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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Byzantine Coins| ▸ |Comnen Dynasty| ▸ |Manuel I||View Options:  |  |  |   

Manuel I Comnenus, 8 April 1143 - 24 September 1180 A.D.

Manuel's reign was a period in which the Byzantine Empire flourished. He was quick to become personally involved in military campaigns. Gibbons' "Decline & Fall" notes, "The first in the charge, the last in the retreat, [Manuel I's] friends and his enemies alike trembled, the former for his safety, and the latter for their own." Unfortunately his over ambitious policies created enemies and expended the strength of the state. He was severely defeated by the Turks and died a broken man, ruler of a broken empire. Byzantium Empire 1170 AD

|Manuel| |I|, |Byzantine| |Empire,| |Manuel| |I| |Comnenus,| |8| |April| |1143| |-| |24| |September| |1180| |A.D.|, |hyperpyron|
Cupped coins required at least two blows to strike and the obverse die was rocked from one side to the other between blows. Since Christ's face is in the center of many designs, such as on this coin, it is often distorted or even missing due to the overlapping of the strikes in the center. On this coin the two halves of the nimbus cruciger (halo) are offset due to variation in alignment between the two strikes. Christ's face is, however, nicely struck. The result is somewhat exotic.
SH08813. Gold hyperpyron, cf. DOC IV-1 1; Morrisson BnF 61/Cp/AV/13; CLBC I 4.1.1; Grierson 1079; SBCV 1956; Sommer 61.1, gVF, scyphate, weight 4.27 g, maximum diameter 29.4 mm, die axis 180o, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, obverse + KE RO-HΘEI, bust of Christ facing, beardless, wearing numbus cr., pallium and colobium, raising right hand in benediction, scroll in left hand, IC - XC (Greek abbreviation: Jesus Christ) flanking above shoulders; reverse MA/NY/HΛ / ∆EC/ΠO/T/H on left, Tω/ΠOP/ΦY/POΓ/NH/T (or similar) on right, Manuel standing facing wearing crown, divitision and chlamys, labarum in left, patriarchal globus cruciger in right, hand of God (manus Dei) upper right crowns him; wavy flan as typical for the type (even the Sear plate coin is wavy); SOLD


Byzantine Empire, Manuel I Comnenus, 8 April 1143 - 24 September 1180 A.D.

|Manuel| |I|, |Byzantine| |Empire,| |Manuel| |I| |Comnenus,| |8| |April| |1143| |-| |24| |September| |1180| |A.D.|, |tetarteron|
On the reverse of this type, Manuel I usually holds a scepter cruciger, but on this specimen he holds a labarum. This variation is published in Wroth BMC but missing from the other references. We know of only a few other specimens.
BZ91211. Bronze tetarteron, Wroth BMC 61; DOC IV-1 15 var.; Hendy pl. 17, 7 var.; Morrisson BnF 61/X/AE/11 var.; Ratto 2148 var.; Sommer 61.13 var.; SBCV 1968 var., gF, obverse a little off center, irregular flan typical of the type (a cut fragment of an older coin), weight 2.609 g, maximum diameter 20.4 mm, die axis 180o, uncertain Greek mint, c. 1152 - 1160 A.D.; obverse the Theotokos (Virgin Mary) standing right, raising both hands, being blessed by manus Dei (hand of god) to upper right, MP - ΘV flanking across field; reverse MANVHΛ ∆ECΠOT, emperor standing facing, wearing crown, divitision and chlamys, labarum in right hand, akakia in left hand; from the S. Lindner Collection; extremely rare variety; SOLD


|Manuel| |I|, |Byzantine| |Empire,| |Manuel| |I| |Comnenus,| |8| |April| |1143| |-| |24| |September| |1180| |A.D.|, |half| |tetarteron|
Saint George (d. April 23, 303) was a Roman soldier from Anatolia, who was venerated as a Christian martyr. Immortalized in the tale of George and the Dragon, he is the |patron| saint of England, Greece, Portugal, Russia, and many other countries, cities and organizations. -- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saint_George
SH56037. Bronze half tetarteron, Morrisson BnF 61/Th/AE/09; DOC IV-1 18 var. (legend arrangement); CLBC I 4.4.5; Grierson 1101; SBCV 1975; Sommer 61.19, Choice gVF, weight 6.603 g, maximum diameter 21.6 mm, die axis 180o, Thessalonica (Salonika, Greece) mint, 1152 - c. 1160 A.D.; obverse Θ / Γ/ε−ωP/ΓI/Oς (WR ligate), nimbate bust of St. George facing, beardless, wearing tunic, cuirass, and sagion, spear in right hand, shield on left arm; reverse MANYH−Λ ∆εC, Manuel, bust facing, wearing crown and loros, labarum headed scepter in right hand, globus cruciger in left hand; oversized flan (normally 4.0 - 4.5 grams), fantastic for the type; SOLD


|Manuel| |I|, |Byzantine| |Empire,| |Manuel| |I| |Comnenus,| |8| |April| |1143| |-| |24| |September| |1180| |A.D.|, |aspron| |trachy|
Gibbons Decline & Fall says of Manuel I, "The first in the charge, the last in the retreat, his friends and his enemies alike trembled, the former for his safety, and the latter for their own."
BZ38048. Electrum aspron trachy, DOC IV-1 2a; Morrisson BnF 61/Cp/El/1; Wroth BMC 17; Ratto 2117; Hendin pl. 13, 1; SBCV 1957; Sommer 61.2, EF, cracked, weight 4.331 g, maximum diameter 33.3 mm, die axis 180o, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, 1st coinage, c. 1143 - 1152 A.D.; obverse IC - XC (Greek abbreviation: Jesus Christ) OEMMANVOHΛ, facing bust of Christ, bearded, facing, pallium, colobium, Gospels in left; reverse MANOYHΛ ∆ECΠ (or similar), Virgin Mary nimbate standing on right wears pallium and maphorium, crowns emperor with right hand, Manuel standing on left, wears divitision, loros, and chlamys, holds labarum and akakia; SOLD


Byzantine Empire, Manuel I Comnenus, 8 April 1143 - 24 September 1180 A.D.

|Manuel| |I|, |Byzantine| |Empire,| |Manuel| |I| |Comnenus,| |8| |April| |1143| |-| |24| |September| |1180| |A.D.|, |half| |tetarteron|
The cruciform monogram should probably be read, MΛ (Manuel) ∆ (Despotes) K (Komnenos) Π (Porphyrogennetos).

Gibbons Decline & Fall says of Manuel I, "The first in the charge, the last in the retreat, his friends and his enemies alike trembled, the former for his safety, and the latter for their own."
BZ91215. Bronze half tetarteron, DOC IV-1 22; Hendy pl. 18, 1; Morrisson BnF 61/X/AE/1; Wroth BMC 79; Ratto 2159; SBCV 1979; Sommer 61.24.1, gVF, dark near black patina, overstruck on clipped coin, obverse slightly off center, small edge cracks, weight 1.867 g, maximum diameter 18.6 mm, die axis 180o, uncertain Greek mint, 8 Apr 1143 - 1152 A.D.; obverse cruciform Manuel monogram ; reverse half-length bust of Manuel facing, beardless, wearing stemma, divitision, collar decorated with six jewels, loros and crown with cross and pendilia, labarum in right hand, globus cruciger in left hand; from the S. Lindner Collection, ex Forum (2016); SOLD


|Manuel| |I|, |Byzantine| |Empire,| |Manuel| |I| |Comnenus,| |8| |April| |1143| |-| |24| |September| |1180| |A.D.|, |aspron| |trachy|
Loros-waist with five pellets, collar-piece has three jewels.
BZ36590. Billon aspron trachy, DOC IV-1 13c; Wroth BMC 40; Morrisson BnF 61/Cp/B/17; Hendy pl. 17,1; Ratto 2127; SBCV 1966; Sommer 61.11, gVF, scyphate, weight 3.715 g, maximum diameter 30.8 mm, die axis 180o, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, 1167 - 1183 A.D.; obverse IC - XC (Greek abbreviation: Jesus Christ), Christ, bearded, seated facing on throne without back, wearing nimbus cruciger, pallium, colobium, Gospels in left, no stars; reverse MANYHΛ ∆ECΠ (or similar), Virgin Mary standing, on right, nimbate, wearing pallium and maphorium, crowns emperor with right, Manuel standing, on left, wearing divitision, loros, and chlamys, labarum in right, globus cruciger in left; very nicely struck for the issue; SOLD


|Manuel| |I|, |Byzantine| |Empire,| |Manuel| |I| |Comnenus,| |8| |April| |1143| |-| |24| |September| |1180| |A.D.|, |half| |tetarteron|
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.
BZ67642. Bronze half tetarteron, DOC IV-1 23; Hendy pl. 18, 3; Morrisson BnF 61/X/AE/05; Wroth BMC 78; Ratto 2158; SBCV 1980; Sommer 61.25, aEF, nice green patina, weight 1.865 g, maximum diameter 16.2 mm, die axis 180o, uncertain Greek mint, 1152 - c. 1160 A.D.; obverse Θ / Γ/ε−ωP/ΓI/OC (or similar), bust of St. George facing, beardless, wearing nimbus, tunic, cuirass, and sagion, spear in right, shield in left; reverse MANYH ∆εCΠOT, Manuel, bust facing, wearing crown and loros, labarum in right, globus cruciger in left; SOLD


Byzantine Empire, Manuel I Comnenus, 8 April 1143 - 24 September 1180 A.D.

|Manuel| |I|, |Byzantine| |Empire,| |Manuel| |I| |Comnenus,| |8| |April| |1143| |-| |24| |September| |1180| |A.D.|, |half| |tetarteron|
Saint George (d. April 23, 303) was a Roman soldier from Anatolia, who was venerated as a Christian martyr. Immortalized in the tale of George and the Dragon, he is the |patron| saint of England, Greece, Portugal, Russia, and many other countries, cities and organizations. -- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saint_George
BZ91210. Bronze half tetarteron, DOC IV-1 18, Morrisson BnF 61/Th/AE/05, CLBC I 4.4.5, Grierson 1101, Ratto 2154, Wroth BMC 75, SBCV 1975, Sommer 61.19, EF, well struck, good centering, nearly complete legends, minor encrustations, weight 5.051 g, maximum diameter 20.5 mm, die axis 180o, Thessalonica (Salonika, Greece) mint, 1152 - c. 1160 A.D.; obverse Θ / Γ/E-wP/ΓI/OC (wP ligate, in two flanking columnar groups), nimbate bust of St. George facing, beardless, wearing tunic, cuirass, and sagion, spear in right hand, shield on left arm; reverse MANUHΛ - ∆ECΠOT, Manuel, bust facing, wearing crown and loros, labarum headed scepter in right hand, globus cruciger in left hand; from the S. Lindner Collection; SOLD


Byzantine Empire, Latin Crusader Rule, 12 April 1204 - 25 July 1261 A.D.

|Latin| |Crusader| |Rule|, |Byzantine| |Empire,| |Latin| |Crusader| |Rule,| |12| |April| |1204| |-| |25| |July| |1261| |A.D.|, |aspron| |trachy| |nomisma|
For 57 years after the crusader armies sacked the city, Constantinople was ruled by Latin princes.
BZ92837. Billon aspron trachy nomisma, Hendy p. 191, type B, pl. 25, 11 -12; DOC 4-2, p. 674, type B; SBCV 2022; Sommer 68.4, gVF, scyphate, excellent strike and preservation for the type, slightly off center, weight 1.897 g, maximum diameter 22.6 mm, die axis 180o, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, obverse Christ seated facing on throne with back, nimbate, bearded, wearing tunic and kolobion, Gospels in left hand, IC - XC divided across field; reverse MANOVHΛ [∆ECΠOTHC?], emperor standing facing, wearing stemma, divitision, and chlamys, sword pointed downward in right hand, globus cruciger in left hand; SOLD


|Manuel| |I|, |Byzantine| |Empire,| |Manuel| |I| |Comnenus,| |8| |April| |1143| |-| |24| |September| |1180| |A.D.|, |aspron| |trachy|
Variety with stars both left and right on the obverse.
BZ36588. Billon aspron trachy, DOC IV-1 13f; Wroth BMC 40; Morrisson BnF 61/Cp/B/17 39; Hendy pl. 17, 1; Ratto 2127; SBCV 1966; Sommer 61.11, gVF, scyphate, weight 4.394 g, maximum diameter 31.0 mm, die axis 180o, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, obverse IC - XC (Greek abbreviation: Jesus Christ), Christ Pantokrator seated facing on throne without back, bearded, wearing nimbus cruciger, pallium, colobium, Gospels in left hand, star to left and right; reverse MANYHΛ ∆ECΠ (or similar), Virgin Mary standing, on right, nimbate, wearing pallium and maphorium, crowns emperor with right, Manuel standing, on left, wearing divitision, loros, and chlamys, labarum in right, globus cruciger in left; very nicely struck for the issue, flan crack; SOLD




  




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REFERENCES|

Bellinger, A. Catalogue of the Byzantine Coins in the Dumbarton Oaks Collection and in the Whittemore Collection, Vol. IV, Part 1: Alexius I to Alexius V (1081-1204). (Washington D.C., 1966).
Berk, H. Roman Gold Coins of the Medieval World, 383 - 1453 A.D. (Joliet, IL, 1986).
Grierson, P. Byzantine Coins. (London, 1982).
Hendy, M. Coinage and Money in the Byzantine Empire 1081-1261. (Washington D.C., 1969).
Marchev, V. & R. Wachter. Catalogue of the Late Byzantine Coins, Vol. I, 1082 - 1261 AD. (Veliko Tarnovo, Bulgaria, 2011).
Morrisson, C. Catalogue des Monnaies Byzantines de la Bibliothèque Nationale II, 711 - 1204. (Paris, 1970).
Ratto, R. Monnaies Byzantines et d'autre Pays contemporaines à l'époque byzantine. (Lugano, 1930).
Sabatier, J. Description générale des monnaies Byzantines. (Paris, 1863).
Sear, D. Byzantine Coins and Their Values. (London, 1987).
Sommer, A. Die Münzen des Byzantinischen Reiches 491-1453. Mit einem Anhang: Die Münzen des Kaiserreichs von Trapezunt. (Regenstauf, 2010).
Tolstoi, I. Monnaies byzantines. (St. Petersburg, 1913 - 14).
Wroth, W. Catalogue of the Imperial Byzantine Coins in the British Museum. (London, 1908).

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