You are here:Home/Resources/ Byzantine Seals/ Search the Catalogue/ Herakleios, Herakleios Constantine, and Heraklonas (638–41)

Herakleios, Herakleios Constantine, and Heraklonas (638–41)

 
 

Obverse

The Mother of God standing, wearing a chiton and maphorion, and holding Christ before her. Her left leg is bent at the knee. A cross potent visible at right. Wreath border.

Reverse

Three emperors standing (the one at right is on the missing half): in center, Herakleios (facial details lost), and at left, Heraklonas, beardless. Both figures wear a crown with a cross and a chlamys and hold a globus cruciger in their right hands. Both wear their hair long at the sides and curled. No inscription. Wreath border.

Obverse

The Mother of God standing, wearing a chiton and maphorion, and holding Christ before her. Her left leg is bent at the knee. A cross potent visible at right. Wreath border.

Reverse

Three emperors standing (the one at right is on the missing half): in center, Herakleios (facial details lost), and at left, Heraklonas, beardless. Both figures wear a crown with a cross and a chlamys and hold a globus cruciger in their right hands. Both wear their hair long at the sides and curled. No inscription. Wreath border.

Accession number BZS.1951.31.5.1641
Diameter 26.0 mm
Previous Editions

DO Seals 6, no. 17.12.

Credit Line Harvard Art Museums/Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Bequest of Thomas Whittemore.

Commentary

The empress Martina’s eldest surviving son, Heraklonas, who was born in Lazica in 625 or 626, was raised to the rank of caesar on 1 January 632 and became an augustus in July of 638.  Early coins depict a diminutive Heraklonas wearing a cap with a cross above his head.  The transition from cap to crown with cross is generally considered as signalling Heraklonas’s rise to augustus.  The increasing size of Heraklonas relative to Herakleios Constantine marks the passage of years.