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The William Turner (1792 - 1867) Collection

William Turner (1792 - 1867), a British diplomat of the early 19th century, authored in 1820 his interesting and opinionated Journal of a Tour in the Levant, describing his adventures in the area. Throughout his travels, Turner was always keen to ask for what the Greeks called "medals," "any coin of ancient origin," as well as engraved seals. At Turnerís death in 1867 this collection remained within the family, passing to his son, Mansfield Turner (d.1901), and through the latterís daughter to William Turnerís great grandson, with whom it remained until 1987. It is with great pleasure that we are able to present coins of this fascinating provenance along with brief excerpts from Turnerís Journal. Thus we present the lands of classical civilization as observed through the eyes of a numismatist during the Napoleonic era.


Corinth, Corinthia, Greece, c. 375 - 368 B.C.

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Ex William Turner Collection. William Turner (1792 - 1867), British diplomat of the early 19th century, authored his interesting and opinionated Journal of a Tour in Levante (1820) describing his adventures in the area. This specimen was obtained by Turner in the course of his travels (1812 - 1817).

I:292 "..[At] the site of the ancient town of Hexamillia built across the Isthmus [from Corinth]..We found the cottagers all dancing to wretched music..I asked them if they had any medals and immediately they all flocked around me, each with a few, which I purchased from five, ten and twenty paras a piece. These were mostly of Corinth and Phokis."
WT46626. Bronze AE 18, William Turner Collection 360 (this coin); BMC Corinth p. 57, 472 ff., F, weight 4.941 g, maximum diameter 17.8 mm, die axis 90o, Corinth mint, obverse helmeted head of Athena left; reverse KOPINΘIΩN, ornate trident head; SOLD


Click for a larger photo
Ex William Turner Collection. William Turner (1792 - 1867), British diplomat of the early 19th century, authored his interesting and opinionated Journal of a Tour in Levante (1820) describing his adventures in the area. This specimen was obtained by Turner in the course of his travels (1812 - 1817).
RS30406. Silver denarius, RSC III 161a, BMCRE 831, RIC IV 246, SRCV 7882, gVF, toned, weight 3.204 g, maximum diameter 19.1 mm, die axis 0o, Rome mint, 231 - 235 A.D.; obverse IMP ALEXANDER PIVS AVG, laureate, draped and cuirassed bust right; reverse MARS VLTOR, Mars walking right, spear in right hand, shield in left; SOLD


Click for a larger photo
Ex William Turner Collection. William Turner (1792 - 1867), British diplomat of the early 19th century, authored his interesting and opinionated Journal of a Tour in Levante (1820) describing his adventures in the area. This specimen was obtained by Turner in the course of his travels (1812 - 1817).

III:310-311 "..I did not think the view of Alexandria engaging, as a few trees on the coast compose the whole appearance of vegetation. To the left of the city as we entered, I remarked Pompey's Pillar, and one of Cleopatra's needles..The sands round Alexandria are every where most copiously strewed with broken pottery, probably dug out from the Roman houses, which are seen on all sides, half buried in the sands. The new wall is close to Cleopatra's needles, of which one is lying on the ground, and is that which our officers wished to carry to England.."
WT46669. Billon follis, William Turner Collection 398 (this coin), RIC VII Alexandria 28 (R1), SRCV IV 15226, Cohen VII 74, aVF, bent, weight 2.771 g, maximum diameter 20.8 mm, die axis 330o, Alexandria mint, 321 - 18 Sep 324 A.D.; obverse IMP C VAL LICIN LICINIVS P F AVG, radiate, draped and cuirassed bust right; reverse IOVI CONSERVATORI (to Jupiter the Protector), Jupiter standing left, Victory on globe presenting wreath in right, long eagle topped scepter vertical behind in left, at feet captive right and eagle with wreath in beak left, X / IIΓ right, SMALB in exergue; SOLD












Journal of a tour in the Levant, Volume 1

Journal of a tour in the Levant, Volume 2

Journal of a tour in the Levant, Volume 3

Catalog current as of Sunday, July 24, 2016.
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W. Turner Collection