Having a whole Greek denomination set

Discussion in 'Ancient Coins' started by Pavlos, Sep 12, 2018.

  1. Pavlos

    Pavlos You pick out the big men. I'll make them brave!

    I am really thinking to have a complete denomination set of Greek coins from Tetartemorion (or hemiobol) all the way till tetradrachm (with some bronzes preferably as well) from the same city. Now I am thinking, which city? I was thinking to do Ephesos, until now I saw Tetartemorion, hemiobol, obol, diobol, drachm and tetradrachm and bronzes getting sold from Ephesos. Also Ephesos is very interesting because of the change in coin design over time (Archaic, Classical, Hellenistic and Imperial).

    The only downside is that Greek coins from Ephesos are really expensive, I see sometimes bronze coins going for around 60-70$. I mean on one side this is good because it is challenging and who knows it takes a some years to complete this whole set. On the other side I of course do not prefer to spend a 1000$ to complete the whole set. What are your opinions? Does anyone suggest another city? If yes, which city? Thank you.
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2018
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  3. Ed Snible

    Ed Snible Well-Known Member

    A denomination set with the same type on each coin is much more impressive than a simple denomination collection with different types.

    Ephesos is a great choice because the bee tetradrachm is great.
    Athens is good because of Athena and the owl.
    Babylon for “Alexander the Great” in silver.
    Corinth for the Pegasus.

    With Ephesos it will be the big coins that are expensive. It may be the opposite for Athens and Babylon.

    Other cities will allow this kind of set, but at much higher prices.
    Deacon Ray and Theodosius like this.
  4. dougsmit

    dougsmit Member Supporter

    Sets are what you define them to be but I see no way a full denomination set will come in under $1000. If you will not be using the full set, you may as well leave out the expensive ones but I find the most interesting part of the idea showing the complete range. I do not have the AR set for Athens and will never have a dekadrachm or didrachm. So far:


    hemidrachm (or triobol)


    tritartemorion (3/4 obol)

    tetartemorion (1/4 obol)
  5. Pavlos

    Pavlos You pick out the big men. I'll make them brave!

    Thank you for the replies. And Doug that is an amazing looking set!

    I decided to do Ephesos, a very interesting city and the bee is very nice, it really stands out from other cities (like the owl for Athens).

    The only thing I am really suprised of is that Ephesos still made small fractions at the end of the classical period (and even in the Hellenistic age but I will leave that out). Now I can basically make 2 denomination sets, one with the coins from 500-420 BC and one with the period of 390-325 BC. I noticed that tetartemorion and hemitetartemorion were not mint anymore after 420BC and that tetradrachm started to be mint later on in the Classic age.

    The only difference is that the late Archaic/early Classic had squares on the reverse and the one later in the Classic age a double design

    Drachm 480-415 BC
    Drachm 394-295 BC

    Civil 500-420 BC

    Diobol 390-330 BC

    I guess something I need to figure out, I also have no idea what the price difference is. They both have their beauty but I think the later version has more variety then just a bee and squares.
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  6. Ed Snible

    Ed Snible Well-Known Member

    No bronze yet, Doug?
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  7. dougsmit

    dougsmit Member Supporter

    The bronzes are later and harder to work into the denominations as I understand them. I only have a couple but do not know how they relate to the silver.
    g41340bb0454.jpg g41350bb1156.jpg

    ...and of course there are the fourrees but all mine are tetradrachms. I have only seen two fourree smaller coins that I recall. Both were offered long ago.
    g41250b00444alg.jpg g41270b00741lg.JPG g41335fd2800a.jpg
  8. Pavlos

    Pavlos You pick out the big men. I'll make them brave!

    I am thinking to buy this book for my denomination set for Ephesos:


    On the Chronological Sequence of the Coins of Ephesus by Barclay Vincent Head. It is only 13$, a very good price.

    Does anyone has experience with this book or author? Is it recommended to buy a book like this if I want to go deeper into Ephesos or is it a bit exaggerated to buy a book only for 1 city?

    Your opinions are appreciated, thank you.
  9. TIF

    TIF Always learning. Supporter

    Head (1844-1914) was head of the British Museum's Department of Coins and authored many books and papers. While it's always nice to have a physical book you might be able to find this public domain work on the internet.

    One of his most popular works is Historia Numorum, a Manual of Greek Numismatics (1911).
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  10. TIF

    TIF Always learning. Supporter

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  11. TypeCoin971793

    TypeCoin971793 Just a random nobody...

    A full set of athenian owls on display at the British Museum.

    4CCCB78F-3E4D-4207-8DF4-1F7DE505B70F.jpeg 29A57D20-3896-4B48-B172-F29BF4C1B4E5.jpeg 5228C445-446F-4C30-B45D-0B9991F373CE.jpeg C9A28A07-9F53-4686-91BA-9CFF6367CECD.jpeg 97D4E185-1FE7-492F-A979-8537F41DB2E3.jpeg AE740089-80E2-43BD-A9EE-2938AC0221CC.jpeg
    Orielensis, Ajax, Orfew and 4 others like this.
  12. Pavlos

    Pavlos You pick out the big men. I'll make them brave!

    Great, thank you very much! The online read is good quality, I don't think it is necessary for me to have the paper version then :)
  13. dougsmit

    dougsmit Member Supporter

    Did your source of these images include any caption material? What is #12?
  14. TypeCoin971793

    TypeCoin971793 Just a random nobody...

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