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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Greek Coins| ▸ |Geographic - All Periods| ▸ |Anatolia| ▸ |Mysia| ▸ |Cyzicus||View Options:  |  |  | 

Ancient Greek Coins of Kyzikos, Mysia

Cyzicus was one of the great cities of the ancient world. It was said to have been founded by Pelasgians from Thessaly, according to tradition at the coming of the Argonauts; later, allegedly in 756 B.C., it received many colonists from Miletus. Owing to its advantageous position it speedily acquired commercial importance, and the gold staters of Cyzicus were a staple currency in the ancient world till they were superseded by those of Philip of Macedon. During the Peloponnesian War (431-404 B.C.) Cyzicus was subject to the Athenians and Lacedaemonians alternately. In the naval Battle of Cyzicus in 410, an Athenian fleet completely destroyed a Spartan fleet. At the peace of Antalcidas in 387, like the other Greek cities in Asia, it was made over to Persia. Alexander the Great captured it from the Persians in 334 B.C. In 74 B.C. allied with Rome, it withstood a siege by 300,000 men led by King Mithridates VI of Pontus. Rome rewarded this loyalty with territory and with municipal independence which lasted until the reign of Tiberius. When it was incorporated into the Empire, Cyzicus was made the capital of Mysia, and afterward of Hellespontus. Gallienus opened an imperial mint at Cyzicus, which continued to strike coins well into the Byzantine era. The site of Cyzicus, located on the Erdek and Bandirma roads, is protected by Turkey's Ministry of Culture.

Galerius, 1 March 305 - 5 May 311 A.D.

|Galerius|, |Galerius,| |1| |March| |305| |-| |5| |May| |311| |A.D.||follis| |(large)|
In Roman religion, every man has a genius, a presiding spirit. In De Die Natali, Censorinus says, from the moment we are born, we live under the guard and tutelage of Genius. Cities, organizations, and peoples also had a genius. On coins, we find inscriptions to the Genius of the Army, of the Senate, of the Emperor, etc. The legend GENIO POPVLI ROMANI dedicates this coin to the Genius of the Roman People. Genius' image is of a man with a cloak half covering the shoulders leaving the rest of his body naked, holding a cornucopia in one hand, and a simpulum or a patera in the other.
RT97959. Billon follis (large), Hunter V p. 65, 32 (also 2nd officina); RIC VI Cyzicus 44; SRCV IV 14516; Cohen VII 49, Choice gVF, well centered, scattered porosity, weight 5.989 g, maximum diameter 27.7 mm, die axis 0o, 2nd officina, Cyzicus (Kapu Dagh, Turkey) mint, 308 - 309 A.D.; obverse GAL VAL MAXIMIANVS P F AVG, laureate head right; reverse GENIO IMPERATORIS (to the guardian spirit of the Commander in Chief), Genius standing slightly left, head left, nude but for chlamys over shoulders and left arm, kalathos on head, pouring libations from patera in right hand, cornucopia in left hand, B lower left, MKV in exergue; $90.00 SALE PRICE $81.00
 


Maximinus II Daia, Late 309 - 30 April 313 A.D.

|Maximinus| |II|, |Maximinus| |II| |Daia,| |Late| |309| |-| |30| |April| |313| |A.D.||follis| |(large)|
"This reverse is modeled after the famous statue of the Spirit of the Roman People in the Roman Forum. It is unclear when this statue was last seen as it is now lost. Although the coins celebrate a wide range of spirits (e.g., Rome, Augustus, the Army, etc.), the basic design comes from the same statue...The act of pouring the libation to the emperor illustrates what the Christians were required to do in order not to be persecuted." -- Roman Bronze Coins From Paganism to Christianity 294-364 A.D. by Victor Failmezger
RT97966. Billon follis (large), Hunter V 46 (also 3rd officina), RIC VI Cyzicus 70 (S), SRCV IV 14849, Cohen VII 51, Choice VF, brown patina, well centered, light marks, weight 6.387 g, maximum diameter 25.4 mm, die axis 180o, 3rd officina, Cyzicus (Kapu Dagh, Turkey) mint, 311 A.D; obverse GAL VAL MAXIMINVS P F AVG, laureate head right; reverse GENIO IMPERATORIS (to the guardian spirit of the Emperor as Commander in Chief), Genius standing slightly left, head left, kalathos on head, nude but for chlamys over shoulders and left arm, pouring libations from patera in right hand, cornucopia in left hand, Γ left, three pellets arranged in a vertical line in right field, MKV in exergue; scarce; $90.00 SALE PRICE $81.00
 


Diocletian, 20 November 284 - 1 May 305 A.D.

|Diocletian|, |Diocletian,| |20| |November| |284| |-| |1| |May| |305| |A.D.||post-reform| |radiate|
In 299, Galerius established the Peace of Nisibis with the Persian king Narseh, the Romans retained dominion over Armenia and northern Mesopotamia, and the Tigris became the boundary between Rome and the Sassanid Empire.
RL94836. Copper post-reform radiate, RIC VI Cyzicus 15a, SRCV IV 12834, Cohen VI 34 var. (also draped), Hunter V 82 var. (same), gVF, full legends on flan, earthen encrustations, scratches, weight 2.422 g, maximum diameter 20.3 mm, die axis 180o, 3rd officina, Cyzicus (Kapu Dagh, Turkey) mint, c. 294/6 - 299 A.D.; obverse IMP C C VAL DIOCLETIANVS P F AVG, radiate and cuirassed bust right, seen from the front; reverse CONCORDIA MILITVM (harmony with the soldiers), Diocletian on left, standing right, baton in left hand, receiving from Victory from Jupiter with right hand, Victory standing on globe and offering wreath, Jupiter on right, standing left, nude but for paludamentum over shoulders, long scepter vertical in left hand, KΓ in center; from the Ray Nouri Collection; $60.00 SALE PRICE $54.00
 


Diocletian, 20 November 284 - 1 May 305 A.D.

|Diocletian|, |Diocletian,| |20| |November| |284| |-| |1| |May| |305| |A.D.||antoninianus|
On 1 March 293, Diocletian and Maximian appointed Constantius Chlorus and Galerius as Caesars. This is considered the beginning of the Tetrarchy, known as the Quattuor Principes Mundi ("Four Rulers of the World"). The four Tetrarchs established their capitals close to the Roman frontiers:
- Nicomedia (northwestern Asia Minor) became capital for Diocletian
- Mediolanum (Milan, near the Alps) became the capital for Maximian
- Augusta Treverorum (Trier, in Germany) became the capital for Constantius Chlorus
- Sirmium (Serbia, on the Danube border) became the capital for Galerius
RL94838. Billon antoninianus, Hunter IV 61 (also 1st officina), RIC V-2 306, Cohen VI 33, SRCV IV 12635, Choice VF, highlighting earthen deposits (desert patina), weight 4.368 g, maximum diameter 21.8 mm, die axis 180o, 1st officina, Cyzicus (Kapu Dagh, Turkey) mint, 293 - 294 A.D.; obverse IMP C C VAL DIOCLETIANVS AVG, radiate, draped bust right, from behind; reverse CONCORDIA MILITVM (harmony with the soldiers), Diocletian on left, standing right, wearing military garb, baton (or parazonium) in left hand, receiving from Victory from Jupiter with right hand, Victory standing on globe and offering wreath, Jupiter on right, standing left, nude but for paludamentum over shoulders, long scepter vertical in left hand, A in low center, XXI• in exergue; from the Ray Nouri Collection; $60.00 SALE PRICE $54.00
 


Licinius I, 11 November 308 - 18 September 324 A.D.

|Licinius| |I|, |Licinius| |I,| |11| |November| |308| |-| |18| |September| |324| |A.D.||follis|
Jupiter or Jove, Zeus to the Greeks, was the king of the gods and god of the sky and thunder, and of laws and social order. As the patron deity of ancient Rome, he was the chief god of the Capitoline Triad, with his sister and wife Juno. The father of Mars, he is, therefore, the grandfather of Romulus and Remus, the legendary founders of Rome. Emperors frequently made vows to Jupiter for protection. The Roman's believed as the king of the gods, Jupiter favored emperors and kings, those in positions of authority similar to his own.
RT97965. Billon follis, Hunter V 159 (also 6th officina), RIC VII Cyzicus 4 (R), SRCV IV 15218, Cohen VII 71, aVF, traces of silvering, tight flan, porous, weight 2.961 g, maximum diameter 20.8 mm, die axis 0o, 6th officina, Cyzicus (Kapu Dagh, Turkey) mint, 313 - 315 A.D.; obverse IMP C VAL LICIN LICINIVS P F AVG, laureate head right; reverse IOVI CONSERVATORI (to Jupiter the protector), Jupiter standing slightly left, head left, nude but for cloak over shoulder, Victory on globe in right hand, long scepter in left hand, eagle left with wreath in beak at feet on left, S right, SMK in exergue; $45.00 SALE PRICE $40.50
 







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REFERENCES|

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