Skip to main content
Go to accessibility notice


    Leo II and Zeno, Eastern Roman Empire (AD 474). AV solidus (21mm, 4.42 gm, 6h). NGC MS 5/5 - 1/5, plugged. Constantinople, 10th officina, February-November AD 474. D N LEO ET Z-ENO P P AVG, pearl-diademed, helmeted and cuirassed facing bust (of Zeno?), head slightly right, spear in right hand over shoulder, shield in left decorated with horseman motif / SALVS REI-PVBLICAE I, Leo II (on left) and Zeno (on right) enthroned facing, each nimbate, diademed and wearing imperial mantle, mappa in right hands; cross above, CONOB in exergue. RIC X 803.

    From the Morris Collection.

    During his long, tumultuous reign, Leo I "The Great" relied on a Romanized Isaurian chieftain, Zeno, to do much of the reign's heavy lifting and dirty work. To cement the relationship, he married his daughter Ariadne to Zeno; about AD 467 she bore him a son who was named Leo after his grandfather. When Leo I died on January 18, 474, the child ascended to the Eastern Roman Throne as Leo II, but it soon became clear he needed a protector and the Byzantine Senate named his father Zeno as co-Augustus on February 9. The child fell ill toward the end of the year and died in November, leaving the unpopular Zeno as sole ruler. Rumors flourished that Zeno had poisoned his own son, but this seems as unlikely as it was unnecessary.

    The very rare gold coinage of the brief joint reign depicts an armored figure on the obverse, presumably Zeno, while the reverse depicts the two rulers seated in a double throne. Interestingly, the smaller of the two figures, Leo II, is seated to the left, in the "senior" position.

    View all of [The Morris Collection ]

    View Certification Details from NGC

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    January, 2019
    6th-7th Sunday-Monday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 9
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 244

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

    Sold on Jan 7, 2019 for: Sign-in or Join (free & quick)
    Track Item

    Heritage membership

    Join Now - It's Free

    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
    Consign now
    • Cash Advances
    • More Bidders
    • Trusted Experts
    • Over 200,000 Satisfied Consignors Since 1976
    Only 2 days left to consign to the 2021 May 5 - 7 World and Ancient Coins Platinum Night Auction - Dallas!

    Learn about consigning with us

    I found it reassuring that your appraisal of my coin was realistic.
    J.G. ,
    Red Rock, TX
    View More Testimonials receives more traffic than any other auction house website. (Source:

    Video tutorial

    Getting the most out of search