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George Palaiologos, kouropalates and doux of Dyrrachion (about 1081)

 
 

Obverse

Bust of the Virgin orans with medallion of Christ on her breast. Sigla: ̅ΘΥ̅ : Μήτηρ Θεοῦ. Border of dots.

Reverse

Inscription of seven lines. No visible border.

ΘΚΕΘ
ΓΕΡΓΙ
ΚΡΟΠΑΛΑ
ΤΔΚΙΔΥ
.ΑΧΙΤ
.ΑΛΟΛΟ
.

Θεοτόκε βοήθει Γεωργίῳ κουροπαλάτ καὶ δουκὶ Δυρραχίου τῷ Παλαιολόγ

Obverse

Bust of the Virgin orans with medallion of Christ on her breast. Sigla: ̅ΘΥ̅ : Μήτηρ Θεοῦ. Border of dots.

Reverse

Inscription of seven lines. No visible border.

ΘΚΕΘ
ΓΕΡΓΙ
ΚΡΟΠΑΛΑ
ΤΔΚΙΔΥ
.ΑΧΙΤ
.ΑΛΟΛΟ
.

Θεοτόκε βοήθει Γεωργίῳ κουροπαλάτ καὶ δουκὶ Δυρραχίου τῷ Παλαιολόγ

Accession number BZS.1947.2.1228
Diameter 28.0 mm; field: 22.0 mm
Previous Editions

DO Seals 1, no. 12.2.
Cheynet-Vannier, 139.

Translation

Θεοτόκε βοήθει Γεωργίῳ κουροπαλάτῃ καὶ δουκὶ Δυρραχίου τῷ Παλαιολόγῳ.

Theotokos, help George Palaiologos kouropalates and doux of Dyrrachion.

Commentary

George Palaiologos, the son of Nikephoros Palaiologos and husband of Anna Doukaina, was sent to defend Dyrrachion against the Normans after George Monomachatos (two of whose seals are published by V. Šandrovskaja in Palestinskij Sbornik 23 [86] [1971] 36) had deserted to the Serbs (see Skoulatos, Personnages, 99-105, and Cheynet-Vannier, 137-41). He was wounded and, having abandoned the city, participated in a disastrous battle for the Byzantines against the Normans in October 1081. He was later active in various campaigns and is known to have been in contact with scholars of his time. He died after 1110, probably ca. 1120. He may have been the founder of a "monastery of St. Demetrios of the Palaiologans" in Constantinople, which Janin, Eglises, 92, ascribed to the dynasty's predilection for the cult of this saint. We note, however, that among the seals of the early Palaiologoi there is no clear evidence of any specific cult tendencies. Indeed, among the many seals cited by Cheynet and Vannier, only one is decorated with a bust of St. Demetrios (no. 5). All the rest bear images of St. Nicholas, St. George, or, as in the case of the present specimen, the Virgin.