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Is this an Alexander lifetime bronze coin ?


Kosmas
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...the face of Medusa (or some Gorgon)..(yours is upside down:P)..and yours has a bipenis on the helmet side...kool coin kosmas! (altho i'm not exactly sure who it was minted under @Ryro:P)

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Edited by ominus1
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Kosmas, when you have a question like this ACSearch is a great resource as a first step. I'm not familiar with these coins myself but found it first try by guessing some keywords: https://www.acsearch.info/search.html?term=gorgon+ae+helmet+alexander&category=1-2&lot=&thesaurus=1&images=1&en=1&de=1&fr=1&it=1&es=1&ot=1&currency=usd&order=1

I suspect your coin is currently up for auction and the auction house likely provided the necessary info for identifying the coin but, if not, guessing what it might be usually brings up the coin sooner or later in ACSearch.  

Since you're often asking about Alexander III coins, you'll want to familiarise yourself with PELLA. The coins in ACSearch will likely reference the Price number that identifies the type and you can then find it in PELLA to find more info about the coin, i.e. - https://numismatics.org/pella/id/price.2065

These are the steps many of us take to answer these questions unless we're intimately familiar with the coinage in question. Of course, if you go through those steps and still have questions, then it's worthwhile asking others here.

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9 minutes ago, Kaleun96 said:

Kosmas, when you have a question like this ACSearch is a great resource as a first step. I'm not familiar with these coins myself but found it first try by guessing some keywords: https://www.acsearch.info/search.html?term=gorgon+ae+helmet+alexander&category=1-2&lot=&thesaurus=1&images=1&en=1&de=1&fr=1&it=1&es=1&ot=1&currency=usd&order=1

I suspect your coin is currently up for auction and the auction house likely provided the necessary info for identifying the coin but, if not, guessing what it might be usually brings up the coin sooner or later in ACSearch.  

Since you're often asking about Alexander III coins, you'll want to familiarise yourself with PELLA. The coins in ACSearch will likely reference the Price number that identifies the type and you can then find it in PELLA to find more info about the coin, i.e. - https://numismatics.org/pella/id/price.2065

These are the steps many of us take to answer these questions unless we're intimately familiar with the coinage in question. Of course, if you go through those steps and still have questions, then it's worthwhile asking others here.

This coin IS MINE and is not in any auction house Right now ... From my search until now I think it's a lifetime .

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Ha! I answered your DM before seeing this. Here is what I said, for others interested:

Nice new coin! Macedonian shield coins are my specialty. 

 

These are more likely posthumous by can be hard to differentiate lifetime with posthumous. The helmet on the reverse has two symbols below. The K to the lower right is most likely for Asandros. A man Alexander assigned to Miletos, whom stayed there from 323-319. Alexander’s mysterious death took place right after in 323BCE. Due to this you'll often see them attribute to his older brother, Philip III Arrhidaios. So, it may be lifetime. But is a coin he would have been aware of (even if he had no use for it).

 

The symbol to the lower left is double axe called labrys, which gives us our modern term labyrinth. This is due to the labyrinth of the Minotaur on Crete having many of the axes on its walls!

 

Your Gorgon (Medusa) at the boss/ shield center is upside down in your picture. 

 

Here are a few of mine of mine:

2422253_1639333767.l-removebg-preview.png.18eedbf6fed26b9471257ccc1dbba000.png2367088_1637160956.l-removebg-preview.png.b623fc6867260c8a6b57a5e0e5e179ca.pngIMG_5738(1).PNG.442fe8eeb6947cdeeaee3f28ea7232bc.PNG

*found one more that I didn't add to the DM!

Alexander III The Great (336-323 BCE) or Philip III Arrhidaios. 323-317 BC. Æ Half Unit (16.5mm, 3.80 g, 2h). Miletos(?) mint. Struck under Asandros, circa 323-319 BC. Macedonian shield with Gorgoneion on central boss / Helmet; labrys to left, K to right. Price 2064.

 

 

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50 minutes ago, Kosmas said:

This coin IS MINE and is not in any auction house Right now ... From my search until now I think it's a lifetime .

Do you want to share what you have found so far? The link I gave you, for Price 2065 (or 2064, depending on the weight/denomination of your coin, which you didn't provide), says 320 BC as the mint date and it seems auction houses use this attribution too so it would be interesting to see where you're finding a lifetime date for it.

@Ryro mentions they may date slightly earlier to 323 BC (though likely still posthumous) so it's possible there is more recent, or otherwise competing, research out there that dates them earlier than Price/PELLA does. That could be because new evidence has come to light or existing evidence has been interpreted differently.

 

2065.png

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11 minutes ago, Kaleun96 said:

Do you want to share what you have found so far? The link I gave you, for Price 2065 (or 2064, depending on the weight/denomination of your coin, which you didn't provide), says 320 BC as the mint date and it seems auction houses use this attribution too so it would be interesting to see where you're finding a lifetime date for it.

@Ryro mentions they may date slightly earlier to 323 BC (though likely still posthumous) so it's possible there is more recent, or otherwise competing, research out there that dates them earlier than Price/PELLA does. That could be because new evidence has come to light or existing evidence has been interpreted differently.

 

2065.png

Maybe is lifetime maybe not ..

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10 minutes ago, Kosmas said:

Maybe is lifetime maybe not ..

Sure, let's leave it there and call it a day, why bother trying 🤦‍♂️

For others interested, I checked Price's work and I can't find where he specifies the date for these types from Miletus. He cites the Caria hoard, but I believe that is just to reaffirm their belonging to Miletus, and he cites Thompson's ADM I, who mentions them in a footnote and in a plate (31, B/C). Thompson says she thinks they belong to Miletus but were probably minted under Demetrius Poliorcetes in the early 3rd century. I think this reasoning is based on the double-axe / bipennis as Demetrius used it frequently on his Alexander-type tetradrachms minted there, though Thompson also notes it was used on earlier coinage at this city dating from 323 BC forwards. Specficially, she says "The same symbol appears on the gold and on some bronzes of earlier date", so I'm curious exactly which bronze issues she has in mind here - possibly the Philip III apollo/horse units, which Price has dated to 323-319 BC. These she does include in her ADM publication so I'm sure it is these she is referring to.

Still, after a quick look around I can't see where Price is getting his 320 BC dating from, it's probably mentioned somewhere but the PDF copy I have is not searchable so I just checked the obvious places. I didn't see it come up in the hoards listed and I would expect a date range if it were dated to a hoard so perhaps something else has informed this type's dating. There certainly could be some new hoard evidence in the 30 years since Price's work that has helped date them.

Given what I've found so far, if I had to bet any amount of money on it, I'd say they're very likely to be posthumous.

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24 minutes ago, Kaleun96 said:

Sure, let's leave it there and call it a day, why bother trying 🤦‍♂️

For others interested, I checked Price's work and I can't find where he specifies the date for these types from Miletus. He cites the Caria hoard, but I believe that is just to reaffirm their belonging to Miletus, and he cites Thompson's ADM I, who mentions them in a footnote and in a plate (31, B/C). Thompson says she thinks they belong to Miletus but were probably minted under Demetrius Poliorcetes in the early 3rd century. I think this reasoning is based on the double-axe / bipennis as Demetrius used it frequently on his Alexander-type tetradrachms minted there, though Thompson also notes it was used on earlier coinage at this city dating from 323 BC forwards. Specficially, she says "The same symbol appears on the gold and on some bronzes of earlier date", so I'm curious exactly which bronze issues she has in mind here - possibly the Philip III apollo/horse units, which Price has dated to 323-319 BC. These she does include in her ADM publication so I'm sure it is these she is referring to.

Still, after a quick look around I can't see where Price is getting his 320 BC dating from, it's probably mentioned somewhere but the PDF copy I have is not searchable so I just checked the obvious places. I didn't see it come up in the hoards listed and I would expect a date range if it were dated to a hoard so perhaps something else has informed this type's dating. There certainly could be some new hoard evidence in the 30 years since Price's work that has helped date them.

Given what I've found so far, if I had to bet any amount of money on it, I'd say they're very likely to be posthumous.

Interesting hypothesis. Though, I think she's wrong. The labrys on Demetrius Poliorketes are different than these.

Not the best example, but a rarity with only 1 or 2 examples on AC search (anyone see where the labrys are hiding? *hint, it's not under a bushel of hay)

3047102_1656681526.l-removebg-preview.png.928e834ce841132ce1341d7d5f6fbab0.png

Demetrios Poliorketes, 294-288 BC. Æ18 (4.47 gm). Macedonian shield with DHM monogram / Helmet, Labyrs or lagobolon at left in between Bushel and helmet. SNG.Cop.1227. VF, green black patina. Rare. 

Though his are mainly known for having his monogram. He and his father (in his father's name) did mint MSCs with the gorgon boss. The K is the deal breaker for me going with the type being Poliorketes. However, I'm often wrong. But do LOVE the open dialog on the subject. 

 

Edited by Ryro
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30 minutes ago, Ryro said:

Interesting hypothesis. Though, I think she's wrong. The labrys on Demetrius Poliorketes are different than these.

Not the best example, but a rarity with only 1 or 2 examples on AC search (anyone see where the labrys are hiding? *hint, it's not under a bushel of hay)

3047102_1656681526.l-removebg-preview.png.928e834ce841132ce1341d7d5f6fbab0.png

Demetrios Poliorketes, 294-288 BC. Æ18 (4.47 gm). Macedonian shield with DHM monogram / Helmet, Labyrs or lagobolon at left in between Bushel and helmet. SNG.Cop.1227. VF, green black patina. Rare. 

Though his are mainly known for having his monogram. He and his father (in his father's name) did mint MSCs with the gorgon boss. The K is the deal breaker for me going with the type being Poliorketes. However, I'm often wrong. But do LOVE the open dialog on the subject. 

 

Makes sense if he is known to mint the bronze units with his monogram. Do we have any guesses as to what the K might stand for? 

Something else Price said is worth mentioning; he said the AE units 2063-2068 closely parallel types 2114-2121 and "should belong to the same issues". These are the gold staters with bipennis symbol, which Thompson mentions as being one of the earlier types from Miletus with the bipennis symbol that predates Demetrios. Price seems to have dated these to 323-319 BC, which lines up with what you said earlier Ryro. Perhaps the 320 BC dating in PELLA is a mistake/lazy entry and these units should also be dated to 323-319 BC.

price.png.871cdc1111dd8f7161ec9b3665da8e81.png

Though if that's all the evidence we have for that dating, I don't find it terribly convincing on its own. That being said, Price seems to date all the other bronze issues from this mint to the same period but it would be too much of a rabbit hole for me to follow up on the evidence for the dating of those at this time.

The only bronze types with the Macedonian helmet reverse that were dated definitively to the lifetime period by Price are a few issues from Sardis, such as Price 2546. Interestingly, this is fairly similar to a type from Miletus, Price 2072. So I guess you could argue there is precedent for bronze units with this iconography dating to Alexander's lifetime and a connection between those units and the Miletus mint, a mere 100 miles away. There is still a bit of a jump from the iconography of this type to the types of Price 2065 etc but not such a big jump that one would need to presume a major external event such as Alexander's death having caused.

Edited by Kaleun96
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1 hour ago, Kaleun96 said:

Makes sense if he is known to mint the bronze units with his monogram. Do we have any guesses as to what the K might stand for? 

Though, I used to think it possibly meant, Kaunos, I mentioned it above, "The K to the lower right is most likely for Asandros.", and the description, "Struck under Asandros, circa 323-319 BC"

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40 minutes ago, Ryro said:

Though, I used to think it possibly meant, Kaunos, I mentioned it above, "The K to the lower right is most likely for Asandros.", and the description, "Struck under Asandros, circa 323-319 BC"

While I know there are exceptions, aren't letters in most cases somewhat arbitrary, or simply come from the mint official (whose name in most cases we've lost)? I agree with the attribution of Miletos+Asandros, but I'm not sure we can infer anything from the K. For all we know, the guy who minted it happened to love knishes.

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42 minutes ago, Ryro said:

Though, I used to think it possibly meant, Kaunos, I mentioned it above, "The K to the lower right is most likely for Asandros.", and the description, "Struck under Asandros, circa 323-319 BC"

Ah, that you did! Do you know what the thinking behind K being related to Asandros is? Is it that other types known to be struck during his satrapy also had a K monogram or is there some direct connection to Asandros himself?

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Thanks @Severus Alexander you know I LOVE EVERYTHING about this area of ancients🥳

Yeeeeah, I get being a young Numismatist being exciting. I started with American coins when I was a boy, and started with ancients around 35 (which around here still qualifies me as a YN.

But, as Sevy alluded to please respect others time. I was at work and you asked a question and I was busy, then minutes later you ask for help again. As well as respecting others time, patience padawan.

And a thanks wouldn't cost you a penny. You didn't even like my initial explanation that gives the best understanding that I have on a subject that I thinks kinda aight

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8 minutes ago, Kaleun96 said:

Ah, that you did! Do you know what the thinking behind K being related to Asandros is? Is it that other types known to be struck during his satrapy also had a K monogram or is there some direct connection to Asandros himself?

 @kirispupis has a great point. The K could stand for him being Kinky in bed.

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But my understanding is that the Asandros connection is due to find sites and other coins from within his time period. If site references, but after s long day of work and taking care of three little lunatics I've not the energy. Will try to later. 

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48 minutes ago, Severus Alexander said:

Good discussion, guys!

@Kosmas, please don't pm multiple people with the same question and also post your question to the board.  Our time is valuable.

Everyone, perhaps we need to give Kosmas some tips on board etiquette...

He also thinks alexander wasn’t Macedonian 😉…maybe a history lesson too? 

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18 minutes ago, TheTrachyEnjoyer said:

He also thinks alexander wasn’t Macedonian 😉…maybe a history lesson too? 

He was only half Macedonian. The boy had a mother who was from Epirus, creating the divide between boy and father. And her sister happened to be mother of one of the greatest generals of all time, Pyrrhus..

Who Nalgene to have some pretty dope coins himself:

16029536987605157954538919483773-removebg-preview.png.adb44a95606929daa27ffaa6a272bc0c.png2135475_1630245518.l-removebg-preview.png.388a0a3f851d6cce20b87c4dac5064f7.pngshare4938191895733806573.png.4a85e1df2eb183412a35ab271ef2bf60.pngScreenshot_20201221-121205_PicCollage-removebg-preview.png.0a20e4445f70c5de980460d8c93d72ea.png

There's more too...

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10 minutes ago, Ryro said:

He was only half Macedonian. The boy had a mother who was from Epirus, creating the divide between boy and father. And her sister happened to be mother of one of the greatest generals of all time, Pyrrhus

Who Nalgene to have some pretty dope coins himself:

16029536987605157954538919483773-removebg-preview.png.adb44a95606929daa27ffaa6a272bc0c.png2135475_1630245518.l-removebg-preview.png.388a0a3f851d6cce20b87c4dac5064f7.pngshare4938191895733806573.png.4a85e1df2eb183412a35ab271ef2bf60.pngScreenshot_20201221-121205_PicCollage-removebg-preview.png.0a20e4445f70c5de980460d8c93d72ea.png

There's more too...

28078DC4-B4CA-4BAC-91CF-24F0F3254E9F.jpeg.ce244753ac8a3aee3d659b89fbbad136.jpeg8DD56D9A-1B36-4C60-8632-8D67243C96D7.jpeg.abd349aeaa4732f07068f74d1e1bb246.jpeg

My old example, sold at CNG for a pretty penny

39B99B5C-7EFD-4786-AD81-7815A4CDE298.jpeg.b4e0cb8af675f355c5151eb867fab1fb.jpeg

Notice the eagle at the bottom right! I didn’t even realize until it was catalogued in the esale 😆 

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😍It's an owl and I LOVE this type, I had to look, I've both types, here's mine, but it's not nearly as lovely as yours nor your owl, it has a magnificent portrait of Herakles:

Screenshot_20201221-121121_PicCollage-removebg-preview.png.72e4a5b8178664b95aefce3935d1c6b7.png

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Posted · Supporter

If you are hell bent on a lifetime Alexander MSC I've one for sale from a massive lot of MSCs that I bought: https://www.ebay.com/itm/295124936487?mkcid=16&mkevt=1&mkrid=711-127632-2357-0&ssspo=_1v8MZbJQpa&sssrc=2349624&ssuid=_1v8MZbJQpa&var=&widget_ver=artemis&media=COPY

Note there is no BA. Alexander wasn't putting that he was King/basileus on bronze coins until, as late as, 325 BCE (despite having the other Greeks proclaim him a GOD much earlier. I, and most, believe these to be lifetime coins. 

And have others I haven't listed yet if you're interested?

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5 hours ago, TheTrachyEnjoyer said:

He also thinks alexander wasn’t Macedonian 😉…maybe a history lesson too? 

Do you really think that the Slavs that came 1000 years later have any relation with Alexander.  Makedonians are greek people that leave in makedonia . Even the word makedonia is greek . Alexander could participate in greek olympics , he wrote and speak greek , he had greek parents .... Somebody should go back to school but not in Skopje . A bunch of untold Slavs-Bulgarians that want to be descents of Alexander.  You don't even can read ancient coins or ancient tablets from the time of Alexander . Every university in the world says that Alexander is Greek ....

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