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Emesa Mint Tetradrachm of Caracalla


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It's been a long time since I posted anything on this website after starting some special projects. My luck at scoring anything at auction this year has been pretty dismal ☹️, however, I was very happy to score this Emesa tet of Caracalla 😃. The mint-state coin was struck from fresh dies & is highly lustrous, with a well engraved portrait of Caracalla. The unusual mint-mart of a bust of Shamash, the ancient Mesopotamian sun god, is also well engraved for the type. Quoting Michel Prieur from his book: THE SYRO-PHOENICIAN TETRADRACHMS AND THEIR FRACTIONS from 57 BC to AD 253, "From the time of the Severans onwards, religious thinking in the Roman empire moved towards an increasingly strong monotheism. Not only was Christianity part of this trend, but so was the cult of the sun, which expanded with the introduction of Sol Invictus under Gallienus & Aurelian, & became the main cult of the empire." Website members are welcome to post any coins they have struck at the Emesa mint 😊.

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SELEUCIS & PIERIA, Emesa. Caracalla, AD 198-217 (struck AD 215-217). Billon Tetradrachm: 13.04 gm, 26.32 mm, 1 h, officina "A". Obverse: Laureate bust of Caracalla facing right. Reverse: Eagle with spread wings facing left, holding a wreath in his beak; radiate, draped & cuirassed bust of Shamash facing left, between eagle's legs.

  

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Very nice tet and that Shamash mintmark is sweet! Here's a Pythian games issue that I really like.

EmesaPythianElagabalus.jpg.13d50ad690642b69dd4bc90ecf7a1951.jpg

Obv: AVT K M A ANTWNINOC (or similar), radiate head right.
Rev: MHTPO K EMICWN PYQIA HLIA, prize urn on table between two palm branches.
RPC VI, 8362 (Sim.)

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Here is a "poor relative" of the OP coin. 

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25 mm, 12,22 g.
Syria, Seleucis and Pieria, Emesa. Caracalla 198-217. AR tetradrachm. 215-217.
AΥ•T K M ANTΩNEINOC CE•B•, laureate bust right / ΔΗΜΑΡX ΕΞ VΠΑΤOC TO Δ, eagle standing facing, head left, with wreath in beak; H under beak; radiate, draped, and cuirassed bust of Shamash left between legs.
Prieur 983.

This was a very satisfactory purchase. Because a few months before buying it, I was outbid on a better example and I regretted it, as I really liked the portrait with the expressive look and also the particularity of these types (Shamash). I won this one quite unexpectedly, paying a good price and the coin has both the features I was interested in. 

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An exceptional coin, as expected with you @Al Kowsky.

Although I have several Caracalla tetradrachms, none of them has been struck at Emesa. My only one featuring Shamash is for Julia Domna :

 

cc3acad860d54fdfa920cad627e18d59.jpg

Julia Domna, Epouse de Septime Sévère (13/04/193-04/02/211) - Augusta (194-217) - Tetradrachme de billon de l'atelier d'Emese - ca 215-217, officine O

IOYΛIA · · · AYΓOYCTA  Buste drapé et diadémé de Julia à droite, vu par l'avant 
ΔHΜΑPX· · ΕΞ OYCIAC· Aigle de face, les ailes déployées, la tête à gauche, tenant une couronne dans son bec. Entre les pattes, buste radié, drapé et cuirassé de Shamash à gauche. Sous la tête de l'aigle O
26 mm - 13,97 gr - 6h
Ref : Prieur # 995, 
Provenance : Ira & Larry Goldberg auction #128/2361, Ex CNG Sale # 91, Lot 632.

Q

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41 minutes ago, Qcumbor said:

An exceptional coin, as expected with you @Al Kowsky.

Although I have several Caracalla tetradrachms, none of them has been struck at Emesa. My only one featuring Shamash is for Julia Domna :

 

cc3acad860d54fdfa920cad627e18d59.jpg

Julia Domna, Epouse de Septime Sévère (13/04/193-04/02/211) - Augusta (194-217) - Tetradrachme de billon de l'atelier d'Emese - ca 215-217, officine O

IOYΛIA · · · AYΓOYCTA  Buste drapé et diadémé de Julia à droite, vu par l'avant 
ΔHΜΑPX· · ΕΞ OYCIAC· Aigle de face, les ailes déployées, la tête à gauche, tenant une couronne dans son bec. Entre les pattes, buste radié, drapé et cuirassé de Shamash à gauche. Sous la tête de l'aigle O
26 mm - 13,97 gr - 6h
Ref : Prieur # 995, 
Provenance : Ira & Larry Goldberg auction #128/2361, Ex CNG Sale # 91, Lot 632.

Q

Q. Your tet of Julia is exceptional for the type, sporting a great portrait 🤩.

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Posted · Supporter

That’s a beauty Al!  I don’t have a Caracalla yet from Emesa, but I can share this Macrinus from Emesa which has a similar Shamash on the reverse.


IMG_4316.jpeg.8c39d80844c4b130e6cbbea40ba3a987.jpeg

Macrinus, Syria, Emesa mint, BI Tetradrachm (26 mm, 14.47 g). AYT K M OΠ CЄ•••MAKPINOC CЄ Laureate, draped and cuirassed bust of Macrinus to r../ Rev. Eagle with spread wings standing facing, head to l. and holding wreath in beak; between the eagle's legs, radiate, draped and cuirassed bust of Shamash to left. Prieur 974

 

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9 hours ago, Shea19 said:

That’s a beauty Al!  I don’t have a Caracalla yet from Emesa, but I can share this Macrinus from Emesa which has a similar Shamash on the reverse.


IMG_4316.jpeg.8c39d80844c4b130e6cbbea40ba3a987.jpeg

Macrinus, Syria, Emesa mint, BI Tetradrachm (26 mm, 14.47 g). AYT K M OΠ CЄ•••MAKPINOC CЄ Laureate, draped and cuirassed bust of Macrinus to r../ Rev. Eagle with spread wings standing facing, head to l. and holding wreath in beak; between the eagle's legs, radiate, draped and cuirassed bust of Shamash to left. Prieur 974

 

Shea19, Your tet has a wonderful portrait 🤩. Of course the tets of Macrinus are much scarcer than the coins of Caracalla, since he was emperor for only 14 months 😉. The powerful Severan women carefully plotted his assassination to install an even worse candidate for emperor, Elagabalus 🤣.

Pictured below is a tet of Macrinus I scored at a Roma auction several years ago.

MacrinusTet..jpg.8cc13ad534ab8ec35461c2571a80cb37.jpg

SELEUCUS & PIERIA, Emesa. Macrinus, AD 217-218. Billon Tetradrachm: 11.67 gm, 26 mm, 1 h. Prieur 972.

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Great find @Al Kowsky, I am always a big fan of Tets.  And welcome back to posting!  I, too, took a hiatus for a while.  Hoping to become a little more regular.

I do not have a Tet, rather a Quinarius:

 

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RI Caracalla 198-217 AR Quinarius CE 213 1.3g 13.6mm Laureate - Victory Wreath Palm RIC IV 101 RSC 450 R

 

And an everyday Denarius:

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RI Caracalla 198-217 AR Denarius MONETA

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1 hour ago, Ancient Coin Hunter said:

The key tet that I have is this one of Elagabalus, who definitely had a connection with Emesa but the coin was struck in Antioch. I do need to re-photograph the obverse, though.

 

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ACH, I agree, the coin deserves better photos 😉. His portrait looks so innocent; what a surprise the Romans were in for 🤣.

Pictured below is an Elagabalus tet I scored about 5 years ago.

Elagabalustet.October22019.jpg.c4fc89bfa09bd4d2d799bd41b8322b65.jpg

SELEUCIS & PIERIA, Antioch. Elagabalus, AD 218-222 (struck AD 219). Billon Tetradrachm: 13.46 gm, 26 mm, 6 h. Prieur 251 & 264; McAlee 762. Ex Michel Prieur Collection; CNG 67, lot  1132, Sept. 22, 2004.

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