You are here:Home/Resources/ Byzantine Seals/ Search the Catalogue/ Stephanos (metropolitan) of Sardeis (twelfth century)

Stephanos (metropolitan) of Sardeis (twelfth century)

Accession number BZS.1951.31.5.1976
Diameter 23 mm
Condition Dented on reverse.
Previous Editions

DO Seals 3, no. 32.7.


Bust of the Virgin orans, the medallion of Christ before her. On either side the inscription: μ̅- ̅ : Μ(ήτηρ) [Θ(εοῦ)]. Border of dots.


Inscription of five lines. Border of dots.


Τὸν [Σά]ρδεον [Στέ]φανον, [Ἁ]γνή, με σκέποις


Τὸν Σάρδεον Στέφανον, Ἁγνή, με σκέποις.

O Holy (Virgin), may you watch over me, Stephanos (the metropolitan) of Sardeis.


The inscription is a twelve-syllable verse.

Sardeis (modern Sart), was capital of Lydia and seat of a metropolitan, attested since 325. The non-hellenic name appears on seals as well as in the notitiae in two main forms, the classical Σάρδεις, -εων, and the popular Σάρδη, ἦς, or non-declined Σάρδης (whenever in doubt, we have restored the classical form). From the seals we learn that it was also a fiscal center. See Laurent, Corpus V/1, 260-61 (add Zacos, Seals II, nos. 670, 869); Zgusta, 541-42; C. Foss, Byzantine and Turkish Sardis (Cambridge, Mass., 1976); Brandes, Städte, 86-88; ODB III, 1843.