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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Themes & Provenance| ▸ |Types| ▸ |Music||View Options:  |  |  | 

Music on Ancient Coins
Judaea, Bar Kochba Revolt, 132 - 135 A.D.

|Bar| |Kochba|, |Judaea,| |Bar| |Kochba| |Revolt,| |132| |-| |135| |A.D.||AE| |23|
In 134, the Romans captured Jerusalem. Simon bar Kokhba was killed in 135, at Betar, a fortress where he had taken refuge. Jerusalem, largely destroyed, was renamed Colonia Aelia Capitolina. Legio VI Ferrata rebuilt the legionary fortress in the city and constructed a Roman temple at Golgotha. An altar to Jupiter was erected on the site of the Temple in Jerusalem. Although, resistance continued in Galilee, the Jewish diaspora began as Emperor Hadrian barred Jews from Jerusalem and had survivors of the massacre dispersed across the Roman Empire. Many were sold into slavery. The Jews remained scattered without a homeland for close to two millennia.

Obverse legend:      Reverse legend:
JD99309. Bronze AE 23, Mildenberg 31 (O2/R10); SNG ANS 580; BMC Palestine p. 3, 93; Meshorer TJC 297a; Sofaer p. 283, & pl. 236, 16; Hendin 6463 (S), VF, well centered on a tight flan, thin blue-green patina, earthen deposits on reverse, light marks, weight 6.840 g, maximum diameter 23.4 mm, die axis 0o, undated, year 3, 134 - 135 A.D.; obverse Paleo-Hebrew inscription counterclockwise from lower right: for the freedom of Jerusalem, upright palm branch within laurel wreath, wreath with four groups of three leaves on each side, a medallion at the top and ribbon ties at the bottom; reverse Paleo-Hebrew inscription counterclockwise from lower right: Shimon, kithara-lyre with a long soundbox, three strings, and horn-like protrusions; from a private collector in New Jersey; scarce; $900.00 SALE PRICE $810.00


Kingdom of Bithynia, Prusias II Kynegos, 185 - 149 B.C.

|Kingdom| |of| |Bithynia|, |Kingdom| |of| |Bithynia,| |Prusias| |II| |Kynegos,| |185| |-| |149| |B.C.||AE| |20|
Prusias II, son of Prusias I, inherited his father's name but not his character. He first joined with Eumenes of Pergamon in war against Pontus, but later turned on Pergamon and invaded. He was defeated and Pergamon demanded heavy reparations. Prusias sent his son Nicomedes II to Rome to ask for aid in reducing the payments. When Nicomedes revolted, Prusias II was murdered in the temple of Zeus at Nikomedia.

Like satyrs, centaurs were notorious for being wild, lusty, overly indulgent drinkers and carousers, violent when intoxicated, and generally uncultured delinquents. Chiron, by contrast, was intelligent, civilized and kind. He was not related directly to the other centaurs. He was the son of the Titan Cronus and the Oceanid Philyr. The other centaurs were spawned by the cloud Nephele on the slopes of Mount Pelion. Apollo taught the young Chiron the art of medicine, herbs, music, archery, hunting, gymnastics and prophecy, and made him rise above his beastly nature. He became a renowned teacher who mentored many of the greatest heroes of myth including the Argonauts Jason and Peleus, the physician Asklepios, and Achilles of Troy.
GB99271. Bronze AE 20, SNG Cop 639; BMC Pontus p. 211, 9; Rec Gen I p. 226, 26; HGC 7 629; SGCV II 7266, aVF, dark patina, spots of corrosion, reverse edge beveled, weight 5.240 g, maximum diameter 20.3 mm, die axis 0o, Nikomedia (Izmit, Turkey) mint, c. 180 - 150 B.C.; obverse head of young Dionysos right, wreathed with ivy; reverse centaur Chiron standing right, playing lyre, his animal skin cloak flying behind, monogram inner right under raised foreleg, BAΣIΛEΩΣ downward on right, ΠPOYΣIOY downward on left; $160.00 SALE PRICE $144.00


Titus, 24 June 79 - 13 September 81 A.D., Germe ad Rhyndakos, Mysia

|Other| |Mysia|, |Titus,| |24| |June| |79| |-| |13| |September| |81| |A.D.,| |Germe| |ad| |Rhyndakos,| |Mysia||AE| |22|
There were two towns named Germe: Germe ad Rhyndakos near Pergamum in Mysia and Germa ad Caicus in Lydia. BMC and SNG Cop include the city under Lydia, but recent scholarship indicates only Germe ad Rhyndakos in Mysia struck coins.
RP97866. Bronze AE 22, Ehling 35 - 46; BMC Lydia p. 82, 14; RPC Online II 926 (15 spec); SNG Righetti 710; SNG Lewis 1356; Lindgren III 460; SNG Cop -, aVF, green patina with some chipping, scratches, oval flan, weight 3.408 g, maximum diameter 22.0 mm, die axis 0o, Germe mint, 24 Jun 79 - 13 Sep 81 A.D.; obverse AYTO T KAI CEBAC, laureate head right; reverse ΓEPMHNWN, Apollo standing facing, head left, patera in right hand, lyre in left hand; scarce; $90.00 SALE PRICE $81.00


Byzantine Empire, Romanus I and Christopher, 921 - 931 A.D.

|Romanus| |I|, |Byzantine| |Empire,| |Romanus| |I| |and| |Christopher,| |921| |-| |931| |A.D.||solidus|
The throne depicted on the obverse is also depicted in the Narthex Mosaic, at Hagia Sophia, Constantinople, from the late 9th or early 10th century A.D.
SH31260. Gold solidus, DOC III-2 7; Berk 276; SBCV 1745, gVF, weight 4.196 g, maximum diameter 20.2 mm, die axis 180o, Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) mint, 921 - 931 A.D.; obverse +IhS XPS REX REGNANTInm, Christ enthroned facing, wearing nimbus cruciger, pallium, and colobium and raising right in benediction, holding gospels in left hand, the throne has a lyre back and is ornamented with pearls; reverse ROman Et XRISTOFO AYGGb (or similar), facing busts of Romanus I, with short beard on left, and Christopher (his son-in-law), beardless on right, Romanus wears loros, Christopher wears chlamys, and they hold a long patriarchal cross between them; SOLD


Mytilene, Lesbos, c. 412 - 378 B.C.

|Lesbos|, |Mytilene,| |Lesbos,| |c.| |412| |-| |378| |B.C.||hekte|
Mytilene was famous in ancient times for its great output of electrum coins struck from the late 6th through mid - 4th centuries B.C. The usual denomination was the hekte (1/6th stater). Warwick Wroth noted in the British Museum Catalog, "The Sixths of [this Lesbos electrum series] form one of the most beautiful coin-series of the ancient world. This will be evident from a glance."
SH95224. Electrum hekte, Bodenstedt 79, SNGvA 1731, BMC Troas 62; Pozzi 2324, Trait II 2183, HGC 6 1005, VF, fine style, toned, scuff on cheek, marks, weight 2.551 g, maximum diameter 11.0 mm, die axis 180o, Mytilene mint, c. 412 - 378 B.C.; obverse female (muse?) head right, hair in sakkos, wearing a pendant earring and necklace; reverse Kithara with seven strings in linear square, within incuse square; ex Forum (2016), ex Frank L. Kovacs; SOLD







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