Byzantine weight, on top engraved with Latin cross between Γ° - Β.
Some silver inlays still visible.
Price € 280,--
Size: 3 x 3,3 cm
Weight: 52,04 gr.
This product is no longer in stock
Weights and measures were strictly controlled by the centralized administration of the byzantine empire.
The system of weights was based on the precursor to the byzantine Litra, the roman pound. the litra was equal to 72 gold solidi (the solidus was the standard gold coin of the empire).
Standard weights helped to ensure consistency and prevent corruption, even though records from the period verify that some tax collectors used heavier weights, and some merchants used lighter ones to increase their profits.
There were three common shapes of weights in use, squares, flattened spheres and discs. these were made of bronze, glass and lead, and rarely in gold and silver. the square weights were predominant, and in use from the 5th to 7th centuries.
Ornamenting commercial weights with the symbol of the Christian cross is an example of an outward religious devotion which was pervasive throughout all aspects of byzantine society, even day to day commerce.