Impulse buy from Roma

Discussion in 'Ancient Coins' started by ycon, May 28, 2020.

  1. ycon

    ycon Renaissance Man

    Browsing the Roma Auction in the middle of the night last night, looking for lots I might be interested in to share shipping with my main target (which, spoiler: I lost) I found something immediately appealing to me: a coin of Cleopatra Selene (the daughter of Cleopatra) without her husband Juba. One of my collection themes is powerful women of the ancient/early modern world. I had vaguely considered adding a Cleopatra Selene in the past, but I never knew there were coins issued just in her name.

    In addition the coin has a very interesting provenance, it comes from the Banasa/El Ksar Hoard of 1907 (IGCH 2307). According to Roma: "The Banasa Hoard, deposited in circa AD 20-24 was found in 1907 near modern day Souk-el Arbaa, 120 km northeast of Rabat, Morocco, in 1907. The hoard was previously said to be from Alkazar (El Ksar El Kebir), 70 km south of Tangier and hence is occasionally referred to as the El Ksar Hoard. The group contained approximately 4000 silver coins and one bronze. A substantial number of the coins now reside in public collections, principally in London, Paris, Berlin, Athens, New York and Algiers." I've never owned a coin with a (known/disclosed) hoard provenance before!

    The coin is apparently very rare (no other examples on coin archives according to Roma)--nor could I find any other examples online at all. Does anyone have the reference books Mazard or MAA, that the listing cites? I would be very grateful if someone could look it up for me.

    The coin itself is a bit of a wreck: crystallized, encrusted, "chipped" (more like broken in half), but I love it.

    Kingdom of Mauretania, Cleopatra Selene AR Denarius. Caesarea, circa AD 11-AD 23. BAΣIΛI [KΛ]Є[OΠATPA], diademed and draped bust left / Bull standing right, with crescent between horns. Mazard 393; MAA 109; SNG Copenhagen -. 2.35g, 19mm, 6h. Very Rare.

    I have an equally ravaged, shall we say, fouree denarius of her parents, and I think the two coins will make quite the set.

    Cleopatra and Mark Antony. Double Portrait Plated Denarius.
    Autumn 34 BC Alexandria mint. Obv: CLE[OPATRAE REGINAE REGVM FILIORVM REGVM] legend with diademed and draped bust of Cleopatra VII right, stem of prow before. Rev: [ANTONI ARME]NIA DE[VICTA] legend with bare head of Mark Antony right; Armenian tiara behind. 2.48 grams. Fine; some areas of plating missing. Rare issue. RRC 543/1; CRI 345; BMC East 179; RSC 1; Sear 1515.

    Finally in reading more about Cleopatra Selene I found this eulogy to her written by Crinagoras of Mytilene:

    The moon herself grew dark, rising at sunset,
    Covering her suffering in the night,
    Because she saw her beautiful namesake, Selene,
    Breathless, descending to Hades,
    With her she had had the beauty of her light in common,
    And mingled her own darkness with her death.
    Post your new Roma wins, Cleopatra Selene's, impulse buys or anything else relevant.
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  3. Magnus Maximus

    Magnus Maximus Dulce et Decorum est....

    Huh, that’s pretty neat. The fact that the Providence is over 113 years old is also cool.
    ycon likes this.
  4. cwart

    cwart Senior Member

    Very cool new purchase. I think you're right this coin and the fouree do make for an interesting set.

    As for me, I have a new purchase to post as well. It's only connection to the posted coin is that it is also a new purchase. I was going to create a new thread for it but thought why not try and keep this one alive... :)

    Constantine Follis
    323-324 CE
    CONSTANTINVS AVG, laureate head right
    SARMATIA DEVICTA, Victory, holding trophy and palm branch, walking right stepping on bound captive. C in left field. Mintmark dot PLG crescent

    TuckHard, octavius, Ryro and 6 others like this.
  5. Alegandron

    Alegandron "ΤΩΙ ΚΡΑΤΙΣΤΩΙ..." ΜΕΓΑΣ ΑΛΕΞΑΝΔΡΟΣ, June 323 BCE Supporter

    Nice pick-ups.

    This kingdom is just to the left of Mauretania:

    NUMIDIA (East of Mauretania)

    Numidia - Micipsi Left - 148-118 BCE Galloping Horse - thnner face.JPG
    Numidia - Micipsi Left - 148-118 BCE Galloping Horse - thnner face

    Numidia - Massinissa Left 203-148 BCE Leaping Horse - thicker face
  6. Marsyas Mike

    Marsyas Mike Well-Known Member

    Nice coins. I think this is the OP's husband, Juba. I bought this back in 1990, so it is one of my first ancients.

    Mauretania - Juba II den 1990 (0).jpg
    Mauretania Denarius
    Juba II
    (25 B.C.-23 A.D.)
    Caesarea (Iol) Mint

    REX IVBA, diademed head right / Filleted cornucopia with transverse sceptre behind; crescent in upper right.
    SNG Copenhagen 579; MAA 95; Mazard 241; SGI 5974.1.
    (2.80 grams / 16 mm )
    TuckHard, Broucheion, Bing and 6 others like this.
  7. zumbly

    zumbly Ha'ina 'ia mai ana ka puana Supporter

    Nice catch! I briefly considered bidding on that one. A Cleopatra Selene is pretty high on my want list. There’s a decent book that covers the history of Juba II and Cleopatra Selene by Duane Roller you might be interested in.

  8. ycon

    ycon Renaissance Man

    I'll check that out!
  9. Severus Alexander

    Severus Alexander Blame my mother. Supporter

    I love the ravaged pairing, and the bull on your new one is great!

    Here are my Roma wins today. I went for, um, "aggressively pre-owned" coins too! :D

    Etruria, Populonia AR Unit. 4th century BC. Male head right, I before / Blank. Cf. EC I, 16; HN Italy 122; Sambon 79. 0.63g, 11mm.
    -- I think this is the earlier weight standard for Populonia (~0.9g without the chip?) and so the coin could potentially be 5th century. @Alegandron: can you tell me anything more about it, buddy?

    I didn't have a Constantine camp gate w/ open doors.

    Lead imitation of Aelia Verina (wife of Leo I) AV Solidus. After AD 462/466. AEL VERINA AVG, pearl-diademed and draped bust right / VICTORIA AVGGG I, Victory standing left, holding long jewelled cross; CONOB in exergue. Cf. RIC 606; Roma e30, 628 = Gorny & Mosch 251, 5141 (same dies). 10.61g, 21mm, 6h.
    Very Fine. Extremely Rare; only one other example known.

    Why don't we see more imitations of gold coins in Pb?

    Andronicus II Palaeologus and Michael IX AR Basilikon. Constantinople, AD 1295-1320. Sear 2402. (At least half of it is nice! I didn't have a single basilikon, and it was cheap.)
  10. ycon

    ycon Renaissance Man

    I noticed that bunch of bargain Etruria coins too, and was definitely tempted!
    Severus Alexander likes this.
  11. Rich Beale

    Rich Beale Well-Known Member

    I’m very pleased to see Cleopatra has gone to a good home - after all she’s been through she certainly deserves a little TLC!
    Alegandron, zumbly and ycon like this.
  12. Alegandron

    Alegandron "ΤΩΙ ΚΡΑΤΙΣΤΩΙ..." ΜΕΓΑΣ ΑΛΕΞΑΝΔΡΟΣ, June 323 BCE Supporter

    What a great find! Nice! This size - Unit/As? are tough to get, and they are so small, I imagine they are hard to pull out of the ground. Since they have not translated the Etrurian language, we don't know what this unit is called. However, pure guess on MY part, the Etrurians strongly influenced early Rome and had an Empire spanning Central Italia, Sardinia, Corsica, and parts of Sicily much earlier. Most of Central Italia and Rome called them an As. It may be fair to say that the Etrurians probably NAMED them an As, and, typically, the Romans COPIED them.

    I just read an article the other day illustrating that my small collection of Etrurians were probably minted earlier than what has been published. I will have to do some more searching.

    I regret that I am far away from my reference books, coins, etc. for another 2 months. I will tag this and try to get back to you! Been a bit frustrating.

    Here is my Etrurian As, but of another series than yours...


    Seller's Attribution:
    Italy. Coastal Etruria, Populonia.
    AR 1 Unit, AR. g. 0.60 mm. 10.00
    after c. 211 BC.
    Obv. Male head left.
    Rev. Plain. V
    ecchi 3, 68-70. HN Italy 181.
    RRR. Extremely rare and in excellent condition for the issue.
    Lightly toned. Good VF
    Ex: Artemide Aste
    Last edited: May 29, 2020
  13. Severus Alexander

    Severus Alexander Blame my mother. Supporter

    Thanks for the feedback, Brian! Any more in future is a bonus, and I'm super patient. Think of it this way: only 2 months left in your numismatic distancing... excellent! :D

    Your as is a beaut, I remember it now. On the lower weight standard, apparently. I see Vecchi's series of papers is available here, I will have to dig into that!
    Alegandron likes this.
  14. Alegandron

    Alegandron "ΤΩΙ ΚΡΑΤΙΣΤΩΙ..." ΜΕΓΑΣ ΑΛΕΞΑΝΔΡΟΣ, June 323 BCE Supporter

    Thank you. I have been very fascinated in their Ancient History before Rome. No one knows a lot about them, yet they were quietly responsible for the founding of a great city, which went on to be a World Empire. However, these people had their own Empire, large for ITS time. We cannot decipher their language, and know so little about them. Additionally, OF the bits of language they can decipher, it is not an Indo-European language, but of Old Europe before those migrations.

    Just fun for me to hold a little of their legacy, albeit very late in THEIR history.
    Severus Alexander likes this.
  15. DonnaML

    DonnaML Supporter! Supporter

    That's the current majority view, but there is still scholarly support for the theory that the Etruscan language -- and the Etruscans themselves, as Herodotus asserted -- originated in Anatolia, specifically Lydia.
  16. Alegandron

    Alegandron "ΤΩΙ ΚΡΑΤΙΣΤΩΙ..." ΜΕΓΑΣ ΑΛΕΞΑΝΔΡΟΣ, June 323 BCE Supporter

    I have read that also. Not convinced either way. It is just that no one knows.
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