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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Themes & Provenance| ▸ |Numismatics| ▸ |Graffiti||View Options:  |  |  | 

Graffiti on Ancient Coins

Ancient people would sometimes scratch their initials or other marks on their coins.


Alabanda, Caria, c. 162 - 161 B.C., Civic Coinage in the Types and Name of Alexander the Great

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Alabanda was on the river Marsyas, about twenty miles south of its confluence with the Maeander. It allied with Rome in the war against Philip V of Macedon, c. 197 B.C. Antiochus III took it soon after and renamed it Antiocheia until his defeat in 190 B.C. at the battle of Magnesia. Price dated this series of Alexandrine tetradrachms beginning in 173 B.C. and ending in 167 B.C., when Alabanda was defeated after invading Rhodian territory. Cohen begins the era in 167 B.C., after Caria and Lycia were declared free by the Roman Senate.
SH91501. Silver tetradrachm, Price 2466, Müller Alexander 1148, SNG Cop 757, Cohen DCA 311, Choice VF, centered on a very broad flan, toned, light graffiti (MENA?) in obverse right field, weight 16.484 g, maximum diameter 33.1 mm, die axis 0o, Alabanda (Doganyurt, Aydin, Turkey) mint, c. 162 - 161 B.C.; obverse head of Herakles right, wearing Nemean Lion skin, scalp over head, forepaws tied at neck; reverse Zeus Aëtophoros seated left, nude to waist, himation around hips and legs, right leg drawn back, eagle in extended right hand, long scepter vertical behind in left hand, Pegasos flying left in lower left field, AΛEΞAN∆POY downward behind, (year 6) under throne; from the Maxwell Hunt Collection; $500.00 (€440.00)
 


Seleukid Kingdom, Seleukos I Nikator, 312 - 281 B.C., Babylonia, In the Name of Alexander the Great

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Seleukos (Seleucus) founded the Seleukid Empire and the Seleukid dynasty which ruled Syria until Pompey made it a Roman province in 63 B.C. Seleukos was never one of Alexander the Great's principal generals but he commanded the royal bodyguard during the Indian campaign. In the division of the empire after Alexander's death Seleukos did not receive a satrapy. Instead, he served under the regent Perdikkas until the latter's murder in 321 or 320. Seleukos was then appointed satrap of Babylonia. Five years later Antigonus Monophthalmus (the One-eyed) forced him to flee, but he returned with support from Ptolemy. He later added Persia and Media to his territory and defeated both Antigonus and Lysimachus. He was succeeded by his son Antiochus I.
GS91995. Silver tetradrachm, Houghton-Lorber I 82.2d, Price 3756, SNG Saroglos 649, Müller Alexander 741, HGC 9 10f, SNG Cop -, SNG Alpha Bank -, SNG München -, VF, superb style in sculptural high-relief, light marks, graffiti on reverse upper left, tight flan, obverse off center, weight 17.110 g, maximum diameter 26.4 mm, die axis 90o, Mesopotamia, Babylon (Hillah, Iraq) mint, 311 - 300 B.C.; obverse head of Herakles right, wearing Nemean Lion skin, scalp over head, forepaws tied at neck; reverse Zeus Aëtophoros enthroned left, nude to the waist, himation around hips and legs, right foot drawn back, eagle in extended right hand, long scepter vertical behind in left hand, right leg drawn back, MI over crescent horns upward in left field, MYHP monogram within wreath under throne, AΛEΞAN∆POY downward behind, BAΣIΛEΩΣ in exergue; ex FORVM (2009); $500.00 (€440.00)
 


Macedonian Kingdom, Philip III Arrhidaeus and Alexander IV, 323 - 317 B.C.

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There are two primary reverse styles for Alexander the Great tetradrachms: an archaic "lifetime" style with Zeus' legs uncrossed, and a more refined Hellenistic style with Zeus' right leg drawn back. The transition between the two styles occurred around the time of Alexander's death. This type, struck in year 26 of King Azemilkos, was minted with both reverse styles. Our specimen with "crossed legs" was likely struck in 322 or 321 B.C., shortly after Alexander's death during the joint reign of Alexander's mentally disabled half-brother, Philip III, and Alexander's infant son with Roxana, Alexander IV under the regent Perdiccas.
GS91529. Silver tetradrachm, Price 3265, Newell Dated Ake 24b (obv. die XIX), SNG München 729, cf. Cohen DCA 736 (archaic style), HGC 10 3, Müller Alexander -, SNG Cop -, VF, high relief, obverse off center, graffiti on rev., punch on rev., uneven toning, bumps, scratches, porosity, weight 17.006 g, maximum diameter 26.5 mm, die axis 0o, Phoenicia, Tyre (Lebanon) mint, c. 322 - 321 B.C.; obverse head of Herakles right, wearing Nemean Lion skin, scalp over head, forepaws tied at neck; reverse AΛEΞAN∆POY downward on right, Zeus seated left, throne without back, bare to the waist, himation around hips and legs, eagle in extended right hand, long scepter vertical behind in left hand, right leg drawn back, feet on footstool, Phoenician on left: (Z= of King Azemilkos) over lll lll= ([year] 26); from the Maxwell Hunt Collection; $250.00 (€220.00)
 







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Catalog current as of Thursday, December 12, 2019.
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Graffiti