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Leo I the Thracian became the Byzantine Emperor

07 Feb 2019  Thu

Today on this day in 457 Leo I the Thracian becomes Emperor of the Byzantine Empire.

Leo was born in Thracia to a Thraco Roman family. He began his career in the Roman army, becomes a protégé of General Asper. Leo was the last of a series of emperors placed on the throne by Aspar, who expected to use him as a puppet ruler.

Leo rules the Eastern Empire for nearly 20 years. During the reign, he made many bravely ambitious moves that expanded the Eastern Roman Empire. He is notable for being the first Eastern Emperor to legislate in Greek rather than Latin.

He issued gold and silver coins. Depicted here is a gold solidus which issued during his reign. The obverse of a coin depicts the Bust of King wearing a pearl diademed, helmet and cuirass. Spear in right hand over right shoulder, shield decorated with horseman riding down enemy in left hand. The reverse depicted the Victory standing left with long cross, star in right field.

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