Featured A Pair from Palaeopolis in Pisidia

Discussion in 'Ancient Coins' started by Roman Collector, Jun 15, 2021.

  1. Roman Collector

    Roman Collector Supporter! Supporter

    This city in western Pisidia is not well-known. Hill, citing an article in The American Journal of Archaeology, states its ruins are thought to be those at Ak Euren in the open plains of the Lysis valley in Turkey, between Olbasa and Lysinia,[1] and is so placed on David Sear's map of the coin issuing cities of the region.[2]

    Coin issuing cities of southern Asia Minor, David Sear.

    Researching the city has proven difficult. A Google search for "Palaeopolis Pisidia" yields nothing outside of the numismatic literature. Similarly, a Google search for "Ak Euren Turkey" yields only 19th and early 20th century literature, and I can only assume that its name was changed -- as were so many place names in Turkey -- after the Turkish War of Independence (1919-1923). I would love to know more about the ruins and whether any archaeological work has been done there in recent years.

    The city issued coins from the early Antoninine period (Antoninus Pius, Marcus Aurelius as Caesar, Faustina II under Pius, and some semi-autonomous issues) through the late Severan period (Elagabalus, Mamaea, and Severus Alexander). This husband-wife pair (or cousin-cousin pair or step-brother and step-sister pair) are thus among the first coins issued by the city. RPC dates the coins to "soon after 147" and I would agree. Marcus Aurelius bears the title Caesar and is clean-shaven, while Faustina's coiffure is that seen on her imperial issues dating from AD 147-149.

    Marcus Aurelius Palaeopolis Apollo.jpg
    Marcus Aurelius, Caesar AD 139-161.
    Roman Provincial Æ 17.5 mm, 2.88 g, 7 h.
    Pisidia, Palaeopolis, shortly after AD 147.
    Obv: ΑVΡΗΛΙΟϹ ΚΑΙϹΑΡ, bare-headed, draped and cuirassed bust, right.
    Rev: ΠΑΛΑΙΟΠΟΛЄΙΤΩΝ, nude Apollo standing facing, head left, quiver at shoulder, holding laurel-branch, resting arm on lyre.
    Refs: RPC IV.3 7691 (temporary); SNG BnF 1654; von Aulock Pisidiens 1086-9.

    Faustina II, AD 147-175.
    Roman provincial Æ 19.5 mm, 5.14 g, 6 h.
    Pisidia, Palaeopolis, shortly after AD 147.
    Obv: ΦΑVϹΤЄΙΝΑ ϹЄΒΑϹΤ; draped bust of Faustina II, right, with early coiffure.
    Reverse: ΠΑΛΑΙΟΠΟΛЄΙΤΩΝ; Mên standing, left, wearing Phrygian cap, holding pine-cone and long scepter; behind his shoulders, crescent.
    Refs: RPC IV.3, 7692; von Aulock Pisid. I, 1090–2; SNG France 1655; Imhoof-Blumer 386, no. 1.

    The coin designs are rather pedestrian, with most types depicting a god or goddess seated or standing, holding their various attributes. Gods represented include Mên and Apollo as illustrated above, but also Zeus, Dionysus, Demeter and Tyche. Semi-autonomous issues struck during the reign of Antoninus Pius feature a helmeted bust of Athena wearing an Aegis on their obverses. One interesting type depicts three athletes, one of whom reaches into an amphora, with an agonistic urn above them. This was the only type thought worthy of mention by George Hill, who notes it was discussed by Henri de Longpérier in an 1869 article.[3]

    An interesting linguistic phenomenon is illustrated by the coins of the city. During the reign of Septimius Severus, the spelling of the city changes from ΠΑΛΑIΟΠΟΛЄΙΤΩΝ to ΠΑΛΑEΟΠΟΛЄΙΤΩΝ, perhaps reflecting the Latin-speaking convention of rendering the Greek diphthong AI as Æ.

    Feel free to post anything you feel is relevant!



    1. Hill, George Francis. Catalogue of the Greek Coins of Lycia, Pamphylia, and Pisidia (BMC 19). Gilbert and Rivington, 1897, p. xcvi.

    2. Sear, David R. Greek Imperial Coins and Their Values: the Local Coinages of the Roman Empire. Seaby, 1982, p. 628.

    3. Hill, op cit., p. xcvii.
    Last edited: Jun 17, 2021
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  3. Andres2

    Andres2 Well-Known Member

    Never heard of Paleopolis , so thanks for the write up, @Roman Collector Only coin I own from Pisida:

    Romulus Remus (5).JPG
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  4. ancient coin hunter

    ancient coin hunter μεγάλος βασιλιάς

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  5. Alegandron

    Alegandron "ΤΩΙ ΚΡΑΤΙΣΤΩΙ..." ΜΕΓΑΣ ΑΛΕΞΑΝΔΡΟΣ, June 323 BCE Supporter

    Thanks for the writeup, @Roman Collector . Not familiar with Palaeopolis., nor have a coin. Interesting...
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  6. Bing

    Bing Illegitimi non carborundum Supporter

    PHILIP I 5.jpg
    OBVERSE: IMP M IVL PHILIPPVS AVG, radiate, draped, cuirassed bust right
    REVERSE: ANTIO-C H-ICOL to left and right of vexilium surmounted by eagle, between two legionary eagles, SR in exergue
    Struck at Pisidia, Antiochia, 244-249 AD
    6.91g, 24mm
    SNG France 1259/1262
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  7. Roman Collector

    Roman Collector Supporter! Supporter

    That's a SERIOUS lathe-dimple!!! :woot:
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  8. Ryro

    Ryro The last of the Diadochi Supporter

    Both cool and interesting coins from a place I've never heard of!
    Though, I've a few coins from Pisidia, this one is by far my favorite:
    Pisidia. Kremna AD 270-275.
    Bronze Æ 32mm., 14,18g. Laureate, draped and cuirassed bust right / Facing statue of Artemis Ephesia, with supports. nearly very fine Cf. Von Aulock, Pisidien II 1621-3.
    Ex Savoca London
  9. ambr0zie

    ambr0zie Dacian Taraboste

    Never heard of this city.
    One of mine from Pisidia, and interesting coin where the engraver wasn't exactly sure about the legend
  10. Bing

    Bing Illegitimi non carborundum Supporter

    Yes it is, and I have what I believe to be a matched twin (at least the obverse appears to be) PHILIP I 7.JPG :
  11. Spaniard

    Spaniard Well-Known Member

    @Roman Collector.....Another interesting article...I really do enjoy your threads.
    Alas I've nothing in my collection to post but have certainly learnt a great deal Thanks.
    Some really cool coins shown and must admit I'm becoming much more interested in the Provincials!
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  12. ancientone

    ancientone Well-Known Member

    That is a nice pair especially the Men @Roman Collector! I have 9 different cities from Pisidia but not this one.
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  13. Al Kowsky

    Al Kowsky Supporter! Supporter

    R.C. Interesting coins :). I'm sure the city was located somewhere in Mysia Province ;). Mysia.svg.png

    Gordian III, Antiochia-Pisidia (2).jpg
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  14. Alegandron

    Alegandron "ΤΩΙ ΚΡΑΤΙΣΤΩΙ..." ΜΕΓΑΣ ΑΛΕΞΑΝΔΡΟΣ, June 323 BCE Supporter

    LOL, no, it is a lobotomy...

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