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Search results - "Sybaris"
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ACHAIA, Aigieon. 37-31 BC.71 viewsAE hexachalkon (5.67 g)
Theoxios and Kletaios, magistrates.
obv: Laureate head of Zeus right
rev: Zeus standing right, holding eagle on outstretched arm and preparing to cast thunderbolt; ΘEOΞIOΣ KΛHTAIOΣ around. Kroll, Bronze 2; BCD Peloponnesos 436.

Located along the northern coast of the Peloponnesos, Achaia was a narrow territory between Sicyon and Elis. One theory suggests that Achaia’s original inhabitants were driven to the area from Achaia Phthoitis, which itself was located across the Gulf of Corinth in southern Thessaly. A number of prehistoric and Mycenaean ruins in the western part of the Achaia indicate that the district was long inhabited, even into remote antiquity. Twelve city-states were located there: Aigai, Aigira, Aigion, Bura, Dyme, Helike, Olenos, Patrai, Pherai, Pelene, Rhypes, and Tritaia. Achaian colonies were established in Magna Graecia at Kroton, Kaulonia, Metapontion, and Sybaris. From the mid-5th century onward, much of the history of Achaia is interconnected with the Achaian League.
Dino
Kroton.jpg
Bruttium, Kroton (Circa 425-350 BC)25 viewsAR Stater

7.73 g

Obverse: Eagle standing left, head right, on stag’s head

Reverse: Tripod; ivy leaf to left, QPO to right.

HN Italy 2146; SNG ANS 351-2

Obeying a directive of the oracle of Delphi, A group of Achaean settlers founded Kroton around 710 BC. Like its neighbor to the north, Sybaris, it soon became a city of power and wealth. Kroton was especially celebrated for its successes in the Olympic Games from 588 BC onward (Milo of Kroton being the most famous of its athletes).

The philosopher Pythagoras established himself there about 530 BC and formed a society of 300 disciples who were sympathetic toward aristocratic government. In 510 BC Kroton was strong enough to defeat the Sybarites and raze their city to the ground. However, shortly after the sack of Sybaris the disciples of Pythagoras were driven out, and a democracy established.

The obverse was comparable with similar types on probably contemporary coins from Elis (which put on the Olympic games at the nearby sanctuary of Olympia) The coins of both cities were thus likely issued for athletic festivals in honor of Zeus. In Kroton’s case the coins probably commemorated its citizens’ Olympic victories with the eagle representing Zeus who presided over Olympia and the games themselves. The tripod (reverse) represented the divine sanction for the town's founding from the Oracle of Delphi (who sat on a three legged stool when producing her oracles).
2 commentsNathan P
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CALABRIA, Taras. Circa 510-500 BC. AR Incuse Nomos11 views8,03 g; 24 mm; 11 h
Phalanthos riding dolphin right, extending left arm, holding dolphin with right hand; crowning Nike to left; shell below
Rv. Incuse of obverse, but ethnic in relief.
HNItaly 826; Vlasto 68. The first issue of Tarentine coinage. Very rare. Lightly toned and in fine archaic style, extremely fine.

I got this great piece from an auction last fall and it was the most important acquisition for me.
Taras incuse stater is more compact and thicker than Kaulonia and Sybaris incuse stater. It was dibble (or triple) striked and the details were hard to detect. We can found slight trace on the Taras’s head and his left hand. I believe this is the reason that the pattern looks very sharp while the high points (such as dolphin’s eyes and tail ) are flat.

Dating from the late sixth century, this nomos shows Phalantus naked, riding a dolphin, expressing a motif destined for popular success in the coins of Taras: the dolphin brings Phalantus safe and sound across the sea (also evidenced by the presence of a pecten in the lower field of the coin), and conveys him to Italy, according to the dictate of the Delphic oracle. We learn from the Periegesis of Greece of Pausania (II cent. A.D.) that statues of Taras, Phalantus, and Phalantus’ dolphin (cf. Paus. X 13) were among the votive offerings (anathemata) presented to Delphi by the Tarantines with a fifth of the spoils taken from the Peucetii and the Iapygians. The reverse has the same representation as the obverse, in incuse, using a well-known technique of early coinage that was deployed at many other Southern Italian cities besides Taras
Leo
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EB1031 Bull / Incuse Bull25 viewsGreek, Italy, Sybaris Nomos 550-510 BC.
Obverse: VM in exergue, bull standing left on dotted exergual line, head reverted.
Reverse: Incuse bull standing right on dotted exergual line, head reverted.
References: SNG Cop 1388; SNG ANS 828ff; Gorini pg. 10, 5-6.
Diameter: 28.5mm, Weight: 8.03g.
Ex: Miguel Munoz Collection.
2 commentsEB
Vlasto_68(2).jpg
GREEK, ITALY, CALABRIA, Taras. Circa 510-500 BC. AR Incuse Nomos37 views8,03 g; 24 mm; 11 h
Phalanthos riding dolphin right, extending left arm, holding dolphin with right hand; crowning Nike to left; shell below
Rv. Incuse of obverse, but ethnic in relief.
HNItaly 826; Vlasto 68. The first issue of Tarentine coinage. Very rare. Lightly toned and in fine archaic style, extremely fine. According to Vlasto, it is the last type of the Tarentine incuse series.

I got this great piece from an auction last fall and it was the most important acquisition for me.
This Taras incuse stater is more compact and thicker than Kaulonia and Sybaris incuse staters. It was double (or triple) striked and the details were hard to detect. We can found slight trace on the Taras’s head and his left hand. I believe this is the reason that the pattern looks very sharp while the high points (such as dolphin’s eyes and tail ) are flat.
Leo
Sybaris-both-web~0.jpg
GREEK, Italy, Sybaris Nomos 540-520 BC Gillette Collection488 viewsNomos circa 540-520, AR 7.82 g. 31mm Bull standing l. on dotted bar, head reverted; in exergue, VM. The whole within dotted border. Rev. Same type incuse on broken bar, without legend. The whole within radiate border. Historia Numorum Italy 1729. Cf. SNG Copenhagen 1388.

Gorini 1 and enlarged p. 107 (this coin).

An extremely rare variety. Nicely toned and good very fine
Ex Triton sale 1, 1998, 121. Barry Fierstein Collection. From the Gillette collection 1924

NAC 39 Lot 5 May 17th, 2007


Sybaris (Greek: Σύβαρις; Italian: Sibari) was a celebrated city of Magna Graecia on the western shore Gulf of Taranto, a short distance from the sea, between the rivers Crathis (Crati) and Sybaris (Coscile). The last of these, from which it derived its name, at the present day falls into the Crati about 5 km from its mouth, but in ancient times undoubtedly pursued an independent course to the sea. Sybaris was apparently the earliest of all the Greek colonies in this part of Italy, being founded, according to the statement of Scymnus Chius, as early as 720 BCE. The site is located within the limits of the present-day comune of Cassano allo Ionio, in the province of Cosenza (Calabria), Italy.

Sybaris was Italy’s most prosperous Achaean colony. Sybaris was destroyed in 510 BC by Croton which exiled the colonists. The Athenians and Sybarite descendants established themselves in a joint colony, New Sybaris, in 443. Eventually, making themselves unpopular, the Sybarites were expelled and the remaining colonists refounded their city near the spring of Thuria.

The word Sybaritic has become a byword meaning extreme luxury and a seeking for pleasure and comfort
4 comments4to2CentBCphilia
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GREEK, Lucania, Sybaris, AR Stater circa 550-510 BC 29mm 8.13g 12 h73 viewsBull standing left looking back,on exergual line composed of pellets between two lines VM retrograde in exergue,border of lines and pellets similar to exergue line. Rev similar to Obverse but the type is incuse and reversed the legend is omitted,and the incuse border is composed of square segents.
Some numismatist believe that Pablo Picasos was influenced by this coin in his art work,and that Pythagoras the Greek mathematician was responsible for this relief-incuse design.Sybaris was the richest and most important of the Greek colonies in Italy until its destruction by Kroton in 510 BC.
1 commentsGrant H
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Italy, Cosenza, Sibari (Thurium), Street204 viewsLucania, Thourioi.
Today Sibari (Cosenza), Italy
Taras
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Italy, Lucania, Thurium56 viewsAR Stater, 7.79g. 22mm. c.410-400 B.C.

Engraver, Phrygillos (?). Head of Athena to right wearing crested helmet decorated with Skylla; "phi" in field to right. Rv. Bull pawing ground with head down to right; fish in exergue. SNG Oxford 871. HN 1782; a few small marks and some small metal breaks in front of face. Toned and of fine style

Ex: Numismatica Ars Classica, Zurich, Auction O, 2004, lot 1157.

Located on a fertile plain on the Gulf of Taranto near the site of Sybaris, Thurium was founded by Achaeans late in the 8th Century B.C. At the peak of its success, Sybaris had amassed a population nearly equal to that of Athens, had a six-mile defensive wall, and according to Strabo had as many as 25 cities and four native peoples under its authority. However, the thriving settlement was destroyed by Croton in 510 B.C. After two attempts to establish a new foundation on the ruined site that had been thwarted by Croton, a fresh attempt was made in the period 446 to 444/3 B.C. This remarkable undertaking was originally conceived by descendants of the Sybarites, but when the Crotonites opposed that enterprise as well, help was sought from Athens. Pericles came to their aid by sending colonists whom he had gathered from throughout Greece to participate in what he envisioned as a Panhellenic experiment in colonization. With financial and military support from Athens, the colonists set up their city, drawing on the talents of Protagoras of Abdera for its civil laws, Lampon of Athens for its sacred laws and Hippodamus of Miletus for its city-plan. Even the historian Herodotus is counted among the talented participants. As Thurium began to flourish its colonists from Greece soon ejected their co-founding Sybarites (who established another city on the river Traeis) and eventually distanced themselves even from their benefactor Athens. The city continued to prosper even after it came under Roman control following the defeat of Tarentum in 272. During the Second Punic War, Thurium was still a regional power and it held out as a Roman ally until the spring of 212, when resisting the Carthaginians became impossible. It was the last Greek city to fall to Hannibal, yet it also was the last city outside of Bruttium to remain in his camp. This was not appreciated by the Romans who consequently added its land to their ager publicus and, in 194 or 193, by which time the site was largely abandoned, founded in its place the Latin colony of Copia. Thurian coinage is substantial, and is renowned for the fine artistry of its dies. The head of Athena as an obverse type clearly is inspired by the coinage of Athens. The standing bull on the city’s early coins likely was derived from the old badge of Sybaris, yet the charging version of that animal may refer to the local spring Thuria, from which the new foundation took its name. On this example the bowl of Athena’s helmet is vividly decorated with Scylla, whose ribbed serpent-tail and dog foreparts are particularly well-engraved. Athena’s face retains the severe dignity of even the earliest issues of Thurium, making it a fine example of Attic-inspired art. The bull, as on all Thurian issues of this era, is fully animated with its tail lashing as it charges forth to engage some unseen foe.
Ex: A.D.M. Collection
2 commentsLeo
Sybaris_port_facilities.jpg
Italy, Port facilities of Sybaris131 viewsExcavated remains of the port facilities of Sybaris. These are located on the Casa Bianca site in the easternmost section of the Sybaris archaeological park. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Sybaris_port_facilities.jpgJoe Sermarini
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Italy, Sybaris, Planning assumptions of Sybaris (Lucania)181 viewsPlanning assumptions of Sybaris by Archaeological Museum of Sibaritide (Sibari, Cs, Italy)Taras
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Lucania - Sybaris6 viewsAR hemiobol
c.530-510 BC
O - Bull left, head turned back
R - MV
mauseus
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Lucania - Sybaris21 viewsAR obol
c.530-510 BC
O - Bull left, head turned back
R - Incuse bull right, head turned back
1 commentsmauseus
Sybaris.jpg
Lucania Sybaris drachm98 viewsBull standing to left on dotted ground line, head turned back to right; all within border of dots VM in exergue

Bull standing to right, on dotted ground line; around, border of dots; all incuse.

LUCANIA, Sybaris

Circa 550-510 BC.

2.04g

HN III 1736. SNG ANS 847 ff.

Chipped. Old cabinet toning.

Ex-Londinium
4 commentsJay GT4
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Lucania Thourioi Stater 385 - 360 BC.83 viewsObv ; Helmeted head of Athena, helmet decorated with Skylla holding trident.
Rev ; QOURIWN, bull butting; fish in exergue.
G/aVF , 20.8 mm, 7.44 gr.

EX THE COLIN E. PITCHFORK COLLECTION.
EX CNG.

Thourioi, was a city of Magna Graecia on the Gulf of Tarentum, near the site of the older Sybaris. It owed its origin to an attempt made in 452 BC by Sybarite exiles and their descendants to re-people their old home. The new settlement was crushed by Croton, but the Athenians lent aid to the fugitives and in 443 BC Pericles sent out to Thourioi a mixed body of colonists from various parts of Greece, among whom were Herodotus and the orator Lysias.
The pretensions of the Sybarite colonists led to dissensions and ultimately to their expulsion; peace was made with Croton, and also, after a period of war, with Tarentum, and Thourioi rose rapidly in power and drew settlers from all parts of Greece, especially from Peloponnesus, so that the tie to Athens was not always acknowledged. The oracle of Delphi determined that the city had no founder but Apollo, and in the Athenian Expedition in Sicily Thourioi was at first neutral, though it finally helped the Athenians.

Thourioi had a democratic constitution and good laws, and, though we hear little of its history till in 390 BC it received a severe defeat from the rising power of the Lucanians. Many beautiful coins testify to the wealth and splendor of its days of prosperity.

In the 4th century BC it continued to decline, and at length called in the help of the Romans against the Lucanians, and then in 282 BC against Tarentum. Thenceforward its position was dependent, and in the Second Punic War, after several vicissitudes, it was depopulated and plundered by Hannibal in 204 BC.

From The Sam Mansourati Collection.
3 commentsSam
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Lucania, Metapontion (Circa 540-510 BC).38 viewsAR Nomos

28 mm, 7.82 g

Obv: META.
Barley ear.
Rev: Incuse barley ear.

Noe Class VI; HN Italy 1479.

Metaponion's neighbor, Sybaris, given its preeminence in the region, was most likely the originator of the incuse fabric. It seems to have been a spontaneous invention and to have been evolved without any evolutionary development. Of interest is that these coins have seldom or never been found in hoards unearthed outside Italy. This carries the suggestion that the consideration of preventing the export of money and, consequently, of restricting its circulation to South Italy must have been prominent in the minds of those responsible for originating the form. These incuse pieces are also rarely found overstruck and are significantly more difficult to counterfeit.
4 commentsNathan P
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Lucania, Metapontom stater86 viewsRaised barley corn

Incuse barley corn

Metapontom, 440-510 BC

7.72g

Tight flan series NOE 243-256; HN Italy 1485

Ex-DM collection, Ex-HJB, Ex-Calgary coin

An Achaean colony of great antiquity, Metapontion was destroyed and refounded early in the 6th century by colonists from Sybaris under the leadership of Leukippos. The city occupied an exceptionally fertile plain on the Gulf of Tarentum, which explains the use of the barley ear as its civic badge. Metapontion, along with Sybaris and Kroton produced the earliest coinage in Magna Graecia. The coins of these cities share three features: weight standard, broad and thin flans, and incuse reverses. These features were then adopted by neighboring mints at Kaulonia and elsewhere in southern Italy. While the reasoning behind the choice of these shared features is not clear, the common weight and style facilitated circulation between the cities of south Italy. The mixed contents of the earliest hoards from the region support this idea of free circulation of currency. It is interesting that these common features, indigenous to south Italy, also tended to keep the coins in south Italy. They are rarely found elsewhere in Italy, not even in Sicily. After approximately 510 B.C., the date of the destruction of Sybaris by Kroton, the fabric of the coins throughout south Italy became smaller and thicker, though still with incuse reverses. In the years between 480 and 430 B.C., sooner in Tarentum and later in Metapontion, the incuse issues were replaced by a two sided coinage.
6 commentsJay GT4
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Lucania, Sybaris (Circa 550-510 BC)36 viewsAR Stater

29 mm, 8.14 g

Obverse: VM in exergue; bull standing left, head reverted.

Reverse : Incuse bull standing right, head reverted.

HN Italy 1729; SNG ANS 828-844

An Achaean colony dating from about 720 BC, Sybaris rapidly grew to be the wealthiest city in the area. The luxury enjoyed by its population was proverbial, hence the modern words sybarite and sybaritic. The bull may symbolize the local river god Krathis. The archaic coinage of Sybaris was brought to an abrupt end in 510 BC when the city was destroyed by the rival state of Kroton. The waters of the Krathis were diverted to flow over the site of the sacked city, thus obliterating all trace of its former splendor.
2 commentsNathan P
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LUCANIA, Sybaris. Circa 550-510 BC. AR Nomos44 views28.5mm, 7.97 g, 12h
Bull standing left, head right; ¨µ in exergue / Incuse bull standing right, head left. S&S Class B, pl. 48, 4–8; Gorini 2; HN Italy 1729; SNG ANS 828-44; SNG Lloyd 449–50; Basel 168–9; Dewing 406–7. VF, lightly toned. Good metal.
1 commentsLeo
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LUCANIA, Thourioi152 viewsGR7

Thurii was one of the latest of all the Greek colonies in this part of Italy, not having been founded until nearly 70 years after the fall of Sybaris. The site of that city had remained desolate for a period of 58 years after its destruction by the Crotoniats; when at length, in 452 BC, a number of the Sybarite exiles and their descendants made an attempt to establish themselves again on the spot, under the guidance of some leaders of Thessalian origin; and the new colony rose so rapidly to prosperity that it excited the jealousy of the Crotoniats, who, in consequence, expelled the new settlers a little more than 5 years after the establishment of the colony. The fugitive Sybarites first appealed for support to Sparta, but without success: their application to the Athenians was more successful, and that people determined to send out a fresh colony, at the same time that they reinstated the settlers who had been lately expelled from thence. A body of Athenian colonists was accordingly sent out by Pericles, under the command of Lampon and Xenocritus; but the number of Athenian citizens was small, the greater part of those who took part in the colony being collected from various parts of Greece. Among them were two celebrated names – Herodotus the historian, and the orator Lysias, both of whom appear to have formed part of the original colony. The laws of the new colony were established by the sophist Protagoras at the request of Pericles

LUCANIA, Thourioi. Circa 400-350 BC. AR Triobol (11mm, 1.18 gm). Helmeted head of Athena right, helmeted decorated with Skylla / Bull butting left; fish in exergue. SNG ANS 1138-47; HN Italy 1806. VF. Ex-CNG BB0VFA
3 commentsecoli
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LUCANIA. Sybaris. AR Stater53 viewsCirca 550-510 B.C. (28mm, 8.43 g, 12h). Obverse: bull standing left, head reverted; VM in exergue. Reverse: incuse bull standing right, head reverted. S & S Class B, pl. XLVIII, 4-8 Gorini 2; HN Italy 1729. VF, toned.

Ex. Volteia Collection

This coin was minted before the destruction of Sybaris by its neighboring city state Kroton in 510 B.C. We do not know the exact nature why Kroton destroyed this prosperous city. Ancient sources provided us several accounts of Sybaris being a place of hedonism and excess to the point that the very name Sybaris became a byword for opulent luxury, and its destruction was a result of some divine punishment (Diodorus Siculus, Strabo, Aelianus, Athenaeus). Modern revisionist view of the possible demise of Sybaris might be the result of its vast natural wealth and successful trade with its neighbors, which gave Kroton the economic reason to subjugate it. The Sybarites established a new city called Thourioi (Thurii/Thurium) with the help of Athenian settlers. However, the Sybarites were again expelled by the Athenians in 445 B.C. and founded another city for the last time called Sybaris on the Traeis.
Sybaris might be the first to mint coins with an incuse reverse and this practice spread to other Greek city states like Kroton, Metapontion, and Poseidonia. The similar weight and technique in producing these incuse-type coins facilitated trade between the cities mentioned. The bull might represent the river god Crathis or Sybaris, or both: each deity could represent either the obverse or reverse of the coin. The ethnic VM (or YM) in exergue are the first two Greek letters of Sybaris spelled retrogradely. A curious placement of the letter sigma sideways made it appear as letter M on most coins of Sybaris.
5 commentsJason T
Metapontum.JPG
Metapontum, Lucania122 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 commentsEnodia
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POSEIDONIA - Lucania - Italia14 viewsAR Nomos (Estátera) 20.6 mm 7.37 gr

Anv: "POΣEI"(posiblemente retrógrada en campo derecho, en este caso ilegible), Poseidón avanzando a derecha, Clámide (Chlamys) flotando sobre sus hombros, portando un tridente horizontal en mano derecha y con su brazo izquierdo extendido.
Rev: "POΣEI" (Retrógrada con Σ acostada como M), Toro avanzando a izquierda con "Σ" (Recostada que parece M = Número de control de cuño ??).

Poseidonia fue fundada a finales del siglo séptimo A.C. por colonos griegos de Sybaris. En el quinto siglo A.C., Poseidonia fue conquistada por los lucanos. La evidencia arqueológica muestra sucesivas culturas griegas y oscas, que incluso prosperaron juntas. Después los Poseidonianos se unieron con Pirro de Epiro contra Roma, siendo vencidos por el Cónsul Publio Valerio Levino.
Poseidonia fue refundada como ciudad romana con el nuevo nombre de Paestum en el 273 A.C.

Acuñada: 420 - 410 A.C.
Ceca: Poseidonia - Lucania - Italia

Referencias: SNG Cop #1278 ss - SNG ANS #651 ss - SNG Lockett #442 - cf. HN Italy #1127 - MI AMG.#2534 (R2) - Delepierre #353
mdelvalle
Poseidonia.jpg
Poseidonia, Lucania35 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 commentsEnodia
syb.jpg
Sybaris Stater61 viewsBruttium, Sybaris 540-530 BC Statère 7,77g
A:/ VM en haut; Taureau à gauche, tournant la tête à droite avec un diadème perlé ; ligne d’exergue perlée ; grènetis perlé.
R:/ R/ même type à dr. incus.
Spagnoli group A1, HNItaly 1729. SNG ANS 825
1 commentsBrennos
sybaris2.JPG
Sybaris Stater64 viewsBruttium, Sybaris 525-514 BC Statère 7,82g
A:/ VM en Bas; Taureau à gauche, tournant la tête à droite ; ligne d’exergue perlée ; grènetis perlé.
R:/ même type à dr. incus.
Spagnoli group B, HNItaly 1729. SNG ANS 828-46
ex NAC 59 (2011) lot 1551
1 commentsBrennos
Sybaris.jpg
Sybaris, Lucania67 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 commentsEnodia
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Taras 480-470 BC, Nomos56 views7.68g.

Fischer-Bossert-81, Vlasto-74. Obv: Boy on dolphin right; sea shell below. Greek legend above. Rx: Wheel pattern. Ex Gemini XII, 11 January 2015, lot 11. VF

"From the evidence of findings we know that the coins bearing a wheel, and with the designs in relief on both sides of the coins were issued for some years during the destruction of Sybaris in 510 B.C.
The wheel was an emblem of the sun-god and may perhaps show the influence of the Pythagoreans; it appears also on the coins of Tanagra and of Chalcis, and later also on coins of Phlius, circle 431 B.C.
The coins issued in this period show the rapid advance made by the Tarentines in Commerce and Art during the time 520 to 470 B.C"
1 commentsLeo
Thourioi_Sixth.JPG
Thurii, Lucania 27 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.
Enodia
Thourioi.JPG
Thurii, Lucania58 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 commentsEnodia
00030v00.jpg
Thurium, Lucania (Circa 400-350 BC)46 viewsAR Nomos

20 mm, 7.45g

Obverse: Head of Athena with Attic helmet, on the helmet boiler Scylla

Reverse: Bull, in section fish.

SNG ANS 1034 (av., Stgl.), HN Italy 1787.

Located on a fertile plain on the Gulf of Taranto near the site of Sybaris, Thurium was founded by Achaeans late in the 8th Century B.C. At its peak, Sybaris had amassed a population nearly equal to that of Athens, had a six-mile defensive wall, and according to Strabo had as many as 25 cities and four native peoples under its authority. However, the thriving settlement was destroyed by Croton in 510 B.C.

After two attempts to establish a new foundation on the ruined site that had been thwarted by Croton, a fresh attempt was made in the period 446 to 444/3 B.C. This remarkable undertaking was originally conceived by descendants of the Sybarites, but when the Crotonites opposed that enterprise as well, help was sought from Athens. Pericles came to their aid by sending colonists whom he had gathered from throughout Greece to participate in what he envisioned as a Panhellenic experiment in colonization. With financial and military support from Athens, the colonists set up their city, drawing on the talents of Protagoras of Abdera for its civil laws, Lampon of Athens for its sacred laws and Hippodamus of Miletus for its city-plan. Even the historian Herodotus is counted among the talented participants.

As Thurium began to flourish its colonists from Greece soon ejected their co-founding Sybarites (who established another city on the river Traeis) and eventually distanced themselves even from their benefactor Athens. The city continued to prosper even after it came under Roman control following the defeat of Tarentum in 272. During the Second Punic War, Thurium was still a regional power and it held out as a Roman ally until the spring of 212, when resisting the Carthaginians became impossible. It was the last Greek city to fall to Hannibal, yet it also was the last city outside of Bruttium to remain in his camp. This was not appreciated by the Romans who consequently added its land to their ager publicus and, in 194 or 193, by which time the site was largely abandoned, founded in its place the Latin colony of Copia.

Thurian coinage is substantial, and is renowned for the fine artistry of its dies. The head of Athena as an obverse type clearly is inspired by the coinage of Athens. The standing bull on the city’s early coins likely was derived from the old badge of Sybaris, yet the charging version of that animal may refer to the local spring Thuria, from which the new foundation took its name. On this example the bowl of Athena’s helmet is decorated with Scylla, whose serpent-tail is visible. The bull, as on all Thurian issues of this era, is fully animated with its tail lashing as it charges forth to engage some unseen foe.
1 commentsNathan P
 
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