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Ancient coins of Judaea and Palestine

Coins of Judaea and Palestine are also presented in our Judean and Biblical catalog section. Here all coins of Judaea and Palestine are grouped together. In our Judean and Biblical catalog section coins are organized by types and rulers and are presented with additional historical information and biblical references.

Judean Kingdom, Anonymous Hasmonean, c. 140 - 37 B.C.

|Judean| |Kingdom|, |Judean| |Kingdom,| |Anonymous| |Hasmonean,| |c.| |140| |-| |37| |B.C.||tessera|
A Judaean coin expert informs us that there are nine known specimens of this type, one specimen of this type was discovered during excavations at Mt. Gerizim, and the second best known specimen of this type sold for $12,000 a few years ago.
JD97077. Lead tessera, Hendin 1157 (RRR), Meshore TJC -, Sofaer Collection -, HGC 10 -, SNG Cop -, F, scratches, bumps, earthen encrustation, tight flan, weight 2.024 g, maximum diameter 12.1 mm, die axis 225o, Samarian(?) mint, c. 140 - 37 B.C.; obverse double cornucopia, upright rod between, border of dots; reverse stylized palm tree between two blooming lily flowers, border of dots; zero sales of this type listed on Coin Archives in the last two decades; extremely rare; $1500.00 (1230.00)


Domitian, 13 September 81 - 18 September 96 A.D., Sebaste, Samaria, Judaea

|Roman| |Judea| |&| |Palestina|, |Domitian,| |13| |September| |81| |-| |18| |September| |96| |A.D.,| |Sebaste,| |Samaria,| |Judaea||AE| |23|
Sebaste was in the heart of the mountains of Samaria, a few miles northwest of Shechem. The city was called Samaria when it was a capital of the northern Kingdom of Israel in the 9th and 8th centuries B.C. According to Josephus, King Herod the Great renamed Sebastia in honor of emperor Augustus.
RP98118. Bronze AE 23, Sofaer p. 64, 8; RPC II 2227 (9 spec); SNG ANS 1072; BMC Palestine p. 78, 5; Rosenberger III 30, Choice aVF, nice style, attractive blue-green patina with highlighting earthen deposits, scratches, weight 9.992 g, maximum diameter 23.4 mm, die axis 0o, Sebaste (Sebastia, Israel) mint, Sep 81 - 82 A.D.; obverse IMP DOMITIANVS CAESAR, laureate head right; reverse CEBACTHNWN L ΘP (Sebaste, year 109), Zeus standing half right, nude to the waist, himation over arm and around legs, long scepter vertical in left hand, small Nike presenting a wreath in right hand; only one sale of this type recorded on Coin Archives for the last two decades; very rare; $350.00 (287.00)


Judean Kingdom, Mattathias Antigonus (Mattatayah), 40 - 37 B.C.

|Mattathias| |Antigonus|, |Judean| |Kingdom,| |Mattathias| |Antigonus| |(Mattatayah),| |40| |-| |37| |B.C.||eight| |prutot|
This coin was "professionally cleaned and conserved" in Israel. Although it is beautiful, to the educated eye, the patina does not look natural. It is "enhanced" or "applied." Enhanced or applied patinas are not tragic. Coins with enhanced or applied patinas often sell for very high prices. We prefer a beautiful natural patina, but mother nature does not always comply. At Forum Ancient Coins, if we believe a patina has been enhanced or applied, we will include that in the coin's description.
JD97652. Bronze eight prutot, Meshorer TJC 36; Hendin 1162; Sofaer 418 ff; SNG ANS 183 ff.; BMC Palestine p. 212, 2 ff.; SNG Cop 64; HGC 10 646 (S), VF, enhanced/applied desert patina, reverse a little off center and weakly struck, weight 13.727 g, maximum diameter 22.9 mm, die axis 0o, Jerusalem mint, 40 - 37 B.C.; obverse Paleo-Hebrew inscription: Mattatayah the High Priest and Council of the Jews, around and between the horns of a double cornucopia; reverse BACIΛEΩC ANTIΓONOY (of King Antigonus), ivy wreath tied at the top with ribbons hanging down; from an Israeli collection; scarce; $270.00 (221.40)


Elagabalus, 16 May 218 - 11 March 222 A.D., Neapolis, Samaria, Syria Palestina

|Roman| |Judea| |&| |Palestina|, |Elagabalus,| |16| |May| |218| |-| |11| |March| |222| |A.D.,| |Neapolis,| |Samaria,| |Syria| |Palestina||AE| |24|
Neapolis, Samaria, the biblical Shechemis, is now Nablus, Israel. It is the site of Joseph's Tomb and Jacob's well. Jesus spoke here to a Samaritan woman. Neapolis is home to about half the remaining worldwide Samaritan population of 600.
RP98112. Bronze AE 24, SNG ANS 1007 (same dies); cf. Rosenberger II 53; BMC Palestine p. 61, 103; Sofaer 109 - 110; Baramki AUB 36, nice VF, excellent portrait, attractive green patina with highlighting earthen deposits, some legend not fully struck, edge splits, weight 6.701 g, maximum diameter 24.1 mm, die axis 180o, Neapolis (Nablus, Israel) mint, 16 May 218 - 11 Mar 222 A.D.; obverse AVT K M AVP - ANTWNIN, laureate head right, slight drapery on left shoulder; reverse ΦΛ NE - CVP Π (Flavia Neapolis Syria Palestina), Tyche standing slightly left, head left, kalathos on head, rudder held by tiller in right hand, cornucopia in left hand; ex Menashe Landman Collection; rare; $225.00 (184.50)


Judaea, Valerius Gratus, Roman Prefect Under Tiberius, 15 - 26 A.D.

|Valerius| |Gratus|, |Judaea,| |Valerius| |Gratus,| |Roman| |Prefect| |Under| |Tiberius,| |15| |-| |26| |A.D.||prutah|
In 15 A.D., Valerius Gratus was appointed Prefect of the Roman province of Judea. "And, as a further attestation to what I say of the dilatory nature of Tiberius, I appeal to this his practice itself; for although he was emperor twenty-two years, he sent but two procurator to govern the nation of the Jews. Gratus, and his successor in the government, Pilate." - Josephus, antiquities VIII, VI, 5.
JD97707. Bronze prutah, Hendin 1332; BMC Palestine p. 251, 2; Meshorer AJC II, Supp. V. 6; Meshorer TJC 316; RPC I 4958, VF, green patina with highlighting earthen deposits, well centered, slightly uneven strike, a bit porous, weight 1.849 g, maximum diameter 15.6 mm, die axis 180o, Jerusalem mint, 15 - 16 A.D.; obverse KAI/CAP (Greek: caesar) in two lines within wreath; reverse TIB over LB (year 2 of Tiberius) within two crossed cornucopia; from an Israeli collection; very scarce; $205.00 SALE PRICE $185.00 ON RESERVE


Judean Kingdom, Herod the Great, 37 - 4 B.C.

|Herod| |the| |Great|, |Judean| |Kingdom,| |Herod| |the| |Great,| |37| |-| |4| |B.C.||2| |prutot|
Two prutot was equal to a Roman quadrans. -- Talmud Jerus., Kedushin 58d, written c. 200 A.D.
JD97694. Bronze 2 prutot, Meshorer TJC 48a; Hendin 1178; Sofaer Collection 20; RPC Online I 4905; HGC 10 654, gF, dark patina, porosity, highlighting earthen deposits, reverse off center, remnants of pre-strike casting sprues, weight 3.280 g, maximum diameter 19.3 mm, die axis 210o, Jerusalem mint, c. 30 B.C.; obverse HPΩ∆OY BAΣIΛEΩΣ (Greek: of King Herod), cross surrounded by closed diadem; reverse dish on tripod table, flanked by two upright palm branches; from an Israeli collection; $200.00 SALE PRICE $180.00 ON RESERVE


Judaea, Valerius Gratus, Roman Prefect Under Tiberius, 15 - 26 A.D.

|Valerius| |Gratus|, |Judaea,| |Valerius| |Gratus,| |Roman| |Prefect| |Under| |Tiberius,| |15| |-| |26| |A.D.||prutah|
The government of Gratus is chiefly remarkable for the frequent changes he made in the appointment of the high-priesthood. He deposed Ananus, and substituted Ismael, son of Fabi, then Eleazar, son of Arianus, then Simon, son of Camith, and lastly Joseph Caiaphas, the son-in-law of Ananus.
JD97708. Bronze prutah, Hendin 1334; Meshorer TJC 320; Sofaer 15; RPC I 4960; BMC Palestine p. 252, 10, pl. XXVIII, 9, aVF, red earth and green encrustations on a dark green patina, obverse off center, obverse edge beveled, remnants of pre-strike casting sprues, weight 1.807 g, maximum diameter 16.2 mm, die axis 0o, Jerusalem mint, 16 - 17 A.D.; obverse KAI/CAP (Greek: Caesar) in two lines within wreath; reverse TIBEPIOY (Greek: of Tiberius), two crossed cornucopia with caduceus between them, L - Γ (year 3 of Tiberius) across fields; from an Israeli collection; very scarce; $180.00 (147.60)


Philip II, July or August 247 - Late 249 A.D., Neapolis, Samaria, Syria Palestina

|Roman| |Judea| |&| |Palestina|, |Philip| |II,| |July| |or| |August| |247| |-| |Late| |249| |A.D.,| |Neapolis,| |Samaria,| |Syria| |Palestina||AE| |28|
Neapolis, Samaria, the biblical Shechemis, is now Nablus, Israel, the site of Joseph's Tomb and Jacob's well. Jesus spoke here to a Samaritan woman. The city was refounded as Flavia Neopolis in Syria Palestina after the Jewish Revolt. These coin types were used by archaeologists in the 1950's and 60's to locate the remains of the temple complex by comparing the profile of the mountain to the surrounding terrain.
RP98110. Bronze AE 28, Harl Neapolis 68 (A16/P65); RPC Online VIII U2411; BMC Palestine p. 69, 140; SNG Cop 20; Rosenberger III 101; Sofaer 134 corr. (Philip I), aVF, well centered, highlighting earthen deposits, grainy porous surfaces, weight 11.690 g, maximum diameter 27.8 mm, die axis 180o, Neapolis (Nablus, Israel) mint, Jul/Aug 247- Late 249 A.D.; obverse IMP C M IVL PHI-LIPPO P F AVG, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right, seen from behind; reverse COL SER-G NEAP-OL, Mt. Gerizim comprised of two masses separated by a ravine, arched colonnade below, stairway up the left mass to temple on peak, road up to altar on right peak, all supported by an eagle standing slightly left, head right, wings open; ex Menashe Landman Collection; scarce; $180.00 (147.60)


Judean Kingdom, Mattathias Antigonus (Mattatayah), 40 - 37 B.C.

|Mattathias| |Antigonus|, |Judean| |Kingdom,| |Mattathias| |Antigonus| |(Mattatayah),| |40| |-| |37| |B.C.||prutah|
Parthia took Judaea in 40 B.C. and made Mattathias Antigonus their vassal King. Antigonus bit off Hyrcanus II's ears to render him ineligible for High Priest and sent him to Babylon in chains. Herod fled to Rome but returned with Roman support and took Jerusalem in 37 B.C. Dio Cassius says Antigonus was crucified but most accounts say he was beheaded.

On this type the inscription is almost always retrograde. The Paleo-Hebrew inscription reads, in two retrograde lines, from left to right: MTT/(YH) (Mattatayah). On this coin the last two letter, the second line, is ligate (combined like a monogram). See Reading Judean Coins in NumisWiki.
JD97659. Bronze prutah, Meshorer TJC 40a, Sofaer Collection 444, HGC 10 649, Hendin 1164 var. (no ligature), SNG ANS 192 var. (same), BMC Palestine p. 219, 57 var. (same), F, highlighting earthen deposits, a little rough, reverse off center, weight 1.655 g, maximum diameter 12.6 mm, die axis 0o, Jerusalem mint, 40 - 37 B.C.; obverse retrograde Paleo-Hebrew inscription in two lines: MTT/(YH) = Mattatayah (last two letters ligate), surrounded by wreath and border of dots; reverse double cornucopia adorned with ribbons, barley ear between horns, border of dots; from an Israeli collection; rare variant; $160.00 (131.20)


Faustina Junior, Augusta, 146 - Winter 175/176 A.D., Neapolis, Samaria, Syria Palestina

|Roman| |Judea| |&| |Palestina|, |Faustina| |Junior,| |Augusta,| |146| |-| |Winter| |175/176| |A.D.,| |Neapolis,| |Samaria,| |Syria| |Palestina||AE| |19|
The image on the reverse resembles sculptures of Artemis, the Lady of Ephesus, including one at the Ephesus Archaeological Museum and another at the Vatican. The Ionians worshiped Artemis as a mother goddess, akin to the Phrygian Cybele. Her cult image was adorned with multiple rounded breast like protuberances on her chest. They have been variously interpreted as accessory breasts, eggs, grapes, acorns, or even bull testes. Excavation at the site of the Artemision in 1987/8 found a multitude of tear-shaped amber beads that once adorned the ancient wooden xoanon.Artemis
RP98113. Bronze AE 19, Sofaer 59 (same dies); BMC Palestine p. 56, 69; Rosenberger III 19; RPC IV Online T6349 (8 specs); SNG Cop 17; de Saulcy p. 253, 5; SNG ANS -, nice gF, near black patina with red earthen highlighting, high points flat not fully struck, weight 6.831 g, maximum diameter 19.1 mm, die axis 0o, Neapolis (Nablus, Israel) mint, struck under Antoninus Pius, 161 - 162 A.D.; obverse ΦAVCTEINAN CEBACTHN, draped bust right, hair in chingon; reverse ΦΛ NEACΠOΛE CYPIAC ΠAΛ-AI (Flavia Neapolis Syria Palestina, the last two letter in exergue and smaller), cult statue of Artemis Ephesia standing facing, wearing headdress, two stags at feet, hands resting on supports, ET - Ч (year 90) divided across field above arms; ex Menashe Landman Collection; rare; $160.00 (131.20)




  






REFERENCES

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Catalog current as of Thursday, January 20, 2022.
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