Coin Weight with Busts of Three Emperors and Moneta

Title

Coin Weight with Busts of Three Emperors and Moneta

Subject

Coin, Weight, Byzantine, 5century, Late_Roman, Early_Byzantine

Description

A bronze coin weight with the busts of three emperors, this is an example of the currency produced and used by early Byzantium. It follows their tradition of carving their current emperor's likeness on their coins, but more interestingly it follows the rarer tradition of carving his co-emperors (his most trusted advisors) alongside him, which can give us a sense of their political culture. The figure on the opposing side, though not obviously religious, does not have to be secular, and so we can get a taste of the rise of religiosity through the way they chose to decorate their coins. This level of detail hints at the sophistication of their metal industry, and at the structural integrity of their empire through the strong state mining operation that controlled it. It thus also leads into a discussion of the Byzantine economy and its complexity (how were the coins distributed? What was their purchasing power? What was the income disparity? Etc.).

Creator

Lisa Zacarias

Source

1951.31.4.125

Publisher

[no text]

Date

5th Century

Contributor

[no text]

Rights

HAM

Relation

[no text]

Format

Bronze

Language

[no text]

Type

[no text]

Identifier

Joey

Coverage

Byzantine

Original Format

[no text]

Physical Dimensions

2 x 2 cm

Files

https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/12884814/OmekaImages/LisaCoinWeight.jpg

Citation

Lisa Zacarias, “Coin Weight with Busts of Three Emperors and Moneta,” CB 51 Gallery, accessed July 22, 2018, https://gallerytest.omeka.net/items/show/199.