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FORVM`s Classical Numismatics Discussion Board  |  Numismatic and History Discussions  |  Roman Provincial Coins (Moderators: slokind, jmuona, tjaart)  |  Topic: Commodus/Apollo Tyrimnaios on horseback within temple at Thyatira, Lydia 0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic. « previous next »
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Author Topic: Commodus/Apollo Tyrimnaios on horseback within temple at Thyatira, Lydia  (Read 261 times)
curtislclay
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« on: March 03, 2019, 05:45:51 pm »

The poor coin in the first picture below displays what may be a new reverse type: an equestrian statue of Thyatira's patron god, Apollo Tyrimnaios, within a six-columned temple. I could not find any coin of this type in RPC IV temp., nor in the illustrations or the type catalogue of Price and Trell, Coins and Their Cities (1977). Head, Historia Numorum, p. 658, gives interesting information about Apollo Tyrimnaios and games in his honor at Thyatira, but mentions no coin type showing him on horseback within a temple.

This was not an easy coin to attribute, with most of the legend gone! The dealer offering it was obviously just guessing: Mint uncertain, possibly in Ionia, of Marcus Aurelius, on rev. Alexander the Great on Bucephalus within temple, apparently unpublished.

After quite a bit of searching, I came up with the following attribution:

Commodus, Thyatira, under archon (strategos) Titos Aurelios Barbaros. AE 38, 37.88 g, axis 6 h. Lanz, eBay, 18 Feb. 2019.

Obv: AV K M AV - [PH KOMOΔOC] Bust laureate, draped, cuirassed r. Small round countermark in r. field, probably Howgego 93, displaying small imperial bust (Caracalla?), which is found only on coins of Thyatira, including 24 of Commodus seen by Howgego.

Rev: [ΕΠI CTPA TITO]V - AVP[HΛIOV BAPBAPOV] around, [ΘVA]T[EIPHNΩN] in exergue, probably in two lines. Apollo Tyrimnaios, probably with double ax over shoulder, seated on horse stepping r., within temple of six columns.

The second and third coins shown below, taken from CoinArchives Pro, are comparable coins of Commodus from Thyatira that confirm this attribution.

Second coin, somewhat tooled, has a similar portrait of Commodus with legend beginning AV K M AV on left, and a slightly larger oval countermark on the emperor's neck, a variant of Howgego 93 that Howgego also mentions. On rev. archon Titos Aurelios Barbaros is named, the only magistrate recorded under Commodus at Thyatira whose name can accord with the V - AVP above the temple on the new coin. City name in exergue, with the T in a similar position as on the new coin, where that T is the only clearly readable letter in the exergue.

Third coin: Similar portrait, same beginning of legend A K M AV on left. On rev. same magistrate Titos Aurelios Barbaros, city name also in exergue.
Rev. type Apollo Tyrimnaios with double ax over shoulder, seated on horse stepping right, just as on the new coin but omitting the temple.
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Curtis Clay
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« Reply #1 on: March 03, 2019, 06:47:31 pm »

Some nice detective work, Curtis!
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helvetica
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« Reply #2 on: March 09, 2019, 06:40:54 pm »

I also spotted this one on ebay and had a strong feeling it was from Thyateira. It is too late for it to be in the main body of the new Lydia book but I had already earmarked it for the supplement pages as "my" number 220a and I am hoping that the publisher can still add all the "new types" of Lydian coins that I have come across since I delivered the files.
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