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Research Coins: Electronic Auction

412, Lot: 722. Estimate $300.
Sold for $320. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

Justin II. 565-578. AV Solidus (20mm, 4.51 g, 6h). Constantinople mint, 2nd officina. Struck January 566 or 567-578. Helmeted and cuirassed bust facing, wearing slight beard, holding globe surmounted by crowning Victory and shield / Constantinopolis seated facing, head right, holding spear and globus cruciger; B//CONOB. DOC 1-3 var. (unlisted officina); MIBE 5; SB 344 var. (same). Near EF, some roughness and die flaws.

On a minor issue of solidi, the normally clean shaven Justin is shown with a slight beard. This has been taken to indicate a mourning beard, an ancient Roman custom to show respect for the recently deceased. Not all authorities, however, accept that these were among the first issues of Justin after the death of his uncle Justinian I. MIBE does not distinguish between the bearded and beardless bust type for these solidi, and places them all within the issues of 567-578.