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5615335.

Leontius. 695-698. AV Solidus (20mm, 4.45 g, 6h). Constantinople mint, 1st officina. D LЄO N PЄ AV, crowned bust facing, wearing loros, holding mappa and globus cruciger / VICTORIA AVςЧ, cross potent set upon three steps; A//CONOB. DOC 1a; MIB 1; SB 1330. Lustrous, trace deposits, reverse die crack. EF.


Ex collection of a European ambassador, formed in the 1950’s.

Governor of the Theme of Hellas in Greece, Leontius was proclaimed Emperor after the overthrow of Justinian II in AD 695. His first mistake was not executing his predecessor; instead he cut off Justinian's nose and banished him to Crimea. With the Byzantines in turmoil, the Arabs went on the offensive in North Africa and captured Carthage in AD 698. The fleet Leontius sent to relieve the city instead rebelled and proclaimed its admiral Apsimar as Emperor. Leontius abdicated and was initially spared, but was murdered after Justinian II's return to power in AD 705. The coins of Leontius boast unusually realistic portraiture, portraying him as a portly man with a close-cropped beard.