Ionia - Magnesia ad Maeandrum, circa 155-145 BC, Magistrate Herognetos, son of Zopryionos. AR Tetradrachm: 16.89 gm, 31 mm, 12 h (reduced Attic standard). Obverse: Draped bust of Artemis wearing a diadem, with bow and quiver over left shoulder. Reverse: Apollo Delphios leaning on tripod censer and holding a branch tied with fillet, meander pattern under feet. The inscription in the left field identifies the issuing authority, and the inscription in the right field translates "of the Magnesians", all within a laurel wreath. SNG von Aulock 7921, BMC Ionia pg. 162. Roma Numismatics Ltd. Auction XX, lot 178, Oct. 2020 Heritage Auction 3081, lot 30081, NGC 2490574-004, Ch AU*, Strike 5/5, Surface 5/5, Jan. 2020 CNG Triton VI, lot 357, Jan. 2003 The instant I saw this coin I remembered seeing it in a Heritage auction earlier this year, however, at that time it was in an NGC slab. The coin was removed from the slab and no mention of the Heritage auction was listed in Roma's description that it was previously sold by Heritage. The Heritage photos of the coin were of poor quality, see the photos below. Whether Roma knew of the the coin's appearance in the Heritage auction and didn't mention it in their description, to give the impression the coin was fresh on the market, or if they didn't know of its past history I don't know and frankly don't care. Never the less, I wanted a coin from this historic auction, and the striking beauty of the coin was too hard to resist, and to top it off I got the coin for less than estimate. Artemis and Apollo were born twins of Zeus and Leto. Artemis later became goddess of the moon, hunt, virginity, and wilderness, and was never married. She was adopted by the Romans who named her Diana. Artemis was the city goddess of Magnesia on the Meander River and a large temple was built there in her honor. Apollo became the god of the sun and music. The mythology of Artemis and Apollo is varied and seems almost endless. Painted pottery cup depicting Apollo and Artemis, circa 470 BC, Louvre, Paris. Ruins of a large amphitheater in Magnesia ad Maeandrum. Stephanophoric tetradrachms (Stephanophori = wreath bearers) are a fascinating and short lived series of Hellenistic coinage of high aesthetic refinement struck during the 2nd century BC. The obverse of these coins depicts an anepigraphic bust of a god or goddess in high relief, and the reverse depicts a variety of subjects and inscriptions all contained within a wreath. The dies were engraved in a manner creating a coin with a convex obverse and concave reverse. The uniformity of style and engraving suggests that the engravers of these coins knew each other. The bulk of these coins were struck in the city states of Aeolis-Myrina, Aeolis-Kyme, and Magnesia ad Maeandrum. Why these coins were minted and why they abruptly stopped being minted has been debated by numismatists for a long time. The Roman Republic gained a strong presence in Wester Asia Minor after defeating Antiochus III, and the signing of the Treaty of Apamaea in 188 BC. The 1st Stephanophoric coinage appears around 154 BC, which coincides with an attack by Prusius II of Bithynia, on territories in Pergamon (156-154 BC). Magnesia on the Meander River was also a victim of his aggression. After being subdued by a coalition of Roman forces, Prusius was ordered to pay an indemnity of of 500 talents of silver and 20 decked ships to the city states victimized by his aggression. This event seems to be the most likely explanation why these coins were minted. They appear to be victory commemoratives of the defeat of Prusius, and when the indemnity of silver ran out they stopped being minted. Aeolis - Myrina, circa 155-145 BC, AR Tetradrachm: 16.51 gm, 31 mm, 12 h. Obverse: Laureate head of Apollo of Grynion. Reverse: Apollo holding phiale and a branch, omphalos and amphora at feet, monogram in left field. The inscription translates "of the Myrinians". SNG Copenhagen 223. Ex Al Kowsky Collection. Myrina was one of the cities on the western coast of Mysia. It was controlled by Philip V of Macedon until he was booted out by Romans. Under Roman rule Myrina was given suzerainty over Grynion, a neighboring city about 4.6 miles south west of Myrina. Grynion was famous for its temple and large marble statue of Apollo, and was a well known tourist stop for the well to-do. These tetradrachms would have made great souvenirs to take home as keepsakes. Aeolis - Kyme, circa 155-145 BC, (1st obverse die in the Kyme series), AR Tetradrachm: 16.58 gm, 30 mm, 12 h. Obverse: Bust of Kyme wearing a diadem. Reverse: Stallion with one leg raised above a single handled cup, magistrate "Metrophanes" in exergue, ethnic city name in right field, all within a laurel wreath. SNG Copenhagen 104 (same dies). Photo courtesy of CNG Auction 88, lot 306. Kyme was the largest of the Aeolian cities and was named after the Amazon warrior Kyme. Amazon was a mythical nation of female warriors who were thought to cut off the right breast of their daughters and cauterize the wound, so upon maturity they could draw a bow string without interference. They lived by hunting and warfare and considered themselves as descendants of Ares, god of war, and the goddess Artemis. They did have contact with men from other tribes but killed or enslaved their male offspring. Stephanophoric coinage was clearly influenced by the Athenian "new style" coinage and was struck by many different city states, however, I've focused this article on the city states that struck the bulk of this coinage for the sake of brevity. Pictured below is one of the "new style" Athenian tetradrachms. Attica - Athens, circa 165-45 BC (struck 165-149 BC), AR Tetradrachm: 16.81 gm, 32 mm, 12 h. Obverse: Helmeted bust of Athena. Reverse: Owl on amphora, monogram in left field, monogram in right field above caps of the Dioscuri, all within a wreath. SNG Copenhagen 115. Photo courtesy of CNG Triton XIII, lot 1212. References: Roma Numismatics Ltd., Auction XX, London, England Classical Numismatic Group (CNG), Lancaster, PA Heritage Auctions, Dallas, TX Wikipedia Gods and Mortals in Classical Mythology, Michael Grant & John Hazel, copyright 1973 If CT members have anything interesting to add, please do so .