Skip to main content
Go to accessibility notice

    Description

    Splendid Irene solidus

    Irene (AD 797-802). AV solidus (20mm, 4.50 gm, 6h). NGC Choice AU 5/5 - 4/5, lt. graffito. Constantinople. ЄIRInH-bASILISSH, bust of Irene facing, wearing loros and crown with cross, two pinnacles and pendilia, globus cruciger in right hand, cross-tipped scepter in left / • ЄIRInH-bASILISSH Χ, bust of Irene facing, wearing loros and crown with cross, two pinnacles and pendilia, globus cruciger in right hand, cross-tipped scepter in left. Sear 1599. DOC 3, Part 1, 1c. Well-struck with crisp details. The light graffito noted on the holder is so unobtrusive one must search to find it.

    From the Collection of A Scottish Gentleman. Ex Canonicus Collection (Nomos AG, Auction 9, 21 October 2014), lot 323.

    The brief sole reign of the Empress Irene marked the first time a woman ruled the Roman or Byzantine Empires in her own right. Alas, the experiment could not be called a success. The wife of the short-reigning Emperor Leo IV, Irene soon came to dominate domestic affairs in his government. When Leo died in AD 780, Irene ruled as regent for her adolescent son Constantine VI. In AD 790 she was temporarily ousted by her son, but he showed no talent for ruling and Irene, in turn, had him ousted and blinded in AD 797, seizing sole power for herself. She tried to win popularity with generous handouts, but soon ran out of money just as the empire faced a series of military disasters. Furthermore, the accession of a female promoted the Pope in Rome to declare the imperial throne vacant, and he crowned the Frankish king Charlemagne "Emperor of the Romans" in AD 800. In AD 802 Irene was ousted in a coup led by her finance minister Nicephorus. The novel coinage of Irene's sole reign depicts the Empress on both sides in similar poses.


    View all of [The Collection of a Scottish Gentleman ]

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    August, 2018
    17th Friday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 8
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 507

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    20% of the successful bid (minimum $19) per lot.

    Sold for: Sign-in or Join (free & quick)

    Heritage membership

    Join Now - It's Free

    VIEW BENEFITS
    1. Past Auction Values (prices, photos, full descriptions, etc.)
    2. Bid online
    3. Free Collector newsletter
    4. Want List with instant e-mail notifications
    5. Reduced auction commissions when you resell your
      winnings 
    Consign now
    • Cash Advances
    • More Bidders
    • Trusted Experts
    • Over 200,000 Satisfied Consignors Since 1976
    Only 2 days left to consign to the 2020 April 22 - 27 Central States World Coins Signature Auction - Chicago!

    Learn about consigning with us

    I have never been disappointed with your customer service & have been a Heritage customer for approximately 20 years
    Monte R.,
    Alexandria, VA
    View More Testimonials

    HA.com receives more traffic than any other auction house website. (Source: Similarweb.com)

    Video tutorial

    Getting the most out of search

    Recent auctions

    2020 February 20 - 23 Long Beach Expo US Coins Signature Auction - Long Beach
    2020 February 20 - 23 Long Beach Expo US Coins Signature Auction - Long Beach
    REALIZED $13,034,923
    2020 February 9 A Special Collection of Frankfurt Coins World Coins Monthly Online Auction
    2020 February 9 A Special Collection of Frankfurt Coins World Coins Monthly Online Auction
    REALIZED $55,978.00
    2020 January 9 - 13 FUN World Paper Money Signature Auction - Orlando
    2020 January 9 - 13 FUN World Paper Money Signature Auction - Orlando
    REALIZED $1,720,013