Baldwin's of St. James's   |   Auction 29   |   19 March 2019 Sort by Lot-NumberSort by Estimate
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Lot 1006

Estimate: 10'000 GBP   |   Starting price: 6'400 GBP Online bidding closed
Ancient Coins, Aelia Zenonis (wife of Basiliscus, AD.475-476), solidus, Constantinople, AEL ZENONIS AVG, bust r.. crowned by Manus Dei, rev. VICTORIA AVGGG followed by officina letter A, Victory stg. l., holding long jewelled cross, star in field, in ex. CONOB, wt. 4.13gms. (RIC X, 1004; DOC.594; MIRB.4b; Depeyot p.258, 93/2), struck on a slightly oval flan, fine to very fine, one of only of a handful of specimens known, and of the highest rarity
Aelia Zenonis was empress for a short period of time during the reign of her husband Basiliscus, who was proclaimed emperor in 475 after a plot to depose Zeno. However, after a short term of just over a year, Basiliscus was evicted from the throne by a resurgent Zeno, who was supported by the senate and the wealth of the imperial treasury, which he had taken from Constantinople on his departure, forcing Basiliscus to raise taxes and fuel his own unpopularity with the people. Zeno, rather than executing the family, had Basiliscus, Zenonis and their son Marcus transported to Cappadocia where they were imprisoned in a dry cistern to die from exposure.

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