Art from Panticapaeum

Discussion in 'Ancient Coins' started by Valentinian, Apr 9, 2021.

  1. Valentinian

    Valentinian Supporter! Supporter

    Panticapaeum (also spelled with a "K" for "C" or "paion" for "paeum), in the north Black Sea region, stuck some very artistic coins in the 4th century BC. Some argue the head is a satyr and others argue it is the head of Pan, referencing the name of the city. I think it is Pan.

    The 20-22 mm Pan/griffin type is common. Here is recent purchase, a larger type, 26 mm, also not rare, but not so common.


    c. 340-325 BC.
    14.76 grams. Bow over arrow right over ΠANTI
    MacDonald 59. Anokhin 110.
    Look at the expression, the beard and the grape-vine leaves! It is only AE, not a precious metal, but the artwork is wonderful nevertheless.

    There is a website, the catalog-archive "Coins of the Bosporus", about coins of the region:

    Show us some coins from the north Black Sea region!
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2021
  2. Avatar

    Guest User Guest

    to hide this ad.
  3. Bing

    Bing Illegitimi non carborundum Supporter

    Pantikapaion 2.jpg
    OBVERSE: Head of Pan left
    REVERSE: P-A-N, head & neck of bull three-quarters left. Struck at Pantikapaion 400-300BC
    4.0g, 18mm
    SNG BMC Black Sea 890
    Pantikapaion 1.jpg
    OBVERSE: Head of Pan left
    REVERSE: Roaring lion's head left; fish below
    Struck at Pantikapaion 400-300BC
    5.3g, 21mm
    SNG BMC Black Sea 883
    Kavax, TIF, +VGO.DVCKS and 16 others like this.
  4. Shea19

    Shea19 Supporter! Supporter

    Beautiful coin @Valentinian! Incredible detail on the obverse, especially the grape vine leaves in the hair. Great pickup!

    Cimmerian Bosporos, Pantikapaion. Circa 325-310 BC. (AE, 20 mm, 5.58g), Wreathed head of satyr to left. / Rev. ΠΑΝ Bow and arrow.
    From the Vineyard Collection
    TIF, +VGO.DVCKS, Curtisimo and 14 others like this.
  5. Ryro

    Ryro The last of the Diadochi Supporter

    Thar be a true stunner :jawdrop:
    You look at the coin thoroughly once over, but still have to ogle it over once again:singing:
    I'm a bit of a Pan fan myself (can't seem to find images of my BIG boy (bearded) Pan but here's my resent reshoot of the dirty young chap (LOVE how the reverse spells his name in totally recognizable letters to the modern English reading eye PAN:
    20190326_104727_E2F40068-0B5E-4E86-8BDF-145B2E7E9A30-406-0000007D5174E148.png 20190327_140631_290BC852-966C-4568-89F3-D5C17962C775-469-0000007CD5002D0B.png
  6. AncientJoe

    AncientJoe Supporter! Supporter

    The coinage of Pantikapaion is indeed incredibly artistic regardless of the denomination. I tried and failed for years to acquire a stater of the common type but then managed to cross off the much rarer "wild hair" earlier variety earlier this year and couldn't be happier.


    CIMMERIAN BOSPOROS, Pantikapaion. Circa 380-370 BC. AV Stater (19mm, 9.08 g, 1h). Head of Pan left / Griffin standing left, head facing, holding spear in its mouth, left forepaw raised, on grain ear left; Π-A-N around. Anokhin 1001; MacDonald 31; HGC 7, 17; SNG BM Black Sea 855; Gulbenkian 580–1; Jameson 2144 (this coin); Prinkipo 166

    Ex Black Sea Collection (Nomos 13, 7 October 2016), lot 149; Guermantes Collection (Leu 86, 5 May 2003), lot 307; Robert Jameson Collection (sold privately Dr. J. Hirsch); Grand Duke Alexander Mikailovitch Collection (sold privately by Spink).
    Tejas, eparch, TIF and 27 others like this.
  7. Terence Cheesman

    Terence Cheesman Supporter! Supporter

    Pantikapaion Ae 23 340-325 BC Obv. Head of bearded satyr left. Rv. bow and arrow. MacDonald 59 11.53 grms 23 mm Photo by W. Hansen panticapaeum2.jpeg
    Tejas, Kavax, TIF and 18 others like this.
  8. PeteB

    PeteB Well-Known Member

    A different style:
    CIMMERIAN BOSPOROS, Pantikapaion. Time of Pharnakes. Circa 63-47 BC. Æ Obol (27mm, 12.43 gm, 12h). Obv: Wreathed head of young Dionysos right. Rev: Eagle standing left, head right, on thunderbolt; monogram to left, star to right. MacDonald 187; SNG BM Black Sea 945 var. (ethnic in two lines).
    Kavax, TIF, +VGO.DVCKS and 15 others like this.
  9. Ryro

    Ryro The last of the Diadochi Supporter

    Here's the bearded bad boy:
  10. DonnaML

    DonnaML Supporter! Supporter

    A very beautiful coin, @Valentinian. As are all the others posted here. I never get tired of seeing @AncientJoe's gold stater!

    Mine is the common type. I knew I wanted one from the first time I saw someone post an example here.

    My description includes a link to the relevant page of the website @Valentinian cites; it's in Russian, but Chrome translated it for me.

    Cimmerian Bosporos, Pantikapaion, AE 19 mm., ca. 320-310 BCE, minted under Perisad I, 345-310 BC. Obv. Bearded head of satyr, right / Rev. Forepart of griffin left; below, sturgeon left; Π-A-N [PAN] around. Anokhin (2011) 1023 [Anokhin, V.A., Античные Монеты Северного Причерноморья (Ancient Coins of the Northern Black Sea Coast) (Kiev. 2011) (see]; Seaby 1700 [Sear, David, Greek Coins and their Values, Vol. 1: Europe (Seaby 1979) at p. 169]; BMC 3 Thrace 20 [R.S. Poole, ed. A Catalog of the Greek Coins in the British Museum, Vol. 3, The Tauric Chersonese, Sarmatia, Dacia, Moesia, Thrace, etc. (London, 1877) at p. 7]; SNG BM Black Sea 869-870 [Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Great Britain, Volume IX, British Museum, Part 1: The Black Sea (London, 1993); available online at; see SNGuk_0901_0869 and SNGuk_0901_0870]. 20 mm., 7.87 g., 12 h.

    Pantikapaion (Pan-Griffin) redacted, jpg version.jpg
    Tejas, Kavax, TIF and 19 others like this.
  11. Roman Collector

    Roman Collector Supporter! Supporter

    That is a handsome example, @Valentinian. I have only two coins from this region -- from Roman times, of course!

    Tiberius Julius Mithradates, King of the Bosporus AD 41-45, and his mother, Gepaepyris, Wife of Aspurgus.
    Bosporus Kingdom, probably prior to AD 41.
    Æ 12 nummia, 7.92 gm, 23.5 mm.
    Obv: ΒΑCΙΛΕΩC ΜΙΘΡΑΔΑΤΟΥ, laureate head of Mithradates, right.
    Rev: ΒΑCΙΛΛΙCCΗC ΓΗΠΑΠΥΡΕΩC, laureate, draped bust of Queen Gepaepyris, right.
    Refs: RPC I, 1911; MacDonald 312; Anokhin Bosphorus 331; Sear GIC 5433; BMC 13.51,5.
    Notes: Acquired from Beast Coins, 2 July, 2003.

    And this one featuring Claudius and Agrippina II:

    Claudius, AD 41-54 and Agrippina II, AD 50-59.
    Roman provincial Æ 12 Nummia, 9.30 gm, 25.0 mm.
    Bosporos, under King Kotys I, AD 50-54.
    Obv: ΤΙ ΚΛΑΥΔΙΟΥ ΚΑΙCΑΡΟC, laureate head of Claudius, right.
    Rev: ΙΟΥΛΙΑΝ ΑΓΡΙΠΠΙΝΑΝ CΕΒΑCΤΗΝ, head of Agrippina II, left, in loop ponytail; BAK before.
    Refs: SGI 5438; RPC 1925; BMC 13.52,7; Anokhin Bosporus 348; SNG Copenhagen 31.
    TIF, paschka, PeteB and 13 others like this.
  12. Cucumbor

    Cucumbor Dombes collector Supporter

    Both @Valentinian's and @DonnaML's examples are ones I would like to add to my collection. @AncientJoe's is just amazing, I can't stop looking at it...

    Here are the few specimens I can contribute with :



    TIF, Spaniard, paschka and 10 others like this.
  13. DonnaML

    DonnaML Supporter! Supporter

    Another coin from Pantikapaion, to pair with my bearded satyr/griffin posted above. (It's the very next catalog number in all four of the references I cite, although I don't see nice examples quite as often.) I bought it mostly for the lion & sturgeon on the reverse, although the obverse is interesting as well.

    Cimmerian Bosporos, Pantikapaion, AE 20 mm., ca. 310-303 BCE, minted under Eumelos (Spartocid ruler of Bosporan Kingdom, son of Perisad I). Obv. Beardless head of young satyr (Pan) left, wearing ivy wreath / Rev. Lion head left; sturgeon below left; Π-A-N [PAN] around. Seaby 1701 [Sear, David, Greek Coins and their Values, Vol. 1: Europe (Seaby 1979) at p. 169]; BMC 3 Thrace 21-22 [R.S. Poole, ed. A Catalog of the Greek Coins in the British Museum, Vol. 3, The Tauric Chersonese, Sarmatia, Dacia, Moesia, Thrace, etc. (London, 1877) at p. 8]; HGC 7, 114 [Hoover, Oliver D., Handbook of Coins of Northern and Central Anatolia, Pontos, Paphlagonia, Bithynia, Phrygia, Galatia, Lykaonia, and Kappadokia (with Kolchis and the Kimmerian Bosporos), 5th to 1st Centuries BC, The Handbook of Greek Coinage Series, Volume 7 (Lancaster, PA, 2012); MacDonald 70 [MacDonald, David, An Introduction to the History and Coinage of the Kingdom of the Bosporus. Classical Numismatic Studies 5 (Lancaster, 2005)]. 20 mm., 6.43 g. Purchased from Kirk Davis, Catalogue # 77, Spring 2021, Lot 6.

    COMBINED NEW 1 Pantik Lion.jpg
    Last edited: May 3, 2021
    Valentinian, Kavax, TIF and 9 others like this.
  14. DonnaML

    DonnaML Supporter! Supporter

    I found this online -- the entry and illustration from BMC 3 Thrace, published all the way back in 1877. Not a bad drawing! The BMC series is all available online, I believe, and is still quite a useful resource, even after well over a century. (The measurements, as always, are in inches rather than mm., with no weights given.)

    BMC 3 Thrace 20-21, p. 8 (Pantikiapaion, Young Pan-Lion head).jpg
    TIF, PeteB and Spaniard like this.
  15. Clavdivs

    Clavdivs Supporter! Supporter

    AE, 20mm, 7.6gm
    Obv: Bearded head of Pan/Satyr facing right with ass's ear
    Rev: Π-A-N, forepart of griffin crouching left, right front paw raised, sturgeon swimming left below.
    Ryro, Kavax, Bing and 4 others like this.
  16. eparch

    eparch Well-Known Member

    I entirely agree - here is mine


    and an extraordinary 3D lion's head, difficult to photograph


    CIMMERIAN BOSPOROS. Pantikapaion. Circa 450-438/7 BC

    Diobol (Silver, 12 mm, 1.79 g).
    Facing head of a lion. Rev. Quadripartite incuse square with windmill/swastika pattern, star in two opposite quarters.

    Anokhin 971. MacDonald 11/1 corr. ('triobol'). HGC I 37v (CF HGC I 34)
    Ryro, Valentinian, PeteB and 3 others like this.
  17. gsimonel

    gsimonel Supporter! Supporter

    Did you access them through Google books? Can you provide a link? I've tried searching their collection through the BMC website but can't figure out how to make their search engine work predictably. Probably lack of gray matter on my part. A link to their original books would be a tremendous help.
  18. Ed Snible

    Ed Snible Well-Known Member

    I have tried to keep a list of the BMC volumes available online. I haven't updated this recently, perhaps more are available now.
    Ryro and DonnaML like this.
  19. DonnaML

    DonnaML Supporter! Supporter

    The links should also all be on Numiswiki.
  20. Ed Snible

    Ed Snible Well-Known Member

  21. DonnaML

    DonnaML Supporter! Supporter

    In addition to @Ed Snible's site, here is the list of volumes at Numiswiki: Greek.

    Unfortunately, the pdf links don't accompany this list. So you have to go to the Numiswiki index on the left to look up the individual volume you want, for example "BMC Italy." That will bring you to the link for that volume, namely Italy. In turn, you'll find the link there to the pdf of the entire original volume, including the plates: A somewhat cumbersome process, but it doesn't take that long!
Draft saved Draft deleted

Share This Page