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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Greek Coins| ▸ |Persian Empire||View Options:  |  |  | 

The Persian Empire

The Persian or Achaemenid Empire (c. 550 - 330 B.C.) was the largest empire in ancient history extending across Asia, Africa and Europe, including Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan, parts of Central Asia, Asia Minor, Thrace and Macedonia, much of the Black Sea coastal regions, Iraq, northern Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Palestine and Israel, Lebanon, Syria, and much of ancient Egypt as far west as Libya.Persian Empire

Lesbos, 5th - 4th Century B.C.

|Lesbos|, |Lesbos,| |5th| |-| |4th| |Century| |B.C.|, |1/3| |stater|
The specific satrap has not been confirmed.
SL95876. Billon 1/3 stater, BMC Lesbos 58, pl. XXXI, 3; SNG Cop -; Winzer -, NGC VG, Strike 4/5; Surface 2/5 (5872605-037), weight 3.90 g, maximum diameter 14 mm, die axis 225o, uncertain Lesbos mint, 5th - 4th Century B.C.; obverse youthful male head (satrap?) left, wearing tight-fitting cap; reverse head of roaring lion left within incuse square; NGC| Lookup; extremely rare; $350.00 SALE |PRICE| $315.00
 


Achaemenid Empire, Carian Satrapy, Pixodaros, c. 340 - 335 B.C.

|Persian| |Caria|, |Achaemenid| |Empire,| |Carian| |Satrapy,| |Pixodaros,| |c.| |340| |-| |335| |B.C.|, |didrachm|
Pixodarus was the youngest of the three sons of Hecatomnus, all of whom successively ruled. To secure the friendship of Philip II, king of Macedonia, Pixodarus offered his eldest daughter in marriage to his Philip's son Arrhidaeus. Arrhidaeus' ambitious younger brother, Alexander (later Alexander the Great) offered himself instead. Pixodarus eagerly agreed but Philip put an end to the scheme. Pixodarus died, apparently a natural death, before Alexander landed in Asia in 334 B.C. and was succeeded by his Persian son-in-law Orontobates.
SH63582. Silver didrachm, SNG Cop 597; SNGvA 2375; SNG Keckman 280; SNG Kayhan 891; SNG Lockett 2913; BMC Caria p. 185, 5 ff.; Weber 6608; SGCV II 4966, aVF, porous, weight 6.541 g, maximum diameter 19.5 mm, die axis 0o, Mylasa (Milas, Turkey) mint, c. 340 - 335 B.C.; obverse head of Apollo facing slightly right; reverse ΠIΞΩ∆APOY, Zeus Labraundos standing right, labrys (double-headed axe) over shoulder in right, lotus-tipped scepter vertical in left; $200.00 SALE |PRICE| $180.00
 


Cilicia, Persian Rule, 4th Century B.C.

|Cilicia|, |Cilicia,| |Persian| |Rule,| |4th| |Century| |B.C.|, |obol|
Cilicia extended along the Mediterranean coast east from Pamphylia, to the Amanus Mountains, which separated it from Syria.
SH95333. Silver obol, SNG BnF 482, SNG Levante 232, Göktürk -, Troxell-Kagan -, gVF, dark tone, tight oval flan, some porosity, tiny edge split, weight 0.702 g, maximum diameter 11.8 mm, die axis 0o, uncertain mint, 4th century B.C.; obverse crowned and bearded head (of Persian Great King?) right; reverse forepart of Pegasos right; very rare; $180.00 SALE |PRICE| $162.00
 


Persian Empire, Lydia, Anatolia, Darius II - Artaxerxes II, c. 420 - 375 B.C.

|Persian| |Lydia|, |Persian| |Empire,| |Lydia,| |Anatolia,| |Darius| |II| |-| |Artaxerxes| |II,| |c.| |420| |-| |375| |B.C.|, |1/4| |siglos|
This type was minted in Lydia, Anatolia, while under Persian control, prior to Alexander the Great's conquest. The Persian or Achaemenid Empire (c. 550 - 330 B.C.) was the largest empire in ancient history extending across Asia, Africa and Europe, including Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan, parts of Central Asia, Asia Minor, Thrace and Macedonia, much of the Black Sea coastal regions, Iraq, northern Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Palestine and Israel, Lebanon, Syria, and much of ancient Egypt as far west as Libya.Persian Empire
GS94117. Silver 1/4 siglos, Carradice type IV; BMC Arabia p. 167, 143, pl. XXVI, 27; Rosen 679, F, toned, porous, round flan, weight 1.176 g, maximum diameter 8.5 mm, probably Sardis (Sart, Turkey) mint, c. 420 - 375 B.C.; obverse kneeling-running figure of the Great King right, drawing bow, bearded, crowned, quiver at shoulder; reverse square incuse; very rare; $100.00 SALE |PRICE| $90.00
 


Achaemenid Empire, Magnesia ad Maeandrum, Ionia, Archepolis, c. 459 - 412 B.C.

|Magnesia| |ad| |Meandrum|, |Achaemenid| |Empire,| |Magnesia| |ad| |Maeandrum,| |Ionia,| |Archepolis,| |c.| |459| |-| |412| |B.C.|, |tetartemorion|
Archeptolis was a satrap of Magnesia on the Maeander, Ionia for the Achaemenid Empire, c. 459 to 412 B.C. He succeeded his father, the Athenian general Themistocles, and the rule of this father and son has been called "a Greek dynasty in the Persian Empire." Archeptolis is said to have married his half-sister Mnesiptolema (daughter of Themistocles from his second wife). Archeptolis had several sisters and three brothers. One brother, Cleophantus, was possibly the ruler of Lampsacus. Pausanias later wrote that the sons of Themistocles returned to Athens where they dedicated a painting of Themistocles in the Parthenon and erected a bronze statue to Artemis Leucophryene, the goddess of Magnesia, on the Acropolis. They may have returned from Ionia in old age, after 412 B.C., when the Persians took firm control of the Greek cities of Asia. They may have been expelled by the Achaemenid satrap Tissaphernes sometime between 412 and 399 B.C.
GS92802. Silver tetartemorion, apparently unpublished in this denomination but more than 20 specimens known from auctions, cf. Nollé-Wenninger 2A (trihemiobol), aVF, well centered, toned, struck with worn dies, weight 0.208 g, maximum diameter 6.2 mm, die axis 45o, Ionia, Magnesia ad Maeandrum (near Tekin, Turkey) mint, c. 459 - 412 B.C.; obverse diademed and bearded male head right; reverse eagle flying left within linear square border within incuse square; rare; $95.00 SALE |PRICE| $85.50
 


Salamis, Cyprus, Evagoras II, c. 361 - 351 B.C.

|Cyprus|, |Salamis,| |Cyprus,| |Evagoras| |II,| |c.| |361| |-| |351| |B.C.|, |AE| |12|
Evagoras II was a king of Salamis in Cyprus, and later a satrap for Achaemenid Persia in Phoenicia. He was possibly a son of his predecessor, Nicocles, and a grandson of Evagoras I. He was pro-Persian, for which he was deposed c. 351 B.C. by a popular revolt led by his nephew Pnytagoras, who succeeded him as king. Evagoras fled to the Persian court, where Artaxerxes III gave him rule of Sidon in Phoenicia, following the defeat of the rebellion of Tennes. His rule in Sidon was so bad that after three years, in 346 B.C., he was chased out of the city by the populace, who called upon a descendant of the ancient royal line, Abdashtart II, to replace him. Evagoras fled back to Cyprus, where he was arrested and executed.
GB89406. Bronze AE 12, Tziambazis 128, BMC Cyprus p. 60, 69; Bank of Cyprus -, aF, rough, obverse off center, weight 2.611 g, maximum diameter 15.7 mm, die axis 345o, Salamis mint, c. 361 - 351 B.C.; obverse lion walking left, ram's head left above; reverse horse standing left, star with eight rays above, ankh symbol before; $70.00 SALE |PRICE| $63.00
 


Samaria, Imitation of Persian Empire, Sidon, Phoenicia, Ba'Alshillem II, c. 401 - 366 B.C.

|Judaea| |&| |Palestine|, |Samaria,| |Imitation| |of| |Persian| |Empire,| |Sidon,| |Phoenicia,| |Ba'Alshillem| |II,| |c.| |401| |-| |366| |B.C.|, |1/16| |shekel|
The style is clumsy. The king faces left, which is very unusual, not the common right facing type. The lion may be holding a dagger!
SH95318. Silver 1/16 shekel, cf. Meshorer-Qedar 199; for Sidon prototype see Elayi 2004 851, HGC 10 240, Betlyon 27, gF, toned, light deposits, edge cracks, weight 0.626 g, maximum diameter 9.8 mm, Samarian mint, obverse war galley left with oars, row of shields along bulwarks, two lines of waves below, Phoenician letters (including taw) above; reverse Great king advancing left reaches with right to grab lion, draws back a dagger in his right, Phoenician letter ayin in center, all in incuse square, the lion also seems to be holding a dagger; $65.00 SALE |PRICE| $58.00
 







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REFERENCES|

Ashton, R., et al. "The Pixodarus Hoard" in Coin Hoards IX (2002).
Babelon, E. Traité des Monnaies Grecques et Romaines. (Paris, 1901-1932).
Betlyon, J.W. The Coinage and Mints of Phoenicia. The Pre-Alexandrine Period. Harvard Semitic Monographs, Vol. 26. (Chico, CA, 1982).
Carradice, I. "The Dinar Hoard of Persian Sigloi" in Studies Price. (London, 1998).
Deutsch, R. & M. Heltzer. "Numismatic Evidence from the Persian Period from the Sharon Plain" Transeuphratene, Vol. 13, 1997, pp. 17-20.
Elayi, J. & A.G. Elayi. Le monnayage de la cité phénicienne de Sidon à l'époque perse (Ve-IVe s. av. J.-C.). (Paris, 2004).
Elayi, J. & A.G. Elayi. The Coinage of the Phoenician City of Tyre in the Persian Period (5th-4th cent. BCE). (Leuven-Paris-Walpole, MA, 2009).
Hendin, D. Guide to Biblical Coins, 5th Edition. (Amphora, 2010).
Meshorer, Y. A Treasury of Jewish Coins from the Persian Period to Bar Kokhba. (Jerusalem, 2001).
Mildenberg, L. "Yehud: A Preliminary Study of the Provincial Coinage of Judaea" in Essays Thompson (1979).
Meshorer, Y. & S. Qedar. The Coinage of Samaria in the 4th Century BCE. (Jerusalem, 1991).
Moysey, R.A. "The Silver Stater Issues of Pharnabazos and Datames from the Mint of Tarsus in Cilicia" in ANSMN 31 (1986).
Noe, S.P. Two Hoards of Persian Sigloi. ANSNNM 136. (New York, 1956).
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Sear, D. Greek Coins and Their Values, Volume 2, Asia and Africa. (London, 1979).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Denmark, The Royal Collection of Coins and Medals, Danish National Museum. (Copenhagen, 1942-1979).
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Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Finland, The Erkki Keckman Collection in the Skopbank, Helsinki, (Helsinki, 1994-1999).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, France, Cabinet des Médailles, Bibliothéque Nationale. (Paris, 1993 - 2001).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum Switzerland I. Levante-Cilicia. (Zurich,1986).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Turkey 1: The Muharrem Kayhan Collection. (Istanbul, 2002).
Troxell, H.A. "Orontes, satrap of Mysia" in SNR 60. (1981).
Vismara, N. Monetazione Arcaica della Lycia. (Milan, 1989 -1996).
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