Pontos (Pontus)

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Burnett, A., M. Amandry, et al. Roman Provincial Coinage. (London, 1992 - ).
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Koinon of Pontus. After the formation of Pontus Galaticus (B.C. 2 and A.D. 1), the towns of this territory probably formed a Koinon Κοινον under the headship of Amasia. When, in its turn, Pontus Polemoniacus was incorporated, it formed a new Koinon Κοινον, of which the capital was Neocaesareia. The two Koina Κοινα afterwards became one, and the coins of the Koinon Pontou Κοινον Ποντου were struck at Neocaesareia (q. v.). The following were also probably struck at Neocaesareia: — rev. ΚΟΙΝΟΝ ΠΟΝΤΟΥ, Tetra- style temple, of M. Aurelius, also of L. Verus; with dates reckoned from A.D. 64-5, the year of the annexation of Pontus Polemoniacus. (On the Koinon see Rec Gén., p. 25 f.)

Amasia or Amaseia, the birthplace of Mithradates the Great and of Strabo, was a strongly fortified town on the river Iris. Ć of reign of Mithradates Eupator (q. v.). Inscription, ΑΜΑΣΕΙΑΣ.

Imperial—Domitian to Severus Alexander. Inscription, ΑΜΑCΙΑC, usually with addition of various surnames, honorific titles, dates, etc., e. g. ΑΔΡ (Hadriana), CЄV (Severiana), ΑΝΤ (Antoniniana), ΑΛЄΞ (Alexandriana), ΜΗΤΡΟΠΟΛЄΩC ΠΟΝΤΟΥ, ΠΡΩΤΗC ΤΟΥ ΠΟΝΤΟΥ, ΝЄΩΚΟΡΩΝ, mostly abbreviated. On a coin of Sept. Severus occurs the legend ЄΡΜΗC ΚΤΙCΑC ΤΗΝ ΠΟΛΙΝ, showing that Hermes was revered as oekist. Era begins B.C. 2 (Z. f. N., 1906, p. 342). Types, A large altar, often burning, with a tree beside it; on or above altar, victim, eagle, chariot; probably altar of Zeus Stratios (Rec Gén., p. 27; Cumont, Studia Pontica, 1906, p. 177); View of Amasia (BMC Pontus, p. xvii); Aphrodite and Ares (Imh., G. M., p. 560, No. 3); Tyche; Seated Hades; Hades and Kerberos (Rec Gén., No. 69).

Amisus (Eski Samsun), next after Sinope the most flourishing Greek port on the south coast of the Euxine, was recolonized from Athens, probably in the middle of the fifth century, and its name changed to Peiraeeus.

Fourth century B.C. Persic standard.
Female head in turreted stephane. ΠΕΙΡΑ, ΠΕΙΡΑΕ, ΠΕΙΡΑΙ, ΠΕΙΡΑΙΩΝ, Owl on shield. Magistrates’ names and symbols [Rec Gén., p. 44 f.]
AR Dr. 86 grs.

After the time of Alexander, the town issued silver of similar types but without the town-name (drachms and triobols of Rhodian weight). Traces of the authority of the Pontic kings are found on these coins, as in ΒΑ (silissaes σιλισσης) ΛΑ(odikaes οδικης), also on the Ć of the same period (Rec Gén.).

Ć of reign of Mithradates Eupator. Inscribed, ΑΜΙΣΟΥ (rarely ΣΑΜΙΣΟΥ and ΣΑΜΙΣΟΗΣ, Z. f. N., ii. p. 29). In addition to the civic coinages of Mithradates, described under his name, infra, the following were struck at Amisus:—obv. Head of Artemis, rev. Quiver with strap; obv. Head of Dionysos, rev. Cista and thyrsos; obv. Cista and thyrsos, rev. Panther holding stag’s head; obv. Head of Dionysos, rev. Quiver; obv. Female head in wolf’s skin (Amazon Lykastia ?), rev. Herakles, Nike (see Imhoof-Blumer Griechische, p. 570); obv. Head of Apollo, rev. Roma and Eirene (?), circ. B.C. 84 (see G. M., p. 569).

In the first century B.C. the Proconsuls of Bithynia, C. Papirius Carbo, B.C. 61-59, and C. Caecilius Cornutus, B.C. 56 (G. M., p. 562), place their names upon Ć coins: obv. ΑΜΙΣΟΥ Head of Roma, rev. Roma. (ΡΩΜΗ) seated on shields holding Nike.

Imperial—Augustus to Saloninus (some quasi-autonomous, G. M., p. 570 f.). There are AR from Hadrian to Antoninus, wt. 144, 96, 48 grs. (cf. G. M., p. 572). Inscription, ΑΜΙCΟΥ, nearly always with ЄΛЄΥΘЄΡΑC added. Types, Athena, Asklepios, Demeter, Dionysos, Poseidon, Hermes, etc.; Capricorn; Tyche of Amisus placing rudder on head of Thalassa (Imhoof KM, i. p. 1, No. 4); River-god ΘЄΡΜΩΔΩΝ (R. N., 1900, p. 126); Temple and altar with mountains behind (Imhoof GM, p. 571). Era dates from autumn of B.C. 32, at which time Amisus was freed from its tyrant Straton by Augustus (Z. f. N., xx. p. 257; Pauly-Wissowa, s. v. 'Aera', p. 644; Rec Gén., p. 44).

Cabeira (Niksar), in the valley of the Lycus, was the chief seat of the worship of the god Męn Pharnakou. Ć of reign of Mithradates Eupator (q. v.). Inscr., ΚΑΒΗΡΩΝ. c. B.C. 65 the name was changed by Pompey to Diospolis, and Ć inscribed ΔΙΑΣ appear to have been issued with Mithradatic types: obv. Head of Zeus, rev. Eagle; obv. Head of Dionysos, rev. Cista and thyrsos (Imhoof GM, p. 574; but see infra under Dia in Bithynia). In Imperial times it bore the name Neocaesareia. Imperial (see BMC Pontus; Imhoof-Blumer Griechische; Rec Gén.) Trajan to Gallienus. Also quasi-autonomous of Domitian. Inscr., ΝЄΟΚΑΙCΑΡЄΙΑC; ΝЄΟΚΑΙC; also ΚΟΙΝΟΝ ΠΟΝΤΙΥ (see supra, Koinon of Pontus); ΜΗΤΡΟΠ; ΑΔΡ; ΔΙC ΝΕΩΚΟΡ. Games, ΑΚΤΙΑ. Era, Oct., A.D. 64. Types, Temple, within which, sometimes, statue, radiate bust, altar. Agonistic table, wreath, etc. Dioskuri standing at altar. Athena (with name of Roman official Aufidius Umber; Imhoof-Blumer KM, ii. p. 499). Group of Tyche of Neocaesareia with river-god at her feet and five female figures = the cities of the Koinon Pontou Κοινον Ποντου with their metropolis Neocaesareia (see BMC Pontus; Imhoof-Blumer Griechische, p. 578; Rec Gén., p. 86).

Cerasus (Kiresoun), on the coast west of Trapezus. Perhaps the same town as Pharnaceia (q. v.) (Rec Gén., p. 74 and p. 99). Imperial, Ć Hadrian to Severus Alexander. Inscribed, ΚЄΡΑCΟΥΝΤΙ ΩΝ. Era, Oct., A.D. 64. Types: Herakles standing; Galley; Seated Goddess with cornucopia; Pan, etc.

Chabacta, in Strabo’s time, was a dependency of Amisus. Ć of reign of Mithradates Eupator (q. v.). Inscribed, ΧΑΒΑΚΤΩΝ.

Comana (near Gumenek), on the Iris, called ‘Pontica’ to distinguish it from the Cappadocian Comana, was famed for its cultus of the goddess Mâ or Enyo, the high priest of whose temple ranked next in dignity to the king of Pontus (cf. R. N., 1886, p. 443). Under the Romans the place bore the additional name of Hierocaesareia.

Ć of reign of Mithradates Eupator (q. v.). Inscr., ΚΟΜΑΝΩΝ. Imperial and quasi-autonomous—Time of Caligula, obv. Head of Enyo, rev. ΚΟΜΑΝΩΝ Club (Z. f. N., xx. p. 261, No. 1); Nerva, rev. ΚΟΜΑΝΩΝ, Club; Sept. Severus and family, Inscr., ΙЄΡΟΚΑΙCΑ ΚΟΜ ΑΝЄ(ΩΝ), Types; Temple, within which Enyo radiate, standing, holding shield and club (Z. f. N., xx. p. 262, No. 2); also, Nike in temple. Era dates from Oct., A.D. 34 (N. C., 1902, p. 2; 1904, p. 101 f.; cf. Rec Gén., p. 78).

Gaziura (Turkhal), on the Iris, one of the residences of the kings of Pontus, but deserted in the time of Strabo (xii. 547). For the silver coins of the dynast Ariarathes I, struck there, see Kings of Cappadocia. Ć of reign of Mithradates Eupator (q. v.). Inscription, ΓΑΖΙΟΥΡΩΝ.

Haemilium (?) or Aemilium, known only from coins. Ć of first century B.C. Obv. Head of Tyche of city, rev. Fulmen; above, Crescent and star; obv. Head of Apollo, rev. Similar. Size .9. Inscribed, ΑΙΜΙΛΙΟΥ. (Z. f. N., xx. p. 271; Rec Gén., p. 26.)

Laodiceia. Modern Ladik, between Amisus and Amasia. Ć of reign of Mithradates Eupator (q. v.). Inscr., ΛΑΟΔΙΚΕΙΑΣ. Types: Aegis, rev. Nike walking; Head of Ares, rev. Sword in sheath; Head of young Dionysos, rev. Thyrsos (Z. f. N., xx. p. 263; cf. R. N., 1900, p. 228).

Neocaesareia. See Cabeira.

Nicopolis ad Lycum (near Piourkh, Purgos Πυργος). Founded by Pompey, circ. B.C. 65, in memory of his victory over Mithradates Eupator (Imhoof KM, i. 3; Rec Gén., p. 97; Cumont, Studia Pontica, 1906, p. 306). Imperial—Trajan; Hadrian. Inscr., ΝЄΙΚΟΠΟΛЄWC, and ЄΤΟVC ‘34’ and ‘42’; also ΝΙΚΟΠΟΛΙΤWΝ ΑΔΡΙΑΝ...; cf. C. I. G., 4189. Types: Zeus seated holding Nike; Nike; Wreath; Serpent on Altar; Young head, laureate. Era, Oct., A.D. 64.

Peiraeeus. See Amisus.

Pharnaceia, on the Black Sea, west of Trapezus (perhaps the same town as Cerasus; see Rec Gén., pp. 74, 99). Ć, Second or first century B.C. Inscr., ΑΡΝΑΚΕΩΝ, Bust of Męn, rev. Star (Imhoof KM, I. p. 5); Bust of Zeus, rev. Zebu. Also Ć of reign of Mithradates Eupator, Bust of Zeus, rev. ΑΡΝΑΚΕΙΑΣ, Eagle on fulmen. (According to R. N., 1900, p. xx, Imperial of Caracalla; cf. Imhoof, op. cit., ii. p. 500).

Pimolisa. See infra under Paphlagonia.

Sebasteia (Siwas), on the Halys. Imperial—L. Verus to Valerian. Inscr., CЄΒΑCΤΗΝΩ, CЄΒΑCΤΙΑC ΜΗΤΡΟΠΟΛЄΩC. Types: Roma seated; Demeter. Era begins between B.C. 2-1 and A.D. 1-2, probably B.C. 2-1. (Imhoof KM, p. 5; Rec Gén., p. 101.)

Sebastopolis-Heracleopolis (Sulu-Seraď), on the Scylax. Imperial— Trajan to Gallienus. Inscr., CЄΒΑCΤΟΠΟΛΙΤΩΝ, CЄΒΑCΤΟΠΟΛЄΩC (Trajan); later, CЄΒΑCΤΟ. ΗΡΑΚ., CЄΒΑCΤΟΠΟ. ΗΡΑΚΑЄΟΠΟ., CЄΒΑCΤΟ. ΗΡΑΚΛЄΟΠ. Types: Nearly all relate to Herakles and his labors; Statue of Herakles in temple, etc. See Imhoof GM, etc. Roman Magistrate, P. C. Ruso (N. Z., 1891, p. 71). Era dates from B.C. 3 (October). (N. C., 1902, p. 184; 1904, p. 101; Z. f. N., 1906, p. 339; cf. Rec Gén., p. 102.)

Taulara (Taourla, R. N., 1900, p. 230). Ć of reign of Mithradates Eupator (q. v.). Inscr., ΤΑΥΛΑΡΩΝ.

Trapezus (Trebizond), on the south coast of the Euxine. The rev. type of the following coins, a table, is obviously a type parlant (trapezaτραπεζα). Fourth century B.C. Persic standard.
Male head, with close beard (Hermes ?).
[Num. Chron., 1871, Pl. VI. 3, 4.]
ΤΡΑ Table, on which bunch of grapes
AR Dr. 88 grs.; Diob. 22 grs., with-out grapes.

Imperial—Trajan to Philip jun. Inscr., ΤΡΑΠЄΖΟΥΝΤΙΩΝ. Era 64 A.D. Types: Hermes, Dionysos, Sarapis, Tyche, etc.; especially Mithras, who is often represented on horseback: see Imh., G. M., p. 582 f.; Z. f. N., xx. 266; and Rec. Gén., p. 107, for the Mithraeum of Trapezus.

Zela (Zilleh), one of the chief seats of the cultus of the goddess Anaďtis, the high priest of whose temple was the ruler of Zela and its territory.

Imperial—A coin of Trajan with ‘Zeus Epikarpios’ is perhaps false or wrongly attributed (Rec Gén., p. 116). Sept. Severus and family. Views of temple (of Anaďtis) (BMC Pontus; Z. f. N., xii. 308); Male figure seated holding ears of corn (N. C., v. 185); Ears of corn (Z. f. N., xx. 266); Two towers and an arcade (Rec Gén., No. 11). Inscr., ΖΗΛΙΤΩΝ ΤΟΥ ΠΟΝΤΟΥ (abbrev.). Era, 64 A.D.