Jump to content

Anyone have any information about the "A.K. Collection"?


CPK
 Share

Recommended Posts

Posted · Supporter

I've heard and seen numerous references to the "A.K. Collection", but I have not been able to find out anything about it - who A.K. was/is, the size and scope of his collection, or any sort of published catalog.

I own an ex-A.K. Collection coin myself, and I'm curious to know more about the former owner of my coin!

Any information you might have would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Benefactor
Posted · Benefactor
Posted (edited)

Whoever A.K. was, a lot of his or her coins were sold by CNG in 2017.  I bought my A.K. Collection coin a couple of years ago from Sphinx Numismatics, which was offering several of them:

Julia Domna, AR Denarius ca. 201 AD, Rome Mint. Obv. Draped bust right, hair waved vertically and fastened in large bun in back, IVLIA AVGVSTA / Rev. Isis, wearing polos on head, draped, standing three-quarters right, head right, holding the nursing infant Horus in left arm against left breast, with her right hand holding a wreath or other ring-shaped object against her chest, her left foot against prow of galley, right, and her left knee bent with Horus resting on it; to left of Isis, rudder rests against altar; SAECVLI FELICITAS.  RIC IV-1 577 (p. 170), RSC III 174 (ill.), Sear RCV II 6606, BMCRE 166. 18x20 mm., 3.35 g., 6 h. Ex CNG Triton XX Auction, Jan. 10, 2017, part of Lot # 614, No. E027; from A.K. Collection.

image.jpeg.6d7bdc896856d303b905897164f9ad43.jpeg

Perhaps the Triton XX catalog, which is probably available online, has more information.

Edited by DonnaML
  • Like 8
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)

I won the A.K. Collection lot linked below in Triton XV (2012). If I ever knew anything specific about "A.K.", I've forgotten (I'm getting old). There were 37 coins total, most or all Judaean city issues. That year and the year prior, I think, I traveled to NYINC early, specifically to look at the Triton large lots in hand and to bid in person. The great thing was that only the few who attended the lot viewing had any idea what the large lots really included.

https://cngcoins.com/Coin.aspx?CoinID=200583

 

1201-2-14.jpg

1201-2-15(2).jpg

1201-2-19 (3).jpg

Edited by DLTcoins
  • Like 11
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Posted · Supporter

Thanks!

I hoped there'd be more info about AK out there, since I've seen coins from his collection fairly frequently. But maybe not! Seems like most collectors like to remain in the shadows. 🤔

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)

Surely the dealers selling these coins would have some idea about who AK was and the scope/significance of the collection, no?

Could just ask the dealers directly, and I know we have several professional dealers on the board here who might be in the know

Edited by jfp7375
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Benefactor
Posted · Benefactor
20 hours ago, DonnaML said:

Whoever A.K. was, a lot of his or her coins were sold by CNG in 2017.  I bought my A.K. Collection coin a couple of years ago from Sphinx Numismatics, which was offering several of them:

Julia Domna, AR Denarius ca. 201 AD, Rome Mint. Obv. Draped bust right, hair waved vertically and fastened in large bun in back, IVLIA AVGVSTA / Rev. Isis, wearing polos on head, draped, standing three-quarters right, head right, holding the nursing infant Horus in left arm against left breast, with her right hand holding a wreath or other ring-shaped object against her chest, her left foot against prow of galley, right, and her left knee bent with Horus resting on it; to left of Isis, rudder rests against altar; SAECVLI FELICITAS.  RIC IV-1 577 (p. 170), RSC III 174 (ill.), Sear RCV II 6606, BMCRE 166. 18x20 mm., 3.35 g., 6 h. Ex CNG Triton XX Auction, Jan. 10, 2017, part of Lot # 614, No. E027; from A.K. Collection.

 

Perhaps the Triton XX catalog, which is probably available online, has more information.

Triton XX had this to say (P204)...

image.jpeg.23b98628d948124112d022a1d396e660.jpeg

 

The sale is indeed online here...

CNG Triton XX Sessions 1 and 2 by Classical Numismatic Group, LLC - Issuu

with additional lot information here...

The A.K. Collection (cngcoins.com)

 

Cheers,

Steve

  • Like 6
  • Thanks 4
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Benefactor
Posted · Benefactor
Posted (edited)

Thanks.  My guess from the list of sources is that A.K. is or was German.  However, I think it would be a mistake to assume that dealers who now sell coins from the A.K. Collection would have any idea who A.K. was.

Unfortunately, if I recall correctly, the separate catalog detailing all the coins in the A.K. Collection lots is no longer available online. When I bought my one coin from the collection (see above), the dealer (who had obtained a copy of the catalog several years ago) sent me a copy of the part of the page from that catalog including my coin.  It's the second of these two coins:

image.jpeg.7d6112a9691ba3ee0e3a0ba3fcb371e5.jpeg

 

Edited by DonnaML
  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Benefactor
Posted · Benefactor

I know I have at least one of the AK Triton sub-catalogs. With luck it will be 2017, but I suspect it's earlier. I'll see if I can find it.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Posted · Administrator
20 hours ago, DLTcoins said:

I won the A.K. Collection lot linked below in Triton XV (2012). If I ever knew anything specific about "A.K.", I've forgotten (I'm getting old). There were 37 coins total, most or all Judaean city issues. That year and the year prior, I think, I traveled to NYINC early, specifically to look at the Triton large lots in hand and to bid in person. The great thing was that only the few who attended the lot viewing had any idea what the large lots really included.

https://cngcoins.com/Coin.aspx?CoinID=200583

 

1201-2-14.jpg

1201-2-15(2).jpg

1201-2-19 (3).jpg

Pardon my ignorance but what's going on with the coin in the middle? Is that a bankers mark, the smaller head inside the larger head? It's super interesting, not sure I've seen something like that before! 

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Benefactor
Posted (edited)

The little "inside knowledge" I have about the AK Collection comes from eavesdropping in the viewing room of a Hess-Divo auction some years back. The collection was definitely German; Hess-Divo and (I think) Martina Dieterle were involved in brokering the consignment to Triton. The consigner, who I surmise was/were the heir(s) of the actual collector, firmly insisted for unknown reasons on selling it via this unusual and counter-intuitive method. They were pleased with the results of the first installment and obviously persisted in offering it this way. I don't believe anyone at CNG interacted directly with the consignor; certainly not initially, probably not later either. At the time of the first part, they (CNG) really had no more information about the consignor's identity than was made public; it's possible they've learned more since. The consignor's tickets were apparently discarded; in any case, they definitely weren't available. (I asked.)

I bought that first installment for HJB stock; here's a note I posted about it... um, somewhere else:

I bought the very first AK lot, all RR silver, for HJB stock. Really nice coins, with provenances going back to Haeberlin. The firm did well; I kept this coin and one other as a sort of finder's fee (That was fair; Harlan knew he would never have noticed this lot on his own.) I would've bought the whole lot myself if I had to, just to get this coin.

Here's the coin I badly wanted:

phil-47-jpg.986052

I don't believe I have an image of the other coin I kept; for the record, it was Crawford 356/1a, reportedly ex Haeberlin. There were six or seven ex Haeberlin coins in the lot; interestingly, none of them were pictured in the 1933 Cahn-Hess catalogue. All but one of the weights matched and I've no reason to dispute the provenance, but it's one that can never be "proven" really. I doubt that the AK collector personally attended the Haeberlin sale, as the other AK provenances were significantly more recent, although still "old;" mostly '50s and '60s, maybe just into the '70s. 

I distinctly remember the late Tom Cederlind throwing down his paddle in disgust when I won the lot. We never discussed it, but his shade might be relieved to learn that I would've gone quite a bit higher if I needed to.

Edited by Phil Davis
  • Like 12
  • Thanks 1
  • Yes 1
  • Mind blown 1
  • Heart Eyes 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Benefactor
Posted · Benefactor
2 hours ago, rNumis said:

I know I have at least one of the AK Triton sub-catalogs. With luck it will be 2017, but I suspect it's earlier. I'll see if I can find it.

I wonder why CNG took the 2017 AK Collection sub-catalog offline. The link you gave has descriptions of only about half of the lots, not including the one my coin came from.

  • Yes 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Benefactor
Posted · Benefactor
1 hour ago, Phil Davis said:

The little "inside knowledge" I have about the AK Collection comes from eavesdropping in the viewing room of a Hess-Divo auction some years back. The collection was definitely German; Hess-Divo and (I think) Martina Dieterle were involved in brokering the consignment to Triton. The consigner, who I surmise was/were the heir(s) of the actual collector, firmly insisted for unknown reasons on selling it via this unusual and counter-intuitive method. They were pleased with the results of the first installment and obviously persisted in offering it this way. I don't believe anyone at CNG interacted directly with the consignor; certainly not initially, probably not later either. At the time of the first part, they (CNG) really had no more information about the consignor's identity than was made public; it's possible they've learned more since. The consignor's tickets were apparently discarded; in any case, they definitely weren't available. (I asked.)

I bought that first installment for HJB stock; here's a note I posted about it... um, somewhere else:

I bought the very first AK lot, all RR silver, for HJB stock. Really nice coins, with provenances going back to Haeberlin. The firm did well; I kept this coin and one other as a sort of finder's fee (That was fair; Harlan knew he would never have noticed this lot on his own.) I would've bought the whole lot myself if I had to, just to get this coin.

Here's the coin I badly wanted:

phil-47-jpg.986052

I don't believe I have an image of the other coin I kept; for the record, it was Crawford 356/1a, reportedly ex Haeberlin. There were six or seven ex Haeberlin coins in the lot; interestingly, none of them were pictured in the 1933 Cahn-Hess catalogue. All but one of the weights matched and I've no reason to dispute the provenance, but it's one that can never be "proven" really. I doubt that the AK collector personally attended the Haeberlin sale, as the other AK provenances were significantly more recent, although still "old;" mostly '50s and '60s, maybe just into the '70s. 

I distinctly remember the late Tom Cederlind throwing down his paddle in disgust when I won the lot. We never discussed it, but his shade might be relieved to learn that I would've gone quite a bit higher if I needed to.

A gorgeous example, @Phil Davis! I believe it's the same sub-type as mine, as is @Hrefn's, namely Crawford 282/5:

Roman Republic, L. Porcius Licinius, L. Licinius Crassus and Cn. Domitius Ahenobarbus, AR Serrate Denarius, Narbo Mint [Narbo Martius colony (Narbonne), Province of Gaul], 118 BCE [year of Narbo’s founding].* Obv. Head of Roma right wearing winged helmet, necklace, and drop earring, with hair in two curling locks extending down from helmet; L•PORCI upwards in front; LICI downwards behind followed by mark of value * [= XVI asses] behind neck / Rev. Naked, bearded Gallic warrior [possibly Bituitus, king of Arverni; see 2nd fn.] driving galloping biga right, holding shield with criss-cross pattern, dragon-head carnyx, and reins in left hand, and hurling spear with right hand; in exergue, L•LIC•CN•DOM. Crawford 282/5; BMCRR I Rome 1187; RSC I Porcia 8 (ill. p. 81) [this type is also RSC I Licinia 15 and Domitia 19]; Sear RCV I 158; see also Yarrow p. 110 & Fig. 2.68 at p. 113 [Liv Mariah Yarrow, The Roman Republic to 49 BCE: Using Coins as Sources (2021)]; RBW Collection 1110 (ill. p. 229); Foss p. 2 (The Republic No. 2a) [Clive Foss, Roman Historical Coins (Seaby, London, 1990)].  20 mm., 3.39 g., 8 h. Purchased from Roma Numismatics Ltd., E-Auction 96, 5 May 2022, Lot 893 (from “Vitangelo” Collection).**

 image.thumb.jpeg.8cb34888169515a14ce5c69e6467de33.jpeg

*On stylistic and other grounds, Mattingly argues for a somewhat later date, ca. 115-114 BCE. See See Harold B. Mattingly, “Roman Republican Coinage ca. 150-90 B.C.,” in From Coins to History (2004), pp. 199-226 at pp. 210-211. 

**See Sear RCV I at p. 106 regarding the five different types of Crawford 282, i.e., this type (Crawford 282/5) and Crawford 282/1-282/4: “This extraordinary issue, distinguished by flans with serrated edges, was minted at the newly-founded city of Narbo, the first Roman colony in Gaul. The two principal magistrates (Licinius Crassus and Domitius Ahenobarbus) produced their coins in association with five junior colleagues” – one subtype for each of them, in this case L. Porcius Licinius. For each subtype, the junior magistrate’s name appears on the obverse and the two principal magistrates’ names appear on the reverse. See also Crawford I p. 298. 

For identification of the three moneyers/magistrates named on this type, see Crawford I pp. 298-299: 

“The L. Licinius who is one of the two senior monetary magistrates was surely the L. Licinius Crassus responsible for the [founding of the] colony . . . . [and] was Cos. 95; Cn. Domitius Ahenobarbus seems to have struck coinage as moneyer also (no. 285) and to have been Cos. 96. Their junior associates did not have distinguished careers - . . . . L. Porcius Licinus is presumably the grandson or great-grandson of L. Porcius Licinus, Cos. 184.” See also BMCRR I pp. 184-185 n. 1 (re the two senior magistrates); p. 185 n. 1 (re L. Porcius Licinus). 

Regarding the scene on the reverse, Crawford states as follows at Vol. I p. 299: “The accoutrements of the figure in the biga forming the reverse type are purely Gallic (note the carnyx and the criss-cross pattern on the shield, similar to those on [Crawford] no. 281/1[issued by  M Fovri L.f. Philus]. . . . The figure is clearly a Gaul . . . ; that the figure is the Gallic king Bituitus, captured by the father of Cn. Domitius Ahenobarbus according to the probably mendacious account of Valerius Maximus . . . and Eutropius . . ., seems incapable of proof.” Contra BMCRR I pp. 184-185 n. 1: “The reverse type, which is common to the coins of all the moneyers of this issue, records the victory in Gaul of Cnaeus Domitius Ahenobarbus, the father of the [magistrate], over the Allobroges and their ally, Bituitus, king of the Arverni, who is represented in his chariot. Bituitus was shortly afterwards taken prisoner by C. Fabius Maximus, and figured in Rome in his own chariot of silver at the triumph of Fabius.” RSC I (3rd ed. 1978), although published post-Crawford, continues to follow this interpretation. See id. p. 18 (note to Aurelia 20). [Remainder of footnote, quoting Yarrow in extenso, omitted. See https://www.numisforums.com/topic/169-roman-republican-coin-72-crawford-2825-romagallic-warrior-in-biga/#comment-2800 .) 

 

  • Like 11
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I've been asked a number of times if I was the mysterious A.K., the answer is no 🤣. In the past I did mark a number of my photos "AK Collection", which added to the confusion. After seeing so many coins appear at auction from the A.K. Collection, I changed the ID on my photos by adding my middle initial W to AWK Collection, or I use Al Kowsky Collection 😊. Pictured below is my Bituitus denarius.2010637622_2491170-003AKCollection.jpg.c5ed6a44903497de2d8f2022c6d44806.jpg

  • Like 8
  • Smile 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have a few from it. Many of AK's Julia Domnas were in a group lot.

[IMG]
Roman AR Denarius, 3.66 g, 18.2 mm, 1 h.
Rome mint, AD 195.
Obv: IVLIA AVGVSTA, bare-headed and draped bust right.
Rev: VESTA, Vesta seated left, holding palladium in right hand, transverse scepter in left.
Refs: RIC 582; BMCRE --; Cohen 223 var. (aureus); RCV --; Hill 187; CRE 415.
Notes: Ex-Perron collection 1960; ex-A.K. collection; ex-CNG lot #614, Triton XX.

[IMG]
Julia Domna, AD 193-217.
Roman AR denarius, 3.53 g, 20.0 mm, 12 h.
Rome, AD 202-203.
Obv: IVLIA AVGVSTA, bare-headed and draped bust, right.
Rev: HILARITAS, Hilaritas standing left, holding patera and palm branch.
Refs: RIC 558; BMCRE p. 161, *; Cohen/RSC 78; RCV --; CRE 351; Hill 554; ERIC II 97.
Notes: Ex-CNG; Ex-AK collection; Wildwinds "plate" coin.

[IMG]
Julia Domna, AD 193-217.
Roman AR denarius, 3.37 g, 17.6 mm, 1 h.
Rome, AD 196-211.
Obv: IVLIA AVGVSTA, bare-headed and draped bust, right.
Rev: VENVS FELIX, Venus standing left, holding apple in right hand and drawing out fold of drapery with left hand.
Refs: RIC 580; BMCRE 85-89; Cohen 198; RCV --; CRE 397; Hill 379, 394.
Notes: Ex-Perron collection, 1960; ex-AK collection; CNG Triton XX, lot 614.

  • Like 7
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Roman Collector said:

I have a few from it. Many of AK's Julia Domnas were in a group lot.

[IMG]
Roman AR Denarius, 3.66 g, 18.2 mm, 1 h.
Rome mint, AD 195.
Obv: IVLIA AVGVSTA, bare-headed and draped bust right.
Rev: VESTA, Vesta seated left, holding palladium in right hand, transverse scepter in left.
Refs: RIC 582; BMCRE --; Cohen 223 var. (aureus); RCV --; Hill 187; CRE 415.
Notes: Ex-Perron collection 1960; ex-A.K. collection; ex-CNG lot #614, Triton XX.

[IMG]
Julia Domna, AD 193-217.
Roman AR denarius, 3.53 g, 20.0 mm, 12 h.
Rome, AD 202-203.
Obv: IVLIA AVGVSTA, bare-headed and draped bust, right.
Rev: HILARITAS, Hilaritas standing left, holding patera and palm branch.
Refs: RIC 558; BMCRE p. 161, *; Cohen/RSC 78; RCV --; CRE 351; Hill 554; ERIC II 97.
Notes: Ex-CNG; Ex-AK collection; Wildwinds "plate" coin.

[IMG]
Julia Domna, AD 193-217.
Roman AR denarius, 3.37 g, 17.6 mm, 1 h.
Rome, AD 196-211.
Obv: IVLIA AVGVSTA, bare-headed and draped bust, right.
Rev: VENVS FELIX, Venus standing left, holding apple in right hand and drawing out fold of drapery with left hand.
Refs: RIC 580; BMCRE 85-89; Cohen 198; RCV --; CRE 397; Hill 379, 394.
Notes: Ex-Perron collection, 1960; ex-AK collection; CNG Triton XX, lot 614.

The original lot 614 from Triton XX was 59 coins of Julia Domna, that hammered for $2,750.00 with many rarities in the group 😲. Did you score your 3 coins from the winner of that lot 🤔?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Benefactor
Posted · Benefactor
Posted (edited)
51 minutes ago, Al Kowsky said:

The original lot 614 from Triton XX was 59 coins of Julia Domna, that hammered for $2,750.00 with many rarities in the group 😲. Did you score your 3 coins from the winner of that lot 🤔?

My A.K. Collection example, like @Roman Collector's examples, also came from Lot 614 in Triton XX. I bought it in May 2020 on VCoins from Youssef Mishriki of Sphinx Numismatics, which is located in Markham, Ontario, Canada. He had a number of coins from that lot for sale, and had a copy of the sub-catalog, but I don't know if he was the original winner of the lot.

Edited by DonnaML
  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

54 minutes ago, Al Kowsky said:

The original lot 614 from Triton XX was 59 coins of Julia Domna, that hammered for $2,750.00 with many rarities in the group 😲. Did you score your 3 coins from the winner of that lot 🤔?

I bought two of them from Sphinx and one from Frank Robinson. 

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)

This is a good thread. Special thanks to @Phil Davis and @rNumisfor the information and links.

A while back I conceived an idea to do a series of posts on historic collectors / collections but I only finished a write up on one collection. Perhaps I’ll need to pick up that idea again. 

Edited by Curtisimo
  • Like 5
  • Clap 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...