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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Themes & Provenance| ▸ |Numismatics| ▸ |Overstruck||View Options:  |  |  | 

Overstruck Coins

Although most ancient coins were struck on newly made flans, it was not unusual for a coin to be struck with an older coin used at the "blank" flan. Overstrikes are important because we can firmly establish the overtype is a later issue than the undertype. Overstrikes have been used to determine not just the sequence of issues but have also been used to more precisely date issues and, in some cases, to establish the order of rulers' reigns. For some ancient realms, numismatics provides the primary or only clues of who ruled and when they ruled. Sometimes overstrikes were done to recycle worn or obsolete coins. The most interesting overstrikes were done for political reasons. For example during the Jewish Bar Kochba revolt against Rome, the rebels struck their own silver zuz over Roman denarii, thus obliterating symbols of the hated Romans and replacing them with their own.

Byzantine Empire, Heraclius & Heraclius Constantine, 23 January 613 - 11 January 641 A.D.

|Heraclius|, |Byzantine| |Empire,| |Heraclius| |&| |Heraclius| |Constantine,| |23| |January| |613| |-| |11| |January| |641| |A.D.||follis|
Heraclius came to power through revolt against the tyrannical Focas. He defeated the Sassanid Persians, but this only facilitated Arab conquest of Persia and the eastern Byzantine Empire. The Byzantines lost Syria and Palestine before Heraclius died and Egypt fell soon after.
BZ68100. Bronze follis, DOC II part 1, 243; Anastasi 66; Wroth BMC 398; Tolstoi 315; Ratto 1450; Morrisson BnF 10/Sy/AE/35; SBCV 884; Sommer 11.115, F, overstruck, weight 5.875 g, maximum diameter 25.5 mm, die axis 180o, Syracuse mint, 632 - 11 Jan 641 A.D.; obverse facing busts of long-bearded Heraclius and his son Heraclius Constantine, wearing short beard, cross above, all within large round countermark; traces of undertype; reverse Heraclian monogram and SCs within large round countermark; traces of undertype; $32.00 (€29.44)
 


France, Louis XIV the Sun King, 1643 - 1715

|France|, |France,| |Louis| |XIV| |the| |Sun| |King,| |1643| |-| |1715||demi-écu| |aux| |palmes|
This coin is overstruck on an older coin, part of a "reformation" process involving financial manipulations and impacting all French silver and gold coinage from 1690 to 1709. The undertype is a Louis XIV, demi-écu aux huit L, Paris, workshop A, 1690 - 1693, Duplessy 1515; obverse: LVD•XIIII•D•G (sun) FR•ET•NAV•REX, draped and cuirassed bust of Louis XIV right, wearing large wig, obscure date below; reverse: (Mg) CHRS - REGN - VINC - IMP (star), cross formed of four groups of two L's, each arm under a crown cutting the legend, A (Paris mint workshop letter) in a circle at the center, lis in each quarter.
SH84613. Silver demi-écu aux palmes, Duplessy 1521A, Ciani 1895, Gadoury 185, SCWC KM 295.1, VF, extraordinarily strong undertype remnants, reverse of undertype on obverse, obverse of undertype on reverse, weight 13.297 g, maximum diameter 34.5 mm, die axis 180o, Paris mint, 1694 (A, reformation); obverse LVD•XIIII•D•G (sun) FR•ET•NAV•REX (Louis XIV, by the grace of God, King of France and Navarre), cuirassed bust right, wearing large wig, cuirass ornamented with facing head of Medusa on chest; reverse BENEDICTVM (arrow point) 1964 (crescent horns up - indicates reformation) SIT•NOMEN•DOMINI (Blessed be the name of the Lord), crown above three lis in a circle (round arms of France), between two palms tied at the bottom, •A• (Paris mint workshop letter) below; edge inscribed: (lis) (sun) (lis) (flower) DOMINE (flower) (lis) (flower) SALVVM (lis) (flower) FAC (flower) (lis) (flower) REGEM; SOLD


Amastris, Paphlagonia, c. 85 - 65 B.C.

|Paphlagonia|, |Amastris,| |Paphlagonia,| |c.| |85| |-| |65| |B.C.||AE| |25|
Amastris was a Persian princess, a niece of the Persian King Darius III. Her second husband was Dionysius, tyrant of Heraclea Pontica, in Bithynia. She bore him two sons, Clearchus II and Oxyathres. After the death of Dionysius, in 306 B.C., she became guardian of their children and ruler of Heraclea. Amastris married Lysimachus in 302 B.C.; however, Lysimachus soon abandoned her and married Arsinoe II. She founded the city Amastris, on the sea-coast of Paphlagonia, shortly after 300 B.C. by conquering and combining four smaller towns: Sesamus, Cromna, Cytorus and Tium. Tium later regained its autonomy, but the other three remained part of the city of Amastris' territory. She was drowned by her two sons about 284 B.C.
GB63162. Bronze AE 25, SNG Stancomb 737; overstruck on Amisos, AE20 c. 100 - 85 B.C., SNG Stancomb 676 (Ares head / sword in scabbard), aVF, weight 7.820 g, maximum diameter 24.7 mm, die axis 0o, Amastris (Amasra, Turkey) mint, c. 85 - 65 B.C.; obverse aegis with facing head of Medusa (gorgoneion) in center; reverse Nike advancing right, holding palm across shoulders, AMAΣ-TPEΩΣ divided across field, ∆AK monogram lower left; interesting overstrike with easily identified undertype; SOLD







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REFERENCES|

Curtis, C. "Colin Kraay's Explanation of the Phenomenon of Overstruck Reverses on Roman Imperial and Provincial Coins" in the Journal of Ancient Numismatics, Vol. 1, Issue 2, June/July 2008.
de Callata˙, F. "A Coin with the Legend ΘPAKΩN Overstruck on an Athenian Stephanophoros Tetradrachm of AΠEΛΛIKΩN-ΓOPΓIAΣ (88/7 BC) and its Consequences for the Thasian Type Coinage" in Studies Prokopov.
Emmons, B. "The overstruck coinage of Ptolemy I" in ANSMN 6 (1954), pp. 69 - 83.
MacDonald, D. Overstruck Greek Coins: Studies in Greek Chronology and Monetary Theory. (Atlanta, 2008).
Rosenberger, M. The Rosenberger Israel Collection Volume IV: The Coinage of Eastern Palestine, and legionary countermarks, Bar-Kochba overstruck. (Jerusalem, 1978).
Southerland, C. "'Carausius II', 'Censeris', and the Barbarous Fel. Temp. Reparatio Overstrikes" in NC 1945.
Stannard, C. "Overstrikes and imitative coinages in central Italy in the late Republic," in Essays Hirsch. (1998)

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