My first Macedonian tetradrachm- struck under Antigonos I

Discussion in 'Ancient Coins' started by Shea19, Dec 5, 2020.

  1. Shea19

    Shea19 Supporter! Supporter

    I recently added my first Macedonian tetradrachm, which is a type I've wanted for a very long time. Now that I have one, I'm kicking myself for not getting one sooner. This was a little bit above my usual price range, but I'm so happy I ended up pulling the trigger and buying it...I just really love this coin.

    The coin was struck around 10 years after the death of Alexander the Great, under Antigonos "The One-Eyed" Monophthalmos, one of the famous generals who served under Alexander, and who was a major player in the Diadochi Wars after Alexander's death.

    Here is the seller's photo, and then my photo:


    Antigonos I Monophthalmos, As Strategos of Asia, AR Tetradrachm (24.5mm, 17.10 g). In the name and types of Alexander III of Macedon. Susa mint. Struck under Aspesias, satrap of Susiana, circa 316-311 BC. Head of Herakles right, wearing lion skin /Rev. BAΣIΛEΩΣ ΑΛΕΞΑΝΔΡΟΥ Zeus Aëtophoros seated left; in left field, wreath; below throne, PO above strut, ΠP monogram below. Price 3855.
    CNG E-Auction 475

    Though I obviously knew the diameter and the weight of the coin before buying it, I was very excited when I got it in hand...the seller's photo didn't do it justice. The coin is thick, and it was struck in the highest relief of any coin I own.

    I'm not the best photographer, but I took a couple of pictures of the coin at an angle to try and capture the high relief.

    D94A013F-DC72-46C8-B8D9-3910DF07744C.jpeg BA44BEFC-16E4-46FE-9A5F-586DB8B17D4D.jpeg
    The coin is also from one of my favorite periods in history, the Diadochi Wars, which were fought to claim Alexander's empire after he died. Antigonos I Monophthalmos (which translates to Antigonos "the One-Eyed"), had lost an eye in battle while serving under Alexander's father, Philip II. After and during the many wars against other notable figures of the time following Alexander's death, Antigonos ended up occupying a huge amount of territory, including most of Asia Minor, parts of Greece, Phoenicia, and parts of Syria. He eventually named himself King of his territory, and started his own dynasty. He managed to live until 81 years old, an impressive accomplishment for someone who was at war for most of his life, and died in battle at 81 by being hit by a javelin, a nice send-off for a true warrior. Below is a map showing his territory as of 303 BC.

    (Map courtesy of Wikipedia)

    I'm so happy with this new purchase, and would love to see some of your Macedonian tets. Please post your tetradrachms or drachms from Macedon (or post-Macedonian Kingdoms), your coins of Antigonos I, or anything else relevant!
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2020
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  3. Only a Poor Old Man

    Only a Poor Old Man Well-Known Member

    Great tet you got there. Yes, they are always in high relief and they do feel great in hand. Those big chunky tets can be surprising (in a good way) if you are not used to Greek coins. Here is mine, I posted this yesterday in another thread, but it is an Alexander tet after all..

    Theodosius, Andres2, DonnaML and 8 others like this.
  4. PeteB

    PeteB Well-Known Member

    Shea 19:
    A spectacular is your photo!!!
    A treasure!!!
    Shea19 likes this.
  5. Ryro

    Ryro They call me the 13th Caesar Supporter

    Massive Coingrats!!! Antigonos could easily be my favorite Diadochi. Though, they all have such fantastic stories:pompous: Yours has massive eye appeal as well as major historical significance
    Feels so good to roll a big ol tet through your fingers
    Here's my first tet. By a descendant of a different Diadochi:
    MACEDONIAN KINGDOM. Alexander III the Great (336-323 BC). AR tetradrachm (15.98 gm). About VF, countermark, graffito. Late posthumous issue of Perga, dated CY 27 (195/4 BC). Heracles wearing lion-skin, AΛEΞANΔPOY, Zeus seated left on backless throne, right leg drawn back, feet on ground line, eagle in right hand, scepter in left; KI in left field, Seleucid anchor countermark in rectangle in outer right field. Price 2941.

    And my fav Antigonos:
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2020
  6. Alegandron

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

    Great Tet, @Shea19 . Congrats on the capture! Thanks for the writeup.

    Antigonos I Monophthalmos
    Antigonos I Monophthalmos, 323 - 301 B.C., In the Name of Alexander the Great
    AR Drachm, 3.9g, 16.5mm, die axis0
    Magnesia ad Maeandrum mint, c. 319 - c. 305 BCE
    Obv: , Hd of Alexander R, clad in Nemean Lion scalp headdress tied at neck
    Reverse AΛEΞAN∆POY, Zeus seated left on throne without back, nude to waist, himation around hips and legs, right leg drawn back, feet on footstool, eagle in extended right hand, long scepter vertical behind in left hand, ΣΩ monogram left, AT monogram under throne
    Ref: Price1970, Müller Alexander 793, Prokesch-Osten II 84, SNG Cop-, SNG München-, SNG Alpha Bank
    EX: Forum Ancient Coins

    Antigonos I Monophthalmos ("the One-eyed") (382 B.C. - 301 B.C.) was a nobleman, general, and governor under Alexander the Great. Upon Alexander's death in 323 B.C., he established himself as one of the successors and declared himself King in 306 B.C. The most powerful satraps of the empire, Cassander, Seleucus, Ptolemy and Lysimachus, answered by also proclaiming themselves kings. Antigonos found himself at war with all four, largely because his territory shared borders with all of them. He died in battle at Ipsus in 301 B.C. Antigonos' kingdom was divided up, with Seleucus I Nicator gaining the most. His son, Demetrius I Poliorcetes, took Makedon, which the family held, off and on, until it was conquered by Rome in 168 BCE
  7. ominus1

    ominus1 Well-Known Member

    ...very kool coin! :)..i'm afraid i was 'to tight for tets' too poor..(@Ryro i have a shield of ole mono dude??:bucktooth:)..i DO however have a Celtic bronze tet:D..but of Phillip ll...:)
    Shea19 likes this.
  8. Terence Cheesman

    Terence Cheesman Supporter! Supporter

    Alexander III Ar tetradrachm Tyre Minted 332-328/7 BC Obv Head of Herakles in lion skin headdress. Rv. Zeus Aetophoros seated left holding eagle and sceptre Price 3244 at that time attributed to the mint of Ake HGC 910m This coin preceded the dated series from the mint of Tyre. It is also one of my 2020 purchases that did not get into my top 10 alexandert57.jpg
    Theodosius, PeteB, Ryro and 7 others like this.
  9. Shea19

    Shea19 Supporter! Supporter

    Thanks everyone! I appreciate it.

    Thanks, I agree...I have many Roman provincial tetradrachms from Alexandria, Phoenicia and Syria, but none of those have the same kind of high relief as this one. This is my first Greek tetradrachm, but definitely won't be the last.
  10. Shea19

    Shea19 Supporter! Supporter

    @Ryro , love the countermark on your tet, and great eye appeal. I find it so interesting that Alexander-style coins were still being struck in his name that long after his death. Great evidence of what a massive influence his name and image were even after his death, though I suppose it’s not all that different from the US having George Washington on the $1 Bill.

    @Terence Cheesman , gorgeous coin, fits its in well with the other beauties you added this year.

    @Alegandron , great example of old One-Eye...I like the dark toning.
    Alegandron and Ryro like this.
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