Another tactic was bribery. The bezant was the dollar of the Middle Ages and it purchased a lot of influence. Money was spread around freely, but bribery was actually very cost-effective. Often a well-placed bag of gold saved Byzantium from raising, supplying and deploying an army. No one was considered above targeting for bribery. In the late eleventh century, a Seljuq Sultan sent an ambassador to Constantinople to settle a border dispute. The Emperor Alexius I Comnenus struck a secret deal with the ambassador, ‘buying’ the fortress of Sinope from him. By the time the Sultan discovered what had happened, Byzantine troops had already occupied the city.