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Faustina Friday – An Æ 17 of Nacrasa in Lydia


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Friday felicitations, fellow Faustina fanatics! I hope you have a wonderful weekend!

This little provincial bronze is a recent acquisition. It is my second coin of Faustina the Younger from Nacrasa, a former Seleucid stronghold in northern Lydia that had once been garrisoned by a Macedonian guard. It was an important fortress for the Kingdom of Pergamon, securing the road from Thyatira to Pergamum. Many scholars believe the towns known as Acrasus (Ἄκρασος) and Nacrasa (Νάκρασα) in various ancient sources are one and the same,[1,2] but this is uncertain.[3,4]

1679197457_lydia_mapcloseup.jpg.6f10e27536e1bc42115d86563ee4986f.jpg

This map (uncited) from Ancientmoney.org[4] depicts Nacrasa and Acrasus as being two separate cities.


It appears the city first struck coinage under Domitian and its last coins were struck under Marcus Aurelius. The various Strategoi under whose authority the issues were minted are typically, though not universally, named on the coins of this city. The reverse types chiefly refer to the cults of Artemis, Kybele, and Asklepios.[5] My coin depicts a rather quotidian Tyche with her usual attributes.

1571416080_FaustinaJrNacrasaTychestanding.jpg.948b0c6b2a625a21753d7b9e26531d73.jpg

Faustina II, AD 147-175.
Roman provincial Æ 16.5 mm, 2.71 g, 6 h.
Lydia, Nacrasa, likely issued under Strategoi Ai. Philippos or Pardalas Menophi(ou), c. AD 164-166.
Obv: ΦΑVϹΤΕΙΝΑ CEBASTH (sic), draped bust of Faustina, right, with a single strand of pearls about her head (Beckmann type 7 hairstyle).
Rev: ΝΑΚΡΑ-ϹEΩΝ, Tyche standing, left, wearing kalathos, holding rudder and cornucopiae.
Refs: BMC 22.
169, 25; RPC IV.2 1352 temp; GRPC 86; SNG Cop 302.


One interesting feature of this coin is its obverse inscription. It may have been engraved by a Latin-speaking die engraver, for it features the Roman letter S in ϹEΒΑSTH instead of the expected lunate sigma used by the Greeks. I find linguistic phenomena such as this fascinating.

81933993_FaustinaJrNacrasaTychestandingcloseup.jpg.904d0076b7a4e650d45a927f069a010d.jpg

Note the use of the Latin S (marked with arrow) instead of the expected Greek C in CEBASTH.


The auction firm included this Dutch-language collector's tag, which can't be terribly old because it mentions a price in Euros and lists Sear GIC as a reference consulted. Does anyone recognize its handwriting or know who used tags of this nature?

2001029301_FaustinaJrNacrasaTychestandingcollectorstag.jpg.f288350efc759aae50f60028c7f35c62.jpg

Previous collector's tag included with the coin.


Post any coins you have of Nacrasa or anything you feel is relevant!

~~~

Notes:

1. Smith, William. Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography. Vol. 2, Little, Brown & Co., 1865, p. 395.
Available online at The Perseus Project.

2. "Akrasos." Pleiades,
https://pleiades.stoa.org/places/554181

3. Head, Barclay Vincent. A Catalogue of the Greek Coins in the British Museum: Lydia. Printed by Order of the Trustees, 1901, pp. lxxvi-lxxvii. Available online at Forum Ancient Coins.

4. See, for example, Ancientmoney.org, Map of Ancient Lydia,
https://www.ancientmoney.org/non_greek_kingdoms/lydia_map.html.

5. Head, op cit., pp. lxxvii-lxxviii.

Edited by Roman Collector
Increase size of bifocal-defying font
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Interesting observation about the legend. I also like spotting interesting aspects in Provincial legends - my favorite being the erorrs.

 

Here is my only coin from Nakrasa. I bought it because I like the contrast between the fields and the design.

image.png.ab402e88e665df93dbc6144a7f6c790a.png

ΑΥΤΟ ΤΡΑΙΑΝΟϹ ΑΔΡΙΑΝΟϹ, laureate and cuirassed bust of Hadrian, r. / ΝΑΚΡΑϹΙΤΩΝ, Tyche standing l., wearing kalathos, holding rudder in r. hand, cornucopia in l. RPC III 1085

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7 minutes ago, ambr0zie said:

Interesting observation about the legend. I also like spotting interesting aspects in Provincial legends - my favorite being the erorrs.

 

Here is my only coin from Nakrasa. I bought it because I like the contrast between the fields and the design.

image.png.ab402e88e665df93dbc6144a7f6c790a.png

ΑΥΤΟ ΤΡΑΙΑΝΟϹ ΑΔΡΙΑΝΟϹ, laureate and cuirassed bust of Hadrian, r. / ΝΑΚΡΑϹΙΤΩΝ, Tyche standing l., wearing kalathos, holding rudder in r. hand, cornucopia in l. RPC III 1085

Yours has Tyche, too!

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Nice coins! I have only two coins from Nacrasa, none with Faustina, but both are part of my Artemis/Diana collection

 

normal_G_389_Nacrasa_fac.jpg.cd47eb507fb6ac431b4fde8bae995d91.jpg

LYDIA. Nacrasa.
Pseudo-autonomous.
Time of Hadrian (117-138).
Artemidoros, strategos.
Obv: NAKPACITΩN, draped bust of Artemis left, with quiver over shoulder; bow to left.
Rev: ЄΠI CTPATHΓOV APTЄMIΔOPOY, Apollo standing left, holding branch.
AE, 8.53g, 24mm
Ref.: GRPC Lydia Vol.3 Nacrasa 3, RPC 1808A-4 (this coin)

 

normal_Trajan_07.jpg.ae1e4c38349b7ff170f50022794ff910.jpg

Trajan
Lydia, Nacrasa
AD 98-117
Obv: AV NЄP TPAIANON CЄ, Laureate head right.
Rev: NAKPACITΩN, Tetrastyle temple, with pellet in pediment and containing Artemis standing left, holding bow and drawing arrow from quiver on back.
AE, 4.91g, 19mm
Ref.: Lindgren III 492; Hunter 1

 

EDIT: three coins, I forgot this one

normal_Nakrasa_01.jpg.f6a024e4825f6c24db131859c42b1dd6.jpg

Lydia, Nakrasaionia
Pseudo-autonomous issue
Time of Trajan and Hadrian, 98-138 AD
Obv.: EΠΙ CΤΡΑ - ΜΑΡ ΙΟΥΝΙΑΝΟΥ, bearded head of Herakles right
Rev.: NAKRA-CITΩN; snake encircling omphalos
AE, 16 mm, 2.8 g
Ref.: SNG München 335, SNG Copenhagen 295, Lindgren III 496

 

Edited by shanxi
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Very interesting, RC.  I found a single one in my collection - as far as I can tell, it is from around the Antonine period, but no emperor/empress - an inferior copy of that nice one posted by @shanxi- : 

905792088_NacrasaLydia-HerculesSnakeApr2020(0).jpg.7d32402193b084d22351daea7dda485b.jpg

Nacrasa, Lydia Æ 16 (c. 98-161 A.D.Semi-autonomous Markos Iounianos, Strategos EΠI [CTΡA] MA[Ρ IOYNIA]NOY, Bearded head of Herakles right / NAKΡA[CI]TΩN, serpent coiled around omphalos, head right. RPC III 1812; SNG Cop 295. (2.76 grams / 16 mm) eBay April 2020

Edited by Marsyas Mike
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Lydia, Nacrasa. Hadrian, AD 117-138. Æ15 (2.46g, 12h). Obv: AY TPAI AΔPIANOC; Laureate bust right in cuirass and paludamentum. Rev: NAKΡACITΩN; Draped bust of Demos of Nacrasa right. Ref: BMC Lydia 19; SNG Cop 300; SNG von Aulock 3037; RPC III, 1804.

 

aaa.jpg

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