Description:This 10th century coin features Jesus Christ Pantokrator “Christ in Majesty”, wearing a cruciform nimbus crown, pallium and colobium, while holding a gospel book and raising his hand in benediction. The Latin inscription IҺS XPS RЄX RЄGNANTIЧM translates to "Jesus Christ King of Kings." The reverse side of this gold Byzantine coin depicts the crowned Emperor's Constantine VII and Romanus II holding a long patriarchal cross between them.
The Byzantine Empire was the Eastern Roman Empire during the Middle Ages, centered on the capital of Constantinople, "New Rome." Although Greek was the main language spoken here, the Byzantine citizens still referred to themselves as Romans. Constantine VII "The Purple-born" reigned from 913 to 959, though he shared his throne with his son Romanus II in 945. His nickname alludes to the Purple Room of the Imperial Palace, where legitimate children of reigning emperors were born. Constantine VII was renowned for his abilities as a writer and scholar. He is remembered as an excellent emperor and did much to develop higher education and the administration of justice.
This Jesus Christ coin was minted in near pure gold, over 6 centuries after Constantine I announced Roman toleration of Christianity in the Edict of Milan, which removed penalties for professing Christianity. As this coin shows, Byzantine art was mainly devoted to the Christian faith, which flourished for over a thousand years under their protection.