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Home > Auctions > 19th March 2010 > Anglo-Saxon - Imitative Tremissis

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LOT 180

Sold for (Inc. bp): £2,300

(1.21 grams.).

C. 6th century AD. Imitative of a tremissis of Justinian. Obv: profile bust right with radiate crown with OOOANVO legend. Rev: cross with forked ends on base with pellet to each side with OOILLVV.VA-IOO- legend. A British copy? Unique? and interesting. Very fine.

Found Cambridgeshire.

Does not seem to be listed in any of the standard references.

Copy based on the cross type of Justinian, but on this coin the emperor's head wears a radiate crown, which never occurs on these coins. It does not appear to be a coin of the Vandals, Lombards or Goths etc. who usually got most of the inscriptions correct. The legends on both sides of this coin are completely garbled comprising principally of the letters O and V. The cross itself is odd - the top is fourché whilst the left-hand arm has two forks, rather as though the engraver did not even know the significance of what exactly he was engraving. It is possible that he was copying the chi-rho headed cross siliquae of Justinian, which had two stars at the base of the cross (rendered here as dots). Possibly copied in Britain? Interesting.