This site aims to inform collectors and students of Byzantine base metal coins issued in the period between the monetary reform of Anastasius I (491-518) and that of Alexius I Comnenus (1081-1118).

The collection described was formed between 1982 and 2015 and is ongoing in certain specific areas.

“Early Byzantine Copper Coins” will be published in book form later in 2016. The first printing (of 100) comprises presentation copies only.


About the Book

Byzantine Copper Coins

“Early Byzantine Copper Coins” comprises a number of sections.

The Foreword(s) describe the circumstances of the formation of the collection and the fascination of this series.  There is a lengthy Introduction to the catalogue itself which includes some observations on collecting and studying Byzantine copper, a guide to understanding the catalogue entries, and a short bibliography.

There are 38 chapters which, in a largely conventional way, attribute the coins either by reign (there are two chapters each on the coinage of Justinian I and that of Maurice, and three on that of Heraclius) or by issuing authority. Much of the latter is necessarily speculative, encompassing military issues and emergency and necessity issues from the attempted recovery of parts of Western Europe under Justinian I and his immediate successors, the 20 year conflict with Persia (610-630), and the conquest of large parts of the Eastern Empire by the Arabs.

Two short chapters describe coins in the collection struck by the Germanic Kingdoms and by the Umayyad rulers of Bilad al-Sham and North Africa.

Chapters 39 to 42 inclusive incorporate a number of both published and unpublished papers.


Note on revisions to the EBCC online catalogue (2nd edition; 2019)

Early Byzantine Copper Coins (EBCC) was published in book format in 2016. The structure of the catalogue, while suitable for a traditional publication, does not work as well for a website as it is time-consuming to update the chapters with details of further coins.

To get around this difficulty, the chapters are being recast in a more “austere” version of the modified sylloge. This incorporates: a single font, minimal punctuation; and the descriptive section in a more economic format that will still enable the reasonably experienced numismatist to research a particular coin more fully. (That is, the major catalogue references; the weight, the EBCC number if appropriate; and the unique accession number.) The structure of the chapters has also been simplified – mint followed by date or period of issue being the most obvious and uniform attribute.

New chapters (2019) will be added to the site as they are rewritten with an anticipated completion date of mid-2019. Descriptions of some 500 additional coins will eventually be included.

The chapter structure has also been rationalised. At least two chapters (28 and 29 in the 2016 edition) have been amalgamated. The lengthy chapter 11 on the Eastern coinage of Maurice will be subdivided and this process may also be further applied to the issues of Phocas, of Heraclius, and of the Syrian mint.

The opportunity has been taken to correct errors discovered in the chapters of the 2016 edition.

Select Edition:

Table of Contents
The Fifth and Sixth Centuries
1Anastasius I (491-518)
2Justin I (518-527)
3Justin I and Justinian I joint reign (527)
4Justinian I (527-565) – the eastern mints
5Justinian I (527-565) – Thessalonica and the western mints
6Emergency coinage in Antioch 540-542
7Small lead coins or tokens of the sixth century
8Justin II (565-578)
9The anomalous enthroned coinage of Justin II
9Commentary – The anomalous enthroned coinage of Justin II
10Tiberius II (578-582)
11Maurice Tiberius (582-602) – the eastern mints
12Maurice Tiberius (582-602) – Thessalonica and the western and military mints
13Lead dekanummia of Tiberius II and Maurice
14A small group of Alexandrian dodekanummia
The Seventh Century
15Phocas (602-610)
16The Revolt of Heraclius (608-610)
17Heraclius (610-641) – the mint of Constantinople
18Heraclius (610-641) – Nicomedia, Cyzicus and the minor eastern mints
19Heraclius (610-641) – Thessalonica and the western mints
20The coinage of Syria under Persian occupation (610-630)
21Constans II (641-668)
22The Year 20 mint
23The Pseudo-Byzantine coinage
24The Umayyad Imperial image coinage
25Constantine IV (668-685)
26Justinian II first reign (685-695)
The Eighth Century
27Leontius to Theodosius III (695-717)
28Leo III (717-741) and Artavasdus (742-743)
29Constantine V (741-775)
30Leo IV to Irene (775-802)
The Ninth to Twelfth Century
31Nicephoras I to Michael III (802-867)
32Basil I to Constantine VII (867-959)
33The later and anonymous folles
34The Comneni and the rulers of Trebizond and Cyprus
Related Coinages
35Contemporary forgeries
36Coins of the Germanic tribes
37Early Islamic issues in Syria and North Africa
38Additional coins
Contributions To Study
39Rare and unpublished coins
40Two lines of enquiry
41Numismatic notes
42The Sbeitla hoard and the reconstruction of Byzantine North Africa under Justinian I

Contact the Author

Feedback and questions about the book?