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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Themes & Provenance| ▸ |Animals| ▸ |Bull or Cow||View Options:  |  |  |   

Cattle on Ancient Coins
Korkyra (Corfu), Island off Epirus, Greece, c. 433 - 360 B.C.

|Epirus|, |stater|
Corfu is a picturesque island near the coasts of Albania and Greece. The advantageous trade position allowed Corcyra to play an important role in Greek history. After the Byzantine Empire gradually collapsed it was ruled by Venice from 1401 to 1797, during which time the Turks laid several sieges against its impregnable Byzantine castle.
GS95931. Silver stater, Fried Group III; BMC Thessaly p. 118, 64; SNG Munchen 634; Dewing 1453; HGC 6 35 (R2); SNG Cop -; SNG Tubingen -, Choice VF, well centered and struck, attractive old collection toning, scratches, obverse die wear, weight 10.871 g, maximum diameter 21.2 mm, die axis 45o, Korkyra (Corfu) mint, c. 433 - 375/60 B.C.; obverse cow left, head turned back toward suckling calf standing right below; reverse vertical double stellate pattern, divided by double line, within square double linear frame, K right, all within a circular linear border; from the Errett Bishop Collection; rare; $800.00 SALE |PRICE| $720.00
 


Metapontion, Lucania, Italy, c. 440 - 430 B.C.

|Italy|, |obol|
Metapontum was one of the cities where the doctrines and sect of Pythagoras obtained the firmest footing. Even when the Pythagoreans were expelled from Crotona, they maintained themselves at Metapontum, where the philosopher himself retired, and where he ended his days. The Metapontines paid the greatest respect to his memory; they consecrated the house in which he had lived as a temple to Ceres, and gave to the street in which it was situated the name of the Museum. His tomb was still shown there in the days of Cicero.
GS91978. Silver obol, Noe-Johnston 2, pl. 44, 346.3; SNG Ash 680; SNG Stockholm 192; HN Italy 1500 var. (horns downward); HGC I 1087 (R2) var. (same); SNG ANS -; SNG Cop -, gVF, toned, flow lines, slightly off center, tiny edge splits, weight 0.435 g, maximum diameter 8.4 mm, die axis 0o, Metapontion (Metaponto, Italy) mint, c. 440 - 430 B.C.; obverse ear of barley in border of large dots; reverse ox head facing with horns pointed upward; ex FORVM (2009); very rare; $270.00 SALE |PRICE| $243.00
 


Lamponeia, Troas, c. 5th - Early 4th Century B.C.

|Troas|, |hemiobol|
Lamponeia was on the southern coast of Troas, on the long crest of a mountain, above the modern village of Kozlu in Canakkale Province, Turkey. From this site, the city could monitor sea traffic on the coast and control a narrow valley which connected Assos to the cities of the middle Skamander valley. The settlement was 800 m long and protected by a 7 m thick circuit wall of rough masonry and boulders, dated to the 6th century B.C. In the 5th century B.C. the city was a member of the Delian League and paid Athens a modest tribute of 1,000 drachms (on one occasion in 430/429 1,400 drachms). In the late 5th and early 4th century B.C. the city minted bronze coinage, but thereafter disappears from the historical record. It is possible that soon after the site was abandoned and its citizens moved to Assos. Late Roman and Byzantine period finds suggest that the site was reoccupied in this period, perhaps as a defensive measure against piracy and brigandage.
GS89698. Silver hemiobol, cf. SNG Cop 444 (obol); SNG Tübingen 2649 (triobol); Traité 2295; BMC Troas p. 72, 12 (hemidrachm); SNG Munchen -; SNG Kayhan -; Klein -, VF, well centered, toned, porous, oval flan, weight 0.270 g, maximum diameter 8.1 mm, die axis 0o, Lamponeia (near Kozlu, Canakkale, Turkey) mint, c. 5th - early 4th century B.C.; obverse bearded head of Dionysos right, hair bound in taenia; reverse facing head of bull, ΛAM around clockwise from lower left, all within a shallow incuse square; ex Beast Coins, this type is apparently unpublished in references as a hemidrachm, but larger denominations with the same types are published, and five hemiobol specimens are known from auctions over the last two decades; extremely rare; $200.00 SALE |PRICE| $180.00
 


Domitian, 13 September 81 - 18 September 96 A.D., Parion, Mysia(?)

|Parium|, |AE| |17|
The attribution of this very rare type to Parium is uncertain. See RPC II p. 137.

The ceremonial founding of a new Roman colony included plowing a furrow, the pomerium, a sacred boundary, around the site of the new city.
RP94085. Bronze AE 17, RPC II Online 889 (12 spec.), SNGvA 6202 (Germa, Galatia), BMC Mysia -, SNG BnF -, SNG Cop -, F, mottled green patina, bumps and scratches, slightly off center, obverse legend not fully struck, weight 4.016 g, maximum diameter 17.1 mm, die axis 0o, Parion, Mysia(?) mint, 13 Sep 81 - 18 Sep 96 A.D.; obverse DOMIT AVG (clockwise from the upper right), laureate head left; reverse priest plowing right with two oxen, marking the pomerium (sacred boundary marked for the foundation of a new Roman colony), GERM in exergue; zero sales of this type recorded on Coin Archives in the last two decades; very rare; $180.00 SALE |PRICE| $145.00
 


Thourioi, Lucania, Italy, 350 - 300 B.C., Ancient Counterfeit

|Italy|, |stater|
The possible plating breaks are so darkly toned black within that we cannot detect any copper color. So, why do we think this coin is a plated counterfeit? It is about a full gram under normal weight. Another indicator is behind Athena's head. Fourree were often made by wrapping a bronze blank in two pieces of thin silver foil. A piece of foil was applied on each side and folded tightly around the edge. Striking would fuse the foil to the core. Behind Athena's head you can see an irregular darker line roughly following the edge. We believe this was the edge of the foil applied to the reverse and folded over on the obverse.
GS93383. Fouree silver plated stater, cf. HN Italy 1813; SNG ANS 1056; BMC Italy, p. 293, 63; HGC I - (official, solid silver, Thourioi mint), VF, toned, underweight, obverse off center, scratches and bumps, possible plating breaks, weight 6.581 g, maximum diameter 20.5 mm, die axis 225o, unofficial mint, c. 350 - 300 B.C.; obverse head of Athena right, wearing crested Attic helmet decorated with Skylla; reverse ΘOYPIΩN, bull butting right, tail raised above, head turned facing, I above, dotted exergue line, tunny right below; from the Errett Bishop Collection (purchased by Dr. Bishop as official, but we strongly suspect it is plated); $130.00 SALE |PRICE| $117.00
 


Caria (Uncertain City), c. 460 - 440 B.C.

|Other| |Caria|, |hemiobol|
Troxell notes that hoard provinces indicate this type was struck in Caria, however, the issuing city remains unknown. SNG Kayhan identifies the denomination as a Milesian standard tetartemorion. SNG Keckman lists it as a Persic hemiobol.
GS92103. Silver hemiobol, Troxell Carians 11C, SNG Keckman 913 ff.; cf. SNG Kayhan 968 ff. (no star), SNG Tüb 3329 (same), BMC Caria -, F/VF, obverse off center, light marks, light encrustations, weight 0.265 g, maximum diameter 6.9 mm, die axis 0o, Carian mint, c. 460 - 440 B.C.; obverse foreparts of two bulls confronted; reverse forepart of bull left, star below; ex Civitas Galleries; scarce; $120.00 SALE |PRICE| $108.00
 


Caria (Uncertain City), c. 460 - 440 B.C.

|Other| |Caria|, |hemiobol|
Troxell notes that hoard provinces indicate this type was struck in Caria, however, the issuing city remains unknown. SNG Kayhan identifies the denomination as a Milesian standard tetartemorion. SNG Keckman lists it as a Persic hemiobol.
GS89049. Silver hemiobol, Troxell Carians 11C, SNG Keckman 913 ff.; cf. SNG Kayhan 968 ff. (no star), SNG Tüb 3329 (same), VF, toned, light marks, obverse slightly off center, light marks, small edge crack, weight 0.340 g, maximum diameter 7.9 mm, die axis 180o, Carian mint, c. 460 - 440 B.C.; obverse foreparts of two bulls confronted; reverse forepart of bull left, star below; ex Forum (2014); scarce; $95.00 SALE |PRICE| $85.50
 


Cales, Campania, Italy, c. 265 - 240 B.C.

|Italy|, |AE| |20|
The Romans captured Cales in 335 B.C. and established a colony in 334 with Latin rights of 2,500 citizens. It was an important base in the war against Hannibal. Before 184 B.C. more settlers were sent there. After the Social War it became a municipium. Its fertile territory and manufacture of black glazed pottery, which was even exported to Etruria, made it prosperous. Inscriptions name six gates of the town: and there are considerable remains of antiquity, especially of an amphitheater and theater, of a supposed temple, a Roman necropolis, and other edifices.
GB73620. Bronze AE 20, SNG Cop 309; HN Italy 436, SNG ANS 183, cf. BMC Italy p. 79, 23 (star of eight rays vice O below), F, green patina, tight flan, weight 6.161 g, maximum diameter 19.6 mm, die axis 225o, Cales (Calvi Risorta, Italy) mint, c. 265 - 240 B.C.; obverse CALENO, laureate head of Apollo left, star behind; reverse man-faced bull right, star of sixteen rays above, Θ (or O?) below, CALENO in exergue; $65.00 SALE |PRICE| $58.50 ON RESERVE


Magnesia ad Maeandrum, Ionia, c. 350 - 190 B.C.

|Magnesia| |ad| |Meandrum|, |AE| |13|
Magnesia ad Maeandrum was an inland city of Ionia, located on a small tributary of the Maeander River about 12 miles southeast of Ephesus. "..the temple of Artemis Leukophryene, which in the size of its shrine and in the number of its votive offerings is inferior to the temple at Ephesos, but in the harmony and skill shown in the structure of the sacred enclosure is far superior to it. And in size it surpasses all the sacred enclosures in Asia except two, that at Ephesos (to Artemis) and that at Didymoi (to Apollo)" -- Strabo, Geography 14. 1. 40.
GB91735. Bronze AE 13, cf. BMC Ionia p. 161, 26 (same magistrate, AE16, meander border); SNG Cop 815 (same); SNGvA -; SNG Munchen -; SNG Tübingen -, VF, green patina, minor encrustations, obverse a little off center, weight 2.214 g, maximum diameter 12.8 mm, die axis 0o, Magnesia ad Maeandrum (near Tekin, Turkey) mint, c. 350 - 190 B.C.; obverse armed horseman in chlamys prancing right, holding couched spear; reverse humped bull butting left, MAΓN above, KY∆POKΛHΣ (magistrate) below; $60.00 SALE |PRICE| $54.00
 


Caracalla, 28 Jan 198 - 8 Apr 217 A.D., Pautalia, Thrace

|Pautalia|, |AE| |18|
Pautalia, Geta, 209 - c. 26 December 211 A.D., Pautalia, Thrace, pentassarion The site of Pautalia (modern Kyustendil, Bulgaria) was settled in the Iron Age by the Thracian Dentheletes tribe. It was located near thermal springs and remains of the ancient city include a temple of Asklepios and Roman baths. In the 1990s, excavation of nearby 2nd century A.D. tumuli unearthed bronze surgical instruments and a small bronze case containing a variety of medicines.
MA95627. Bronze AE 18, Ruzicka Pautalia 743, Varbanov II 5035 (R4), Moushmov -, SNG Cop -, BMC Thrace -, F, tight flan, porous, weight 3.516 g, maximum diameter 18.1 mm, die axis 45o, Pautalia (Kyustendil, Bulgaria) mint, c. 198 - 208 A.D.; obverse AY K M AY ANTΩNEINOC, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right, from behind; reverse OYΛΠIAC ΠAYTA,ΛIAC (ending in exergue), bull walking right; $50.00 SALE |PRICE| $45.00
 




  



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REFERENCES|

Molinari, N.J. & N. Sisci. Potamikon: Sinews of Acheloios. A Comprehensive Catalog of the Bronze Coinage of the Man-Faced Bull, With Essays on Origin and Identity. (Oxford, 2016).

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