Byzantine. Justinian I, AD 527 to 565. Lead seal impression.

Ancient Coins - Byzantine.  Justinian I, AD 527 to 565. Lead seal impression.
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Period: Byzantine, time of Justinian I, AD 527 to 565
 
Material: Lead.
 
Size: 19.2 mm across the rounded part of the seal, not including the projecting points.  Weight: 7.69 grams.
 
Obverse: Nimbate facing portrait of Justinian, with an inscription naming him (only part of the inscription is visible). The design is similar to that seen on many of his coins, although he is only shown nimbate on some of his gold medallions, and on many of his early coins issue during his joint reign with Justin I.
 
Reverse: Victory standing forward with head right, holding a wreath in each hand. This design is very similar to that on gold tremessis coins issued from about a century and half prior to Justinian, t up his time.
 
There are several unusual features to this seal.
 
1) The cord hole is wide to hold something more ribbon like, than the usual small round holes on most seals of this period.no more than 1 or 2 mm wide.  This suggests this is something other than the usual document seals of this period.
 
2) This is a royal seal with both the image and name of the Emperor.
 
3) The reverse is very similar to gold tremissis coin type that must have circulated fairly commonly at this period.
 
4) In spite of being a Royal seal, this is a relatively common type as early medieval seals go.
 
It is not known what these seals were used for but I speculate they might be coin bag seals for a bag of bronze coins totally  in value a gold tremissis. The theory that earlier bronze coins were circulated in bags, is a fairly widely held, but as yet un-proven.
 
PLEASE NOTE THAT THE WHITE COATINGS ON EARLY LEAD SEALS ARE LEAD OXIDE, WHICH IS VERY TOXIC IF INGESTED. THESE SEALS MUST BE HANDLED WITH CARE, AND ONE SHOULD NEVER LET CHILDREN HANDLE THEM (THIS IS TRUE FOR ANY ANCIENT OR MEDIEVAL LEAD OBJECT).  
Price SKU: vcoin3289
US$ 295.00
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Rates for: 12/12/18

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