Coins from Lot of Greek AEs - #1

Discussion in 'Ancient Coins' started by gsimonel, Oct 31, 2020.

  1. gsimonel

    gsimonel Well-Known Member

    I just won a lot of 32 Greek AEs, loose, all without any ID. I am in the process of IDing them, and I have to admit that I'm getting addicted. None of the coins are in stellar condition, so I'm having to do a lot of guessing about inscriptions and what is being depicted. It's very satisfying when I can finally say "That's it!" about a coin. I feel a bit like Sherlock Holmes.

    After 3 days, I'm about 1/4 of the way through, and I already have a couple of favorites that I'd like to share with the group along with a small mystery coin.

    Here's the first: a Celtic imitation of a bronze coin of Lysimachus. I love the style of Athena. To me it looks very modern, Madison Avenue-ish, like a logo that you might find on a vacuum cleaner or bag of potato chips:
    Greek AE19
    Lower Danube region, ca. 3rd century B.C.
    Intimating Kingdom of Thrace, Lysimachus, c.f. SNG Cop. 1153.
    Obv: Head of Athena in Corinthian-style helmet, facing right.
    Rev: BAΣIΛΩE (above) / ΛVΣIMAX[OV] (below) - Lion leaping right; spearhead below.
    19.5 mm
    4.5 g

    Since Celtic coins are still a mystery to me, I'd be delighted if anyone could provide any additional information about this coin, post additional examples of this or other coins of the Danubian Celts, or perhaps the official version that this coin imitates. Or whatever else strikes your fancy.
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2020
  2. Avatar

    Guest User Guest

    to hide this ad.
  3. Marsyas Mike

    Marsyas Mike Well-Known Member

    I do like working with unattributed lots - it's more fun figuring them out - educational too.

    I can't seem to get your photo to open. The link went to a CT error.

    Below is a countermarked example that seems to fit your description. The "leaping lion" on mine looks like a gopher.

    When I was working this one up, I was under the impression it was from Lysimachos the place, not Lysimachus the ruler. Any help clearing this up would be appreciated, because I am confused.

    CM - Lysimachos river god reclining Nov 2019 (0).jpg
    CM - Lysimachos river god reclining Nov 2019 (0aaadet).jpg

    Eastern Celts Æ 18
    Lysimachos (Thrace) Imitation
    Countermarked for Odessos
    (c. 297-250 B.C.)

    Helmeted head of Athena (youth?) right / Blundered legend, lion leaping right, spearhead below.
    Countermark: River god (Odessos/Theos Megas) reclining left, Δ below, 9 x 7 mm oval, obv.
    (4.04 grams / 18 mm)
    Attribution Notes:
    Online sources were confusing:
    Cf. Müller 61-2 for prototype.
    SNG Copenhagen 1153; Winterthur 1329

  4. gsimonel

    gsimonel Well-Known Member

    Does the image come up now?

    Lysimachos ruled in Thrace, near the Danubian region, so that's why I assume the ruler. I didn't know there was a city by the same name.

    Very cool countermark, BTW.
    Marsyas Mike likes this.
  5. Marsyas Mike

    Marsyas Mike Well-Known Member

    Your image came up fine - that is a lovely example! That type of patina - black/ light green is pretty much my favorite. Very dramatic on yours.

    Also, your lion does not look like a gopher, which is a plus.

    As for the Lysimachos/Lysimachus situation, hopefully somebody will weigh in and straighten this out.
  6. dougsmit

    dougsmit Member Supporter

    The legend on the coin reads OF KING LYSIMACHOS. Other than being a barbarous imitation, I do not know a reason not to accept it as it reads.
    Marsyas Mike likes this.
  7. PeteB

    PeteB Well-Known Member

    I'm not convinced it is a barbarous imitation. The letters and spelling, especially, are my old eyes.
    The only oddity I see is the nose/face profile extends up to the helmet.
    Do more searching on online references of coins sold.
  8. Marsyas Mike

    Marsyas Mike Well-Known Member

    Yeah, I definitely got confused - I looked up my files on this and it is clearly the king they are talking about. Thank you!

    By the way, there is a really good article about these issues:

    "Official" city coins and "barbarous" tribal coins Lysimachos Lion
    Edessa likes this.
  9. gsimonel

    gsimonel Well-Known Member

    The fact that the visor on the helmet extends up to the top of the crest led me to suspect it was an imitation. So I did some poking around online and 1) found out that this type was widely imitated--I didn't know this--and 2) saw many examples of official coins, none of which had a helmet like mine. This is what convinced me that my coin was an imitation.

    I suppose an official one would be more desirable, but as I said, I really like the modernist style of my imitation.
    Edessa likes this.
Draft saved Draft deleted

Share This Page