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Manuel I Komnenos, Electrum, Trikephalon (Aspron Trachy), Constantinople, 1143-1152?

 
 

Obverse

Frontal bust of Christ Emmanuel, beardless and nimbate, wearing tunic and kolobion. Scroll in left hand. Pellet in each limb of nimbus cross. Traces of inscription: Ι̅Σ̅|Ο|ΕΜ|ΜΑ.

Reverse

Manuel I Komnenos, beardless, standing and being crowned by Virgin. Emperor wears stemma, divitision, collar-piece, and jeweled loros of simplified type. Labarum-headed scepter in right hand, akakia in left hand. Virgin wears tunic and maphorion.

Obverse

Frontal bust of Christ Emmanuel, beardless and nimbate, wearing tunic and kolobion. Scroll in left hand. Pellet in each limb of nimbus cross. Traces of inscription: Ι̅Σ̅|Ο|ΕΜ|ΜΑ.

Reverse

Manuel I Komnenos, beardless, standing and being crowned by Virgin. Emperor wears stemma, divitision, collar-piece, and jeweled loros of simplified type. Labarum-headed scepter in right hand, akakia in left hand. Virgin wears tunic and maphorion.

Accession number BZC.2000.5
Catalogue ID as DOC 4.1:296, no. 2a
Ruler Manuel I Komnenos
Date of Reign 1143–1180
Metal Electrum
Denomination Trikephalon (Aspron Trachy)
Mint Constantinople
Date 11431152?
Diameter 31.0 mm
Weight 2.14 g
Relation of Dies 1:00
Shape Cup

Commentary

In the thirteenth century, the coin was clipped by hammering out the edges so that it expanded. It was then clipped down to its original size and this has resulted in the lack of detail of the outer parts of the design, the extreme thinness of the edge and the low weight, about half that of the original. See N. Kapamadj and C. Morrisson, “Trachéa d’électrum légers de Jean II et Manuel I Comnène” and S. Bendall and D. Sellwood, “Clipped Twelfth-Century Byzantine Electrum Trachea.”

Acquisition History

Elsen, Liste 211, no. 373, September 2000