You are here:Home/Resources/ Byzantine Seals/ Search the Catalogue/ Theophylaktos bishop of Tralleis (eleventh century)

Theophylaktos bishop of Tralleis (eleventh century)

Accession number BZS.1955.1.4689
Diameter 21 mm
Condition Corroded.
Previous Editions

DO Seals 3, no. 38.5c.


Bust of the Virgin orans. On either side the sigla: ̅-θ̅υ : Μή(τη)ρ Θ(εο)ῦ. Within a border of dots, a circular inscription:


Θ(εοτό)κε β(οή)θ(ει) τῷ σῷ δ(ούλῳ)


Inscription of five lines, a decoration above, last line between two pellets. Border of dots.

– ·
· ν ·

Θεοφυλάκτῳ ἐπισκόπ(ῳ) Τράλεων


Θεοτόκε βοήθει τῷ σῷ δούλῳ Θεοφυλάκτῳ ἐπισκόπῳ Τράλεων.

Mother of God, help your servant Theophylaktos, bishop of Tralleis.


This seal, BZS.1958.106.1893, and BZS.1951.31.5.2941 appear to issue from the same boulloterion.

These are two bishoprics of this name, both within the Thrakesion theme, and it is impossible to attribute our seals separately to either one. Laurent assigned all seals with this placename to Tralleis of Asia without explaining the reason for his choice.

1. Tralleis of Asia (today Aydin) was a suffragan bishopric of Ephesos and appears as such in all notitiae. Its bishops are attested from the fifth to the thirteenth centuries. See Laurent, Corpus V/1, 186; Culerrier, Suffragants d'Ephèse, 159-160 (episcopal list); Zgusta, 630 ff; ODB III, 2103-4.

2. Tralle of Lydia (unknown site, close to the frontier with Phrygia) is usually spelled Τράλλης or Τράλλων in the notitiae where it appears as a suffragan bishopric of Sardeis (Darrouzès, Notitiae, index, s.v.). It is probable that this name has a different etymology than Tralleis. See Zgusta, 632.

The only criterion by which to distinguish between one and the other would appear to be the spelling. But even this cannot be considered a secure criterion: the form Τράλλεων is also attested for the bishopric of Lydia (Darrouzès, Notitiae, no. 4, line 161; no. 10, line 103), and the parallel case of Sardeis/Sarde shows that there was no consistent use of the first or the third declension forms. In order to avoid confusion between the two sees, the bishops attending councils noted in their signatures that they came from the Asian or the Lydian Tralleis. See Le Quien, Oriens Christianus I, 695-98.

Accession number BZS.1955.1.4689
Diameter 21 mm
Condition Corroded.
Previous Editions

DO Seals 3, no. 38.5c.