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Although unlisted in the major references, a similar hemidrachmtype was first published by 1897. Six obols of this type, including this coin, are listed on Coin Archives having been offered at auction in the last two decades.
The chimera was, according to Greek mythology, a monstrous fire-breathing creature of Lycia, composed of the parts of three animals - a lion, a snake, and a goat or stag. Usually depicted as a lion, with the head of a goat arising from its back, and a tail that ending with a snake's head, the Chimera was one of the offspring of Typhon and Echidna and a sibling of such monsters as Cerberus and the Lernaean Hydra. The term chimera has come to describe any mythical or fictional animal with parts taken from various animals, or to describe anything perceived as wildly imaginative or implausible.GS87477. Silver obol, 6 specimens known from auctions, otherwise unpublished; cf. Boston MFA 2325 (hemidrachm), Greenwell 1897, p. 281, 2 (= Boston MFA 2325), VF, well centered, toned, lightly etched surfaces, bumps and scratches, die wear, weight 0.662 g, maximum diameter 7.8 mm, die axis 270o, uncertain (Lycian?) mint, 5th century B.C.; obversechimera standing (right?) with heads of a lion (in center with looking left), stag, and serpent, joined on one quadruped body at the center and radiating outward; reversegorgoneion (facing head of Medusa), snaky locks, tongue protruding, within incuse square; ex Numismatic Naumann, auction 62 (4 Feb 2018), lot 127; extremely rare; $250.00 (€212.50)
Kings of Bosporos, Polemo I, c. 14 - 9 B.C.
The Bosporan Kingdom (or Kingdom of the Cimmerian Bosporus) was in eastern Crimea and the Taman Peninsula on the shores of the Cimmerian Bosporus, the present-day Strait of Kerch (it was not named after the Bosphorus beside Istanbul). The mixed population adopted Greek language and civilization. The prosperity of the kingdom was based on the export of wheat, fish and slaves. The kingdom's golden age was 2nd and 1st centuries B.C. At the end of the 2nd century A.D., King Sauromates II inflicted a critical defeat on the Scythians and expanded his state to include the entire Crimea. It was the longest surviving Roman client kingdom, lasting until it was overrun by the Huns c. 375 A.D.GB85937. Bronze tetrachalkon, Frolova-Ireland p. 52, pl. 33/1, pl. 34/1-5, MacDonald Bosporus 229, SNG Stancomb 961, Anokhin 256, HGC 7 347 (R2), RPC I -, SNG BM -, SNG Pushkin -, nice VF, bold strike, slightly off center, attractive near black patina with buff earthen highlighting, scratches, edge cracks, countermark, weight 9.295 g, maximum diameter 24.0 mm, die axis 0o, Pantikapaion (Kerch, Crimea) mint, c. 14 - 9 B.C.; obversehead of gorgonMedusa (or Perseus? - most references say a gorgon) right, winged, snakes (or drapery) around neck, obscure round countermark before; reversemonogram of Polemo I; very rare; $180.00 (€153.00)
Macedonian Kingdom, Nikokreon of Salamis, Cyprus, c. 323 - 315 B.C., In the Name of Alexander the Great
Struck by Nikokreon of Salamis in the name of King Alexander the Great. 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. Nikokreon, the king of Salamis, along with the other princes of Cyprus, submitted to Alexander without opposition in 331 B.C. To pay homage, Nikokreon visited Alexander at Tyre where he distinguished himself by furnishing magnificence theatrical exhibitions for the Emperor. In the war between Antigonos and Ptolemy in 315 B.C., Nikokreon supported the latter and was rewarded by being placed in control of all Cyprus. GB87877. Bronze AE 16, Price 3158, Liampi Chronologie 170 - 192, SNG Cop II 1125, HGC 3.1 958B (S), Müller Alexander -, Choice EF, dark green patina, excellent centering, areas of slightest porosity, weight 4.437 g, maximum diameter 16.4 mm, die axis 0o, Cyprus, Salamis mint, c. 323 - 315 B.C.; obverse Macedonian shield, facing head of Medusa (gorgoneion) in center, five double crescents and five groups of five pellets alternating around; reverse crested crested Macedonian officer's helmet facing, flanked by B - A (BASILEWSALEXANDROU, King Alexander), kerykeion (control) lower left; ex Beast Coins, ex Antiqua; scarce; $180.00 (€153.00)
Himera, Sicily, c. 430 - 420 B.C.
In 409 B.C., Carthage attacked Himera. The city was unprepared; its fortifications weak. At first they were supported about 4000 auxiliaries from Syracuse, but their general, Diocles, seized with panic for the safety of Syracuse itself, abandoned Himera. The city was utterly destroyed, its buildings, even its temples, were razed to the ground. More than 3000 prisoners were put to death by General Hannibal Mago as a human sacrifice to the memory of his grandfather General Hamilcar who had been defeated at the Battle of Himera in 480 B.C.GI85845. Bronze hemilitron, cf. Calciati I, Group V, p. 35, 24; SNG ANS 180; McClean 2303; Weber 1356; HGC 2 472 (S), F, green patina, thick truncated-conic slightly irregular flan, struck with a worn obverse die, weight 15.015 g, maximum diameter 24.2 mm, die axis 315o, Himera (Termini, Sicily, Italy) mint, c. 430 - 420 B.C.; obverse facing head of Medusa (gorgoneion), almond eyes, protruding cheeks, nose well modeled, hair in large curls, protruding tongue, crude execution; reverse six pellets (mark of value), in two columns of three, nearly flat field; ex Moneta Numismatic Services; scarce; $170.00 (€144.50)
Selinous, Sicily, 450 - 440 B.C.
Selinus was once one of the most important Greek colonies in Sicily. In 409 B.C., the Carthaginians attacked with a vast army believed to include at least 100,000 men. Selinus, with a population of about 30,000 excluding slaves, was unprepared and an auxiliary force promised by Syracuse, Agrigentum and Gela did not arrive. The Selinuntines defended themselves with courage, and after the walls were breached, continued to fight from house to house. After tens days the city fell. Of the citizens, 16,000 were slain and 5,000 made prisoners, but more than 2,600 escaped to Agrigento.GI83626. Cast bronze cast trias, Calciati I p. 233, 2; SNG Morcom 666; HGC 2 1231 (R1); BMC Sicily -; SNG Cop -; SNG ANS -; SNG München -; SNG Tüb -, aF, green patina, weight 14.308 g, maximum diameter 22.0 mm, die axis 0o, Selinus mint, 450 - 440 B.C.; obverse facing head of Medusa (gorgoneion); with teeth displayed, four pellets (mark of value) in hair, anepigraphic; reverse facing head of Medusa (gorgoneion), with protruding tongue; four pellets (mark of value) in hair, anepigraphic; ex CNG e-auction 285 (22 Aug 2012), lot 14; ex L.C. Aes Grave Collection; rare; $115.00 (€97.75)
Constantine II, 22 May 337 - March or April 340 A.D.
Constantine II was about eight years old when this coin was minted. Here he is draped and cuirassed as a powerful child Caesar with the world in his hands!SH63721. Billoncentenionalis, RIC VII Trier 382 (R3) corr. (no cuirass), SRCV V 17155, Cohen VII 23, gVF, well centered on a tight flan, nice green patina, weight 2.868 g, maximum diameter 18.0 mm, die axis 180o, 2nd officina, Treveri (Trier, Germany) mint, 322 - 323 A.D.; obverse CONSTANTINVS IVN NOB C, laureate, draped, and cuirassedbust left, Victory on globe offering wreath in right hand, mappa in left, head of Medusa on cuirass; reverseBEATA TRANQVILLITAS (blessed tranquility), altar inscribed VO/TIS / XX, surmounted by globe, three stars above, •STR• in exergue; rare; $105.00 (€89.25)
Severus Alexander, 13 March 222 - March 235 A.D., Parium, Mysia
Founded in 709 B.C., the ancient city of Parion was a major coastal city, near Lampsacus, with two harbors used to connect Thrace with Anatolia. Parium belonged to the Delian League. In the Hellenistic period, it came under the domain of Lysimachus, and subsequently the Attalid dynasty. Julius Caesar refounded it as a colonia in the province of Asia. It was the main customs station through which all goods bound for Byzantium from Greece and the Aegean had to pass. When this coin was minted, Parium was within the Conventus of Adramyteum. After Asia was divided in the 4th century, Parium was in the province of Hellespontus. Today it is the village of Kemer in the township of Biga, Canakkale province, Turkey.RP85228. Bronze AE 22, RPC Online VI temp 3875 (3 spec., all same dies), SNG Çanakkale 226 var. (same obv. die, normal rev.), SNG Cop -, SNGvA -, SNG BnF -, BMC Mysia -, VF, obverse slightly off center, light bumps and marks, slightest corrosion, weight 4.627 g, maximum diameter 22.4 mm, die axis 225o, Parium (Kemer, Canakkale, Turkey) mint, 13 Mar 222 - Mar 235 A.D.; obverse IMP CAEƧ L ƧEP ƧEV ALEXANDER, laureate and cuirassedbust right, seen from the front, cuirass with Gorgoneion; reverse Capricorn swimming left, holding celestial globe between legs, cornucopia on back, C G I H P (Colonia Gemella Iulia Hadriana Pariana) retrograde below (the entire reverse is retrograde - the normal type is Capricorn right); rare; $80.00 (€68.00)
Selge, Pisidia, c. 350 - 300 B.C.
Selge, Pisidia on the southern slope of Mount Taurus where the river Eurymedon (Köprücay) forces its way through the mountains, was once the most powerful and populous city of Pisidia. Protected by precipices, torrents, and an army of 20,000 regarded as worthy kinsmen of the Spartans, Selge was never subject to a foreign power until Rome. In the 5th century A.D., Zosimus calls it a little town, but it was still strong enough to repel a body of Goths. The remains of the city consist mainly of parts of the encircling wall and of the acropolis. A few traces have survived of the gymnasium, the stoa, the stadium and the basilica. There are also the outlines of two temples, but the best-conserved monument is the theater, restored in the 3rd century AD.GS83942. Silver trihemiobol, SNG BnF 1933; SNGvA 5278; SNG Cop 246; BMC Lycia p. 259, 23 ff.; Klein 630; SGCV II 5478, VF, well centered, porous, weight 0.903 g, maximum diameter 10.1 mm, die axis 45o, Selge (southern slope of Mount Taurus, Turkey) mint, c. 300 - 300 B.C.; obverse facing head of Medusa (gorgoneion) with curly short hair; reversehead of Athena right in crested helmet, astragalos behind; ex Wilson H. Guertin; $80.00 (€68.00)
Selge, Pisidia, c. 350 - 300 B.C.
Selge, Pisidia on the southern slope of Mount Taurus where the river Eurymedon (Köprücay) forces its way through the mountains, was once the most powerful and populous city of Pisidia. Protected by precipices, torrents, and an army of 20,000 regarded as worthy kinsmen of the Spartans, Selge was never subject to a foreign power until Rome. In the 5th century A.D., Zosimus calls it a little town, but it was still strong enough to repel a body of Goths. The remains of the city consist mainly of parts of the encircling wall and of the acropolis. A few traces have survived of the gymnasium, the stoa, the stadium and the basilica. There are also the outlines of two temples, but the best-conserved monument is the theater, restored in the 3rd century AD.GS83946. Silver obol, SNG BnF 1933; SNGvA 5278; SNG Cop 246; BMC Lycia p. 259, 23 ff.; Klein 630; SGCV II 5478, VF, uneven dark toning, ragged edge with small splits and cracks, weight 0.537 g, maximum diameter 10.2 mm, die axis 0o, Selge (southern slope of Mount Taurus, Turkey) mint, c. 300 - 250 B.C.; obverse facing head of Medusa (gorgoneion) with curly short hair; reversehead of Athena right in crested helmet, astragalos behind; ex Wilson H. Guertin; $55.00 (€46.75)
Thracians, Odrysian Kingdom, Early 5th - Middle 4th Century B.C.
A Gorgoneion was a horror-creating apotropaicGorgonhead pendant. The name derives from the Greek word gorgós, which means "dreadful." The Gorgons were three sisters who had hair of living, venomous snakes, and a horrifying face that turned those who saw it to stone. Stheno and Euryale were immortal, but their sister Medusa was not, and was slain by Perseus. Zeus, Athena, Hellenistic kings and Roman emperors wore Gorgoneion for protection. Images of the Gorgons were also put upon objects and buildings for protection. A Gorgon image is at the center of the pediment of the temple at Corfu, the oldest stone pediment in Greece from about 600 B.C.GA47658. Silver hemidrachm, Topalov Thrace p. 230, 55, aF, crude, worn dies, weight 2.761 g, maximum diameter 13.5 mm, Thracian, Greek city or tribal mint, early 5th - middle 4th century B.C.; obverse facing head of Medusa (gorgoneion); reverseincuse square containing angles in each corner forming a cruciform pattern, with pellet in center; ex Alex G. Malloy; $45.00 (€38.25)