Late Byzantine Silver(!) Trachy of John III Vatazes (Unpublished?)

Discussion in 'Ancient Coins' started by The Trachy Enjoyer, Mar 24, 2021.

  1. The Trachy Enjoyer

    The Trachy Enjoyer Well-Known Member

    IMG_5747_scrubbed.png IMG_5748_scrubbed.png
    I shared this in a comment earlier but thought it might be worthy of a post on its own! This is an AR Byzantine trachy of (presumably) John III Vatazes! It is unpublished in the standard references and I have been unable to find a match anywhere. The ID of John III is based on style. The robes of John match DOC AR Trachy type 24 exactly and must be the work of the same mint.

    Obverse: Virgin Mary with infant Christ at breast, seated upon a backed throne / MP OV
    Reverse: John III holding anexikakia being crowned by Christ, holding the book of Gospels. IC XC (of what remains legible)

    The coin weighs 0.79 grams and is in a semi fragile state. Thoughts on this coin? Has anyone encountered the type before?
     
    seth77, +VGO.DVCKS, TuckHard and 5 others like this.
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  3. JohnnyC

    JohnnyC Member

    The basic design matches the silver trachy S.2160 of Theodore Comnenus-Ducas at Thessalonica, but the exaggerated style is that of John III at Magnesia, as you say.

    Ross G.
     
  4. Quant.Geek

    Quant.Geek Well-Known Member

    Just to add, there were a few of them, from the same consignor if I recall that went for the hammer at Roma a few auctions ago. They were all labeled as unpublished trachy of John III.
     
  5. The Trachy Enjoyer

    The Trachy Enjoyer Well-Known Member

    Do you have a link to those listings? I don’t see any that match this on Roma’s website or ACsearch. I would like to learn more and hopefully those can shed more light on this (which was sold unidentified in a group lot)
     
    +VGO.DVCKS likes this.
  6. Quant.Geek

    Quant.Geek Well-Known Member

    Search for John III on Roma and you should find some of them, specifically Auction E-Sale 55 and E-Sale 56. There were several types to name a few. All unpublished and from John III, supposedly...


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  7. The Trachy Enjoyer

    The Trachy Enjoyer Well-Known Member

    Interesting. I don’t see a match for mine but perhaps these all came from the same source? It is nice to see more AR pieces enter the market :happy:. A few years ago and it would have been near impossible to get one
     
    +VGO.DVCKS likes this.
  8. Quant.Geek

    Quant.Geek Well-Known Member

    I thought yours was there as well, but apparently not. I suspect its all from the same source...
     
    +VGO.DVCKS likes this.
  9. The Trachy Enjoyer

    The Trachy Enjoyer Well-Known Member

    The group lot it came in was very interesting. 2/3 Miliaresion, POLITIKON tornese, two Anronikos II torneses, one Andronikos II and Michael IX tornese, and this John III AR trachy
     
    +VGO.DVCKS and Quant.Geek like this.
  10. Quant.Geek

    Quant.Geek Well-Known Member

    Damn..Surprised I missed that lot!
     
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  12. JohnnyC

    JohnnyC Member

    The second coin seems to be S.2083 with a minor difference in St Theodore's garb, the third is probably S.2081.

    Ross G.
     
  13. The Trachy Enjoyer

    The Trachy Enjoyer Well-Known Member

    Quite odd. I am not sure what to make of this coin...DOC lists type 24 being minted in 1248. Presuming that this example is indeed of the Magnesia mint (which I am inclined to believe), the date of production would most likely come right before, simultaneously, or right after type 24. This would place the AR trachy as being well after Theodore Comnenus rule as Emperor of Thessalonica.

    Perhaps it was minted as some sort of move for dominance? Theodore's imprisonment by John (1241) and subsequent release as vassal might be a window for this. The trachy could have been a flex of John's power by issuing the coinage of Theodore with himself on there. It could also be a product for the Thessalonican invasion of 1251 by John, trying to take the city and demonstrate John's own worthyness to be Emepror over the Thessalonicans...of course, these theories assume the two issues are related
     
  14. JohnnyC

    JohnnyC Member

    And the first (Romae85-1308) is possibly S.2080 (rather than 2086).

    Ross G.
     
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