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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Themes & Provenance| ▸ |Nautical & Marine| ▸ |Ships||View Options:  |  |  | 

Galleys and Other Ships on Ancient Coins
Persian Empire, Sidon, Phoenicia, King Ba'lshallim II, c. 401 - 366 B.C.

|Phoenicia|, |Persian| |Empire,| |Sidon,| |Phoenicia,| |King| |Ba'lshallim| |II,| |c.| |401| |-| |366| |B.C.||double| |shekel|
Sidon, named for the "first-born" of Canaan, the grandson of Noah (Genesis 10:15, 19), is frequently referred to by the prophets (Isaiah 23:2, 4, 12; Jeremiah 25:22; 27:3; 47:4; Ezekiel 27:8; 28:21, 22; 32:30; Joel 3:4). The Sidonians long oppressed Israel (Judges 10:12) but Solomon entered into a matrimonial alliance with them, and thus their form of idolatrous worship found a place in the land of Israel (1 Kings 11:1, 33). Jesus visited the "coasts" of Tyre and Sidon (Matthew 15:21; Mark 7:24) where many came to hear him preach (Mark 3:8; Luke 6:17). After leaving Caesarea, Paul's ship put in at Sidon, before finally sailing for Rome (Acts 27:3, 4).
SH96814. Silver double shekel, Elayi-Elayi Sidon 627 (D36/R48); Betlyon p. 9, 18 & pl. 2, 4; BMC Phoenicia p. 143, 17; Sunrise Collection 125; HGC 10 236 (C), gF, oval flan, porosity, obverse off center, weight 28.155 g, maximum diameter 31.5 mm, die axis 45o, Sidon (Saida, Lebanon) mint, c. 401 - 366 B.C.; obverse war galley rowing left, small figure figurehead in bow (off flan), row of round shields along bulwarks, standard and rudder at stern, Phoenician letter beth above, two lines of zig-zag waves below, cable border; reverse Emperor of Persia with charioteer in a biga left, bearded king wears kidaris and kandys and raises right hand, charioteer leans forward holding reigns, horses waking, king of Sidon walks behind in Egyptian crown and garb carrying a cultic scepter and votive vase, double exergue line, cable border, all in shallow round incuse; ex Superior Stamp and Coin (Beverly Hills, CA, 1990's); scarce; $970.00 (€892.40) ON RESERVE


Commodus, March or April 177 - 31 December 192 A.D., Nicomedia, Bithynia

|Bithynia|, |Commodus,| |March| |or| |April| |177| |-| |31| |December| |192| |A.D.,| |Nicomedia,| |Bithynia||AE| |26|
Nicomedia was the Roman metropolis of Bithynia. Diocletian made it the capital of the Eastern Roman Empire in 286 when he introduced the Tetrarchy system. Nicomedia remained the eastern (and most senior) capital of the Empire until co-emperor Licinius was defeated by Constantine the Great at the Battle of Chrysopolis in 324. Constantine resided mainly in Nicomedia as his interim capital for the next six years, until in 330 when he declared nearby Byzantium (renamed Constantinople) the new capital. Constantine died in his royal villa near Nicomedia in 337. Due to its position at the convergence of the Asiatic roads leading to the new capital, Nicomedia retained its importance even after the foundation of Constantinople.
RP92638. Bronze AE 26, RPC IV.1 T9895 (1 spec.), Rec Gen 144(2), SNG Cop 568, SNGvA -, Corsten -, aVF, well centered, earthen highlights, porous, weight 10.629 g, maximum diameter 26.0 mm, die axis 30o, Nikomedia (Izmit, Turkey) mint, obverse A K M AV KO ANTΩNI, laureate head right; reverse MHT NEΩ NEIKOMH∆, Athena standing left, wearing crested helmet, small galley in extended right hand, grounded vertical spear and round shield in left hand; from the Errett Bishop Collection, this is the second known and finest know specimen of the type; extremely rare; $500.00 (€460.00)
 


Lot of 4 Silver Fractions From Phoenicia, c. 425 - 300 B.C.

|Phoenicia|, |Lot| |of| |4| |Silver| |Fractions| |From| |Phoenicia,| |c.| |425| |-| |300| |B.C.||Lot|
 
GA97055. Silver Lot, 4 silver fractions, c. 0.6g - 0.8g, c. 9mm, $200.00 (€184.00)
 


Roman Republic, Anonymous, Second Punic War, 211 - 206 B.C.

|before| |150| |B.C.|, |Roman| |Republic,| |Anonymous,| |Second| |Punic| |War,| |211| |-| |206| |B.C.||as|
Janus (or Ianus) was the god of gates, doors, doorways, beginnings and endings. He is most often depicted as having two faces or heads, facing in opposite directions. Janus is believed to be one of the few major deities in Roman mythology that does not have a Greek origin or counterpart.
RR88221. Bronze as, Crawford 56/2, Sydenham 143, BMCRR Rome 373 ff., SRCV I 627, F, green patina, crack, porous, weight 29.386 g, maximum diameter 33.3 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 211 - 206 B.C.; obverse laureate head of bearded Janus, I (mark of value) above, countermark: head right in round punch; reverse war galley prow right, I (mark of value) above, ROMA in exergue; ex Moneta Numismatic Services; $115.00 (€105.80)
 


Roman Republic, Matienus, c. 179 - 170 B.C.

|before| |150| |B.C.|, |Roman| |Republic,| |Matienus,| |c.| |179| |-| |170| |B.C.||quadrans|
In 178 B.C., the praetor Lucius Postumius Albinus celebrated a triumph in Rome after conquering the Vaccaei and Lusitani during his time as Roman commander in the province of Hispania Ulterior.
RR93754. Bronze quadrans, Crawford 162/6b, Sydenham 321g, BMCRR Italy 410, Russo RBW 717, SRCV I 1096, VF, rough from corrosion, edge cracks, pre-strike casting seam, squared flan resulting from cuts to remove pre-stike casting sprues, weight 7.276 g, maximum diameter 20.7 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, c. 179 - 170 B.C.; obverse head of Hercules right, wearing Nemean Lion's scalp headdress, three pellets (mark of value, 3 uncia) behind; reverse prow of a galley right, ROMA above, MAT ligature right, three pellets (mark of value, 3 uncia) below; from the Errett Bishop Collection; scarce; $100.00 (€92.00)
 


Seleukid Kingdom, Antiochus IX Cyzicenus, 114 - 95 B.C.

|Seleucid| |Kingdom|, |Seleukid| |Kingdom,| |Antiochus| |IX| |Cyzicenus,| |114| |-| |95| |B.C.||AE| |15|
After Antiochus IX's father died, his uncle Demetrius II Nicator took the throne. For his safety, his mother, Cleopatra Thea, sent him to Cyzicus (leading to his nickname). He returned to Syria in 116 B.C. to claim the throne from his half-brother Antiochus VIII Grypus, with whom he eventually divided Syria. He was killed in battle by the son of Grypus, Seleucus VI Epiphanes.
GY93776. Bronze AE 15, Houghton Lorber 2378.1, Babelon Rois 1509, SNG Spaer 2721, BMC Seleucid 32 - 34, VF, well centered, dark patina, highlighting earthen deposits, light marks, light corrosion, weight 2.202 g, maximum diameter 14.7 mm, die axis 0o, uncertain N. Syria, Phoenicia, or Coele Syria mint, 135 - 95 B.C.; obverse helmeted head of Athena right; reverse prow right, BAΣIΛEΩΣ / ANTIOXOY in two lines above, ΦIΛOΠATOPOΣ below; from the Errett Bishop Collection; rare; $100.00 (€92.00)
 


Macedonian Kingdom, Demetrios I Poliorketes, 306 - 283 B.C.

|Macedonian| |Kingdom|, |Macedonian| |Kingdom,| |Demetrios| |I| |Poliorketes,| |306| |-| |283| |B.C.||AE| |13|
Demetrius I Poliorketes (The Besieger), son of Antigonus I Monophthalmus, was given the title king by his father in 306 B.C. after he defeated Ptolemy I at the Battle of Salamis. In 294 he seized the throne of Macedonia by murdering Alexander V. The combined forces of Pyrrhus, Ptolemy and Lysimachus, forced him out of Macedonia in 288. Abandoned by his troops on the field of battle he surrendered to Seleucus in 286 and died in captivity in 283 B.C.
GB93465. Bronze AE 13, cf. HGC 3 1031 (R2), Newell 62 corr. (says monogram on left in error), SNG Cop -, SNG Alpha Bank -, F, green patina, corrosion and scattered pits, weight 2.115 g, maximum diameter 12.9 mm, die axis 0o, uncertain western Anatolian mint, c. 298 - 295 B.C.; obverse prow of war galley left, Athena on deck standing left blowing trumpet and holding stylis; reverse Poseidon Pelagaios standing left, brandishing trident with right hand, nude but for chlamys draped over extended left arm, control monogram right(?), B - A low across field; from the Errett Bishop Collection; rare; $80.00 (€73.60)
 


Arados, Phoenicia, c. 240 - 237 B.C.

|Phoenicia|, |Arados,| |Phoenicia,| |c.| |240| |-| |237| |B.C.||AE| |16|
In 259 B.C. Arados increased her autonomy and dominated a federation of nearby cities including Gabala, Karne, Marathos and Simyra. Thus began the era of Aradus, to which the subsequent coins of the city are dated. Arados was not completely independent, however, the Seleukids retained overlordship.
GB93618. Bronze AE 16, Duyrat 1374 - 1403; BMC Phoenicia p. 13, 88 - 90; Lindgren III 1334; HGC 10 86 (S); SNG Cop -, VF, nice glossy black patina with red earthen highlighting, obverse edge beveled, tiny edge split, weight 4.102 g, maximum diameter 16.1 mm, die axis 0o, Arados (Arwad, Syria) mint, c. 240 - 237 B.C.; obverse turreted bust of Tyche right; reverse prow of war galley left with figurehead of Athena Promachos fighting left, no date, (AP monogram) above; from the Errett Bishop Collection; $80.00 (€73.60)
 


Hadrian, 11 August 117 - 10 July 138 A.D.

|Hadrian|, |Hadrian,| |11| |August| |117| |-| |10| |July| |138| |A.D.||sestertius|
In 132, a messianic, charismatic Jewish leader Simon bar Kokhba started the Bar Kokhba revolt, a war of liberation for Judea against Rome. At first the rebellion was a success. The legion X Fretensis was forced to retreat from Jerusalem to Caesarea. The legion XXII Deiotariana, which advanced from Egypt, was destroyed. The Jews re-established their sacrifices and struck coins to celebrate their independence. The rebellion would last for only 30 months. By 135, the Romans had recaptured Jerusalem, Simon bar Kokhba was dead, and the majority of the Jewish population of Judea was either killed, exiled, or sold into slavery. Jerusalem was renamed Colonia Aelia Capitolina and an altar to Jupiter was erected on the site of the Temple. The Jews remained scattered without a homeland for close to two millennia.

RB95834. Orichalcum sestertius, RIC II-3 1291, BMCRE III 1400, Strack II 837, Hunter II 473, SRCV II 3596, Fair, pitting, weight 22.403 g, maximum diameter 33.5 mm, die axis 0o, Rome mint, 129 - 130 A.D.; obverse HADRIANVS AVGVSTVS, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right; reverse FELICITATI AVG (above around edge), galley rowed left over waves, six oarsmen, steersman under an arched shelter at the stern, vexillum on prow, S - C (senatus consulto) flanking ship, COS III P P in exergue; ex Dan Clark (c. 1990); $80.00 (€73.60)
 


Roman Republic, Anonymous (Unofficial?), c. 91 B.C.

|99-50| |B.C.|, |Roman| |Republic,| |Anonymous| |(Unofficial?),| |c.| |91| |B.C.||quadrans|
Russo suspects this type may be unofficial because, despite the attractive style, the prow does not include the usual features found on most coins of the period.
RR88352. Copper quadrans, Russo RBW 1244 (unofficial?), Crawford 339/4a, Sydenham 679c, BMCRR Rome 2208, SRCV I 1195, VF, porous, rough, edge splits, weight 2.114 g, maximum diameter 16.7 mm, die axis 180o, unofficial(?) mint, c. 169 - 91 B.C.; obverse head of Hercules right, wearing Nemean Lion scalp headdress, three pellets behind; reverse prow right, apotropaic on side, ROMA above, three pellets below; $75.00 (€69.00)
 







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REFERENCES

Schaaff, Ulrich. Münzen der römischen Kaiserzeit mit Schiffsdarstellungen im Römisch-Germanischen Zentralmuseum. (Munich, 2003).

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