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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Judean & Biblical Coins| ▸ |Biblical Coins| ▸ |Cities in the Bible||View Options:  |  |  |   

Cities in the Bible

The coins below were minted by cities that are mentioned in the bible. Click here to read about the travels of Paul.

Persian Empire, Samaria, c. 375 - 333 B.C.

|Persian| |Rule|, |Persian| |Empire,| |Samaria,| |c.| |375| |-| |333| |B.C.||obol|
The obverse was copied from a very rare Cilician obol (SNG Levante 201). The very interesting reverse appears to depict five coins with owl reverses, presumably Athenian tetradrachms. In "Coinage for Redeeming the Firstborn: An Ancient and Modern Jewish Ritual" in The Celator|, December 2002, pp. 14 - 22, Ronn Berrol discusses a possible connection to the pidyon haben (click the article title to read it online). The pidyon haben is a mitzvah through which a Jewish firstborn son is "redeemed" from predestination to serve as a priest by giving five silver coins to a Kohen.
GA96462. Silver obol, Meshorer-Qedar 141, Sofaer Collection 185, HGC 10 418 (R2), VF, typical crude uneven weak strike, weight 0.604 g, maximum diameter 9.3 mm, Samaria (10 km NW of Nablus, West Bank) mint, middle Levantine' series, c. 375 - 333 B.C.; obverse triform bearded male head, wearing round cap; reverse five discs each with owl standing right and head facing (Athenian coins?), piled up with one in center on top of four around in a cruciform arrangement; ex Leu Numismatik auction 12 (30 May 2020), lot 657; ex Canaan Collection; very rare; $650.00 SALE |PRICE| $520.00


Persian Empire, Samaria, c. 375 - 333 B.C.

|Judaea| |&| |Palestine|, |Persian| |Empire,| |Samaria,| |c.| |375| |-| |333| |B.C.||obol|
Meshorer-Qedar lists Athena on the obverse, but on the three specimens known to FORVM it is clear that Athena is on the reverse. The types copy contemporary Cypriot stater types from Kition (obverse) and Lapethus (reverse).
GS95808. Silver obol, Meshorer-Qedar 102, cf. Sofaer Collection 63 (hemiobol), HGC 10 -, VF, well centered, toned, struck with worn dies (as are all specimens of this type known to FORVM), weight 0.65 g, maximum diameter 8 mm, die axis 10o, Samaria (10 km NW of Nablus, West Bank) mint, c. 375 - 333 B.C.; obverse lion right atop and attacking a stag fallen right, (Aramaic 'n', abbreviating Samarian) above; reverse head of Athena facing, wearing crested Attic helmet; ex Leu Numismatik web auction 11 (22 Feb 2020), lot 1128; ex Canaan Collection; only three sale of this type recorded on Coin Archives for the last two decades (and one of the three is this coin); very rare; $500.00 SALE |PRICE| $450.00


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

|Herod| |the| |Great|, |Judean| |Kingdom,| |Herod| |the| |Great,| |37| |-| |4| |B.C.||2| |prutot|
Herod the Great, a Roman client king of Judea, has been described as a madman who murdered his own family and a great many rabbis, prepared to commit any crime in order to gratify his unbounded ambition, and as the greatest builder in Jewish history. He is known for his colossal building projects throughout Judea, including his expansion of the Second Temple in Jerusalem, the construction of the port at Caesarea Maritima, the fortress at Masada and Herodium. Vital details of his life are recorded in the works of the 1st century Roman-Jewish historian Josephus.
JD97068. Bronze 2 prutot, Meshorer TJC 48a; Hendin 1178; Sofaer Collection pl. 207, 20; HGC 10 654, Choice VF, green patina with earthen highlighting, well centered, weight 3.494 g, maximum diameter 18.8 mm, die axis 0o, Jerusalem mint, c. 30 B.C.; obverse HPΩ∆OY BAΣIΛEΩC (of King Herod), cross surrounded by a closed diadem; reverse dish on a tripod table, flanked by upright palm branches; scarce; $380.00 SALE |PRICE| $342.00 ON RESERVE


Persian Empire, Samaria, c. 375 - 333 B.C.

|Persian| |Rule|, |Persian| |Empire,| |Samaria,| |c.| |375| |-| |333| |B.C.||obol|
Samaria was the capital of the northern Kingdom of Israel in the 9th - 8th centuries B.C. The ruins are located in the Samaria mountains of Palestine, almost 10 km to the northwest of Nablus. The Assyrians took the city and the northern kingdom in 722/721 B.C. The city did not recover until the Persian period, the mid 5th century. The tensions between the ruling Sanballat family and Jerusalem under the governorship of Nehemiah are documented in the Bible (Ezra 4:10, Neh 4:78). Samaria became Hellenistic in 332 B.C. Thousands of Macedonian soldiers were settled there following a revolt. The Judaean king John Hyrcanus destroyed the city in 108 B.C., but it was resettled under Alexander Jannaeus. In 63 B.C. Samaria was annexed to the Roman province of Syria.
GS95809. Silver obol, Sofaer 57; cf. Meshorer-Qedar 95 (similar, plated); HGC 10 -, VF, tone, die breaks, rough, weight 0.511 g, maximum diameter 9.6 mm, die axis 270o, Samaria (10 km NW of Nablus, West Bank) mint, c. 375 - 333 B.C.; obverse laureate male (Apollo?) head right, dot border; reverse female head left, wearing sphendone, Aramaic ('myrn' - Samarian) behind; ex Leu web auction 11 (22 Feb 2020), lot 1126; from the Canaan Collection; very rare; $280.00 SALE |PRICE| $252.00


Neapolis, Macedonia, c. 525 - 450 B.C.

|Other| |Macedonia|, |Neapolis,| |Macedonia,| |c.| |525| |-| |450| |B.C.||obol|
Neapolis, Macedonia (Kavala, Greece today), was founded by settlers from Thasos near the end of the 7th century B.C., to exploit the rich gold and silver mines of the area. At the end of the 6th century B.C. Neapolis ("new city" in Greek) claimed its independence from Thasos and struck its own silver coins with the head of Gorgon. A member of the Athenian League, Neapolis was besieged by the allied armies of the Spartans and the Thasians in 411 B.C., during the Peloponnesian War, but remained faithful to Athens. The Apostle Paul landed at Neapolis on his second and third missionary journeys.
GA96103. Silver obol, SNG ANS 423 - 424; BMC Macedonia p. 84, 13; HGC 3-1 585; SNG Cop -; Rosen -, gVF, slightly grainy, slightly porous, weight 0.632 g, maximum diameter 10.5 mm, Macedonia, Neapolis mint, c. 525 - 450 B.C.; obverse facing head of Medusa (gorgoneion), tongue protruding; reverse quadripartite incuse square; ex Roma e-sale 43 (3 Feb 2018), lot 95; $125.00 SALE |PRICE| $112.00


Lucius Verus, 7 March 161 - February 169 A.D., Antioch, Syria

|Roman| |Syria|, |Lucius| |Verus,| |7| |March| |161| |-| |February| |169| |A.D.,| |Antioch,| |Syria||semis|
In 162, Marcus Aurelius sent Lucius Verus to lead the war against Parthia. Lucius spent most of the campaign in Antioch, though he wintered at Laodicea and summered at Daphne, a resort just outside Antioch. Critics derided Lucius' luxurious lifestyle. He took up a mistress, enjoyed the company of actors and would "dice the whole night through." The Syrian army was said to spend more time in Antioch's open-air cafs than with their units. The war was, nevertheless, a success. Despite Lucius' minimal personal participation, he was awarded the titles Armeniacus, Medicus and Parthicus Maximus and a triumph upon his return to Rome in 166.
RY93576. Bronze semis, RPC Online IV.3 T7149, McAlee 610, VF, black patina, highlighting earthen deposits, obverse a little off center, weight 7.575 g, maximum diameter 18.9 mm, die axis 180o, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, 161 - 169 A.D.; obverse AVT K Λ AVPHΛ OVHPOC CEB, radiate head right; reverse SC, uncertain Greek numeral-letter below, all within wreath; ex Roma Numismatics e-sale 47 (28 Jun 2018), lot 483; $110.00 SALE |PRICE| $99.00


Elagabalus, 16 May 218 - 11 March 222 A.D., Antioch, Seleukis and Pieria, Syria

|Roman| |Syria|, |Elagabalus,| |16| |May| |218| |-| |11| |March| |222| |A.D.,| |Antioch,| |Seleukis| |and| |Pieria,| |Syria||as|
The Battle of Antioch. After Macrinus foolishly cut legionary pay, Legio III Gallica hailed Elagabalus as emperor on 16 May 218. Macrinus sent cavalry but they too joined Elagabalus. Macrinus finally abandoned his pay cut and paid a bonus, but it was too late. Legion II Parthica defected. General Gannys, the commander of Elagabalus' forces, decisively defeated Macrinus was just outside Antioch on 8 June 218. Macrinus shaved off his hair and beard and fled, disguised as a member of the military police. He was recognized by a centurion at Chalcedon on the Bosporus, taken back to Antioch and executed.
RY93580. Bronze as, McAlee 792/1 (very rare), Waage 595, SNG Cop -, BMC Galatia -, VF, nice black with red earthen highlighting desert patina, porosity, tight flan cutting off much of obverse legend, weight 4.474 g, maximum diameter 17.3 mm, die axis 0o, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, 16 May 218 - 11 Mar 222 A.D.; obverse AVT K M AV ANTONINOC C, laureate head right; reverse ram advancing right, head left, above leg and thigh of animal (sacrifice); small ∆E over larger S - C above ram; all within laurel wreath fastened at the top with a star; ex Roma Numismatics e-sale 47 (28 Jun 2018), lot 506; very rare; $100.00 SALE |PRICE| $90.00


Herod Archelaus, Ethnarch of Samaria, Judea, and Idumea, 4 B.C. - 6 A.D.

|Herod| |Archelaus|, |Herod| |Archelaus,| |Ethnarch| |of| |Samaria,| |Judea,| |and| |Idumea,| |4| |B.C.| |-| |6| |A.D.||prutah|
Grapes, the vine and wine were an important part of the ancient economy and ritual. Grapes were brought to the Temple as offerings of the first-fruits and wine was offered upon the altar. The vine and grapes decorated the sacred vessels in the sanctuary and a golden vine with clusters of grapes stood at its entrance.
JD97061. Bronze prutah, Hendin 1196, Meshorer TJC 73, SGICV 5539, RPC I 4917, VF, dark green patina with highlighting red earthen fill, tight flan, obverse a little of center, reverse edge beveled, weight 2.406 g, maximum diameter 16.7 mm, die axis 90o, Jerusalem mint, 4 B.C. - 6 A.D.; obverse HPω∆OY (of Herod), bunch of grapes, with leaf on left; reverse EΘNOPXOY (Ethnarch), tall helmet with crest and neck straps viewed from the front, small caduceus in lower left field; $100.00 SALE |PRICE| $90.00 ON RESERVE


Macrinus, 11 April 217 - 8 June 218 A.D., Antioch, Seleucis and Pieria, Syria

|Roman| |Syria|, |Macrinus,| |11| |April| |217| |-| |8| |June| |218| |A.D.,| |Antioch,| |Seleucis| |and| |Pieria,| |Syria||as|
The Battle of Antioch. After Macrinus foolishly cut legionary pay, Legio III Gallica hailed Elagabalus as emperor on 16 May 218. Macrinus sent cavalry but they too joined Elagabalus. Macrinus finally abandoned his pay cut and paid a bonus, but it was too late. Legion II Parthica defected. General Gannys, the commander of Elagabalus' forces, decisively defeated Macrinus was just outside Antioch on 8 June 218. Macrinus shaved off his hair and beard and fled, disguised as a member of the military police. He was recognized by a centurion at Chalcedon on the Bosporus, taken back to Antioch and executed.
RY93578. Bronze as, McAlee 743 (very rare), MacDonald Hunter III 242, aVF, desert patina with red earthen highlighting, porous, tight flan, weight 4.183 g, maximum diameter 19.6 mm, die axis 0o, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, Mid May - 8 Jun 218 A.D.; obverse AVT K M O C MAKPINOC CE, laureate head right, bare shoulder seen from behind; reverse AVT K M O ∆ ANTONINOC, laureate head right, bare shoulder seen from behind, S - C divided low across field; ex Roma Numismatics e-auction 47 (28 Jun 2018), lot 498; very rare; $95.00 SALE |PRICE| $85.00


Macrinus, 11 April 217 - 8 June 218 A.D. Antioch, Seleucis and Pieria

|Roman| |Syria|, |Macrinus,| |11| |April| |217| |-| |8| |June| |218| |A.D.| |Antioch,| |Seleucis| |and| |Pieria||AE| |18|
The Battle of Antioch. After Macrinus foolishly cut legionary pay, Legio III Gallica hailed Elagabalus as emperor on 16 May 218. Macrinus sent cavalry but they too joined Elagabalus. Macrinus finally abandoned his pay cut and paid a bonus, but it was too late. Legion II Parthica defected. General Gannys, the commander of Elagabalus' forces, decisively defeated Macrinus was just outside Antioch on 8 June 218. Macrinus shaved off his hair and beard and fled, disguised as a member of the military police. He was recognized by a centurion at Chalcedon on the Bosporus, taken back to Antioch and executed.
RY93581. Bronze AE 18, McAlee 728 (extremely rare), BMC Galatia -, SNG Cop -, VF, nice portrait, attractive desert patina, tight flan cutting of part of obverse legend, spot of minor corrosion on the reverse, weight 5.031 g, maximum diameter 18.0 mm, die axis 0o, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, 11 Apr 217 - 8 Jun 218 A.D.; obverse AVT KAI M O CE MAKPINOC CE, laureate and cuirassed bust right, seen from front; reverse SC, ∆ above, E below, all within laurel wreath with ten bunches of leaves and closed at the top with a star; ex Roma Numismatics e-sale 47 (28 Jun 2018), lot 497; very rare; $90.00 SALE |PRICE| $81.00




  



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