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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Byzantine Coins| ▸ |Isaurian Dynasty| ▸ |Leo IV||View Options:  |  |  |   

Leo IV the Khazar, 6 June 751 - 8 September 780 A.D.

Joint rule as junior emperor with Constantine V (his father), 6 June 751 - 14 September 775 A.D.
Joint rule with Constantine VI (his son), 24 April 776 - 8 September 780 A.D.
Leo was the son of Constantine V by his first wife, Irene of Khazaria the daughter of a Khagan of the Khazars. He was crowned co-emperor by his father in 751. In 775 Constantine V died, leaving Leo as sole emperor. Leo, following the precedent set by his father and grandfather, appointed his son, Constantine VI, co-emperor. Leo's five half-brothers who had hoped to gain the throne rebelled by were defeated and exiled. The third Abbasid Caliph, Al-Mahdi, repeatedly invaded during Leo's reign but was repulsed by Leo's armies. Leo IV was raised as an iconoclast but, pursuing a path of conciliation, Leo allowed monks, persecuted and deported under his father, to return to their monasteries He was anointed as "Friend to the Mother of God" for allowing monks to retain images of the Theotokos. Leo also appointed an iconophile sympathizer as the patriarch of Constantinople. At the end of his reign, however, Leo reversed his stance of toleration. Leo died of fever while on campaign against the Bulgars. Constantine VI succeeded his father as emperor, ruling jointly with his mother, Irene.


Byzantine Empire, Constantine V and Leo IV, 6 June 751 - 14 September 775 A.D.

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In 773, the mathematical concept of the number zero was introduced in Baghdad.
BZ82501. Bronze follis, Anastasi 434; DOC III part 1, 19; Wroth BMC 35; Tolstoi 53; Ratto 1757; SBCV 1569; Sommer 23.11, nice VF, weight 3.468 g, maximum diameter 20.0 mm, die axis 180o, Sicily, Syracuse mint, obverse K - ΛE/O/N, Constantine V and Leo IV, each stand facing wearing crown and chlamys and holding akakia, cross between heads; reverse Λ/E/O/N - ∆/E/C/Π, Leo III standing facing, bearded, wearing crown and chlamys, cross potent in right hand; scarce; SOLD


Byzantine Empire, Constantine V and Leo IV, 6 June 751 - 14 September 775 A.D.

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Constantine V was a successful military commander, defeating Bulgarians and Umayyad Muslims. Unfortunately his iconoclast policies diminished Byzantine influence in the West and he lost Ravenna to the Lombards in 751 A.D.
BZ67644. Bronze follis, Anastasi 437; DOC III part 1, 19; Wroth BMC 35, Tolstoi 53, Ratto 1757, SBCV 1569, EF, typical tight flan, uneven strike, nice green patina, weight 2.520 g, maximum diameter 18.5 mm, die axis 180o, Syracuse mint, 757 - 14 Sep 775 A.D.; obverse K - ΛE/O/N, Constantine V and Leo IV, each stand facing wearing crown and chlamys and holding akakia, cross between heads; reverse Λ/E/O/N - ∆/E/C/Π, Leo III standing facing, bearded, wearing crown and chlamys, cross potent in right hand; scarce; SOLD


Byzantine Empire, Constantine V and Leo IV, 6 June 751 - 14 September 775 A.D.

Click for a larger photo
Constantine V was a successful military commander, defeating Bulgarians and Umayyad Muslims. Unfortunately his iconoclast policies diminished Byzantine influence in the West and he lost Ravenna to the Lombards in 751 A.D.
BZ76313. Bronze follis, Anastasi 434; DOC III part 1, 19; Wroth BMC 35, Tolstoi 53, Ratto 1757, SBCV 1569, VF, well centered on a tight flan cutting off most the inscriptions, green patina, scratches, weight 2.272 g, maximum diameter 19.1 mm, Syracuse mint, 757 - 14 Sep 775 A.D.; obverse K - ΛE/O/N, Constantine V and Leo IV, each stand facing wearing crown and chlamys and holding akakia, cross between heads; reverse Λ/E/O/N - ∆/E/C/Π, Leo III standing facing, bearded, wearing crown and chlamys, cross potent in right hand; SOLD


Byzantine Empire, Constantine V and Leo IV, 6 June 751 - 14 September 775 A.D.

Click for a larger photo
Constantine V was a successful military commander, defeating Bulgarians and Umayyad Muslims. Unfortunately his iconoclast policies diminished Byzantine influence in the West and he lost Ravenna to the Lombards in 751 A.D.
BZ67638. Bronze follis, Anastasi 434; DOC III part 1, 19; Wroth BMC 35; Tolstoi 53; Ratto 1757; SBCV 1569; Sommer 23.11, aEF, typical tight flan, nice green patina, weight 2.741 g, maximum diameter 19.3 mm, die axis 180o, Syracuse mint, 757 - 14 Sep 775 A.D.; obverse K - ΛE/O/N, Constantine V and Leo IV, each stand facing wearing crown and chlamys and holding akakia, cross between heads; reverse Λ/E/O/N - ∆/E/C/Π, Leo III standing facing, bearded, wearing crown and chlamys, cross potent in right hand; scarce; SOLD


Byzantine Empire, Constantine V and Leo IV, 6 June 751 - 14 September 775 A.D.

Click for a larger photo
Constantine V was a successful military commander, defeating Bulgarians and Umayyad Muslims. Unfortunately his iconoclast policies diminished Byzantine influence in the West and he lost Ravenna to the Lombards in 751 A.D.
BZ76325. Bronze follis, Anastasi 434; DOC III part 1, 19; Wroth BMC 35, Tolstoi 53, Ratto 1757, SBCV 1569, VF, nice nice green patina, usual crowed flan, weight 2.546 g, maximum diameter 20.2 mm, die axis 180o, Syracuse mint, 757 - 14 Sep 775 A.D.; obverse K - ΛE/O/N, Constantine V and Leo IV, each stand facing wearing crown and chlamys and holding akakia, cross between heads; reverse Λ/E/O/N - ∆/E/C/Π, Leo III standing facing, bearded, wearing crown and chlamys, cross potent in right hand; SOLD


Byzantine Empire, Constantine V and Leo IV, joint reign 6 June 751 - 14 September 775 A.D.

Click for a larger photo
Constantine V was a successful military commander, defeating Bulgarians and Umayyad Muslims. Unfortunately his iconoclast policies diminished Byzantine influence in the West and he lost Ravenna to the Lombards in 751 A.D.
BZ11023. Bronze follis, Anastasi 421; DOC III part 1, 18; Morrisson 23/Sy/AE/01; Wroth BMC 34; Tolstoi 50; SBCV 1568; Sommer 23.10; Ratto -, VF, weight 2.486 g, maximum diameter 17.9 mm, die axis 180o, Sicily, Syracuse mint, 6 Jun 751 - 14 Sep 775 A.D.; obverse K/W/N/S - ∆/E/C/Π, Constantine V standing facing, bearded, wearing crown and chlamys, akakia in right hand; reverse Λ/E/O/N - N/E/O/V, Leo IV standing facing, beardless, wearing crown and chlamys, akakia in right hand; ex Colosseum Coin Exchange; very scarce; SOLD


Byzantine Empire, Constantine V and Leo IV, joint reign 6 June 751 - 14 September 775 A.D.

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This type is extremely rare in better condition than this coin.
BZ02236. Bronze follis, DOC III part 1, 11; Wroth BMC 23; Morrisson BnF 23/Cp/AE/02; Tolstoi 54; Ratto 1754; SBCV 1556; Sommer 23.5, aVF, excellent for the type, weight 2.020 g, maximum diameter 18.3 mm, die axis 180o, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, c. 6 Jun 751 - 769(?) A.D.; obverse facing busts of Constantine V (on left) and Leo IV (on right), both wear crown and chlamys, cross between their heads; reverse facing bust of Leo III with short beard, crown, loros and holding cross potent, cross right, all above horizontal line; below line large M (40 nummi), X - N across fields, A below; very scarce; SOLD


Byzantine Empire, Constantine V and Leo IV, joint reign 6 June 751 - 14 September 775 A.D.

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In 772, the Frankish king Charlemagne began fighting the Saxons and the Frisians. In 774, he conquered the Lombards, and took the title, King of the Lombards.
SH06892. Gold solidus, DOC III part 1, 2d; Morrisson BnF 23/Cp/AV/09; Tolstoi 35; Sommer 23.2.1; SBCV 1551; Wroth BMC -; Ratto -, EF, weight 4.36 g, maximum diameter 20.3 mm, die axis 180o, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, c. 757 - 14 Sep 775 A.D.; obverse CONSTANTINOS S LEON O NEOS, facing busts of Constantine with short beard (on left) and Leo IV beardless (on right), pellet and cross between them; reverse G LEON P A MYL, facing bust of Leo III, with short beard, wearing crown and loros, cross potent in right hand, no officina indicated; from the Scott Collection; SOLD


Byzantine Empire, Leo IV the Khazar and Constantine VI, 24 April 776 - 8 September 780

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Certificate of Authenticity issued by David R. Sear.

The miliaresion was valued at 1/12 solidus.
SH06183. Silver miliaresion, DOC III part 1, 3; Wroth BMC 9 - 10; Tolstoi 10; Ratto 1768 - 1769; Morrisson 1 - 2; SBCV 1585, gVF, weight 2.15 g, maximum diameter 22.3 mm, die axis 0o, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, 776 - 780 A.D.; obverse IhSUS XRITUS nICA, cross potent on three steps, triple border; reverse LEOn / S COnST/AnTInE E / CQEU bA/SILIS * in five lines, triple border; from the Woolslayer Collection, ex Fehlhaber Collection; scarce; SOLD


Byzantine Empire, Constantine V and Leo IV, 6 June 751 - 14 September 775 A.D.

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References identify this type as a half follis, but we believe the Λ in the exergue has a typical Byzantine "clever" dual meaning as both Leo's initial and 30 nummi. There is only one example of this rare type in Dumbarton Oaks. Neither Dumbarton Oaks nor Sear includes the globus cruciger in the right hand in their descriptions, but it is present on the Dumbarton Oaks plate coin.
BZ83043. Bronze 3/4 follis, Anastasi 439; SBCV 1569A; DOC III part 1, 20; Morrisson BnF -; Wroth BMC -; Ratto -, aEF, weight 1.680 g, maximum diameter 15.1 mm, die axis 180o, Sicily, Syracuse mint, obverse facing busts of Constantine V (on left bearded) and Leo IV (on right beardless), wearing crown without cross and chlamys, in ex CIK'Λ; reverse Leo III, bearded, standing facing wearing crown and loros, cross potent in on base in left, globus cruciger in right, Λ (Leo's initial and 30 nummi) in exergue; extremely rare; SOLD




  




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REFERENCES|

Anastasi, M. Monete Bizantine di Sicilia. (NP, 2009).
Berk, H. Eastern Roman Successors of the Sestertius. (Chicago, 1987).
Berk, H. Roman Gold Coins of the Medieval World, 383 - 1453 A.D. (Joliet, IL, 1986).
Calciati, R. Monete Bizantine di Bronzo della Sicilia. (Cairo, 2000).
Füeg, F. Corpus of the Nomismata from Anastasius II to John I in Constantinople, 713 - 976. (Lancaster, PA, 2007).
Grierson, P. Byzantine Coins. (London, 1982).
Grierson, P. Catalogue of the Byzantine Coins in the Dumbarton Oaks Collection and in the Whittemore Collection, Vol. III, Part 1: Leo III to Michael III, 717-867. (Washington D.C., 1973).
Morrisson, C. Catalogue des Monnaies Byzantines de la Bibliothèque Nationale II, 711 - 1204. (Paris, 1970).
Ranieri, E. La monetazione di Ravenna antica dal V all' VIII secolo: impero romano e bizantino, regno ostrogoto e langobardo. (Bologna, 2006).
Ratto, R. Monnaies Byzantines et d'autre Pays contemporaines à l'époque byzantine. (Lugano, 1930).
Sabatier, J. Description générale des monnaies Byzantines. (Paris, 1863).
Sear, D. Byzantine Coins and Their Values. (London, 1987).
Sommer, A. Die Münzen des Byzantinischen Reiches 491-1453. Mit einem Anhang: Die Münzen des Kaiserreichs von Trapezunt. (Regenstauf, 2010).
Spahr, R. Le monete siciliane, dai Bizantini a Carlo I d' Angio (582 - 1282). (Graz, 1976).
Tolstoi, I. Monnaies byzantines. (St. Petersburg, 1913 - 14).
Trivero, A. La monetazione di rame dela Sicilia bizantina (testo e archivio fotografico allegato). (Achao, 2006).
Wroth, W. Catalogue of the Imperial Byzantine Coins in the British Museum. (London, 1908).

Catalog current as of Wednesday, September 18, 2019.
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Byzantine Coins of Leo IV