Coins 418 Lombardic Italy. Aistulf (749-756). AE Follis, Ravenna mint, struck 751-752 AD. D/ [D]N AI[...]. Traces of facing bust, draped and bearded, holding globus cruciger in right hand. R/ Large M, cross above; across field, A/N/N/[O] [I]; below, [R]AV. MEC 324. Ranieri 848. AE. g. 0.71 mm. 13.00 RRR. Of the greatest rarity. Heavy corrosion on obverse. Dark green patina. Fair/About EF. Appointed Duke of the border Duchy of Friuli when his brother Ratchis became king of the Lombards in 744, Aistulf himself became king in 749 when Ratchis was forced to abdicate. During his tenure, Aistulf attempted to expand Lombardic interests in Italy by raiding both the Byzantine exarchate of Ravenna and the territories of the papacy. In 751, the Lombards took Ravenna and began to pressure Rome. In response, Pope Stephen II turned to the de facto Frankish king, Pepin 'le Bref' (the Short) for assistance. In return for a pontifical recognition of his crown, Pepin crossed the Alps, defeated Aistulf, and forced the Lombardic king to relinquish those territories he had extracted from the papacy. Now, much reduced, Aistulf spent the remaining few years of his reign in the pursuit of pleasure. In 756 he was killed in a hunting accident. With his death, the Lombardic kingdom lost even more territory and influence in Italy in the face of an increasing alliance between the papacy and the Carolingians.
(Triton XII, 860).

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