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Incusum coin from Metapontum


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I like this incusum coins. They were minted only in some Greek cities in South Italy and in Sicily only in Zankle-Messana and this for a very short period from 520-450 BC.

this is a stater from Metapontum, dated 510-470 BC,HNItaly 1482, a six-grained ear of barley on the obverse and a cable border, on the reverse an incuse of the obverse. albert




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Very nice example! I would LOVE to attempt a collection of all the incusum coins out of Magna Graecia... sadly, this far just the repair Apollo:


Bruttium, Kaulonia. Circa 525-500 BC. AR Nomos (31 mm, 6.63 g).
Obv. Apollo advancing right, holding branch aloft in right hand, left arm extended, upon which a small daimon, holding branch in each hand, runs right; KAVΛ to left; to right, stag standing right, head reverted.
Rev. Incuse of obverse, but daimon in outline and no ethnic.
Noe, Caulonia Group A, 1 (same dies).
Rare. Cracked in three parts, otherwise, very fine/fine


Edited by Ryro
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Beautiful coin, I have a similar for Poseidonia.

AR Drachm,circa 530-500 BC, 25 mm, 2,8 gr, 12 h.

obverse : Poseidon advancing right, holding trident in right hand, left arm extended, draped with a chlamys over both arms, POS to left; HNItaly 1108.

The obverse of your coin is really very nice,  the reverse there is soften not so good. albert





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Ar Nomos of Metapontion 470-440 Bc. Obv ear of barley upon which to the right a grasshopper sits head facing downward.  Rv ear of barley incuse. HN 1486 HGC 1029 8.22 grms 21 mm Photo by W. Hansenmetapontum17.thumb.jpeg.e43fb47994d2f4fa70091f50aea1da56.jpeg

It would appear that over time the diameters of this coinage were reduced. It may have been due to the difficulties associated with the striking of the earlier coins or some other factors. The grasshopper present on this coin may refer to a particularly bad infestation of these creatures which was ended through the intervention of the goddess Demeter. 

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My 1/3 fraction from Metapontion also fits my technical collection since the reverse is doublestruck making two parallel mid ribs on the barley. 




There are also some interesting incuse reverses where the reverse is not a match for the obverse.  This is a stater of Kroton.


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I only have one example of the Magna Graecia incuse types, though I would like to add other types still.

ITALY. Lucania. Metapontion. AR Stater (Nomos) (8.04 gms), ca. 510-470 B.C.
HGC-1, 1028; HN Italy-1482; Noe-184. Obverse: Barley ear; Reverse: Incuse barley ear. Quite deeply toned and pleasing, this charming specimen is nearly free from any problems, with the noted minor edge bend the only issue observed. Typically encountered with more distractions, this piece towers above most and presents a solid, well-centered strike. 


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very nice coins, particulary the doublestrike of Dougsmit.

The next coin is a triobol with the classical obverse and a bucranium incuse on the reverse.13 mm, 1.09 gr, die axe 6 h, ca 470-440,SNGAns260. Normall is the die axe 12 h, because the reverse is exactly as the obverse, but it is 6 h because the shape of te bucranium. albert





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19 hours ago, Brennos said:

It is interesting to note that only obols of Kroton were produced using the repoussé technique.

I prefer to call them litra but should point out that not all 'obols' of this city had matching reverses.  I lack the bull head version but am very fond of my incuse barley grain.



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