I'll start with a HUGE thanks to @David@PCC! First, if he hadn't shared his Tryphon coin in the https://www.cointalk.com/threads/fo...m-if-you-got-‘em.300099/page-126#post-3615356 thread, I still wouldn't have known about this type nor the slightly obscure Seleucid ruler that it was minted for. And second, for hooking me up with this saweet coin! Tryphon, Diodotus Mint: Antioch 141 BC Obvs: Head of Tryphon right diademed. Revs: BAΣΙΛEΩΣ TPYФΩNOΣ AYTOKPATOPOΣ, Spiked Macedonian helmet. Grain to left AE 18mm, 4.7g Order # G 139 Ref: SC 2034.2b Ex-@David@PCC Coin talk Admittedly it is a bit of a digression from my recent Macedonian shield coin study...or is it? The reason that this coin sang so beautifully to my "eyears" was the wicked beauty of the Macedonian helmet on the reverse, of which the shield coins are littered with as well. It was this usurpers way of saying, "Hey, I'm Macedonian. And I am one bad dude. If you don't believe me, just check out the helmet." I had actually been told that Tryphon minted shield coins as well, but in my searches no such luck. Anywho, on with the story! To tell the story without going all the way back to Alexander the Great will take some short cutting. So here goes! Cue the 1980's montage music: After the Diadochi (Alexander's successors) split up the empire, Seleucus I Nicator "the conqueror" (reign 305-281 BCE) took the largest slice of the pie when he snatched up Syria and most of the Eastern land of the empire, ie. Babylon, Persia, Media, India etc. Fast forward through lots of brother/cousin/nephew killing and sister/cousin/aunt marrying ad nauseam, and we find ourselves in the middle of the 140s-130s BCE. Demetruis II (reign 145–138 BC) and Cleopatra Thea (reign 150 BC–126 BCE) were the King and Queen of Syria. However, due to the heavy handed ruling style and outrageous taxes there was no love loss between them and the peoples they ruled. Demetrius II AE19. Diademed bust right / BAΣIΛEΩΣ ΔHMHTPIOY, galley right, Phoenician inscription below Headquartered in Chalcis and taking advantage of the people's discontent with the current regime a former general turned usurper named Diodotus (reign 142–138 BCE) had a surprise up his sleeve. Diodotus just so happened to have Cleopatra Thea's son from her previous marriage to Alexander Balas , Antiochus VI Dionysius, and swiftly elevated the boy to king. This was a power play that would have long lasting repercussions. This gave Diodotus the ability to take the large cities of Apamea and Antioch, in 144 BCE, with ease as Demetrius II and Cleo Thea fled. SYRIA, Seleukis and Pieria. Apameia. Dated year Delta 0T left (year 304). = 49-48 BC. Litra. Head of Dionysos right, wearing ivy wreath, “ME” monogram in left field. / Thyrsos; date to inner left. RPC I 4347. 21 mm, 7,96 g good very fine. scarce Quickly other major cities like Cilicia and Palestine came under Diodotus and Antiochus VI. Judea was on board with reports that Babylon would follow suit soon...then, in 142 BCE, tragedy struck! The young new King Antiochus VI died, reportedly during a surgery that had gone wrong, though there were certainly accusations leveled that the power hungry Diodotus was the "surgeon" in charge. It was at this critical juncture that Diodotus gave himself the nickname "Tryphon" and pronounced himself King. The usual translation for Tryphon is "soft or delicate". Though the assumption here is that he was going with the less used translation of "magnificent", or so one would hope. Despite the set back the new king was in the driver's seat with much of the empire now backing him. There were now only 2 key Phoenician cities still under Demetrius II's control, Ptolemais and Tyre. Sit back and enjoy, as the stage is set for one of the ALL TIME GREAT bad luck epic ancient history fails: After Tryphon's army had routed some of Demetrius II's soldiers and were chasing them along the coast, a MASSIVE TIDAL WAVE swept Tryphon's army and all of his dreams of being a unified Seleucid King into the ocean. Though, Tryphon wasn't swept out to sea, he may as well have been. After this how could anyone not believe that the usurper had done something to anger the gods. He had the people, the power and momentum and now he was just all wet. Demetruis II, being viewed as in a weakened position, had to quickly head out to face the Parthians. While away his brother Antiochos VII Euegretes moved in and took over as king. Even going so far as to marry his brothers wife, Cleopatra Thea (yeah, that's her third husband/king. don't judge)! Antiochos VII Euergetes (Sidetes). 138-129 BC. Æ (17mm, 6.35 g, 3h). Contemporary imitation. Uncertain mint, imitating Antioch. Lion's head right / Vertical club downward. SC 2073 (this coin referenced and illustrated); HGC 9, 1097. very fine In 138 BCE Antiochos VII moved quickly and defeated an on the ropes Tryphon. And while on the run back to his home base, Apamea, Tryphon was either killed or committed suicide. And so ends one of the strangest rags to riches usurper stories you are likely to hear. Here is a second Tryphon coin I couldn't help myself but pick up in a recent auction. Again, due to the awesomeness of that reverse helmet! Tryphon, Diodotus Antioch, 141 BCE, AE 18mm, 4.7g Obvs: Head of Tryphon right diademed. Revs: BAΣΙΛEΩΣ TPYФΩNOΣ AYTOKPATOPOΣ, Spiked Macedonian helmet. Grain to left Order # G 139 SC 2034.2b Ex:Savoca Please post any coins of the players in this story, Seleucids, cool helmets, epic ancient fails or anything else you feel!