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John Korones (tenth/eleventh century)

Accession number BZS.1958.106.2293
Diameter 17 mm
Previous Editions

DO Seals 5 no. 99.1; Laurent, Corpus 5.3: no. 1757.


Bust of the Mother of God orans. Sigla: Μ̅Θ̅ : Μ(ήτηρ) Θ(εοῦ). Border of dots.


Inscription of three lines, decorations above and below. Border of dots.


Θ(εοτό)κε β(οή)θ(ει) Ἰω(άννῃ) το(ῦ) Κορόνη


Θεοτόκε βοήθει Ἰωάννῃ τοῦ Κορόνη.

Mother of God, help John Korones.


Laurent understood this seal as attesting a bishop John of Korone, which the editors of DO Seals 2 excluded from the list of seals of Korone (see note under DO Seals 2 no. 28). They believed the seal to refer to a name, τοῦ Κορώνη(ς), based on a reading of the second line on the reverse. While Laurent read tau, omicron, the editors suggested an omicron-upsilon ligature, as the fourth letter of the second line did not appear to be a simple loop. However, the editors of DO Seals 5 admit that uncertainty remained, and it was published in the addenda restoring Laurent's reading.

A re-evaluation of the seal, with the aid of high-quality photography, suggests that the original suggestion of DO Seals 2 is likely the correct one. Traces of the upsilon part of the ligature are visible, and it does not at all appear to be an omicron. It could also be an upsilon, yielding an unusual abbreviation: τ(ο)ῦ. In any case, this entry reflects the reading of "Korone" as a name.