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Research Coins: Printed Auction

CNG 108, Lot: 825. Estimate $200.
Sold for $180. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

BULGARIA, Second Empire. Mico Asen. 1256–1257. Æ Trachy (27mm, 2.64 g, 6h). Veliko Turnovo mint. Facing bust of St. Nikolai, raising hand in benediction and holding Gospels / Half-length facing bust of Mico Asen, holding scepter and cross, being crowned by manus Dei. Raduchev & Zhekov 1.6.2-5 (R7); Youroukova & Penchev 137; D&D 4.1.1. Good VF, attractive green patina. Well struck.

From the Iconodule Collection.

Mico Asen ascended the throne by virtue of his marriage to Maria, a daughter of Ivan Asen II. Little is known about him. Becoming emperor of Bulgaria after the murder of his wife's cousin, Kaliman Asen II in 1256, he had some support in the capital, but was largely opposed by the rest of the nobility. After an unsuccessful campaign against Theodore II Doukas-Laskaris, Emperor of Nikaia, Mico lost control even over the commoners. When Konstantin I Tikh was proclaimed emperor, Mico and his family fled to Michael VIII Palaiologos and sought refuge in Nikaia. Here he was given lands in the Troad, where he remained with his family. The date of his death is unknown, but it is likely that he was no longer alive in 1277/8, when his son Ivan Asen III was put forward as a claimant to the Bulgarian throne by the Byzantine Emperor Michael VIII.