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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Roman Coins ▸ The Late Empire ▸ Leo IView Options:  |  |  | 

Leo I, 7 February 457 - 18 January 474 A.D.

Leo I, a native of Dacia, assumed the purple after the death of Marcian in 457 A.D. Leo came to the throne at a time when the Eastern Roman army was made up almost entirely of Germans, and it is through the efforts of Leo that the powerful German military faction's influence was destroyed. After being struck down by illness, he raised his infant grandson to the purple, then died shortly after.


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Verina was the highly ambitious and capable wife of Emperor Leo I. After the death of her husband she continued to exercise great influence in the governing of the Empire. She was responsible for inciting two failed rebellions against Zeno, first by her brother Basiliscus in 475 - 476 A.D and then by Leontius in 484 - 488 A.D. She died at the fortress of Cherris in 484 A.D.
RL60348. Bronze AE 4, RIC X 713 - 718, aVF, weight 0.763 g, maximum diameter 10.0 mm, die axis 0o, obverse [D N] LEO, pearl-diademed, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse Empress Verina standing facing holding cross on globe and transverse scepter, b - E across fields; scarce; $45.00 (40.05)


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In 467, Vandal pirates raided, sacked and enslaved the people living in Illyricum, the Peloponnese and other parts of Greece. In 468, Leo spent 64,000 pounds of gold (more than a year's revenue and bringing Leo near to bankruptcy) to assemble a fleet of over 1,100 ships carrying 100,000 men. During peace negotiations the Vandal King Genseric used fire ships, filled with brushwood and pots of oil, to destroy 700 imperial galleys 45 miles from Carthage. The defeated General Basiliscus escaped back to Constantinople where he was forced to seek sanctuary in the church of Hagia Sophia to escape the wrath of the people. Leo I gave him an imperial pardon, but banished him for 3 years to Heraclea Sintica (Thrace).
RL62189. Bronze AE4, RIC X 674, gF, weight 0.941 g, maximum diameter 9.8 mm, die axis 0o, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, obverse D N LEO P F AVG, pearl diademed, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse lion crouching left, head right, CON (Constantinople) in exergue; ragged irregular flan; $36.00 (32.04)


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RL60355. Copper AE4, cf. RIC X 686 - 688, SRCV 4342, VF, weight 1.001 g, maximum diameter 9.4 mm, die axis 0o, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, obverse [D N LE]OS P[ F AVG] (or similar), pearl diademed and draped bust right; reverse Leo's Latin monogram within wreath; scarce; $36.00 (32.04)







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OBVERSE LEGENDS

DNLEOPERPETAV
DNLEOPERPETAVG
DNLEOPERPETVVSAVG
DNLEOPFAVG


REFERENCES

Carson, R., P. Hill & J. Kent. Late Roman Bronze Coinage. (London, 1960).
Cohen, H. Description historique des monnaies frappes sous l'Empire Romain, Vol. 8: Nepotian to Romulus Augustus, plus tesserae & cotorniates. (Paris, 1888).
Depeyrot, G. Les monnaies d'or de Constantin II Zenon (337-491). Moneta 5. (Wetteren, 1996).
Grierson, P. & M. Mays. Catalogue of Late Roman Coins in the Dumbarton Oaks Collection. (Washington D.C., 1992).
Hahn, Wolfgang. Moneta Imperii Romani-Byzantinii. (Vienna, 1989).
Kent, J. P. C. The Roman Imperial Coinage, Volume X, The Divided Empire and the Fall of the Western Parts, AD 395 - 491. (London, 1994).
King, C.E. & D.R. Sear. Roman Silver Coins, Volume V, Carausius to Romulus Augustus. (London, 1987).
Ranieri, E. La monetazione di Ravenna antica dal V all' VIII secolo: impero romano e bizantino, regno ostrogoto e langobardo. (Bologna, 2006).
Robinson, A. Roman Imperial Coins in the Hunter Coin Cabinet, University of Glasgow, Vol. V. Diocletian (Reform) to Zeno. (Oxford, 1982).
Sear, D.R. Roman Coins and Their Values, Vol. V: The Christian Empire...Constantine II to Zeno, AD 337 - 491. (London, 2014).
Vagi, D. Coinage and History of the Roman Empire. (Sidney, 1999).

Catalog current as of Monday, February 20, 2017.
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Roman Coins of Leo I