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Leontius magister militum Byzacena (sixth century)

Accession number BZS.1947.2.230
Diameter 22 mm
Previous Editions

DO Seals 1, no. 6.2.
Zacos-Veglery, no. 2898a. A second specimen, from a different boulloterion, was first published by Mordtmann (BZ 14 [1906] 614, with a drawing, mistakenly described as a seal of Emperor Leontios), and then by Zacos-Veglery, no. 2898b (correct reading).

Obverse

Inscription of four lines. Border of dots.

ES
AITA
LEON
II

Deus adiuta Leontii

Reverse

Inscription of three lines. No visible border.

MAIS
ROMIL
ZAC

magistro militum Uuzacenae

Translation

Deus adiuta Leontii magistro militum Uuzacenae.

God, help Leontius magister militum of Byzacena.

Commentary

In the wake of Belisarios' conquest of Africa in 534, Byzacena was placed under the civil administration of a consular governor and under the military control of a doux. Its administrative boundaries corresponded to the Diocletianic province of Valeria Byzacena. In a rescript of 534, Justinian decreed two ducal headquarters: one at Capsa and the other at Thelepte. A third ducal residence was established at Sufetela by the seventh century, if not earlier. The Thracian Himerius, who campaigned against Stotzas in 545, is the first attested doux. Yet one has to note that on their seals the known military governors of Byzacena bear the title of magister militum, and not the (inferior) one of dux mentioned in the Justinianic legislation. Is this a change that came with time? Cf. Pringle, Byzantine Africa, 62 and 63.

Accession number BZS.1947.2.230
Diameter 22 mm
Previous Editions

DO Seals 1, no. 6.2.
Zacos-Veglery, no. 2898a. A second specimen, from a different boulloterion, was first published by Mordtmann (BZ 14 [1906] 614, with a drawing, mistakenly described as a seal of Emperor Leontios), and then by Zacos-Veglery, no. 2898b (correct reading).

Accession number BZS.1947.2.230
Diameter 22 mm
Previous Editions

DO Seals 1, no. 6.2.
Zacos-Veglery, no. 2898a. A second specimen, from a different boulloterion, was first published by Mordtmann (BZ 14 [1906] 614, with a drawing, mistakenly described as a seal of Emperor Leontios), and then by Zacos-Veglery, no. 2898b (correct reading).

Notes

Accession number BZS.1947.2.230
Diameter 22 mm
Previous Editions

DO Seals 1, no. 6.2.
Zacos-Veglery, no. 2898a. A second specimen, from a different boulloterion, was first published by Mordtmann (BZ 14 [1906] 614, with a drawing, mistakenly described as a seal of Emperor Leontios), and then by Zacos-Veglery, no. 2898b (correct reading).

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