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Area/Ruler: Roman Judaea: Herod Agrippa I
Ruled: King: 37 - 44 AD
Denomination: AE Prutah
Obverse: "ΒΑCΙΛΕωC ΑΓΡΙΠΑ" Canopy with fringe.
Reverse: Three ears of barley (parallel). In field "L-?" (year not visible)
Reference: Hendin 533, GIC 5567
Weight: 2.6 gms
Diameter: 15.5 mm


Herod Agrippa was born c. 10 BC, died AD 44 AD. His original name was Marcus Julius Agrippa. When Antipater, the son of Herod and the father of Agrippa, was executed by the mentally unstable Herod (the Great), Agrippa was sent to Rome for his education and safety. There he grew up in company with the emperor Tiberius' son Drusus, living the life of a playboy. When Drusus died in AD 23, Agrippa left Rome, and moved to Beersheba, in Palestine. In 36 AD he returned to Rome as tutor to Tiberius' grandson. Agrippa became a friend of Caligula, Tiberius' heir. Although an intemperate remark about Tiberius landed Agrippa in prison, with the accession of Caligula, his fortunes were reversed.

In 37 Caligula made him king of the territory of his uncle Philip the Tetrarch. After his uncle Antipas' banishment, Agrippa acquired his lands as well. After the death of Caligula, Agrippa supported Claudius, who in return, granted him the kingdom of Judaea.

Agrippa zealously pursued orthodox Jewish policies, and repressed the Jewish Christians. He imprisoned Peter the Apostle and executed James, son of Zebedee. In the spring of 44 AD he hosted a spectacular series of games at Caesarea to honour Claudius and it was there that he died. Because his son was only 17 years old, Judaea once more returned to a province of Rome.
Only in the Bible is Agrippa called Herod.

The Death of Herod Agrippa
"And Herod was highly displeased with them of Tyre and Sidon: but they came with one accord to him, and, having made Blastus the king's chamberlain their friend, desired peace; because their country was nourished by the king's country. And upon a set day Herod, arrayed in royal apparel, sat upon his throne, and made an oration unto them. And the people gave a shout, saying, It is the voice of a god, and not of a man. And immediately the angel of the Lord smote him, because he gave not God the glory: and he was eaten of worms, and gave up the ghost."
King James Bible Acts 12.20-23

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