Acquisition: Theodotou Collection of Byzantine Coins

March 29, 2022

Princeton University Library’s (PUL) Numismatic Collection nearly tripled its Byzantine coin collection when it acquired 11,256 Byzantine coins from the estate of Dr. Chris B. Theodotou on March 8, 2022. The acquisition adds to the 5,280 Byzantine coins of the Peter Donald collection, acquired in 2016.  Both collections  were acquired with support from the Friends of Princeton University Library, while the Seeger Center for Hellenic Studies provided half the funding for these two acquisitions. Together with previous holdings, Princeton now has the largest Byzantine coin collection in the world. 

The coins, which are primarily issues of the Byzantine Empire between C.E. 500 and 1453, were collected by Theodotou between 1979 and 1987. According to Curator of Numismatics Alan Stahl, Theodotou was both a friend and collecting rival of Donald.