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Finally Arrived today AV Lifetime Stater of Alexander the Great


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Alexander III Av Stater Amphipolis 332 -323 BC Obv. Head of Athena right wearing crested Corinthian style helmet. Rv Nike standing left holding wreath in one hand and stylis cradled in other. In upper left field kantharos Price 168 Troxell 480 Series 2 8.61 grms 18 mm Photo from Dr Busso Peus Auction 431alexanderav4.jpg.e7d48f3ce86572ba99ac578c86de9f6c.jpg

  Those who may have known me from CT may remember my continual efforts to study the coinage of Alexander III and my attempts at decerning  his lifetime coinage  from that struck after the death of Alexander in June of 323 BC. This effort has not been made easy by the fact that coinage in his name has been struck into the first century BC. Up to now my primary efforts have been centered on the silver coinage however if the silver is a major headache than the gold is even worse. One of the biggest problems with the gold is that the symbols which accompany the main image on the reverse  can be used for a very long time and can be seen being used in different mints. As an example 


Kassander Av Stater Amphipolis 300-290 BC Obv Helmeted head of Athena right wearing Corinthian style helmet Rv Nike standing left holding wreath and stylis In left field Trident  Price 172 HGC 987 8.60 grms 18 mm Photo by W. Hansen

The symbol of the trident can be seen on staters commencing in 332 BC and ending in 290 BC. Thus style is the major consideration when dealing with these coins.  When I bought this coin back in 2017 I had some hope that this one was a lifetime issue and I was badly disappointed that is was not. This launched my current drive to study the lifetime staters of Alexander. Using Troxell's study on the coinage of Alexander as a basis I began to identify the features that distinguish the lifetime issues from those that came later. 

  Back to my coin. Back in April 2022 I was looking through the auction lots  offered by Dr Busso Peus Auktion  431 Sammlung Dr Plumacher when I spotted this coin. I immediatly checked it out and was happy to discover that it was a obverse die match (and possibly the reverse s well) to Troxell 480 O10/C4 Series 2 As the Series I coins consists of some 6 obverse dies that should place my coin fairly early in the sequence of the Group 2 coinage.  I was unable to access the Peus site of Biddr so I used an agent. needless to say the bidding this coin was rather spirited. I won the coin.

  So what happened. Well one of the coins in the group that mine was in ran afoul of some new German law on antiquities. (wonderful better living through bureaucracy) So everything took forever. However now I got it and all is well. 


Edited by kapphnwn
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Wonderful coin Terrence and glad for you it finally arrived. I see myself trying to obtain a life time alexander issue. But the variation of types is making me dizzy. Do you have any advice? When it comes to silver, I understand there s a difference between the legs of zeus being open or closed. But that's no certainty either, as I understand. 

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13 minutes ago, Limes said:

I understand there s a difference between the legs of zeus being open or closed.

That is urban legend - please forget it.

Unfortunately you have to study the coinage in detail, online as well as printed.

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So, the experts are sure they can identify all phases of the gold coinage of Alexander the great ?  I don't know not my subject.. Hoard evidence?  A lot of this stuff is missing for non specialists!  That's why I ask.


Same with the Philieterus issues of pergamon   who, why  and how are they ordered?  Never seen it simply stated, just alluded to.


That is very common in ancient coins  where's the beef ?...often totally missing. Like my query the other day on coins of the Olympic games. I never knew and until then nobody said.  No body saying is really big in numismatics!


It was me getting my first NewStyle  that I noticed differing dates  on different dealers.  I then asked CNG  and got a sensible reply...read Thompson.  And I took it from there, Thompson for overall dating  I quickly found was immediately undermined  and is a long an interesting story, now accepted as c164 BC  to c42 BC  the sequences  are largely unchanged  but with interesting exceptions!


But only a few of us tell, what we know. Shame


The modern sequencing of the Kyme stephanophores, alluded to but not in actual stone.!  Often stuff might appear tagged on to something else eg L Julius caesar governor of Macedonia, Mattingly  with a good dose of NewStyle talk at the end!!!  Why not a simple paper on it's own!! arghh!  LPGN ll  Lexicon of Greek personal names...review of, Mattingly...more NewStyle talk...bloody hell, bits here, bits there, comments here ignored there!

Edited by NewStyleKing
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There are a number of questions and comments here and I will try to answer them all.

 In regard to @Nerosmyfavorite68 I do not. I did speak to my agent and was informed that the coin was "Baktrian" and worth over $100K I did a basic search of Peus 430 and 431. I was unable to find the coin. I did see another coin that might fit the bill. It is Pontic  but it appeared to have a pretty decent pedigree. I can only assume that if it is this coin and I am not certain that it is that it may have some cultural patrimony issues. As I have only the most cursory understanding of these regulations I really cannot say. 

In regards to @Limes There are a number of books that should be referenced. They include


Alexander the Great Coinage Finances and Policy by Georges Le Rider. This one is more specific to the mint of Amphipolis


Studies in the Coinage of Alexander the Great by Hyla Troxell There also a number of articles written by Lloyd Taylor which can be found in the ANS AJN and Koinon as well. If you are truly desperate I did do some discussion on the thread "Saturday Night Free for All" on the old CT site.  If you find one and would like my opinion feel free to contact me and ask. 

Now to @NewStyleKing I cannot be certain when you started your collection of New Style Athenian coins however after Margaret Thompson published this book back in 1961


 There was a very lively discussion on the dating of this coinage throughout the sixties. The debate was divided into three camps The early championed by Thompson The middle championed by Morkholm and the late. I believe it was eventually resolved in favor of the chronology proposed by Morkholm. This may have been the genesis behind the different dating  you experienced. It must be noted that dating of ancient coins especially the Greek is a very complex and difficult problem. Much of what we know has the solidity of a floor made up of Jell-O. It looks good and appears to be solid but....   My thinking on this coinage is always in flux. My thinking on individual coins within my collection can change over time. One was this coin

Alexander III Ar Tetradrachm Salamis 325-323 BC Obv Beardless head of Herakles right wearing lions skin headdress. Rv Zeus Aetrophoros seated left Price 3139 HGC 910h 17.18 grms 24 mm Photo by W. Hansen


When I bought this coin in 2013 I was happy with the attribution that it was a tetradrachm minted in Salamis during Alexander's lifetime.  However sometime in 2020 I began to question this assumption. A number of things bothered me principally the lack of a footstool and the placement of Zeus' legs. So after ready an article by Troxell which moved the Av staters from Cyprus to Asia Minor, I wondered if perhaps my coin might belong there as well. This would mean that this coin would most likely be posthumous.  I really go nowhere but I then contacted Llyod Taylor and asked him his thoughts on the problem. He responded by sending me an article showing a tetradrachm clearly from the mint of Arados with a very similar image of Zeus. I decided based on this information  that my coin was indeed from Salamis and is likely lifetime. The date of 325-323 BC is speculative. There appears to have ben a great deal of activity in the production of Alexander tetradrachms within the Levant commencing in 325 BC.  


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