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Kingdom of Bithynia, Nikomedes I, c. 279 - 255 B.C.
Nicomedes I was the first King of Bithynia to strike coins. He is primarily known for bringing the Gauls known as Galatians to the Asia Minor in 277 B.C. to fight against his brother and Antiochus I. This short-sighted mistake brought troubles for local Greeks for a century. About 264 B.C., according to Eusebius, he moved the capital to Nicomedia on the Propontis. Mørkholm describes the very similar portrait of Nikomedes on his tetradrachms as "the realistic portrait of an aged king with large and rugged facial features."GB96095. Bronze AE 17, Rec Gen I-2 p. 219, 4, & pl. 29, 5; HGC 7 609 (R2); SNG Cop -; SNGvA -; SNG Tub -; BMC Pontus -, F, scratches, corrosion, rough, weight 4.477 g, maximum diameter 16.5 mm, die axis 0o, c. 279 - 255 B.C.; obverse diademed head of the King right; reverse Warrior goddess Artemis-Bendis seated left on rock, two vertical spears in right hand, left hand resting on sword in sheath, circular shield on ground leaning on rock on near side, tree behind on far side of rock, BAΣIΛEΩΣ (King) downward on right, NIKOMH∆OY (Nikomedes) downward on left, EP monogram outer left; only one sale of this type recorded on Coin Archives for the last two decades; extremely rare; $450.00 (€414.00)
Palmyra, Palmyrene, Syria, c. 150 - 225 A.D.
Palmyra, a city in a large oasis in the Syrian Desert, 215 km northeast of Damascus, was the vital silk road caravan stop known as "the Bride of the Desert." Atargatis was the chief goddess of northern Syria, primarily a fertility goddess, but, she was also responsible for the protection and well-being of the people. Her chief sanctuary was at Hierapolis, modern Manbij, northeast of Aleppo, Syria. The Romans called her Dea Syria.GB95894. Bronze AE 12, SNG Munchen 519; BMC Galatia p. 149, 2; Krzyzanowska Monnayage IV; SNG Cop -, gF, dark patina, earthen deposits, weight 1.663 g, maximum diameter 12.0 mm, die axis 0o, Palmyra mint, c. 150 - 225 A.D.; obverse Atargatis bust facing, head left, wearing turreted crown, thin crescent left, star right; reverse radiate bust of young Malakbel (solar deity) left; extremely rare; $300.00 (€276.00)
Roman Republic, Mn. Acilius Glabrio, 49 B.C.
NEW Salus and Valetudo were honored on coins of the Acilia gens because they claimed to have introduced the first Greek physician into Rome. Valetudo, Hygieia to the Greeks, was the original Roman goddess of personal health. Over time, Salus, the goddess of safety and well-being (including welfare and prosperity in addition to health) assumed Valetudo's role. Few recognize Valetudo's name today.
On 10 January 49 B.C., Julius Caesar led his army across the Rubicon, which separated his jurisdiction (Cisalpine Gaul) from that of the Senate (Italy), and thus initiates a civil war. In October 49 B.C., Caesar was appointed Dictator of Rome.RR97490. Silver denarius, Crawford 442/1b, RSC I Acilia 8a, Sydenham 922, BMCRR I Rome 3943, SRCV I 412, VF, uneven tone, light bumps and scratches, weight 3.844 g, maximum diameter 19.4 mm, die axis 225o, Rome mint, 49 B.C.; obverse SALVTIS (downward behind), laureate head of Salus right; reverse MN ACILIVS (straight downward on right, MN and TV in monogram) / III VIR VALETVS (curving upward on left), Valetudo (the old Roman goddess of personal health) standing left, snake in right hand, resting left elbow on column; ex Papillon auction 3 (27 Dec 20), lot 374; $200.00 (€184.00)
Julia Domna, Augusta, 194 - 8 April 217 A.D.
Julia Domna and her children as Terra and the Four Seasons! "The flatterers of Julia Domna pretended that all things were owing to her. The star-besprinkled globe represents the Roman world, which with her husband Septimius Severus she governed; and to the empire of which she destines her two sons, Caracalla and Geta, who, together with as many daughters, are the proof of her fecundity." -- Rasche, T. ii pl l p 932.RS85789. Silver denarius, RIC IV S549 (R), RSC III 35, BMCRE V S21, Hunter III S22, SRCV II 6579, F, well centered, slightly rough with light even corrosion, edge cracks, weight 2.369 g, maximum diameter 20.0 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 207 A.D.; obverse IVLIA AVGVSTA, draped bust right, hair in horizontal ridges, bun at back of head; reverse FECVNDITAS (fertility), Terra reclining left under a vine, nude to the waist, right hand set on globe spangled with stars, leaning on left arm on basket of fruits, in background four children representing the four seasons; rare; $145.00 (€133.40)
Hadrian, 11 August 117 - 10 July 138 A.D.
NEW With this coin Hadrian is claiming to have given stability to the earth. Perhaps it refers to Hadrian's response to desolation caused by earthquakes at the commencement of his reign. Hadrian aided the provinces and cities with funding for repairs and some cities were splendidly rebuilt. Or perhaps it simply refers to political stability, prosperity and peace under his rule.RS94597. Silver denarius, Hunter II 247, RIC II-3 2052(A1), RSC II 1427, BMCRE III 738, SRCV II 3543 var. (slight drapery), F, light toning, flow lines, porosity, die wear, edge cracks, weight 3.049 g, maximum diameter 17.6 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 133 - c. 135 A.D.; obverse HADRIANVS AVG COS III P P, laureate head right; reverse TELLVS STABIL (the earth stabilized), Tellus standing slightly left, head left, wearing tunic to knees, plow handle in right hand, rake vertical in left hand, two stalks of grain in ground on right; from the Ray Nouri Collection; $110.00 (€101.20)
Kaunos, Caria, c. 197 - 191 B.C. (or Later 2nd Century)
On the Rosetta Stone, "The Memphis Decree" announces Ptolemy V's rule and ascension to godhood, and describes him as "like Horus." In "A Statue of a Hellenistic King," Journal of Hellenistic Studies, 33 (1913), C. Edgar attributes a statue very similar to the reverse figure to Ptolemy V: "[The statue] stands with right foot drawn back, the toes alone resting on the ground...His head is held erect and his gaze is turned slightly to his right. His shoulders are drawn up a little...[the upper part] unnaturally short in proportion to the lower part of the trunk...[The missing right] forearm was clear of the body. The [missing] left hand was raised and probably rested on a spear." We believe this type is from the among the last issues of Kaunos under Ptolemaic rule, struck after the 13 year old Ptolemy V came of age in 197/6 B.C., perhaps to commemorate his accession, and before he sold the city to the Rhodians for 200 talents of silver in 191 B.C.GB87087. Bronze AE 16, SNGvA 8103; Lindgren III 425; Imhoof-Blumer KM I, p. 138, 1; BMC Caria -; SNG Cop -; SNG Keckman -; SNG Munchen -, VF, green patina, well centered on a tight flan, a little porous/rough, tiny edge crack, weight 2.166 g, maximum diameter 15.6 mm, die axis 0o, Kaunos (Dalyan, Turkey) mint, c. 197 - 191 B.C. (or later 2nd century); obverse diademed and horned head of Alexander the Great right; reverse youth (Ptolemy V as Horus?) advancing right, nude, long lotus-tipped scepter transverse in left hand, right arm and index finger extended, snake before him coiled around scepter, K-AY (Kaunos) divided high across field, ΣΩ-TAΣ (magistrate) divided across center; very rare; $105.00 (€96.60)
Kingdom of Elymais, Orodes II, Early - Mid 2nd Century A.D.
Elymais was the biblical Elam and home of the magi. With its capitol at Susa, it was a small kingdom in what is now Iran and Kuwait. The Kingdom of Elymais struck coins from the middle of the 2nd century B.C. until their defeat by the Sasanians in 227 A.D.WA93629. Bronze drachm, vant Haaff 13.1.1-1b; BMC Arabia p. 267, 64; Sunrise -, aVF, dark green patina, earthen highlighting, some porosity, edge crack, weight 3.777 g, maximum diameter 15.2 mm, die axis 0o, Early - Mid 2nd Century A.D.; obverse bearded diademed bust facing, bunches of hair at sides and on top; to right, pellet inside crescent above anchor with double crossbar; reverse Aramaic legend: King Orodes, Son of Orodes, horned facing bust of Belos, large tufts of hair on each side of head, hair tied on top of head; from the Errett Bishop Collection; $75.00 (€69.00)