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Demetrios Apokaukos, patrikios and archegetes of the West (eleventh century)

Accession number BZS 1951.31.5.153
Diameter 26 mm
Field diameter 23 mm
Previous Editions

DO Seals 1 no. 1.3.

Obverse

Bust of St. Michael holding scepter surmounted by a trefoil ornament and globus. Inscription on both sides: ΜΙΑ: Μι[χ])α[ήλ]. Border of dots.

Reverse

Inscription of six lines preceded by a cross; the two final letters are between two horizontal bars. Border of dots.

ΣΦΡΑΓ,
ΗΜΗΤΡ,
Π̅Ρ̅Ι⸣SΑΡΧΗ
ΓΕΤ,ΥΣΕ/
ΤΑΠΚΑΥ
Κ

Σφραγ(ὶς) Δημητρ(ίου) π(ατ)ρι(κίου) (καὶ) ἀρχηγέτ(ου) Δύσε(ως) τοῦ Ἀπ(ο)καύκου

Translation

Σφραγὶς Δημητρίου πατρικίου καὶ ἀρχηγέτου Δύσεως τοῦ Ἀποκαύκου.

Seal of Demetrios Apokaukos patrikios and archegetes of the West.

Commentary

The term archegetes, equivalent to ὁπλιτάρχης, means the supreme commander of the infantry (Listes, 335). The owner of the present seal may have been the general commander of all the infantry levied in the Balkans, probably against a specific enemy (perhaps the Petchengs?). The tenth/eleventh century seal of George Maniakes, archegetes of the East (BZS.1958.106.3689), is the first known reference to such an officer. The term "archegetes of the West" is found on two seals published by Mordtmann (Ἐλλ. Φιλολ. Σύλλ. 13, Suppl. [1880] 88; republished in Sig., 326).

The earliest mention of the Apokaukos family is from the late tenth century, when a Basil Apokaukos is known to have been active as a praitor and strategos of the Peloponnesos (The Life of St. Nikon, ed. and trans. D.F. Sullivan, 140-142, 166-168). Corinth XII, no. 64, publishes the seal of a "Kasianos" Apokaukos, protospatharios and strategos of the Peloponnesos.

Accession number BZS 1951.31.5.153
Diameter 26 mm
Field diameter 23 mm
Previous Editions

DO Seals 1 no. 1.3.

Accession number BZS 1951.31.5.153
Diameter 26 mm
Field diameter 23 mm
Previous Editions

DO Seals 1 no. 1.3.

Notes

Accession number BZS 1951.31.5.153
Diameter 26 mm
Field diameter 23 mm
Previous Editions

DO Seals 1 no. 1.3.

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