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John Komnenos Doukas (1240-42)

Accession Number:
BZS.1955.1.4356 (formerly DO 55.1.4356)

Previous Editions

DO Seals 6 no. 100.1; Zacos-Veglery no. 115

Details

Diameter:
43 mm
Weight:
35.53 g
Condition:
Seemingly double struck.

Obverse

John Komnenos Doukas (1240-42)

Two standing figures. At left, the emperor wears a crown and loros and holds a short labarum in his right hand, an akakia in his left. At right, St. Demetrios, wearing a cuirass and holding a square shield, places his hand on the emperor’s shoulder. Visible in the background are the crenellated walls of Thessalonike. Inscription identifying the saint: (ὁ ἅγιος) Δ(η)μ(ήτριος). Traces of an inscription identifying the emperor. Border of dots.

John Komnenos Doukas (1240-42)

[Ἰ]ω(άννης) [δ]ε[σπό]τη[ς]

John, despotes

Reverse

John Komnenos Doukas (1240-42)

Inscription of eight lines. Border of dots.

John Komnenos Doukas (1240-42)

Ἰω(άννης) ἐ[ν] Χριστῷ τῷ Θεῷ πιστὸς βασιλεὺς καὶ αὐτοκράτορ Ῥωμέων Κομνηνὸς ὁ Δούκας.

Translation

Ἰωάννης ἐν Χριστῷ τῷ Θεῷ πιστὸς βασιλεὺς καὶ αὐτοκράτορ Ῥωμέων Κομνηνὸς ὁ Δούκας.

John Komnenos Doukas, basileus faithful to Christ the Lord and autokrator of the Romans.

Audio

Commentary

The inscription on the reverse is followed by a decoration resembling a colon.

In addition to the type of seal published here, John also employed a seal of simpler design. The obverse bears a depiction of Christ standing, holding the right hand in blessing; on the reverse appears a representation of John standing, holding a cross scepter in the right hand and an akakia in the left. See Seibt–Zarnitz, no. 1.1.11.

This seal was illustrated in Oikonomides, Byzantine Lead Seals,no. 52, and C. Morrisson, "The Emperor, the Saint, and the City: Coinage and Money in Thessalonike from the Thirteenth to the Fifteenth Century," DOP 57 (2003) no. 15.

 

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