John V Palaeologus, 1341-1391. Stavraton (Silver, 25 mm, 8.07 g, 12 h), Class IIb, Constantinopolis, Phase VI, 1379-1391. Nimbate bust of Christ facing, flanked by IC - XC; in outer margin, eight stars alternating with eight pellets. Rev. IⲰ ΔЄ[...] / ΘV XAPITI KЄ AVTOKPATOR Nimbate facing bust of John V, flanked by two pellets and wearing domed crown and three-lobbed tippet. DOC 1271ff. SB 2510. Nicely toned. Good very fine.
This impressive large silver coin was struck after John V escaped from captivity and regained his throne for the second time from his rebellious son, Andronicus IV Palaeologus. Andronicus appears to have been a particularly rebellious Byzantine prince, who rebelled a first time in 1373 against his father, allying himself with Savci Bey, a son of the Ottoman sultan Murad I. Both princes were defeated, but while Murad had his son killed, John had his son only 'partially blinded' (whether Andronicus lost one eye or whether he regained part of his eyesight a while after the events is unclear). The prince thanked his father for his mercy by stirring up a second revolt in 1376, this time succeeding in capturing the capital through the support of the Genovese. In 1379, however, John V escaped from captivity and regained his throne with the support of the Ottomans, whom he offered an even higher tribute than his son.