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Justinian I (527–65)?

 
 

Obverse

Bust of the Mother of God wearing a chiton and maphorion. A small cross at left and right. No visible border.

Reverse

Nimbate, beardless bust of Justinian I, head turned slightly to the right, wearing a crown with pendilia and a chlamys. Remains of a circular inscription at left. No visible border.

DNIVSTI. . .

D(ominus) n(oster) Iusti[nianus p(er)p(etuus) aug(ustus)].

Obverse

Bust of the Mother of God wearing a chiton and maphorion. A small cross at left and right. No visible border.

Reverse

Nimbate, beardless bust of Justinian I, head turned slightly to the right, wearing a crown with pendilia and a chlamys. Remains of a circular inscription at left. No visible border.

DNIVSTI. . .

D(ominus) n(oster) Iusti[nianus p(er)p(etuus) aug(ustus)].

Accession number BZS.1955.1.4249 (formerly DO 55.1.4249)
Diameter 21.0 mm
Previous Editions

DO Seals 6, no. 6.1; Zacos–Veglery, no. 4.

Translation

Dominus noster Iustinianus perpetuus augustus.

Our lord Justinian, eternal augustus.

Commentary

The inscription on the reverse could be completed as IVSTINVS, and indeed Seibt has assigned it to the reign of Justin II and the period ca. 574–78 (see Seibt, “Die Darstellung der Theotokos,” 36 and the caption to illustration no. 1). But Zacos–Veglery, which the present entry follows, argues that the spacing of the letters better accommodates the reading IVSTINIANVS. The Mother of God is probably holding Christ or has a medallion of Christ before her, but this is uncertain due to wear.