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Nikephoros Ouranos, magistros and "master" of the East (tenth/eleventh century)

Accession number BZS 1951.31.5.1576
Diameter 26 mm
Previous Editions

DO Seals 3, no. 99.11.
McGeer, "Ouranos," 139.

Obverse

The Mother of God holding Christ. Inscription: μρ̅.. : Μήτηρ Θεο. Along the upper border of dots, inscription.

+ΘΚΕ....Τ......

Θεοτόκε βοήθει τῷ σῷ δούλῳ

Reverse

Inscription of six lines followed by an ornament. Border of dots.

.....
ΟΡ,ΜΑΓΙΣ
.Ρ,ΤΚΡΑ
...ΝΤΙΤΗΣ
..ΑΤΟΛΗΣ
.Ο̅Υ̅Ν̅


Νικηφόρ(ῳ) μαγίστρ τῷ κρατοῦντι τῆς Ἀνατολῆς τῷ Οὐρανῷ

Translation

Θεοτόκε βοήθει τῷ σῷ δούλῳ Νικηφόρῳ μαγίστρῳ τῷ κρατοῦντι τῆς Ἀνατολῆς τῷ Οὐρανῷ.

Theotokos, help your servant Nikephoros Ouranos, magistros and "master" of the East.

Commentary

This is undoubtedly Basil II's famous general who, after his crushing victory over the Bulgarians at Spercheios, was given the command of Antioch in the year 999 (Guilland, Recherches, 448; McGeer, "Ouranos," 131). As his mandate was to survey the eastern frontier while Basil subjugated Bulgaria, he was not named doux of Antioch but was invested with much broader powers that are described by the non-technical expression "master of the East," in other words, the emperor's viceroy in the east.

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Accession number BZS 1951.31.5.1576
Diameter 26 mm
Previous Editions

DO Seals 3, no. 99.11.
McGeer, "Ouranos," 139.

Notes

Accession number BZS 1951.31.5.1576
Diameter 26 mm
Previous Editions

DO Seals 3, no. 99.11.
McGeer, "Ouranos," 139.