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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Greek Coins| ▸ |Hellenistic Monarchies| ▸ |Kingdom of Persis||View Options:  |  |  | 

Kingdom of Persis

Persis was located in what is now southern Iran. "Persians" settled the area as early as the 8th century B.C. From the time after its conquest by Alexander the Great, Persis was most often quasi-independent, under the hegemony of a Seleukid or Parthian king. Immediately following Alexander's death, Persis was subject to the Seleucid Kingdom. About 290 B.C., Persis regained independence. The coins produced during this period were Greek-inspired, but inscriptions were Aramaic, symbolic of Persis' rejection of the Greek ruling class. Sometime between c. 250 and 223 B.C., the Seleucids regained control. Mithradates II later incorporated Persis as a sub-kingdom of Parthia. Under Parthian domination, the coins and appearance of the kings depicted on them assumed the Parthian style. The last King of Persis, Artaxerxes, defeated the Parthians and founded the Sassanian Empire.Persis_Map

Kingdom of Persis, Ardaxsir (Artaxerxes) II, 1st Century B.C. AR Drachm

|Kingdom| |of| |Persis|, |Kingdom| |of| |Persis,| |Ardaxsir| |(Artaxerxes)| |II,| |1st| |Century| |B.C.| |AR| |Drachm||drachm|
Persis was located in what is now southern Iran. "Persians" settled the area as early as the 8th century B.C. From the time after its conquest by Alexander the Great, Persis was most often quasi-independent, under the hegemony of a Seleukid or Parthian king. Immediately following Alexander's death, Persis was subject to the Seleucid Kingdom. About 290 B.C., Persis regained independence. The coins produced during this period were Greek-inspired, but inscriptions were Aramaic, symbolic of Persis' rejection of the Greek ruling class. Sometime between c. 250 and 223 B.C., the Seleucids regained control. Mithradates II later incorporated Persis as a sub-kingdom of Parthia. Under Parthian domination, the coins and appearance of the kings depicted on them assumed the Parthian style. The last King of Persis, Artaxerxes, defeated the Parthians and founded the Sassanian Empire.
GS65691. Silver drachm, Alram IP 570; Klose-Mseler 4/10b; Sunrise 598; BMC Arabia p. 222, 2; Tyler-Smith -, F, toned, edge beveled by hammering, edge cracks, edge chip, weight 3.228 g, maximum diameter 24.7 mm, die axis 270o, Persepolis (Fars Province, Iran) mint, 50 - 1 B.C.; obverse bust left, pointed beard, wearing Persepolitan crown with turrets, diadem with three ends, torque of three segments, and cloak, monogram behind; reverse king on right facing left, holding raised scepter in left hand before a lighted alter, Aramaic legend around.; $55.00 (55.55)


Kingdom of Persis, Ardaxsir (Artaxerxes) IV, Late 2nd - Early 3rd Century A.D.

|Kingdom| |of| |Persis|, |Kingdom| |of| |Persis,| |Ardaxsir| |(Artaxerxes)| |IV,| |Late| |2nd| |-| |Early| |3rd| |Century| |A.D.||drachm|
Persis was located in what is now southern Iran. "Persians" settled the area as early as the 8th century B.C. From the time after its conquest by Alexander the Great, Persis was most often quasi-independent, under the hegemony of a Seleukid or Parthian king. Immediately following Alexander's death, Persis was subject to the Seleucid Kingdom. About 290 B.C., Persis regained independence. The coins produced during this period were Greek-inspired, but inscriptions were Aramaic, symbolic of Persis' rejection of the Greek ruling class. Sometime between c. 250 and 223 B.C., the Seleucids regained control. Mithradates II later incorporated Persis as a sub-kingdom of Parthia. Under Parthian domination, the coins and appearance of the kings depicted on them assumed the Parthian style. The last King of Persis, Artaxerxes, defeated the Parthians and founded the Sassanian Empire.
GS65693. Silver drachm, Alram IP 647; Sunrise 674; Tyler-Smith 230; Klose-Mseler 5/19; BMC Arabia p. 244, 1, VF, uneven toning, rev. double/triple struck and off-center, scratches, edge raged with splits, weight 2.243 g, maximum diameter 19.1 mm, die axis 180o, Persepolis (Fars Province, Iran) mint, late 2nd century A.D.; obverse diademed bust left with hair knot, medium length squared beard, bust of king left, wearing diadem, neck torque, and cloak, Aramaic legend above and behind; reverse bust of king left, short beard, wearing Persepolitan crown with three turrets and diadem, neck torque, and cloak, Aramaic legend before and behind; $55.00 (55.55)


Kingdom of Persis, Pakor I, 1st Century A.D.

|Kingdom| |of| |Persis|, |Kingdom| |of| |Persis,| |Pakor| |I,| |1st| |Century| |A.D.||obol|
The early kings of Persis were tributaries to the Seleucid rulers, until c. 140 B.C., when the Parthians conquered the region, according to Strabo. The Parthian Empire then took control of Persis under Arsacid king Mithridates I (c. 171 - 138 B.C.), but visibly allowed local rulers to remain, and permitted the emission of coinage bearing the title of Mlk ("King"). The last King of Persis, Artaxerxes V, defeated the Parthians and founded the Sassanian Empire.
GS92196. Silver obol, Klose-Mseler 4/28; Sunrise 609; Alram IP 597 (Pakor II); Tyler-Smith 178 (Pakor II), BMC Arabia -, VF, very broad flan, toned, light marks, weight 0.980 g, maximum diameter 16.3 mm, die axis 0o, Persepolis (Fars Province, Iran) mint, 1st century A.D.; obverse bearded bust left, wearing diadem, thick wavy hair behind; reverse triskeles, uncertain Aramaic legend around, slightly concave; ex Marc Breitsprecher; $110.00 (111.10)










REFERENCES

Alram, M. Iranisches Personennamenbuch: Nomina Propria Iranica In Nummis. Osterreichischen Akademie Der Wissenschaften. (Wien, 1986).
Classical Numismatic Group. "An American Collection fo the Kings of Persis" in CNG Auction 90, Internet and Mail Bid Sale, 23 May 2012, pp. 162 - 173.
De Morgan, J. Monnaies orientales: numismatique de la Perse antique. (Paris, 1927-1933).
Hill, G. Catalogue of the Greek Coins in the British Museum: Arabia, Mesopotamia and Persia. (London, 1922).
Klose, D. & W. Mseler. Die Mnzen aus Persepolis von Alexander dem Groen zu den Sasaniden. (Munich, 2008).
Mitchiner, M. Oriental Coins: the Ancient and Classical World. (London, 1978).
Gyselen, R. ed. New Evidence for Sasanian Numismatics: The Collection of Ahmad Saeedi. (Leuven, Belgium, 2004).
Sear, D. Greek Coins and Their Values, Volume 2, Asia and Africa. (London, 1979).
Sear, D. Greek Imperial Coins and Their Values. (London, 1982).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Denmark, The Royal Collection of Coins and Medals, Danish National Museum, Vol. 7: Cyprus to India. (West Milford, NJ, 1982).
Tyler-Smith, S. "A parcel of Persis drachms, half drachms and obols" in Numismatic Chronicle 164 (2004), pp. 253 - 271.

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