Classical Numismatics Discussion Members' Gallery
  Welcome Guest. Please login or register. Share your collection with the world! A FREE service provided by Forum Ancient Coins No limit to the number of coins you can add - more is better! Welcome Guest. Please login or register. Share your collection with the world! Please add a coin from our shop to your collection today! Support the services you use at Forum by shopping at Forum.

Members' Gallery Home | Last Added | Last Comments | Most Viewed | Top Rated | My Favorities | Search Galleries
Home > Member Collections > Schatz

Early Parthians I


Silver tetradrachms, drachms, bronzes, and fractions from Arsakes I to Bagasis, with the attributions of David Sellwood, the Coinage of Parthia, Farhad Assar, and Fred Shore, Parthian Coins and History. Attributions of Parthian coins are in flux now. For convenience's sake I will stick with the Sellwood system for my gallery.

54 files, last one added on Dec 26, 2016

Early Parthians II


Silver and bronze tetradrachms, drachms and chalkoi from Artabanos I. to the end of the reign of Mithradates II. I follow the David Sellwood attributions from 1980 regarding the sequence of the rulers. Fred Shore and Farhad Assar are also consulted for attributions. Deviations from Sellwood are noted in the description of the coins.

78 files, last one added on Jan 15, 2017

Parthian Dark Age I


The period of about 90 BC (the end of the reign of Mithradates II.) and circa 57 BC (the established rule of Orodes II.) is referred to as the 'Dark Age' because of the number of rulers, co-rulers, an sub-kings and shifts of territory. Attributions are uncertain, new theories and sources are currently published. Again, for reasons of convenience, the Sellwood system ist used as a guide line, but other interpretations are mentioned in the descriptions of the coins.

54 files, last one added on Sep 13, 2016

Parthian Dark Age II


Drachms and bronzes of Dareios of Media Atropatene, Phraates III., and one of his sons and killers, Mithradates III. to the time of the latter's death at the hands of his brother, Orodes II. in ca. 54 BC. An S. 44.1 tetradrachm which belongs most likely to the coinage of Mithradates III. is shown under the heading of Orodes II. in the following album to remain consistent with David Sellwood's attributions.

41 files, last one added on Jan 15, 2017

Middle Parthian Period I


I begin with Orodes II., victorious over the Romans at Carrhae, Phraates IV., the usurper Tiridates, and Phraatakes, the latter famous for having married his mother. Patricide, fratricide, and filicide are rampant. The coin quality begins to deteriorate, metallurgically and artistically, and correct Greek legends become the exception. Only few drachms reach the Attic weight standard any longer. Phraatakes' drachms from eastern mints have cartoon-like obverses and reverses that no longer have identifiable letters.
Little did I realize how many Orodes coins had accumulated over the years, so I will break up the period into as many albums as I need. Middle Parthian Period II picks up with Phraates IV.

73 files, last one added on Sep 08, 2016

Middle Parthian Period II


Middle Parthian Period II opens with Phraates IV, and continues with Tiridates, Phraatakes, and Phraatakes and Musa. Coin quality is in rapid decline, most of the Eastern mints appear to have no skilled celators. Artistically, the tetradrachms still stand out as do a few drachm issues mainly from Ekbatana and Rhagai.

70 files, last one added on Sep 11, 2016

Middle Parthian Period III


This section begins with Orodes III (6-8 AD) and shows the ever deteriorating coinage of the following rulers until Pakoros II (78 - 105 AD). On the drachms, the portraits consist more and more of straight lines and dots. The tetradrachms are really made of billon metal, no longer of high grade silver. The Eastern mints put out greater quantities of drachms, albeit usually of low quality metal and design. Copper drachms appear, always from Eastern mints. New attributions are mentioned, but the old Sellwood system is maintained for the time being.

79 files, last one added on Jan 15, 2017

Late Parthians I


Find tetradrachms, drachms and some fractions in these two sections that begin with Pakoros II. and end with the last Parthian kings Artabanos IV. and Vologases VI. and a presumed prince named Tiridates. Most of these coins no longer bear any resemblance to the fine design and workmanship of the Early Period that was dominated by Greek artisans. Their quality is a reflection of the problems of the empire and its rulers, the shaky alliances and costly conflicts with Rome, ongoing internecine struggles, and sales and losses of territory. One notes flickers of quality in the drachms and bronzes of Osroes I., Vologases V., Artabanos IV., and Vologases VI. before the Parthian Empire collapses around 228 AD and is taken over by an indigenous Iranian power, the Sassanians under Ardashir I.

55 files, last one added on Sep 29, 2016

Late Parthians II


The drachms of Mithradates IV. lead the second part of this last section of my Parthian coins. They still show some quality of metal and design, but the steep downward curve continues with most of the tetradrachms of Vologases IV., and all of those of Vologases V. and VI. In some of the late drachms, again, we can still find artistic skill, especially with Vologases V., VI., Artabanos IV., and the mysterious Prince Tiridates.

72 files, last one added on Jan 15, 2017

Eastern Parthians


As far as I know, three Parthian kings had bronze drachms minted in Areia and Margiane when they held or were confined to the eastern provinces of the Parthian Empire. Some other rulers minted the odd bronze drachm, but their number is negligible. The bulk of these coins were issued by Artabanos II., 10 - 38 AD, Vardanes I., 40 - 45 AD, and Vologases III., 105 - 147 AD. These drachms are of lesser artistic value; nevertheless, they are of some numismatic and historical interest. One can speculate why these rulers issued AE drachms: Was silver so rare in the East, were they in such dire streets that they could not afford silver, or were the lesser drachms meant to be an interim solution. The die cutters were certainly not first rate, and all of their products seem to have been made in haste.
The Sanabares on my AE drachms is most likely a Parthian prince or sub king who ruled in one of the Eastern provinces of the empire in what is now Turkmenistan (Margiane = Merv) around 125 AD. He is probably not identical with an Indo-Parthian ruler of the same name who struck coins in Seistan ( = Sakastan in Eastern Iran) and Arachiosa (in today’s Afghanistan) and belongs to the Gondopharan dynasty. There is great confusion in the literature, some authors think that there was just one Sanabares from the Gondophares line, an Indo-Parthian, in the province of Seistan. Dates are uncertain, too, they range between the first and third century AD.

55 files, last one added on Nov 06, 2016



This semi-independent state frequently under Parthian domination existed between the second century BC and the early third century AD. It was located in southwestern Persia in what the Achaemenides called Khustestan. Strabo describes its inhabitants, the 'Elymaei', as one of the four predatory tribes of the region. As capitals the cities of Susa and Seleukia on the Hedyphon took turns. According to Le Rider, the Elymaean king Kamnaskires I. (Soter) established himself as ruler of Susiana during a period of diminished Seleukid control. He was followed by Kamnaskires Nikephoros, usurpers like Okkonapses, Tigraios, and Dareios, and the Parthian viceroy Phraates II. At around 82/81 BC the Later Kamnaskirids take over with Kamnaskires III. and his queen Anzaze. Their beautiful tetradrachm (which, unfortunately, I do not own) was minted in Seleukia on the Hedyphon. During the reign of Kamnaskires IV. (63/62 - 54/53 BC) the quality of the silver coins deteriorates drastically. The Greek legends of his successor, Kamnaskires V., are illegible. Bronze drachms begin to replace silver in around 60 AD, dates are no longer used, and reverses begin to show mere dashes. At around that time, a new dynasty, which is believed to be Parthian, appears with Orodes I. His drachms still show a Greek legend which is gradually abandoned under his son, Kamnaskires Orodes, in favor of Aramaic. His successor, Phraates (early mid-second cent.), is the last ruler that can be dated with a measure of certainty. He is followed by Osroes, Orodes III., Orodes IV., Orodes V., Prince A and Prince B, and an even less known Unidentified King (Van't Haaff). In 221 AD, the Sassanian king Ardashir conquers Khusestan and puts an end to Elymaean coinage.

59 files, last one added on Apr 08, 2017

Parthia Related Coins


This group consists of coins that existed in and around, before and after the Parthian Empire. They include currency from the Achaemenid Empire (1), Persis, Charakene, the Roman Empire, an intriguing group of 5 Daoi (Dahai) hemidrachms and obols, Kushans, Hephtalites, as well as Indo-Parthians with a batch of copper drachms presumably from the Jammu/Kashmir region. Unfortunately I do not have any Seleukid coins.

The Achaemenid Empire (7th to 4th cent. BC) was one of the greatest empires in ancient history. During its largest expanse it reached from the Aegean coast to the Hindukush, from the Central Asian steppes to the Persian Gulf and the Arabian Sea. As there was no prevailing coin economy outside the Aegean provinces no currency system was developed in the Iranian heartland where the simple lumpy gold and silver coins showing a running king were minted at Sardes.

Persis was the province of Fars in the southeast of today’s Iran and politically and strategically rather unimportant during Parthian times, which is why it retained a relative autonomy. Coins made from the early 3rd cent. BC to the end of the 2nd cent. AD were probably only intended for local use. Three distinct periods of coin production with intermittent suspension of coinage can be seen: phase 1 begins with the death of Seleukos Nikator around 280 BC and ends around 220 BC with the invasion of Antiochos III in Media; phase 2 begins with the defeat of Antiochos III in 190 BC and ends with the Parthian conquest of Mesopotamia and Susiana in 140 BC; phase 3 begins in the 90s BC and lasts until the accession of Papak’s sons, Shahpur and Ardashir, to the throne and the defeat of the Parthian Empire in 228 AD. Ardashir becomes the first Sassanian king thus re-establishing Iranian rule over areas that used to be the Achaemenid Empire.

The Daoi, or Dahae in Latin, were a confederation of three Indo-European, possibly Skythian, but not Indo-Iranian, tribes, one of which were the Parni located in what is today’s Turkmenistan. They took to the road in the 3rd cent. BC and moved to the southwest, invaded and settled the Persian province of Parthava whence they took their name as they usurped more and more territory of the crumbling Seleukid Empire. Their leader Arshak (Gr. Arsakes) became the first Parthian king after a revolt against the Seleukid Emperor Antiochos II.Theos.

16 files, last one added on Jun 25, 2017

12 albums on 1 page(s)

Last additions - Schatz's Gallery
Daoi (Dahae), Unknown Ruler, 130 - 1 BC21 viewsAR hdr, 1,38gr., 14,2mm;
MACW 355-59;
obv.: bare-headed, right, diadem, med.-long hair combed straight back, mustache, long beard; earring, necklace; along left rim the letters cKω; almost East Asian features;
rev.: deconstructed archer/soldier;

ex: Forum Ancient Coins.
SchatzJun 25, 2017
Daoi (Dahae), Unknown Ruler, 250 - 130 BC16 viewsAR scyphate obol, 0,5gr., 10,9mm;
MACW 350, Rtveladze 36;
obv.: bare-headed, left, cicular line and 5 crescent shaped lines for top hair, 4 vertical lines for neck hair, beardless; necklace(?);
rev.: archer, left, facing, w/bow in left hand, short sword on left side(?), wearing tunic w/belt;

ex: Dmitry Markov Coins.
SchatzJun 25, 2017
Daoi (Dahae), Unknown Ruler, 250 - 130 BC18 viewsAR scyphate obol, 0,36gr., 9,72mm;
MACW 350var.;
obv.: bare-headed, left; retrograde 6 and 5 crescent shaped lines for hair, beardless; in bottom and left field possibly traces of inscription;
rev.: headless, heavily stylized archer, facing, w/bow and arrow in left hand, right arm resting on tunic belt, short sword on left side (?);

ex: Xinjiang Coins (Silk Road).
SchatzJun 25, 2017
Daoi (Dahae), Unknown Ruler, 250 - 130 BC18 viewsAR scyphate obol, 0,32gr. , 9,5mm;
MACW 350;
obv.: bare-headed, left, w/4 lines for top hair, 3 lines for neck hair; necklace (?) ;
rev.: headless and footless, heavily stylized archer, facing, w/bow and arrow in left hand, wearing tunic w/belt; large dot in left field, ∫ below;

ex: R. Thun, FL.
SchatzJun 25, 2017
Daoi (Dahae), Unknown Ruler, 250 - 130 BC18 viewsAR scyphate obol,, 0,35gr., 10,05mm;
MACW 348; some green deposits;
obv.: bare-headed, left, 1 circle and 4 curved vertical lines for top hair and 3 vertical lines for neck hair, beardless; necklace (?); remnants of possible legend at bottom;
rev.: headless and footless, heavily stylized archer facing, holding bow and arrow in right hand, dressed in tunic w/belt;

ex: R. Thun, FL.
SchatzJun 25, 2017
Daoi (Dahae), Unknown Ruler, 250 - 130 BC21 viewsAR scyphate obol, 0,36gr., 9,94mm;
MACW 346;
obv. : bare headed, left, w/5 lines for top hair and 3 lines for neck hair, mustache; nose and forehead one curved line; large dot behind head in upper right field; line at bottom for necklace (?);
rev.: headless and footless archer, facing, w/tunic and belt, holding bow w/arrow (?) in left hand, right arm resting on belt;

ex: R. Thun, FL.
SchatzJun 25, 2017
Daoi (Dahae), Unknown Ruler, ca. 250 -130 BC34 viewsAR scyphate hdr, 2,55gr., 16,5mm;
Mitch. ACW 351;
mint: ? ; axis: 6h;
obv.: bare head, right, possibly w/diadem; short, cap like hair, beardless (?); necklace (?); so-called Seleukid style;
rev.: horse’s head, right, w/bridle and rein; symbol in lower right field;

ex: Vienna Coin Show, VA.
1 commentsSchatzJun 25, 2017
Persis22 viewsUncertain King, ca. 1.cent. AD, AR hdr., 1,46gr., 12mm;
Alram 619, Sunrise 646, K&M --;
mint: Persepolis, axis: ?;
obv.: bust, left, w/tiara and diadem, 2 loops and 2 ribbons, crescent on side of tiara, very long neck guard; mustache, short beard; double necklace;
rev.: 2 concentric circles w/2 ribbons in the center (diadem?); along the lower half of the rim Aramaic letters;

ex: Peus Auction 404/405, part of a multi-coin lot.
SchatzJun 13, 2017
Persis25 viewsUncertain King, 1.-2. cent. AD, AR hdr., 1,41gr.,
Alram 619var., Sunrise 646var., K&M --;
mint: Persepolis, axis: ?
obv.:head, left, w/tiara and diadem, 2 loops, ribbon, over tiara crest a row of pellets, 1 pellet on the side, long earflaps and very long neck guard; short beard, mustache; double necklace w/pellet medallion; in right field triskeles w/2 pellets above;
rev.: 2 concentric circles (diadem?) surrounded by dashes forming third circle;

ex: Pegasi Coins, Baltimore Coin Show.
1 commentsSchatzJun 13, 2017
Persis31 viewsArdaxšir IV, late 2.cent.- early 3.cent.AD, AR dr., 2,17 gr., 19mm;
Alram 651, Sunrise 674, K&M 5/19;
mint: Persepolis, axis: 12h;
obv.: bare-headed bust, left, w/diadem, loop and 2 ribbons; hair tied in bunch on top of head, long hair in 5 waves over ear, mustache, long beard in 5 waves; double necklace w/pellets in between; tunic/cuirass; in right field monogr. 13;
rev.: bust, left, w/turret crown, diadem and ribbon; long hair in 4 waves, mustache, med.-long beard; necklace (?); tunic/cuirass; Aramaic letters along left rim, top, and right rim;

ex: CNG eAuction 301, #135.
3 commentsSchatzJun 13, 2017
Persis25 viewsManuchtir II, 2.cent. AD, AR hdr, 1,4gr., 13mm;
Alram 635, Sunrise 661, K&M --;
mint: Persepolis, axis:
obv.: bust, left, w/Parthian style tiara, diadem w/loop and 2 ribbons, tiara has 2 rows of pellets over the crest of the head and a crescent w/pellet on the side, outline of lower tiara decorated w/pellets; mustache, long pointed beard, long hair emerging from under tiara’s neck guard; necklace w/center medallion(?); tunic/cuirass; Aramaic letters on right rim;
rev.: bare-headed, left, w/diadem; similar but beardless profile to that on the obv.; 4 Aramaic letters in left field;

ex: Triskeles Auction 9, #51.
1 commentsSchatzJun 13, 2017
Persis26 viewsVahšir (Oxathres), 1.cent. BC - 1.cent. AD, AR dr., 3,9gr., 17,7mm;
Alram 582, Sunrise 605var., K&M 4/20;
mint: Persepolis, axis: 13h;
obv.: bare-headed bust, left, w/diadem and ribbons; med.-long hair in 3 waves over ear, mustache, short beard; triple necklace; tunic/cuirass;
rev.: fire altar in right field, ruler, right, to the left sacrificing; scene surrounded by Aramaic lettering;

ex: Triskeles Auction 9, #47.
1 commentsSchatzJun 13, 2017
Persis28 viewsDarev II , 1. cent. BC, AR dr., 4,03gr., 18mm;
Alram 564, Sunrise 569, 570, K&M 4/4;
mint: Persepolis, axis: 5h;
obv.: bust, left, w/Parthian style tiara and diadem, knot and 2 ribbons, tiara has 3 rows of pellets across the top and a crescent on the side, long neck guard; mustache w/twirled up ends, med.-long pointed beard; earring, triple necklace or torque; tunic/cuirass;
rev.: fire altar with king, right, sacrificing to the right w/sceptre in extended hand; framed by 4 lines of Aramaic lettering;

ex: CNG eAuction 301, #125.
2 commentsSchatzJun 13, 2017
Persis13 viewsUnknown Ruler, ca. 125 BC, AR dr., 3,85gr., 15,66mm;
Alram NB1, Sunrise 579, K&M 3/9, Mitchener ACW 737 ff.
mint: Persepolis, axis: 15h;
obv.: head, right, w/ diadem and kyrbasia surmounted by eagle and crescent; short beard; earring;
rev.: fire temple in center surmounted by Ahura Mazda, on left king standing right, on right eagle on standard;

ex: Vienna Coin Show, VA.
SchatzJun 13, 2017
Persis14 viewsVadfradad (Autophradates) II., 1st cent. BC, AR dr., 4,17gr.,16,74mm;
Alram (Vadfradad III.), Sunrise 585, K&M 4/1
mint: Persepolis, axis: 13h;
obv.: bare-headed bust, right, w/diadem and 2 ribbons; med.-long cap like hair, long full beard, mustache; earring, triple necklace; tunic/cuirass; crescent above head;
rev.: fire temple w/part of Ahura Mazda above; to left, king standing to right, right column surmounted by eagle standing left; Aramaic legend;

ex: CNG auction 301, #124.
SchatzJun 13, 2017
Achaemenid Empire19 viewsUnknown ruler, 5th - 4th cent. BC, AR siglos, 5,55gr,
SNG Cop 281-283
mint: Sardes, axis: 12h;
obv.: king, bare-headed, w/diadem, advancing in kneeling-running stance, w/lance and bow, long hair, long beard; long tunic;
rev: incuse punch;

ex: G. Clark, VA.
1 commentsSchatzJun 13, 2017

Random files - Schatz's Gallery
Vologases II., 77 - 80 AD10 viewsAR dr., 3,53gr, 20.9mm; Sellwood 72.9, Shore 389 (this coin), Sunrise -; Sinisi II.1.4.a, # 1321, (Vologases I), pp. 112, 113;
mint: Ekbatana (?); axis: 12h;
obv.: head, left, w/ tiara, broad 4-layer diadem, double loop and 3 ribbons, on the crest of the tiara a row of 6 hooks and 1 central double hook, diadem w/1 side hook (horn?), side lock (hook) on temple, mustache, medium-long straight pointed beard rounded on the sides; earring, 3-layer necklace; in upper right field the 3 Aramaic letters for mwl; tunic/cuirass w/ornamental border; dotted border 9:30 to 14:30h;
rev.: archer, right, on throne, w/bow in one outstretched hand and monogram below bow; 4 lines of legend readable: OΛIIΛ invertedE(ΛC) OΛIIΛ inverted E Λ(Ͷ) ΠOIXVHOΛO XIVIVVHX;
the style deviates completely from the two former coins, the metal is not silver, it has a distinct bronze sheen. Sinisi lists it under ‘Uncertain Coins and Forgeries’. This coin may be a contemporary imitation;

a Shore plate coin;

ex: Vienna Coin Show, VA.
Phraates IV., 38 - 2 BC12 viewsAE 10, 2,24gr., 10, 21mm;
Sellw. --, Shore --;
mint: Ekbatana or Mithradatkart, axis: 12h
obv.: bare-headed, right, w/ diadem; medium-long hair in 4 waves, mustache, medium-long pointed beard; royal wart; an eagle seems to be in the upper right field;
rev.: horse, right, standing; no legend visible but in the right field, the monogr. 30 seems to have been lost by corrosion or removal;

this coin appears to have a Sellw. 52 obv. combined with a Sellw. 51 rev.;

ex: Sphinx Numismatics, CAN.
Elymais -- Orodes I., late 1st to early 2nd cent. AD24 viewsAE tdr., 15,61gr, 27,44mm;
mint: Susa (?)
Van’t Haaff 11.1.1-1a (this coin), Alram p. 146, #466, NB3;
obv.: bare-headed bust, left, w/2-strand diadem, loop, 2 ribbons; straight top hair running across head, side hair combed backwards, mustache, long pointed curly beard, multi-turn torque ending in pellet; cuirass w/shoulder pads; in right lower filed anchor w/2 upper and 2 lower cross bars, crescent and pellet above; in lower left field Aramaic legend ‘Orodes’; dotted border 10 - 12h;
rev.: head, left, w/diadem surrounded by 4 lines of blundered letters;

plate coin in:; in: P.A. Van't Haaff, Catalogue of Elymaean Coinage, p. 92, type 11.1.1-1a;

ex: CNG, Triton VII, # 532, ex: Bellaria Collection; ex: CNG 60, # 1041; ex: Gorny and Mosch 96, # 252.
1 commentsSchatz
Mithradates I., 171-138 BC,8 viewsAR dr., 3,68gr, 18,6mm; Sellwood 11.3, Shore 26;
mint: Nisa, axis: 12h;
AR dr., 3,68gr, 18.56mm;
Sellwood 11.3, Shore 26;
mint: Nisa, axis: 12h;
obv.: bare-headed, left, w/diadem and ribbons; necklace w/2 opposing pellet finials; laurel wreath border 10 to 16h;
rev.: archer, right, on omphalos, w/bow in right hand; 3-line legend: BΛΣIΛEΩΣ MEΓΛΛoY ΛPΣΛKoY; exergual line;

ex: Busso Peus Auction 386/387