One of perhaps only half a dozen known coins from the city of Svač
Lot 4277
MONTENEGRO, Adriatic Coastal Cities. Svač, circa 1356-1392. Follaro (Bronze, 19 mm, 1.68 g, 12 h), struck under the rule of the Balsic family. S IOHANЄS B St. John standing facing, holding uncertain object in his right hand and double cross tipped scepter in his left. Rev. CIVITAS SOVATI Frontal view of the castle of the city of Svač. Dobrinic Jovanovic 30, 1. Of the highest rarity, one perhaps half a dozen known examples. A highly important coin of great historical interest. Minor areas of weakness and with a few scratches, otherwise, about very fine.

Ex Lanz 155, 10 December 2012, 1090.

Following the death of Emperor Stefan Uroš IV (1331-1346), parts of the empire fell under the control of the noble Balšić family, founded by the eponymous Balša I, provincial lord of Zeta and military commander during the reign of the aforementioned emperor. Under Balšić rule (1356-1421), only four cities were granted the right to mint their own coins: Bar, Drivast, Skadar, and Svač. The coins from Svač are much rarer than those from the other cities.

Svač, known today as Šas in Montenegro, has a long and tumultuous history, with its darkest hour occuring during the Mongol invasion of 1242, when it was destroyed and its inhabitants killed by Kadan, a son of Ögedei and grandson of Genghis Khan. Some 50 years later, the city was rebuilt, among others, by the Serbian Queen, Helen of Anjou. However, the revival of this important coastal city, located on the trade route between Ulcinj and Scodra, was short-lived; by the time the Genoese traveler Francisco Giustiniani visited in 1533, it was already abandoned. Nevertheless, Giustiniani counted the ruins of 360 churches and chapels, attesting to the town’s former glory. Fewer than ten of these churches survive today, as most were destroyed during the Ottoman occupation. Our coin, which is certainly among the finest surviving coins from Svač, serves as a reminder of the city's rich history in the 14th and 15th centuries.
Starting price:
500 CHF
Hammer price:
3600 CHF
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Closing time: 16-Jul-24, 17:39:00 CEST
All winning bids are subject to a 20% buyer's fee.


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