Help ID (and genuiness)

Discussion in 'Ancient Coins' started by KIWITI, Oct 18, 2019.


    KIWITI Well-Known Member

    This little coin was a gift, it was in in an evelope which simply said "Mylassus".

    I googled it but couldn´t find a match or even a simple reference, nothing similar to this coin. It looks OK to me, but am more like a "roman guy", not so familiarized with greeks.

    <img src="" alt="IMG-7188" border="0">
    <img src="" alt="IMG-7189" border="0">

    Weight: 1.02g diameter: 7.2 mm

    Any help will be greatly appreciated!
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  3. Ryro

    Ryro You'll never be lovelier than you are now... Supporter

    I cannot see the images.
    PS, LOVE the Avatar. The boxer is one of my favorite statues.
    KIWITI likes this.
  4. Bing

    Bing Illegitimi non carborundum Supporter

    Looks like a Boeotian shield, but I cannot find anything with the reverse. Sorry.
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  5. TIF

    TIF Always learning. Supporter

    It does look believable but I also failed to find a match. I looked through ACsearch and a few other places, focusing on Boeotia because of the obverse design (presumably a Boeotian shield). There are some obols of that size and some have incuse reverses but I don't see any with a single sigma (also tried M, but it looks like a Σ).

    If no one else here can dig up a match, perhaps the next step is to start digging through old catalogs and books.

    Edited: here are your images cropped, joined, and displayed as full images rather than thumbnails or links (you'll get more lookers that way):

    Last edited: Oct 18, 2019
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  6. Ed Snible

    Ed Snible Well-Known Member

    Last edited: Oct 18, 2019
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  7. TIF

    TIF Always learning. Supporter

    Wow! If so, yours is a much nicer example!!
    Orfew and Nicholas Molinari like this.
  8. Nicholas Molinari

    Nicholas Molinari Well-Known Member

    I love Alan’s walker’s description: "This piece has the distinction of quite probably being the poorest quality coin ever to appear in a [CNG] auction (including coins in multiple lots)".
    TIF, red_spork and Ed Snible like this.
  9. Ed Snible

    Ed Snible Well-Known Member

    I attended the Triton auction where the BCD coin I linked to above was sold. I inspected the lots, including the Mycalessus coin I linked to. That's why I was able to find it so easily. Usually the Triton coins are out-of-this-world pretty and expensive. Some of the BCD coins were like that. Others were extreme rarities in poor condition. These hammered at prices suitable to ordinary collectors. I suspect Mr. BCD struck a deal to get all of his Boeotian coins put into Triton instead of trickling out in e-auction group lots.

    The Triton auction where BCD's Boeotian collection sold was the first auction I attended in person and actually bid by holding up the card. I had a card with a number and held it up to purchased a Boeotian coin from the BCD collection. Mine is from Thebes, and not as rare as what I suspect OP has posted.

    BOIOTIA, Thebes. 525-480 BC. AR Hemiobol (0.53 g). 6mm.
    Obv: Half Boiotian shield
    Rev: Square incuse with a recessed large triangle (divided by a line), a small triangle, and a square (divided by a line).
    Ref: BMC p. 33, 13.
    Classical Numismatic Group, Triton IX, January 2006, lot 326 (BCD collection)
    Ex Dr. J.S. Wilkinson Collection (Malter 49, 15 November 1992), lot 422.

    The picture here is the auction picture. I have this coin in a safety deposit box but I'll take it out and shoot it from an angle sometime so I can show the impressive relief used to render the shield.

    The Boeotians realized how difficult it was to tell a half-obol from an obol by weight and came up with a visual solution to the problem!

    I hope OP has found a real Mycalessus. The Triton catalog says BCD knew of only one other specimen. Does anyone have the cited Hirsh catalog? OP may own the Hirsch coin, which would be a beautiful ending. Or OP may have found a third, unknown example, of this extremely rare coin.
  10. KIWITI

    KIWITI Well-Known Member

    Wow! Thanks everyone, this is really interesting. Yes, my coin seems to be an obol, as it would fit perfectly with Ed´s hemiobol. That said, it doesn´t have such an skew incuse punch, it is just the M. I´ll try to take better pictures to show (those i did, look like they were taken in 2005! :hungover: ).
    This coin belonged to a dear friend which inherited his collection from his dad and him, from his uncle, which would place the formation of the collection to the ending of the 19th century.
    Theodosius, Nicholas Molinari and TIF like this.
  11. Ed Snible

    Ed Snible Well-Known Member

    There is no need for a skew punch. The cities of Boeotia had obols with the first letter of their town or a symbol. wheel amphora H Q Archaic Q M

    These coins are so rare that the only place I have seen them was at the 2006 auction of the world's best collection of the type.

    The problem here is that Mr. BCD only knew of one other specimen, "Lucien de Hirsch 1237". I believe that refers to the 1959 catalog of the coins donated to the royal library in Belgium. Which would make your specimen the third. Not a lot got past Mr. BCD, who had the world's largest privately own collection of books on Greek numismatics and a full-time librarian for them.
  12. THCoins

    THCoins Well-Known Member

  13. TIF

    TIF Always learning. Supporter

  14. pprp

    pprp Well-Known Member

    The OP's coin has a very shallow and square incuse with a mirror like surface and is very different from the De Gereuth sample. It certainly raises suspicion to me. BTW have a look at the rest of the collection plates it's a guaranteed climax
    Nicholas Molinari and KIWITI like this.
  15. KIWITI

    KIWITI Well-Known Member

  16. KIWITI

    KIWITI Well-Known Member

    Thanks, it is mine too.

    I got to see it in person and it really looks alive. It´s captivating!
    Ryro likes this.
  17. Pishpash

    Pishpash Supporter! Supporter

    Anybody thought to ask BCD? Tagging @ab initio just in case.
    Theodosius likes this.
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