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    John I Tzimisces: Imperial Dynamism

    John I Tzimisces (AD 969-976). AV histmanon nomisma (22mm, 4.41 gm, 7h).  Constantinople. +IhS XIS RX RЄGNANTIhM, facing bust of Christ, with decorated nimbus, wearing pallium and colobium, raising right hand in benediction and holding Book of Gospels in left / + ΘЄOTOC bOHΘ 'IΩ dЄSP, facing busts of the Virgin, nimbate, wearing tunic and maphorium, MΘ above her head, crowning John, with short beard, on left, wearing loros, and holding long patriarchal cross; Manus Dei reaching down from above toward John's head. Sear 1785. DO 3. A beautiful coin, well struck and lustrous. NGC (photo-certificate) MS 5/5 - 5/5.

    From The Andre Constantine Dimitriadis Collection.

    One of the most dynamic Byzantine rulers, John Tzimisces came from a military family and was made commander of the Eastern armies by the Emperor Nicephorus II. Capable and ambitious, he became the lover of the emperor's wife, Theophano, and together they plotted the murder of Nicephorus in AD 969. Once Nicephorus was out of the way, John had Theophano banished, married the daughter of Constantine VII, and ascended the throne as senior emperor and protector of the young Basil II and Constantine VIII. Despite its tawdry start, his rule was brilliantly successful on all fronts. Personally leading the now formidable Byzantine army, he dealt heavy defeats to the Russians, Bulgarians and Arabs. By AD 975 he was in striking distance of Jerusalem and even Baghdad, and the Empire was stronger than it had been since the days of Justinian. His impressive reign was cut short by his death at age 51 in AD 976, either due to typhoid or poisoning. 

    This coin from the Dimitriadis Collection has been issued a photo-certificate by NGC. It may be sent in for encapsulation after the auction at the request of the buyer, free of charge. E-mail SamS@HA.com if you would like to utilize this option.


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    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    September, 2014
    3rd-10th Wednesday-Wednesday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 4
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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