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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Byzantine Coins ▸ Justinian Dynasty ▸ Justinian IView Options:  |  |  | 

Justinian I, 4 April 527 - 14 November 565 A.D.

Joint rule with Justin I (his uncle), 4 April - 1 August 527 A.D.
Justinian I served his uncle, Emperor Justin I, throughout his reign formulating most imperial policy. Recognizing his brilliance, he was rapidly promoted and in the final months of Justin's reign, he was made co-emperor. Justinian's sole rule began on 1 August 527 and lasted almost four decades during which he re-conquered much of the empire lost during the preceding century, including North Africa, Italy, and parts of Spain. He is well known for his codification of the legal system. His grand scale building program included St Sophia, which still stands as the centerpiece of modern Istanbul. Unfortunately, his ambitious efforts strained the empire's resources and depleted the treasure built by Anastasius. Most of the territory he gained was lost shortly after his death.
Byzantine Empire under Justinian 550 AD


Lot of 2 Choice Fine Byzantine Folles with Nice Patinas - Anastasius and Justinian I

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Anastasius I, 11 April 491 - 1 July 518 A.D., Follis, 15.949g, 35.3mm, 1st officina, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey), struck 498 - 518 A.D., DOC I 23a, Hahn MIB I 27, SBCV 19.

Justinian I, 4 April 527 - 14 November 565 A.D., Follis, 16.510g, 29.7mm, 5th officina, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey), struck 527 - 538 A.D., DOC I 29, Hahn MIBE 87, SBCV 159.
LT84638. Bronze follis, Choice Fine, dark patinas with earthen highlighting, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, obverse diademed, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse large M (40 nummi), cross above, star or cross left and right, officina below, CON (Constantinople) in exergue; $180.00 (€160.20)
 


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The war with the Vandalic Kingdom of Carthage in 533 - 534 was the first of Justinian I's wars of reconquest of the lost Western Roman Empire. The Vandals had occupied Roman North Africa in the early 5th century and established an independent kingdom. The Byzantine expeditionary force landed on the African coast in early September 533. The Vandal king Gelimer met the Byzantine army at the Battle of Ad Decimum, near Carthage, on 13 September. His elaborate plan to encircle and destroy the Byzantines came close to success, but Belisarius forced a Vandal retreat and occupied Carthage. Gelimer withdrew, gathered his remaining strength, and in December advanced towards Carthage and met the Romans at the Battle of Tricamarum. Gelimer was defeated and fled to a remote mountain fortress, where he was blockaded until he surrendered in the spring. Belisarius returned to Constantinople with the Vandals' royal treasure and the captive Gelimer to enjoy a triumph. Africa was formally restored to imperial rule as the praetorian prefecture of Africa. The new province faced war with the Moors and military rebellions, and it was not until 548 that peace was restored and Roman government firmly established.The Vandalic War in 533-534

SL84527. Silver siliqua, SBCV 254, Sommer 4.119, Hahn MIB 53, Morrisson BnF 8, Tolsotoi 575, BMC p. 81, 4 (Ostrogothic), DOC I -, Ratto -, ANACS VF20 (4625611), Carthage (near Tunis, Tunisia) mint, 537 - 552 A.D.; obverse D N IVSTINIANVS P P AC, diademed, draped and cuirassed bust right, from the front; reverse monogram , cross above, S below (unstruck), all within linear border surrounded by wreath; from the Dr. Sam Mansourati Collection, certified (slabbed) by ANACS; scarce; $160.00 (€142.40)
 


Byzantine Empire, Justin I and Justinian I, 4 April - 1 August 527 A.D.

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During Justin's reign (518–527), Justinian was the emperor's close confidant and was probably acting as a regent long before Justin made him co-emperor on 1 April 527. Justinian was appointed consul in 521 and later commander of the army of the east. As Justin became senile near the end of his reign, Justinian became the de facto ruler. Upon Justin's death on 1 August 527, Justinian became the sole sovereign.
BZ83458. Bronze follis, DOC I 10b, Morrisson BnF 3/Cp/AE/1, Berk 112, SBCV 125, Hahn MIB I 4, Sommer 3.5, Wroth BMC 7 var. (P vice PP), Tolstoi 144 var. (same), Ratto -, F, irregular flan, large flan crack/flaw, weight 14.590 g, maximum diameter 34.4 mm, die axis 180o, 2nd officina, Constantinople mint, 4 Apr - 1 Aug 527 A.D.; obverse D N IVSTIN ET IVSTINIAN P P AVΓ, diademed, draped and cuirassed bust of Justin right; reverse large M (40 nummi), cross above, six-pointed star left, cross right, B (2nd officina) below, CON (Constantinope) in exergue; rare; $125.00 (€111.25)
 


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Justinian's sole rule lasted almost four decades. He re-conquered North Africa, Italy, and parts of Spain, codified the legal system and built St. Sophia. Unfortunately, most of his territory gains were lost shortly after his death.
BZ77952. Bronze follis, DOC I 38a, Wroth BMC 47, Morrisson 4/Cp/AE/36, Tolstoi 97, Ratto 498, Sommer 4.20.4, Hahn MIB 95a, SBCV 163, F, rough, pit on reverse, weight 19.560 g, maximum diameter 41.0 mm, die axis 180o, 1st officina, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, 539 - 540 A.D.; obverse D N IVSTINIANVS PP AVG, helmeted and cuirassed bust facing, globus cruciger in right, shield on left, cross right; reverse large M (40 nummi), cross above, ANNO left, regnal year X/III (regnal year 13) right, A (1st officina) below, CON (Constantinople) in exergue; $80.00 (€71.20)
 


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In 562, Belisarius stood trial for corruption in Constantinople, possibly with Procopius acting as praefectus urbi. He was found guilty and sent to prison.
BZ67007. Bronze decanummium, DOC I 353 (Ravenna), Wroth BMC 407 (Ravenna), SBCV 326 (Ravenna), Hahn MIB I 29a (Rome), Sommer 4.155 (Rome), Ratto -, F, nice green patina, weight 2.846 g, maximum diameter 15.7 mm, die axis 180o, Ravenna or Rome mint, 562 - 563 A.D.; obverse D N IVSTINIANVS PP AVG, helmeted and cuirassed bust facing, holding globus cruciger in right, shield in left; reverse large I (10 nummi), ANNO left, XX/XVI (regnal year 36) right, all within wreath, no mintmark; $55.00 (€48.95)
 


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BZ75996. Bronze decanummium, imitative; for prototype, see DOC I 158 (Byzantine official, Nikomedia mint, 561 - 562 A.D.), F, green patina, weight 1.813 g, maximum diameter 14.7 mm, die axis 180o, unofficial mint, c. 562 - 580 A.D.; obverse D N IVSTINIANVS P P AVG, diademed, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse large I surmounted by a cross between ANNO and X/XX/U (or similar), NIK in exergue; $45.00 (€40.05)
 


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In spring 593, Priscus, commander-in-chief in Thrace, defeated the Slavic tribes and Gepids on Byzantine territory south of the Danube. He crossed the river to fight in the uncharted swamps and forests of modern-day Wallachia. In autumn, Maurice ordered Priscus to spend the winter with his troops on the northern Danube bank, but he disobeyed the emperor's order and retreated to the port city of Odessus (Varna) on the Black Sea Coast.
BZ77956. Bronze decanummium, DOC I 266, Wroth BMC 338, Tolstoi 442, Sommer 7.107, Hahn MIB 160a, SBCV 239, Morrisson BnF - (p. 99, refs. Wroth), Ratto -, F, uneven strike, obverse off-center, corrosion, weight 2.727 g, maximum diameter 19.3 mm, die axis 135o, Theoupolis (Antioch) mint, 563 - 564 A.D.; obverse [...] - ΛOSLE (blundered nonsense), helmeted and cuirassed bust facing, helmet with plum, diadem and trefoil ornament, globus cruciger in right hand, shield with horseman ornamentation on left shoulder, cross in right field; reverse large I (10 nummi), between A/N/N/O and X/X/X/UII (year 37), cross above, THEUP (Theoupolis) in exergue; from the Butte College Foundation, ex Lindgren; $34.00 (€30.26)
 







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REFERENCES

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Catalog current as of Thursday, April 27, 2017.
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Byzantine Coins of Justinian I