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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Themes & Provenance| ▸ |Gods, Olympians| ▸ |Demeter or Ceres||View Options:  |  |  |   

Demeter or Ceres

The known mythology of Demeter and Ceres is identical. Demeter's (Ceres') virgin daughter Persephone (Proserpina) was abducted by Hades (Pluto) to be his wife in the underworld. Demeter searched for her endlessly, lighting her way through the earth with torches. While Demeter searched, preoccupied with her loss and her grief, the seasons halted; living things ceased their growth, then began to die. Some say that in her anger she laid a curse that caused plants to wither and die, and the land to become desolate. Faced with the extinction of all life on earth, Zeus (Jupiter) sent his messenger Hermes (Mercury) to the underworld to bring Persephone back. However, because Persephone had eaten while in the underworld, Hades had a claim on her. It was decreed that she must spend four months each year in the underworld. During these months Demeter grieves for her daughter's absence, withdrawing her gifts from the world, creating winter. Persephone's return brings the spring.

Agrippina Junior, Augusta 50 - March 59 A.D., Hierapolis, Phrygia

|Hierapolis|, |Agrippina| |Junior,| |Augusta| |50| |-| |March| |59| |A.D.,| |Hierapolis,| |Phrygia||assarion|
Hierapolis (Greek: "Holy City") was located on hot springs in Phrygia in southwestern Anatolia. Its ruins are adjacent to modern Pamukkale in Turkey and are designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The hot springs have been used as a spa since the 2nd century B.C., with many patrons retiring or dying there. The large necropolis is filled with sarcophagi.
RP110002. Bronze assarion, RPC I 2983 (4 spec.); SNGvA 3649; BMC Phrygia p. 249, 127, VF, rough areas of light corrosion, legends weak, weight 3.731 g, maximum diameter 16.2 mm, die axis 0o, Hierapolis (near Pamukkale, Turkey) mint, magistrate Magytes Neoteros, c. 55 A.D.; obverse AΓPIΠΠINA ΣEBAΣTH, draped bust right; reverse MAΓYTHΣ NEΩTEPOΣ IEPAΠOΛEITΩN, Demeter seated left on throne, stalk of grain and two poppies in right hand; rare; $100.00 SALE PRICE $90.00


Claudius, 25 January 41 - 13 October 54 A.D.

|Claudius|, |Claudius,| |25| |January| |41| |-| |13| |October| |54| |A.D.||dupondius| |(or| |as)|NEW
The consignor's tag identifies this coin as imitative. During the reign of Claudius coinage was apparently in short supply in Gaul and imitatives were both cast and struck locally to fill the needs of commerce. This coin is better style than the imitatives we have handled. We think it is more likely an official coin from the Rome mint.
RB112161. Orichalcum dupondius (or as), cf. RIC I 94, Cohen I 1, BMCRE I 136, BnF II 174, SRCV I 1855 (all Rome mint), F, toned bare metal, mild porosity, weight 10.574 g, maximum diameter 28.0 mm, die axis 225o, Gallic imitative (or Rome?) mint, c. 41 - 50 A.D.; obverse TI CLAVDIVS CAESAR AVG P M TR P IMP, bare head left; reverse CERES AVGVSTA, Ceres seated left, veiled, branch in right hand, torch in left hand, S C (senatus consulto) in exergue; From Shawn Caza former diplomat, author of A Handbook of Late Roman Coins (Spink, 2021), collection assembled during postings and international travel; ex Maison Platt Numismatique (Paris); $100.00 SALE PRICE $90.00


Anazarbus, Cilicia, 114 - 115 A.D.

|Cilicia|, |Anazarbus,| |Cilicia,| |114| |-| |115| |A.D.||hemiassarion|
The torch is a symbol that can be related to either Artemis or Demeter. Although goddess on the reverse is usually identified in references as Artemis, we believe it is Demeter. In year 132, this type was struck at Anazarbus with larger denominations depicting Trajan on the obverse, some with reverses depicting Trajan's sister Marciana, and others with reverses depicting her daughter, Trajan's niece, Matidia. Circulating alongside the other coins, these coins advertised the importance of Marciana and Matidia to the imperial family and suggested that they, similar to Demeter and her daughter Persephone, were essential to the prosperity of the empire.
GB110042. Bronze hemiassarion, Ziegler 122; RPC III 3375; BMC Lycaonia p. 31, 3; SNG BnF 2026; cf. SNG Levante 1380 (year 132); SNG Cop -; SNGvA -; SNG Righetti -, F, dark green patina, scratches, reverse edge beveled, weight 3.023 g, maximum diameter 17.0 mm, die axis 0o, Anazarbus (Anavarza, Turkey) mint, 114 - 115 A.D.; obverse KAICAPIA ANAZAP, veiled bust of Persephone right, grain ears and poppy before; reverse veiled bust of Demeter right, wearing polos (resembling a pileus), flaming torch before, ET ΓΛP (year 133) upward behind; $70.00 SALE PRICE $63.00


Kibyra, Phrygia, c. 138 - 192 A.D.

|Other| |Phrygia|, |Kibyra,| |Phrygia,| |c.| |138| |-| |192| |A.D.||AE| |21|
Kibyra (Cibyra) near the modern town of Glhisar in south-west Turkey, was possibly originally settled by Lydians. The city was in the far south of Phrygia adjoining Lycia. It is uncertain whether the city was part of the Province of Asia or of Lycia in the early imperial period. According to Strabo, the Lydian language was still being spoken by a multicultural population in the 1st century B.C. Thus Kibyra was the last place where the Lydian culture, by then extinct in Lydia proper, persevered.
RP110161. Bronze AE 21, RPC IV.2 T1953 (10 spec.); Kurth Demos 358; SNG Cop 276; SNGvA 3724; BMC Phrygia p. 135, 25; SNG Mu -; Lindgren -, aVF/VF, dark green patina, rough, porous, earthen deposits, broad flan, weight 6.631 g, maximum diameter 22.3 mm, die axis 180o, Kibyra (near Golhisar, Turkey) mint, c. 138 - 192 A.D.; obverse ΔHMOC (clockwise from upper right), laureate head of Demos right, unbearded; reverse KIBYPATWN, Demeter standing slightly left, head left, wearing long chiton and veil, poppy and grain in right hand, long torch in left hand; rare; $60.00 SALE PRICE $54.00


Philadelphia, Arabia Petraea, 164 - 165 A.D.

|Roman| |Arabia|, |Philadelphia,| |Arabia| |Petraea,| |164| |-| |165| |A.D.||AE| |17|
Rabbath-Ammon of the Old Testament, was renamed Philadelphia by Ptolemy II Philadelphus, and is today Amman, Jordan. Genesis identifies the Ammonites as descendants of Ben-ammi, who was born of an incestuous union between a drunken Lot and his younger daughter (Genesis 19:38). The Israelite Jephthah crossed the Jordan River "to attack the Ammonites, and the Lord delivered them into his hands" (Judges 11:32). Before the battle, he swore an oath that, for victory, he would sacrifice the first thing to greet him when he returned home - it was his daughter, his his only child, who came out to meet him with tambourines and dancing. At the sight of her, he tore his clothes and said, "Oh, my daughter, you have broken my heart!" and he fulfilled the vow he had made (Judges 11:34-39).
GB110783. Bronze AE 17, RPC Online IV.3 6656.4; Sofaer 8; SNG ANS 1379; Spijkerman 3; Rosenberger 28; BMC Arabia p. 37, 2; Meshorer City Coins 257, aF, dark brown patina, earthen deposits, porosity, edge cracks, weight 3.190 g, maximum diameter 17.1 mm, die axis 0o, Philadelphia (Amman, Jordan) mint, rule of Marcus Aurelius, 164 - 165 A.D.; obverse ΦIΛ KOI CYPI, wreathed in grain, veiled and draped bust of Demeter right, two stalks of grain before her; reverse ETOYC ZKC (year 277 [of the Pompeian Era]), two snakes with two stalks of grain between them, rising from cista mystica (wicker basket); Coin Archives records only one specimen of the type at auction in the last two decades; rare; $55.00 SALE PRICE $49.50


Metapontion, Lucania, Italy, 334 - 330 B.C.

|Italy|, |Metapontion,| |Lucania,| |Italy,| |334| |-| |330| |B.C.||1/3| |stater|
Gold coins of Magna Graecia are scarce and were only minted for exceptional occasions, such as paying mercenaries. Most likely this rare issue was struck when Alexander Molossus, the Epirote King, helped Metapontion against the Lucanians and Bruttians. Molossus was Alexander the Great's uncle and Olympia's brother.
SH86428. Gold 1/3 stater, SNG Lockett 406; SNG ANS 395; HN Italy 1578; Noe-Johnston 3, G1 and pl. 18; SNG Lloyd -; SNG Cop -; Jameson -; Gulbenkian -; Pozzi -; Weber -, aVF+, fine style, marks, reverse double struck, weight 2.574 g, maximum diameter 13.6 mm, die axis 180o, Metapontion (Metaponto, Italy) mint, c. 334 - 332 B.C.; obverse head of Demeter right, wearing stephane and pendant earring; reverse MΕTAΠON, barley stalk, bird right on leaf to right; ex Forum (2007), ex Christie's Auction (1993) ; very rare; SOLD


Nero, 13 October 54 - 9 June 68 A.D.

|Nero|, |Nero,| |13| |October| |54| |-| |9| |June| |68| |A.D.||sestertius|
After the Great Fire of Rome in July 64, Lugdunum sent a fortune to Rome to aid in the reconstruction. However, during the winter of 64 - 65, Lyon suffered its own catastrophic fire. Nero reciprocated, sending money to Lugdunum for their reconstruction.
RB37367. Orichalcum sestertius, RIC I 431, Choice VF, some smoothing, weight 27.786 g, maximum diameter 35.6 mm, die axis 180o, Lugdunum (Lyon, France) mint, 65 A.D.; obverse NERO CLAVD CAESAR AVG GER P M TR P IMP P P, laureate head left, large globe at point of bust; reverse ANNONA AVGVSTI CERES S C, Annona standing right, right hand on hip, cornucopia in left hand, facing Ceres enthroned left, holding grain-ears and torch; in center modius on garlanded altar, prow behind; ex CNG 217, 345 (8/26/09, sold for $1045); dark green restored patina; SOLD


Nero, 13 October 54 - 9 June 68 A.D.

|Nero|, |Nero,| |13| |October| |54| |-| |9| |June| |68| |A.D.||sestertius|
Annona was the goddess of harvest and Ceres the goddess of agriculture. This reverse refers to the transportation of grain by sea from the provinces (especially from Africa) and its distribution to the people. By the Code De Naviculariis, the mariners appointed to carry grain from Egypt could be executed if they did not keep the proper course; and if they did not sail in the proper season, the master of the vessel would be banished.
SH94037. Orichalcum sestertius, RIC I 137, BMCRE I 128, Mac Dowall WCN 119, BnF II 273 var. (NERO CLAVDIVS...), Cohen I 24 var. (same), Hunter I -, SRCV I -, VF, well centered on a broad flan, nice green patina, pin-prick pitting, weight 26.678 g, maximum diameter 35.3 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 65 A.D.; obverse NERO CLAVD CAESAR AVG GER P M TR P IMP P P, laureate bust right wearing aegis; reverse ANNONA AVGVSTI CERES, Annona standing right, right hand on hip, cornucopia in left hand, facing Ceres enthroned left, holding grain-ears in right hand, torch in left hand, modius on garlanded altar in center between them, ship's stern in background, S C (senatus consulto) in exergue; ex Pegasi Numismatics; SOLD


Knidos, Caria, 1st Century B.C.

|Knidos|, |Knidos,| |Caria,| |1st| |Century| |B.C.||AE| |32|
Based on only the single worn example known to the authors, RPC I attributed this type to Livia from an uncertain mint. Based on the Mabbott coin with a clear poppy on the obverse and ethnic on the reverse, the RPC I Supplement corrected the attribution to Demeter and Knidos. Similar countermarks are known on coins from Chalkis, Laodicea, Antioch, Selucia, and Damascus, cities under the control of Cleopatra. We believe it is her portrait. Cleopatra and Marc Antony spent considerable romantic time together around Knidos. It is said that Marc Antony sent ships to the Nile to retrieve sand for a beach, which is known today as Cleopatra's Beach. Click here to read about this coin on NumisWiki.

RP21181. Bronze AE 32, RPC I 5436 (1 example known to RPC, attributed to Livia, 2nd example and corrected to Demeter in supplement), F, countermark VF, weight 17.192 g, maximum diameter 32.1 mm, die axis 0o, Knidos (near Tekir, Turkey) mint, 1st century B.C.; obverse veiled and diademed bust of Demeter right [holding poppy], oval countermark of Cleopatra VII? right; reverse KNI..., Nike advancing left with wreath and palm; rare; SOLD


Knidos, Caria, c. 100 - 40 B.C.

|Knidos|, |Knidos,| |Caria,| |c.| |100| |-| |40| |B.C.||AE| |32|
This type struck by this magistrate appears to be unpublished and we do not know another example. The referenced similar type struck under the magistrate Apollonios is also extremely rare with only a few known examples. Similar countermarks are known on coins from Chalkis, Laodicea, Antioch, Selucia, and Damascus, cities under the control of Cleopatra. We believe it is her portrait. Cleopatra and Marc Antony spent considerable romantic time together around Knidos. It is said that Marc Antony sent ships to the Nile to retrieve sand for a beach, which is known today as Cleopatra's Beach.
RP76800. Bronze AE 32, Apparently unpublished; cf. Mabbott 1715 (magistrate), RPC I suppl. 5436 (same); SNG Cop -, SNGvA -, SNG Munchen -, SNG Tb -, SNG Keckman -, aF, porous, scratches, corrosion, weight 18.277 g, maximum diameter 31.6 mm, die axis 0o, Knidos (near Tekir, Turkey) mint, c. 100 - 40 B.C.; countermark: c. 36 - 30 B.C.; obverse veiled and diademed bust of Demeter right, poppy before her (covered by countermark), oval countermark: female head (Cleopatra VII?) right; reverse Nike advancing left, wreath in extended right hand, palm frond in left hand, MOΣXΩN (magistrate's name) downward on left, KNIΔIΩN downward on right; one of only two known, the other without the countermark!; SOLD




  



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