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Research Coins: Feature Auction

 
612186
Sale: CNG 61, Lot: 2186. Estimate $500. 
Closing Date: Wednesday, 25 September 2002. 
Sold For $425. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

PAPAL-CAROLINGIAN ROME. POPE ST. LEO III. 795-816. Lead Imitative Denaro (5.42 gm). Struck circa 796-800. SCS PETRVS, bust of St. Peter three-quarter facing / DN / LEONI / PAPE in three lines. Cf. MEC 1033 (Leo III); Berman 13 (Leo III). Also cf. Muntoni I pg. 21, 2-3, Serafini IV pg. 11, 4 and CNI XV pg. 95, 6 (all as Leo VIII); Extremely rare. Fine. ($500)

The presence of this type in the Biebrich hoard dated to about 800, makes the present identification of this issue as Leo III certain.

On Christmas day 800, by taking advantage of the tenuous hold on power by Irene in the eastern empire, Pope Leo raised the Frankish king from the status of patricius of the Romans to universal emperor. In so doing he established the legal precedent that the pope alone could confer the imperial crown.