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Constantine Phylax (?) (twelfth century)

Accession Number:
BZS.1958.106.2880

Previous Editions

DO Seals 5 no. 27.5b; Laurent, Corpus 2: no. 671.

Details

Diameter:
22 mm

Obverse

Constantine Phylax (?) (twelfth century)

Bust of the Mother of God orans with a medallion of Christ on her breast. At left and right: ̅ΘΥ̅ : Μή(τη)ρ Θ(εο)ῦ. Border of dots.

Reverse

Constantine Phylax (?) (twelfth century)

Inscription of four lines preceded by a cross. Border of dots.


ΛΟΓΣ
ΦΥΛΑΤΤ
ΦΥΛΑΚΟΣ
Κ̅Ν̅

Λόγους φυλάττω Φύλακος Κων(σταντίνου)

Translation

Λόγους φυλάττω Φύλακος Κωνσταντίνου.

I guard the words of Constantine Phylax.

Audio

Commentary

A twelve-syllable metrical seal. It seems unclear whether we are involved with an official who was responsible for a treasury and whose official title was "phylax" or a personal whose family name was Phylax. For seals bearing the title of phylax, see Zacos, Seals II, nos. 474, 756, and 805. The latest datable mention of the treasury is found in a chrysobull of Alexios Komnenos (1086): ἐπὶ τοῦ θείου ἡμῶν ταμείου τοῦ φύλακος (Lavra, 259.51). Our seal seems to be of too late a date to be mentioning the treasury of the Phylax and its supervisor.

W. Seibt, however, in his review of DO Seals 5 (BZ 100 [2007]: 234), suggests that this seal should be redated to the second half of the eleventh/early twelfth centuries, and that this permits "phylax" to be read as an office.

 

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