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Home>Catalog>Judean&BiblicalCoins>GreekDomination PAGE 1/212»»»

Greek Domination of Judaea and Palestine

From Alexander the Great's conquest until Roman domination, the city states and small nations of the region, including Judaea, were at various times either ruled or dominated by the great Seleukid or Ptolemaic Kingdoms.Judea 160 to 143 BCE


Macedonian Kingdom, Alexander III The Great, 336 - 323 B.C.
Click for a larger photo Acre, one of the oldest continuously inhabited sites in the world, is at the northern extremity of Haifa Bay in northern Israel. The city occupies an important location on the coast of the Mediterranean, linking to waterways and the commercial activity of the Levant.
SH69932. Silver tetradrachm, Price 3283, Newell Dated 35, Mόller Alexander -, aVF, sculptural high relief, die break at eye, graffiti upper left on reverse, weight 17.019 g, maximum diameter 26.5 mm, die axis 0o, Ake mint, posthumous, c. 315 - 314 B.C.; obverse Herakles' head right, clad in Nemean lion scalp headdress tied at neck; reverse AΛEΞAN∆POY, Zeus enthroned left, right leg drawn back, feet on footstool, eagle in right, long scepter vertical behind in left, Phoenician numeral date (year 32) left below arm; $400.00 (€300.00)

Judaea (Yehudah), Ptolemaic Rule, Ptolemy II Philadelphos, 285 - 246 B.C.
Click for a larger photo Ptolemy II requested copies of Jewish texts for the Library at Alexandria. There they were translated and transcribed by seventy Jewish scholars hired for the purpose, creating the Septuagint, the oldest Greek version of the Hebrew Bible (Old Testament). Many of the oldest Biblical verses among the Dead Sea Scrolls, particularly those in Aramaic, correspond more closely with the Septuagint than with the Hebrew text.
SH54977. Silver quarter-ma'ah-obol, Meshorer TJC 32; Mildenberg Yehud pl. 21, 24; Hendin 1087, gF, weight 0.192 g, maximum diameter 6.4 mm, die axis 180o, Jerusalem? mint, obverse diademed head of Ptolemy I right; reverse eagle standing half left on thunderbolt, wings open, head left, Aramaic YHDH (Yehudah) on left; $240.00 (€180.00)

Judaea (Yehudah), Ptolemaic Rule, Ptolemy II Philadelphos, 285 - 246 B.C.
Click for a larger photo Ptolemy II requested copies of Jewish texts for the Library at Alexandria. There they were translated and transcribed by seventy Jewish scholars hired for the purpose, creating the Septuagint, the oldest Greek version of the Hebrew Bible (Old Testament). Many of the oldest Biblical verses among the Dead Sea Scrolls, particularly those in Aramaic, correspond more closely with the Septuagint than with the Hebrew text.
JD35537. Silver quarter-ma, Meshorer TJC 32; Mildenberg Yehud pl. 21, 24; Hendin 1087, aVF, weight 0.157 g, maximum diameter 6.8 mm, die axis 90o, Jerusalem? mint, obverse diademed head of Ptolemy I right; reverse eagle standing half left on thunderbolt, wings open, head left, Aramaic YHDH (Yehudah) on left; $190.00 (€142.50)

Ptolemaic Kingdom, Ptolemy IV Philopator, 221 - 204 B.C.
Click for a larger photo Ptolemy IV's surname, Philopator, means father lover, ironic since according to some authorities he poisoned his father. Ptolemy IV is a major protagonist of the apocryphal 3 Maccabees, which describes events following the Battle of Raphia, in both Jerusalem and Alexandria. He was a cruel and evil monarch.
SH57267. Bronze AE 40, Svoronos 974 (Ptolemy III), SNG Cop 224 - 226, Weiser 91 - 92, Noeske 155 ff., gF, weight 48.620 g, maximum diameter 38.6 mm, die axis 0o, Alexandria mint, obverse head of Zeus Ammon right, wearing taenia; reverse ΠTOΛEMAIOY BAΣIΛEΩΣ, eagle standing half left on fulmen, wings closed, head right, filleted cornucopia right ascending from behind shoulder, E between legs; huge 48 gram bronze; $180.00 (€135.00)

Ptolemaic Kingdom, Ptolemy III Euergetes, 246 - 222 B.C.
Click for a larger photo Ptolemy III Euergetes promoted the translation of Jewish scriptures into Greek as the Septuagint. Due to a falling out at the Seleucid court, his eldest sister Berenice Phernophorus was murdered along with her infant son. In response he invaded Syria, occupied Antioch and even reached Babylon. This war, the Third Syrian War, is cryptically alluded to in Daniel XI 7-9.
GP59593. Bronze hemidrachm, Svoronos 965, SNG Cop 173, aVF, weight 35.130 g, maximum diameter 34.1 mm, die axis 0o, Alexandria mint, obverse horned head of Zeus Ammon right, wearing taenia; reverse ΠTOΛEMAIOY BAΣIΛEΩΣ, eagle standing left on thunderbolt, wings closed, filleted cornucopia left, chi-rho between eagle's legs; $130.00 (€97.50)

Ptolemaic Kingdom, Ptolemy IV Philopator, 221 - 204 B.C.
Click for a larger photo Ptolemy IV's surname, Philopator, means father lover, ironic since according to some authorities he poisoned his father. Ptolemy IV is a major protagonist of the apocryphal 3 Maccabees, which describes events following the Battle of Raphia, in both Jerusalem and Alexandria. He was a cruel and evil monarch.
GP42269. Bronze AE 38, Svoronos 1148 (Kyrene); SNG Cop 207; Weiser 97 (Ptolemy V, 204 - 202 B.C.); Noeske 151; BMC Ptolemies p. 75, 75 (Ptolemy V), gVF, weight 40.378 g, maximum diameter 38.3 mm, die axis 0o, Alexandria mint, obverse horned head of Zeus Ammon right, wearing taenia; reverse BAΣIΛEΩΣ ΠTOΛEMAIOY, eagle standing left on thunderbolt, wings open, head turned back right, ΣE between eagle's legs; big 40 gram bronze; $105.00 (€78.75)

Seleukid Kingdom, Antiochus XII Dionysos, c. 88 - 84 B.C.
Click for a larger photo Antiochus XII rule was challenged by the Nabataeans, the Judeans and by the Seleucids' perpetual fratricidal wars. Philip I took briefly took Damascus. Antiochus perished in battle at the hands of the Nabataeans, after which Damascus, the long time Southern stronghold of Seleucid power freely gave itself over to the benevolent rule of King Aretas III of Nabataea.
GB58539. Bronze AE 21, Houghton Lorber II 2481, SNG Spaer 2881 - 2883, aVF, weight 6.288 g, maximum diameter 20.9 mm, die axis 0o, Damascus mint, c. 83 - 82 B.C.; obverse diademed and draped bust of Antiochos XII right; reverse BAΣIΛEΩΣ ANTIOXOY ∆IONYΣOY EΠIΦANOYΣ ΦIΛOΠATOPOΣ KAΛΛINIKOY, Zeus standing left Nike in right, scepter in left, monogram in ex; $90.00 (€67.50)

Ptolemaic Kingdom, Ptolemy V Epiphanes, 204 - 180 B.C.
Click for a larger photo The name of Ptolemy V Epiphanes appears on the Rosetta stone. He married Cleopatra I, the daughter of the Seleukid king Antiochos III, and was the father of Ptolemy VI, VII, and Cleopatra II. Ptolemy V lost Judea, Philistia, and Phoenicia to Antiochos III after the battle of Panium in 198 B.C. (Dan 11:13-16).
GP42375. Bronze obol, Svoronos 1494 (Ptolemy VIII), SNG Cop 339 ff. (Ptolemy VIII), Weiser 126, BMC Ptolemies p. 69, 9 - 10 (Paphos?), Noeske -, Hosking -, nice F, weight 11.390 g, maximum diameter 23.7 mm, die axis 0o, Alexandria mint, 200 - 197 B.C.; obverse bearded head of Herakles right wearing lion-scalp headdress; reverse ΠTOΛEMAIOY BAΣIΛEΩΣ, eagle standing left on thunderbolt, wings closed, head left; scarce; $50.00 (€37.50)

Ptolemaic Kingdom, Ptolemy IV Philopator, 221 - 204 B.C.
Click for a larger photo Ptolemy IV's surname, Philopator, means father lover, ironic since according to some authorities he poisoned his father. Ptolemy IV is a major protagonist of the apocryphal 3 Maccabees, which describes events following the Battle of Raphia, in both Jerusalem and Alexandria. He was a cruel and evil monarch.
GP55334. Bronze hemiobol, Svoronos 1153; BMC Ptolemies -; Weiser -; SNG Cop -, aVF, weight 5.561 g, maximum diameter 19.2 mm, Phoenicia, Tyre mint, obverse diademed head of Zeus-Ammon right; reverse ΠTOΛEMAIOY BAΣIΛEΩΣ, eagle standing left on thunderbolt, wings closed, club left, ΣE monogram between legs; scarce; $50.00 (€37.50)

Seleukid Kingdom, Antiochus IV Epiphanes, 175 - 164 B.C., Ake Ptolemais, Galilee
Click for a larger photo Ptolemais was a maritime city of Galilee (Acts 21:7). It was originally Accho, but was renamed Ptolemais under the rule of Ptolemy Soter.

In 168 B.C., Antiochus IV ordered the Jews to worship Greek gods. The Temple in Jerusalem was seized and dedicated to Zeus. The Jews revolted and after three years of fighting, Judah Maccabee defeated the Seleukid army. Hanukkah, the Festival of Lights, commemorates the rededication of the Temple in 165 B.C. According to the Talmud, there was only enough consecrated olive oil to fuel the eternal flame in the Temple for one day. Miraculously, the oil burned for eight days, enough time to prepare and consecrate fresh oil.
GB70118. Bronze serrated AE 14, Houghton-Lorber II 1478(2), cf. SNG Spaer 1041 and 1043, F, corrosion, encrustation, weight 3.010 g, maximum diameter 14.3 mm, die axis 0o, Ake Ptolemais mint, 175 - c. 172 B.C.; obverse laureate head of Apollo right, monogram (control symbol) behind; reverse BAΣIΛEΩΣ ANTIOXOY, Apollo seated left on omphalos, nude, examining arrow in right hand, resting left on grounded bow behind, aphlaston outer left, control symbol (off flan) in exergue; from Butte College Foundation, ex Lindgren; $38.00 (€28.50)



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Catalog current as of Thursday, August 28, 2014.
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Greek Domination of Judaea and Palestine