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Ptolemaic Kingdom, Ptolemy IX Soter II (Lathyros), 2nd Reign, 88 - 80 B.C.
Ptolemy IX Lathyros was king of Egypt three times with intervening periods ruled by his brother, Ptolemy X Alexander. His first reign ended when his mother and co-regent Cleopatra III claimed that he tried to kill her and replaced him with Alexander, her favorite son. Ptolemy IX, replaced the gold sarcophagus of Alexander the Great with a glass one and melted the original to strike gold coinage. The citizens of Alexandria were outraged and he was killed soon after.GP84839. Bronze AE 34, Svoronos 1696 (only 1 specimen), SNG Cop -, SNG Milan -, Weiser -, Hosking -, Noeske -, Malter -, Cox Curium -, F, dark green patina, porous, reverse a little off center, irregular flan with pre-strike casting sprues, weight 16.863 g, maximum diameter 33.7 mm, die axis 0o, Cypriot mint, c. 87 B.C.; obverse diademed and horned head of Zeus-Ammon right; reverse ΠTOΛEMAIOY BAΣIΛEΩΣ, two eagles standing left on thunderbolt, petasos with diadem and straps (control symbol) left; extremely rare; $160.00 SALE PRICE $144.00
The Paphos II finds were excavated at the House of Dionysos in Paphos.GP84889. Bronze hemiobol, Paphos II 383 - 385, otherwise unpublished, gVF, weight 1.996 g, maximum diameter 15.3 mm, die axis 0o, Paphos mint, 88 - 58 B.C.; obverse diademed and horned bust of Zeus Ammon right; reverse ΠTOΛEMAIOY BAΣIΛEΩΣ, single cornucopia bound with fillet; rare; $160.00 SALE PRICE $144.00
Salamis, Cyprus, c. 322 - 310 B.C.
Salamis was a maritime town on the east coast of Cyprus, at the end of a fertile plain between two mountains, near the River Pediaeus.GB85330. Bronze AE 13, Bank of Cyprus 27; Tziambazis 130 (Evagoras II); BMC Cyprus p. 61, 74 (Evagoras II); SNG Cop -, VF, rough, corrosion, weight 2.750 g, maximum diameter 13.2 mm, die axis 0o, Salamis mint, c. 322 - 310 B.C.; obverse helmeted and draped bust of Athena left, wearing crested Attic helmet, earring and necklace; reverse prow left, ΣAΛ upward on left; very rare; $160.00 SALE PRICE $144.00
Neopaphos, Cyprus, c. 31 - 30 B.C.
A very rare variant, probably struck after Actium 30 B.C., where the statue holds a Roman patera instead of the Ptolemaic grain ears. Representations of this statue on Roman coins show the same distinctive pose, with a patera. The statue has been uncovered by archaeologists in Salamis.GP85835. Bronze hemiobol, Bank of Cyprus 69 var.; Paphos II 469 var.; Hosking 68 var.; Cox Curium 128 var.; Michaelidou 35 var.; Svoronos -; Weiser -; SNG Cop -; RPC I -, F, edge crack, weight 1.509 g, maximum diameter 14.6 mm, die axis 0o, Neopaphos mint, c. 31 - 30 B.C.; obverse laureate head of Zeus right; reverse statue of Zeus Salaminios standing left, patera (instead of stalks of grain) in right, long scepter in left hand, star above; ex Moneta Numismatic Services; very rare variety; $150.00 SALE PRICE $135.00
Salamis, Cyprus, Evagoras I, 411 - 374 B.C.
Evagoras claimed descent from Teucer, the son of Telamon and half-brother of Ajax. His family had long ruled Salamis. During his childhood Phoenicians took Salamis and he was exiled to Cilicia. He returned secretly in 410 with 50 followers and retook his throne. Expecting an eventual Persian attack, he cultivated the friendship of the Athenians. For a time, he also maintained friendly relations with Persia and secured the aid of Artaxerxes II for Athens against Sparta. He took part in the battle of Cnidus of 394 B.C. which he provided most of the resources for and in which the Spartan fleet was defeated thanks to his efforts, and for this service his statue was placed by the Athenians side by side with that of Conon in the Ceramicus. Relations with Persia deteriorated and from 391 they were at war. Aided by the Athens and Egypt, Evagoras extended his rule over the greater part of Cyprus, crossed over to Asia Minor, took several cities in Phoenicia (including Tyre), and persuaded the Cilicians to revolt. Under the peace of Antalcidas in 387, Athens abandoned him and recognized Persian lordship over Cyprus. The Persian generals Tiribazus and Orontes at invaded Cyprus in 385 B.C. Evagoras managed to cut off Persian resupplies and the starving troops rebelled. The war then turned in the Persian favor when Evagoras' fleet was destroyed at the Battle of Citium, and he was compelled to flee to Salamis. Here, although closely blockaded, Evagoras managed to hold his ground, and took advantage of a quarrel between the two Persian generals to conclude peace in 376. Evagoras was allowed to remain nominally king of Salamis, but in reality a vassal of Persia, to which he was to pay a yearly tribute. The chronology of the last part of his reign is uncertain. In 374 he was assassinated by a eunuch from motives of private revenge. He was succeeded by his son, Nicocles.GA85955. Silver 1/12 siglos, Bank of Cyprus 9; BMC Cyprus p. 55, 44; cf. SNG Cop 42 (0.80, obol); Tziambazis 119 (0.27g, 1/48 siglos), VF, weight 0.383 g, maximum diameter 8.4 mm, Salamis mint, 411 - 374 B.C.; obverse young male head right, curly short hair, dot circleborder; reverse smooth blank (as struck); rare; $150.00 SALE PRICE $135.00
This type is the smallest denomination issued by the Ptolemaic Kingdom, and among the last coins struck. It has been re-attributed to Cleopatra VII by Matt Kreuzer. Three examples of this tiny coinage were found at the House of Dionysos, the Ptolemaic bronze coin mint discussed in Paphos II. One was found in room LXXXIII, along with sixty-two quarter obols. A second was found in Well 11, along with fifteen more quarter obols. The third was a single find, near a late Roman coin. The Romans last issued this denomination under Nero, when it was marked with an E for five drachmai.GP85369. Bronze 1/8 obol, Svoronos 1246 (Ptolemy V), Paphos II 170, Weiser -, Noeske -, Hosking -, SNG Cop -, SNG Milan -, Cox Curium -, Bank of Cyprus -, Tziambazis -, F, dark green patina, earthen deposits, light scratches, weight 0.946 g, maximum diameter 10.7 mm, Paphos mint, 51 - 30 B.C.; obverse winged fulmen (thunderbolt); reverse ΠTOΛEMAIOY BAΣIΛEΩΣ, eagle standing left, head left, wings closed; rare; $135.00 SALE PRICE $122.00
Ptolemaic Kingdom, Ptolemy VI Philometor, 180 - 145 B.C., ReverseBrockage
A brockage occurs when a blank is struck with a previously struck coin which adhered to the opposite die. Click here to read a detailed explanation.GP85469. Bronze quarter obol, Svoronos 1408, Weiser -, SNG Cop -, Noeske -, Hosking -, SNG Milan -, Malter -, Tziambazis -, VF, reversebrockage, edge cracks, weight 1.793 g, maximum diameter 13.9 mm, Cyprus, uncertain mint, c. 176 - 170 B.C.; obverseincuse of reverse (normal obverse is diademed head of Zeus-Ammon right); reverse BAΣIΛEΩΣ ΠTOΛEMAIOY, eagle standing left on fulmen (thunderbolt), wings closed, lotus in left field; scarce error; $130.00 SALE PRICE $117.00
Ptolemaic Kingdom, Ptolemy X Alexander, c. 116 - 80 B.C., Ancient Counterfeit
This is an unusual ancient counterfeit with a Cypriot style portrait of Zeus Ammon. The central "dimples" on this counterfeit type were actually cut into the dies and struck into the flan. On the official coins the "dimple" resulted from a production process and was not a feature of the dies. This is the third specimen of this counterfeit type known to Forum.GP84120. Bronze AE 21, cf. Svoronos 1698 (official mint), VF, dark green patina, highlighting earthen deposits, pre-strike casting sprue remaining, struck imitations of centration dimples, weight 5.201 g, maximum diameter 20.6 mm, die axis 0o, unofficial Cypriot mint, c. 116 - 80 B.C.; obverse diademed head of Zeus Ammon right, central "dimple"; reverse ΠTOΛEMAIOY BAΣIΛEΩΣ, two eagles standing left on thunderbolts, side by side, heads left, wings closed, cornucopia left, central "dimple"; $115.00 SALE PRICE $104.00
While not noted in Svoronos, this type is fairly common on Cyprus and many have been found in the excavations at Neopaphos. The lack of a central depression indicates they were struck after 96 B.C. Recent Cypriot numismatic publications date them to the time of Cleopatra VII.GP84819. Bronze hemiobol, Bank of Cyprus 69; Paphos II 469 ff.; Hosking 68; Cox Curium 128; Michaelidou 35; Svoronos -; Weiser -; SNG Cop -; RPC I -, VF, dark patina, irregular flan with edge split, light corrosion, weight 2.763 g, maximum diameter 15.8 mm, die axis 0o, Neopaphos mint, c. 51 - 30 B.C.; obverse laureate head of Zeus right; reverse statue of Zeus Salaminios standing left, stalks of grain in right hand, long scepter in left hand, star above; $85.00 SALE PRICE $76.50
Ptolemaic Kingdom, Cleopatra III and Ptolemy IX Soter II (Lathyros), c. 116 - 110 B.C.
The date and reign of issue for this type are uncertain. Svoronos attributed it to Ptolemy IV but noted it may "belong to a later reign." Recent attributions span from Ptolemy VIII to Ptolemy X. Kreuzer suggests it is very similar to Svoronos 1426, from the Alexandria mint, with a cornucopia in place of the silphium plant.GB65953. Bronze AE 20, Svoronos 1158 (Ptolemy IV); SNG Cop 455 (2nd century B.C.); SNG Milan 447 (2nd century B.C.); Weiser -, Noeske -, Hosking -, VF, weight 8.320 g, maximum diameter 20.0 mm, die axis 0o, Kyrene mint, c. 116 - 110 B.C.; obversehead of Zeus Ammon right with ram's horn, wearing taenia and uraeus; reverse ΠTOΛEMAIOY BAΣIΛEΩΣ, two eagles with closed wings standing left on two thunderbolts, silphium plant in left field; rare; $75.00 SALE PRICE $67.50
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