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Hyrcanus II was high priest during the rule of his mother, Salome Alexandra, 76 - 67 B.C. and was made king upon her death. Within a year he was deposed by his younger brother, Aristobulus II. Hyrcanus appealed to Nabataea and then to Rome for assistance. Pompey the Great took Jerusalem, inflicting heavy casualties (and entering, thus defiling, the Holy of Holies), and restored Hyrcanus. Hyrcanus was, however, denied the title of King and was a puppet of Rome. He was captured by the Parthians in 40 B.C. and was executed by Herod ten years later.
|Meshorer notes for this type, "letter shapes are bizarre and the lines of script are not evenly followed...While on most specimens, the inscription is complete, some time must be devoted to locating all of the characters." This "barbaric" inscription style is unique to coins of John Hyrcanus II. The Paleo-Hebrew inscription on this coin reads, from right to left, as follows: YNTN (Yonatan) H (the) / KHN (Priest) GD/L ( high) W (and) (HH)BR (council) / YHD[YM] (Jews). See Reading Judean Coins in NumisWiki.|