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Constantinople, Ca. AD 751-775

Constantine V and Leo IV Av. solidus, Constantinople. CONSTANTI[N]OS S LEON O NEOS; crowned facing busts of Constantine, with short beard, on left and Leo IV, unbearded, on right; each wearing crown and chlamys; dot between heads, cross above. Rev. G LE ON PA MU or MUL θ; crowned facing bust of Leo III, wearing loros and holding cross potent. DOC III 2c; BN 6-10; SB 1551. 

This coin demonstrates the preference of the Isaurian dynasty for family portraiture on their coinage, done to advertise the greatness of previous kings and accustom the subjects of the Byzantine Empire to future rulers.

The reverse design depicts the father of Constantine V (the primary emperor of the time), Leo III. The obverse design represents Leo IV, the son of Constantine V, alongside his father. The busts on this coin are fashioned in a linear manner, with subtle details such as the more gaunt face and forward positioning of Constantine V denoting the difference between the co-emperors.

For additional information see:
Giakalis, A., 2005, Images of the Divine: The Theology of Icons at the Seventh Ecumenical Council - Revised Edition. Leiden.


SKU: CAT-004
  • Dimensions 

    D: 20mm ; 4.38g


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