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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Greek Coins ▸ Geographic - All Periods ▸ North Africa ▸ CarthageView Options:  |  |  |   

Carthage

Carthage, located in North Africa on the Gulf of Tunis, established a hegemony over other Phoenician settlements throughout the Mediterranean, North Africa and what is now Spain. Carthage was in a constant state of struggle with the Roman Republic, which led to a series of conflicts known as the Punic Wars. The Third Punic War ended in the complete destruction of the city of Carthage, the annexation by Rome of all remaining Carthaginian territory, and the death or enslavement of the entire population of Carthage.Carthagian Empire Map


Arpi, Apulia, Italy, 215 - 212 B.C., Struck Under Hannibal

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Arpi remained faithful to Rome until Rome's defeat at the battle of Cannae and then defected to Hannibal. Rome captured Arpi in 213 or 212 B.C. and it never recovered its former importance. No Roman inscriptions have been found there, and remains of antiquity are scanty.
GB72290. Bronze AE 17, HN Italy 650; SNG ANS 646; SNG Cop 613 var (divided ethnic); BMC Italy p. 131, 12 var (same), VF, green patina, weight 3.570 g, maximum diameter 17.1 mm, die axis 225o, Arpi mint, 215 - 212 B.C.; obverse head of Athena right, wearing Corinthian helmet; reverse APΠANOY (upward on left), bunch of grapes; rare; $200.00 (€174.00)


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Head of Tanit / horse head types were likely struck at many different mints in the Punic realm. The style of this particular type, which was struck in Italy during the Second Punic War, is very atypical. Robinson suggested Locri as the possible mint, noting similarity between the style of Tanit on this type and Persephone on Locri bronzes.
GB72269. Bronze AE 19, cf. SNG Cop VIII 373; Robinson NC 1964, p. 53, 5(c) and pl. VII, 5 (Locri), F, green patina, scratches, weight 6.491 g, maximum diameter 19.6 mm, die axis 315o, Bruttium, Lokri Epizephrioi(?) mint, under Hannibal, c. 215 - 205 B.C.; obverse head of Tanit left, wearing wreath of grain; reverse horse head right, no letters or symbols; rare; $180.00 (€156.60)


Arpi, Apulia, Italy, 215 - 212 B.C., Struck Under Hannibal

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Arpi remained faithful to Rome until Rome's defeat at the battle of Cannae and then defected to Hannibal. Rome captured Arpi in 213 or 212 B.C. and it never recovered its former importance. No Roman inscriptions have been found there, and remains of antiquity are scanty.
GB73614. Bronze AE 20, HN Italy 650; SNG ANS 646; SNG Cop 613; BMC Italy p. 131, 12, F, weight 3.792 g, maximum diameter 20.0 mm, die axis 270o, Arpi mint, 215 - 212 B.C.; obverse head of Athena right, wearing Corinthian helmet; reverse APΠANOY, bunch of grapes; rare; $170.00 (€147.90)


Carthage, Zeugitana, North Africa, Late 4th - Early 3rd Century B.C.

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Overstruck on an earlier Siculo-Punic bronze, with head of Tanit / horse with palm behind. The male image lacks signs of a deity and may be one of the leaders of the Punic forces.
GB65846. Bronze AE 17, SNG Cop 121 (also overstruck on type SNG Cop 109 - 119), VF, overstruck, weight 2.576 g, maximum diameter 17.3 mm, die axis 315o, West Sicilian mint, late 4th - early 3rd century B.C.; obverse youthful male head left between two stalks of grain; undertype: head of Tanit left; reverse horse galloping to right; undertype: horse standing right, palm tree behind in background; rare; $160.00 (€139.20)


Siculo-Punic, Late 4th - Early 3rd Century B.C.

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The head on this type is often identified as the female goddess Tanit. It is apparently a male head (Carthaginian men wore earrings). The style of the type varies, perhaps indicating different mints, and some of the heads do look feminine.
GB68302. Bronze AE 16, Viola CNP 126, SNG Cop VIII 96 ff. (=SNG Cop I 1022 ff.), SNG München 1626 ff., SNG Morcom 897, Alexandropoulos 15, Choice gVF, nice green patina, weight 4.058 g, maximum diameter 16.4 mm, die axis 135.0o, Carthage or Sicilian mint, late 4th - early 3rd century B.C.; obverse male head left, wreathed in grain, wearing hoop earring; reverse free horse prancing right, short exergual line below rear hooves, linear border; $150.00 (€130.50)


Carthage, Zeugitana, 221 - 210 B.C.

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The Second Punic War, 218 - 201 B.C., is most remembered for Hannibal's crossing of the Alps, followed by his crushing victories over Rome in the battle of the Trebia, at Trasimene, and again at Cannae. After these defeats, many Roman allies joined Carthage, prolonging the war in Italy for over a decade. Against Hannibal's skill on the battlefield, the Romans deployed the Fabian strategy. More capable in siege-craft, the Romans recaptured all the major cities that had defected. The Romans defeated an attempt to reinforce Hannibal at the battle of the Metaurus and, in Iberia, Publius Cornelius Scipio Africanus Major took New Carthage and ended Carthaginian rule over Iberia in the Battle of Ilipa. The final showdown was the Battle of Zama in Africa where Scipio Africanus defeated Hannibal, resulting in the imposition of harsh peace conditions on Carthage, which ceased to be a major power and became a Roman client-state.Hannibal's route of invasion
GB90106. Bronze AE 21, Viola CNP 106e; Alexandropoulos pl. 4, 90; SNG Cop 309 ff. var (different Punic letter); SGCV II 6518 var (same), gF, weight 6.816 g, maximum diameter 20.9 mm, die axis 0o, Carthage mint, 221 - 210 B.C.; obverse head of Tanit left, wreathed in grain; reverse horse standing right, head turned back, right foreleg raised, Punic letter gimel below; During the period this coin was struck Rome fought two major wars simultaneously: the First Macedonian War against Philip V and the Second Punic War against Hannibal. Rome would later be victorious in both conflicts and emerge as the sole superpower in the Mediterranean.; $125.00 (€108.75)


Siculo-Punic, Late 4th - Early 3rd Century B.C.

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Before it was incoporated within the Persian Empire in the 370s B.C., Tyre was the economic and political hub of the Phoenician world. Supremacy passed to Sidon, and then to Carthage, before Tyre's destruction by Alexander the Great in 332 B.C. Each colony paid tribute to either Tyre or Sidon, but neither had actual control. The Carthaginians, however, appointed their own magistrates to rule the towns and took much direct control. This policy would result in a number of Iberian towns siding with the Romans during the Punic Wars.
GB65641. Bronze AE 16, Viola CNP 126, SNG Cop VIII 96 ff. (=SNG Cop I 1022 ff.), SNG München 1626 ff., SNG Morcom 897, Alexandropoulos 15, aVF, rough, nice green patina, weight 5.015 g, maximum diameter 15.9 mm, die axis 270o, Carthage or Sicilian mint, late 4th - early 3rd century B.C.; obverse male head left, wreathed in grain, wearing hoop earring; reverse free horse prancing right, short exergual line below rear hooves, linear border; $85.00 (€73.95)


Carthage, Zeugitana, 201 - 175 B.C.

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In 195, a Spanish revolt against Roman consolidation of the ex-Carthaginian colonies was put down by Marcus Porcius Cato ("the Censor"). He avoided one defeat by paying the Celtiberians 200 talents (around 120,000 denarii), a much-criticised tactic. On Cato's return to Rome, Aemilius Paulus succeeded him as Roman governor in Spain.
GB73373. Bronze trishekel, SNG Cop 409 ff. (various symbols), aF, porous, flan flaw, weight 17.254 g, maximum diameter 27.9 mm, die axis 0o, Carthage mint, 201 - 175 B.C.; obverse head of Tanit left, wreathed in grain; reverse horse striding right, Punic letter(?) below; large 28mm bronze; $80.00 (€69.60)


Sardinia, Punic Rule, 241 - 238 B.C.

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After the Roman fleet decisively defeated the Carthaginian fleet in 241 B.C., ending the First Punic War, Carthage was forced to agree to abandon all claims on Sicily, to refrain from sailing warships in Italian waters, and to pay an indemnity of 3,200 talents. In 238 B.C., Rome declared war on Carthage demanding control of Sardinia. To avoid war, Carthage abandoned Sardinia.
GB65898. Bronze AE 19, SNG Cop I 1106; SNG Cop VII 252; Lindgren II 645 - 646, F, pitted, crude style, weight 3.748 g, maximum diameter 22.2 mm, die axis 225o, Sardinian mint, c. 264 - 241 B.C.; obverse head of Tanit wreathed in barley left; reverse three barley stalks, pellet in crescent with horns downward above; $70.00 (€60.90)


Carthage, Zeugitana, North Africa, c. 400 - 350 B.C.

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By 400 B.C., Carthage was obsessed with taking Sicily. Over the next sixty years, Carthaginian and Greek forces engaged in a constant series of skirmishes. In 398, Dionysius took the Carthaginian stronghold of Motya. Himilco responded by retaking Motya and capturing Messina. Himilco then laid siege to Syracuse itself. He was close to success in 397, but in 396 a plague ravaged the Carthaginian forces and they collapsed. The fighting swung in favor of Carthage in 387. After winning a naval battle off Catania, Himilco laid siege to Syracuse with 50,000 Carthaginians, but yet another epidemic struck down thousands of them. Dionysius' surprise counterattack destroyed all the Carthaginian ships while most of the men were ashore. At the same time, his ground forces stormed the besiegers' lines. Himilco and his chief officers abandoned their army and fled to Carthage in disgrace. He was very badly received and later committed suicide by starving himself. By 340 B.C., Carthage had been pushed entirely into the southwest corner of the island.
GB66999. Bronze AE 14, SNG Cop I 1022 ff., SNG Cop VIII 95 ff., Alexandropoulos MAA 15, F, rough, nice green patina, weight 3.525 g, maximum diameter 14.1 mm, die axis 315o, Sicilian(?) mint, c. 400 - 350 B.C.; obverse head of Tanit left wearing wreath of grain and pendant necklace; reverse unbridled horse galloping right; $70.00 (€60.90)




  



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REFERENCES

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Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Great Britain, Volume IX, British Museum, Part 2: Spain. (London, 2002).
Villaronga, Leandre. Corpus Nvmmvm Hispaniae Anti Avgvsti Aetatem. (Madrid, 1994).

Catalog current as of Friday, July 31, 2015.
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Carthage