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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Judean & Biblical Coins||View Options:  |  |  |   

Judean and Biblical Coins


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)


Judaea, Bar Kochba Revolt, 132 - 135 A.D.

|Bar| |Kochba|, |Judaea,| |Bar| |Kochba| |Revolt,| |132| |-| |135| |A.D.||AE| |20|NEW
The Bar Kokhba revolt, led by Simon bar Kokhba, was the last of the major Jewish–Roman wars. The Roman army suffered heavy losses. It took six full legions, auxiliaries, and elements from as many as six more legions three years to crush the revolt. The Romans annihilated much of the Judean population. In 134, the they captured Jerusalem and Simon bar Kokhba was killed in 135. An altar to Jupiter was erected on the site of the Temple. The Jewish diaspora began as Hadrian barred Jews from Jerusalem and had survivors were dispersed across the Roman Empire. Many were sold into slavery. The Jewish people remained scattered without a homeland for close to two millennia.
JD98134. Bronze AE 20, Mildenberg p. 332, 156 (O4/R6); SNG ANS 586 (same dies); Meshorer AJC 80; Meshorer TJC p. 255, 301; Hendin 1439; Sofaer p. 283, 166, Choice gVF, well centered and struck, attractive applied desert patina, weight 5.293 g, maximum diameter 18.4 mm, die axis 180o, Jerusalem mint, undated, year 3, 134 - 135 A.D.; obverse Paleo-Hebrew inscription: "Jerusalem", seven-branched palm tree with two small bunches of dates, top of tree bent to the left; reverse Paleo-Hebrew inscription: 'For the Freedom of Jerusalem', bunch of grapes on vine with small leaf; extraordinary for the type!; scarce; $1300.00 (€1066.00)


Roman, Eastern Mediterranean, Glass Double |Balsamarium (Cosmetic Tube), 4th Century A.D.

|Glass| |Antiquities|, |Roman,| |Eastern| |Mediterranean,| |Glass| |Double| ||Balsamarium| |(Cosmetic| |Tube),| |4th| |Century| |A.D.|
This type was used to store eye makeup. One tube would have held kohl, a black paste made with powdered galena. The other tube would have held another color, perhaps made with an ochre clay (for red or brown) or powdered malachite (for green or blue).
AG20799. cf. Yale Gallery 323, Oppenländer 680a, ROM Glass 458, Corning II 749, Choice, complete and intact, weathering and iridescence, double balsamarium, free-blown thick heavy pale translucent blue-green glass, 20.0 cm (8") tall, two tubes joined side-by-side and sharing a thick globular bottom, applied top "basket" handle attached to applied loop on each side; from the Robert H. Cornell collection, former dealer in Eastern antiquities for 40 years; $890.00 (€729.80)


Judaea, Bar Kochba Revolt, 132 - 135 A.D.

|Bar| |Kochba|, |Judaea,| |Bar| |Kochba| |Revolt,| |132| |-| |135| |A.D.||AE| |25|NEW
The Bar Kokhba revolt, led by Simon bar Kokhba, was the last of the major Jewish–Roman wars. The Roman army suffered heavy losses. It took six full legions, auxiliaries, and elements from as many as six more legions three years to crush the revolt. The Romans annihilated much of the Judean population. In 134, the they captured Jerusalem and Simon bar Kokhba was killed in 135. Legio VI Ferrata rebuilt the legionary fortress in Jerusalem and constructed a Roman temple at Golgotha. An altar to Jupiter was erected on the site of the Temple. The Jewish diaspora began as Hadrian barred Jews from Jerusalem and had survivors of the massacre dispersed across the Roman Empire. Many were sold into slavery. The Jewish people remained scattered without a homeland for close to two millennia.
JD98133. Bronze AE 25, Mildenberg p. 310, 54 (O3/R18), Sofaer 70; Meshorer TJC p. 250, 260a; Hendin 1408, Nice gVF, attractive green patina, applied red earthen highlighting, reverse slightly off center, weight 13.55 g, maximum diameter 24.9 mm, die axis 180o, year 2, 133 - 134 A.D.; obverse Paleo-Hebrew inscription: "S-M/A" (abbreviating Simon), seven branched palm tree with two bunches of dates; reverse Paleo-Hebrew inscription: "Year 2 of the freedom of Israel", vine leaf on tendril; $800.00 (€656.00)


Roman-Byzantine, Syro-Palestinian, Glass Dropper Flask, c. Late 1st - Early 5th Century A.D.

|Glass| |Antiquities|, |Roman-Byzantine,| |Syro-Palestinian,| |Glass| |Dropper| |Flask,| |c.| |Late| |1st| |-| |Early| |5th| |Century| |A.D.|
Thick enamel-like weathering, as seen on this piece, is common on glass found in the Levant and this piece is certainly from the Levante. This flask is, however, a bit of a mystery. There is nothing very similar in the large library of ancient and medieval glass references held by Forum. It resembles an aryballos, but lacks the handles which define that type. It probably was used like an aryballos, to store and dispense scented oil which was rubbed on the skin and then scraped off to clean the body. The date is uncertain. Weathering obscures the original color, making another mystery, but the only other a similar flasks we know are described as opaque black glass.
AG20822. Isings -, et al. -; apparently unpublished but two similar pieces are known from the market (priced $2,500 - $3,000!), Choice, complete and intact, thick tan and brown enamel-like weathering, dropper flask, free-blown, amber(?) glass, 12.0 cm (4 3/4") tall, 8.5 cm maximum diameter, piriform body, very short narrow neck, broad flat folded in rim, round bottom with large pontil mark, not designed to stand on its own, attractive clear plexiglass three prong stand included; from the collection of Alex G. Malloy, former dealer in antiquities for 40 years; very rare form; $540.00 (€442.80)


Marcus Aurelius, 7 March 161 - 17 March 180 A.D., Gaza, Judaea, Syria Palaestina

|Roman| |Judea| |&| |Palestina|, |Marcus| |Aurelius,| |7| |March| |161| |-| |17| |March| |180| |A.D.,| |Gaza,| |Judaea,| |Syria| |Palaestina||AE| |20|
Throughout the Roman period, Gaza was a prosperous city and received grants and attention from several emperors. A 500-member senate governed Gaza, and a diverse variety of Philistines, Greeks, Romans, Canaanites, Phoenicians, Jews, Egyptians, Persians and Bedouin populated the city. Gaza's mint stamped out coins adorned with the busts of gods, emperors, and empresses. In 66 A.D., Gaza was burned down by Jews during their rebellion against the Romans. However, it remained an important city; even more so after the destruction of Jerusalem by Titus the following year.
RP98106. Bronze AE 20, Sofaer pl. 110, 118 (same rev. die); RPC IV.3 T9072 (2 spec., same obv. die, Marnas below date on plate); Rosenberger II 95; BMC Palestine p. 155, 89, Choice gVF, part of ethnic and date unstruck, attractive enhanced desert patina, weight 6.351 g, maximum diameter 19.5 mm, die axis 0o, Gaza mint, 163 - 164 A.D.; obverse ANTWNEN-OC CEB (starting from the upper right, letters OC CEB on the left all reversed), laureate, draped bust right; reverse ΓAZA (upward on left), ∆KC (year 224, upward on right), Tyche wearing standing facing, looking left, kalathos on head, long grounded scepter vertical in right hand, cornucopia in left, heifer standing left at feet on left, Marnas symbol upper right above date; ex Menashe Landman Collection; rare; $450.00 (€369.00)


Gallienus, August 253 - September 268 A.D., Akko-Ptolemais, Phoenicia

|Phoenicia|, |Gallienus,| |August| |253| |-| |September| |268| |A.D.,| |Akko-Ptolemais,| |Phoenicia||AE| |27|
Akko was refounded as a Roman colony, colonia Ptolemais, probably in 53 or 54 A.D., the last year of Claudius' reign or the first year of Nero’s. Akko was one of hundreds of cities in the Roman provinces that minted civic coins. In the mid 3rd century cities stopped producing their own coins. The last city coins were struck under Gallienus, and Akko was among the very last cities to strike its own coins.
JD96394. Bronze AE 27, BMC Phoenicia p. 138, 50 var. (obv. leg.); Rosenberger 86 var. (same); Kadman Akko 256 var. (same, draped); Sofaer 293 ff. (draped, etc.); SNG Cop -, aF, rough green patina, light earthen deposits, a little off center, weight 13.158 g, maximum diameter 26.5 mm, die axis 0o, Ake Ptolemais (Acre, Israel) mint, 253 - 268 A.D.; obverse IMP CAES LIC GALLIEN[VS AVG], laureate head right; reverse COL P-TOL, portable shrine containing a statue of Zeus Heliopolites, shrine consisting of a frame within two pillars supporting a architrave with hatched decoration, two carrying poles projecting from bottom, figure of deity within standing facing on rock or base, wearing short chiton, double axe in right hand, harpe(?) in left hand; an unpublished variant of a very rare type; from the J. Berlin Caesarea Collection, 1977 surface find at Caesarea Maritima, Israel; $390.00 (€319.80)


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

|Herod| |the| |Great|, |Judean| |Kingdom,| |Herod| |the| |Great,| |37| |-| |4| |B.C.||prutah|NEW
Josephus writes that Herod the Great (father of Archelaus) was in Jericho at the time of his death. Just prior to this final trip to Jericho, Herod had placed a golden eagle over the Temple entrance. Perceived as blasphemous, protesters chopped down the eagle with axes. Two teachers and approximately 40 youths were arrested for this act and immolated.
JD97696. Bronze prutah, Hendin 1185; Meshorer TJC 55; Sofaer p. 259, 50; HGC 10 666 (S), VF, tight ragged flan, uneven strike, enhanced desert patina, weight 0.834 g, maximum diameter 12.9 mm, Jerusalem mint, c. 27 - 24 B.C.; obverse HPΩ∆OY BACIΛEΩΣ (Greek: of King Herod), tripod table with curved legs, shallow bowl or plate upon it; reverse crossed palm fronds in a circle; very scarce; $350.00 (€287.00)


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.||prutah|NEW
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.

Although the details are obscure, this coin appears to be Hendin 1165. Hendin 1165 has a correct Mattatayah inscription, not a retrograde inscription, which Hendin lists as RRR and without the usual price guide. Hendin 1164, which is the same types but with a retrograde Mattatayah inscription, is not rare. Look for yourself and see if you agree with our attribution. Meshorer TJC lists three different retrograde variations, only one with a normal inscription. The Sofaer collection includes eight retrograde specimens but none with a normal inscription. SNG ANS lists three retrograde, zero normal. BMC two retrograde, zero normal. There are no sales of this normal inscription variant on Coin Archives (one coin is misdescribed as this type). See Reading Judean Coins in NumisWiki.
JD97661. Bronze prutah, Hendin 1165 (RRR), Meshorer TJC 39, BMC Palestine -, SNG ANS -, SNG Cop -, aF, a little rough, remnants of pre-strike casting seam and sprues, weight 1.647 g, maximum diameter 13.6 mm, die axis 300o, Jerusalem mint, 40 - 37 B.C.; obverse Paleo-Hebrew inscription in two lines: Mattatayah, surrounded by wreath and border of dots; reverse double cornucopia adorned with ribbons, barley ear between horns, border of dots; extremely rare; $300.00 (€246.00)




  







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