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Leo spatharokandidatos and episkeptites of Mesanakta (tenth/eleventh century)

 
 

Obverse

Bust of St. Nicholas blessing and holding a book. Vertical inscription: |ΝΙ|Κ,Λ|ΑΟ|Σ : Ὁ ἅ(γιος) Νικ(ό)λαος. Border of dots.

Reverse

Inscription of seven lines. Border of dots.

ΚΕ.ΗΘ,
ΛΟΝΤΗ
ΣΠΑΘΑΡΟ
Κ,ΔΔ,ΠΗΣ
ΚΠΤΗΤΗ
ΤΟΝΜΣΑΝ,
ΚΤΟΝ

Κ(ύρι)ε [β(ο)]ήθ(ει) Λέοντη σπαθαροκ(αν)δ(ι)δ(άτῳ) (καὶ) ἐπησκεπτήτῃ τον Μεσαν(ά)κτον

Obverse

Bust of St. Nicholas blessing and holding a book. Vertical inscription: |ΝΙ|Κ,Λ|ΑΟ|Σ : Ὁ ἅ(γιος) Νικ(ό)λαος. Border of dots.

Reverse

Inscription of seven lines. Border of dots.

ΚΕ.ΗΘ,
ΛΟΝΤΗ
ΣΠΑΘΑΡΟ
Κ,ΔΔ,ΠΗΣ
ΚΠΤΗΤΗ
ΤΟΝΜΣΑΝ,
ΚΤΟΝ

Κ(ύρι)ε [β(ο)]ήθ(ει) Λέοντη σπαθαροκ(αν)δ(ι)δ(άτῳ) (καὶ) ἐπησκεπτήτῃ τον Μεσαν(ά)κτον

Accession number BZS.1955.1.2477
Diameter 25.0 mm; field: 23.0 mm
Previous Editions

DO Seals 3, no. 58.1.

Translation

Κύριε βοήθει Λέοντη σπαθαροκανδιδάτῳ καὶ ἐπησκεπτήτῃ τον Μεσανάκτον.

Lord, help Leo, spatharokandidatos and episkeptites of Mesanakta.

Commentary

J.-Cl. Cheynet deciphered the present specimen and reported a parallel seal in the IFEB Collection.

Mesonakta was also called Dipotamon and known to be an imperial domain (χωρίον βασιλικόν: Skylitzes, 320); hence the administrators are called protokourator and episkeptites: it was situated in the vicinity of Dorylaion, Kotyaion, and Philomelion in Phrygia, on the military road to the East and on the shore of an otherwise unknown lake of the Forty Martyrs. The historians give the spelling Μεσάνακτα, which sounds more Greek. It would seem that Mesonakta had a special connection with St. Nicholas, who is depicted on both our seals. See Phrygien und Pisidien, 338-339.

Bibliography

  • Catalogue of Byzantine Seals at Dumbarton Oaks and at the Fogg Museum of Art, Vol. 3: West, Northwest, and Central Asia Minor and the Orient (Open in Zotero)
  • Épiskeptitai et autres gestionnaires des biens publics (d’après les sceaux de l’IFEB) (Open in Zotero)
  • Phrygien und Pisidien (Open in Zotero)
  • Ioannis Scylitzae Synopsis historiarum (Open in Zotero)