... but I don't yet know what! This coin was a splurge from many months ago but I hadn't yet posted it, wanting first to satisfy my remaining questions. I've failed to do so and am enlisting your help. The coin: EGYPT, Alexandria. Nero Regnal year 14 (CE 67/8) AE diobol; 27 mm, 10.9 gm Obv: NEPΩKΛAVK[AIΣΣEBΓEPA]; laureate head right Rev: L - IΔ; "vase" (Emmett), or "oinochoe" per others (others are probably correct) Ref: Dattari-Savio Pl. 1, 2 (this coin); Dattari cf 286; RPC 5322; Emmett 153.14; Poole (BM, 1892) cf 188?; Milne -; none in a few other minor references I own. Rare. ex Dattari collection (Giovanni Dattari, 1858-1923) I bought this coin for several reasons. First, I love coins of Roman Egypt, especially ones with unusual or Egypt-specific reverses. Second, I'm a sucker for an old pedigree and this is another ex Dattari coin. Third, I hadn't seen such a detailed oinochoe on a coin (they are found on several tiny denominations, generally with limited detail). Fourth, and the swing factor, because the reverse of this coin is particularly intriguing upon a more careful examination. Regarding the name of the reverse object, in calling it a vase Emmett has it wrong except in the most generic sense. That's surprising because similar devices appear on several coins throughout the period of Roman Egypt coin production, and Emmett calls them oinochoe. I think it is an oinochoe, a beaked vessel with a single handle, thin neck, and pouring spout. The etymology suggests oinochoai are used for serving wine, although I don't know if the name is a word assigned in modern times or if there are contemporary attestations to the name of the vessel. Bronze, terracotta, and glass oinochoai from https://www.metmuseum.org/ The body of the vessel is reminiscent of canopic figures such as the ones below. As on these coins, the vessel appears to be sitting on a pillowed pedestal. EGYPT, Alexandria. Hadrian year 11, CE 126/7 billon tetradrachm, 26 mm, 12.6 gm Obv: AVTKAITPAI AΔPIACEB; laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right, seen from behind Rev: L ENΔ EKATOV: Canopus of Osiris right Ref: Emmett 827.11, R3; Milne 1205 EGYPT, Alexandria. Hadrian year 18, CE 133/4 Æ drachm, 26.4 gm Obv: AYT KAIC TPAIAN (A∆PIANOC CEB), laureate and draped bust right Rev: Canopic jars facing; L I H across fields Ref: Emmett 933.18, R1 When considering bidding on this coin, the thing that really caught my eye is the top portion of the object on the reverse. It seems to be an upside-down symbol for "gold" (a pectoral necklace with drop-like pendants): and altogether, the reverse object evokes something found on another coin, the staters of pharaoh Nektanebo II: Triton XIX, Lot: 2075. Estimate $50000. Sold for $130000. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee. EGYPT, Pharonic Kingdom. Nektanebo II. 361-343 BC. AV Stater (16.5mm, 8.16 g, 10h). Horse prancing right / Heiroglyphic representation of “good gold”: pectoral necklace (nebew = “gold”) crossing horizontally over a windpipe and heart (nefer = “good”). FF-BD 1p (D1/R1 – this coin); SNG Berry 1459 (same dies); SNG Copenhagen 1 (same obv. die); ACGC 1064 (same obv. die); Hunt I 106 (same dies); Jameson 2618 (same rev. die). Good VF, toned, slightly off center on reverse. Rare. The combination of the pectoral necklace with the trachea and heart connote "perfect gold" or "fine gold". Digging through hieroglyphs shows that other symbols were combined with the pectoral necklace to give other meanings. from CoinWeek.com If the decoration on spout of my coin's pitcher is intentionally the symbol for gold, maybe the design of this vessel's neck and body represent another glyph and combine to give more meaning to the whole of the object? The slender neck resembles a trachea and the body of the vessel is somewhat heart-like, or maybe akin to a canopic jar. Or, is the vessel as a whole an upside-down representation of the hieroglyph for silver (middle picture above). Maybe the vessel on the coin was fabricated in silver in real life? Was it a special type of pitcher, used in specific ceremony? Is there meaning beyond simple artistic license? Is this a special or ceremonial pitcher and if so, do examples exist? I haven't found any but I haven't dug for it in great depth. What do you think? Are these questions interesting at all or am I just stretching to find mysteries in order to justify overpaying for the coin? After reading what I've written, it seems like much ado about nothing. I'll continue to pursue the matter anyway ... I should write to the BM or a university specializing in Egyptology and ask if they're seen any real-life oinochoai which resemble the one on this coin. Maybe it would lead to an understanding of why such an object was worthy of appearing on a coin.