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Strabo, in about 17 A.D. wrote: "On the territory of the people of Apollonia in Illyria there is what is called a nymphaeum. It is a rock which emits fire. Below it are springs flowing with hot water and asphalt..." The Nymphaeum was likely a burning natural gas seep.GS83574. Silver drachm, BMC Thessaly p. 59, 41 - 42; SNG Cop 398; Maier p. 15, 120, VF, bumps, scratches, corrosion, small edge split, weight 3.05 g, maximum diameter 17.34 mm, die axis 90o, Apollonia mint, magistrates Aibatios & Chairenos, c. 120 - 70 B.C.; obverse AIBATIOΣ, cow standing left, head turned back right, suckling calf standing right, grain ear left in exergue; reverse AΠOΛ − XAI−PH−NOΣ, the Nymphaeum of Apollonia ablaze, lagobolon below, within double linear square with sides curved inward; very rare; $125.00 (€106.25)
The Perrhaiboi, Thessaly, Greece, c. Late 2nd - Early 1st Century B.C.
The Perrhaiboi were a Pelasgian (indigenous non-Greek) tribal people who lived in Perrhaibia, north of Thessaly proper and bordering Macedonia. Their capital was Phalanna, and their most significant town was Olosson. In the Iliad, Homer wrote of "the valiant Perrhaiboi, who dwelt about wintry Dodona, and held the lands round the lovely river Titaresios, which sends its waters into the Peneus." The Perrhaiboi fought in the Battle of Thermopylae. Through most of their history they were overshadowed and controlled by Thessaly, although they had two votes at the Delphic Amphictyony. Philip II of Macedon took their kingdom and it remained under Macedonian control until the Roman conquest in 196 B.C.GB76999. Bronze trichalkon, BCD Thessaly I 1247 (same dies); BCD Thessaly II 561; Rogers 440, fig. 239; SNG Cop 197, HGC 4 157, aVF, well centered, some corrosion, weight 6.372 g, maximum diameter 19.2 mm, die axis 0o, Olosson or Phalanna mint, c. late 2nd - early 1st century B.C.; obversehead of Zeus right, wearing oak wreath; reverse ΠEPPAI/BΩN (in two lines, starting upward from lower left, ending downward on right), Hera seated right on backless throne, long scepter vertical behind in right hand, resting left hand on knee, no magistrate name or initials; $120.00 (€102.00)
Kierion, Thessaly, Greece, c. 400 - 344 B.C.
Kierion was originally named Arne for the Nymph on the reverse of this coin. Most references, including BCD, identify the male god on the obverse as Zeus. SNG Cop says Poseidon. Since, according to one myth, Arne became pregnant by Poseidon and bore the twins Aiolos and Boiotos, we think Poseidon is more likely.
This coin has potentially active corrosion. We have had the coin for over a year and it has remained stable and unchanged. It must, however, be stored in a humidity controlled environment.GB79733. Bronze chalkous, cf. BCD Thessaly II 107.4; Rogers 173a; SNG Cop 35; BMC Thessaly p. 15, 1; SNG Evelpidis 1516; HGC 4 679 (S), VF, well centered, dark patina, corrosion, weight 2.494 g, maximum diameter 15.2 mm, die axis 315o, Kierion mint, c. 400 - 344 B.C.; obverse bearded head of Zeus right, filletbinding his hair; reverse KIEPIEIΩN, the nymph Arne kneeling right on right knee, looking left, her torso bare, leaning on right hand on the ground, tossing astragaloi with left; scarce; $90.00 (€76.50)
Thessalian League, Greece, Mid - Late 1st Century B.C.
The Thessalian League was a loose confederacy of city-states and tribes in the Thessalian valley in N. Greece. Philip II of Macedon took control of Thessaly in 344 B.C and it remained under Macedonia until the Roman victory in 197 B.C. The league was reestablished in 196 B.C. but had little autonomy after Thessaly became part of the province of Macedonia in 146 B.C.GB71024. Bronze dichalkon (or obol), BCD Thessaly II 907.2, SNG Cop 331, Rogers 59, Burrer p. 62, BMC Thessaly -, VF, weight 7.412 g, maximum diameter 19.8 mm, die axis 0o, Larissa(?) mint, Philokrates, Italos, and Petraios, magistrates; obverse ΦIΛOKPA−TOYΣ (magistrate), head of Athena right, wearing crested helmet and aegis; reverse ΘEΣΣA−ΛΩN, Athena Itonia standing left, Nike standing left offering wreath in her extended right hand, resting left hand on grounded shield behind, spear standing behind, ITA−ΛOY (magistrate) across upper field, ΠETPAIOΣ exergue; $80.00 (€68.00)
Thespiai, Boiotia, Greece, 146 - 27 B.C.
Thespiae stood on level ground commanded by the low range of hills which run eastward from the foot of Mount Helicon to Thebes, near modern Thespies. During the Hellenistic Period, Thespiae sought the friendship of the Roman Republic in the war against Mithridates VI. It is subsequently mentioned by Strabo as a place of some size, and by Pliny as a free city within the Roman Empire, a reward for its support against Mithridates. Thespiae hosted an important group of Roman negotiatores until the refoundation of Corinth in 44 B.C.GB76252. Bronze AE 14, BCD Boiotia 611; Head Boeotia p. 94, pl. VI, 13; BMC Central p. 92, 14, pl. XVI, 12; SNG Cop 406 - 407; HGC 4 1408 (S), VF, weight 3.511 g, maximum diameter 14.3 mm, Thespiai mint, 146 - 27 B.C.; obverse female (Arsinoe III) head right, wearing kalathos and veil; reversechelys, ΘEΣΠI/EΩN in two downward lines, starting on right, ending on left, all in laurel wreath; ex BCD with his tag noting, "Pz. nz. Th., Jan 86, 1000 drs."; scarce; $45.00 (€38.25)
Thespiai, Boiotia, Greece, 146 - 27 B.C.
Thespiae stood on level ground commanded by the low range of hills which run eastward from the foot of Mount Helicon to Thebes, near modern Thespies. During the Hellenistic Period, Thespiae sought the friendship of the Roman Republic in the war against Mithridates VI. It is subsequently mentioned by Strabo as a place of some size, and by Pliny as a free city within the Roman Empire, a reward for its support against Mithridates. Thespiae hosted an important group of Roman negotiatores until the refoundation of Corinth in 44 B.C.GB76253. Bronze AE 16, BCD Boiotia 611; Head Boeotia p. 94, pl. VI, 13; BMC Central p. 92, 14, pl. XVI, 12; SNG Cop 406 - 407; HGC 4 1408 (S), F, green patina, earthen deposits, weight 4.046 g, maximum diameter 15.9 mm, die axis 90o, Thespiai mint, 146 - 27 B.C.; obverse female (Arsinoe III) head right, wearing kalathos and veil; reversechelys, ΘEΣΠI/EΩN in two downward lines, starting on right, ending on left, all in laurel wreath; ex BCD with his tag noting, "Ex Ian Johnson, FPL, Vol. XI, no. 5, Sep 92, no. 4"; scarce; $45.00 (€38.25)
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