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Manuel I Komnenos, Electrum, Trikephalon (Aspron Trachy), Thessalonike, 1143-1180

 
 

Obverse

Virgin nimbate wearing tunic and maphorion and seated upon backless throne. Holds beardless nimbate head of Christ against breast.  Θ to left and right.

Reverse

Manuel I Komnenos standing, beardless, and nimbate, wearing stemma, divitision, and chlamys. Akakia in right hand, labarum on long shaft held in left hand with St. George. Saint wears short military tunic and breastplate.

Obverse

Virgin nimbate wearing tunic and maphorion and seated upon backless throne. Holds beardless nimbate head of Christ against breast.  Θ to left and right.

Reverse

Manuel I Komnenos standing, beardless, and nimbate, wearing stemma, divitision, and chlamys. Akakia in right hand, labarum on long shaft held in left hand with St. George. Saint wears short military tunic and breastplate.

Accession number BZC.2000.6
Ruler Manuel I Komnenos
Date of Reign 1143–1180
Metal Electrum
Denomination Trikephalon (Aspron Trachy)
Mint Thessalonike
Date 11431180
Diameter 27.0 mm
Weight 1.94 g
Relation of Dies 12:00
Shape Cup
Condition Clipped and hammered

Commentary

This is a Manuel I aspron trachy of type DOC 4.1:304–5, no. 9, which depicts Manuel and St. Demetrios depicted on the reverse. 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. 374, September 2000