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    Description

    Crisp Detail, Brilliant Luster

    Romanus I Lecapenus (AD 920-944), with  Constantine VII and Christopher. AV solidus (21mm, 4.44 gm, 6h).   Constantinople, AD 924-931. IhS XPS RЄX RЄGNANΤIЧM*, full figure of Christ Pantocrator, with cruciform nimbus, seated facing on throne with curved back, wearing chiton, raising hand in benediction and holding Gospels in left arm / ROMAh' ЄT XPISTOFO' AЧGG' b', crowned facing busts of Romanus, wearing loros, and Christopher, draped, holding patriarchal cross between them. Sear 1745. DOC 7. Nicely centered on a broad flan, sharply struck and fully lustrous. Among the finest-known examples! NGC MS? 5/5 - 4/5.

    This rare and extremely attractive solidus was struck during the co-rule of Constantine VII and his regent Romanus I. In order to save the young Constantine from the domination of the Bulgarian Tsar Symeon, Romanus I, commander of the Byzantine fleet, was appointed his regent in a palace revolution in Constantinople. Romanus skillfully defended against repeated Bulgarian attacks, but once Symeon died in 927 and the Bulgarian Empire began to collapse, he attempted to advance his own sons at the expense of Constantine, principally Christopher, who is named on this solidus along with his father. Constantine VII, theoretically the senior ruler, is not named at all, illustrating his subordinate status. However, Constantine proved no mere cipher: In 944, Romanus was deposed in a palace coup by his sons, who were in turn dethroned by Constantine VII, who reigned unopposed until AD 959 and proved himself one of Byzantium's canniest emperors.


    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    January, 2015
    4th-5th Sunday-Monday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 13
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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