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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Themes & Provenance ▸ Gods, Non-Olympian ▸ TycheView Options:  |  |  |   


Tyche (Greek for luck; the Roman equivalent was Fortuna) was the guardian deity that governed the fortune and prosperity of a city, its destiny. She is usually depicted veiled and wearing a mural crown (a crown like the walls of the city). The blind mistress of Fortune, Tyche was arbitrary and unreliable, distributing good and evil according to her caprice and without any regard to merit. The Greek historian Polybius believed that when no cause can be discovered for events such as floods, drought or frosts then the cause of these events could be fairly attributed to Tyche.

Athens, Greece, New Style Tetradrachm, c. 100 - 99 B.C.

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The owl is surrounded by magistrates' names and symbols. The amphora is marked with a letter that may indicate the month of production. Letters in the exergue may indicate the source of the silver used in production.
SL35724. Silver tetradrachm, Thompson 861d; cf. Svoronos Athens pl. 61, 1 (same magistrates); SNG Munchen 215 (same); HGC 4 1635; magistrates Dositheos, Charias, and Dion, NGC Choice VF, strike 4/5, surface 2/5, smoothing (2490379-008), weight 15.913 g, maximum diameter 28.2 mm, die axis 0o, Athens mint, 100 - 99 B.C.; obverse helmeted head of Athena Parthenos right, triple-crested helmet decorated with curvilinear ornament on the shell, griffin (or Pegasus?) flying right above the raised earpiece, and protomes of horses above visor; reverse owl stands right on amphora, A−ΘE divided by owl's head, above magistrates names ∆Ω−ΣI/ΘEO−Σ / XAP/IAΣ / ∆IO in five divided lines across field; control symbol in right field: Tyche standing half left, long scepter vertical in right hand, cornucopia in left hand; ∆ on amphora, AΠ below; NGC certified (slabbed); $800.00 (680.00)

Plotina, Augusta 105 - 129 A.D., Amphipolis, Macedonia

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Plotina was the wife of Trajan, married to him before his succession. She was renowned for her virtue and simplicity. In 100, Trajan awarded her with the title of Augusta, but she did not accept the title until 105. Plotina did not appear on the coinage until 112. She was largely responsible for Hadrian's succession to the throne after the death of Trajan. Plotina died in 129 A.D.
SH79967. Bronze AE 24, RPC Online III 645, SNG Evelpidis 1170, Lindgren 980, SNG ANS -, SNG Cop -, BMC Macedonia -, Varbanov -, F, green patina, pitting, weight 9.487 g, maximum diameter 24.1 mm, die axis 180o, Amphipolis mint, 105 - 129 A.D.; obverse CEBACTH ΠΛWTEINA, draped bust right; reverse AMΦIΠOΛTWN, Tyche seated left, patera in right hand; very rare; $500.00 (425.00)

Tarsos, Cilicia, c. 164 - 27 B.C.

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The Tyche / Sandan type was the only autonomous silver issue of Tarsos. Sandan was a Hittite-Babylonian sun, storm, or warrior god, also perhaps associated with agriculture. The Greeks equated Sandan with Herakles (Hercules). At Tarsus an annual festival honored Sandan-Herakles, which climaxed when an image of the god was burned on a funeral pyre.
GS86512. Silver drachm, cf. SNG Levante 925; SNG BnF 1295; BMC Lycaonia p. 178, 94; SNG Cop -; SNGvA -, VF, bold strike, tight flan, iridescent toning, light marks, slight porosity, weight 3.918 g, maximum diameter 16.1 mm, die axis 0o, Tarsos (Tarsus, Mersin, Turkey) mint, 164 - 27 B.C.; obverse turreted head of Tyche right, bead and reel border; reverse Sandan standing right on the back of a mythical horned and winged goat-like animal walking right, he draped and wears a high headdress, bow case and sword on his left side, right hand extended, ax in left hand; two monograms behind (off flan), TAPΣEΩN (downward on right); from the David Cannon Collection, ex Beast Coins; very rare; $400.00 (340.00)

Amisos (as Peiraeos), Pontos, c. 435 - 370 B.C.

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Amisos was settled c. 760 - 750 B.C. by people from Miletus, who established a flourishing trade relationship with the ancient peoples of Anatolia. Amisos came under the rule of the Persian Empire, Alexander the Great's Macedonian Empire, and then the Kingdom of Pontus. The Romans took control in 47 B.C. and Amisos remained within the Byzantine Empire after the fall of Rome. In 1200, the city was captured by the Seljuks. Amisos today is Samsun, a city of about half a million people on the north coast of Turkey.
GS86613. Silver siglos, SNG BM 1059; SNG Stancomb 660; SNG Cop 122; Rec Gen p. 46, 1; McClean 7351; HGC 7 229; SNGvA -; BMC Pontus -, VF, attractive style, light toning, bumps and scratches, obverse off center but not too detracting, weight 5.593 g, maximum diameter 19.0 mm, die axis 45o, Amisos (Samsun, Turkey) mint, c. 435 - 370 B.C.; obverse draped bust of Hera-Tyche right, hair rolled, wearing a turreted stephane ornamented with palmettes and annulets, triple-drop earrings and pearl necklace; reverse owl standing facing on shield, head facing, wings spread open, caduceus upper left, sword in sheath upper right, AΦ-PO (magistrate Aphro...) divided across field below wings, ΠEIPA in exergue; $380.00 (323.00)

Salonina, Augusta 254 - c. September 268 A.D., Roman Provincial Egypt

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Tyche (Greek for luck; the Roman equivalent was Fortuna) was the presiding tutelary deity that governed the fortune and prosperity of a city, its destiny. Increasingly during the Hellenistic period, cities had their own specific iconic version of Tyche, wearing a mural crown (a crown like the walls of the city).
SH66838. Billon tetradrachm, Dattari 5342; Geissen 2982; Kampmann-Ganschow 91.47; SRCV III 10716; BMC Alexandria p. 2266; Milne 4140, Choice aEF, weight 11.345 g, maximum diameter 23.7 mm, die axis 315o, Alexandria mint, 29 Aug 266 - 28 Aug 267 A.D.; obverse KOPNHΛIA CAΛWNEINA CEB, draped bust right, wearing stephane, hair in horizontal ridges and in plait looped below ear; reverse Tyche reclining left on couch, kalathos on head, rudder in right hand, LI∆ (year 14) above; $180.00 (153.00)

Antioch, Seleucis and Pieria, Syria, 5 - 4 B.C., Legate P. Quinctilius Varus

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Publius Quinctilius Varus was a Roman general and politician under Augustus. From 7 or 6 B.C. until 4 B.C. he governed Syria where he was known for harsh rule and high taxes. Josephus mentions the swift action of Varus in 4 B.C., against a revolt in Judaea following the death of Herod the Great. Varus occupied Jerusalem and crucified 2000 rebels. Varus is most infamous for losing three Roman legions in an ambush by Germanic tribes led by Arminius in the Battle of the Teutoburg Forest, at which point he took his own life. Upon hearing the news, Augustus tore his clothes, refused to cut his hair for months and, for years afterward, was heard, upon occasion, to moan, "Quinctilius Varus, give me back my Legions!" (Quintili Vare, legiones redde!).
RP84651. Bronze trichalkon, McAlee 87; Butcher 50c; RPC I 4252; SNG Cop 92; SNG Munchen 640; BMC Galatia p. 159, 59; Cohen DCA 402 (S), F, centered on a tight flan, dark patina with red earthen highlighting, porosity, light corrosion, weight 5.501 g, maximum diameter 20.0 mm, die axis 0o, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, legate P. Quinctilius Varus, 5 - 4 B.C.; obverse laureate head of Zeus right; reverse ANTIOXEΩ EΠI OVAPOV, Tyche of Antioch seated right on rocks, turreted, wearing chiton and peplos, palm frond in her right hand, half-length figure of river-god Orontes swimming right below, his head turned facing, ZK (Actian Era year 27) in the right field; scarce; $170.00 (144.50)

Carteia, Hispania Baetica, c. 44 B.C. - 1st Century A.D.

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The Latin colony of Carteia was founded in 171 B.C. In 27 B.C., when Augustus had become emperor, Hispania Ulterior was divided into Baetica (modern Andalusia) and Lusitania (modern Portugal, Extremadura, and part of Castilla-Len). Cantabria and Basque country were also added to Hispania Citerior.
RP84138. Bronze semis, Villaronga-Benages 2613, Villaronga 71, RPC I 120, SNG Cop 442, SNG Lorichs 1347, SNG Munchen 210, SNG Tub -, F, green patina, rough, corrosion, light scratches, weight 4.234 g, maximum diameter 20.2 mm, die axis 180o, Carteia mint, c. 44 B.C. - 1st century A.D.; obverse CARTEIA, head of Tyche right, wearing crown of turreted city walls; reverse fisherman seated left on rocks, holding rod before him in both hands, fish on the line, wearing a wide-brimmed hat, D - D flanking across field at center; ex RBW Collection; very rare; $160.00 (136.00)

Termessos Major, Pisidia, Late 2nd - 3rd Century A.D.

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Alexander the Great likened Termessos, high in the Taurus Mountains, to an eagle's nest after he surrounded it but failed to conquer it in 333 B.C. An ally of Rome, Termessos was granted independent status by the Roman Senate in 71 B.C. Independence was maintained continuously for a long time, the only exception being an alliance with Amyntas king of Galatia (reigned 36-25 BC). This independence is documented also by the coins of Termessos, which bear the title "Autonomous." Termessos was abandoned after its aqueduct was destroyed by an earthquake (date unknown).
RP84971. Bronze AE 30, SNG BnF 2188 var. (same obv. die, no rev. Θ), SNG Cop 330; SNGvA 5355 var. (no Θ's); BMC Lycia p. 274, 51 var. (same), VF, uneven strike with weak areas, bumps and marks, corrosion, weight 12.799 g, maximum diameter 29.6 mm, die axis 180o, Termessos Major mint, c. 193 - 268 A.D.; obverse TEPMH-CCEΩN, laureate and bearded bust of Zeus right, Θ below; reverse TΩN MEI-ZO-NΩN, Tyche standing slightly left, head left, kalathos on head, rudder in right hand, cornucopia in left, Nike flying left behind her, crowning Tyche with wreath in right hand, palm frond in left hand, Θ low center; rare; $150.00 (127.50)

Claudius, 25 January 41 - 13 October 54 A.D., Gadara, Decapolis

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Gadara (Um Qais, Jordan), located on a mountain summit about 6 miles south-east of the Sea of Galilee, was the capital of the Roman province Peraea. The local era of Gadara (Pompeian) began in 64 B.C. Mark (5:1) and Luke (8:26-39) describe the miracle healing of a demoniac (Matthew [8:28-34] says two demoniacs) in the country of the Gadarenes.
RY86867. Bronze AE 16, RPC I 4819, Spijkerman 19, Rosenberger 25, SNG ANS -, VF, obverse a little off center, scrapes and scratches, weight 4.536 g, maximum diameter 16.4 mm, die axis 0o, Gadara (Um Qais, Jordan) mint, 50 - 51 A.D.; obverse CEBACTWI KAICAPI, laureate head right; reverse ΓA∆APA (upward behind), turreted and veiled bust of Tyche right, L∆IP (year 114) horizontal before her neck; scarce; $150.00 (127.50)

Severus Alexander, 13 March 222 - March 235 A.D., Pella, Macedonia

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Pella was founded in 399 B.C. by King Archelaus (413 - 399 B.C.) as his capital. It was the seat of Philip II and of his son, Alexander the Great. In 168 B.C., it was sacked by the Romans, and its treasury transported to Rome. Later the city was destroyed by an earthquake. By 180 A.D., Lucian could describe it in passing as "now insignificant, with very few inhabitants."
RB79934. Bronze AE 24, Varbanov III 3735 (R4), SNG ANS 633, Moushmov 6479, SNG Cop -, F, superb portrait, attractive green patina, tight flan, weight 11.112 g, maximum diameter 24.2 mm, die axis 0o, Pella mint, 13 Mar 222 - Mar 235 A.D.; obverse IMP C M AVR SEV ALEXANDER AVG, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse COL IVL AVG PELLA, city-goddess seated left, kalathos on head, right hand raised to shoulder; $140.00 (119.00)



Catalog current as of Saturday, March 17, 2018.
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