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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Greek Coins| ▸ |Geographic - All Periods| ▸ |Anatolia| ▸ |Caria| ▸ |Kos||View Options:  |  |  | 

Ancient Coins of Kos, Caria

Kos is a Greek island 40 by 8 kilometers, 4 km off the coast of Bodrum, Turkey, and ancient Caria. In mythology, the island was visited by Hercules. The island was home to a famous sanatoria of Asclepius. Other chief sources of wealth were its wines and silk manufacture. Aristotle mentions silk weaving by the women of the island. Silk garments were manufactured in large factories by women slaves. During the Greco-Persian Wars it twice expelled the Persians. In the 5th century, it joined the Delian League. After the revolt of Rhodes, it served as the chief Athenian station in the south-eastern Aegean. In 366 B.C., a democracy was instituted. After helping to weaken Athenian power, in the Social War (357-355 B.C.), it fell for a few years to the king Mausolus of Caria. In 366 B.C., the capital was transferred from Astypalaia to the newly built town of Kos. In the Hellenistic age, Kos attained the zenith of its prosperity. Its allies the Ptolemies used it as a naval outpost to oversee the Aegean. As a seat of learning, it arose as a provincial branch of the museum of Alexandria, and became a favorite resort for the education of the princes of the Ptolemaic dynasty. Among its most famous sons were the physician Hippocrates, the painter Apelles, the poets Philitas and, perhaps, Theocritus.Gymnasium of Kos


Kos, Carian Islands, c. 345 - 340 B.C.

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Herakles was traveling by sea when Hera, who hated him, sent a storm, sinking his boats. Hercules and only a few friends survived, swimming to Kos. Once ashore they asked a shepherd for food and shelter. The shepherd refused and insulted Hercules and they fought. People from nearby Antimachia joined the fight against Hercules. Hercules and his friends slipped into a house, disguised as women, and escaped. Another town welcomed Hercules and declared war on Antimachia. Hercules killed the king of Antimachia and married the newly elected king's sister, Halkiopi. Their son, Thessalos, would later be the king of Kos and Nisyros.
GS91822. Silver didrachm, cf. BMC Caria p. 195, (β) later style, 20 ff.; SNG Keckman 289; SNG Cop 621; HGC 6 1306 (R1), Fair/EF, obverse damaged, very rough, reverse off center, ethnic and magistrate name off flan, weight 5.866 g, maximum diameter 18.4 mm, die axis 0o, Kos mint, c. 345 - 340 B.C.; obverse bearded head of Herakles right, wearing Nemean lion scalp headdress; reverse veiled female (Halkiopi?) head left, [BITΩN] or [Φ</>IΛO] (magistrate) behind, [KΩION] below; rare; $120.00 SALE |PRICE| $108.00
 


Kos, Carian Islands, c. 345 - 340 B.C.

Click for a larger photo
Herakles was traveling by sea when Hera, who hated him, sent a storm, sinking his boats. Hercules and only a few friends survived, swimming to Kos. Once ashore they asked a shepherd for food and shelter. The shepherd refused and insulted Hercules and they fought. People from nearby Antimachia joined the fight against Hercules. Hercules and his friends slipped into a house, disguised as women, and escaped. Another town welcomed Hercules and declared war on Antimachia. Hercules killed the king of Antimachia and married the newly elected king's sister, Halkiopi. Their son, Thessalos, would later be the king of Kos and Nisyros.
SH53580. Silver didrachm, Pixodarus Hoard p. 234, 2a (A1/P23, this coin); SNG Keckman 287; BMC Caria p. 195, 19; SNG Cop 619; HGC 6 1305 (R1), Choice gVF, toned, nice style, struck in high relief, well centered, tight flan cutting off ethnic, weight 6.850 g, maximum diameter 20.0 mm, die axis 0o, Kos mint, c. 345 - 340 B.C.; obverse bearded head of Herakles right, wearing Nemean lion scalp headdress; reverse veiled female (Halkiopi?) head left, AΓ[H] (magistrate) behind, [KΩION] below; ex Garth R. Drewry Collection; ex Coin Galleries auction 14 April 1993, lot 317; ex Superior Galleries auction 31 May 1989, lot 6081; ex Pixodarus Hoard; rare; SOLD


Kos, Carian Islands, c. 345 - 340 B.C.

Click for a larger photo
Herakles was traveling by sea when Hera, who hated him, sent a storm, sinking his boats. Hercules and only a few friends survived, swimming to Kos. Once ashore they asked a shepherd for food and shelter. The shepherd refused and insulted Hercules and they fought. People from nearby Antimachia joined the fight against Hercules. Hercules and his friends slipped into a house, disguised as women, and escaped. Another town welcomed Hercules and declared war on Antimachia. Hercules killed the king of Antimachia and married the newly elected king's sister, Halkiopi. Their son, Thessalos, would later be the king of Kos and Nisyros.
SH75288. Silver tetradrachm, Pixodarus Hoard, Cos, p. 232, 3a (A2/P2), pl. 37; SNG Keckman 286; SNG Cop 619 var. (Herakles left); SNGvA 2751 var. (same); HGC 6 1303 (R2), VF/aVF, corrosion on reverse, weight 14.675 g, maximum diameter 22.9 mm, die axis 0o, Kos mint, 345 - 340 B.C.; obverse bearded head of Herakles left, wearing Nemean lion scalp headdress; reverse KΩION, veiled female (Halkiopi?) head left, HP (magistrate) behind, KΩION below; ex Naville Numismatics (London), auction 14 (12 Apr 2015), lot 87; ex NAC, auction 78 (26-27 May 2014), lot 1508 (from a private Australian collection and privately purchased in 1999); very rare variety of rare type; SOLD







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REFERENCES|

Ashton, R., et al. "The Pixodarus Hoard" in Coin Hoards IX. (2002), pp. 159 - 243, pls. 21 - 41.
Barron, J. "The Fifth-Century Diskoboloi of Kos" in Kraay-Mørkholm Essays.
Burnett, A., M. Amandry, et al. Roman Provincial Coinage. (1992 - ).
Babelon, J. Catalogue de la collection de Luynes: monnaies greques. (Paris, 1924-1936).
Babelon, E. Traité des Monnaies Grecques et Romaines. (Paris, 1901-1932).
Brett, A. Catalogue of Greek Coins, Boston Museum of Fine Arts. (Boston, 1955).
Forrer, L. Descriptive Catalogue of the Collection of Greek Coins formed by Sir Hermann Weber, Vol. III, Part 1. (London, 1926).
Grose, S. Catalogue of the McClean Collection of Greek Coins, Fitzwilliam Museum, Vol. II: The Greek mainland, the Aegaean islands, Crete. (Cambridge, 1926).
Head, B. A Catalog of the Greek Coins in the British Museum, Caria, Cos, Rhodes, etc. (London, 1897).
HNO - |Historia| |Numorum| |Online| |Database| - http://hno.huma-num.fr/
Hoover, O. Handbook of Coins of the Islands: Adriatic, Ionian, Thracian, Aegean, and Carpathian Seas, 6th to 1st Centuries BC. HGC 6. (Lancaster/London, 2010).
Jameson, R. Collection R. Jameson. Monnaies grecques antiques. (Paris, 1913-1932).
Klein, D. Sammlung von griechischen Kleinsilbermünzen und Bronzen. Nomismata 3. (Milano, 1999).
Kroll, J. "The Late Hellenistic Tetrobols of Cos" in MN XI (1964).
Lindgren, H. Lindgren III: Ancient Greek Bronze Coins from the Lindgren Collection. (Quarryville, 1993).
Lindgren, H. & F. Kovacs. Ancient Bronze Coins of Asia Minor and the Levant. (San Mateo, 1985).
Mildenberg, L. & S. Hurter, eds. The Dewing Collection of Greek Coins. ACNAC 6. (New York, 1985).
Requier, P. "Les premiers tétradrachmes hellénistiques de Cos" in SNR 75 (1996).
Sear, D. Greek Coins and Their Values, Volume 2, Asia and Africa. (London, 1979).
Stefanaki, V. E. KΩΣ I. (Athens, 2012).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Denmark, The Royal Collection of Coins and Medals, Danish National Museum, Vol. 5: Ionia, Caria and Lydia. (West Milford, NJ, 1982).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Deutschland, München Staatlische Münzsammlung, Part 22: Caria. (Berlin, 2006).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Deutschland, Münzsammlung Universität Tübingen, Part 5: Karien und Lydien. (Berlin, 1994).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Deutschland, Sammlung Hans Von Aulock, Vol. 2: Caria, Lydia, Phrygia, Lycia, Pamphylia. (Berlin, 1962).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Finland, The Erkki Keckman Collection in the Skopbank, Helsinki, Part 1: Karia. (Helsinki, 1994).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, France, Bibliothèque National, Collection Jean et Marie Delepierre. (Paris, 1983).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Turkey I: The Muharrem Kayhan Collection. (Istanbul, 2002).
Waggoner, N. Early Greek Coins from the Collection of Jonathan P. Rosen (ANS ACNAC 5). (New York, 1983).

Catalog current as of Sunday, August 25, 2019.
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Kos