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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Byzantine Coins| ▸ |Byzantine Mints| ▸ |Constantinople||View Options:  |  |  | 

Byzantine Constantinople (326 - 1453)

When Anastasius became emperor the once vast number of Roman mints had been reduced to only two: Constantinople and Thessalonica.

Byzantine Empire, Constans II with Constantine IV, Heraclius and Tiberius (his sons), 2 June 659 - 15 July 668 A.D.

|Constans| |II|, |Byzantine| |Empire,| |Constans| |II| |with| |Constantine| |IV,| |Heraclius| |and| |Tiberius| |(his| |sons),| |2| |June| |659| |-| |15| |July| |668| |A.D.||follis|
In 660, Constans II, paranoid about the ambitions of his younger brother, Theodosius, had him murdered. Hated by the citizens of Constantinople, Constans decided to move the capital to Syracuse, Sicily. Although the date is mostly off the flan, the I left can only be year 19 (IT). Curiously, this type sometimes includes the officina number on both the obverse and reverse and the numbers do not always match.
BZ93531. Bronze follis, DOC II-2 86d, Morrisson BnF 13/Cp/AE/29, Wroth BMC 199, Tolstoi 349, Hahn MIB III 175, Sommer 12.55, SBCV 1011, Ratto -, aVF/F, ragged tight flan, weak reverse strike, marks, light deposits, weight 4.432 g, maximum diameter 22.8 mm, die axis 0o, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, 659 - 665 A.D.; obverse Constans standing facing, with long beard, wearing helmet, long cross in right, left hand on hip, I/Θ (year 19) in left field, cross above M (40 nummi) over officina letter (off flan) in right field; reverse Constantine IV, Heraclius and Tiberius standing facing, each wearing crown with cross and chlamys, each holding globus cruciger in right hand; from the Errett Bishop Collection; scarce; $70.00 (Ä57.40)


Byzantine Empire, Justinian II, 10 July 685 - Late 695 and Summer 705 - 4 November 711 A.D.

|Justinian| |II|, |Byzantine| |Empire,| |Justinian| |II,| |10| |July| |685| |-| |Late| |695| |and| |Summer| |705| |-| |4| |November| |711| |A.D.||solidus|
The portrait on this coin was based on an icon believed by the people of the time to bear a miraculous resemblance to Christís actual appearance.
SH21619. Gold solidus, DOC II-2 2b, Wroth BMC 1, Morrisson BnF 15/Cp/AV/12, Tolstoi 1, Ratto 1705, Hahn MIB 2b, Sommer 17.3, SBCV 1415, EF, weight 4.239 g, maximum diameter 19.2 mm, die axis 180o, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, 705 - 711 A.D.; obverse O N IhS ChS REX REGNANTIYM, bust of Christ facing, curly hair, short beard, wearing pallium and colobium, Gospels in left, cross behind head; reverse IYSTINIANYS ET TIbERIYS PP A, Justinian (on left) and Tiberius, half-length facing, each wears crown, divitision and chlamys, holding cross potent on three steps in center; very rare; SOLD


Byzantine Empire, Justinian II, 10 July 685 - Late 695 and Summer 705 - 4 November 711 A.D.

|Justinian| |II|, |Byzantine| |Empire,| |Justinian| |II,| |10| |July| |685| |-| |Late| |695| |and| |Summer| |705| |-| |4| |November| |711| |A.D.||tremissis|
Justinian II was the first emperor to put Christ on his coins.

In 692, a Byzantine army under general Leontios was defeated at Sebastopolis (in modern Turkey) by Arab forces led by Muhammad ibn Marwan. During the battle a force of about 20,000 Slavs deserted the Byzantine army and joined the Muslim Arabs. Cyprus and the last remaining Byzantine holdings east of the Taurus Mountains were lost.
SH70974. Gold tremissis, DOC II-2 14; Wroth BMC 22 - 23; Tolstoi 60 - 63; Ratto 1691; Hahn MIB 16; Sommer 14.8; SBCV 1256, VF, areas of flat strike, weight 1.355 g, maximum diameter 16.3 mm, die axis 180o, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, first reign, c. 692 - 695 A.D.; obverse IhS CRISTOS REX REGNANTIYM, facing bust of Christ, cross behind head, long hair and full beard, wearing pallium and colobium, raising right hand in benediction, Gospels in left; reverse D IYSTINI-ANYS SERY ChRISTI, Justinian standing facing, wearing crown with cross and loros, long cross potent on globe on base in right, akakia in left; ex CNG auction 203 (28 Jan 2009), lot 494; SOLD


Byzantine Empire, Maurice Tiberius, 13 August 582 - 22 November 602 A.D.

|Maurice| |Tiberius|, |Byzantine| |Empire,| |Maurice| |Tiberius,| |13| |August| |582| |-| |22| |November| |602| |A.D.||light| |weight| |solidus|
Most references attribute this type to Antioch. Although this type is not listed in DOC I, Grierson attributes all solidi with this wide-faced portrait to Antioch. Hahn attributes the type to Constantinople.
SH90884. Gold light weight solidus, 20 siliquae; SBCV 531, Hahn MIB 14, Sommer 7.61, Adelson 88 - 89 corr. (rho-cross scepter), DOC I -, Wroth BMC -, Morrisson BnF -, Tolstoi -, Ratto -, gVF, uneven strike, tight flan, weight 3.390 g, maximum diameter 20.7 mm, die axis 180o, 10th officina, Constantinopolis or Antioch mint, 583 - 602 A.D.; obverse D N MAVRIC - TIb P P AVG, helmeted, draped, and cuirassed bust facing, globus cruciger in right hand, shield in left, helmet with arc ornament in front and plume; reverse VICTORIA AVGG I (victory of the two emperors, 10th officina), angel standing facing, long cross in right hand, globus cruciger in left hand, OBXX in exergue; Forum knows of only seven other examples of this extremely rare type, from the Robert Watcher Collection; extremely rare; SOLD


Byzantine Empire, Romanus I and Christopher, 921 - 931 A.D.

|Romanus| |I|, |Byzantine| |Empire,| |Romanus| |I| |and| |Christopher,| |921| |-| |931| |A.D.||solidus|
The throne depicted on the obverse is also depicted in the Narthex Mosaic, at Hagia Sophia, Constantinople, from the late 9th or early 10th century A.D.
SH31260. Gold solidus, DOC III part 2, 7; Berk 276; SBCV 1745, gVF, weight 4.196 g, maximum diameter 20.2 mm, die axis 180o, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, 921 - 931 A.D.; obverse +IhS XPS REX REGNANTInm, Christ enthroned facing, wearing nimbus cruciger, pallium, and colobium and raising right in benediction, holding gospels in left hand, the throne has a lyre back and is ornamented with pearls; reverse ROman Et XRISTOFO AYGGb (or similar), facing busts of Romanus I, with short beard on left, and Christopher (his son-in-law), beardless on right, Romanus wears loros, Christopher wears chlamys, and they hold a long patriarchal cross between them; SOLD


Byzantine Empire, Constantine VIII, 15 December 1025 - 11 November 1028 A.D.

|Constantine| |VIII|, |Byzantine| |Empire,| |Constantine| |VIII,| |15| |December| |1025| |-| |11| |November| |1028| |A.D.||histamenon| |nomisma|
SH21620. Gold histamenon nomisma, SBCV 1815; DOC III part 2, 2, Choice EF, weight 4.391 g, maximum diameter 25.2 mm, die axis 180o, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, obverse + IhS XPS REX REGNANTINM, Christ Pantocrator with gospels; reverse + CWNSTANTIN BASILEWS ROM, bust facing, wearing crown and loros, labarum in right, akakia in left; very scarce; SOLD


Romanus III Argyrus, 12 November 1028 - 11 April 1034

|Romanus| |III|, |Romanus| |III| |Argyrus,| |12| |November| |1028| |-| |11| |April| |1034||histamenon| |nomisma|
Romanus III was fanatically devoted to the Virgin. His adoration found expression in the building and restoration of churches dedicated to St. Mary and also explains the Virgin's prominence on his coinage. MΘ is a Greek abbreviation for Mητερα Tου Θεου - Mother of God. ΘCE abbreviates Θεοτοκε - God-bearer, also referring to the Virgin. On one of his types, a silver miliaresion, the inscription reads: Παρθενε σοι πολυαινε ος ηλιτικη παντα κατοπθοι, which means, "He who places his hopes on thee, O Virgin all-glorious, will prosper in all he does."
RS94631. Gold histamenon nomisma, DOC III part 2, 1d, Morrisson BnF 43/Cp/AV/01, Ratto 1972, Sommer 43.2.2, SBCV 1819, Wroth BMC 2, Choice VF, well centered, highest points flat (not fully struck), weight 4.311 g, maximum diameter 25.7 mm, die axis 180o, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, 12 Nov 1028 - 11 Apr 1034; obverse + IhS XIS REX REςNANTIhm (Jesus Christ King of Kings), Christ enthroned, wears nimbus cruciger, pallium, & colobium, raises hand, holds Gospels; reverse ΘCE bOHΘ RWMANW (god-bearer help the Romans), MΘ (mother of God) above center, nimbate Virgin (on right) wears pallium and maphorium, with right hand she crowns Romanus, who is bearded and wears a crown, sakkos and loros, globus cruciger in his right, four pellets in loros end below globus; from the Ray Nouri Collection; scarce; SOLD


Byzantine Empire, Heraclius Constantine, 11 January - 20 April 641 A.D.

|Heraclius| |Constantine|, |Byzantine| |Empire,| |Heraclius| |Constantine,| |11| |January| |-| |20| |April| |641| |A.D.||solidus|
Most references attribute this type to Heraclius; however, Hahn (MIB) convincingly argues that the K in the reverse right field refers to Heraclius Constantine. During his very short reign, he may have thought it prudent to maintain the same type struck by his father.
SH26643. Gold solidus, Hahn MIB 52; SBCV 771 (Heraclius), gVF, weight 4.270 g, maximum diameter 20.4 mm, die axis 180o, 9th officina, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, as Senior emperor; obverse Heraclius with long beard and mustache between his sons, Heraclonas on left and Heraclius Constantine on right, all stand facing, each wears crown and chlamys and holds globus cruciger in right hand; reverse VICTORIA AVGu Θ (victory of the Emperor, 9th officina), cross potent on three steps, Heraclian monogram left, K right, CONOB in exergue; scarce; SOLD


Byzantine Empire, Romanus III Argyrus, 12 November 1028 - 11 April 1034

|Romanus| |III|, |Byzantine| |Empire,| |Romanus| |III| |Argyrus,| |12| |November| |1028| |-| |11| |April| |1034||histamenon| |nomisma|
Romanus III was fanatically devoted to the Virgin. His adoration found expression in the building and restoration of churches dedicated to St. Mary and also explains the Virgin's prominence on his coinage. MΘ is a Greek abbreviation for Mητερα Tου Θεου - Mother of God. ΘCE abbreviates Θεοτοκε - God-bearer, also referring to the Virgin. On one of his types, a silver miliaresion, the inscription reads: Παρθενε σοι πολυαινε ος ηλιτικη παντα κατοπθοι, which means, "He who places his hopes on thee, O Virgin all-glorious, will prosper in all he does."
SH83913. Gold histamenon nomisma, DOC III part 2, 1d, Morrisson BnF 43/Cp/AV/01, Ratto 1972, Sommer 43.2.2, SBCV 1819, Wroth BMC 2, VF, well centered and struck, die wear, weight 4.382 g, maximum diameter 23.6 mm, die axis 180o, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, 12 Nov 1028 - 11 Apr 1034; obverse + IhS XIS REX REGNANTInm (Jesus Christ King of Kings), Christ enthroned, wears nimbus cruciger, pallium, & colobium, raises hand, holds Gospels; reverse ΘCE bOHΘ RWMANW (god-bearer help the Romans), MΘ (mother of God) above center, nimbate Virgin (on right) wears pallium and maphorium, with right hand she crowns Romanus, who is bearded and wears a crown, sakkos and loros, globus cruciger in his right, four pellets in loros end below globus; from the Robert Wachter Collection, ex Kuenker; scarce; SOLD


Byzantine Empire, Justin I, 10 July 518 - 1 August 527 A.D.

|Justin| |I|, |Byzantine| |Empire,| |Justin| |I,| |10| |July| |518| |-| |1| |August| |527| |A.D.||solidus|
They look similar, but there is a significant physical difference between angels and Victory. Angels are all male. Victory (Nike) is female. On Byzantine coinage, the male angel replaced the female Victory after the reunion with Rome was concluded on 28 March 519 A.D.
SH58060. Gold solidus, DOC I 2b, SBCV 56, Berk 38, Hahn MIB I 3, Wroth BMC 1 ff. var. (officina not listed), Ratto 383 ff. var. (same), Tolstoi 1 ff. var. (same), EF, flaw on forehead, weight 4.471 g, maximum diameter 21.4 mm, die axis 180o, 2nd officina, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, 522 - 527 A.D.; obverse D N IVSTI-NVS P P AVG, helmeted and cuirassed bust facing, spear in right over shoulder, shield on left arm decorated with horseman; reverse VICTORIA AVGGG B (victory of the three emperors, 2nd officina), angel standing facing, long cross in right hand, globus cruciger in left hand, star right, CONOB in exergue; ex Harlan Berk; SOLD







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