Friday, February 7, 2014

A Mystery Coin - Who Are You?

First the coin:

A attractive little thing, I like the off center strike that has the portrait kind of peering out at us from off to one side.

As to its origins the odd "bottle cap" pattern gives a general clue.  Coins of this sort were poured into special molds before being struck.  By one theory the serrated edge assured those who accepted the coin that it was solid metal, although with cheap bronze it is hard to see why this was an issue.  This type was pretty much only used by the Seleucid Empire.

The Seleucids were the Rodney Dangerfields of the ancient world, never got no respect.  Their sprawling domains stretched across Turkey out into Afghanistan and even into India.  But this remnant of Alexander the Great's conquests got eaten up by the Persians on the East and the up and coming Roman Empire on the West.

I would love to have somebody identify this coin but to my eyes all the Seleucid coinage looks similar, vaguely smiling androgynous kings and deities.


The Old Man said...

Good luck, amigo. I know bupkis about old coins, but I enjoy your musings. Danke.

Tacitus2 said...


There is something inherently sad about coinage from "successor" states. Be it the various Gothic kingdoms that followed Rome or the squabbling entities that sprang up when Alexander's world spanning empire imploded at his death.

There is a strong sense of Egypt most of the kings were named Ptolemy (15) and their queens Cleopatra(about 8). And in the Selucid corner of things they got up to Antiochus XIII !

So a betting man would go with that name for our smiling little coin munchkin.

Appreciate the wishes for good luck. An extra ration for next week would be a help.......


scottcalhoun said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
scottcalhoun said...

Looks similar to the Antiochus Epiphanes the IV coin found here: