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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|
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 $640.00


Maximinus II Daia, May 310 - 30 April 313 A.D.

|Maximinus| |II|, |Maximinus| |II| |Daia,| |May| |310| |-| |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; $65.00 SALE PRICE $58.50


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|
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 $56.00


Maximinus II Daia, May 310 - 30 April 313 A.D.

|Maximinus| |II|, |Maximinus| |II| |Daia,| |May| |310| |-| |30| |April| |313| |A.D.||follis| |(large)|
This follis was struck while Maximinus II Daia officially held the title filius augustorum. Galerius assigned this title to Constantine and Maximinus II after the conference of Carnuntum in November 308. Constantine rejected it as a demotion, as he had already taken the title augustus in 307. Maximinus also rejected it because he thought he should be made augustus following the death of Severus II, and this new title was below that rank. Only the mints in the east used this title. The mints in the west, under the control of Constantine and Maximinus, did not use it. In May 310 A.D., Galerius put an end to the issue and recognized them as augusti.
RT90629. Billon follis (large), RIC VI 32a (S), SRCV IV 14804, Cohen VII 42, Hunter V 18 var. (6th officina), VF/F, well centered, light corrosion, encrustations, weight 7.342 g, maximum diameter 26.8 mm, die axis 180o, 4th officina, Thessalonica (Salonika, Greece) mint, as filius augustorum, c. Dec 308 - late 309 A.D.; obverse MAXIMINVS FIL AVGG (Maximinus Filius Augustorum - Maximinus son of the Emperors), laureate head right; reverse GENIO CAESARIS (to the guardian spirit of the prince), Genius standing slightly left, head left, nude but for chlamys over shoulders and left arm, kalathos on head, pouring libations from patera in right hand, cornucopia in left hand, star left, ∆ right,SMTS in exergue; scarce; $50.00 SALE PRICE $45.00


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

|Licinius| |I|, |Licinius| |I,| |11| |November| |308| |-| |18| |September| |324| |A.D.||follis|
At the beginning of the 16th century nearly 20,000 Sephardic Jews immigrated to Greece from Spain following their expulsion. By 1519, 15,715 Jews lived in Thessaloniki, 54% of the population. After the Great Thessaloniki Fire of 1917 left 72,000 people homeless, unable to stay and survive, nearly half of the Jewish population emigrated to France, the United States and Palestine. On April 22, 1941, Thessaloniki fell to Nazi Germany. 50,000 Jews, 95% of the Jewish population, were sent to concentration camps where most were murdered in the gas chambers. Another 11,000 Jews were sent to forced labor camps, where most also perished. Only 1200 Jews live in the city today.
RT110035. Billon follis, Hunter V 85 (also 1st officina), RIC VI Thessalonica 60, SRCV V 15251, gVF, thin flan with areas unstruck, green patina, well centered, weight 2.456 g, maximum diameter 24.7 mm, die axis 0o, 1st 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 slightly left, head left, nude but for cloak on left shoulder, Victory on globe in right hand, long scepter in left hand, eagle with wreath in beak at feet on left, TSA in exergue; $50.00 SALE PRICE $45.00


Galerius, 1 March 305 - 5 May 311 A.D.

|Galerius|, |Galerius,| |1| |March| |305| |-| |5| |May| |311| |A.D.||follis| |(large)|
In Roman religion, every man has a genius, a presiding spirit. In De Die Natali, Censorinus says, from the moment we are born, we live under the guard and tutelage of Genius. Cities, organizations, and peoples also had a genius. On coins, we find inscriptions to the Genius of the Army, of the Senate, of the Roman People, etc. The legend GENIO AVGVSTI dedicates this coin to the Genius of the Augusti, the Emperors. Genius' image is of a man with a cloak half covering the shoulders leaving the rest of his body naked, holding a cornucopia in one hand, and a simpulum or a patera in the other.
RT90834. Billon follis (large), Hunter V 10 (also 1st officina), RIC VI Thessalonica 30a or 40a (type continued through two issues), SRCV IV 14507, Cohen VII 40, gVF, brown tone, areas of light corrosion on obverse, weight 5.831 g, maximum diameter 24.1 mm, die axis 0o, 1st officina, Thessalonica (Salonika, Greece) mint, c. Dec 308 - May 311 A.D.; obverse GALMAXIMIANVS P F AVG, laureate head right; reverse GENIO AVGVSTI (to the guardian spirit of the Emperor), Genius standing slightly left, head left, nude but for chlamys over shoulders and left arm, kalathos on head, pouring libations from patera in right hand, cornucopia in left hand, star lower left, A right, SMTS in exergue; $40.00 SALE PRICE $36.00 ON RESERVE


Galerius, 1 March 305 - 5 May 311 A.D.

|Galerius|, |Galerius,| |1| |March| |305| |-| |5| |May| |311| |A.D.||follis| |(large)|
In 309 A.D., a plague, perhaps related to anthrax, spread across the Roman Empire, causing a drastic decline in the population.
RT90637. Billon follis (large), Hunter V 12 (also 2nd officina), RIC VI Thessalonica 30a, SRCV IV 14507, Cohen VII 40, VF, centered, encrustations, weight 6.968 g, maximum diameter 25.6 mm, die axis 0o, 2nd officina, Thessalonica (Salonika, Greece) mint, c. 308 - 311 A.D.; obverse GAL MAXIMIANVS P F AVG, laureate head right; reverse GENIO AVGVSTI (to the guardian spirit of the Emperor), Genius standing slightly left, head left, nude but for chlamys over shoulders and left arm, kalathos on head, pouring libations from patera in right hand, cornucopia in left hand, star lower left, B right, SMTS in exergue; $30.00 SALE PRICE $27.00


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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