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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Greek Coins| ▸ |Geographic - All Periods| ▸ |Persia & Mesopotamia||View Options:  |  |  |   

Ancient Coins of Persia and Mesopotamia

Also included on this page are coins minted under Persian rule in other regions of the Persian Empire.

Kingdom of Persis, Pakor I, 1st Century A.D.

|Kingdom| |of| |Persis|, |Kingdom| |of| |Persis,| |Pakor| |I,| |1st| |Century| |A.D.||obol|
The early kings of Persis were tributaries to the Seleucid rulers, until c. 140 B.C., when the Parthians conquered the region, according to Strabo. The Parthian Empire then took control of Persis under Arsacid king Mithridates I (c. 171 - 138 B.C.), but visibly allowed local rulers to remain, and permitted the emission of coinage bearing the title of Mlk ("King"). The last King of Persis, Artaxerxes V, defeated the Parthians and founded the Sassanian Empire.
GS92196. Silver obol, Klose-Mseler 4/28; Sunrise 609; Alram IP 597 (Pakor II); Tyler-Smith 178 (Pakor II), BMC Arabia -, VF, very broad flan, toned, light marks, weight 0.980 g, maximum diameter 16.3 mm, die axis 0o, Persepolis (Fars Province, Iran) mint, 1st century A.D.; obverse bearded bust left, wearing diadem, thick wavy hair behind; reverse triskeles, uncertain Aramaic legend around, slightly concave; ex Marc Breitsprecher; $100.00 SALE PRICE $90.00


Philip I the Arab, February 244 - End of September 249 A.D., Nisibis, Mesopotamia

|Mesopotamia| |&| |Babylonia|, |Philip| |I| |the| |Arab,| |February| |244| |-| |End| |of| |September| |249| |A.D.,| |Nisibis,| |Mesopotamia||AE| |25|NEW
Nisibis is the city of Netzivin in the Talmud. The Jews of Nisibis resisted the Roman conqueror, Trajan, to maintain Parthian rule. The city was taken only after a lengthy siege. After the it fell, Nisibis was laid waste and the massacre was so great that the houses, streets, and roads were strewn with corpses.
RP112705. Bronze AE 25, RPC Online VIII U2787; SNG Cop 242; SNG Hunterian 2446; BMC Arabia p. 122, 17; Lindgren-Kovacs 2603; McClean 9557, VF, obv. off center on a very broad flan, toned bare copper, porosity, weight 10.033 g, maximum diameter 25.3 mm, die axis 0o, Nisibis (Nusaybin, Turkey) mint, 247 - 249 A.D.; obverse AYTOK K M IOUΛI ΦIΛIΠΠOC CEB, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right, seen from behind; reverse IOY CEΠ KOΛΩ NECIBI MHT, tetrastyle temple with twisted columns; within arched central bay: statue of Tyche seated facing, ram (sign of Ares) leaping right with head turned back left above, river-god swimming right below; from the Michael Arslan Collection ; $90.00 SALE PRICE $81.00


Caracalla, 28 January 198 - 8 April 217 A.D., Edessa, Mesopotamia

|Mesopotamia| |&| |Babylonia|, |Caracalla,| |28| |January| |198| |-| |8| |April| |217| |A.D.,| |Edessa,| |Mesopotamia||AE| |20|
During the sole reign of Caracalla a city known as Colonia Metropolis Antoniniana Aurelia Alexandria in Mesopotamia (Osrhoene) issued a series of small bronze coins with Latin legends. These types were attributed by Eckhel to Carrhae and numismatists long perpetuated this attribution. New finds and papyrological evidence instead point to Edessa as the site of this colonia and the mint for these small bronze coins, struck after Caracalla deposed its king, Severus Abgar IX, in 212/213 A.D.
RP112082. Bronze AE 20, Dandrow 1/13 (O8/R10); Lindgren I 2565, Nice F, nice desert patina with highlighting earthen deposits, weight 4.642 g, maximum diameter 19.6 mm, die axis 180o, Mesopotamia, Edessa (Urfa, Sanliurfa, Turkey) mint, 212 - 8 Apr 217 A.D.; obverse M AVR ANTO-NINVS P F AVG (clockwise from upper right), laureate and bearded head right, bare shoulder visible from behind; reverse COL MET ANT-ONINIANA (clockwise from upper right), turreted, veiled, and draped bust of Tyche (city goddess) right; $80.00 SALE PRICE $72.00


Gordian III, 29 July 238 - 25 February 244 A.D., Carrhae, Mesopotamia

|Mesopotamia| |&| |Babylonia|, |Gordian| |III,| |29| |July| |238| |-| |25| |February| |244| |A.D.,| |Carrhae,| |Mesopotamia||AE| |31|
Tyche (Greek for luck; the Roman equivalent was Fortuna) was the presiding tutelary deity that governed the fortune and prosperity of a city, its destiny. Increasingly during the Hellenistic period, cities had their own specific iconic version of Tyche, wearing a mural crown (a crown like the walls of the city).
RP112711. Bronze AE 31, RPC Online VII.2 3445 (3 spec.); BMC Arabia p. 89, 55; SNG Cop 187 var. (crescent above Tyche), aVF, off center, dark tone, porosity, weight 14.920 g, maximum diameter 30.5 mm, die axis 0o, Carrhae (Altinbasak, Turkey) mint, 243 - 244 A.D.; obverse AYTOK K M ANT ΓOPΔIANOC CEB, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right, seen from behind; reverse MHTP KOΛ KAPPHNWN, draped, veiled and turreted bust of Tyche left, before her satyr Marsyas standing right on short column, carrying wineskin over shoulder; first specimen of this type handled by Forum; scarce; $80.00 SALE PRICE $72.00


Mesopotamia, Mazaces (satrap under Alexander the Great and Philip III), c. 325 - 315 B.C.

|Persia| |&| |Mesopotamia|, |Mesopotamia,| |Mazaces| |(satrap| |under| |Alexander| |the| |Great| |and| |Philip| |III),| |c.| |325| |-| |315| |B.C.||tetradrachm|
Certificate of Authenticity issued by David R. Sear.

Imitation of a 4th century Athens tetradrachm produced in Mesopotamia, probably under the authority of the Persian satrap Mazaces, whose name appears on some similar issues. He probably received the governorship of a city or district from Alexander as a reward for the peaceful surrender of Egypt in 332 B.C. This example is remarkable in having a head of Athena facing the "wrong" way, i.e. to left instead of to right as on all the prototypes.
SH08822. Silver tetradrachm, similar to cf. Mitchiner IGIS vol 1, p. 16 Type 13a 4 (owl also standing left), F, weight 16.85 g, maximum diameter 24.1 mm, die axis 45o, uncertain mint, obverse head of Athena left, wearing earring and helmet ornamented with three olive leaves; reverse AΘΕ, owl standing right head facing, olive sprig and lunar crescent in upper field to left; heavily oxidized (dark toned) surfaces; unpublished and possibly unique but similar to the attribution ref Mazaces type, Svoronos pl 23, 12 is another left facing Athena (fourree), these are the only known Athens type tetradrachms with Athena left; SOLD


Persian Empire, Lydia, Anatolia, Darios I - Xerxes II, c. 485 - 420 B.C.

|Persia| |&| |Mesopotamia|, |Persian| |Empire,| |Lydia,| |Anatolia,| |Darios| |I| |-| || |Xerxes| |II,| |c.| |485| |-| |420| |B.C.||daric|
This type was minted in Lydia, Anatolia, while under Persian control, prior to Alexander the Great's conquest. The Persian or Achaemenid Empire (c. 550 - 330 B.C.) was the largest empire in ancient history extending across Asia, Africa and Europe, including Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan, parts of Central Asia, Asia Minor, Thrace and Macedonia, much of the Black Sea coastal regions, Iraq, northern Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Palestine and Israel, Lebanon, Syria, and much of ancient Egypt as far west as Libya.Persian Empire
SH12099. Gold daric, Carradice Type IIIb, Group A/B (pl. XIII, 27); Meadows, Administration 321; BMC Arabia pl. XXIV, 26; Sunrise 24, SNG Cop 275, SGCV II 4679, Choice EF, weight 8.284 g, maximum diameter 15.3 mm, c. 485 - 420 B.C.; obverse kneeling-running figure of the Great King right, bearded, wearing crown and kidaris, a quiver at his shoulder, transverse spear downward in right hand, bow in extended left hand; reverse irregular approximately rectangular punch; SOLD


Macedonian Kingdom, Alexander the Great, 323 - 317 B.C.

|Alexander| |the| |Great|, |Macedonian| |Kingdom,| |Alexander| |the| |Great,| |323| |-| |317| |B.C.||stater|
This coin was an early posthumous issue, struck during the nominal rule the puppet kings Philip III (Alexander the Great's brother) & Alexander IV (Alexander the Great's son), under one of the Macedonian satraps in Babylon: Archon, Dokimos, or Seleukos I. The regent Perdiccas suspected Archon of colluding in the theft of Alexander's corpse and, in 321 B.C., sent Dokimos to replace him. Archon was defeated and died from battle wounds. Seleucus, made satrap by Perdiccas' rival Antipater, arrived in Babylon in October or November 320 B.C. and defeated Dokimos.
SL111465. Gold stater, Price 3691, Mller Alexander 1271, NGC CH XF, strike 5/5, surface 4/5, fine style (6558782-001), weight 8.569 g, maximum diameter 17.8 mm, die axis 0o, Mesopotamia, Babylon (Hillah, Iraq) mint, early posthumous issue, c. 323 - 317 B.C.; obverse helmeted head of Athena right, crested Corinthian helmet ornamented with a coiled serpent, wearing pearl necklace, M behind; reverse Nike standing left, wreath in right hand, stylus in left hand, BAΣIΛEΩΣ (king) downward on left, AΛEΞANΔPOY (Alexander) downward on right, ΛY low inner right; ex Harlan J. Berk; NGC| Lookup; SOLD


Macedonian Kingdom, Philip III Arrhidaeus and Alexander IV, 323 - 317 B.C., Struck by Archon, Dokimos, or Seleukos I

|Macedonian| |Kingdom|, |Macedonian| |Kingdom,| |Philip| |III| |Arrhidaeus| |and| |Alexander| |IV,| |323| |-| |317| |B.C.,| |Struck| |by| |Archon,| |Dokimos,| |or| |Seleukos| |I||stater|
This coin was struck under one of the Macedonian satraps in Babylon: Archon, Dokimos, or Seleukos I. Perdiccas suspected Archon of colluding in the theft of Alexander's corpse and, in 321 B.C., sent Dokimos to replace him. Archon was defeated and died from battle wounds. Seleucus, made satrap by Perdiccas' rival Antipater, arrived in Babylon in October or November 320 B.C. and defeated Dokimos.
SH54774. Gold stater, Price P203, Mller Alexander P116, aEF, weight 8.564 g, maximum diameter 18.0 mm, die axis 90o, Mesopotamia, Babylon (Hillah, Iraq) mint, c. 323 - 317 B.C.; obverse head of Athena right in crested Corinthian helmet ornamented with Griffin; reverse BAΣIΛΕΩΣ ΦIΛIΠΠOY, Nike standing left, wreath in right hand, facing head of Helios below left, [KY] below right; Struck under Archon, Dokimos, or Seleukos I, circa 323-318/7 BC.; SOLD


Persian Empire, Lydia, Anatolia, Darios I to Xerxes II, c. 485 - 420 B.C.

|Persian| |Lydia|, |Persian| |Empire,| |Lydia,| |Anatolia,| |
Darios| |I| |to| |Xerxes| |II,| |c.| |485| |-| |420| |B.C.||daric|
This type was minted in Lydia, Anatolia, while under Persian control, prior to Alexander the Great's conquest. The Persian or Achaemenid Empire (c. 550 - 330 B.C.) was the largest empire in ancient history extending across Asia, Africa and Europe, including Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan, parts of Central Asia, Asia Minor, Thrace and Macedonia, much of the Black Sea coastal regions, Iraq, northern Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Palestine and Israel, Lebanon, Syria, and much of ancient Egypt as far west as Libya.Persian Empire
SH87857. Gold daric, Carradice Type IIIb, Group A/B (pl. XIII, 27); Meadows, Administration 321; BMC Arabia pl. XXIV, 26; Sunrise 24; Lydo-Milesian standard, gVF, underlying luster, weight 8.309 g, maximum diameter 18.3 mm, Sardes (Sart, Turkey) mint, c. 485 - 420 B.C.; obverse kneeling-running figure of the Great King right, bearded, crowned, wearing kidaris and kandys, quiver on shoulder, transverse spear downward in right hand, bow in extended left hand; reverse oblong irregular rectangular incuse punch; ex CNG auction 109, lot 368; SOLD


Kingdom of Persis, Vadfradad III, c. 100 - 50 B.C.

|Kingdom| |of| |Persis|, |Kingdom| |of| |Persis,| |Vadfradad| |III,| |c.| |100| |-| |50| |B.C.||drachm|
"But afterwards different princes occupied different palaces; some, as was natural, less sumptuous, after the power of Persis had been reduced first by the Macedonians, and secondly still more by the Parthians. For although the Persians have still a kingly government, and a king of their own, yet their power is very much diminished, and they are subject to the king of Parthia." - Strabo, XV.3.3
GS06322. Silver drachm, Alram IP 561, EF+, boldly struck with high relief dies, weight 4.07 g, maximum diameter 18.0 mm, die axis 135o, Persepolis (Fars Province, Iran) mint, c. 100 - 50 B.C.; obverse bust right wearing satrapal headdress; reverse king standing between fire altar and eagle standard, Ahura Mazda above, Aramaic legend around; SOLD




  



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REFERENCES

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