Byzantine Overstriking Creating Attribution Puzzle

Discussion in 'Ancient Coins' started by A.E. Follis, Jun 3, 2021.

  1. A.E. Follis

    A.E. Follis Member

    I received this coin in a group lot. It is a bit out of my area of specialization and has me stumped. I have posted two photos to show the different orientations of each strike. I found the obverse legend "JJ N [hERACL E hRA]" listed on Wildwinds as Heraclius and Heraclius Constantine, AE Follis, Isaura mint, but the type does not match. The reverse has a mint designation of "_ONЄ" for what? Constantinople? Whatever it's attribution, it is kind of a beautiful coin with a green patina and earthen highlights and a strange mess of clashing devices and letters. Any help is much appreciated.

    Unknown Overstruck-01.jpg Unknown Overstruck-02.jpg
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  3. tibor

    tibor Supporter! Supporter

    Could the "E" after CON be an officinae which would be the fifth?
    just guessing.
    +VGO.DVCKS and A.E. Follis like this.
  4. dltsrq

    dltsrq Grumpy Old Man

    Your coin appears to have been struck over a Constantinople follis of Phocas with "40" expressed as XXXX rather than M (Sear 640). The Phocas may in turn have been struck over an even earlier type as evidenced by the several small letters near the margin on the reverse.
  5. catadc

    catadc Well-Known Member

    SB 805 of Heraclius over SB 640 of Phocas (XXXX + year not visible / CONE mintmark) over something else - there is a PP AU next to the X on reverse.
  6. furryfrog02

    furryfrog02 Well-Known Member

    I have nothing else to add that the others haven't said already.
    Just wanted to chime in that I love overstruck Byzantines and yours is really nice!
  7. catadc

    catadc Well-Known Member

    I, on the other hand, have something to add: an overstrike of Heraclius, year 4, over Phocas, CONE, year 6. The "CONE" and X G" can be seen on the left side of the reverse. The coin is 31 mm and 10.5 gr.

    Overstrikes like this are fun - one can tick 2 boxes while having just one coin.
    0107.png s-l500.jpg
  8. furryfrog02

    furryfrog02 Well-Known Member

    When I get home I will dig out my Herc/Phocas overstrike and add to the group :)
    +VGO.DVCKS and A.E. Follis like this.
  9. Marsyas Mike

    Marsyas Mike Well-Known Member

    Nice coin. I too like those overstrikes.

    This is one of the Phocas types with a lower-case M rather than the XXXX:
    Byx - Heraclius over Phocas Nicopolis fol Oct 2020 (0).jpg
    Heraclius Æ Follis
    Year 4 (613-614 A.D.)
    Nicomedia Mint

    [dd NN hERACLIVS ET hERA CON], Heraclius & Heraclius Constantine standing facing in chalmys / Large M, [ANNO left, cross above], II/II right, Officina A, NIKO.
    SB 834; MIB 175; DOC Type 2.
    (10.10 grams / 27 mm)


    Phocas and Leontia Æ Follis
    n.d. (602-610)
    Antioch (Theopolis) Mint

    DN FOCA NE [PE AV], Phocas and Leontia standing facing / Large m (lower case), ANNO left, cross above, [year (?) right] T[HEUP']
    SB 671; MIB 83a-b.
    Note: Reverse ANNO and cross are from undertype?

    Confusingly, this one seems to have been overstruck twice -
    Byz - Heraclius follis over Phocas Nov 2019 (0).jpg
    Heraclius Æ Follis
    n.d. Year 3-6 (612-616 A.D.)
    Constantinople Mint

    ddNNh[ЄRACLIyS ЄτhЄRACON]SτP[PA]; Heraclius & Heraclius Constantine standing facing, in chalmys / Large M, ANNO left, chi-rho above, [date?] right, Γ below, C[ON] in exergue.
    SB 805; DOC Type 2.
    (11.59 grams / 30 x 27 mm)

    Overstrike (two visible):

    Phocas Æ Follis
    Year 6 (607-608 A.D.)
    Nicomedia Mint

    Consular bust holding mappa and cross / [XXX]X, [A]NNO above, ς right, [N]IKO[?] under SB 659.
    Maurice Tiberius? Æ Follis
    cf. SB 533?
  10. +VGO.DVCKS

    +VGO.DVCKS Well-Known Member

    Just seconding all of what @furryfrog02 said.
    A.E. Follis likes this.
  11. furryfrog02

    furryfrog02 Well-Known Member

    I thought I had a follis of Heraculius overstruck over a Phocas but I was wrong.
    I do however have a follis of Heraclius and Heraclius Constantine overstruck over and earlier follis of Heraclius:

    Heraclius and Heraclius Constantine
    AE Follis struck over Heraclius Year III Follis
    610-641 AD
    Obverse: No legend, Heraclius crowned and in military attire, with moustache and long beard, holding long cross, on left and Heraclius Constantine, crowned and wearing chiamys, with short beard, holding cross on globe on right, both standing facing. Monograms to left.
    Reverse: Large M, ANNO to left, cross above, reginal year to right, officina below, mintmark CON
    Heraclius and Heraclius Constantine, Follis.png
  12. A.E. Follis

    A.E. Follis Member

    Thank you for solving the puzzle of this Byzantine overstrike. I could have never figured it out on my own. And I have enjoyed seeing everyone else's examples. These are some really beautiful messes!
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