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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.

Aelia Flaccilla, Augusta 19 January 379 - 386 A.D., Wife of Theodosius I

|Aelia| |Flaccilla|, |Aelia| |Flaccilla,| |Augusta| |19| |January| |379| |-| |386| |A.D.,| |Wife| |of| |Theodosius| |I||maiorina|
On the throne Aelia Flaccilla was a shining example of Christian virtue and ardent charity. St. Ambrose describes her as "a soul true to God." Theodoret in particular exalts her humility, charity and benevolence (Church History V.19, ed. Valesius, III, 192 sq.). He tells us how she personally tended the disabled, and quotes a saying of hers: "To distribute money belongs to the imperial dignity, but I offer up for the imperial dignity itself personal service to the Giver." Aelia Flaccilla is commemorated as a saint by the Eastern Orthodox Church; her feast day is 14 September.
SL94885. Bronze maiorina, RIC IX 82.1 (S) var. (only 5th officina listed), LRBC II 2170 var. (same), SRCV V 20618 var. (same), Cohen VIII 6, NGC XF, strike 4/5, surface 3/5, repatinated (6555578-003), weight 4.216 g, maximum diameter 24.1 mm, die axis 0o, 2nd officina, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, c. 25 Aug 383 - 386 A.D.; obverse AEL FLACCILLA AVG, diademed and draped bust right; reverse SALVS REIPVBLICAE (health of the Republic), empress standing facing, head right, arms folded on breast, CONSB in exergue; NGC| Lookup; scarce; $160.00 SALE PRICE $144.00


Byzantine Empire, Nicephorus III Botaniates, 7 January 1078 - 1 April 1081

|Nicephorus| |III|, |Byzantine| |Empire,| |Nicephorus| |III| |Botaniates,| |7| |January| |1078| |-| |1| |April| |1081||follis|
After the inept rule of Michael VII led to several revolts, Nicephorus seized the capitol and was crowned emperor. His wife died shortly after. To gain the aura of royalty and the support of the powerful Ducas family, he married Michael's wife, Empress Maria of Alania (despite that her husband was still alive). Instead of strengthening his position, the marriage would lead to his downfall. In order to ensure the succession of her son Constantine, Empress Maria conspired with Alexius Comnenus to dispose of Nicephorus. Just as Nicephorus had banished Michael to a monastery, Alexius Comnenus banished Nicephorus to a monastery. He died soon after.
BZ99036. Bronze follis, DOC III-2 9, Morrisson BnF 56/Cp/AE/02, Wroth BMC 12, Ratto 2053, Sommer 56.5, SBCV 1888, VF, dark green patina, scratches, light deposits, overstruck (on anonymous follis class H?), weight 6.954 g, maximum diameter 28.8 mm, die axis 0o, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, 7 Jan 1078 - 1 Apr 1081; obverse 3/4 length figure of Christ standing facing, wearing nimbus cruciger, pallium, and colobium, raising right hand in benediction, Gospels in left hand, IC - XC (Greek abbreviation: Iησοúς Xριστος - Jesus Christ) above stars left and right; reverse cross with pellet at each end, eight ray star in circle at center, C - Φ / N − ∆ (Greek abbreviation: Σταυρε Φυλαττε Nικηφοπον ∆εσποτη - May the cross protect Despot Nicephorus) in the quarters of cross; from a Las Vegas dealer; rare; $140.00 SALE PRICE $112.00


Byzantine Empire, Isaac II Angelus, 12 September 1185 - 8 April 1195 A.D.

|Isaac| |II| |Angelus|, |Byzantine| |Empire,| |Isaac| |II| |Angelus,| |12| |September| |1185| |-| |8| |April| |1195| |A.D.||tetarteron|
Isaac II debased the coinage, sold appointments to government posts, and was a spendthrift. He was overthrown, blinded and imprisoned by his brother, Alexios III in 1195. After eight years of captivity, Isaac II was raised from the dungeon to the throne once more after the arrival of the Fourth Crusade and the flight of Alexios III from the capital in July 1203. Both his mind and body had been enfeebled by confinement, and his son Alexios IV Angelos was associated on the throne as the effective monarch. Alexios IV was unable to meet his obligations and his vacillation caused him to lose the support of both his crusader allies and his subjects. At the end of January 1204 the influential court official Alexios Doukas took advantage of riots in the capital to imprison Alexios IV and seize the throne as Alexios V. At this point Isaac II died, allegedly of shock, while Alexios IV was strangled.
BZ99287. Bronze tetarteron, DOC IV 4a; Hendy pl. 21, 8; Wroth BMC 38; Ratto 2196; Morrisson BnF 64/Cp/AE/1; SBCV 2004; Sommer 65.6, aVF, brown tone, light encrustations, weak strike areas, porous/grainy, struck on a cut flan, weight 3.496 g, maximum diameter 19.7 mm, die axis 180o, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, 12 Sep 1185 - 8 Apr 1195 A.D.; obverse the Virgin orans standing facing, nimbate, wearing pallium and maphorium, nimbate head of infant Christ on her chest, MP - ΘV (Greek abbreviation: Mητηρ Θεου - Mother of God) across field; reverse Isaac standing facing, scepter cruciger in right hand, anexikakia in left hand, being crowned by manus Dei upper right, IC/AA/KI/·C - ∆EC/Π·T/H/C (or similar, in two columns; Isaac, despotes); from the S. Lindner Collection; $125.00 SALE PRICE $100.00


Byzantine Empire, Constantine VII and Romanus I Lecapenus, 17 December 920 - 16 December 944 A.D.

|Constantine| |VII|, |Byzantine| |Empire,| |Constantine| |VII| |and| |Romanus| |I| |Lecapenus,| |17| |December| |920| |-| |16| |December| |944| |A.D.||follis|
Constantine VII became sole emperor while he was a minor. He was dominated by his regents and was not allowed to take part in government. His regent Romanus I was made co-emperor in 920. In 945 Romanus I was deposed by his sons who wanted the throne. Instead Constantine VII took control. Finally, when he was 40 years old, he had sole rule and real power.
BZ93544. Bronze follis, DOC III-2 25, Sommer 36.16, Morrisson BnF 37/Cp/AE/31, Wroth BMC 14, Ratto 1886, SBCV 1760; undertype: SBCV 1729 (Leo VI), VF, dark green patina with earthen highlights, strong undertype effects, weight 9.370 g, maximum diameter 28.8 mm, die axis 180o, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, 931 - 944 A.D.; obverse + RWmAn' bASILEVS RWM' (or similar), Romanus I facing, bearded, wearing jeweled chlamys and crown with cross, globus cruciger in left, transverse labarum in right; reverse + RWMA/n' En ΘEW bA/SILEVS RW/mAIWn in four lines; from the Errett Bishop Collection; $90.00 SALE PRICE $72.00


Byzantine Empire, Leo VI the Wise, 6 January 870 - 11 May 912 A.D.

|Leo| |VI|, |Byzantine| |Empire,| |Leo| |VI| |the| |Wise,| |6| |January| |870| |-| |11| |May| |912| |A.D.||follis|
Leo VI was a scholar who had little time for foreign affairs, as a result the empire declined. The Bulgars and Arabs became problematic. He completed the legal system started by Basil. He married four times in the quest for a male heir, putting him in conflict with the church. He was eventually barred from attending St. Sophia.
BZ98865. Bronze follis, DOC III-2 8, Morrisson BnF 35/Cp/AE/14, Wroth BMC 8, Ratto 1873, Sommer 34.5, SBCV 1729, VF, green patina, broad flan, weight 6.012 g, maximum diameter 27.5 mm, die axis 180o, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, 886 - 912 AD; obverse + LEOn bASILEVS ROm', bust facing, with short beard, wearing crown with cross and chlamys, holding akakia in left hand; reverse + LEOn / EnΘEO bA/SILEVS R/OMEOn, inscription in four lines; $90.00 SALE PRICE $72.00


Byzantine Empire, John II Comnenus, 15 August 1118 - 8 April 1143 A.D.

|John| |II|, |Byzantine| |Empire,| |John| |II| |Comnenus,| |15| |August| |1118| |-| |8| |April| |1143| |A.D.||tetarteron|
The maphorium (maphorion) was a loose sleeveless hooded outerwear mantel, cloak or shawl, worn by medieval women outdoors in public. The Virgin Mary is most often depicted wearing a maphorium, as seen in the icon below. It is a cloth which usually covers the head and is worn around the neck and chin. At many stages of medieval culture it was unseemly for a married woman to show her hair. A maphorium might be elaborately starched, and creased and folded in prescribed ways, even supported on wire or wicker framing.
BZ99284. Bronze tetarteron, DOC IV-1 13; Wroth BMC 72; Morrison BnF 60/Cp/AE/13; Ratto 2110; Grierson 1072; CLBC 3.4.2; Hendy pl. 11, 8; SBCV 1946; Sommer 60.9, aF, centered on a tight flan, a bit rough, weight 3.590 g, maximum diameter 18.0 mm, die axis 180o, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, 15 Aug 1118 - 1122 A.D.; obverse facing bust of the Virgin Orans, nimbate, wearing pallium and maphorium, MP - ΘV (Greek abbreviation: Mητηρ Θεου - Mother of God) across field; reverse John standing facing, wearing crown, divitision and chlamys, jeweled scepter in right hand, globus cruciger in left hand, Iw / ∆CC/ΠOT / TW/ΠOP (in column of 5 lines) on left, ΦV/PO/ΓC/NH/T (in column of 5 lines) on right; from the S. Lindner Collection; scarce; $90.00 SALE PRICE $72.00


Byzantine Anonymous Follis of Christ, Class C, Michael IV, 12 April 1034 - 10 December 1041 A.D.

|Anonymous| |Folles|, |Byzantine| |Anonymous| |Follis| |of| |Christ,| |Class| |C,| |Michael| |IV,| |12| |April| |1034| |-| |10| |December| |1041| |A.D.||anonymous| |follis|
"The obverse on this type represents an icon to which the Empress Zoe was particularly devoted, and a similar representation appears on a pattern histamenon of Zoe's brief sole reign in December, 1041." -- David Sear's Byzantine Coins and Their Values
BZ99041. Bronze anonymous follis, Anonymous follis of Christ class C; DOC III-2 C.1; SBCV 1825; Sommer 40.5; Wroth BMC 6 ff. (Theodora), VF, brown tone, edge and surface cracks, tight oval flan, double strike on obv., weight 5.705 g, maximum diameter 27.0 mm, die axis 180o, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, 1034 - 1041 A.D.; obverse + EMMANOVHΛ (romanized Hebrew - God is with us), three-quarter length figure of Christ standing facing, wearing nimbus cruciger, pallium, and colobium, raising right hand in benediction, Gospels in left hand, IC - XC (Greek abbreviation: Iησοúς Xριστος - Jesus Christ) flanking across field; reverse jeweled cross with pellet at each extremity, in the angles IC - XC / NI-KA (Jesus Christ Conquers); $70.00 SALE PRICE $56.00


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 Christs 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, 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-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







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