Sandy D. asks: What is meant by the slogan that appears on the Sear 1818 anonymous follis probably issued under Constantine VIII which reads “ihSUS XRISTUS bASILEU BASILE”?
First, excuse the use of Latin letters to approximate the Greek. The legend is a bit of shorthand for two phrases. The first part is missing the word nICA as in “ihSUS XRISTUS nICA” which translates as “May Jesus Christ conquer”. This really is the same sentiment as the inscription “IN GOD WE TRUST” on U.S. coins. The second part of the legend translates as “Basil the King” and refers to Basil II who ruled jointly for a while with Constantine VIII. The coin was probably minted sometime around 1000 AD in the Byzantine Empire.