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Herakleios and Herakleios Constantine (613–ca. 616)

Accession number BZS.1955.1.4258 (formerly DO 55.1.4258)
Diameter 22 mm
Previous Editions

DO Seals 6, no. 13.1; Zacos–Veglery, no. 11a.


Bust of the emperor Herakleios at left, with a short beard, and a tiny bust of Herakleios Constantine at right. Each wears a crown and a chlamys. Herakleios wears his hair long at the sides and curled inward. A small cross in the upper field. Remains of a circular inscription beginning at left. Indeterminate border.


D(omini) n(ostri) Her[aclius et Hera(clius) Const(antinus) p(er)p(etui) aug(usti)].




Domini nostri Heraclius et Heraclius Constantinus perpetui augusti.

Our lords Herakleios and Herakleios Constantine, eternal augusti.


The seals below bear depictions of Herakleios with a short beard and of his son Herakleios Constantine in diminutive bust. The latter was born in May of 612 to Herakleios’s first wife, Eudokia. On coins (see DOC 2.1:8j2; MIB 3: Prägetabelle 1, nos. 8–10) from the first three years after his son’s crowning Herakleios is represented with a short beard and is accompanied by a diminutive bust of Herakleios Constantine.

Seibt (Bleisiegel, 69) has employed the following criteria for classifying and dating seals, from 613–616, with representations of Herakleios and Herakleios Constantine. (1) 613–ca. 614: Herakleios Constantine (small); style of hair: inward curl. (2) 613–16: imperial representations remain the same; reverse blank. (3) 614–16: the Virgin’s right leg is bent. As possible examples of the latter he cites Zacos–Veglery, nos. 12a and c.

For a discussion of the emperor’s hair, particularly asymmetrical sidelocks, which also occur on coins, see DOC 2.1: p. 93.