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a Byzantine snack (a nice Alexius III) & question about late trachea


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I've had a halfway decent one for many years, but I wanted to follow along to the Totalus Rankium podcast featuring Alexius III (1195-1203).

Alexius III decided it was coup o'clock and overthrew his brother, Isaac II.  Though not the most useless emperor, he certainly wasn't the man for the job,as things had gone downhill steadily after Manuel's death.  Alexius III was toppled by the surprise Latin invasion, which was fronted by Alexius IV, a really useless numpty.  The kid richly deserved his fate.  It's written that Alexius III sallied forth with a large force to do battle with the Latins but inexplicably turned back and did nothing, then fled.  Surprisingly, he survived a few years until eventually being monked by Theodore Lascaris, after another coup attempt.

I then set out to find a decent, non-clipped one on vcoins, and ended up with a pretty nice one from Marc Breitsprecher.  I'm probably butchering the name, but my hands are wet and I don't want to handle the coin; there's a tag from Ecounoupolis Numismatics, whom I'm not familar with, but I remember reading that name in a recent thread.  I remember my 1990's one was rather coppery, but this one has a dark patina.


Attribution: Sear Byzantine 2011 Constantinople mint
Date: AD 1195-1203
Obverse: ✠KЄ RO-HΘЄI, nimbate bust of Christ facing, holding book of the Gospels, and raising right hand in benediction
Reverse: IC-XC, Alexius on left, and St. Constantine on right, both standing facing, holding globus cruciger between them
Size: 28.67mm
Weight: 4.31 grams

Edited by Nerosmyfavorite68
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Marc B puts the rarity at a 5/10 in his description,but I'd put it at a 3 or a 4.  Alexius III is one of the easiest to get.  Now, an unclipped, large example is somewhat scarcer.

Not counting uncleaneds, I think this is my first billon aspron trachy since the 1990's.

Feel free to post anything from 1185 to the very early Latin types.

Aside from an unattributed bag of 1990's era cheap trachea, which may or may not be Bulgarian, I don't have any Latin types, that I know of.  I wouldn't mind picking up some nice examples of the larger types.


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My hands were finally dry enough to situate the coin and look at it more closely.  The only thing I don't like about Marc B coins is all the crap that's stuffed into the flip.  It's always a production to situate everything.  The service was very fast, as usual.

The bowl of the reverse has coppery surfaces.  I'm wondering if the late trachea were silvered?  Were contemporary Bulgarian trachea silvered?

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  • Nerosmyfavorite68 changed the title to a Byzantine snack (a nice Alexius III) & question about late trachea
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The coin has a mistake on its attribution. The coin is SBCV-2012 Not 2011.  You will see in SBCV-2011 , The Obverse does not have KERO.

Here is that example.



SBCV-2012 Does have it.  Here is a pretty one , not as nicley struck as yours but the two tone make it easy to see,



Now many dealers would list that as a 2012/2013, the reason is the legend on 2013 is the only main difference. It includes the Comnenus name, normally with the K. The difficultly is most of those coin were not made well so the legends are usually blundered. 

Here is a clean example ( I am traveling so I could not rephotograph. ) It has the legend with the Komnenus name clearly. 



As for silvering,  maybe this coin from an earlier thread appears to be heavy in silver. This is not normal, not does it appear to be silvered but a heavy silver content.  It is wither SBCV-2012/13


In DOc they have at least 10 variations , David Sear broke them into three. Another that was discussed on a earlier post has stars.



And last but not least a very nicely clipped example, ( Clippin is uncertain when it was done, either during Alexius III rule or during Latin Rule. This is SBCV-2012, 







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I collect trachy coins, but I'm not an expert in trachy coins. What I've seen, is that the earlier trachy coins, seem to have the most silvering. The later the trachy coin, the lower the probability that it is silvered, and the less silvering it seems to have. One thing you can do, is go to ACsearch.info, and do the following searches : "Alexius i" trachy, "john ii" trachy, "manuel i" trachy, "andronicus i" trachy, etc.

Edited by sand
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27 minutes ago, sand said:

seem to have the most silvering.

You are correct, the Latin and later restored empire coins have no silver. 

Alexius III i cannot recall one with silver wash intact, as for silver content Doc IV should have a percentage table. I know it goes to 1% when you get to isaac Ii rule and i have seen coins with some silvering remaining from the silver wash. 

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