Parthicus Posted January 28 · Member Share Posted January 28 (photo borrowed from seller because I had trouble photographing such a small coin) Parthian Kingdom. Ekbatana mint. AE chalkos (1.17 g, 12 mm). Vonones I (8-12 CE). Obverse: Diademed bust of king left, Greek legend before and above "Basileus Onwnhes" (King Vonones). Reverse: Nike walking right, Ekbatana mintmark before. Sellwood 60.10, Shore 564. This coin: Pars Coins Auction 34, lot 53 (January 23, 2023).Vonones I was the eldest son of the Parthian king Phraates IV (38-2 BC). Around 10 or 9 BC, he and three of his brothers were sent to live at Rome. The Romans depicted this as "submission" of Parthia to Rome, but it also served to clear the way for Parthian succession by their much younger brother Phraatakes. In 2 BC, Phraatakes and his mother Musa murdered Phraates and seized the throne. That exciting tale of intrigue, murder, and incest deserves its own write-up, which I've given before over on CoinTalk ( https://www.cointalk.com/threads/if...-dont-you-just-marry-her.350979/#post-3911792 ). After the overthrow of Phraatakes and Musa in 4 AD, the Parthian nobles installed a new king, Orodes III, in 6 AD. However, they soon afterwards got rid of him for "excessive cruelty" (and considering how cruel some of the other Parthian kings were, he must have been a monster if that was the reason for his downfall). The Parthian nobles now asked Rome for one of the sons of Phraates IV to be returned as their king, and Vonones was duly sent. Vonones, however, had become much too Westernized during his stay at Rome, and he no longer cared for the manly Parthian pastimes of hunting, feasting, and horsemanship. The nobles summoned another member of the royal Arsakid family, Artabanos (IV), who was serving as king of Media Atropatene (roughly modern Azerbaijan), who attempted to overthrow Vonones but initially failed. A couple of years later Artabanos tried again and this time successfully deposed Vonones, who fled to Armenia and served for a time as the Armenian king. Vonones was removed from the Armenian throne about 17 AD (the exact date varies by source) and remanded to the custody of the Roman governor of Syria. After he attempted to stir up trouble among tribal chiefs in the Mesopotamian frontier near Parthia, he was sent farther away, to Cilicia. In 19 AD he bribed his guards and attempted to flee back to Armenia, but he was killed before reaching the frontier. A son of Vonones, Meherdates, would later stage his own rebellion in Parthia in 49-51 AD.The coins of Vonones I stand out in the Parthian series for the king's unusual choice to list his full personal name in the legends, instead of just the dynastic name of Arsakes. This is a great boon to historians and numismatists, as it gives a solid anchor in the assignment of coin types to specific kings. While this coin is not very well preserved, I bought it because it is rather rare (Shore rates bronzes of Vonones I at rarity "R" in his Rarity and Value Guide) and it completes my denomination set for Vonones I, as I already have a tetradrachm and a drachm: Please post your coins of Vonones I, or whatever else is related. 9 1 Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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