, Thessalonica (Salonika, Greece) mint, 312 - 313 A.D.; obverse IMP C MAXIMINVS P F AVG, laureate, draped and cuirassed bust right; reverse IOVI CONSERVATORI AVGG NN (to Jove the protector of our two Emperors), Jupiter standing left, nude but for cloak over left shoulder and arm, Victory on globe in right hand, scepter in left hand, eagle at feet left with wreath in beak, TSB in exergue; $75.00 SALE PRICE $67.50


Byzantine Empire, Andronicus II Palaeologus, 1282 - 24 May 1328 A.D.

|Andronicus| |II|, |Byzantine| |Empire,| |Andronicus| |II| |Palaeologus,| |1282| |-| |24| |May| |1328| |A.D.||trachy|NEW
Under Andronicus II the empire permanently declined. His grandson, Andronicus III, rebelled and defeated him. He was forced to abdicate, retired as a monk and died 13 Feb 1332.
BZ98880. Bronze trachy, DOC V 789; B-D LPC p. 224, 32; Bendall PCPC 239; Grierson 1454; SBCV 2393; Sommer 79.31; Lianta 679, aVF, scyphate, dark near black patina, long crack, irregularly shaped flan, weight 1.185 g, maximum diameter 22.9 mm, die axis 0o, Thessalonica (Salonika, Greece) mint, 1282 - 24 May 1328 A.D.; obverse large six-petal flower; reverse Andronicus standing facing, holding a large B in each hand (the left B reversed); scarce; $70.00 SALE PRICE $63.00


Licinius I, 11 November 308 - 18 September 324 A.D.

|Licinius| |I|, |Licinius| |I,| |11| |November| |308| |-| |18| |September| |324| |A.D.||follis|
In 312, Constantine I forged an alliance with his co-emperor Licinius, and offered him his half-sister Constantia in marriage.
RT97961. Billon follis, Hunter V 89 (also 4th officina), RIC VI Thessalonica 60, SRCV V 15251, VF, traces of silvering, porosity, minor lamination defects, weak center strike, tight flan, weight 3.700 g, maximum diameter 22.8 mm, die axis 0o, 4th officina, Thessalonica (Salonika, Greece) mint, 312 - 313 A.D.; obverse IMP LIC LICINIVS P F AVG, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse IOVI CONSERVATORI AVGG NN (to Jove the protector of our two Emperors), Jupiter standing left, nude but for cloak over shoulder, Victory on globe in right hand, long scepter in left hand, eagle left with wreath in beak at feet on left, TS∆ in exergue; $45.00 SALE PRICE $40.50


Theodosius II, 10 January 402 - 28 July 450 A.D.

|Theodosius| |II|, |Theodosius| |II,| |10| |January| |402| |-| |28| |July| |450| |A.D.||light| |miliarense|
 
SH21404. Silver light miliarense, RIC X Theodosius II 392, Choice VF, weight 4.880 g, maximum diameter 24.2 mm, die axis 180o, Thessalonica (Salonika, Greece) mint, 408 - 423 A.D.; obverse D N THEODOSIVS P F AVG, pearl-diademed, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse GLORIA ROMANORVM (glory of the Romans), emperor standing facing, nimbate head left, spear in right hand, resting left on shield, star left, COM in exergue; nicely centered, flatly struck centers; rare; SOLD







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