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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Greek Coins| ▸ |Hellenistic Monarchies| ▸ |Ptolemaic Egypt||View Options:  |  |  |   

Ptolemaic Kingdom of Egypt

After Alexander the Great's death, Egypt was administered by Ptolemy, one of his friends and generals. In 305 B.C., Ptolemy crowned himself king, establishing one of the most important and flourishing Hellenistic monarchies. Ptolemaic rule lasted for 275 years, until 30 B.C. The culture was a complex mixture of Egyptian and Greek traditions, best represented by the famous city of Alexandria. All the male rulers of the dynasty took the name Ptolemy, while queens regnant were all called Cleopatra, Arsinoe or Berenice. The most famous member of the line was the last queen, Cleopatra VII, known for her role in the Roman political battles between Julius Caesar and Pompey, and later between Octavian and Mark Antony. Her suicide at the conquest by Rome marked the end of Ptolemaic rule in Egypt.

Ptolemaic Kingdom of Egypt, Ptolemy IV Philopator, 221 - 204 B.C.

|Ptolemaic| |Egypt|, |Ptolemaic| |Kingdom| |of| |Egypt,| |Ptolemy| |IV| |Philopator,| |221| |-| |204| |B.C.||dichalkon|NEW
Ptolemy IV's surname Philopator means father lover, ironic since according to some authorities he poisoned his father. Ptolemy IV is a major protagonist of the apocryphal 3 Maccabees, which describes events following the Battle of Raphia, in both Jerusalem and Alexandria. He was a cruel and evil monarch.
GP110808. Bronze dichalkon, Lorber CPE B550, Svoronos -, BMC Ptolemies -; Weiser -; SNG Cop -, Noeske -, SNG Milan -, Malter -, aVF, dark green patina, scratches, beveled obv. edge, central cavities, weight 3.114 g, maximum diameter 15.6 mm, die axis 0o, Tyre (Lebanon) mint, 221 - 204 B.C.; obverse diademed head of Zeus-Ammon right; reverse ΠTOΛEMAIOY BAΣIΛEΩΣ, eagle standing left on thunderbolt, wings closed, club left, ΣΕ monogram between legs; only one sale (misattributed) of this type listed on Coin Archives in the last two decades; extremely rare; $200.00 SALE PRICE $180.00


Ptolemaic Kingdom of Egypt, Ptolemy III Euergetes, 246 - 221 B.C.

|Ptolemaic| |Egypt|, |Ptolemaic| |Kingdom| |of| |Egypt,| |Ptolemy| |III| |Euergetes,| |246| |-| |221| |B.C.||trichalkon|
Ptolemy III Euergetes was the third ruler of the Ptolemaic dynasty in Egypt. He promoted the translation of Jewish scriptures into Greek as the Septuagint. Due to a falling out at the Seleucid court, his eldest sister Berenice Phernophorus was murdered along with her infant son. In response, he invaded Syria, occupied Antioch, and even reached Babylon. This war, the Third Syrian War, is cryptically alluded to in Daniel XI 7-9. The Ptolemaic kingdom reached the height of its power during his reign.
GP111047. Bronze trichalkon, Lorber CPE B400, Svoronos 969, SNG Cop 183, Noeske -, Weiser -, F, well centered, dark patina, corrosion, scattered pitting, central dimples, obv. edge beveled, weight 4.867 g, maximum diameter 17.2 mm, die axis 0o, Alexandria mint, c. 230 - 222 B.C.; obverse head of Alexander right, wearing elephant headdress and aegis; reverse ΠTOΛEMAIOY BAΣIΛEΩΣ, eagle standing left on fulmen (thunderbolt), head left, wings closed, filleted cornucopia left, (chi rho monogram) between legs; $150.00 SALE PRICE $135.00


Ptolemaic Kingdom of Egypt, Ptolemy III Euergetes, 246 - 222 B.C.

|Ptolemaic| |Egypt|, |Ptolemaic| |Kingdom| |of| |Egypt,| |Ptolemy| |III| |Euergetes,| |246| |-| |222| |B.C.||hemiobol|
Ptolemy III Euergetes was the third ruler of the Ptolemaic dynasty in Egypt. He promoted the translation of Jewish scriptures into Greek as the Septuagint. Due to a falling out at the Seleucid court, his eldest sister Berenice Phernophorus was murdered along with her infant son. In response, he invaded Syria, occupied Antioch, and even reached Babylon. This war, the Third Syrian War, is cryptically alluded to in Daniel XI 7-9. The Ptolemaic kingdom reached the height of its power during his reign.
GP111048. Bronze hemiobol, Lorber CPE B449; Svoronos 1007; Weiser 109; SNG Cop 646; SNG Milan 201; BMC Ptolemies p. 52, 60; SGCV II 7824, Choice gVF, green patina, well centered, central dimples, obv. edge beveled, weight 6.547 g, maximum diameter 19.5 mm, die axis 0o, Cyprus, Paphos mint, 246 - 222 B.C.; obverse horned head of Zeus-Ammon right, wearing diadem and basileion; reverse ΠTOΛEMAIOY BAΣIΛEΩΣ, cult-statue of Aphrodite standing facing on base, wearing chiton and polos, holding lotus blossom to breast with right hand, poppies or myrtle branches in left hand; $200.00 SALE PRICE $180.00


Ptolemaic Kingdom of Egypt, Cleopatra VII Thea Philopator, 51 - 30 B.C., Paphos, Cyprus

|Cleopatra| |VII|, |Ptolemaic| |Kingdom| |of| |Egypt,| |Cleopatra| |VII| |Thea| |Philopator,| |51| |-| |30| |B.C.,| |Paphos,| |Cyprus||1/4| |obol|
Kreuzer, in his book The Coinage System of Cleopatra VII and Augustus in Cyprus, assembles evidence dating this type to Cleopatra VII instead of the reign of Ptolemy IV used in older references.
GP110629. Bronze 1/4 obol, Kreuzer p. 44, first illustration; Svoronos 1160 (Ptolemy IV); SNG Cop 649; Weiser -, F, weight 1.297 g, maximum diameter 11.4 mm, die axis 0o, Paphos mint, obverse diademed bust of Cleopatra VII as Isis right, hair in melon-coiffure; reverse ΠTOΛEMAIOY - BAΣIΛEΩΣ, double cornucopia flanked by ribbons; $100.00 SALE PRICE $90.00


Ptolemaic Kingdom of Egypt, Cleopatra VII Thea Philopator, 51 - 30 B.C., Paphos, Cyprus

|Cleopatra| |VII|, |Ptolemaic| |Kingdom| |of| |Egypt,| |Cleopatra| |VII| |Thea| |Philopator,| |51| |-| |30| |B.C.,| |Paphos,| |Cyprus||1/4| |obol|
Kreuzer, in his book The Coinage System of Cleopatra VII and Augustus in Cyprus, assembles evidence dating this type to Cleopatra VII instead of the reign of Ptolemy IV used in older references.
GP110630. Bronze 1/4 obol, Kreuzer p. 44, first illustration; Svoronos 1160 (Ptolemy IV); SNG Cop 649; Weiser -, F, weight 1.797 g, maximum diameter 13.2 mm, die axis 0o, Paphos mint, obverse diademed bust of Cleopatra VII as Isis right, hair in melon-coiffure; reverse ΠTOΛEMAIOY - BAΣIΛEΩΣ, double cornucopia flanked by ribbons; $150.00 SALE PRICE $135.00


Ptolemaic Kingdom of Egypt, Ptolemy II Philadelphos, 285 - 246 B.C.

|Ptolemaic| |Egypt|, |Ptolemaic| |Kingdom| |of| |Egypt,| |Ptolemy| |II| |Philadelphos,| |285| |-| |246| |B.C.||tetradrachm|
Ptolemy II encouraged education, commerce, industry, immigration and trade resulting in a prosperous growing economy and making him the richest monarch of his age. His 112 ships comprised the most powerful fleet that had ever existed. His splendid court compares with the Versailles of Louis XIV. An enthusiast for Hellenic culture, he also adopted Egyptian religious concepts bolstering his image as a pharaoh. At the Library at Alexandria, Jewish texts were translated and transcribed by seventy Jewish scholars, creating the Septuagint, the oldest Greek version of the Hebrew Bible. He defeated the Seleucids in the first Syrian War, gaining control of western Cilicia, southern Lycia, Caunus, Halicarnassus, Myndus, Cnidus, probably Miletus, all of Phoenicia, and even part of Syria.
GS110597. Silver tetradrachm, Lorber CPE 414; Svoronos 365; Meydancikkale 5076 - 5077; BMC Ptolemies p. 27, 39; SNG Cop -; Noeske -; Weiser -; Hosking -, F, tight flan, light tone, marks, weight 13.657 g, maximum diameter 26.1 mm, die axis 0o, uncertain (9) Cyprus mint, c. 285 - 275 B.C.; obverse diademed head of Ptolemy I right, wearing aegis; reverse ΠTOΛEMAIOY BAΣIΛEΩΣ, eagle standing left on thunderbolt, head left, wings slightly open, tail left, over A lower left; from the CEB Collection; $300.00 SALE PRICE $270.00


Ptolemaic Kingdom of Egypt, Ptolemy III Euergetes, 246 - 222 B.C.

|Ptolemaic| |Egypt|, |Ptolemaic| |Kingdom| |of| |Egypt,| |Ptolemy| |III| |Euergetes,| |246| |-| |222| |B.C.||hemiobol|
Ptolemy III Euergetes was the third ruler of the Ptolemaic dynasty in Egypt. He promoted the translation of Jewish scriptures into Greek as the Septuagint. Due to a falling out at the Seleucid court, his eldest sister Berenice Phernophorus was murdered along with her infant son. In response, he invaded Syria, occupied Antioch, and even reached Babylon. This war, the Third Syrian War, is cryptically alluded to in Daniel XI 7-9. The Ptolemaic kingdom reached the height of its power during his reign.
GY110319. Bronze hemiobol, Lorber CPE B469, Svoronos 709, SNG Cop 496, BMC Ptolemies p. 53, 70, Weiser 57, Hosking 27; SNG Milan 138; Noeske 96, VF, centered on a broad flan, edge cracks, earthen encrustation on edge, obverse edge beveled, central dimples, weight 6.254 g, maximum diameter 20.1 mm, die axis 330o, Phoenicia, Tyre mint, c. 230 - 222 B.C.; obverse diademed and horned head of Zeus-Ammon right; reverse ΠTOΛEMAIOY BAΣIΛEΩΣ (King Ptolemy), eagle standing left on thunderbolt, wings closed, club left, no control letters; $120.00 SALE PRICE $108.00


Kyrene, North Africa, Ptolemy Apion, c. 101 - 96 B.C.

|Kyrenaica|, |Kyrene,| |North| |Africa,| |Ptolemy| |Apion,| |c.| |101| |-| |96| |B.C.||quarter-obol|
Ptolemy Apion was a son of Ptolemy VIII, perhaps by an Egyptian concubine. This makes him a half-brother of Ptolemy IX and X. Ptolemy Apion died in 96 B.C., without an heir, leaving his kingdom to the Roman Republic.

According to Butrey, Apion's coinage was nothing but very small change, with a peak about 1.3 grams. Buttrey notes, "the Greek coinage of Cyrenaica, of glorious tradition, ended in the lamentable small bronzes of Apion."
GB110044. Bronze quarter-obol, Buttrey Cyrene 542 - 603, VF, tight flan, dark patina, earthen deposits, weight 1.127 g, maximum diameter 11.6 mm, die axis 0o, Kyrene (near Shahhat, Libya) mint, c. 101 - 96 B.C.; obverse diademed head of Ptolemy I as Zeus right, wearing aegis; reverse ΠTOΛEMAIOY BAΣIΛEΩΣ, head of Libya or Isis right; ex Naville auction 65 (30 May 2021), lot 111 (part of); ex Richard Plant collection; rare; $90.00 SALE PRICE $81.00


Ptolemaic Kingdom of Egypt, 9 Large Bronze Coins, c. 264 - 204 B.C.

|Greek| |Bulk| |Lots|, |Ptolemaic| |Kingdom| |of| |Egypt,| |9| |Large| |Bronze| |Coins,| |c.| |264| |-| |204| |B.C.||Lot|
The following list was provided by the consignor and has not been verified by FORVM:
1) Ptolemy II, AE41 drachm, 66.3g, cf. Svoronos 463.
2) Ptolemy III, AE32 hemidrachm, Svoronos 965.
3) Ptolemy IV, hemidrachm, Svoronos 1127.
4) Ptolemy IV, drachm, Svoronos 1148.
5-9) Ptolemy IV, AE35, Svoronos 974 (4 specimens).
LT96234. Bronze Lot, 9 large bronze coins, c. 33g - 66g, 33.5mm - 39.7mm, average F-VF, with porosity and pitting, c. 264 - 204 B.C.; obverse laureate head of Zeus right; reverse eagle or two eagles standing on thunderbolt; unattributed, no tags or flips, the actual coins in the photograph, as-is, no returns, 9 large bronze coins; $340.00 SALE PRICE $306.00


Ptolemaic Kingdom of Egypt, Lot of 11 Scarce Bronzes, 305 - 30 B.C.

|Multiple| |Coin| |Lots|, |Ptolemaic| |Kingdom| |of| |Egypt,| |Lot| |of| |11| |Scarce| |Bronzes,| |305| |-| |30| |B.C.||Lot|
The following list was provided by the consignor. Types and grades have not been verified by FORVM:
1) Ptolemy I, AE20, Bust of Alexander, Svoronos 220, gF.
2) Ptolemy I, AE15, Cypriot Mint, Svoronos 630, VF, ex Ora Eads Collection.
3) Ptolemy II, imitative issue, Syracuse, Svoronos 610. aVF.
4) Ptolemy IV, AE20, Draped bust of Ptolemy III right, Svoronos 1000, gF/aF, countermark on each side.
5) Ptolemy IV, AE20, Draped bust of Ptolemy III right, Svoronos 1000, aF.
6) Berenike II or Cleopatra I, AE22, Veiled female bust right / Marathos standing, leaning on column, VF, rough, ex Ora Eads Collection.
7) Marathos, AE16, Veiled goddess or Cleopatra I right / prow right, BMC 15-18, VF, ex Ora Eads Collection.
8) Ptolemy IV, AE26, Kyrene, Jugate heads Apollo and Artemis, Svoronos 1137, F, harshly cleaned, obv. pitted, very rare, ex CNG 340 (12 Mar 14), lot 216.
9) Ptolemy VIII, AE12, Kyrene, Eagle left, wings open, Svoronos 1655, VF.
10) Ptolemy XII, AE24, Cypriot Mint, large cornucopia symbol before one eagle standing left, Svoronos 1814, aVF, typical thin flan.
11) Late Ptolemaic, c. 100 B.C., Svoronos 1698 var., VF, skeuomorph central marks.
LT96208. Bronze Lot, Ptolemaic Egypt, 11 scarce bronzes, c. 305 - 30 B.C.; unattributed, no tags or flips, the actual coins in the photograph, as-is, no returns, 11 coins; $490.00 SALE PRICE $441.00




  






REFERENCES

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Burnett, A., M. Amandry, et al. Roman Provincial Coinage. (1992 - ).
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Catalog current as of Friday, March 31, 2023.
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