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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Roman Coins| ▸ |Roman Provincial| ▸ |Roman Syria||View Options:  |  |  |   

Roman Provincial Coins of Syria

In 63 B.C., Syria was incorporated into the Roman Republic as a province following the success of Pompey the Great against the Parthians. In 135 A.D., after the defeat of the Bar Kokhba Revolt, Roman Syria and Judaea were merged into the province Syria Palaestina. The province Coele-Syria was split from Syria Palaestina in 193. Syria became part of the splinter Palmyrene Empire for a brief period from 260 to 272, when it was restored to Roman central authority. In the 3rd century, with the Severan dynasty, Syrians even achieved imperial power.

Augustus, 16 January 27 B.C. - 19 August 14 A.D., Uncertain Mint, Anatolia or Syria

|Roman| |Asia|, |Augustus,| |16| |January| |27| |B.C.| |-| |19| |August| |14| |A.D.,| |Uncertain| |Mint,| |Anatolia| |or| |Syria||AE| |27|
The mint, the quaestor who struck this type, and even the identity of the person in the portrait remain uncertain. The type has previously been attributed to Macedonia and the portrait identified as Brutus (Friedlander) or Caesar (Grant). David Sear notes the type has never been found in Macedonia. Finds point to Syria or Anatolia. It is possible that the type was issued, with his own portrait, by Sosius, a general under Marc Antony who was quaestor in 39 B.C. Much more likely, however, the portrait is of Augustus.
RP96854. Bronze AE 27, RPC I 5409; Sear CRI 957 (Syria); AMNG II 29 (Pella), gF, dark green patina, flan adjustment marks, strike a little weak, edge crack, weight 14.989 g, maximum diameter 26.7 mm, die axis 0o, uncertain Anatolian or Syrian mint, c. 39 B.C.(?); obverse bare head right; reverse hasta (spear), sella quaestoria (quaestor's seat of office), and fiscus (imperial treasury), Q (quaestor) below; previously a rare type but recent finds have made it easier to acquire; from a Florida collector, ex Trusted Coins; $400.00 (€328.00)
 


Seleukid Kingdom, Philip I Philadelphos, c. 94 - 83 or 75 B.C.

|Seleucid| |Kingdom|, |Seleukid| |Kingdom,| |Philip| |I| |Philadelphos,| |c.| |94| |-| |83| |or| |75| |B.C.||tetradrachm|
There are many control symbol variations for Philip I tetradrachms, some are identified as lifetime issues, some as posthumous, and some as imitatives, including posthumous imitatives struck by the Romans. None of the published variations list this ∆I monogram exergue control symbol, without any other symbols outer left or inner left. Houghton-Lorber II 2464 is most similar, with this type of portrait and no controls left, but only N, Π and T exergue controls are listed. Also, this coin was part of a Leu auction lot that included other specimens of Houghton-Lorber II 2464 all in very similar condition, indicating the coins may have been found together.
GY97102. Silver tetradrachm, Unpublished control monogram; Houghton-Lorber II 2464 var. (control); SNG Spaer 2817 var. (control); HGC 9 1320 (R1); BMC Seleucid -, aVF, field cracks, weight 15.244 g, maximum diameter 25.6 mm, uncertain (Antioch?) mint, c. 88/7 - 83/75 B.C.; obverse diademed head of Philip I Philadelphos right, bulging eye, pouting lips, pronounced aquiline nose, fillet border; reverse BAΣIΛEΩΣ ΦIΛIΠΠOY EΠIΦANOYΣ ΦIΛA∆EΛΦOY, Zeus seated left on high-backed throne, nude to the waist, himation around hips and legs, Nike presenting wreath in right hand, long scepter vertical behind in left, no controls left, below throne, ∆I monogram (control) in exergue, all within laurel wreath; ex Leu Numismatik web auction 13 (16 Aug 2020), lot 2121 (part of); unpublished control variant of a rare type; $250.00 (€205.00)
 


Palmyra, Palmyrene, Syria, c. 150 - 225 A.D.

|Other| |Syria|, |Palmyra,| |Palmyrene,| |Syria,| |c.| |150| |-| |225| |A.D.||AE| |12|
Palmyra, a city in a large oasis in the Syrian Desert, 215 km northeast of Damascus, was the vital silk road caravan stop known as "the Bride of the Desert." Atargatis was the chief goddess of northern Syria, primarily a fertility goddess, but, she was also responsible for the protection and well-being of the people. Her chief sanctuary was at Hierapolis, modern Manbij, northeast of Aleppo, Syria. The Romans called her Dea Syria.
GB95894. Bronze AE 12, SNG Munchen 519; BMC Galatia p. 149, 2; Krzyzanowska Monnayage IV; SNG Cop -, gF, dark patina, earthen deposits, weight 1.663 g, maximum diameter 12.0 mm, die axis 0o, Palmyra mint, c. 150 - 225 A.D.; obverse Atargatis bust facing, head left, wearing turreted crown, thin crescent left, star right; reverse radiate bust of young Malakbel (solar deity) left; from the Michael Arslan Collection; extremely rare; $240.00 (€196.80)
 


Philip II, July or August 247 - Late 249 A.D., Zeugma, Commagene, Syria

|Roman| |Syria|, |Philip| |II,| |July| |or| |August| |247| |-| |Late| |249| |A.D.,| |Zeugma,| |Commagene,| |Syria||AE| |27|
Zeugma was founded by Seleucus I Nicator who almost certainly named the city Seleucia after himself. In 64 B.C. the city was conquered by Rome and renamed Zeugma, meaning "bridge of boats." On the Silk Road connecting Antioch to China, Zeugma had a pontoon bridge across the Euphrates, which was the long time border with the Persian Empire. The Legio IV Scythica was camped in Zeugma. The legion and the trade station brought great wealth to Zeugma until, in 256, Zeugma was fully destroyed by the Sassanid king, Shapur I. An earthquake then buried the city beneath rubble. The city never regained its earlier prosperity and, after Arab raids in the 5th and 6th centuries, it was abandoned again.
SL89808. Bronze AE 27, Butcher 31c; SNG Cop 35; BMC Galatia p. 128, 35; SGICV 4142, NGC Ch VF, strike 5/5, surface 3/5 (4094544-007), weight 15.63 g, maximum diameter 27.4 mm, die axis 0o, Zeugma (Belkis, Turkey) mint, 247 - 249 A.D.; obverse AYTOK K M IOYΛI ΦIΛIΠΠOC CEB, laureate, draped and cuirassed bust right, from behind; reverse ZEYΓMATEΩN, tetrastyle temple with peribolos enclosing the sacred grove of trees, below Capricorn right; from the Martineit Collection of Ancient and World Coins, NGC| Lookup; $180.00 (€147.60)
 


Diadumenian, Mid May - 8 June 218 A.D., Laodicea ad Mar, Seleucia and Pieria, Syria

|Roman| |Syria|, |Diadumenian,| |Mid| |May| |-| |8| |June| |218| |A.D.,| |Laodicea| |ad| |Mar,| |Seleucia| |and| |Pieria,| |Syria||AE| |31|
Laodicea ad Mar (Latakia, Syria) has been inhabited since the second millennium B.C. It was on the Via Maris, a coastal road that ran south from Antioch to Damascus and Beirut. The city was renamed by Seleucus I Nicator in honor of his mother, Laodice and was a major port for the Seleukid Kingdom. Laodicea flourished under Rome and was second only to Antioch in the region. Herod the Great, king of Judaea, furnished Laodicea with an aqueduct, the remains of which stand to the east of the town. The Legio VI Ferrata was probably based in Laodicea.
JD97397. Bronze AE 31, Lindgren-Kovacs 2099, BMC Galatia -, SNG Cop -, SNG Munchen -, SNG Righetti -, aF, dark patina with highlighting earthen deposits, porosity/corrosion, edge split, weight 13.695 g, maximum diameter 31.4 mm, die axis 0o, Laodicea ad Mare (Latakia, Syria) mint, as caesar, 11 Apr 217 - mid May 218 A.D.; obverse IM M OP ANTONINOS NOB CAES, bare headed, draped and cuirassed bust right seen from the front; reverse ROMAE FEL, she-wolf right suckling Romulus and Remus; ex CGB Numismatique Paris; very rare; $140.00 (€114.80)
 


Trajan, 25 January 98 - 8 or 9 August 117 A.D., Struck in Rome for use in Syria

|Trajan|, |Trajan,| |25| |January| |98| |-| |8| |or| |9| |August| |117| |A.D.,| |Struck| |in| |Rome| |for| |use| |in| |Syria||chalkous|
In 116 A.D., Trajan made Syria a Roman province. The orichalcum coinage of 116 A.D., which included this coin, was struck in Rome and shipped to Antioch.
RY96780. Bronze chalkous, Woytek 939v (11 spec.), McAlee 526 (rare), RPC III 3681, BMCRE III 1075, Strack 496, gVF, thick earthen deposits, weight 0.748 g, maximum diameter 11.9 mm, die axis 225o, Rome mint, c. 116 A.D.; obverse laureate and draped bust right; reverse large S•C in wreath; a little gem; rare; $120.00 (€98.40)
 


Hadrian, 11 August 117 - 10 July 138 A.D., Chalcis ad Belum, Chalcidice, Syria

|Roman| |Syria|, |Hadrian,| |11| |August| |117| |-| |10| |July| |138| |A.D.,| |Chalcis| |ad| |Belum,| |Chalcidice,| |Syria||AE| |21|
Trajan's last coinage struck at Chalcis ad Belum used the same reverse, dated KE. Year 25 of the local era must have been Autumn 116 - Autumn 117 A.D.; thus the era of the city began in Autumn 92 A.D. The KE reverse was used for Hadrian's coinage only for the short time after the mint learned he was the new emperor until the local New Year's day (perhaps 29 August). When the New Year began the date was changed to B referring to Hadrian's second regnal year (a new regnal year began on New Year's day, not the one year anniversary of rule).
RP97251. Bronze AE 21, RPC III 3471A (1 spec., added post publication); Butcher CRS p. 437, 15 var. (obv. leg.); SNG Hunterian II 2711 var. (same, slight drapery), VF, near black patina with red earthen highlighting, tight flan, marks, edge a little ragged, weight 9.023 g, maximum diameter 21.2 mm, die axis 0o, Chalcis ad Belum (Qinnasrin, Syria) mint, Autumn 119 - Autumn 120 A.D.; obverse AYT KAIC Θ TPA YI Θ NEP YI - A∆PIANOC CEB, laureate and draped bust right; reverse ΦΛ XAΛ/KI∆EWN / ∆ (Flavius Chalkis [year] 4) in three lines, all within laurel wreath of eight bunches of leaves, closed at the top with a jewel; ex Leu Numismatik web auction 12 (31 May, 2020), part of lot 2018; very rare; $120.00 (€98.40)
 


Herennius Etruscus, Early 251 - First Half of June 251 A.D., Antioch, Seleucis and Pieria, Syria

|Antioch|, |Herennius| |Etruscus,| |Early| |251| |-| |First| |Half| |of| |June| |251| |A.D.,| |Antioch,| |Seleucis| |and| |Pieria,| |Syria||tetradrachm|
In 250 the Plague of Cyprian, a pandemic probably smallpox, began. It was still raging in 270 when it claimed the life of emperor Claudius II Gothicus. At the height of the outbreak, 5,000 people a day were said to be dying in Rome. The plague caused widespread manpower shortages in agriculture and the Roman army.
RY97763. Billon tetradrachm, McAlee 1153b (scarce), RPC Online IX 1715 (11 spec.), Prieur 630, Dura Coins 552, BMC Galatia 614 var. (5th officina), VF, slightly rough, weight 12.615 g, maximum diameter 25.3 mm, die axis 0o, 2nd officina, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, as caesar, 250 - early 251; obverse EPENN ETPOV ME KV ∆EKIOC KECAP, bare-headed, draped, and cuirassed bust right, seen from behind, two dots (2nd officina) below; reverse ∆HMAPX EΞOYCIAC (holder of Tribunitian power), eagle standing left on palm frond, wings open, head right, tail left, wreath in beak, S C (senatus consulto) in exergue; scarce; $110.00 (€90.20)
 


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

|Roman| |Syria|, |Macrinus,| |11| |April| |217| |-| |8| |June| |218| |A.D.,| |Gabala,| |Seleucis| |and| |Pieria,| |Syria||AE| |24|
Gabula was important enough in the Roman province of Syria Prima to be a Metropolitan Archdiocese in the sway of the Patriarchate of Antioch (the provincial capital Antioch on the Orontes), but was to fade, presumably at the advent of Islam.
RY92570. Bronze AE 24, SNG Cop 316; SNG Hunterian II 3244; Lindgren III 1192; SNG Munchen 835; BMC Galatia p. 246, 20 var. (laureate head), VF, dark green patina, highlighting earthen deposits, tight flan cutting off much of legends, porous, weight 8.847 g, maximum diameter 24.4 mm, die axis 15o, Gabala (Jableh, Syria) mint, 11 Apr 217 - 8 Jun 218 A.D.; obverse AV K M O C MAKPEINOC CE, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse ΓABAΛEWN, Tyche seated left, wearing chiton, peplos and modius, rudder held by tiller on right hand, cornucopia in left hand; from the Errett Bishop Collection; scarce; $100.00 (€82.00)
 


Philip I the Arab, February 244 - End of September 249 A.D., Antioch, Seleucis and Pieria, Syria

|Antioch|, |Philip| |I| |the| |Arab,| |February| |244| |-| |End| |of| |September| |249| |A.D.,| |Antioch,| |Seleucis| |and| |Pieria,| |Syria||tetradrachm|
In 248, Trajan Decius put down the revolts of Pacatianus in Moesia and Iotapianus in Syria, by order of Emperor Philip. In 249, after his legionaries proclaimed him emperor, Trajan Decius marched them to Verona, where he defeated and killed Philip.
RY93146. Billon tetradrachm, McAlee 934; Prieur 445; Dura Coins 427; BMC Galatia p. 214, 518; SNG Cop 269, VF, excellent portrait, dark brown and bronze tone, scratches, weight 11.324 g, maximum diameter 26.7 mm, die axis 0o, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, 248 - 249 A.D.; obverse AYTOK K M IOYΛI ΦIΛIΠΠOC CEB, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right, from behind; reverse ∆HMAPX EΞOYCIAC YΠATO ∆ (holder of Tribunitian power, consul for the 4th time), eagle standing right, wings open, head right, wreath in beak, ANTIOXIA S C in exergue; from the Errett Bishop Collection; $90.00 (€73.80)
 




  



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