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Last additions - Enodia
8e9CMi2bNkZ3YS4c9rHWzES56mADRG001.jpeg
Syracuse, Sicily27 views317-289 BC (Reign of Agathokles)
AE17 (16mm, 3.29g)
O: Head of Persephone left, wreathed in grain.
R: Bull charging right; club and ΛY above, IE (magistrate) in exergue.
HGC 2, 1498; CNS II, 200
Rare
ex Praefectus Coins

A rare variant with the bull charging right.

2 commentsEnodiaJun 04, 2019
20190408_171251.jpg
Taras, Calabria 10 views302-228 BC
AR Diobol (11mm, 0.82g)
O: Head of Athena right, wearing crested Attic helmet decorated with wing.
R: Herakles standing right, wrestling the Nemean lion; club behind, TAPAN above.
cf Vlasto 1365; HN Italy 976
Scarce
ex Savoca Coins

2 commentsEnodiaApr 10, 2019
Stratonikeia.jpg
Stratonikeia, Caria36 viewscirca 100 BC
AE 20 (20mm, 6.38g)
O: Lareate head of Hekate right, wearing crescent moon crown.
R: Nike advancing right, holding palm and wreath; ΣTPATO above, [NIK]EΩN below.
cf SNG Cop 489; cf Sear 4942; BMC 151,31
Scarce
ex Aegean Numismatics

Stratonikeia was located in SW Asia Minor, about 11km from Lagina, the largest known sanctuary of the goddess Hekate, "whom Zeus honored above all others" (Hesiod). It is likely that the cult of Hekate originated in this area a millennium or more before Her introduction into Greek religion at the conclusion of the Titanomachy, the legendary battle between the Titans and Olympians.
During an annual ritual the Priestess would lead a procession from the polis to Lagina where she would open the sanctuary with a sacred key. This key would eventually become one of the attributes depicted on later images of Hekate.
5 commentsEnodiaFeb 27, 2019
2dWMKAj95wpXR8fDeG6746WqD2b3n4.jpg
Thebai, Thessaly8 views302-286 BC
AE 19 (19mm, 5.53g)
O: Wreathed and veiled head of Demeter left, within dotted border.
R: Bridled horse prancing right; ΘHBAIΩN above, X below.
Rogers 552; BCD Thessaly II, 762.1-2; SNG Munchen 185
From the BCD collection; ex Aegean Numismatics

1 commentsEnodiaFeb 04, 2019
2dWMKAj95wpXR8fDeG6746WqD2b3n4A.jpg
Thebai, Thessaly23 views302-286 BC
AE 19 (19 mm, 5.53g)
O: Wreathed and veiled head of Demeter left, within dotted border.
R: Bridled horse prancing right; ΘHBAIΩN above, X below.
Rogers 552; BCD Thessaly II, 762.1-2; SNG Munchen 185
From the BCD collection; ex Aegean Numismatics
3 commentsEnodiaFeb 01, 2019
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Pantikapaion, Thrace29 views304-250 BC
AE 20 (20mm, 5.81g)
O: Head of Pan left, wreathed in ivy.
R: Bow and arrow, ΠAN below.
MacDonald 116.1; SNG Poland II; NM Warsaw 178-79
ex Forvm Auctions (Bartosz Awianowicz)

3 commentsEnodiaJan 31, 2019
Vlasto_1416.jpg
Taras, Calabria26 views302-228 BC (Period VIII)
AR Diobol (13mm, 0.87g)
O: Head of Athena left, wearing crested Corinthian helmet.
R: Herakles standing left, strangling the Nemean lion; club behind, TAPAN(?) to left.
cf Vlasto 1416-19; HN Italy 1064
Rare
ex Nomos (Obolos II)

This coin was sold as being from Teate, Apulia and Vlasto claims that this type was minted "in alliance with Teate". Both of these opinions are based on the ethnic reading TIATI, which it may, but I am not entirely convinced that it doesn't in fact read TAPAN.
In either case it is a very scarce type with Herakles facing left in his struggle with the Nemean lion, and is very similar to my specimen of the Vlasto 1415 diobol but without the Ionic capital below Herakles' club.


1 commentsEnodiaDec 24, 2018
15421707223711696637472-1.jpg
Terina, Bruttium 35 viewscirca 300 BC
AR Drachm (16mm, 2.21g)
O: Head of nymph Terina left; triskeles behind, TEPINAIΩN left.
R: Winged Nike seated left on cippus, holding bird in extended right hand; star to left.
Holloway & Jenkins 111; HN Italy 2642
ex Bertolami Fine Arts

2 commentsEnodiaNov 14, 2018
1542171609434651265871.jpg
Koinon, Thessaly23 viewsPseudo-autonomous
41-54 AD (Time of Claudius)
AE Assarion (17.5mm, 4.18g)
Amtigonos (Strategos)
O: Draped bust of Livia right; ΘEΣΣ-AΛΩN around.
R: Hekate advancing right, holding torch in each hand; monogram to right, ΣTPATHΓANTIΓON-OY around.
RPC I, 1438; BCD Thessaly II, 928
ex Frank Kovacs; ex Mark Breitsprecher
1 commentsEnodiaNov 14, 2018
Sybaris.jpg
Sybaris, Lucania54 views550-510 BC
AR Obol (10mm, 0.44g)
O: Bull (Ox?) standing left, head turned back to right; VM in exergue.
R: Large MV monogram; four pellets around.
SNG ANS 853; HN Italy 1739; Hands Type I, IV
ex Tom Vossen

This coin dates from the original Greek colony, Sybaris I, before its destruction by the Krotones in 511-510 BC.
The MV monogram on the reverse actually reads 'SY' for Sybaris, and I believe the VM in exergue on the obverse is 'MV' retrograde.
The bull device seen on all early types from Sybaris, and later on the coins of her colonies at Poseidonia and Thurii, may in fact be a white ox at the mother city.
4 commentsEnodiaSep 08, 2018
Taras_crab.jpg
Taras, Calabria40 views4th-3rd century BC
AR Diobol (12mm, 1.13g)
O: Head of Athena right, wearing crested Attic helmet decorated with Skylla.
R: Herakles kneeling right, wrestling the Nemean lion; crab above, club behind.
HN Italy 976; Vlasto ----; Cote ---; SNG France ----; McGill ---
Scarce
ex Pavlos S. Pavlou

A scarce variety with the crab control mark, unlisted in most major references.
2 commentsEnodiaAug 08, 2018
V_157.jpg
Taras, Calabria33 views473-450 BC
AR Drachm (Half Nomos) (16mm, 3.53g)
O: Forepart of hippocamp with pointed wings right; TAPAΣ (retrograde) counterclockwise behind, scallop shell below.
R: Head of nymph Satyra right; TA clockwise behind, all within incuse circle.
Vlasto 157-59; Cote 60; HN Italy 839; SNG France 1610; SNG ANS 846
Rare
ex Savoca Coins

A rare early drachm, sometimes referred to as a 'half nomos'. The hippocamp could be seen as a Pegasus, but that device was unknown in Tarentine coinage while the hippocamp was quite common, and the scallop shell certainly gives credence to that idea.
Alfred Hands places this type much earlier, perhaps as early as 520 BC, while Ratto (the Cote catalog) suggests that the nymph is actually the obverse due to the retrograde ethnic.

1 commentsEnodiaAug 06, 2018
Lysimacheia_AE~0.jpg
Lysimacheia, Thrace4 views309-220 BC
AE 21 (21mm, 8.14g)
O: Wreathed and veiled head of Demeter right.
R: Nike standing left, holding wreath; ΛYΣIMA[XEΩN] around to left.
SNG Cop 905; Sear 1621; BMC 3, 6
ex Romae Aeternae Numismatics
EnodiaJun 27, 2018
Teos.jpg
Teos, Ionia40 views320-294 BC
AR Diobol (10mm, 0.92g)
Mentor magistrate.
O: Griffin seated right, with left forepaw raised.
R: Lyre; MENTΩP (magistrate) downward to right.
Kinns 95; SNG Kayhan 611v; Imhoof 126A
ex MRB Coins
4 commentsEnodiaJun 27, 2018
V_975.jpg
Taras, Calabria37 views212-209 BC (Period X - The Punic Occupation)
AR Half-Shekel (Reduced Nomos) (19mm, 3.28g)
Sogenis magistrate.
O: Nude youth on horseback to left, crowning horse with wreath; IΩ behind, ΣΩΓE - NHΣ (magistrate) in two lines below.
R: Taras astride dolphin to left, holding cornucopiae in right arm and Nike who crowns him with wreath in left; TAPA[Σ] below.
Vlasto 975-77; Evans X, B-1; SNG France 2064; McGill II, 119-20; HN Italy 1079
Very Scarce
ex Praefectus Coins

At half the weight of the previous ‘didrachms’ from Taras, this half-shekel coin was minted during the Punic occupation of the city from 212-209 BC.
The story of Hannibal’s capture of Tarentum is fascinating, but of far too great a scope to cover here. Courage and endurance, intrigue and treachery all played a part in the Carthaginians desperate need of a southern naval port to continue Hannibal’s dream of conquering the Italian peninsula. Yet after an occupation of three years he was forced to withdraw from the city, virtually ending the second Punic War. However with a naval command post and a way to access reinforcements and supplies from Carthage, who knows what shape the history of Rome might have taken?

1 commentsEnodiaJun 26, 2018
Key.jpg
Bronze Key26 viewsRoman Empire
circa 3rd-4th century AD
33x15mm, 5.97g
ex Forvm Auctions
2 commentsEnodiaJun 19, 2018
Poseidonia.jpg
Poseidonia, Lucania29 views350-290 BC
AE 16 (16x13mm, 3.80g)
O: Poseidon, nude, advancing left, Brandishing trident over head.
R: Bull butting right, waves below; dolphin right in ex.
HN Italy 1167; SNG IV Fitzwilliam 566
Rare
ex Colosseum Coin Exchange; ex Forvm Ancient Coins

Poseidonia was founded shortly before 600 BC by colonists from Sybaris, and archeological evidence shows that they, like the Sybarites, enjoyed fine living.
The archaic style of the obverse remained even into the classical era, however this coin is quite rare in that Poseidon is facing left, rather than to the right as on almost all other examples from this city. The bull on the reverse, typical of the coins of Sybaris, honored the mother colony.
Poseidonia came under Roman control in 273 after the defeat of Pyrrhus, at which time the name was changed to Paestum.
1 commentsEnodiaJun 14, 2018
Lysimacheia_AE.jpg
Lysimacheia, Thrace27 views309-220 BC
AE 21 (21mm, 8.14g)
O: Wreathed and veiled head of Demeter right.
R: Nike standing left, holding wreath; ΛYΣIMA[XEΩN] around to left.
SNG Cop 905; Sear 1621; BMC 3, 6
ex Romae Aeternae Numismatics

1 commentsEnodiaJun 05, 2018
V_1047.jpg
Taras, Calabria39 views302-280 BC (Period VI)
AR Drachm (17mm, 3.18g)
Zor... magistrate.
O: Head of Athena right, wearing crested Attic helmet decorated with Skylla hurling stone.
R: Owl with folded wings standing right; TAP behind, ZOP (magistrate) and club to right.
Vlasto 1055; SNG France 1936-37; HN Italy 975; Sear 367v
ex TN Numismatics
2 commentsEnodiaMay 25, 2018
Taras_Herakles.jpg
Taras, Calabria52 views325-280 BC
AR Diobol (11mm, 1.07g)
O: Head of young Herakles right, wearing lion skin headdress.
R: Herakles standing right, strangling the Nemean lion; TH above, club and astragalos behind, Φ between legs.
Vlasto 1355; Cote 190; HN Italy 978; Sear 352
Scarce
ex CDMA

Here once again is the battle scene being played out between Herakles and the Nemean lion, however on this coin we see the head of a relatively young Herakles in place of the usual helmeted Athena.
This variation is much scarcer than most of the Athena types.
3 commentsEnodiaMay 10, 2018
Vlasto_1123.jpg
Taras, Calabria51 views520-473 BC
AR Hexante (5mm, 0,11g)
O: Wheel of four spokes.
R: Wheel of four spokes.
Vlasto 1123; SNG France 1620; HN Italy 978
Rare
ex Goduto

The spoked wheel motif was fairly common on archaic Greek coins, and its simplicity of design was especially suited to diminutive silver coins such as this one.




2 commentsEnodiaApr 30, 2018
Taras.jpg
Taras, Calabria57 views302-281 BC (Period VI)
AR Didrachm (20.5mm, 7.88g)
Arethon magistrate.
O: Naked boy of androgynous aspect crowning horse standing right, left foreleg raised; ΣA above, APE/ΘΩN (magistrate) in two lines below.
R: Phalanthos riding dolphin left, holding tripod in extended right hand; TAPAΣ around to right, CAΣ below.
Vlasto 666; Evans VI, A-1; Cote 321; McGill II, 59; SNG France 1869; HN Italy 957; SNG Cop 862; SNG ANS 1046-50
ex Germania Inferior Numismatics

Struck between the time of Kleonymos and the coming of Pyrrhus, Period VI represents the first appearance of the full length magistrate signatues on Tarentine coinage, in this case one Arethon.
This type (along with Vlasto 836) is possibly the most common didrachm in the entire series. Still, this specimen is very well centered with a full tripod showing on the flan, and has some nice golden highlights which i find quite appealing.
4 commentsEnodiaApr 09, 2018
Pherai2.jpg
Pherai, Thessaly45 viewsLate 4th century BC
AE14 (14mm, 2.59g)
O: Wreathed head of Hekate right; torch before.
R: Lion's head fountain right, spouting water; fish below, ΦEPAIOYN around to right.
Rogers 514; HGC4, 568; BCD Thessaly II, 691.1
From the BCD collection. ex Ken Dorney

5 commentsEnodiaApr 03, 2018
Anazar~0.jpg
Anazarbus, Cilicia8 viewsPseudo-autonomous
113/114 AD (Reign of Trajan)
AE Assaria (19mm, 4.53g)
O: Veiled and draped bust of Demeter right; two grain ears and poppy head before.
R: Veiled bust of Artemis Perasia right, wearing polos; torch before.
Ziegler 101; SNG France 2026
From the B/N collection. ex Munzhandlung Ritter
1 commentsEnodiaJan 25, 2018
Pherai~1.jpg
Pherai, Thessaly16 views404-339 BC
AE Trichalkon (19.5mm, 6.64g)
O: Head of lion right.
R: Hekate riding side-saddle right with head turned back on horse prancing left, holding torches in both hands;
Rogers 517; Weber 2920; Sear 2206
ex Wayne Phillips; ex Ancient Imports

"... Thou mixture rank, of midnight weeds collected,
With Hecate' s ban thrice blasted, thrice infected,
Thy natural magic and dire property,
On wholesome life usurp immediately."
~ William Shakespeare (Hamlet)
EnodiaJan 24, 2018
Anazar.jpg
Anazarbus, Cilicia28 viewsPseudo-autonomous
113/114 AD (Reign of Trajan)
AE Assaria (19mm, 4.53g)
O: Veiled and draped bust of Demeter right; two grain ears and poppy head before.
R: Veiled bust of Artemis Perasia right, wearing polos; torch before.
Ziegler 101; SNG France 2026
From the B/N collection. ex Munzhandlung Ritter
4 commentsEnodiaJan 20, 2018
Pherai.jpg
Pherai, Thessaly29 views404-369 BC
AE 13 (13.4mm, 1.85g)
O: Wreathed head of Hekate left, wearing triangular pendant earring.
R: Lion head fountain right, spouting water; ΦEPAIOYN around to right.
Rogers 516; BCD Thessaly II 691.2
ex Savoca Coin

"Tender-hearted Hekate, bright coiffed, the daughter of Persaios."
~ Homeric Hymn to Demeter (2)
3 commentsEnodiaJan 11, 2018
Lesbos.jpg
Uncertain Mint, Lesbos31 views500-450 BC
Billion 1/10 Stater (10mm, 1.18g)
O: Two boar's heads confronted, creating the illusion of a single boar head facing.
R: Incuse square.
SNG von Aulock 7712; SNG Munchen 645; Sear 3488
ex Forvm Ancient Coins

An unusual little coin from the island of Lesbos off the coast of Asia Minor. The very inventive 6th century BC engraver of this die has created an illusion which is quite 'outside the box' for an ancient coin, as the two confronted boar's heads can also be seen as a single facing boar. And how cool is that?

2 commentsEnodiaDec 08, 2017
Cales.jpg
Cales, Campania33 views265-240 BC
AE 22 (22mm, 6.32g)
O: Head of Athean left, wearing crested Corinthian helmet, all within dotted border.
R: Cock standing right, star behind; CALENΩ downward to right, all within dotted border.
Sambon 916; HN Italy 435; SNG ANS 188; SNG Cop 322; Sear 548
ex Forvm Ancient Coins

This very common type, with Athena left and the cock/star reverse, was minted throughout the region, including Cales, Suessa Aurunca, Teanum Sinicinum in Campania and Aquinum in Latium, with only the ethnic varying. Speculation is that this suggests a monetary alliance between the various cities, but given the history of Campanian coining I wonder if a common mint may have produced them all, as we have seen with the MFB coins of Nola, Hyria and Neapolis?


2 commentsEnodiaDec 08, 2017
V_1315.jpg
Taras, Calabria35 views380-334 BC
AR Diobol (12mm, 1.24g)
O: Head of Athena right, wearing crested Attic helmet decorated with Skylla hurling a stone.
R: Herakles kneeling right, strangling the Nemean lion; A above.
Vlasto 1315; HN Italy 976
From the D. Alighieri collection. ex CNG

I acquired this coin mainly for the provenance, but also because, despite the fact that the Vlasto catalog claims it to be "of barbarous style", I think the fully crested portrait of Athena is quite pretty.





2 commentsEnodiaNov 18, 2017
V_1118.jpg
Taras, Calabria96 views480-470 BC
AR Hexante (5mm, 0.08g)
O: Scallop shell with 7 teeth, within linear border.
R: Wheel with four spokes.
Vlasto 1118; Cote 11; SNG France 1617; HN Italy 836
Rare
From the E.E. Clain-Stephanelli collection. ex Naville Numismatics

How many angels can dance on the head of a pin? Only a few less than can dance on this coin!
This tiny and rare little coin is now the smallest in my collection. Being but 5mm and weighing less than 1/10th of a gram, this coin is about the size the LED 'Power On' light on a small device.


4 commentsEnodiaOct 20, 2017
Vlasto_1850.jpg
Taras, Calabria37 views281-209 BC
AE 14 (13.5mm, 1.85g)
O: Scallop shell with 11 teeth.
R: Kithara with six strings; olive branch to left.
Vlasto 1850; HN Italy 1092; SNG France- ---; McGill ---; Cote ---
Very Rare
ex Agora Auctions

This very rare bronze is the last 'official' Tarentine coin listed in Vlasto's collection. The lyre is, of course, symbolic of Apollo, and while such a reference is not typically seen on the more common coins of Taras, the cult of Apollo Hyakanthus was strong in the city (as well as in the mother city of Sparta) and may be seen represented on the earliest (and very rare) incuse coinage struck here, as well as various gold issues.
While not stunning in its beauty, I have only found two other specimens online, and so was very glad to find one for myself.



2 commentsEnodiaOct 20, 2017
Syracuse_Drachm.JPG
Syracuse, Reign of Dionysius I 38 views405-367 BC (struck circa 380 BC)
Æ Drachm (32mm, 30.12g)
O: Head of Athena left, wearing Corinthian helmet decorated with olive wreath; ΣYPA before.
R: Sea-star between two dolphins.
CNS II, 62-9; HGC 2, 1436; SNG ANS 455-469; Sear 1189 (Timoleon)
ex Saint Paul Antiques
3 commentsEnodiaAug 11, 2017
Vlasto_1431.JPG
Taras, Calabria36 views302-228 BC
AR Diobol (11.5mm, 0.85g)
O: Head of Athena left, wearing crested Corinthian helmet.
R: Herakles kneeling left on back of Nemean lion and holding him by the tail, about to beat lion with club held overhead; owl below.
Vlasto 1431; cf McGill II, 180; SNG ANS 1463; SNG France 2129; SNG ANS 1463; HN Italy 1065
ex Eukratides Ancient Numismatics

Here we see Herakles, having strangled the Nemean lion into submission, about to deliver the decisive blow. His knee is on its back and he has the lion by the tail, club raised to bash the life out of the beast.
2 commentsEnodiaAug 01, 2017
Herakleia_Owl.JPG
Herakleia, Lucania89 views281-278 BC
AR Drachm (16.5mm, 3.82g)
O: Head of Athena, three-quarters facing right, wearing crested Attic helmet decorated with Scylla throwing stone; Φ behind.
R: Owl with wings closed, standing right on olive branch; club to right, |-HPAKΛEIΩN above, ΣΩΣI to left.
Van Keuren 114; HN Italy 1411
Scarce
ex NAC

The colony of Herakleia was a joint venture between the cities of Taras and Thurii, founded in 432 BC and intended to encourage peace between the two embattled polis’ and show a united front against the indigenous tribes of southern Italy. To this end Herakleia became the center of the newly formed Italiote League, probably around 380. This alliance consisted of emissaries from the Greek cities of Kroton, Metapontum, Velia, Thurii, and most notably Taras.
A century later, the period of this coin, Pyrrhus defeated the Roman Consul Laevinius near here, causing the Romans to try a different strategy. A political treaty was struck in 278, granting very favorable terms to the Greek city, and Herakleia became an ally of Rome. As a result the headquarters of the Italiote League was moved to Taras.
8 commentsEnodiaJul 15, 2017
Ephesus_Obol.JPG
Ephesus, Ionia24 views500-420 BC
AR Diobol (11mm, 1.06g)
O: Bee with curved wings and volute-shaped antennae; E - Φ flanking.
R: Quadripartite incuse square.
SNG Kayhan 125; Sear 3517v (Drachm)
ex Tom Vossen
1 commentsEnodiaJul 11, 2017
Ephesus_AR.JPG
Ephesus, Ionia58 views390-320 BC
AR Diobol (10mm, 1.02g)
O: Bee with straight wings, within dotted border.
R: Confronted heads of two stags; EΦ above.
SNG Cop 242-43; SNG von Aulock 1835; SNG München 32; Sear 4375v; BMC Ionia 53, 53; 
ex Forvm Ancient Coins

The bee was sacred to the goddess Artemis, whose famous sanctuary at Ephesus was tended by Her priestesses, known collectively as Melissae, a word which translates as ‘bee’, or by some accounts ‘honey gatherer’. It is no surprise then that the coins of this city should feature the bee on their obverse.
5 commentsEnodiaJul 07, 2017
Vlasto_855.JPG
Taras, Calabria48 views272-235 BC (Period VIII - The Roman Alliance I)
AR Didrachm (18.5mm, 6.50g)
O: Nude youth on horseback right, placing wreath on horse's head; ΦI behind, I-ΩΠ-YPO-[Σ] (magistrate) below.
R: Taras riding dolphin left, holding cornucopiae and trident; bee to right, Τ-ΑΡΑΣ below.
Vlasto 855; Evans VIII, B2; McGill II, 99; Cote 490-92; HN Italy 1029 SNG ANS 1183
ex Dr. Busso Peus; ex Germania Inferior Numismatics

Evans calls the insect on this reverse a cicada, a very important symbol in ancient times (see J.C.B Petropolous’ marvelous work ‘Heat and Lust; Hesiod’s Midsummer Festival Scene Revisited’, a very insightful look at ancient agricultural and fertility practices). However Vlasto lists this as a bee, and I tend to think this is likely. It sure looks more like a bee to me.
It’s a real pity that the obverse is struck off-center here, as the artistic and natural rendering of the horse is not typical of these late period didrachms.
3 commentsEnodiaJun 28, 2017
Vlasto_1596.JPG
Taras, Calabria44 views325-280 BC
AR Hemilitron (10mm, 0.39g, 11h)
O: Scallop Shell.
R: Dolphin leaping right; hare below.
Vlasto 1596; HN Italy 980
ex Saint Paul Antiques
3 commentsEnodiaJun 15, 2017
Eion_AR.JPG
Eion, Macedonia54 views500-437 BC
AR Trihemiobol (12mm, 0.92g)
O: Goose standing right, head turned back; lizard and H above, all within dotted border.
R: Quadripartite incuse square.
cf SNG ANS 276; Sear 1295v (lizard)
ex Antike & Klassische Numismatik

Some sources name this bird a swan, while most suggest a goose. No matter, since both are of the same family, and both were indigenous to Macedonia.
Perhaps more importantly though, both species are known to mate for life, and so were sacred to Hera, goddess of marriage, and also to me.
Here in Oregon, the departure of the geese each year heralds the coming of Spring, as their arrival later in the year forebode the inevitable Winter.
5 commentsEnodiaJun 06, 2017
Soloi~0.JPG
Soloi, Cilicia10 viewsCirca 100-66 BC
Æ19 (19mm, 5.02g)
O: Turreted, veiled, and draped bust of Tyche right.
R: Filleted piloi of the Dioskouroi; stars above, ΣOΛEΩN and EΠ below.
SNG France 1206v (monogram); cf SNG Levante 866; Sear 5624v (monogram)
ex Gac Antiquity
EnodiaJun 05, 2017
Soloi.JPG
Soloi, Cilicia28 viewsCirca 100-66 BC
Æ19 (19mm, 5.02g)
O: Turreted, veiled, and draped bust of Tyche right.
R: Filleted piloi of the Dioskouroi; stars above, ΣOΛEΩN and EΠ below.
SNG France 1206v (monogram); cf SNG Levante 866; Sear 5624v (monogram)
ex Gac Antiquity
1 commentsEnodiaJun 05, 2017
Kyzikos_AE.JPG
Kyzikos, Mysia27 views2nd-1st century BC
AE19 (19mm, 5.42g)
O: Head of Persephone right, wearing wreath of grain.
R: KY-ZI above and below monogram, all within oak wreath.
Sear 3864; BMC 148
ex Wayne Philips; ex Ancient Imports

Persephone
I saw a tender maiden plucking flowers
Once, long ago, in the bright morning hours;
And then from heaven I saw a sudden cloud
Fall swift and dark, and heard her cry aloud.
Again I looked, but from my open door
My anxious eyes espied the maid no more;
The cloud had vanished, bearing her away
To underlands beyond the smiling day.
(From a fragment by Sappho)
2 commentsEnodiaJun 04, 2017
Neapolis_AR.JPG
Neapolis, Campania32 views275-250 BC
AR Didrachm (20mm, 6.92g)
O: Diademed head of the nymph Parthenope left, wearing triple earring; poppy head behind.
R: Man-faced bull standing right; Nike flying right above, crowning bull; IΣ below, [N]EAΠOΛITΩ[N] in ex.
Sambon 510; HN Italy 586; SNG ANS 400; Hands Class VI; Sear 309v (eagle head)
ex Numisantique

The Greek colony on what is now known as the Bay of Naples was one of the earliest in Italy, originally established by settlers from Euboea, and possibly named Parthenope after the local Nymph. The city was later re-founded nearby and renamed Neapolis, or ‘New City’. Its proximity to Rome brought Italian customs to the colony, while conversely bringing a heavy Greek influence to the Romans.
It is not surprising then that Neapolis was one of the first Greek colonies to ally itself with Rome near the end of the fourth century BC, and was instrumental in repelling Hannibal a hundred years later.
3 commentsEnodiaJun 02, 2017
Velia_Owl.JPG
Velia, Lucania41 views465-440 BC (Period II: Pre-Athena Group)
AR Drachm (15mm, 3.52g)
O: Head of nymph right, wearing beaded necklace.
R: Owl with closed wing perched right on olive branch, head facing; YEΛH behind.
Williams 79; Hands Class VI; HN Italy 1265; Sear 251
ex Munzen & Medaillen GmbH

The first coins minted at Velia in the late 6th century BC were archaic drachms featuring a feeding lion on the obverse and a simple incuse square on the reverse.
The nymph head drachms such as this example, which Williams designates as ‘pre-Athena types‘, can be dated fairly accurately to the period immediately following the Battle of Cumae in 474 BC.
The combined fleet of Cyme and Syracuse defeated the Etruscans in a great naval battle off the coast of southern Italy, greatly weakening Etruscan influence in the region and thereby empowering Rome. The resulting economic boost allowed Poseidonia to begin coining again circa 470, followed by Terina in Bruttium and finally Velia. It was also around this time that Velia’s famous lion series of didrachms first appeared, and would continue for the next two centuries.
3 commentsEnodiaJun 01, 2017
Vlasto_847.JPG
Taras, Calabria33 views272-235 BC (Period VIII - The Roman Alliance I)
AR Didrachm (19mm, 6.36g)
O: Naked youth on horseback left, crowning horse with right hand; ∆I above, ΦIΛΩ / TAC in two lines below.
R: Phalanthos on dolphin left, holding kantharos and distaff; cock standing left behind, TAPAΣ below.
Vlasto 847; Evans VIII, A11; Cote 485; McGill II, 96; HN Italy 1024; SNG ANS 1173-77
ex Numisantique

The cock on the reverse of this coin may be a reference to Apollo, or might symbolize ‘a new dawn rising’, possibly referring to Taras’ recent alliance with their old nemesis, Rome.
However it is more likely that this is simply a symbol of the magistrate under whom this coin was struck, in this case one Philotos, which was not an uncommon practice on these post-Pyrrhic didrachms of Taras.
1 commentsEnodiaMay 31, 2017
Vlasto_822.JPG
Taras, Calabria46 views272-235 BC (Period VIII - The Roman Alliance I)
AR Didrachm (19mm, 6.18g, 2h).
O: Youth on horseback left, crowning horse; cornucopia in field to right, |-APEAC (magistrate) below.
R: Taras riding dolphin left, holding kantharos in extended right hand and upright trident in left; POΛY behind, ΤΑΡΑΣ below..
Vlasto 822; Evans VIII, A4; Cote 456; HN Italy 997; cf Sear 374
From the W. H. Guertin Collection; ex CNG

The symbolism of the cornucopia has many origins in ancient lore, from the story of Zeus and Amaltheia to that of Herakles and the river-god Acheloos. Dionysus is also associated with the “horn of plenty”.
All of these deities were venerated at Taras, so the appearance of the cornucopia on this coin may be connected to any of the three, although the kantharos in Taras‘ extended right hand on the reverse makes the cult of Dionysus quite compelling.
George Brauer Jr. (‘Taras: Its History and Coinage’) suggests that the cornucopia can represent “the fruits of war”, and while the city of Taras was constantly fighting one battle or another during its long history, I believe the commonly seen Nike would be a more appropriate symbol of a military victory, and the passive nature of this particular type, with Taras holding his trident in a decidedly non-threatening posture, also seems to argue against this idea. In addition the fact that the city had just been subdued by Rome would apparently put Brauer’s theory to rest, at least in this case.
Of course the answer may be as simple as a local celebration of a particularly prosperous year, or a thank you to Demeter for an abundant harvest. We may never know for certain, but this kind of speculation can be half the fun of collecting!
4 commentsEnodiaMay 11, 2017
Seleukid_AE.JPG
Seleukid Kingdom, Reign of Antiochos VI Dionysus29 views145-142 BC
AE17 Serrate (17.5mm, 4.29g)
O: Diademed and radiate head right.
R: Panther advancing left with paw raised, holding palm branch in mouth; BAΣIΛEΩΣ
ANTIOXOY and ΣTA above, star behind, EΠIΦANOYΣ ∆IONYΣOY in exergue.
SNG Spaer 1784; Houghton 241v (cornucopiae); Sear 7083
ex FortunA (Forvm Auctions)
3 commentsEnodiaMay 06, 2017
Mesembria_AE.JPG
Mesembria, Thrace29 views250-175 BC
AE19 (19mm, 5.54g)
O: Diademed female head right.
R: Athena Alkidemos advancing left, brandishing spear and holding shield; METAM-BPIANΩN to either side.
SNG Cop 661; Sear 1676; BMC 3, 12
ex Nova Coins
2 commentsEnodiaFeb 15, 2017
Vlasto_1668v.JPG
Taras, Calabria29 views280-228 BC
AR Obol (10mm, 0.57g).
O: Kantharos; pellet above and to right, flying Nike with wreath to left.
R: Kantharos; pellet above and to left, E to right.  
Vlasto 1668v (Nike to right); HN Italy 1076
Scarce
ex London Ancient Coins

Another unpublished variety, this one a mirror image of Vlasto 1668, with Nike flying left instead of right.
3 commentsEnodiaFeb 13, 2017
a_Tarsos_2.JPG
Tarsos, Cilicia27 viewsAutonomous issue
164-27 BC
AE21 (21mm, 7.39g)
O: Turreted, veiled, draped bust of Tyche right, within dotted border.
R: Pyre of Sandon in the form of a pyramidal structure, containing figure of Sandon standing on a horned and winged lion, surmounting garlanded square basis; eagle perched on apex, M and H monograms to left, TAPΣEΩN to right.
Sear 5672
From the David Cannon Collection. ex Beast Coins
2 commentsEnodiaFeb 09, 2017
a_Tarsos.JPG
Tarsos, Cilicia23 viewsAutonomous issue
164-27 BC
AE21 (21mm, 7.39g)
O: Turreted, veiled, draped bust of Tyche right, within dotted border.
R: Pyre of Sandon in the form of a pyramidal structure, containing figure of Sandon standing on a horned and winged lion, surmounting garlanded square basis; eagle perched on apex, M and H monograms to left, TAPΣEΩN to right.
Sear 5672
From the David Cannon Collection. ex Beast Coins
1 commentsEnodiaFeb 09, 2017
Vlasto_1139v.JPG
Taras, Calabria33 views520-473 BC.
AR Obol (9.5mm., 0.48g).
O: Head of nymph Satyra right.
R: Three crescents facing outward around central pellet.
Vlasto 1139v (head left); HN Italy 924v (head left)
Very Rare
ex Savoca Coins

A rare and unpublished variety with the nymph facing right. Vlasto knew of only the left-facing type, and his specimen may have been unique.
I’ve gone with Vlasto’s dating on this one, although based on style I believe this should probably be revised to a slightly later date.
3 commentsEnodiaJan 27, 2017
Vlasto_1260.JPG
Taras, Calabria30 views380-334BC
AR Diobol (13mm, 0.88)
O: Head of Athena left, wearing crested Attic helmet decorated with hippocamp.
R: Herakles kneeling right with club in right hand, wrestling the Nemean lion; quiver below.
Vlasto 1260; HN Italy 911; Sear 351v
ex Robert Ball Nchf, Berlin (1917-1934);
ex Aegean Numismatics

2 commentsEnodiaJan 06, 2017
Abdera.JPG
Abdera, Thrace18 views352-323 BC
AE Dichalkon (14.5mm, 4.19g)
O: Griffin lying right on club; [star] above, MENAN (magistrate) below.
R: Laureate head of Apollo right within linear square; AB∆-HPI-TE-[ΩN] around.
SNG Cop 374; AMNG II 221; BMC Thrace 75; 83v (MEN)
ex Forvm Ancient Coins

“Beware of the sharp-beaked hounds of Zeus that do not bark, the Grypes (Griffins) who dwell about the flood of Plouton's stream that flows with gold. Do not approach them.”
~ Aeschylus (Prometheus Bound)
1 commentsEnodiaDec 30, 2016
Vlasto_1680.JPG
Taras, Calabria73 views280-228
AR Diobol (11mm, 1.04g)
O: Two horse heads, joined at truncation; four ):( symbols around.
R: Two horse heads back-to-back; four ):( symbols around.
Vlasto 1688 (trihemiobol); McGill II, 210v (trihemiobol); HN Italy 1072 (diobol); Sear 353v (diobol)
Rare
From the E.E. Clain Stefanelli collection. ex Naville Numismatics

Vlasto defines this series as ‘trihemiobols’, claiming the ):( symbol to be a mark of value. Whether this is true, and if so why this symbol relates to a trihemiobol, which suggests an approximate weight of .75g, I cannot say. However based on an obol of .50g I would have to agree with Rutter et al and declare this type to be a diobol.
5 commentsEnodiaDec 12, 2016
Kaulonia_Didrachm.JPG
Kaulonia, Bruttium36 views475-425 BC
AR Didrachm (20mm, 7.82g)
O: Apollo, nude, walking right, holding branch in raised right arm; small daimon running on outstretched left arm; stag standing right in field to right, head reverted, KAVΛ (retrograde) to left.
R: Stag standing right, laurel branch to right; KAV (retrograde) above.
Noe, Caulonia, Group F. cf 97; HN Italy 2046; Sear 462 
ex NB Numismatics

2 commentsEnodiaDec 07, 2016
Marcus_Aurelius_Cass.JPG
Marcus Aurelius / Poseidon37 viewsCassandreia, Macedonia
161-180 AD
AE21 (21mm, 6.78g)
O: Laureate head right; M AVR ANTON AVG.
R: Poseidon nude, standing slightly right; trident in right hand, dolphin in extended left hand; COL IVL AVG CASS.
RPC Online IV 10319; Leake HN 3722 corr. (same coin); Varbanov III 2791 (R6) var. (Poseidon left)
Extremely Rare
ex Forvm Ancient Coins

One of only two known examples with Poseidon standing right.

“The noble acceptance of the prison of oneself is the ultimate, and only, duty of man.”
2 commentsEnodiaDec 06, 2016
Syracuse_Pegasus.JPG
Syracuse, Timoleon and the Third Democracy25 views344-317 BC
AE Litra (19mm, 5.34g)
O: Laureate head of Apollo left, cornucopia behind.
R: Pegasos flying left; pellet above.
HGC2,1486; CNS 85ff; Sear 1199v (under Agathokles)
ex Lanz; ex Ken Dorney
EnodiaNov 01, 2016
V_1300.JPG
Taras, Calabria43 views380-344 BC.
Diobol AR (11mm, 0.77g.)
O: Head of Athena left, wearing crested Attic helmet decorated with Skylla.
R: Herakles kneeling right, wrestling the Nemean lion; owl standing left above lion, club to left.
cf Vlasto 1300; HN Italy 976
ex Savoca Coins
2 commentsEnodiaOct 26, 2016
Vlasto_1698.jpg
Taras, Calabria30 views380-228 BC.
AR Tritemorion (9mm, 0.45g)
O: Head of horse left.
R: Head of horse right.
Vlasto 1698, McGill II, 215v (letter); HN Italy 981v; Cote ---
Scarce
ex Savoca Coins
EnodiaOct 26, 2016
Marcus_Aurelius_Denarius.JPG
Marcus Aurelius / Salus13 views168-169 AD
AR Denarius (17.5mm, 3.07g)
O: Laureate head right; M ANTONINVS AVG TR P XXIII.
R: Salus standing left, feeding snake rising from altar from patera in right hand, long scepter vertical in left hand; SALVTI AVG COS III.
Minted 168-169
RIC III 207; RSC II 543; BMCRE IV 495; Hunter II 47; cf.SRCV II 4927 (TR P XXIIII)
ex Forvm Ancient Coins

“The happiness of your life depends upon the quality of your thoughts.”
EnodiaOct 22, 2016
V_1241_Plate.JPG
Greek, Ravel; Descriptive Catalogue of the Collection of Tarentine Coins formed by M. P. Vlasto - #124162 views380-325 BC
AR Diobol (11.5mm, 1.12g, 1h)
O: Helmeted head of Athena left, helmet decorated with Skylla.
R: Herakles standing right, strangling the Nemean lion; bow, quiver, and club to left; K between legs, [|- to lower right].
Vlasto 1241 (this coin); HN Italy 914
From the David Wray Collection. ex Michel P. Vlasto Collection; ex CNG

Vlasto plate coin, #1241
EnodiaOct 15, 2016
Vlasto_1323.JPG
Taras, Calabria58 views325-280 BC
AR Diobol (11.5mm, 1.17g)
O: Head of Athena right, wearing crested Attic helmet decorated with Skylla hurling stone.
R: Herakles kneeling right, strangling the Nemean lion; owl standing left above lion.
Vlasto 1323-24; Cote 463; SNG Cop 976; SNG ANS 1413; SNG Lloyd 245; HN Italy 976
From the E.E. Clain-Stefanelli Collection. ex Naville Numismatics


5 commentsEnodiaOct 07, 2016
V_1241.JPG
Taras, Calabria23 views380-325 BC
AR Diobol (11.5mm, 1.12g, 1h)
O: Head of Athena left, wearing crested Attic helmet decorated with Skylla.
R: Herakles standing right, strangling the Nemean lion; bow, quiver, and club to left; K between legs, [|- to lower right].
Vlasto 1241 (this coin); HN Italy 914
From the David Wray Collection. ex Michel P. Vlasto Collection; ex CNG

Vlasto plate coin, #1241


EnodiaOct 06, 2016
Athens_hemiobol.JPG
Athens, Attica28 views454-404 BC
AR Hemiobol (7mm, 0.30g)
O: Helmeted head of Athena right.
R: Owl standing right with head facing, olive sprig behind; AΘE to right, all within incuse square.
Kroll 14; SNG Cop 59; Sear 2531v
ex Artifact Man

1 commentsEnodiaOct 02, 2016
Vlasto_308.JPG
Taras, Calabria55 views400-390 BC (Period II)
AR Nomos (22mm, 7.74g, 2h).
O: Phalanthos riding dolphin left, holding akrostolion in extended right hand; Λ below, all within linear border.
R: Naked ephebe holding small shield in left hand, dismounting from horse cantering left; ΤΑΡΑΣ below, all within linear border.
Vlasto 309; Fischer-Bossert Group 26, 339 (V154/R263); Evans II, type C; Cote 108; McGill II, 13; HN Italy 849
ex CNG
2 commentsEnodiaAug 18, 2016
Vlasto_1821.JPG
Taras, Calabria97 views281-209 BC
Æ13 (13.5mm, 1.64g),
O: Kantharos; star on each side.
R: Kantharos; TA to left, filleted bucranium to right.
Vlasto 1821-23; Hands Type IV; McClean 796; Cote 427; HN Italy 1086; SNG Cop 1601; Sear 609
Scarce
From the E.E. Clain-Stefanelli Collection. ex Naville Numismatics

“Receive the god into your kingdom, 
pour libations, cover your head with ivy, join the dance!” 
~ Euripides (The Bacchae)
1 commentsEnodiaJul 28, 2016
Vlasto_1413.JPG
Taras, Calabria44 views272-235 BC
AR Diobol (11mm, 0.97g)
O: Head of Athena left, wearing Corinthian helmet (T behind?).
R: Herakles standing right, fighting Nemean lion with club in right hand; T to left.
Vlasto 1413
Very Scarce
ex Spartan Numismatics

Herakles Battle With the Nemean Lion
“… so the terrible lion arched himself and sprang from far upon me, raging to taste my flesh. I held in one hand my darts and the cloak from my shoulders, folded; with the other I swung my seasoned club about my ears and smashed it down on his head, but split the wild olive, rugged as it was, asunder on the invincible brute's maned skull. Before he could come at me, he fell, dropping down on the ground and stood on trembling feet swaying his head, for darkness swam about his eyes swaying his head, for darkness swam about his eyes at the stunning shock to the brain's core.”
~ Theocritus, Idylls 25. 132 ff
2 commentsEnodiaJul 07, 2016
Ephesus_AE2.JPG
Ephesus, Ionia15 views280-258 BC
AE19 (19mm, 4.51g)
O: Bee with spread wings, E - Φ to either side, all within wreath.
R: Stag grazing right, quiver above; ΕΥΠΟΛΙΣ in ex.
cf SNG Cop 268; cf SNG München 60; Sear 4406
ex Kölner Münzkabinett 


EnodiaJun 18, 2016
Pyrrhic_AE_Phthia.JPG
Syracuse, Sicily (Reign of Pyrrhus)17 views278-276 BC
Æ24 (24mm 11.98g)
O: Veiled head of Phthia left, wearing oak wreath; ΦΘΙΑΣ to left, Athena Parthenos facing behind, all within dotted border.
R: Thunderbolt; ΒΑΣΙΛΕΩΣ above, ΠΥΡΡΟΥ below, all within dotted border.
SNG ANS 835v (obverse symbol); Calciati II pg. 328, 184 Ds; Sear 1215v (obverse symbol)
Rare
ex Praefectus Coins


1 commentsEnodiaJun 13, 2016
Pyrrhic_AE.JPG
Syracuse, Reign of Pyrrhus8 views278-276 BC
Æ24 (24mm 11.98g)
O: Veiled head of Phthia left, wearing oak wreath; ΦΘΙΑΣ to left, Athena Parthenos facing behind, all within dotted border.
R: Thunderbolt; ΒΑΣΙΛΕΩΣ above, ΠΥΡΡΟΥ below, all within dotted border.
SNG ANS 835v (obverse symbol); Calciati II pg. 328, 184 Ds; Sear 1215v (obverse symbol)
Rare
ex Praefectus Coins

Phthia of Epirus was a Thessalian queen, daughter of Menon of Pharsalus and mother of Pyrrhus.
A rare coin not listed in HGC 2, SNG Cop, SNG Morcom, etc.
EnodiaJun 12, 2016
V_1235_Plate.JPG
Greek, Ravel; Descriptive Catalogue of the Collection of Tarentine Coins formed by M. P. Vlasto - #123593 viewsTaras, Calabria (Plate Coin)
380-325 BC
AR Diobol (11.5mm, 1.15g, 2h)
O: Head of Athena right, helmet decorated with hippocamp.
R: Naked Herakles seated left on dead lion right, holding cup in right hand and club in left.
Vlasto 1235 (this coin); HN Italy 910
Very rare
From the AG Collection.; ex Michel Pandely Vlasto Collection; ex Vecchi 17; ex CNG

This coin is extremely rare, and Vlasto cites only this single die combination. While I am sure it isn’t unique I could find no other specimen of this type listed anywhere.
2 commentsEnodiaJun 01, 2016
V_1235.JPG
Taras, Calabria62 views380-325 BC
AR Diobol (11.5mm, 1.15g, 2h)
O: Head of Athena right, wearing crested Attic helmet decorated with hippocamp.
R: Naked Herakles seated half-left on dead lion right, holding cup in right hand and club in left.
Vlasto 1235 (this coin); HN Italy 910
Extremely Rare
From the AG Collection. ex Michel Pandely Vlasto Collection; ex Vecchi 17; ex CNG

Vlasto plate coin, #1235.
Yet another reverse featuring Herakles‘ first labor. Here we see the final scene with our Hero, having slain the Nemean lion, now resting on the dead carcass and raising his cup. One can easily imagine him wondering how he is going to skin this impenetrable beast.
This coin is extremely rare, and Vlasto cites only this single die combination. While I am pretty sure it isn’t unique I could find no other specimen of this type listed anywhere.
2 commentsEnodiaMay 29, 2016
Vlasto_1615.JPG
Taras, Calabria27 views302-228 BC
AR Obol (11mm, 0.35g)
O: Kantharos, 5 pellets around, within dotted border.
R: Bucranium.
Vlasto 1615-17; SNG France 2201; HN Italy 918
Scarce
From the E.E. Clain-Stefanelli Collection. ex Naville Numismatics

1 commentsEnodiaMay 28, 2016
Larissa_Thessaly.JPG
Larissa, Thessaly70 viewsCirca 356-342 BC
AR Drachm (21mm, 5.83g)
O: Head of nymph Larissa facing slightly left, hair in ampyx, wearing single-pendant earring and plain necklace.
R: Horse standing right, preparing to lie down; ΛΑΡΙΣ−ΑΙΩΝ above and below.
Lorber L-III; BCD Thessaly II, 319; SNG Cop 120-121
ex Praefectus Coins

In my opinion one of the most beautiful coin types of all time, this design from Thessaly was an homage to the Syracusan master engraver Kimon and his artistic tetradrachm featuring a similar nymph, Arethusa. The nymph is depicted in her natural element of water, with her hair ‘floating’ about her face.
Facing head coins represent some of the greatest achievements in Greek numismatic art, and this type upholds that claim most admirably.
4 commentsEnodiaApr 10, 2016
Kroton_ANS_323.JPG
Kroton, Bruttium39 views525-425 BC
AR Triobol (11mm, 1.25g)
O: Tripod with lion‘s feet, within dotted border; QPO (retrograde) to left.
R: Pegasos with curled wings flying left; Q below.
SNG ANS 323-6; HN Italy 2127; Sear 468; Hands Class V, 3v (ethnic to right)
From the Frank James collection; ex CNG; ex Roma Auctions
3 commentsEnodiaMar 17, 2016
Corinth_Melikertes.JPG
Corinth, Corinthia15 views14-37 AD (Reign of Tiberius)
AE Semis (14mm, 3.03g)
O: Pegasus flying right.
R: Melikertes naked, swimming with dolphin left, left hand holding dorsal fin.
Amandry XVI63
ex Agora Auctions

Melikertes was the mortal son of Ino who, while fleeing from her insane husband, flung herself and her son into the ocean from a high cliff near Megara. The two were immediately transformed into sea dieties, and Melikertes was brought ashore to Corinth by a dolphin. Melikertes became Palaimon the patron of sailors, and identified with the Roman god of harbors Portunus.
Melikertes is sometimes depicted with a fish tail and has been associated with the Phoenician god Malquart. It is very easy to see an iconographic similarity between Melikertes and Arion of Corinth or Phalanthos of Taras.
EnodiaMar 16, 2016
Samos~0.JPG
Samos, Ionia12 views400-365 BC
AR Obol (8mm, 0.54g)
O: Lion scalp facing.
R: Forepart of bull right.
SNG Klein 492; Sear 4650
ex Andre Cichos
EnodiaFeb 28, 2016
Neapolis_470.JPG
Neapolis, Campania42 views270-240 BC
AE19 (19mm, 5.38g)
O: Laureate head of Apollo left; NEOΠOΛITΩN before, Ξ behind.
R: Man headed bull right, crowned by Nike flying right; IΣ below.
Graziano 423; MSP I, 364; Sambon ---; SNG ANS 477; Hands Type IV; HN Italy 589; Sear 557
ex Ancient Imports

“I will remember and not forget far-shooting Apollo.
Gods tremble as he approaches the home of Zeus:
All rise from their seats as he draws near
when he stretches his gleaming bow…
… How to praise you, celebrated in so many hymns?
Phoibos, the range of songs for you spreads over
all the islands and lands that feed calves.
All high places please you, from the mountain
headlands, to the rivers that flow seaward,
and the rugged banks sloping to the sea and harbor.”
~ Homeric Hymn to Apollo (Diane Rayor translation)
1 commentsEnodiaFeb 14, 2016
Copy_of_Menaion_AE.JPG
Menainon, Sicily (under Roman Rule)9 viewsAfter 212 BC
AE Tetras (17mm, 2.96g)
O: Veiled bust of Demeter right wreathed in grain, within dotted border.
R: Crossed torches; MENA / INΩN to either side, Δ below.
Calciati III 185, 5; HGC 2, 760; SNG ANS 290; SNG München 620; Sear 1129; BMC 98, 7
ex Forvm Ancient Coins


EnodiaFeb 07, 2016
Menaion_AE.JPG
Menainon, Sicily (under Roman Rule)15 viewsAfter 212 BC
AE Tetras (17mm, 2.96g)
O: Veiled bust of Demeter right wreathed in grain, within dotted border.
R: Crossed torches; MENA / INΩN to either side, Δ below.
Calciati III 185, 5; HGC 2, 760; SNG ANS 290; SNG München 620; Sear 1129; BMC 98, 7
ex Forvm Ancient Coins

"Come, my daughter; for far-seeing Zeus the loud-thunderer calls you to join the families of the gods, and has promised to give you what rights you please among the deathless gods, and has agreed that for a third part of the circling year your daughter shall go down to darkness and gloom, but for the two parts shall be with you and the other deathless gods: so has he declared it shall be and has bowed his head in token. But come, my child, obey, and be not too angry unrelentingly with the dark-clouded Son of Cronos; but rather increase forthwith for men the fruit that gives them life."
~ Hymn to Demeter (Evelyn-White translation)
EnodiaFeb 06, 2016
Vlasto_958.JPG
Taras, Calabria72 views235-212 BC (Period IX - The Roman Alliance II)
AR Didrachm (20mm, 6.21g)
Xenokrathes magistrate.
O: Bearded strategos on horse parading left, wearing short tunic and chlamys, raising right hand, short sword in scabbard under left arm; monogram and pileus above, Ξ ENO - KP ATHC in two lines below.
R: Taras wearing leafy crown, astride dolphin left, naked but for chlamys raised in left hand and draping over right thigh, trident over right shoulder; waves and cuttlefish below, [Τ]ΑΡΑΣ to left, monogram to right.
Vlasto 958; Evans IX, G1; Cote 579; HN Italy 1058
ex Roma Numismatics

An interesting piece from the last days of Tarentine independence.
Evans divides the Horsemen of the post-Pyrrhic era into Period VIII (272-235 BC) and Period IX, which he terminates at 228 BC with the alleged closing of the mint, but which hoard evidence suggests should be extended to the Punic occupation of 212.
The coins of the former category are of a decidedly inferior style compared to those of the previous century, but Period IX reveals something of a renaissance, and many of these coins are of fine style. Surely this is befitting the final truly Tarentine issues.

The Vlasto catalog describes the obverse figure as “Single Dioskuros…”. likely due to the pileus in the field above (almost off-flan here). However this mounted nobleman must certainly be the model for the less impressive Punic issues of Period X.
The obverse die is peculiar for its use of the ‘lunar E’ in the magistrate’s name, which was not typical at Taras.
3 commentsEnodiaJan 24, 2016
Julian_Sirmium.JPG
Julian II “The Philosopher” (as Caesar)16 views355-360 AD
AE3 (16mm, 1.98g)
O: Bare head right; DN IVLIANVS NOB C.
R: Emperor standing left, holding globe and spear; SPES REIPVBLICE, [B]SIRM in ex.
Sirmium mint.
RIC VIII Sirmium 81; Sear 4064
From the J. Grande collection

2 commentsEnodiaJan 12, 2016
Julian_Cyzicus.JPG
Julian II “The Philosopher” (as Augustus)14 views361-363 AD
AE3 (17mm, 2.16g)
O: Pearl diademed. draped and cuirassed bust right; DN FL CL IVLI ANVS PF AVG.
R: Emperor standing left holding globe and spear; SPES REIPVBLICE, SMKΓ in ex.
Cyzicus mint.
Ric VIII Cyzicus 124
From the J. Grande collection

"Choose your friends, then treat them as friends; do not regard them like slaves or servants, but associate with them frankly and simply and generously; not saying one thing of them and thinking something else.”
~ Julian
1 commentsEnodiaJan 12, 2016
Metapontum_Diobol.JPG
Metapontum, Lucania35 views470-440 BC
AR Diobol (11mm, 0.82g).
O: Ear of barley with six grains.
R: Incuse barley grain; annulet to left.
Noe 304; HN Italy 1488 
ex Agora Auctions; ex Artifact Man

Metapontum was located on the Gulf of Taras between the rivers Bradanus and Casuentus.
This ideal location, lying on a richly fertile plain, would provide the Metapontines with the abundant grain harvests from which they became both wealthy and influential. By the fifth century Metapontum had grown so prosperous that she paid an annual tribute to Delphi in the form of a "golden harvest" (Strabo), thought to be a sheaf of grain fashioned from gold.
1 commentsEnodiaDec 21, 2015
Syracuse_Poseidon~0.JPG
Syracuse, Reign of Hieron II10 views275-215 BC
AE21 (9.19g)
O: Head of Poseidon left, wearing tainia.
R: Ornamented trident-head between two dolphins, dividing [IE]P-ΩNOΣ below.
HGC 2, 1550; Sear 1223; BMC 2 603
ex M&R Coins

"Incessant cataracts the Thunderer pours,
And half the skies descend in sluicy showers.
The god of ocean, marching stern before,
With his huge trident wounds the trembling shore..."
~ The Iliad, Book 12 (Alexander Pope)
EnodiaDec 20, 2015
Enna_Litra.JPG
Enna, Sicily44 views450-440 BC
AR Litra (13mm, 0.69g)
O: Demeter driving slow biga right, holding grain ears.
R: Demeter standing facing, holding torch over altar to left; [HE]NNAI[ON] to right. 
HGC 2, 391; Sear 777
Very rare
ex Aegean Numismatics

Enna, known in antiquity as ‘The Naval of Sicily’, was located in the geographic center of Sicily on a high plateau which served as a natural fortress. It is said that one could see all three Sicilian coasts from the city’s heights.
Perhaps more important than its strategic location however was Enna’s religious significance, for it was here that Persephone was abducted by Hades and here that the cult of Her mother Demeter thrived.

"In the interior [of Sicily] is Enna, where is the temple of Demeter, with only a few inhabitants; it is situated on a hill, and is wholly surrounded by broad plateaus that are tillable." 
~ Strabo, Geography 6.2.6
2 commentsEnodiaNov 28, 2015
Vlasto_1744.JPG
Taras, Calabria53 views450-380 BC 
AR Hemiobol  (7.5mm, 0.20g). 
O: Skyphos with single handle to left.
R: Olive wreath, Π within.
cf Vlasto 1744; Cote 448; SNG France 2224; HN Italy 867; Sear 360v
Very Scarce
ex Savoca Coins

A peculiar little coin with obscure symbolism.
Even the vessel type is uncertain. It is often called a ‘skyphos’, although those are typically two-handled. I have also seen it referred to as a ‘kyathos’, but that type usually has its single handle molded extremely long, making it more useful as a dipper.
This scarce coin is more commonly seen with the cup handle to the right. The reverse can also depict a ‘K’ within the wreath, or even a race torch. An empty wreath is also recorded.
3 commentsEnodiaNov 12, 2015
Taras_obol_zz.JPG
Taras, Calabria41 views302-228 BC
AR Obol (11mm, 0.42g)
O: Kantharos; Φ and two pellets around.
R: Kantharos; two pellets and crown around.
Vlasto ---; Cote---; McClean ---; McGill ---; HN Italy 1076; Sear 357v
Very scarce
ex Pop Numismatik

"To the must-drinking Satyrs and to Bacchus, planter of the vine, Heronax consecrated the first handfuls of his plantation, these three casks from three vineyards, filled with the first flow of the wine; from which we, having poured such libation as is meet to crimson Bacchus and the Satyrs, will drink deeper than they."
~ 'The Vintage Revel', Leonidas of Tarentum
1 commentsEnodiaNov 06, 2015
CampanoTarentine.JPG
Taras, Calabria51 views281-228 BC
AR Didrachm (20mm, 6.95g)
O: Diademed head of nymph Satyra left, wearing triple-pendant earring.
R: Nude youth on horseback right crowning horse and holding reins; star of eight rays above, dolphin below, TA beneath raised foreleg.
Vlasto 1036-37, Cote 548; McGill II, 131; SNG ANS 1301; HN Italy 1098; Sear 366v
ex Praefectus Coins

These so-called Campano-Tarentine (or sometimes Bruttio-Tarentine) types are a numismatic enigma.
The idea of an alliance was originally put forth in the 19th century due to the apparent similarity of the obverse portraits of this series with the coins of Neapolis and other Campanian cities. However the nymph depicted here is more likely to be the local Satyra rather than Campanian Parthenope, and there is no direct historical evidence of any alliance between Taras and the Campanians during this period.
The heavier standard may mean that this series was intended to circulate outside of Taras as a federal issue, or possibly as a trade unit. Further, no coins of this type have been found within the city itself.
It has also been suggested that these coins were struck as tribute to Rome, and the apparent timeframe is in line with such a theory.
2 commentsEnodiaOct 19, 2015
Arpi.JPG
Arpi, Apulia29 views325-275 BC
AE20 (20mm, 7.07g)
O: Laureate head of Zeus left; [thunderbolt] behind.
R: Kalydonian boar running right; spearhead above, [Α]ΡΠΑΝ[ΟΥ] below.
SNG ANS 639; SNG Cop 605; HN Italy 642; Sear 569; BMC 1, 4
ex Andre C

Situated about 20 miles inland from the Adriatic Sea, Arpi was an ancient city which legend tells us was founded by the hero Diomedes. Arpi allied with Rome at the end of the 4th century BC, and supplied them with infantry and cavalry in the war against Pyrrhus.
After the annihilation of the Roman army at Cannae in 216 Arpi defected to the Carthaginian cause, and Hannibal made the city his winter headquarters in 215. However upon his departure to move his army south the Roman consul Quintus Fabius Maximus retook the city in 213, and Arpi never again regained its’ former importance.
EnodiaOct 07, 2015
Herakles_left.JPG
Taras, Calabria31 views380-334 BC
AR Diobol (12mm, 1.03g)
O: Head of Athena right, wearing crested Attic helmet decorated with Skylla.
R: Herakles kneeling left, strangling the Nemean lion; club behind.
cf Vlasto 1325; Cote ---; McGill ---; SNG ANS 1412v
Very Scarce
ex Spartan Numismatics

A very uncommon left-facing Herakles.
EnodiaSep 29, 2015
Vlasto_545.JPG
Taras, Calabria51 views344-334 BC (Period IV)
AR Didrachm (20mm, 7.54g)
Signed by the Kal... engraver. 
O: Nude horseman right, wearing shield on left arm and holding two spears in left hand, preparing to thrust third spear held in right hand; |- behind, Δ before, ΚΑΛ and Δ below.
R: Phalanthos astride dolphin right, holding crested helmet; stars flanking, ΤΑΡΑΣ to left, ΚΑΛ below.
Vlasto 545; Cote 215; McGill II, 41; Evans IV, H3; HN Italy 896; SNG ANS 971; Sear 345
ex Monarch Beach

Archidamos III reigned as King of Sparta from 360 BC until his death in 338. Summoned by the Tarentines to assist them in the first Lucanian war, he lead a mercenary army to Manduria in Calabria, where he fell in battle against the combined forces of the Messapians and Lucanians.
The historian Diodorus suggests that the death of Archidamos and the massacre of his army was divine vengeance for his plundering of the Temple of Apollo at Delphi.

The 4th century artist known to us only as the KAL engraver was arguably the finest die engraver in Magna Graecia. Specializing in common everyday scenes and eschewing the more aristocratic themes, his work had a certain elegance and sensitivity rarely seen in numismatic art.
The dolphin rider on this coin is bowing his head slightly and looking very pensively at the helmet in his hands. Is Phalanthos mourning for King Archidamos here? Sir Arthur Evans thought so, and the two stars on this reverse (one off flan), representing the Dioskouri and therefore Sparta the Mother City, lends credence to this idea. If so, then no other engraver could have captured this moment and this emotion quite like KAL…
1 commentsEnodiaSep 25, 2015
Smyrna_AE.JPG
Smyrna, Ionia27 views75-50 BC
AE21 (21mm, 7.33g)
O: Laureate head of Apollo right, within laurel wreath.
R: Homer seated left, holding scroll and staff; ΣΜYΡΝΑΙΩΝ to right.
SNG Cop 1207; Mionnet 921; Weber 6138; SNG Tuebingen 3180; BMC 116; Sear 4571v (wreath)
ex Jack H. Beymer

"Whoever obeys the gods, to him they particularly listen."
~ Homer (The Iliad)
EnodiaSep 08, 2015
Julian_II_Antioch.JPG
Julian II "The Philosopher" (as Augustus)30 views361-363 AD
AE3 (18mm, 2.32g)
O: Helmeted and cuirassed bust left, holding spear and shield; D N FL CL IVLI ANVS P F AVG.
R: VOT X MVLT XX in four lines within wreath; palm branch ANTB [palm branch] below.
Antioch mint
RIC VIII Antioch 219; Sear 4074v
ex Andre Cichos

Julian anticipated a successful trip to Antioch, but his experience there was a disappointment to him. The people chided him for his appearance, causing him to write ‘The Misopogon’ (or ‘Beard Hater’), a satire on himself but also a scathing indictment of the people of Antioch, whom he considered soft and degenerate, and wrote mockingly… “I say that you are liars and dancers, well skilled to dance in a chorus".
The relationship declined even more after the locals burned the temple of Apollo at Daphne, and further still after Julian’s efforts to make economic reforms designed to end government corruption and ease famine in the city caused by years of drought.
Julian finally left Antioch to march east and fulfill his plan to conquer Persia, but met his death in the attempt. Some say that the spearhead removed from his liver was actually Roman, but we will probably never know for certain.
1 commentsEnodiaAug 27, 2015
Maroneia_Horse.JPG
Maroneia, Thrace41 views400-350 BC
AE14 (13mm, 3.77g)
O: Horse prancing right; NK monogram below.
R: ΜΑΡ−ΩΝΙ−ΤΩΝ around linear square, vine with four bunches of grapes within; YE below.
SNG Cop 632; Sear 1636; BMC Thrace 129,66
ex Forvm Auctions

"The wine urges me on, the bewitching wine, which sets even a wise man to singing and to laughing gently and rouses him up to dance and brings forth words which were better unspoken."
~ Homer (The Odyssey)
EnodiaAug 21, 2015
Vlasto_107v.JPG
Taras, Calabria51 views470-450 BC
AR Didrachm (17mm., 7.82g)
O: Taras riding dolphin right, holding cuttlefish in right hand, left hand extended.
R: Hippocamp right; TAPA beneath, scallop shell below.
Vlasto 107(?); cf McGill II, 3; HN Italy 827; SNG ANS 837; SNG Cop 772-773
Scarce
ex ACR Auctions; ex Praefectus Coins

The hippocamp reverse type was undoubtedly one of the first non-incuse didrachms minted at Taras, occuring at the very beginning of the fifth century. However these small module coins were minted slightly later than the spread-flans, probably 470-450 BC.

"He [Poseidon] towers on high above the peaceful waves, urging his team of Hippokampoi with his three-pronged spear: frontwise they run at furious speed amid showers of foam, behind they swim and blot out their footprints with their tails."
~ Statius, Achilleid 1. 25 ff
1 commentsEnodiaAug 19, 2015
Nola_Didrachm.JPG
Nola, Campania42 views395-385 BC
AR Didrachm (21mm, 6.56g)
O: Diademed head of nymph right.
R: Man-faced bull walking left; Nike flying left above, placing wreath on bull's head, ΝΟΛAI[…] in ex.
Rutter 17; cf Sambon 806; HN Italy 605
ex Marc Walter Ancient Coins

Nola was located about 15 miles northeast of Neapolis, in a fertile region between the coast and the Appenine Mountains. The city still survives to this day, but very little is left of the ancient polis.
Nola is known as the city in which Augustus died in 14 AD.
Their coins are nearly identical to those of Neapolis and nearby Hyria, and in fact may actually have been struck in the former city.
1 commentsEnodiaAug 19, 2015
Vlasto_1464.JPG
Taras, Calabria30 views325-280 BC
AR Diobol (11mm, 0.77g)
O: Head of Athena facing slightly left, wearing triple-crested helmet decorated with Skylla; club to left, [TAPAΣ] above.
R: Herakles standing right, strangling the Nemean lion; club to left, AP monogram between Herakles legs.
Vlasto 1464; Cote 558; SNG ANS 1476; cf HN Italy 1062
Scarce
ex Marcantica Ancient Coins

There are many stories in Greek mythology regarding the goddess Athena; Her involvement in the War of the Giants, the contest with Poseidon to determine the patron of Athens, Her weaving contest with Arachne, the Judgment of Paris, and the blinding of Teiresias for viewing Her while bathing are among the most commonly known.
But it is Her assistance to Herakles during his Twelve Labors which concerns us here, the first of which, the slaying of the Nemean lion, is depicted on the reverse of this coin.
EnodiaJul 24, 2015
Julian_FTR.JPG
Julian II “The Philosopher” (as Caesar)28 views355-360 AD
AE3 (18mm, 2.68g)
O: Bare-headed, draped, and cuirassed bust right; D N IVLIANVS NOB C.
R: Soldier spearing fallen horseman; FEL TEMP REPARATIO, M in left field, ∆SISL in ex.
Siscia mint, 4th Officina
RIC VIII Siscia 382; Sear 4063v
ex Forvm Ancient Coins

Nothing says "Happy Days" quite like spearing a man while he's down.
EnodiaJul 22, 2015
V_1302~0.JPG
Greek, Ravel; Descriptive Catalogue of the Collection of Tarentine Coins formed by M. P. Vlasto - #130275 viewsTaras, Calabria (Plate Coin)
325-280 BC
AR Diobol (12mm, 1.14g, 8h)
O: Head of Athena right, wearing crested Attic helmet decorated with a hippocamp.
R: Herakles crouching right, strangling the Nemean lion to right; EY above.
Vlasto 1302 (this coin); HN Italy 976
From the M.P Vlasto collection. ex MNS
EnodiaJul 19, 2015
V_1302.JPG
Taras, Calabria46 views325-280 BC
AR Diobol (12mm, 1.14g)
O: Head of Athena right, wearing crested Attic helmet decorated with a hippocamp.
R: Herakles kneeling right, strangling the Nemean lion; EY above.
Vlasto 1302 (this coin); HN Italy 976
From the M.P Vlasto collection. ex MNS

Vlasto plate coin, #1302.
2 commentsEnodiaJul 16, 2015
Pella~0.JPG
Pella, Macedon29 views187-131 BC
AE 18 (18mm, 6.24g)
O: Veiled head of Demeter facing.
R: Cow grazing right, monograms above and below; ΠEΛΛΗΣ in ex.
SNG ANS 572; SNG Cop 257; BMC Macedonia 92, 29
ex Gitbud & Naumann
EnodiaJul 01, 2015
Pella.JPG
Pella, Macedon10 views187-131 BC
AE 18 (18mm, 6.24g)
O: Veiled head of Demeter facing.
R: Cow grazing right, monograms above and below; ΠEΛΛΗΣ in ex.
SNG ANS 572; SNG Cop 257; BMC Macedonia 92, 29
ex Gitbud & Naumann
EnodiaJun 27, 2015
Vlasto_1474.JPG
Taras, Calabria51 views280-228 BC
AR Litra (9.5mm, 0.72g)
O: Scallop shell.
R: Dolphin swimming left; E below.
SNG ANS 1529v; Vlasto ----; HN Italy 979
Scarce
ex Ancient Imports

Scarce left-facing dolphin.
1 commentsEnodiaJun 22, 2015
Vlasto_1184.JPG
Taras, Calabria38 views470-450 BC
AR Hemilitra (7.5mm, 0.34g)
O: Scallop shell within linear border.
R: Head of nymph Satyra right.
Vlasto 1178; HN Italy 841
ex Naville Numismatics

EnodiaJun 16, 2015
Vl_1799.JPG
Taras, Calabria54 views281-209 BC
Æ21 (21mm, 8.04g)
O: Laureate head of Zeus right.
R: Nike standing right, holding thunderbolt; [TA]PANTIN[ΩN] to right.
Vlasto 1799; Cote 220; Laffaille 35; Sear 607
Rare
ex Praefectus Coins

Apart from Athena on its prolific series of diobols Taras was not particularly known for portrait coins. Here we find Zeus, or more appropriately Zeus Kataibates, ‘The Descender‘ or ‘He Who Comes Down’. This epithet refers to His ability to send thunder and lightning down from the sky, apparent here in the thunderbolt Nike holds in Her hands.
While not generally represented on their coins, the cult of Zeus must have been strong at Taras. A 66 foot bronze colossus of the Father of the Gods, attributed to the sculptor Lysippus, stood in the city, and most residents of Taras had a small column-shrine to Zeus Kataibates in front of their homes as a protection against lightning strikes.
1 commentsEnodiaApr 27, 2015
Vlasto_1489~0.JPG
Greek, Ravel; Descriptive Catalogue of the Collection of Tarentine Coins formed by M. P. Vlasto - #148972 viewsTaras, Calabria (Plate Coin)
325-280 BC
AR Litra (11mm, 0.64g, 12h)
O: Scallop shell with nine teeth.
R: Dolphin leaping right; small dolphin left above, |-HP(?) below.
Vlasto 1489 (this coin); McGill II, 182; HN Italy 979
From the M.P Vlasto Collection. ex MNS

“The part of the small denominations, which owing to their small size, have always been ignored by the collectors, show such a sequence of small works of art, and so complete, that every museum would be pleased to have it in its cabinet. For many numismatists some of these tiny pieces, will be a real revelation.”
~ Oscar E. Ravel (Descriptive Catalogue of the Collection of Tarentine Coins formed by M. P. Vlasto - 1947)
EnodiaMar 29, 2015
Vlasto_1489.JPG
Taras, Calabria56 views325-280 BC
AR Litra (11mm, 0.64g, 12h)
O: Scallop shell with nine teeth.
R: Dolphin leaping right; small dolphin left above, |-HP(?) below.
Vlasto 1489 (this coin); McGill II, 182; HN Italy 979
From the M.P Vlasto Collection. ex MNS

Vlasto plate coin, #1489.
“... The part of the small denominations, which owing to their small size, have always been ignored by the collectors, show such a sequence of small works of art, and so complete, that every museum would be pleased to have it in its cabinet. For many numismatists some of these tiny pieces, will be a real revelation.”
~ Oscar E. Ravel (Descriptive Catalogue of the Collection of Tarentine Coins formed by M. P. Vlasto - 1947)

1 commentsEnodiaMar 29, 2015
Vlasto_1099~0.JPG
Greek, Ravel; Descriptive Catalogue of the Collection of Tarentine Coins formed by M. P. Vlasto - #109997 viewsTaras, Calabria (Plate Coin)
302 - 281 BC (Period VI)
AR Drachm (16mm, 3.09g, 3h)
Nikokrates, magistrate.
O: Head of Athena right, wearing Attic helmet decorated with Skylla throwing stone.
R: Owl with closed wings standing right on Ionic capital, head facing; [NIKO]KPAT[HΣ] to left, TA to right.
Vlasto 1099 (this coin); HN Italy 1052
From the M.P. Vlasto Collection. ex CNG

“Michel P. Vlasto was born in Athens on the 1st February 1874 and Studied in Marseilles.
… He was a born artist and very good at drawing. His artistic feeling made him a real worshipper of Greek art; everything beautiful charmed him; if he could have done so a museum would have been his home. The real pleasure he felt in admiring a beautiful work of Greek art was so intense that he used to say he could not imagine life without Art and that beauty and Happiness went together. As a result he could not feel happy unless he was surrounded by Beauty. The room where he used to spend most of his leisure was a kind of temple in which a few perfect specimens of Greek art were the idols he worshipped in a real religious way.
… But all these splendid surroundings were only the frame of the world famous collection of Tarentine coins which represented his chief interest in life and really his sole hobby. But he did not limit himself to collecting coins as most collectors do; he was a real self-made scholar; his knowledge of Tarentine numismatic was complete; there was not a single coin in a public or private cabinet which he did not know, and nothing was said or written about Tarentum, its history and its art which escaped him. He published several contributions to numismatics and many of his books are famous.”
~ Oscar E. Ravel (Descriptive Catalogue of the Collection of Tarentine Coins formed by M. P. Vlasto - 1947)
1 commentsEnodiaMar 04, 2015
Vlasto_1099.JPG
Taras, Calabria90 views302 - 281 BC (Period VI)
AR Drachm (16mm, 3.09g, 3h)
Nikokrates magistrate.
O: Head of Athena right, wearing Attic helmet decorated with Skylla throwing stone.
R: Owl with closed wings standing right on Ionic capital, head facing; [NIKO]KPAT[HΣ] to left, TA to right.
Vlasto 1099 (this coin); HN Italy 1052
From the M.P. Vlasto Collection. ex CNG

Vlasto plate coin, #1099.
“Michel P. Vlasto was born in Athens on the 1st February 1874 and studied in Marseilles.
… He was a born artist and very good at drawing. His artistic feeling made him a real worshipper of Greek art; everything beautiful charmed him; if he could have done so a museum would have been his home. The real pleasure he felt in admiring a beautiful work of Greek art was so intense that he used to say he could not imagine life without Art and that Beauty and Happiness went together. As a result he could not feel happy unless he was surrounded by Beauty. The room where he used to spend most of his leisure was a kind of temple in which a few perfect specimens of Greek art were the idols he worshipped in a real religious way.
… But all these splendid surroundings were only the frame of the world famous collection of Tarentine coins which represented his chief interest in life and really his sole hobby. But he did not limit himself to collecting coins as most collectors do; he was a real self-made scholar; his knowledge of Tarentine numismatic was complete; there was not a single coin in a public or private cabinet which he did not know, and nothing was said or written about Tarentum, its history and its art which escaped him. He published several contributions to numismatics and many of his books are famous.”
~ Oscar E. Ravel (Descriptive Catalogue of the Collection of Tarentine Coins formed by M. P. Vlasto - 1947)
4 commentsEnodiaMar 03, 2015
Julian_Siscia.JPG
Julian II 'The Philosopher' (as Augustus)21 views361-363 AD
AE3 (19mm, 2.65g)
O: Diademed, helmeted and cuirassed bust left, holding shield and spear; DN FL CL IVLIANVS PF AVG.
R: VOT X MVLT XX in four lines within wreath; BSISC· below.
Siscia mint
RIC VIII 421; Sear 4074v
ex Munzen Sann

“Are you not aware that all offerings whether great or small that are brought to the gods with piety have equal value, whereas without piety, I will not say hecatombs, but, by the gods, even the Olympian sacrifice of a thousand oxen is merely empty expenditure and nothing else?”
~ Julian
1 commentsEnodiaFeb 18, 2015
Persephone_Kyzikos~0.JPG
Kyzikos, Mysia19 viewsCirca 3rd century BC
AE 11 (11mm, 1.16g)
O: Head of Persephone Soteira right, hair in sakkos.
R: Tripod between KY-ZI; tunny below.
SNG Cop 56; SNG France 429-430; Sear 3862
ex David Conners

Although traditionally attributed as Kore Soteira, in my opinion this should more correctly be Persephone Soteira. The epithet Soteira (or ‘Savior’) refers to the Goddess’ role as the bringer of Spring and the return of life-giving crops. As this return must necessarily occur after Her abduction She is no longer Maiden (Kore) but rather Persephone, Queen of the Underworld and consort of Hades.
EnodiaFeb 05, 2015
V_630.JPG
Taras, Calabria68 views315-302 BC (Period V)
AR Didrachm (22mm, 7.63g, 4h)
O: Warrior, preparing to throw spear and holding shield and two more spears, on horse rearing right; ΣA below.
R: Phalanthos, holding arrow and bow, astride dolphin right; |-HP and HP monogram below, TAPAΣ to left.
Vlasto 630; Fischer-Bossert Group 68, 818; Evans V, B18; SNG ANS 1011; HN Italy 938
From Group SGF. ex CNG

Sir Arthur Evans places this coin at the end of Period V, during the time of Kleonymus, and the martial themes on both sides of this coin, unusual on Tarentine coinage, may support this theory.
Kleonymus, the unworthy heir to the Spartan throne, was yet another in a line of self-serving mercenary generals to come to the aid of Taras (circa 302 BC), but he was no more successful than his predecessors.

This is the first right-facing dolphin in my collection. While not rare, these occur less often than the typical left-facing types.
3 commentsEnodiaFeb 03, 2015
V_1296~0.JPG
Greek, Ravel; Descriptive Catalogue of the Collection of Tarentine Coins formed by M. P. Vlasto - #129699 viewsTaras, Calabria (Plate Coin)
380-325 BC
AR Diobol (12mm, 1.22g, 11h)
O: Head of Athena right, wearing crested Attic helmet decorated with hippocamp; Ξ behind neck-flap.
R: Herakles kneeling right, strangling the Nemean lion; [club] to left, TA above.
Vlasto 1296 (this coin); HN Italy 912
From the M.P Vlasto Collection. ex Pegasi Numismatics; ex MNS

"Mr. Vlasto's collection of Tarentine coins is certainly the most complete that exists; practically all known varieties are represented; its catalog can therefore be considered a real corpus of the coinage of Tarentum. Numerous are the rare or unique specimens; but what makes this collection an outstanding one is its large number of exceptionally well preserved coins. Mr. Vlasto was never content with his specimens; if he could get a better one, he never missed the opportunity. He used to tell me that in some cases he had changed six specimens of the same coin and that he would even change the sixth if he could find a better one. The results is that many of his coins are really wonderful gems of priceless value. Any colledctor would be proud to have just one of them in his collection."
~ Oscar Ravel (Descriptive Catalogue of the Collection of Tarentine Coins formed by M. P. Vlasto)
1 commentsEnodiaJan 08, 2015
V_1296.JPG
Taras, Calabria87 views380-325 BC
AR Diobol (12mm, 1.22g, 11h)
O: Head of Athena right, wearing crested Attic helmet decorated with hippocamp; Ξ behind neck-flap.
R: Herakles kneeling right, strangling the Nemean lion; [club] to left, TA above.
Vlasto 1296 (this coin); HN Italy 912
From the M.P Vlasto Collection. ex Pegasi Numismatics; ex MNS

Vlasto plate coin, #1296.
"Mr. Vlasto's collection of Tarentine coins is certainly the most complete that exists; practically all known varieties are represented; its catalog can therefore be considered a real corpus of the coinage of Tarentum. Numerous are the rare or unique specimens; but what makes this collection an outstanding one is its large number of exceptionally well preserved coins. Mr. Vlasto was never content with his specimens; if he could get a better one, he never missed the opportunity. He used to tell me that in some cases he had changed six specimens of the same coin and that he would even change the sixth if he could find a better one. The result is that many of his coins are really wonderful gems of priceless value. Any collector would be proud to have just one of them in his collection."
~ Oscar E. Ravel (Descriptive Catalogue of the Collection of Tarentine Coins formed by M. P. Vlasto - 1947)
4 commentsEnodiaJan 06, 2015
Taras_1661.JPG
Greek, Ravel; Descriptive Catalogue of the Collection of Tarentine Coins formed by M. P. Vlasto - #166184 viewsTaras, Calabria (Plate Coin)
302-228 BC
AR Obol (10mm, 0.53g)
O: Kantharos; three pellets around.
R: Kantharos with bunch of grapes to right; pellets around.
Vlasto 1661 (this coin); Cote ---
Scarce
From the M.P Vlasto collection; ex Den of Antiquity
1 commentsEnodiaJan 01, 2015
Vlasto_1220.JPG
Taras, Calabria81 views380-325 BC
AR 3/8 Obol (7mm, 0.15g, 7h)
O: Head of nymph Satyra right, within dotted border.
R: Kantharos; three pellets around.
Vlasto 1220
Scarce
ex Roma Numismatics
1 commentsEnodiaDec 12, 2014
SyraTimoleon.JPG
Syracuse, Timoleon and the Third Democracy53 views344-336 BC
AE Hemidrachm (23mm, 12.40g)
O: Laureate head of Zeus Eleutherios right, hair short; ZEYΣEA EΛE-YΘEPIOΣ
to right.
R: Thunderbolt; eagle with closed wings standing to right; ΣYPAKOΣIΩN around.
HGC 2, 1440; Calciati II p. 167, 72; SNG ANS 477ff; SNG Cop 727; Sear 1192
ex Forvm Ancient Coins

Timoleon was cool.
1 commentsEnodiaDec 12, 2014
Taras_Facing_Athena.JPG
Taras, Calabria83 views302-228 BC
AR Diobol (12mm, 1.05g, 10h)
O: Head of Athena facing slightly right, wearing triple crested helmet decorated with Skylla.
R: Herakles standing right, strangling the Nemean lion; club above amphora to left, ΕΥP between legs.
Vlasto 1438; Cote 597; SNG Cop 1004; HN Italy 1062
Very Scarce
From the Frank James collection. ex Spinks; ex Walter Holt; ex Roma Numismatics

Facing heads do not occur often on Tarentine coinage, and the Athena with triple-crested helmet motif has always captivated me, so i am very happy to add this scarce type to my collection.
2 commentsEnodiaNov 23, 2014
Vlasto_352a.JPG
Taras, Calabria68 views385-380 BC (Period III - The Age of Archytas)
AR Didrachm (20mm, 7.37g, 11h)
O: Naked youth crowning horse standing right; kerykeion before, Λ below, all within linear border.
R: Taras seated sideways on dolphin left, resting his left hand on its tail; H (signature) on body of dolphin, P below, TAPAΣ to left, all within linear border.
Vlasto 352; Evans III, A2; Cote 121v; Fischer-Bossert 442d; Sear 341v
Rare
From the Frank James Collection. ex Forvm Ancient Coins; ex Roma Numismatics

A noted general, inventor, mathematician and philosopher, Archytas was a Pythagorean and friend of Plato, and likely responsible for saving the latter from death at the hands of Dionysius II of Syracuse.

While not one of the more exciting designs from the Taras mint, this coin, signed by ’H', or 'HP’, is still nicely rendered and actually quite rare. Fischer-Bossert sites only 7 known examples. I do not know if this specimen is one of those.
2 commentsEnodiaNov 23, 2014
Persephone_tetradrachm.JPG
Syracuse, Reign of Agathokles92 views317-289 BC
AR Tetradrachm (24mm, 17.14g)
O: Wreathed head of Kore (Persephone) right, wearing pendant earring and necklace; KOPAΣ behind.
R: Nike standing right, hammer in right hand, erecting trophy; triskeles to lower left, [ΑΓΑΘΟΚΛΕΙΟΣ] behind, all within dotted border.
Struck between 313–295 BC.
HGC 2, 1536; SNG ANS 670-76; SNG Cop 766ff; Sear 972v; BMC 388v
ex Museum Surplus

“Kore, the Girl, is so intimately associated with her mother Demeter that they are often referred to simply as the Two Goddesses or even as Demeteres. Kore’s own enigmatic name is Persephone, or Phersephone, and in Attic Pherrephatta. In Homer she is mentioned alone and also in conjunction with her husband, Hades-Aidoneus, the personification of the underworld; her Homeric epithets are venerable, agaue, and awesome, epaine. Her two aspects, girl-like daughter of the Corn Goddess and Mistress of the Dead, are linked in the myth which, though ignored in heroic epic, is responsible almost exclusively for defining the picture of Demeter. The earliest extended version is the Homeric Hymn to Demeter, but Hesiod already alludes to it in the Theogony as an ancient and well known story, and aspects of the later tradition seem to preserve very ancient material.”
~ Walter Burkert (Greek Religion, 1985)
2 commentsEnodiaOct 15, 2014
Aitna_Persephone.JPG
Aitna, Sicily51 views210-150 BC (Roman rule)
AE Hexas (16.5mm, 3.89g)
O: Head of Persephone right, wreathed in grain.
R: Filleted cornucopia; two pellets in upper right, AITNAI−ΩN upward to left.
HGC 2, 70; Calciati III, 152, 11; SNG ANS 1165; SNG München 26; Sear 1019v (pellets to left); BMC 5, 8
ex Forvm Ancient Coins

Demeter and Persephone
"…As Queen of Death, that worship which is Fear,
Henceforth, as having risen from out the dead,
Shalt ever send thy life along with mine…"
~Alfred Lord Tennyson
1 commentsEnodiaOct 05, 2014
Vlasto_984-6.JPG
Taras, Calabria103 views212-209 BC (Period X - The Punic Occupation)
AR Half-Shekel (Reduced Nomos) (22mm, 3.94g)
Sokannos magistrate.
O: Warrior on horseback right, holding filleted palm frond in right hand, rein in left; ΣΩKAN-NA below.
R: Phalanthos on dolphin left, holding kantharos in extended right hand, trident in left; eagle with open wings standing left behind, TAPAΣ below.
Vlasto 984-86; Cote 605-06; SNG ANS 1272; HN Italy 1082; SNG Ashmolean 420-1; Sear 383v (drachm)
ex CNG

Popular history suggests that the Romans shut down the Tarentine mint circa 228 BC. No further coins were produced (at least in silver) until Hannibal captured the city in 212, at which time these “reduced nomoi” were struck for the approximately three years of occupation using the Punic standard.
While the earlier horseman/dolphin rider types were renewed at this time, the artistic quality was greatly diminished.
Also, the magistrate names differed greatly from the earlier coins and were likely not even Hellenic. One theory is that the names were those of the local indigenous peoples (Messapians, etc), although I believe they were more likely Carthaginian and probably those of Hannibal’s own administrators.
What a shame that the last emissions from this once great city should be so debased.
5 commentsEnodiaOct 03, 2014
Arethusa_Dolphin.JPG
Syracuse, Reign of Dionysius I53 views405-367 BC
AE Hemilitron (18mm, 3.05g)
O: Head of Arethusa (Artemis?) left, wearing ampyx and sphendone; laurel branch behind
R: Dolphin jumping right over scallop shell; ΣYPA between.
HGC 2, 1480; SNG ANS 417; Sear 1187
ex Forvm Auctions
1 commentsEnodiaMar 23, 2014
Veiled_Tyche_a.JPG
Thessalonika, Macedon19 viewsPseudo-autonomous
2nd - 3rd century AD
AE18 (19mm, 3.49g)
O: Veiled and turreted head of goddess (Tyche?) right; ΘECCAΛONIKH around
R: ΘΕC−CΑΛΟ−ΝΙΚΕ−ΩΝ in four lines within laurel wreath.
Moushmov 6616-17; SNG ANS 816; SNG Cop 388-90
ex Ancient Coin Art

EnodiaFeb 24, 2014
Veiled_Tyche.JPG
Thessalonika, Macedon20 viewsPseudo-autonomous
2nd - 3rd century AD
AE18 (19mm, 3.49g)
O: Veiled and turreted head of goddess (Tyche?) right; ΘECCAΛONIKH around
R: ΘΕC−CΑΛΟ−ΝΙΚΕ−ΩΝ in four lines within laurel wreath.
Moushmov 6616-17; SNG ANS 816; SNG Cop 388-90
ex Ancient Coin Art
EnodiaFeb 24, 2014
Vlasto_1707a.JPG
Taras, Calabria131 views325-280 BC
AR Tritemorion (3/4 Obol) (8mm, 0.43g)
O: Bridled horse’s head right; eight-rayed star to right.
R: Bridled horse’s head right.
Vlasto 1707; Cote 261v; McGill II, 212v (no star); HN Italy 981; SNG ANS 1560v (no star); Sear 358v (no star)
ex Forvm Ancient Coins

4 commentsEnodiaFeb 23, 2014
Vlasto_1758_.JPG
Taras, Calabria83 views302-228 BC
AR 3/8 Obol (6mm, 0.16g)
O: Two cresents back to back; two pellets above and below.
R: Two cresents back to back; two pellets above and below.
Vlasto 1758; McGill II, 216; HN Italy 1077; Sear 361v
Scarce
ex Roma Numismatics
2 commentsEnodiaFeb 23, 2014
Copy_of_Perinthos_Demeter.JPG
Perinthos, Thrace19 viewsPseudo-autonomous
Circa 3rd century AD
AE26 (6.56g)
O: Veiled bust of Demeter right, gazing at poppy in hand.
R: Artemis Tauropolis (Hekate?) advancing right, holding two torches; ΠEPINTIΩN, ΔIΣNEΩKOPON around.
Moushmov 4386v
ex Civitas Galleries
EnodiaFeb 17, 2014
Copy_of_Metapontum_AE_2.JPG
Metapontum, Lucania15 views300-250 BC
AE16 (16mm, 3.09g)
O: Veiled head of Demeter right, wearing stephane.
R: Ear of barley; long leaf to left with VE monogram above, MET[A] to right.
Johnston 57; SNG ANS 573; SNG Cop 1259; HN Italy 1693.
ex Praefectus Coins
EnodiaFeb 17, 2014
108.JPG
Syracuse, Reign of Agathokles69 views317-289 BC
AE16 (17mm, 3.71g)
O: Head of Kore (Persephone) left; ΣΥΡΑΚΟΣΙΩΝ before, amphora behind.
R: Bull butting left; monogram above.
HGC 2, 1469; Calciati II, p. 238, 108; Sear 1195v
ex Aegean Numismatics

2 commentsEnodiaJan 23, 2014
V_255.JPG
Taras, Calabria89 views443-400 BC
AR Didrachm (20mm, 6.91g)
O: Phalanthos seated left on dolphin, extending right hand and holding cuttle fish in left; scallop shell below, all within plain linear border.
R: Naked Taras seated left on diphros, right hand extended, lekythos dangling from left.
Vlasto 255; SNG ANS 860; HN Italy 844; Sear 330v
ex Pegasi Numismatics; ex ECIN

These didrachms, known as the ‘Oekist types‘, immediately pre-date the more famous equestrian types usually associated with Taras.
Early attributions, including that of Sir Arthur Evans, describe the seated figure on the reverse as the Demos of the city, but as no such personification of ‘The People’ was typically used at this time Vlasto (among others) have rejected this theory in favor of a representation of the oekist, or founder of the city, in this case Taras.
However even this theory is ripe for discussion, as the city’s founder was not Taras but rather Phalanthos.
More recently Dionysus has been suggested, and certain varieties show iconography which would seem to support this (although not this particular specimen).
But I will give the last word here to George Brauer who, in his marvelous book ‘Taras: It’s History and Coinage‘ (1986), writes “The consensus today is that the Tarentines would actually have understood him to be Taras, possibly as eponymous founder, more likely as eponymous hero.”
2 commentsEnodiaDec 24, 2013
Vlasto_1405.JPG
Taras, Calabria60 views302-228 BC
AR Diobol (12mm, 0.85g)
O: Head of Athena right, wearing plain crested Attic helmet.
R: Herakles standing right, strangling the Nemean lion; club behind, owl with spread wings between legs.
Vlasto 1405
ex Gibud & Naumann

2 commentsEnodiaOct 10, 2013
Carthage_AE.JPG
Carthage, Zeugitana38 viewscirca 3rd century BC
AE19 (19mm, 5.84g)
O: Head of Tanit left, wreathed in corn, wearing plain necklace and earring.
R: Head and neck of horse right.
Sear 6523v (pendant necklace)

EnodiaOct 08, 2013
Vlasto_1527.JPG
Taras, Calabria95 views325-281 BC
AR Litra (10.1mm, 0.57g)
O: Scallop shell with nine teeth.
R: Dolphin right; bunch of grapes and I below.
Vlasto 1527; cf Cote 417; SNG ANS 1512v (letter)
ex Forvm Ancient Coins

"Tarentum is a colony of the Lakedaimonians... They say that Taras the hero was a son of Poseidon by a Nymphe of the country, and that after this hero were named both the city and the river. For the river, just like the city, is called Taras."
~ Pausanias 10.10.8
3 commentsEnodiaSep 26, 2013
Eleusis_AE.JPG
Athens, Attica123 viewsEleusinian Festival Coinage
340-335 BC
AE 16 (16mm, 3.65g)
O: Triptolemos seated left in winged chariot drawn by two serpents, holding grain ear in right hand.
R: Pig standing right on mystic staff; EΛEYΣI above, bucranium in ex.
SNG Cop 416; Sear 2586v

The Sons of Dysaules
The story of Triptolemus being charged with bringing agriculture to man has been well told. That of his brother Eubouleus perhaps less so.
Eubouleus was a swineherd whose pigs were lost when the Earth gaped open to swallow up Persephone.
Pigs were sacrificed during the Eleusinian Rites in a women’s mystery ritual known as the Thesmophoria. The piglets would be washed in the sea during the Procession and then brought back to the Sanctuary and ritually slaughtered.
It is interesting to note that in ancient Greek religion pigs were thought to be able to absorb miasma from humans, making this an even more appropriate offering.

"It is said, then, that when Demeter came to Argos she was received by Pelasgos into his home, and that Khrysanthis, knowing about the rape of Kore, related the story to her. Afterwards Trokhilos, the priest of the mysteries, fled, they say, from Argos because of the enmity of Agenor, came to Attika and married a woman of Eleusis, by whom he had two children Eubouleos and Triptolemos. That is the account given by the Argives."
~ Pausanias, Description of Greece 1. 14. 3
8 commentsEnodiaSep 22, 2013
Vlasto_1602.JPG
Taras, Calabria112 views281-235 BC
AR Litra (Obol?) (9mm, 0.52g)
O: Scallop shell with nine teeth.
R: Taras astride dolphin left, holding cornucopia in right hand and palm branch in left; AP monogram in field to right.
Very Scarce
Vlasto 1602; Cote 387v

While Pausanias tells us that the eponymous hero of Taras was the son of Poseidon, a new theory has been posited by Anton Boras, based on evidence from excavations north of Athens, which claims that Taras was in fact the son of Leonidas of Sparta and the goddess Gaia.
I am certainly interested in hearing anything further from these digs.
4 commentsEnodiaSep 16, 2013
Syra_Hippocamp_2.jpg
Syracuse, Reign of Dionysius I 43 views405-367 BC
AE Hemilitron (17.2mm, 5.95g)
O: Head of Athena left, wearing Corinthian helmet; ΣΥΡΑ before.
R: Hippocamp with curled wing left, bridle trailing.
HGC 2, 1456; SNG ANS 426-33
From the H. Wallace collection; ex ECIN

1 commentsEnodiaSep 04, 2013
Kyzikos_1.JPG
Kyzikos, Mysia18 views480-450 BC
AR Hemiobol (9mm, 0.34g)
O: Forepart of running boar left; tunny fish upwards behind.
R: Head of roaring lion left, star above, all within incuse square.
SNG Cop 49; Sear 3850v; BMC 15,35
ex Tom Cederlind
EnodiaSep 02, 2013
Arethusa_AE.JPG
Syracuse, Reign of Dionysius I 36 views405-367 BC
AE Hemilitron (18mm, 4.12g)
O: Head of Arethusa left, hair in sphendone and wearing earring and necklace; dolphin behind.
R: Wheel of four spokes; ΣΥ-ΡΑ in upper quadrants, two dolphins in lower quadrants.
HGC 2, 1479; Calciati 20; SNG ANS 404-10; Sear 1186
ex Jack H. Beymer

“The Island of Ortygia... has the fountain of Arethusa, which sends forth a river that empties immediately into the sea. People tell the mythical story that the river Arethusa is the Alpheus, which latter, they say, rises in the Peloponnesus, flows underground through the sea as far as Arethusa, and then empties thence once more into the sea.”
~ Strabo
1 commentsEnodiaAug 26, 2013
Maroneia_AE.JPG
Maroneia, Thrace39 viewsafter 148 BC
AE27 (27mm, 14.25g)
O: Head of Dionysus right, wearing ivy wreath.
R: Dionysus standing left, holding bunch of grapes; ∆ΙΟΝΙΣΟΥ ΣΩΤΗΡΟΣ ΜΑΡΩΝΙΤΩΝ, monogram to lower left.
SNG Copenhagen 643v (monogram); Sear 1638
ex Jack H. Beymer

Maroneia was named for Maron, a son of Dionysus.
This region was famous in ancient times for the quality of its wine, which was Maroneia’s leading export.
1 commentsEnodiaAug 26, 2013
Taras_T_fraction.JPG
Taras, Calabria108 views473-430 BC
AR ¼ Litra (7mm, 0.19g)
O: T with three pellets around.
R: T with three pellets around.
Vlasto 1191; Cote 182; McGill II, 147; HN Italy 853
Very scarce
ex Sam Sloat Coins

This tiny coin is part of a group of five or so very unusual fractions minted at Taras.
While not very sexy, it is quite scarce and a vital part of any Tarentine collection, and I'm extremely happy to have found it.
6 commentsEnodiaAug 12, 2013
Hiketas_AE.JPG
Syracuse, Reign of Hiketas36 views288-279 BC
AE24 (24mm, 9.42g)
O: Laureate and beardless head of Zeus Hellanios left.
R: Eagle with wings open standing left on thunderbolt.
HGC 2, 1448; Sear 1211

2 commentsEnodiaAug 05, 2013
Meta_AE.JPG
Metapontum, Lucania39 views350-300 BC
AE15 (15mm, 2.80g)
O: Head of Demeter right, wreathed in grain.
R: Ear of grain.
Johnston 62; HN Italy 1698; Sear 621v

1 commentsEnodiaAug 05, 2013
Vlasto_1047.JPG
Taras, Calabria53 views302-281 BC
AR Drachm (15mm, 3.11g)
O: Head of Athena right, wearing Attic helmet decorated with Skylla hurling stone.
R: Owl with closed wings standing right on olive branch; [TAP] behind.
Vlasto 1047-53; cf McGill II, 135; HN Italy 975; Sear 367v

"I lie far from Italy and far from Taras my home.
This is more bitter to me than death."
~ Leonidas of Taras
2 commentsEnodiaAug 04, 2013
Metapontum.JPG
Metapontum, Lucania112 views330-300 BC
AR Didrachm (21mm, 7.76g)
O: Head of Demeter right, wreathed in grain and wearing triple earring and necklace; ΔAI under chin.
R: Ear of barley with seven grains, leaf to right; plow above leaf, MAX below, META to left.
Johnston C-1; SNG ANS 470; SNG Cop 1227; HN Italy 1581; Sear 416
ex Windsor Antiquities

Founded around 700 BC by Achaean colonists, Metapontum strived to remain neutral through the many wars common in Magna Graecia. They took no active role in the struggle between fellow Achaean colonies of Kroton and Sybaris, although they did give sanctuary to Pythagoras and his followers after they were banished from Kroton. Here he taught until his retirement, and here he died (c. 500 BC).
Metapontum joined Taras in an alliance with Alexander of Epirus during his wars against the Lucanians and Bruttians (332 BC). However when Metapontum declined a similar offer to ally with Kleonymus of Sparta in 303 BC, Taras became hostile and attacked, eventually extorting a large sum of gold from the Metapontines. The animosity between them subsided by 281 BC, when Metapontum once again sided with the Tarentines in an alliance with Pyrrhus, King of Epirus, in the war against Rome.
By this time their influence in the region had waned, and we hear less and less of the city until the Second Punic War (216 BC), at which time Metapontum declared in favor of Hannibal. By 212 BC Hannibal occupied the city, and it seems to have been a major base for his forces. However, after his military reversal Hannibal was forced to give up possession of the region, departing Italy from Metapontum in 207 BC and evacuating the population at the same time. Metapontum would never again play a major role in Magna Graecia, and although Cicero mentions visiting the city, Pausanias tells us that the site was a complete ruin by his time.
3 commentsEnodiaJul 13, 2013
Alaisa.JPG
Alaisa, Sicily35 viewscirca 340 BC
AE22 (22mm, 9.06g)
O: Griffin springing left.
R: Horse prancing left; [KAINON] in ex.(?)
HGC 2, 509 (as Kainon); SNG ANS 1169; Hunter 165,1; Sear 1048; BMC 2 29,6
ex Jack H. Beymer

My first ancient coin.
EnodiaJul 11, 2013
Metapontum_AE_2.JPG
Metapontum, Lucania55 views300-250 BC
AE16 (16mm, 3.09g)
O: Veiled head of Demeter right, wearing stephane.
R: Ear of barley; long leaf with VE monogram above to left, MET[A] to right.
Johnston 57; SNG ANS 573; SNG Cop 1259; HN Italy 1693
ex Praefectus Coins

“They found the illustrious goddess sitting near the road, just the way
they had left her. Then they led her to the palace of their father.
She was walking behind them, sad in her heart.
She was wearing a veil on her head, and a long dark robe
trailed around the delicate feet of the goddess.”
~ Homeric Hymn to Demeter
1 commentsEnodiaJul 03, 2013
Thourioi_Sixth.JPG
Thurii, Lucania 26 views425-400 BC
AR Diobol (11mm, 1.02g)
O: Head of Athena right, wearing crested Attic helmet.
R: Bull butting right; ΘOYPIΩN above; [tunny fish right] in ex.
Sear 438; BMC 1 21

The coinage of Thurii depicts its’ origins, with Athena adorning the obverse, and the bull reverse, although more dynamic here, is reminiscent of the ealier coins of Sybaris.
EnodiaJun 17, 2013
Thourioi.JPG
Thurii, Lucania55 views300-280 BC
AR Didrachm (21mm, 7.67g)
O: Head of Athena right, wearing crested Attic helmet ornamented with Skylla hurling a stone.
R: Bull butting right; ΘOYPIΩN and ΘE above, tunny fish in ex.
SNG ANS 1081; HN Italy 1870; Sear 443v (no inscription on exergual line)
From the Frederick H. Rindge collection; ex Jack H. Beymer

Rising from the ruins of New Sybaris, Thurii was originally planned by Perikles of Athens as a Greek utopia. Scientists, artists, poets and philosophers from all over the Greek mainland were encouraged to immigrate to southern Italy around 443 BC to help establish this new city tucked against the mountains between two rivers on the west coast of the Tarentine Gulf. Among those accepting the challenge was Herodotus, who finished his ‘Histories’ here before his death in 420. The sophist Protagoras of Abdera also came, and was commissioned to write the new city’s democratic constitution.
However this idea of a peaceful colony of free-thinkers was destined to be short-lived. By 413 BC the colony was at war with mother-city Athens, and in 390 Thourii suffered a significant defeat by the Lucanians. In response the Thurians called in help from Rome to deal with this threat, and then again in 282 for its’ war with Taras. The city was plundered by Hannibal of Carthage during the second Punic war, who left it in ruin.
2 commentsEnodiaJun 17, 2013
Velia_Philistion.JPG
Velia, Lucania96 views305-290 BC (Period VII: Philistion Group)
AR Didrachm (22mm, 7.33g)
O: Head of Athena left, wearing crested Phrygian helmet decorated with griffin; palmette on neck-guard, Θ (Philistion) behind.
R: Lion standing right with head facing, devouring ram‘s head; grasshopper between Φ-I above, YEΛHTΩN in ex.
William 415; HN Italy 1305; SNG ANS 1361; SNG Ashmolean 1322-4
ex Praefectus Coins

Velia was never conquered by the Lucanians, and in 275 BC signed an alliance with Rome. However over the centuries the mouths of the two rivers between which the city was built silted up the harbor, resulting in a ruined trade. In time the city became surrounded by marshlands, malaria ensued, and its inhabitants moved away.
Velia had managed to withstand centuries of regional hostility, but withered before the forces of nature.
5 commentsEnodiaJun 15, 2013
Velia_Kleudoros.jpg
Velia, Lucania96 views350-310 BC (Period VI: Kleudoros Group)
AR Didrachm (21mm, 7.50g)
O: Head of Athena right, wearing crested Attic helmet ornamented with griffin, swan's head at front of visor.
R: Lion prowling left; Φ above, >E monogram (Kleudoros) below, YEΛHTΩN in ex, all within linear circle.
Williams 297; SNG ANS 1312; SNG Ashmolean 1233; HN Italy 1289; Sear 460v
ex Jack H. Beymer

In 545 BC the Persian King Cyrus the Great conquered the Ionian colony of Phocaea in Asia Minor. The survivors fled by sea, and after a settlement on Corsica was destroyed by the Carthaginians the Phocaean refugees finally reached the south-west coast of Lucania between 538 and 535 BC, where they founded Velia on a promontory between two rivers.
Its’ natural harbor and fortunate situation on the road between Rome and Rhegion made Velia a prime center of commerce, and it soon became known throughout the Mediterranean as a profitable destination and a safe shelter from the harsh winds of the Tyrrhenian Sea. This allowed the colony to thrive, and by the middle of the 5th century BC the Eleatic school of philosophy took form here under Xenophanes and Parmenides, the latter also writing the city's constitution.
4 commentsEnodiaJun 11, 2013
aJulian_II.JPG
Julian II 'The Philosopher' (as Augustus) 19 views361-363 AD
AE3 (20mm, 2.69g)
O: Diademed, helmeted and cuirassed bust left, holding spear and shield; D N FL CL IVLI ANVS P F AVG.
R: VOT X MVLT XX in four lines within wreath; HERACLA below.
Heraclea mint.
RIC VIII 105; Sear 4074v
ex Auctiones GmbH

“Men should be taught and won over by reason, not by blows, insults, and corporal punishments.”
~ Julian
EnodiaMay 29, 2013
Julian_2a.JPG
Julian II 'The Philosopher' (as Augustus) 14 views361-363 AD
AE3 (20mm, 2.81g)
O: Diademed, helmeted and cuirassed bust left, holding spear and shield; D N FL CL IVLI ANVS P F AVG.
R: VOT X MVLT XX in four lines within wreath; •-CONSPA-palm in ex.
Constantinople mint.
RIC VIII 167; Sear 4074v
ex Forvm Ancient Coins

"Let every man choose his own guardian and guide.“
~ Julian
EnodiaMay 15, 2013
cf_V1239v.JPG
Taras, Calabria84 views345-334 BC (Period IV)
AR Diobol (12mm, 0.88g)
O: Head of Athena left, wearing crested Attic helmet decorated with Skylla.
R: Herakles, holding club overhead, kneeling left on the back of the Nemean lion; [N]O above lion’s head, cornucopia to right.
Vlasto 1427; cf Cote 443-44; HN Italy 913
Scarce
ex Jencek Historical Enterprise

A scarce little coin featuring yet another scene from Herakles’ epic battle with the Nemean lion.
5 commentsEnodiaApr 13, 2013
V1236.JPG
Taras, Calabria43 views334-302 BC
AR Diobol (12mm, 1.06g)
O: Head of Athena left, wearing crested Attic helmet decorated with Skylla.
R: Herakles standing right, strangling the Nemean lion.
Vlasto 1236; Cote 248; SNG Cop 994; McGill II, 148; SNG ANS 1359; HN Italy 914
From the Colin E. Pitchfork collection. ex CNG

The image of Herakles wrestling the Nemean lion on this series was inspired by the coinage of Herakleia, a Tarentine colony in Lucania and the headquarters of the Italiote League during the first half of the 4th century BC.
After the conquest of Herakleia by the Massapians in 356 leadership of the League was transferred to Taras, who began minting these diobols as a federal issue. It became almost as ubiquitous as the dolphin rider type, circulating as small change throughout southern Italy.
1 commentsEnodiaApr 09, 2013
Vlasto_1415_2.JPG
Taras, Calabria116 views302-228 BC
AR Diobol (12-14mm, 1.08g)
O: Head of Athena left, wearing crested Corinthian helmet decorated with griffin.
R: Herakles standing left, strangling the Nemean lion; club above Ionic capital to right, TAP above.
Vlasto 1415; Cote 423; HN Italy 1064
Rare
From the Colin E. Pitchfork collection. ex CNG; ex Quadriga Ancients

Left-facing Athena’s are slightly less common on Tarentine coinage, and Corinthian helmets a bit moreso. But a left-facing Herakles is quite scarce and I am very happy to add this one to my collection.
5 commentsEnodiaApr 01, 2013
Hekate_Pherai.JPG
Pherai, Thessaly58 views302-286 BC
AR Hemidrachm (14-16mm, 2.44g)
O: Head of Hekate left, wearing laurel wreath, triple-pendant earring and plain necklace; torch over shoulder.
R: The nymph Hypereia standing left, placing right hand on lion-headed fountain from which water pours; [A]Σ/TO in two lines in wreath to left; ΦEPAIOYN to right.
SNG Cop 239; BCD Thessaly 714; Sear 2204; BMC 7, 20-21
From the BCD collection. ex Auctiones GmbH

... Hekate whom Zeus the son of Kronos honored above all. He gave her splendid gifts, to have a share of the earth and the unfruitful sea. She received honor also in starry heaven, and is honored exceedingly by the deathless gods... For as many as were born of Gaia and Ouranos amongst all these she has her due portion. The son of Kronos did her no wrong nor took anything away of all that was her portion among the former Titan gods: but she holds, as the division was at the first from the beginning, privilege both in earth, and in heaven, and in sea. Also, because she is an only child, the goddess receives not less honour, but much more still, for Zeus honors her.
~ Hesiod (Theogony, 404ff)
2 commentsEnodiaMar 27, 2013
Alex_III_tet.JPG
Macedonian Kingdom, Reign of Alexander III89 views336-323 BC
AR Tetradrachm (25mm, 17.01g)
O: Head of Alexander as Herakles right, clad in lion's skin headdress.
R: Zeus seated left on backless throne, holding eagle and sceptre, his legs parallel; eagle's head facing left in field to left, AΛEΞANΔPOY behind.
Amphipolis mint (lifetime issue).
Price 51; Sear 6713v; C. 4952
ex Jack H. Beymer

3 commentsEnodiaMar 09, 2013
Syracuse_Timoleon.JPG
Syracuse, Reign of Dionysius I51 views405-367 BC
AE Litra (19mm, 8.63g)
O: Head of Athena left, wearing Corinthian helmet.
R: Hippocamp left, with curled wing.
Calciati 83,35; SNG ANS 435-46; Sear 1193v
1 commentsEnodiaFeb 24, 2013
Apollonia_Pontica.jpg
Apollonia Pontica, Thrace17 views350-300 BC
AE12 (Dichalkon?) (12mm, 2.21g)
O: Laureate head of Apollo right.
R: Anchor; A to left, crawfish to right.
BMC Black Sea 178-81
EnodiaFeb 17, 2013
Taras_1166.JPG
Taras, Calabria82 views500-430 BC (Period I)
AR Litra (10mm, 0.68g)
O: Scallop shell with nine teeth.
R: Head of Taras left.
Vlasto 1166; Cote 53; McGill II, 145; HN Italy 840
Very Scarce
From the Lewis Egnew collection. ex Superior Galleries; ex Harlan J. Berk

A wonderful example of late archaic style, these early litrae are all fairly scarce and quite desirable.
The reverse of this type is often referred to as ‘Female head left’, or ‘Head of nymph Satyra left’. George Brauer Jr. confirms this in his book 'Taras; It's History and Coinage' (1986), but cites no source. Satyra was the mother of Taras. The style differs slightly from die to die, but in none of them do I really see a female head. Effeminate perhaps, but Apollo and Dionysus have both taught us that lesson.
So once again I find myself agreeing with Vlasto and I believe this to be the head of Taras, which was also common to some of the larger coins of the period.
Both left and right facing busts are known.

Με βαθύτατη ευγνωμοσύνη αγαπητέ μου αγαπητέ φίλε Σηαννον
3 commentsEnodiaFeb 16, 2013
Vlasto_1404.JPG
Taras, Calabria79 views302-228 BC
AR Diobol (13mm, 0.93g)
O: Head of Athena right wearing plain crested Attic helmet.
R: Herakles standing right, strangling the Nemean lion; club behind, ΦΙ between legs, [T]APANTIN to right.
Vlasto 1404; McGill II, 178; HN Italy 912
ex Aegean Numismatics

1 commentsEnodiaFeb 04, 2013
Marcus_Aurelius.JPG
Marcus Aurelius / Victory49 views163-164 AD
AE As (26mm, 10.1g)
O: Laureate head right; M ANTONINUS AUG P M
R: Victory walking left, holding wreath and palm; TR P XVIII IMP II COS III, S C
RIC III, 884
ex Newgate Numismatics

“Look back over the past, with its changing empires that rose and fell, and you can foresee the future too.”
2 commentsEnodiaJan 22, 2013
Metapontum_fraction.JPG
Metapontum, Lucania44 views430-400 BC
AR Obol (7.6mm, 0.38g)
O: Beardless head of Herakles right, wearing lion skin headdress.
R: Barley ear of five grains.
Noe 365.1; HN Italy 1506
Scarce
ex Forvm Ancient Coins

About 480 BC the city magistrates of Metapontum desired to make a change to their coinage, which up until that time depicted only the ear of grain.
This coin symbolizes the legend of Herakles and the Oxen of Geryon which, according to Diodorus Siculus (circa 1st century AD), were brought by the Hero to Metapontum from the west.

Ένα πολύ ιδιαίτερο ευχαριστώ για την καλή Νίκο μου φίλο.
EnodiaJan 18, 2013
Domitian_denarius.JPG
Domitian / Minerva 27 views89 AD
AR Denarius (18mm, 3.07g)
O: Laureate head right; IMP CAES DOMIT AVG GERM P M TR [P VIII].
R: Minerva standing right, wielding javelin and holding shield; IMP XIX COS XIIII CENS P P P.
RSC 252 / RIC 137 / van Meter 39-3
ex Tom Cederlind

"There was a raven, strange to tell,
Perched upon Jove's own gable, whence
He tried to tell us 'All is well' -
But he had to use the future tense."
~ Suetonius (The Twelve Caesars)

1 commentsEnodiaJan 17, 2013
Antoninus_Pius.JPG
Antoninus Pius / Securitas 24 views140-145 AD
AE As (24mm, 10.66g)
O: Laureate head right; ANTONINVS AVG PIVS P P TR P COS III.
R: Securitas standing left, holding long sceptre and leaning on column; SECVRITAS PVBLICA, S-C.
RIC III, 828 / BMC 1765-66
ex Francis J. Rath

1 commentsEnodiaJan 17, 2013
Nerva_2.JPG
Nerva / Concordia26 views97 AD
AE As (25mm, 11.25g)
O: Laureate head right; IMP NERVA CAES AVG P M TR P II COS III P P.
R: Clasped hands; CONCORDIA EXERCITVVS, S-C.
RIC 95 / Cohen 23 / Sear 965v
ex Empire Coins

1 commentsEnodiaJan 17, 2013
Hyria_Didrachm_a.JPG
GREEK, Italy, Campania, Hyria93 views400-335 BC
AR Didrachm (21mm, 7.33g)
O: Head of Athena right, wearing wreathed Attic helmet decorated with an owl.
R: Man-headed bull walking right; YPIN[A] above.
SNG ANS 255v / HN Italy 539 / Rutter 69 (O32/R??) / Sear 294v (bull left)
ex Den of Antiquity

An historically obscure city which was probably located in southern Campania about 25 miles east of Mt. Vesuvius.

EnodiaJan 08, 2013
Hyria_Didrachm.JPG
Hyria, Campania174 views400-335 BC
AR Didrachm (21mm, 7.33g)
O: Head of Athena right, wearing wreathed Attic helmet decorated with an owl.
R: Man-headed bull walking right; YPIN[A] above.
Rutter 69 (O32/R??); SNG ANS 255; HN Italy 539; Sear 294v (bull left)
ex Den of Antiquity

An historically obscure city in southern Campania, Hyria may have been located approximately 25 miles east of Mt. Vesuvius. It's site was likely an old Samnite settlement, and in fact the ethnic on the reverse of these didrachms is often inscribed in Oscan.
However Imhoof-Blumer believed that these coins, along with those of neighboring Nola, may actually have been struck at Neapolis. This is suggested by die comparisons, and the man-headed bull device seemingly adds weight to the arguement.
7 commentsEnodiaJan 07, 2013
Julian.JPG
Julian II 'The Philosopher' (as Augustus) 28 views361-363 AD
AE Maiorina (29mm, 7.36g)
O: Pearl diademed, draped and cuirassed bust right; DN F L CL IULIANVS P F AVG.
R: Bull standing right, two stars above; SECVRITAS REIPVB, TESΓ between two palm branches in exergue.
Thessalonica mint, 3rd Officina.
RIC VIII Thes 225; Sear 4072v

"So long as you are a slave to the opinions of the many you have not yet approached freedom or tasted its nectar… "
~ Julian
1 commentsEnodiaJan 01, 2013
Trajan_Prov.JPG
Trajan / Quadriga of Elephants31 viewsAlexandria, Egypt
116-117 AD (Year 20)
AE Drachm (30-32mm, 13.19g)
O: Laureate head of Trajan right; AVT TPAIAN API CEB GERM DAKIK PAR.
R: Emperor driving quadriga of elephants right, holding laurel branch and sceptre; LK above.
Koln 715; cf Milne 814; cf BMC 514
EnodiaJan 01, 2013
Max_tet_2.JPG
Maximianus / Elpis40 viewsAlexandria, Egypt
287-288 AD (Year 2, first reign)
AE Tetradrachm (17mm, 8.13g)
O: Laureate, draped and cuirassed bust right; MAΞIMIANOC CEB.
R: Elpis standing left, holding flower and raising her skirt; L-B on either side.
Milne 4814
ex M&R Coins
EnodiaDec 31, 2012
ValerianProv.JPG
Valerian / Hekate50 viewsEphesus, Ionia
253-260 AD
AE26 (7.86g)
O: Laureate and draped bust of Valerian right; AYT K ΠO ΛIK BAΛEPIANOΣ.
R: Hekate standing facing, head left, wearing long chiton and holding two torches; EΦEΣIΩN Γ NEΩKOPΩN.
Lindgren 474; SNG Cop 499
ex Gerhard Rohde

"The Sibyl first lined up four black-skinned bullocks, poured a libation of wine upon their foreheads, and then, plucking the topmost hairs from between their brows, she placed these on the altar fires as an initial offering, calling aloud upon Hecate, powerful in heaven and hell.
While other laid their knives to these victim’s throats, and caught the fresh warm blood in bowls, Aeneas sacrifices a black-fleeced lamb to Nox, the mother of the Furiae, and her great sister, Terra, and a barren heifer to Proserpine. Then Aeneas set up altars by night to the god of the Underworld, laying upon the flames whole carcasses of bulls and pouring out rich oil over the burning entrails. But listen! - at the very first crack of dawn, the ground underfoot began to mutter, the woody ridges to quake, and a baying of hounds was heard through the half-light: the goddess was coming, Hecate!"
~ Virgil (Aeneid 6,257)
3 commentsEnodiaDec 31, 2012
Perinthos_Demeter.JPG
Perinthos, Thrace 38 viewsPseudo-autonomous
Circa 3rd century AD
AE26 (6.56g)
O: Veiled bust of Demeter right, gazing at poppy in hand.
R: Artemis Tauropolis (Hekate?) advancing right, holding two torches; ΠEPINTIΩN, ΔIΣNEΩKOPON around.
Moushmov 4386v
ex Civitas Galleries

"At the heart of all great art is an essential meloncholy"
~ Federico Garcia Lorca

"But when the tenth enlightening dawn had come, Hekate, with torches in her hands, met her, and spoke to her and told her news: "Queenly Demeter, bringer of seasons and giver of good gifts, what god of heaven or what mortal man has rapt away Persephone and pierced with sorrow your dear heart? For I heard her voice, yet saw not with my eyes who it was. But I tell you truly and shortly all I know."
So, then, said Hekate."
~ Homeric Hymn to Demeter
EnodiaDec 31, 2012
Vlasto_594~0.JPG
GREEK, Italy, Calabria, Taras134 views330-302 BC (Period V)
AR Didrachm (20mm, 7.98g).
O: Naked warrior in crested helmet on horse prancing right, spearing downward with right hand, shield and two extra spears in left; ΔΑΙ below. R: Naked ephebe riding dolphin left, holding trident over shoulder with right hand and shield decorated with hippocamp in left; ΦΙ to left, ΤΑΡΑΣ to right, murex shell below.
Vlasto 594; Cote 239; Evans V, B5; Fischer-Bossert 1022a; HN Italy 935; SNG ANS 991.
ex Heidelberger Munzhandlung.
4 commentsEnodiaDec 18, 2012
Vlasto_594.JPG
Taras, Calabria190 views330-302 BC (Period V)
AR Didrachm (20mm, 7.98g)
O: Naked warrior in crested helmet on horse prancing right, spearing downward with right hand, shield and two extra spears in left; ΔΑΙ below.
R: Taras riding dolphin left, holding trident over shoulder with right hand and shield decorated with hippocamp in left; ΦΙ to left, ΤΑΡΑΣ to right, murex shell below.
Vlasto 594; Cote 239; Evans V, B5; Fischer-Bossert 1022a; McGill II, 52; HN Italy 935; SNG ANS 991
ex Heidelberger Munzhandlung

Vlasto dates this coin to the time of Alexander the Molossian, but I believe it may be safely placed after the King’s death in 331, as the typical Epirote symbols are no longer seen (especially, as Evans points out, the eagle’s head). Alexander, uncle to Alexander the Great, arrived at Taras in 334 as defender, the leader of a mercenary army from Epirus hired to help defend Taras from the indigenous Italian tribes. However he was quickly seen to have something more in the way of conquest in mind. Having ignored the warning of the Oracle at the Temple of Zeus Dodona, Alexander pushed west and fulfilled prophecy, being killed while fighting the Lucanians at Pandosia, near the River Acheron.

The murex shell played a very large part in the Tarentine economy, producing a rich purple dye. In fact the early reference books simply describe it as “a purple shell”. Purple cloth from Taras was considered a great luxury throughout the Mediterranean.
5 commentsEnodiaDec 05, 2012
Taras_x.JPG
Taras, Calabria136 views520-473 BC
AR 1/4 Litra (8mm, 0.22g)
O: Scallop shell with nine teeth.
R: Four spoked wheel.
cf Vlasto 1116; Cote ---
Scarce
From the Colin E. Pitchfork Collection. ex CNG; ex Roman Lode

The 'wheel type' reverse motif was common on all early Tarentine coinage until 473 BC, after which it is unknown.
1 commentsEnodiaNov 16, 2012
Taras_AE.JPG
Taras, Calabria102 views281-209 BC
AE15 (15.48mm, 3.03g)
O: Scallop shell with eleven teeth.
R: Taras riding dolphin left, holding kantharos in right hand and cornucopia in left; [TAPAN] to right.
Vlasto 1824-41; Cote 309-11; Hands Type VI; cf McGill III, 12; SNG Cop 1085; Sear 608; BMC 1, 479
From an old German collection. ex Ancient Imports

Taras only minted about 17 bronze types, and all at a relatively late date. Pinpointing those dates is problematic however, as even the experts don't agree.
It seems certain that Arthur Sambon was correct in stating the first bronze coins of Taras were minted no earlier than 334 BC, as these types are consistent with the style of the city’s gold issues of that time (in turn copied from the types of Alexander the Mollosian and, later, Alexander of Epirus). Barclay Head on the other hand places the beginning of the series around the time of the tyrant Kleonymus of Sparta, circa 302 BC.
Claudius Cote in his catalog 'Monnaies de Tarente' assigns this particular type (above) to the period of 334-302, while Alfred Hands gives us the dates 281-228, starting at the time of Pyrrhus of Epirus. This agrees with Michael Vlasto, although Vlasto extends the duration to the final fall of Taras to the Romans in 209 BC.
So where do all these contradictory opinions leave us? I am going with Vlasto here, and putting this coin in the 281-209 time period.

It does seem likely though that the Tarentines themselves placed little importance on the series, as most of the types were simply reproduced from earlier dies, with no original artistic input. The effect of these bronzes on the other colonies of Apulia-Calabria however was profound, as nearly every coin producing city within the region struck their own version of this coin.
EnodiaNov 11, 2012
Taras_AE_2.JPG
Taras, Calabria110 views281-209 BC
AE11 (10.72mm, 0.96g)
O: Scallop shell with nine teeth.
R: Two dolphins swimming right; TA below.
Vlasto 1842-46; Cote 441-42; Hands Type VII; SNG Cop 1088; HN Italy 1088
ex Ancient Imports

Taras became the dominant Greek city in Magna Graecia, and the marine symbols on this coin showcase the source of Tarentine wealth and power.
EnodiaNov 11, 2012
Taras_diobol~0.JPG
Taras, Calabria93 views380-345 BC
AR Diobol (11mm, 0.95g)
O: Horse right, running free.
R: Taras astride dolphin right, left hand extended.
Vlasto 1225; Cote 177; SNG Fitzwilliam 348
Very Scarce
ex Davissons Ltd

As the first port-of-call in southern Italy from Greece, Taras’ fine natural harbor soon established the city as a major center of Greek influence.
Founded in 706 BC by the Spartan Phalanthos, Taras derived its name from the son of Poseidon, who was carried ashore by a dolphin. Legend has it that Phalanthos too, after being shipwrecked, was rescued by a dolphin, and this explains the artistic device so common throughout this prolific coinage.
2 commentsEnodiaNov 10, 2012
Taras_hemilitra.JPG
Taras, Calabria58 views281-228 BC
AR Hemiobol (7mm, 0.24g)
O: Scallop shell with nine teeth.
R: Dolphin right; Π (tripod?) below.
Vlasto 1531v; SNG ANS 785v; HN Italy 979v; Sear 359v
Scarce
ex Jencek Historical Enterprise

"New moons swell the slippery shell-fish, but it is not
every sea that yields the choicest kind. The Lucrine
mussel is better than the Baian cockle. Oysters come
from Circeii, sea-urchins from Misenum, luxurious
Tarentum plumes herself on her broad scallops."
~ Horace
1 commentsEnodiaNov 10, 2012
Taras_horse_obol.JPG
Taras, Calabria105 views334-302 BC
AR Tritemorion (3/4 Obol) (8.4mm, 0.50g)
O: Bust of horse right; Θ to right.
R: Bust of horse left.
Vlasto 1695v; Cote ---; SNG Cop 1052ff;
Scarce
ex Munzhandlung Ritter

EnodiaNov 10, 2012
Taras_Diobol_2.JPG
Taras, Calabria61 views325-280 BC
AR Diobol (12mm, 1.02g)
O: Head of Athena right, wearing crested Attic helmet decorated with Skylla.
R: Herakles kneeling right, strangling the Nemean lion; club behind.
cf Vlasto 1308-9; HN Italy 976; Sear 351v
ex Jencek Historical Enterprise



EnodiaNov 10, 2012
Taras_obol.JPG
Taras, Calabria72 views281-228 BC
AR Obol (9mm, 0.31g)
O: Kantharos; three pellets around.
R: Kantharos; tripod to right.
Vlasto 1642v; SNG ANS 1549v; SNG Cop 1075; HN Italy 1076; Sear 356v (K to left)
ex ECIN

The 3rd century was one of great change for Taras, who saw their democracy shatter and their influence evaporate. After repeated conflicts with Rome, Taras finally submitted to a Roman garrison in 272 BC.
EnodiaNov 10, 2012
Taras_Shell_obol.JPG
Taras, Calabria70 views520-473 BC
AR Litra (8mm, 0.84g)
O: Scallop shell with seven teeth, within dotted border.
R: Four spoked wheel.
Vlasto 1108; Cote 7-9; McGill II, 140; SNG ANS 1328; Sear 228; BMC 1 56
ex Alex Malloy

Founded by Spartan refugees in 706 BC, Taras quickly became the major port on the Tarentine Gulf.
Renowned for its purple cloth made from the superior local wool and dye from the abundant murex shell, Taras thrived during the fifth and fourth centuries BC, establishing a democratic government in 473.
EnodiaNov 09, 2012
Taras_Drachm_2.JPG
Taras, Calabria86 views281-272 BC (Period VII)
AR Drachm (16mm, 2.85g)
O: Head of Athena left, wearing crested Attic helmet decorated with Skylla.
R: Owl with open wings standing right on thunderbolt; TAPANTINΩ[N] to left, ΣΩ upward to right.
Vlasto 1077ff; Cote 432; cf McGill II, 139; Hands Period VII, Type VI; SNG ANS 1320; HN Italy 1018; Sear 373 var.
Struck from worn or corroded dies.
ex Holger Siee Munzhandlung

The Owl drachms of Taras began about the same time as the Herakles & Lion diobols (circa 334 BC), and like the diobols were intended as a federal issue. From the beginning these drachms were minted to the lower weight standard which would not be applied to the didrachms of Taras until 281, the time of the Pyrrhic wars.
It is my opinion that all of the 'open wing' type owls are post-Pyrrhic.

1 commentsEnodiaNov 08, 2012
Taras_Drachm.JPG
Taras, Calabria165 views281-272 BC
AR Drachm (15mm, 2.98g)
O: Head of Athena right, wearing crested helmet decorated with Skylla hurling rock; I on neckflap.
R: Owl with closed wings standing left on olive branch; TAPA[N] to right, AΠ monogram to left.
Vlasto 1065; Cote 431; Evans VII, V; SNG France 1947
Very Rare
ex Auctiones GmbH; ex Rutten & Wieland

This type is described by Sir Arthur Evans in ‘The Horsemen of Tarentum’, the same coin which M.P Vlasto later acquired for his own famous collection. This coin isn’t as nice as the Evans/Vlasto specimen, but I was very happy to find it. Left-facing owls are very rare on Tarentine drachms. I have only found one other type with the left facing owl, but that with Athena also facing left (Vlasto 1101, Cote 489).
4 commentsEnodiaNov 05, 2012
Kore_A~0.jpg
GREEK, Sicily, Syracuse (Reign of Hiketas)106 views287-283 BC
AE 23 (23mm, 11.375g, 135o)
O: Head of Persephone (Kore) left, wreathed in grain; ΣΥΡΑΚΟΣΙΩΝ before, pellet and stalk of grain behind.
R: Nike diving biga right, whip in right hand, reigns in left; star above, Σ in exergue.
Sear 1209 / SNG ANS 760 var. (no Σ in ex.) / Calciati II, p. 259, 123.
ex Forvm Ancient Coins
1 commentsEnodiaNov 04, 2012
Emperor_Dude.JPG
Constantius II18 views324-337 AD
AE3/4 (17.5mm, 1.69g)
O: Dude with headband right; FL IVL CONSTANTIVS NOB C.
R: Two guys wearing barrels and holding skateboards, feeding two parking meters between them; GLORIA EXERCITVS, some letters in ex.
Sear 3986
ex E.R Citus collection; ex Sidd Finch.
EnodiaOct 07, 2012
Kore_A.jpg
Syracuse, Reign of Hiketas190 views287-283 BC
AE23 (23mm, 11.375g, 135o)
O: Head of Kore (Persephone) left, wreathed in grain; ΣΥΡΑΚΟΣΙΩΝ before, pellet and stalk of grain behind.
R: Nike driving biga right, whip in right hand, reigns in left; star above, Σ in exergue.
HGC 2, 1446; Calciati II, p. 259, 123; SNG ANS 760 var. (no Σ in ex.); Sear 1209
ex Forvm Ancient Coins

“Apart from Demeter, lady of the golden sword and glorious fruits, she was playing with the deep-bosomed daughters of Oceanus and gathering flowers over a soft meadow, roses and crocuses and beautiful violets, irises also and hyacinths and the narcissus which Earth made to grow at the will of Zeus and to please the Host of Many, to be a snare for the bloom-like girl -- a marvelous, radiant flower. It was a thing of awe whether for deathless gods or mortal men to see: from its root grew a hundred blooms and it smelled most sweetly, so that all wide heaven above and the whole earth and the sea's salt swell laughed for joy. And the girl was amazed and reached out with both hands to take the lovely toy; but the wide-pathed earth yawned there in the plain of Nysa, and the lord, Host of Many, with his immortal horses sprang out upon her -- the Son of Cronos, He who has many names.”
~ The Homeric Hymn to Demeter

One of my favorite coins...
6 commentsEnodiaSep 24, 2012
Arethusa_1~0.JPG
Syracuse, Second Democracy97 views415-405 BC
AE Hemilitron (16mm, 4.59g)
O: Head of Arethusa left, hair in ampyx, wearing necklace and sphendone.
R: Quadripartite incuse, eight-rayed star within incuse at center.
HGC 2, 1481; Sear 1185; CNS II, 16; SNG ANS 398
ex Aegean Numismatics

Arethusa was the Goddess of the local spring at Ortygia, the heart of Syracuse.

A special coin from a very dear friend.
EnodiaSep 22, 2012
ClaClaClaudius_.jpg
Claudius / Minerva44 views41-42 AD
AE As (26mm, 10.22g)
O: Bare head left; TI CLAVDIVS CAESAR AVG PM TR P IMP P P.
R: Minerva advancing right, wielding javelin and holding shield; S-C.
RIC 116 / Cohen 84 / BMC 149 / Sear 639
ex Francis J. Rath

"No one is free who does not lord over himself."
1 commentsEnodiaJun 07, 2012
Hieron_II.JPG
Syracuse, Reign of Hieron II82 views275-215 BC
AE27 (17.93g)
O: Laureate head of Hieron left; plow behind.
R: Horseman prancing right, with couched spear; [IE]PΩNOΣ in ex.
HGC 2, 1547; SNG ANS 919v; SNG Cop 833; Sear 1222v; BMC 2 570; CNS 193
3 commentsEnodiaJun 06, 2012
Katane.JPG
Katane, Sicily29 viewsafter 217 BC (Roman rule)
AE Hexas (16mm, 3.16g)
O: Laureate head of Apollo right.
R: Isis standing right, holding bird in right hand.
SNG ANS 1278; SNG Cop 198; Sear 1074v
Scarce
ex Alex Malloy
EnodiaJun 04, 2012
Gordian_III.JPG
Gordian III / Pax20 views238-244 AD
AE Sestertius (32mm, 26.38g)
O: Laureate bust right; IMP CAES M ANT GORDIANVS AVG.
R: Pax standing facing, head left; PAX AVGVSTI, S-C.
RIC 256a / Cohen 175 / Sear 2493
ex Francis J. Rath
EnodiaJun 03, 2012
Severus_Alexander.JPG
Severus Alexander / Jupiter50 views222-231 AD
AE Sestertius (27mm, 19.30g)
O: Laureate head right, slight drapery over left shoulder; IMP SEV ALEXANDER AVG.
R: Jupiter standing left, holding lightning bolt and sceptre, Alexander at his feet; IOVI CONSERVATORI, S-C.
RIC 558 / Cohen 74 / BMC 692 / Sear 2246

"What you would not have done to yourselves, never do unto others."
1 commentsEnodiaJun 02, 2012
Phillip_Helios.jpg
Macedonian Kingdom, Reign of Philip V66 views221-179 BC
AE Double Unit (26.3mm, 10.175g, 270o)
O: Radiate head of Helios right.
R: Winged thunderbolt; ΒΑΣΙΛΕΩΣ / ΦΙΛΙΠΠΟΥ, ΔΙ monogram above, AI monogram below left , P with pellet in center below right, all within oak wreath.
Mamroth Bronzemünzen 24b, pl. VII, 13; SNG Alpha Bank 1110 ff. var (monograms below); SNG Cop 1258 ff. var (same); AMNG III/2 25 var (same); Sear 6795v
ex Forvm Ancient Coins
2 commentsEnodiaJun 02, 2012
Pyrrhus.JPG
Syracuse, Reign of Pyrrhus69 views278-276 BC
AE24 (23.2mm, 10.505g, 285o)
O: Head of Herakles left, clad in lion-skin headdress; club behind, ΣΥΡΑΚΟΣΙΩΝ before.
R: Athena Promachos advancing right, hurling javelin and holding shield; wreath behind.
HGC 2, 1450; Calciati II p. 324, 177; SNG ANS 847; SNG Cop 809-814; Sear 1213
ex Forvm Ancient Coins
2 commentsEnodiaJun 01, 2012
Akragas_2.JPG
Akragas, Sicily78 views275-240 BC
AE22 (21.8mm, 6.945g, 315o)
O: Laureate head of Zeus Hellanios right; symbols before and behind.
R: Two eagles standing left, devouring hare upon which they stand, nearer head up and wings closed, farther head down and wings open, caduceus above wings.
HGC 2, 159; Calciati p. 212, 125; SNG ANS 1128; Sear 1030; BMC 2, 131
ex Forvm Ancient Coins
EnodiaJun 01, 2012
Corinth_Stater.JPG
Corinth, Corinthia80 views345-307 BC
AR Stater (21mm, 8.15g)
O: Pegasos with pointed wing flying left; koppa below.
R: Head of Athena left, wearing Corinthian helmet; chimaera behind.
Ravel 1010v; Calciati 1, 262; Sear 2630v (Nike behind)
ex Harlan J. Berk
2 commentsEnodiaMay 28, 2012
Vlasto_713~0.JPG
Taras, Calabria147 views281-272 BC (Period VII - The Pyrrhic Hegemony)
AR Didrachm (19mm, 6.34g)
Sostratos magistrate.
O: Warrior on horseback right, holding shield and spears in left hand and thrusting spear downward with right; [E]Y behind, ΣΩΣTP - ATOΣ (magistrate) in two lines below.
R: Taras riding dolphin left, holding cornucopia in left hand and Nike with laurel wreath in right; ΠOΛY to left, thunderbolt to right, T-APA[Σ] below.
Vlasto 713; Evans VII, A2; Cote 371-72; SNG ANS 1084; SNG Cop 874; HN Italy 1001
ex CNG

As the leading Greek city in Magna Graecia Taras was foremost in resisting Roman influence during the third century, forming an alliance with Metapontum and later supporting Pyrrhus of Epirus in his war against Rome from 281-275 BC, the period of this coin.

It was during this time that the standard was reduced to c. 6.5g, and with its distinctly Epirote thunderbolt symbol this specimen represents one of the earliest 'light' didrachms.
3 commentsEnodiaMay 27, 2012
Vlasto_789.jpg
Taras, Calabria106 views281-272 BC (Period VII - The Pyrrhic Hegemony)
AR Didrachm (20mm, 6.44g)
Apollo(...) magistrate.
O: Helmeted warrior on horse cantering left, carrying two javelins and a large round shield decorated with eight-rayed star; ΞΩ behind, [AΠOΛΛΩ] (magistrate) below.
R: Taras (of the plump Dionysiac type) astride dolphin left, holding bunch of grapes in extended right hand, distaff over left shoulder; ANΘ to right, TAPAΣ below.
Vlasto 789-91; Evans VII, F2 or F6; Cote 413; McGill II, 84; SNG ANS 1131-1133; HN Italy 1013
ex Numisantique

The helmeted warrior shown here behind a large shield is a definite departure from the typical image found on this coinage. The earlier naked skirmishers have been replaced by the fully armored cavalryman presented here. This was of course a gradual process, but the evolution becomes more apparent on later issues where the rider is clearly depicted wearing a cuirass.
This plump rendition of Taras also differs greatly from previous images and is actually meant to represent a young Iacchus, the son of Dionysus and Persephone. Similar images can be found on kraters and terracotta votives found in the region. The attributes of Dionysus which he carries show the foreign influence of the chthonic cult of Dionysus upon the city of Taras. This relatively new mystery cult was introduced along side the earlier ouranic cults of Poseidon and Apollo, and the inclusion of Iacchus here represents a distinct link to the Mysteries of Eleusis.
The distaff, in this context, is probably a reference to Ariadne, a wife of Dionysus, but its’ phallic nature also symbolizes the god of ecstasy Himself.

- The Tarantinians Carouse -
The theaters are full, music everywhere,
here debauchery and lewdness, and there
athletic and sophistical contests.
An unwithering wreath adorns the statue
of Dionysus. Not an earthly nook remains
unsprinkled by libations...
~ Kavafy (1933)
2 commentsEnodiaMay 27, 2012
V_703.JPG
Taras, Calabria183 views302-281 BC (Period VI)
AR Didrachm (20mm, 7.68g)
Nikon magistrate.
O: Naked ephebe vaulting from horse galloping left, holding javelin and small shield in left hand; EY above, [NI]KΩN (magistrate) below.
R: Phalanthos astride dolphin left, holding ear of grain; API to left, TAPAΣ to right, spearhead below.
Vlasto 703; Evans VI, E2; Cote 342; HN Italy 969
ex John Jencek

The Tarentine horsemen were renowned throughout the ancient world, serving as mercenary cavalry for many Mediterranean kings including Antigonos I, Demetrios I and Alexander of Epirus. They were so efficient that the term ‘Tarentine Horse’ came to mean any such skirmishing cavalry unit, regardless of their origin.
These were not typical cavalry however, but rather "hippakontistai" (mounted javelinmen), or more specifically "elaphroi", light cavalry which throw javelins and then dismount for close combat.
The scene depicted here is from an equestrian event of the Hyakinthia (the ceremonial games of Hyakinthian Apollo) rather than actual combat, but celebrates those special skills necessary in war. The armed rider would dismount at full gallop, run along side his horse, and then remount in stride.

The didrachm was reduced from c. 7.5g to c. 6.5g after 281 to help pay for Pyrrhus' campaigns against the Romans. However the spearhead on the reverse is an Epirote symbol, making this one of the last coins struck on the old standard.
3 commentsEnodiaMay 27, 2012
Taras_V836.JPG
Taras, Calabria132 views272-235 BC (Period VIII - The Roman Alliance I)
AR Didrachm (18mm, 6.50g)
Lykinos magistrate.
O: Naked boy on horse pacing left, placing wreath on horse's head; ΣY above, ΛYKI - NOΣ (magistrate) in two lines below.
R: Taras astride dolphin left, hurling trident with right hand, chlamys wrapped around left arm; owl behind, TA-PA[Σ] below.
Vlasto 836; Evans VIII, A8; Cote 473; cf McGill II, 92; SNG ANS 1165; SNG Cop 916; SNG France 1999; HN Italy 1025; Sear 374v
ex Olympvs Coins

Following Pyrrhus’ withdrawal Taras was forced to submit to a Roman garrison in 272 BC, although the relationship did not remain entirely antagonistic. Taras remained a free port, the city’s walls were rebuilt by the time of the First Punic War, and they even provided Rome with ships during that struggle.
This would change drastically however when Taras threw in with Hannibal during the Second Punic War.
1 commentsEnodiaMay 27, 2012
Taras_Obol_Grapes.JPG
Taras, Calabria147 views302-228 BC
AR Obol (10mm, 0.53g)
O: Kantharos; three pellets around.
R: Kantharos with bunch of grapes to right; pellets around.
Vlasto 1661 (this coin); Cote ---; HN Italy 1076; Sear 356v
Scarce
From the M.P Vlasto collection. ex Den of Antiquity

Vlasto plate coin, #1661.
The kantharos device on this series of coins, and the bunch of grapes on this particular specimen, probably refer to the influence upon the Tarentines of the local cult of Chthonic Dionysus, and a festival to Him was held annually within the city.
1 commentsEnodiaMay 27, 2012
Kroton.JPG
Kroton, Bruttium82 views480-430 BC
AR Stater (20mm, 7.57g)
O: Tripod-lebes with lion's feet; heron standing right in left field, QPO to right, lemniscate serpents in ex.
R: Tripod-lebes incuse, with dentate border.
SNG ANS 312; SNG Cop 1764v
ex Tom Vossen
2 commentsEnodiaMay 23, 2012
Crispus~0.jpg
Crispus15 views317-326 AD
AE3 (18mm, 2.73g)
O: Laureate bust right; CRISPVS NOB CAES.
R: Laurel wreath; VOT V within, CAESARVM NOSTRORVM around.
Sear 3917v
EnodiaMay 09, 2012
Licinius_I.JPG
Licinius I / Sol9 views308-324 AD
AE3 (19mm, 3.08g)
O: Radiate, draped and cuirassed bust right; IMP LICINIVS P F AVG.
R: Sol standing left, raising right hand and holding globe in left; ? over X to left, ? to right, RP in ex, SOLI INVICTO COMITI.
Rome mint.
cf RIC VII 29-36 / Sear 3806v

EnodiaMay 09, 2012
Claudius_II_ant~0.JPG
Claudius II 'Gothicus' / Fortuna 70 views268-270 AD
AE Antoninianus (19mm, 2.21g)
O: Radiate and draped bust right; IMP CLAVDIVS PF AVG.
R: Fortuna standing left, holding rudder and cornucopia; FORTVNA RED.
RIC 40 / Sear 3203v
ex Jack H. Beymer
EnodiaMay 09, 2012
Aurelian~0.JPG
Aurelian / Pax38 views270-275 AD
AE Antoninianus (21mm, 3.63g)
O: Radiate and cuirassed bust right; IMP AVRELIANVS AVG.
R: Pax advancing left, holding olive branch and scepter; star to left, Q in ex, PAX AVGVSTI.
RIC 232v
ex Kenneth W. Dorney
EnodiaMay 09, 2012
Probus.JPG
Probus18 views276-282 AD
AE Antoninianus (20mm, 3.43g)
O: Radiate, draped and cuirassed bust right; IMP C M AVR PROBVS P F AVG.
R: Female deity standing right, presenting wreath to Probus; RESTITVT ORBIS, Z in field between, XXI in ex.
RIC 925 / Cohen 509 / Sear 3364
ex Jack H. Beymer
EnodiaMay 08, 2012
Valerian.JPG
Valerian I / Orient35 views253-260 AD
AE Antoninianus ()
O: Radiate, draped and cuirassed bust right; IMP C P LIC VALERIANVS AVG.
R: Orient standing right, presenting wreath to Valerian standing left leaning on spear; RESTITVT ORIENTIS.
Some remaining silvering on reverse.
RIC 286 / RSC 188 / Sear 2896
ex M&R Coins
EnodiaMay 08, 2012
Agathokles~0.JPG
Syracuse, Reign of Agathokles47 views317-289 BC
AE20 (7.13g)
O: Young male head (Herakles?) right, wearing tainia; ΣYPAKOΣIΩN before.
R: Lion prowling right; club above.
HGC 2, 1465; SNG Cop 769; Lindgrin 111 527; Sear 1201v; BMC 2 389
ex Classica Antiquities
2 commentsEnodiaMay 08, 2012
Hadrian.JPG
Hadrian / Salus36 views119-138 AD
Orichalcum Dupondius (25mm, 13.39g)
O: Radiate bust right, slightly draped; IMP CAESAR TRAIANVS HADRIANUS AVG PM TR P COS III.
R: Salus standing left, foot on globe, holding patera and rudder; SALVS PVBLICA, S-C.
RIC 604a / Cohen 1358 / van Meter 110 / BMC 1237
ex Francis J. Rath
1 commentsEnodiaMay 08, 2012
Boeotia.JPG
Thebes, Boeotia 54 views426-395 BC
AR Hemidrachm (13mm, 2.51g)
O: Boeotian shield.
R: 0E - BH on either side of kantharos, club above, all within incuse square.
SNG Cop 296; SNG Delepierre 1359; Sear 2385; BMC 8,78
ex Vaughn Rare Coin Gallery

"The god commands us to expel from the land of Thebes
An old defilement we are sheltering.
It is a deathly thing, beyond cure;
We must not let it feed upon us longer."
~ Kreon (Aeschylus, Oedipus Rex)
2 commentsEnodiaMay 06, 2012
Carthage_2.JPG
Carthage, Zeugitana 45 viewscirca 4th-3rd century BC
AE16 (2.99g)
O: Head of Tanit left, wreathed in corn, wearing earring and necklace; pellet behind.
R: Horse standing right, palm tree in background; pellet at right.
Sear 6444v
1 commentsEnodiaMay 05, 2012
Thasos_tet.JPG
Thasos, Thrace127 viewsafter 148 BC
AR Tetradrachm (33mm, 16.86g)
O: Head of young Dionysus right, wreathed in ivy and flowers.
R: Herakles standing nude left, holding club and lion's skin; ΣΩTHPOΣ left, HPAKΛOYΣ right, ΘAΣIΩN in ex.
SNG Cop 1040; Sear 1759

Inhabited since prehistoric times, the island of Thasos is said to be the mythological home of the Sirens.
Phoenician traders occupied Thasos by the late ninth century BC, drawn by her prolific gold mines. A hundred years later Greek colonists from Paros settled on the island and prospered from Thasos’ gold and marble production, as well as her fertile vineyards. Thasian wine was renowned throughout the Mediterranean, for which they honored Dionysus on their coinage.
A brush with the Persian army under King Darius at the beginning of the fifth century caused Thasos to increase her production of war ships, and after the defeat of Xerxes in 480 BC Thasos joined the Delian League. However a dispute with Athens over mining interests on the Thracian mainland led Thasos to revolt in 465 BC, only to submit after the Athenians destroyed her ships and razed the city walls.
The island was occupied by Sparta from 404 until 393 BC, when Thasos fell to Athens, who eventually granted her independence. Thasos then came under the control of Phillip II of Macedonia around 340 BC, who immediately seized the gold mines. Thasos remained a part of the Macedonian Empire until falling under Roman rule in 197 BC.
4 commentsEnodiaMay 05, 2012
Phistelia.JPG
Phistelia, Campania68 views325-275 BC
AR Obol (10mm, 0.55g)
O: Head of Nymph facing slightly left.
R: Lion standing left, right forepaw raised; star above, [serpent] in exergue(?).
SNG ANS 590; HN Italy 619
From the Jörg Müller Collection; ex CNG

Very little is known of Phistelia, a city accounted for only by its coinage. It is believed to have been located by the sea due to the clam shell device used on many of the coin types issued there.
2 commentsEnodiaMay 04, 2012
Chalkis.JPG
Chalkis, Euboia70 views340-294 BC
AR Drachm (18mm, 3.46g)
O: Head of nymph Chalkis (or Hera?) right, hair rolled.
R: Eagle flying right, holding serpent in his talons and beak; trophy of arms below.
SNG Cop 432; Sear 2482
From the Wallace and BCD collections. ex Pegasi Numismatics

Chalkis was an important Ionian colony on the island of Euboia, and the homeland of many Greek colonies in Magna Graecia, including Cumae and Rhegium.
After the ruin of neighboring Eretria by Athens, Chalkis was left as the supreme power in the region. However Athens conquered Chalkis in 506 BC, establishing a settlement of 4000 Athenians on the island and leaving all of Euboea as a dependency. A rebellion in 446 was put down by Perikles of Athens, who sent more colonists to settle nearby Histiaea, establishing a firm control of this island which was so strategically important to the security of the mother city.
By 410 Euboea had once again regained its’ independence, but fell to the Macedonians under Phillip II, and then finally to Rome.
1 commentsEnodiaMay 04, 2012
Punic_AR.JPG
Akragas, Sicily117 views213-211 BC (Punic Occupation)
AR 1/4 Shekel (14mm, 2.11g)
O: Head of Triptolemus right, wreathed in corn.
R: Horse galloping right; Punic letters 'ht' below.
SNG Cop 379; HGC 2, 174; Burnett, Enna 151; de Luynes 3965; Weber 8540; Walker Group II, 1st Series
ex Tom Cederlind

One of the leading centers of Greek influence in the west during the 6th and 5th centuries BC, Akragas was sacked by Carthage in 406. Conquered by Rome in 262 and retaken by Carthgage 8 years later, the city never again regained its' former status. Akragas suffered greatly during the Second Punic War (218-201), with this coin being struck just before the city fell to Rome once again in 210.
Although renamed Agrigentum, its' culture remained essentially Greek for another few hundred years until Rome granted the inhabitants citizenship after Julius Caesar's death in 44 BC.

This coin was struck on the Carthaginian standard and of debased silver.
3 commentsEnodiaMay 03, 2012
Helios_Rose.JPG
Macedonian Kingdom, Reign of Perseus 191 views171-170 BC
AR Drachm (15mm, 2.81g)
Uncertain mint in Thessaly
Hermios magistrate.
O: Head of Helios facing 3/4 right, hair loose.
R: Rose with bud on right; I-Ω to either side of stem, EPMIAΣ (magistrate) above.
Price, Larissa p. 241; SNG Keckman 795; Sear 5092
ex Jack H. Beymer

Originating from the Sitichoro, Thessaly hoard of 1968, the long held attribution for this pseudo-Rhodian series was 'Rhodian Peraia' or 'Islands off Karia', etc, and probably used to pay mercenaries. This was the attribution I bought the coin with, and it served for nearly twenty years.
However a 1988 article by Richard Ashton claims these coins were actually issued by Perseus of Macedon during the Third Macedonian War to pay his Cretan mercenaries in a coin which was familiar to them, that is, the classic 'Helios/Rose' coinage of Rhodes. This is the attribution I use today.
Selene Psoma further suggests an even more specific location based on style and weight standard, pinpointing this issue in Thasian Peraia, so it will be interesting to see what further study may reveal.
6 commentsEnodiaMay 02, 2012
Picture_002.jpg
Romano-Egyptian Votive Statue106 viewsCirca 1st century BC - 1st century AD
5.5 inches tall
ex Superior Galleries

Terracotta votive statue of the Hellenistic god Harpokrates.

Harpokrates, the god of silence, is the Hellenistic adaptation of the Egyptian child-god Horus, and as such was said to be the son of Isis and Serapis.

Update;
This item donated to the Hallie Ford museum in Salem Oregon.
3 commentsEnodiaApr 22, 2012
Taras_2.JPG
GREEK, Italy, Calabria, Taras151 views281-272 BC (Period VII - The Pyrrhic Hegemony)
AR Didrachm (20mm, 6.44g)
Apollo(...) magistrate.
O: Warrior in crested helmet on horse cantering left, carrying large round shield and two spears; ΞΩ behind, [AΠOΛΛΩ] (magistrate) below.
R: Taras (of the plump Dionysiac type) riding dolphin left, holding bunch of grapes in extended right hand, distaff over left shoulder; ANΘ to right, TAPAΣ below.
Vlasto 789-91 / Evans VII, F2 or F6 / Cote 413 / SNG ANS 1131-1133 / HN Italy 1013

This plump rendition of Taras, differing greatly from previous images, is actually meant to represent a young Iacchus, the son of Dionysus and Persephone, and signifies the influence of the chthonic cult of Dionysus upon the religion of Taras.
EnodiaApr 08, 2012
Hiketas_Eagle.JPG
Syracuse, Reign of Hiketas 44 views288-279 BC
AE22 (22mm, 7.46g)
O: Laureate and beardless head of Zeus Hellanios right.
R: Eagle standing left on thunderbolt with wings open; A before.
HGC 2, 1449; Calciati 313,168; SNG ANS 799; Favorito 50; Sear 1212v
ex Classica Antiquities

The epithet Hellanios refers to Zeus’ aspect as ‘Bringer of the Rain’.
1 commentsEnodiaApr 01, 2012
Fourth_Democracy.JPG
Syracuse, Fourth Democracy89 views289-288 BC
AE Litra (21mm, 9.57g, 7h)
O: Head of Artemis Soteira right, quiver over shoulder; ΣΩΤΕΙΡΑ before.
R: Winged thunderbolt; ΣΥΡΑΚ−ΟΣΙΩΝ above and below.
HGC 2, 1461; Calciati 138; SNG ANS 749; Sear 1207v
Scarce
ex Roma Numismatics

Somewhat scarcer than the earlier ΑΓΑΘΟΚΛΕΟΣ−ΒΑΣΙΛΕΩΣ types, this coin was struck during the Agathokles-mandated but short lived Fourth Democracy.
2 commentsEnodiaMar 15, 2012
Julian_II.JPG
Julian II 'The Philosopher' (as Augustus)76 views361-363 AD
AE3 (19.8mm, 3.12g)
O: Diademed, helmeted and cuirassed bust left, holding shield and spear; DN FL CL JVLIANVS AVG.
R: VOT X MVLT XX in four lines within wreath; NIK[A] below.
Nicomedia mint, officina A.
RIC VIII Nicomedia, 123; ERIC II Julian 422; Elmer 132; Sear 4074v
Some smoothing, re-patinated.
ex Nemesis Ancients

"The end and aim of the Cynic philosophy, as indeed of every philosophy, is happiness, but happiness that consists in living according to nature, and not according to the opinions of the multitude. "
~ Julian
3 commentsEnodiaSep 28, 2011
V836.JPG
GREEK, Italy, Calabria, Taras150 views272-240 BC (Period VIII - The Roman Alliance)
AR Didrachm (18mm, 6.6g)
Lykinos magistrate.
O: Naked boy on horse pacing left, placing wreath on horse's head; ΣY (engraver) above, AYKI - NOΣ (magistrate) in two lines below.
R: Taras astride dolphin left, hurling trident with right hand, chlamys wrapped around left arm; owl behind; TA-PA[Σ] below.
Vlasto 836 / Evans VIII, A8 / Cote 473 / SNG ANS 1165 / SNG Cop 916 / SNG France 1999 / HN Italy 1025 / Sear 374v
ex Olympvs Coins

Following Pyrrhus’ withdrawal Taras was forced to submit to a Roman garrison in 272 BC, the period of this coin.

2 commentsEnodiaSep 03, 2011
Taras_V_703_x200.JPG
GREEK, Italy, Calabria, Taras159 views302-281 BC (Period VI)
AR Didrachm (20mm, 7,67g)
Nikon magistrate.
O: Naked ephebe dismounting left, holding shield and spear in left hand; EY (engraver) above, [NI]KΩN (magistrate) below.
R: Phalanthos astride dolphin left, holding ear of grain; API (engraver) to left, TAPAΣ to right, spearhead below.
Vlasto 703 / Evans VI, E2 / Cote 342 / HN Italy 969.
Scarce
ex John Jencek

The didrachm was reduced from c. 7.5g to c. 6.5g after 281 to help pay for Pyrrhus' campaigns against the Romans. However the spearhead on the reverse is an Epirote symbol, making this one of the last coins struck on the old standard.
2 commentsEnodiaAug 26, 2011
Vlasto_713.JPG
GREEK, Italy, Calabria, Taras199 views281-272 BC (Period VII - The Pyrrhic Hegemony)
AR Didrachm (19mm, 6.37g)
Sostratos magistrate.
O: Warrior on horseback right, holding shield and spears in left hand and thrusting spear downward with right; [Γ]Y (engraver) behind, ΣΩΣTP - ATOΣ (magistrate) in two lines below.
R: Taras riding dolphin left, holding cornucopia in left hand and Nike with laurel wreath in right; ΠOΛY to left, thunderbolt to right, T-APA[Σ] below.
Vlasto 713 / Evans VII, A2 / Cote 371-72 / SNG ANS 1084 / HN Italy 1001
ex CNG

Taras was foremost in resisting Roman influence during the third century, forming an alliance with Metapontum and supporting Pyrrhus of Epirus in his war against Rome from 281-275 BC.
3 commentsEnodiaAug 26, 2011
Metapontum_200z~0.JPG
GREEK, Metapontum, Lucania167 viewsAR Didrachm (21mm, 7.8g)
O: Head of Demeter right, wreathed in grain and wearing triple earring and necklace; ΔAI under chin.
R: Ear of barley with seven grains, leaf to right; plow above leaf, MAX below, META to left.
SNG ANS 470 / SNG Cop 1227 / HN Italy 1581 / Johnston C-1 / Sear 416

Founded around 700 BC by Achaean colonists, Metapontum was located at the north of the Gulf of Taras between the rivers Bradanus and Casuentus.
1 commentsEnodiaAug 22, 2011
Velia_2.JPG
GREEK, Italy, Lucania, Velia182 views350-310 BC
AR Didrachm (21mm, 7.5g)
-Kleudoros Group-
O: Head of Athena right, wearing crested Attic helmet ornamented with griffin.
R: Lion prowling left; Φ above, engraver's monogram >E (Kleudoros) below, YEΛHTΩN in ex.
Williams 297 / SNG ANS 1312 / SNG Ashmolean 1233 / HN Italy 1289 / Sear 460v
ex Jack H. Beymer

"... cast earth upon my body
And seek haven in Velia once more..."
~ Vergil
2 commentsEnodiaAug 21, 2011
Argos_Argolis.JPG
GREEK, Argolis, Argos, AR Triobol152 viewscirca 3rd century BC
AR Triobol (15mm, 2.2g)
O: Forepart of wolf left.
R: Large A, eagle standing right on thunderbolt beneath; IP-EΩ-NO-Σ (Hieronos, magistrate) in corners, all within shallow incuse square.
SNG Cop 42; BCD Peloponnesos 1177; SNG Delepierre 2273 ; Sear 2795v
ex Empire Coins

"... one of the three cities dearest to Me"
~ Hera (Iliad)
1 commentsEnodiaAug 21, 2011
RG_1.jpg
Roman Glass Vessel117 viewsCirca 4th-5th century AD
5.5cm tall, 4.2cm wide.
ex Zurqieh

Nice Roman perfume bottle with flared rim, pinched neck and globular body, probably of Mid-Eastern origin.
Fully intact with a pale yellow tint.

“Then with fine oil, she smoothed herself, and this, her scented oil, unstoppered in the bronze-floored house of Zeus, cast fragrance over earth and heaven.”
~ Homer (Iliad 14, 142-145)

Update;
This item donated to the Hallie Ford museum in Salem Oregon.
6 commentsEnodiaFeb 18, 2011
Deka_200.jpg
Replica90 viewsSyracusan Dekadrachm
(silver-plated bronze)
Cast replica in the style of Kimon.
EnodiaJan 09, 2011
Metapontum_Demeter_200.JPG
Demeter214 viewsMetapontum, Lucania
AR Didrachm (21mm, 7.8g)
330-300 BC
O: Head of Demeter right, wreathed in grain and wearing triple earring and necklace; ΔAI under chin.
R: Ear of barley with seven grains, leaf to right; plow above leaf, MAX below, META to left.
SNG ANS 470 / SNG Cop 1227 / HN Italy 1581 / Johnston C-1 / Sear 416v

2 commentsEnodiaNov 15, 2010
Cilicia_Owl_200.JPG
Soloi, Cilicia49 views3rd-2nd Century BC
AE20 (7.12g)
O: Head of Athena right, wearing crested Corinthian helmet.
R: Owl standing right, head facing; Θ left, ΣOΛEΩN to right.
SNG BN 1207; SNG Levante 863-864; Sear 5622v; BMC 21 151,42
ex Jack H. Beymer

An important coastal city, Soloi may have originally been a Rhodian colony. Soloi thrived throughout the Hellenistic period, but was finally destroyed by Tigranes of Armenia during the 1st century BC.
1 commentsEnodiaAug 28, 2010
Faustina_Sr.JPG
Faustina I / Ceres195 viewsAR Denarius (18mm, 2.95gm)
after 141 AD
O: Draped bust right, hair arranged in chignon; DIVA FAVSTINA.
R: Ceres, veiled, standing right, holding corn ears and sceptre; AVGVSTA.
RSC 93 / RIC 358 / Sear 4581 / BMC 389 / Strack 475
ex Vaughn Rare Coin Gallery
2 commentsEnodiaAug 22, 2010
ArgosWolf200.JPG
Argos, Argolis142 viewscirca 3rd century BC
AR Triobol (15mm, 2.25g)
O: Forepart of wolf left.
R: Large A, eagle standing right on thunderbolt beneath; IP-EΩ-NO-Σ (Hieronos, magistrate) in corners, all within shallow incuse square.
SNG Cop 42; BCD Peloponnesos 1177; SNG Delepierre 2273; Sear 2795v
ex Empire Coins

The origins of Argos are pre-Mycenaean, making it one of the most ancient cities in Greece.
Argos played a prominent role in The Iliad, being claimed by Hera as "one of the three cities dearest to Me". While they did supply ships and soldiers (including the hero Diomedes) for Agamemnon's war with Troy, Argos later remained neutral during the Graeco-Persian wars. And though ostensibly allied with Athens during her war with Sparta at the end of the 5th century BC, Argos was basically a non-participant.

Recent speculation dates this coin to the time of Cleopatra VII and may in fact have been issued by her. I remain skeptical, however it is an interesting theory.
5 commentsEnodiaJun 20, 2010
_Velia200.JPG
Lion - Velia, Lucania223 viewsAR Didrachm (21mm, 7.5gm)
350-310 BC
O: Head of Athena right, wearing crested Attic helmet ornamented with griffin.
R: Lion prowling left; Φ above, engraver's monogram >K (Kleudoros) below, YEΛHTΩN in ex.
Williams 297 / SNG ANS 1312 / SNG Ashmolean 1233 / HN Italy 1289 / Sear 460v
3 commentsEnodiaMar 13, 2010
_1Trajan200.jpg
Trajan / Mars 122 views103-111 AD
AR Denarius (18mm, 2.86g)
O: Laureate and slightly draped bust right; IMP NERVA TRAIANVS AVG GER DACICVS.
R: Mars advancing right, holding spear, trophy on shoulder; PM TR P COS V P P.
RIC 80v
Scarce
ex M&R Coins

From a previous comment by Curtis Clay;
"A scarce type with these legends, and perhaps unpublished with this laureate and draped bust type."
4 commentsEnodiaDec 30, 2009
_1Caracalla200.jpg
Caracalla / Salus63 views212 AD
AR Denarius (18mm, 2.83g)
O: Laureate head right; ANTONINVS PIVS AVG BRIT.
R: Salus seated left, feeding snake from patera and holding cornucopia; PM TR P XV COS III P P.
RSC 206 / RIC 196 / BMC 45 / Sear 6826
ex Jack H. Beymer
3 commentsEnodiaDec 29, 2009
_1Commodus200.jpg
Commodus / Providentia 27 views181-182 AD
AR Denarius (17mm, 2.47g)
O: Laureate head right; M COMMODV[S A]NTONINVS AVG.
R: Providentia standing left, holding wand over globe and sceptre; [TR P] VI IMP IIII COS III P P.
RIC 19l RSC 804; Cohen 804; Sear 1632; BMC 66
ex Jack H. Beymer
EnodiaDec 29, 2009
_1Cilo200.jpg
L. Flaminius Cilo78 views109-108 BC
AR Denarius (17mm, 3.91g)
O: Helmeted head of Roma right; X beneath chin, ROMA behind.
R: Victory in biga right; L FLAMINI below horses, CILO in ex.
Crawford 302-1; Sydenham 540; RSC Flaminia 1; BMC Italy 537
ex Jack H. Beymer
3 commentsEnodiaDec 28, 2009
_1Sergius200.jpg
M. Sergius Silus154 views116-115 BC
AR Denarius (17mm, 3.76g)
O: Helmeted head of Roma right; ROMA and * behind, EX.S.C before.
R: Horseman galloping left, holding sword and severed head of Barbarian; Q in field, M SERGI below, SILVS in ex.
Crawford 286-1; Sydenham 534; RSC Sergia 1; BMC Italy 517
ex Francis J. Rath
5 commentsEnodiaDec 28, 2009
_1Baebius200.jpg
M. Baebius Q.f. Tamphilus53 views137 BC
AR Denarius (18mm, 3.92g)
O: Helmeted head of Roma left; X beneath chin, TAMP[IL] behind.
R: Apollo in quadriga right, holding bow and arrow; ROM[A] below, M BAEBI Q F in ex.
Crawford 236-1 a-d,f; Sydenham 489; RSC Baebia 12; BMC Italy 935
ex Amphora Coins
EnodiaDec 28, 2009
_1HekateStraonikeia.jpg
Stratonikeia, Caria46 viewsafter 81 BC
AE17 (2.90g)
O: Laureate head of Hekate right, wearing cresent moon headdress.
R: Pegasos flying left.
SNG von Aulock 8159; SNG Cop 491; Sear 4941; BMC 150, 28
ex Gerhard Rohde

(originally a gift from my dog Liebe, used to pay the Ferryman)
EnodiaDec 08, 2009
_1aMessanax.JPG
Messana (under the Mamertini)61 views288-278 BC
AE Tetras (16mm, 2.93g)
O: Laureate head of Ares right.
R: Bull butting right; MAMEPTINΩN in ex., spear head below.
HGC 2, 878; Calciati 8; Sarstrom 62; Mini' 11; Sear 1138v (bull left)
Rare
ex M&R Coins

"Even brave sailors fear rock-caved Charybdis,
Who drinks the waves, vomits them out again,
And Skylla with her barking dogs around her
Churning the waves that circle Sicily"
~ Ovid
EnodiaSep 21, 2009
1AlexanderDrachm~0.JPG
Macedonian Kingdom48 viewsafter 323 BC
AR Drachm (18mm, 3.91g)
O: Head of Alexander as Herakles right, clad in lion's skin.
R: Zeus enthroned left, holding eagle and sceptre, his right leg drawn back; buckle symbol in field to left, monogram (cresent above A) beneath throne, AΛEΞANΔPOY behind.
Lampsakos mint (posthumous issue).
cf Price 1372; Sear 6730v
ex Jack H. Beymer
EnodiaJun 23, 2009
_1Arrowheads.JPG
Roman Arrowheads51 views1st century BC - 3rd century AD

Two bronze tri-lobe arrowheads, 20mm and 33mm.
EnodiaMar 16, 2009
1FaceB.jpg
Ceramic Face50 viewsLate Hellenistic - Early Roman
1.7"
ex Olympvs Coins

Update;
This item donated to the Hallie Ford museum in Salem Oregon.
EnodiaMar 13, 2009
_1BesAmulet.JPG
Amulet of Bes61 views1st century BC - 1st century AD
1.25" tall

A small terracotta amulet of the god Bes, from Roman Egypt.

Bes was an apotropaic deity, the protector of the home. As such He is often depicted on everyday household items such as chairs, pottery, or even on the walls of the house itself.
Shown here wearing His plumed headdress and panther skin, Bes (possibly from the Nubian “Besa“, or ‘Protector‘) may have originally been a cat god. Why He evolved into a dwarf is not known.

Update;
This item donated to the Hallie Ford museum in Salem Oregon.

EnodiaMar 12, 2009
_1RomanGlass.JPG
Candlestick Unguentarium96 viewsCirca 1st-3rd Century AD
10.9cm tall.
ex Apollux

Roman glass candlestick unguentarium with flared rim and flattened base, possibly from Syria.
Fully intact with nice mottled green iridescence.

" ... they drove about in chariots with seats, through the woods and groves, just as wild beasts do, holding in their hands the sacred frankincense, and the fragrant dates, and cassia, and the delicate perfumes of Syria."
~ Melanippides of Melos (Danaides)

Update;
This item donated to the Hallie Ford museum in Salem Oregon.
3 commentsEnodiaMar 12, 2009
_1Unguentarium.JPG
Unguentarium91 viewsCirca 1st-3rd century AD
10.15cm tall.
ex Ancient Artifacts & Treasures

Roman glass testtube unguentarium, possibly from Syria. Fully intact with a slight blue tint.

Perfumes
"I shall scent my skin all over to attract my lovers... It is better for a courtesan to know the Lydian perfumes than the customs of the Peloponnesus".
~ 'Bilitis' (Pierre Louÿs)

Update;
This item donated to the Hallie Ford museum in Salem Oregon.

1 commentsEnodiaMar 12, 2009
_1ClodiusDenarius.JPG
P. Clodius M.f. Turrinus98 views42 BC
AR Denarius (18mm, 3.86g)
O: Laureate head of Apollo right; lyre behind.
R: Diana Lucifera standing facing, holding two long torches, bow and quiver on her shoulder; M.F - CLODIVS flanking.
RSC Claudia 15; Crawford 424-23; Sydenham 1117; CRI 184; RSC Claudia 15; BMC 4290
ex Sayles & Lavender

TO APOLLO AND DIANA
Virgins, sing the Virgin Huntress;
Youths, the youthful Phoebus sing;
Sing Latona, she who bore them
Dearest to the eternal King:
Sing the heavenly maid who roves
Joyous, through the mountain groves;
She who winding waters loves;
Let her haunts her praises ring!

Sing the vale of Peneus’ river;
Sing the Delian deity;
The shoulder glorious with its quiver’
And the lyre of Mercury.
From our country, at our prayer -
Famine, plague, and tearful war
These, benign, shall drive afar
To Persia’s plains or Britain’s sea.
~ Horace (Odes 1,21)
2 commentsEnodiaFeb 15, 2009
1SeptimiusSeverus~0.JPG
Septimius Severus 93 views201-210 AD
AR Denarius (18mm, 3.13g)
O: Laureate head right; SEVERVS PIVS AVG.
R: Severus, togate and veiled, standing left holding olive branch; FVNDATOR PACIS.
RSC 205 / RIC 265 / BMC 330-31 / Sear 1753
ex Classica Antiquities
2 commentsEnodiaFeb 14, 2009
_Vespasian~0.JPG
Vespasian / Securitas79 views75 AD
AR Denarius (18mm, 3.36g)
O: Laureate bust right; IMP CAESAR VESPASIANVS AVG.
R: Securitas seated left with foot on stool and left arm on chair; PON MAX TR P COS VI.
RSC 367 / RIC 774 / BMC 165
ex Bart Lewis

"It becomes an emperor to die standing."
2 commentsEnodiaFeb 13, 2009
_OlbiaDolphin.JPG
Olbia, Sarmatia109 viewscirca 5th century BC
AE unit (23.5mm, 0.84g)
Cast bronze dolphin with raised spine and dorsal fin.
Sear 1684v
ex Forvm Ancient Coins
1 commentsEnodiaJun 21, 2008
_FaustinaDenarius.JPG
Faustina I / Ceres155 viewsafter 141 AD
AR Denarius (18mm, 2.98g)
O: Draped bust right, hair arranged in chignon; DIVA FAVSTINA.
R: Ceres, veiled, standing right, holding corn ears and sceptre; AVGVSTA.
RSC 93 / RIC 358 / Sear 4581 / BMC 389 / Strack 475
ex Vaughn Rare Coin Gallery
6 commentsEnodiaMay 28, 2008
_SevAlHekate.JPG
Severus Alexander / Hekate113 viewsThyatira, Lydia
223-235 AD
AE25 (7.36g)
O: Laureate, draped and cuirassed bust right;
R: Hekate Selene, head facing left, wearing a short chiton and holding two torches, full moon around shoulders (billowing veil?); ΘV - ATEI - P - HNΩN.
SNG Fitzwilliam 1374
ex Ancient Imports

When at thy coming my father has given thee the deadly teeth from the dragon's jaws for sowing, then watch for the time when the night is parted in twain, then bathe in the stream of the tireless river, and alone, apart from others, clad in dusky raiment, dig a rounded pit; and therein slay a ewe, and sacrifice it whole, heaping high the pyre on the very edge of the pit. And propitiate only-begotten Hekate, daughter of Perses, pouring from a goblet the hive-stored labour of bees. And then, when thou hast heedfully sought the grace of the goddess, retreat from the pyre; and let neither the sound of feet drive thee to turn back, nor the baying of hounds, lest haply thou shouldst maim all the rites and thyself fail to return duly to thy comrades.
~ Apollonius of Rhodes (Argonautica 3,1028-1051)
2 commentsEnodiaMay 11, 2008
1ConstantiusI.JPG
Constantius I 'Chlorus' (as Caesar)47 views293-305 AD
AE Antoninianus (pre-reform) (21mm, 2.74g)
O: Radiate and draped bust right; FL VAL CONSTANTIVS NOB CAES.
R: Constantius standing right, receiving Victory on globe from Jupiter standing left; HA in field beneath, CONCORDIA MILITVM.
RIC 672 / Cohen 20 / Sear 3665
ex Jack H. Beymer
EnodiaApr 11, 2008
1AlexanderAE.JPG
Macedonian Kingdom52 views336-323 BC
AE11 (1.22g)
O: Head of Alexander as Herakles right, clad in lion's skin.
R: AΛE / ΞANΔPOY above and beneath club; bow and quiver below.
Forrer-Weber 2145; Sear 6745
ex Thomas D. Walker
EnodiaApr 09, 2008
1Bithynia.JPG
Bithynian Kingdom, Reign of Prusias I73 views228-185 BC
AE17 (3.88g)
O: Laureate head of Apollo right.
R: BAΣIΛEΩΣ and ΠPOYΣIOY on either side of quiver and bow.
SNG Cop 146; SNG von Aulock 250; Sear 7263; BMC 13 209,9
1 commentsEnodiaApr 09, 2008
1Diocletian.JPG
Diocletian31 views284-305 AD
AE Antoninianus (22mm, 2.83g)
O: Radiate, draped and cuirassed bust right; IMP CC VAL DIOCLETIANVS PF AVG.
R: Diocletian receiving Victory from Hercules; IOV ET HERCV CONSER AVGG, XXI in ex.
RIC 275v
ex M&R Coins
EnodiaApr 09, 2008
1Sikyon.JPG
Sikyon, Sikyonia40 views323-251 BC
AE12 (1.87g)
O: Dove flying left.
R: Σ within olive wreath.
SNG Cop 82; Sear 2781v
ex Amphora Coins

(Used to pay the Ferryman)
EnodiaApr 09, 2008
1CorinthAE.JPG
Corinth, Corinthia41 views350-300 BC
AE12 (1.56g)
O: Pegasos with pointed wing flying left.
R: Ornamented trident-head.
Sear 2647v
ex Amphora Coins
EnodiaApr 09, 2008
1Phalanna.JPG
Phalanna, Thessaly85 viewscirca 350 BC
AE15 (3.62g)
O: Young male head right.
R: Head of nymph Phalanna right, hair in sakkos; ΦAΛANNAIΩN above.
SNG Cop 203-05; Rogers 452; Sear 2180v; BMC Thessaly 41,4v
ex M&R Coins
1 commentsEnodiaApr 08, 2008
1Gambrion.JPG
Gambrion, Mysia34 viewscirca 350 BC
AE15 (4.13g)
O: Laureate head of Apollo right.
R: Large 16-rayed star.
SNG Cop 146; Sear 3871v; BMC 15, 62
ex Jack H. Beymer
EnodiaApr 07, 2008
1Ephesos.JPG
Ephesos, Ionia188 views350-288 BC
AE12 (2.09g)
O: Bee with straight wings, seen from above; E - Φ on either side.
R: Stag kneeling left, looking back; astragalos above.
SNG Cop 245v; Sear 4402v; BMC 14,55
ex Jack H. Beymer
13 commentsEnodiaApr 07, 2008
1Lampsakos.JPG
Lampsakos, Mysia70 views390-330 BC
AR Trihemiobol (10mm, 1.32g)
O: Janiform female head, wearing tainia and earring.
R: Head of Athena right, wearing Corinthian helmet.
SNG France 1195; Sear 3893; BMC 15 83,43
1 commentsEnodiaApr 07, 2008
1SyracuseOctopus.JPG
Syracuse, Second Democracy83 views440-425 BC
AE10 (Onkia) (1.21g)
O: Head of Arethusa right, hair in koymbos; two dolphins before and behind.
R: Octopus; three pellets around.
HGC 2, 1428; SNG ANS 383; Sear 1184v
ex Pegasi Numismatics
EnodiaApr 07, 2008
1Miletos.JPG
Miletos, Ionia80 viewscirca 525 BC
AR Twelth Stater (Diobol?) (9mm, 1.11g)
O: Head of roaring lion left.
R: Star ornament within incuse square.
SNG Cop 944v; Grose 8210; Sear 3533; BMC 14 186,34
1 commentsEnodiaApr 07, 2008
   
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