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Paeonian tetradrachm ! Paeonian warrior fighting with whom ?


Kosmas
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Paeonian warrior fighting with whom on this Paeonian tetradrachm ? Maybe a persian warrior or a makedonian hoplite ?

IMG_20220816_142241.jpg

EDIT The depiction on the reverse celebrates the brilliant victory that Ariston, a relative (most likely brother) of King Patraos, won over the Persian cavalry prefect Satropates in a reconnaissance battle before the battle of Gaugamela .

Edited by Kosmas
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5 hours ago, Kosmas said:

Paeonian warrior fighting with whom on this Paeonian tetradrachm ? Maybe a persian warrior or a makedonian hoplite ?

EDIT The depiction on the reverse celebrates the brilliant victory that Ariston, a relative (most likely brother) of King Patraos, won over the Persian cavalry prefect Satropates in a reconnaissance battle before the battle of Gaugamela .

For sure read through the write-up mentioned by Ursus, but in short it's been strongly proven that the warrior on horse is not Ariston. On some versions of the coin, the soldier being trampled clearly has a Macedonian shield...

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38 minutes ago, kirispupis said:

For sure read through the write-up mentioned by Ursus, but in short it's been strongly proven that the warrior on horse is not Ariston. On some versions of the coin, the soldier being trampled clearly has a Macedonian shield...

Correct. This is an instance where a scholar (Gaebler) posited an interpretation that seemed reasonable to him, and that interpretation got repeated over time until it was assumed to be a fact. (It is still often repeated.) The empirical evidence, however, does not support the theory. In Gaebler's defense, however, he did not have many examples of the type to examine. The coins were quite rare until the discovery of the Paeonian Hoard. The vast majority of the extant coins clearly show the footman carrying a Macedonian shield. Read the above-linked article at CoinTalk for a thorough explanation from Sulla80.

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That was an instant-classic thread on the Paeonians, thanks for the reminder! (I've added it to my notes.) It's quite fascinating and thought-provoking, the apparent choice of fallen Macedonian soldier.

About that thread, I also loved the inclusion of correspondence and the literature, including Sotheby's Paeonian hoard (part I) in 1969 (a catalog I don't yet have).

Here's my copy of the second part, with my annotations below (from my catalog collection page

mL1afp4.jpg

Paeonia Hoard IIParke-Bernet Sale 2951, 9 Dec 1969, "The Extremely Important Greek Hoard (Being Coins in Gold and Silver of Northern Macedonia)," 278 Total Lots (incl. groups), weights given (0.01g) only for single-lots (die matches also seem to be noted), ~122 coins illustrated. 24 pp. + several pp. front mater incl. 2 pp. preface & Biblio + several pp. back matter + 8 Pl. 
[Clain-Stefanelli 2362; Spring 503; Daehn 3271; Gengerke p. 193]. 
Prov: Acq. from Bryce Brown. Original PRL laid in. Hand priced in margins (red ink).
Notes: Coins from Paeonia 1968 Hoard (IGCH 410; CH I, 40), preceded by Paeonia Hoard I (Clain-Stefanelli 2363; Spring 833; Daehn 3293).

 

And my Tetradrachm. My understanding is that most of these come from the hoard, and one of the two 1969 catalogs, but the vast majority were not illustrated or described with weights. I haven't checked the Sotheby's catalog yet, but I doubt mine is nice enough or from a scarce enough die to merit a single-lot and/or illustration. Still, these are really neat coins and I enjoy having one:

image.jpeg.0e6b1e0bf8f1074f77e63be44da0e1d7.jpeg

Greek (Late Classical/Early Hellenistic). Paeonian Kings, Patraos AR Tetradrachm (12.45g, 22mm, 12h). Paeonia, Astibos or Damastion mint, struck c. 340 - 315 BCE.
Obverse: Laureate head of youthful Apollo facing r.

Reverse: ΠATPAOY. Horseman right, spearing fallen enemy. M above.
Refereces: Paeonian Hoard I, 198 (same dies), 188 (obv die); HGC 3.1, 148. cf. SNG ANS 1032 (obv die; diff rev symbol); AMNG III/2, 4 var. (no M). See also CT 392714 (3 Feb 2022).
Provenance: Ex-Auctiones GmbH Auction 34 (Online, 22 Feb 2015), Lot 17. (Auctiones sold several dozen of these in a short period, concentrated on 2014-2015, so probably deriving from a few group lots in Paeonia Hoard I / II [weren't many unsold]; might be possible to identify some of them in catalogs.)

Notes: Flan defect, center obv., slightly misshapen flan. Characteristically lower quality production compared to the Macedonians, to whom they paid tribute. Lightly toned. Depicts Paeonian cavalry who became an important part of the Macedonian Empire's military machine. The great mystery of these coins is why some of the fallen soldiers distinctly appear to be Macedonian. Is there some kind of rebellion against their overlords happening? Did the Macedonians take this coinage as an insult? WTH. For additional context, see CoinTalk thread by @Sulla80 & Jon Anthony = @JAZ Numismatics, "A CT Collaboration: Paeonians & Celts," [CT 392714 (3 Feb 2022)].

 

See also: Wright 2012 = NICHOLAS L. WRIGHT. 2012. “The Horseman and the Warrior: Paionia and Macedonia in the Fourth Century BC.” Numismatic Chronicle Vol. 172, pp. 1-26. [Available on JSTOR or on NW's Academia page.]

  • Since Hugo Gaebler (1935) – later popularised by Irwin Merker (1965) – the typical interpretation is that the scene commemorates the famous event (preserved by Roman historian Quintus Curtius Rufus, and later Plutarch) when Alexander III’s forces were attacked by Persian cavalry under Satropates upon crossing the Tigris, and Paeonian commander Ariston and his cavalry charged, finally decapitating the Persian commander and presenting the head to Alexander. Gaebler and Merker believed it depicts Ariston on horseback and Satropates fallen, wearing Persian garb.
  • Wright disagrees. Macedonian clothing is described for some of the fallen soldiers, as are various other enemies, including northern / western European barbarians, including perhaps Gauls.
  • Provenance. Page 10: The vast majority of examples with known provenance come from two (or three) hoards (with a few strays finds or single examples in others):
  • the (Rážinci) Razinci Hoard, 1961 (IGCH 411, Bulgaria; Gerasimov, BIAB 26 (1963), p. 264), which included 1,208 examples;
  • the Paeonia Hoard, 1968 (IGCH 410) in either FYROM ("the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia" (FYROM)) or Bulgaria, which included “perhaps 1,700-1,800 examples” of this type (not fully illustrated, but with some repetition of examples between the Sotheby’s and Parke-Bernet sales);
  • It is so far unclear to me if any of the IGCH 411 examples (Razinci, 1961) were dispersed in the market; none are immediately apparent;
  • A third hoard was mentioned in Merker [but not mentioned here in Wright's article] of a hoard of “Paionian coins with over 1,000 coins… found in the 19th century, has been dispersed without any adequate record.”
Edited by Curtis JJ
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2 hours ago, JAZ Numismatics said:

Correct. This is an instance where a scholar (Gaebler) posited an interpretation that seemed reasonable to him, and that interpretation got repeated over time until it was assumed to be a fact. (It is still often repeated.) The empirical evidence, however, does not support the theory. In Gaebler's defense, however, he did not have many examples of the type to examine. The coins were quite rare until the discovery of the Paeonian Hoard. The vast majority of the extant coins clearly show the footman carrying a Macedonian shield. Read the above-linked article at CoinTalk for a thorough explanation from Sulla80.

Do you think that some of them will be auctioned soon ?

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18 minutes ago, Kosmas said:

Do you think that some of them will be auctioned soon ?

They already were -- about 53 years ago (which definitely still counts as "recent"). My comment above shows one of the auctions of those coins in 1969 (at Parke-Bernet in NYC). The CT link goes to a post that also shows the catalog for the other auction (in London, 1969, Sotheby's).

Edited by Curtis JJ
+ cointalk link (also in comments above)
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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, kirispupis said:

For sure read through the write-up mentioned by Ursus, but in short it's been strongly proven that the warrior on horse is not Ariston. On some versions of the coin, the soldier being trampled clearly has a Macedonian shield...

I fully understand what you are telling me . But I also found this on CT from a Makedonian Tomb in Pella :194843B6-0F7E-4E18-B7D6-CE8F54B49153.jpeg.9a714066708c761200f69324a21e2ac8.jpeg

The similarities are ridiculously clear . 

Edited by Kosmas
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23 minutes ago, Kosmas said:

I fully understand what you are telling me . But I also found this on CT :

The image you mention was painted about 60 years after the coin mentioned and is of a Macedonian cavalryman attacking a Persian. If you read the article already mentioned, or the referenced article below, you'll clearly see that Patraos' coin depicts a Paeonian trampling over a Macedonian.

I'm sure 2300 years from now American and Russian soldiers will look the same too...

WRIGHT, NICHOLAS L. “The Horseman and the Warrior: Paionia and Macedonia in the Fourth Century BC.” The Numismatic Chronicle (1966-), vol. 172, 2012, pp. 1–26. JSTOR, http://www.jstor.org/stable/42678926. Accessed 16 Aug. 2022.
 
FWIW, here's my copy of Patraos.
 
patraos.jpg.0ba448c7204baf0ff339f8965a8e6b62.jpg
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1 hour ago, kirispupis said:

The image you mention was painted about 60 years after the coin mentioned and is of a Macedonian cavalryman attacking a Persian. If you read the article already mentioned, or the referenced article below, you'll clearly see that Patraos' coin depicts a Paeonian trampling over a Macedonian.

I'm sure 2300 years from now American and Russian soldiers will look the same too...

WRIGHT, NICHOLAS L. “The Horseman and the Warrior: Paionia and Macedonia in the Fourth Century BC.” The Numismatic Chronicle (1966-), vol. 172, 2012, pp. 1–26. JSTOR, http://www.jstor.org/stable/42678926. Accessed 16 Aug. 2022.
 
FWIW, here's my copy of Patraos.
 
patraos.jpg.0ba448c7204baf0ff339f8965a8e6b62.jpg

I found this example with this shirtless warrior , wearing trousers so he is definitely not Greek or Macedonian but with a Makedonian shield . This type is very confusing ... 😵 . Maybe Paeonians made some different types of warriors from different ethnicities 🤷🏻‍♂️ .

E38B6ADC-D8BD-43DC-B23C-E890CC9839C3.jpeg

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Posted (edited)

 

1 hour ago, kirispupis said:

The image you mention was painted about 60 years after the coin mentioned and is of a Macedonian cavalryman attacking a Persian. If you read the article already mentioned, or the referenced article below, you'll clearly see that Patraos' coin depicts a Paeonian trampling over a Macedonian.

I'm sure 2300 years from now American and Russian soldiers will look the same too...

WRIGHT, NICHOLAS L. “The Horseman and the Warrior: Paionia and Macedonia in the Fourth Century BC.” The Numismatic Chronicle (1966-), vol. 172, 2012, pp. 1–26. JSTOR, http://www.jstor.org/stable/42678926. Accessed 16 Aug. 2022.
 
FWIW, here's my copy of Patraos.
 
patraos.jpg.0ba448c7204baf0ff339f8965a8e6b62.jpg

I also found a persian cap similar with kausia called "kyrbasia"

1cef96_95792cef68a140bcb3bb48b9839e1eac_mv2.jpg

IMG_20220817_021320.jpg

IMG_20220817_021331.jpg

Edited by Kosmas
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1 hour ago, Curtis JJ said:

I think we have an obverse die match! (Mine above. Definitely different reverses.)

That's pretty cool. I believe you're right. I wonder of both coins came from the same hoard...

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16 hours ago, kirispupis said:

That's pretty cool. I believe you're right. I wonder of both coins came from the same hoard...

It's definitely possible. Depending on whether the toning looks that dark in hand, though, yours might be consistent with the rumored earlier 19th century hoard of these. It's often said that most of the ones on the market come from the 1969 sales (sounds like there were at least 1,700-1,800 of these tetradrachms when you add up the group lots).

That hoard was: the Paeonia Hoard, 1968 (IGCH 410). I've never found out the disposition of the the (Rážinci) Razinci Hoard, 1961 (IGCH 411, Bulgaria; Gerasimov, BIAB 26 (1963), p. 264), which included 1,208 examples, but it may have gone to museums.

If yours is darkly toned, it might be this one, mentioned in Merker (1965), but not in Wright (2012):  a hoard of “Paionian coins with over 1,000 coins… found in the 19th century, has been dispersed without any adequate record.” 

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30 minutes ago, Curtis JJ said:

It's definitely possible. Depending on whether the toning looks that dark in hand, though, yours might be consistent with the rumored earlier 19th century hoard of these. It's often said that most of the ones on the market come from the 1969 sales (sounds like there were at least 1,700-1,800 of these tetradrachms when you add up the group lots).

That hoard was: the Paeonia Hoard, 1968 (IGCH 410). I've never found out the disposition of the the (Rážinci) Razinci Hoard, 1961 (IGCH 411, Bulgaria; Gerasimov, BIAB 26 (1963), p. 264), which included 1,208 examples, but it may have gone to museums.

If yours is darkly toned, it might be this one, mentioned in Merker (1965), but not in Wright (2012):  a hoard of “Paionian coins with over 1,000 coins… found in the 19th century, has been dispersed without any adequate record.” 

Interesting, but mine is lightly toned. The Roma description had "pleasant light cabinet tone." Personally, I would never put it on my kitchen cabinets, but it isn't dark.

In terms of provenance, all I have is "from a private European collection."

Based on how often these coins show up at auction, it certainly seems that there are a lot going around. 

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Curtis JJ said:

It's definitely possible. Depending on whether the toning looks that dark in hand, though, yours might be consistent with the rumored earlier 19th century hoard of these. It's often said that most of the ones on the market come from the 1969 sales (sounds like there were at least 1,700-1,800 of these tetradrachms when you add up the group lots).

That hoard was: the Paeonia Hoard, 1968 (IGCH 410). I've never found out the disposition of the the (Rážinci) Razinci Hoard, 1961 (IGCH 411, Bulgaria; Gerasimov, BIAB 26 (1963), p. 264), which included 1,208 examples, but it may have gone to museums.

If yours is darkly toned, it might be this one, mentioned in Merker (1965), but not in Wright (2012):  a hoard of “Paionian coins with over 1,000 coins… found in the 19th century, has been dispersed without any adequate record.” 

@Curtis JJ  What do you think about the warrior ? Do you agree with the kyrbasia cap that I posted ? Maybe different warrior ethnicities ? What do you think ? Do you agree with my latest post ?

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9 hours ago, Kosmas said:

@Curtis JJ  What do you think about the warrior ? Do you agree with the kyrbasia cap that I posted ? Maybe different warrior ethnicities ? What do you think ? Do you agree with my latest post ?

Last time I took notes on the published literature (Wright 2012 vs. Gaebler 1935, Merker 1965) my conclusion was that Wright (2012) and @JAZ Numismatics and @kirispupis are right that most of these are depicting Macedonian foot soldiers, and possibly on some reverse dies a smaller number of "various other enemies, including northern / western European barbarians, including perhaps Gauls."

I'm not saying the "Macedonian Hypothesis"  (and their European friends/auxiliary forces) is 100% certain or that it can't be wrong. It's still just a hypothesis (but a strong one with good supporting evidence). But I haven't seen anything that would change my view.

I've never felt there was much evidence for the "Persian Hypothesis" -- that Persian soldiers are being depicted.

I don't think the images of the kyrbasia cap are persuasive because many different ancient cultures had headwear that would appear similar, especially on the tiny canvas of a coin.

The same issue is a constant problem when I'm researching one of my favorite collecting topics, "Barbarians, Captives, and Enemies" on Roman coins. The Romans also tried to depict certain ethnic groups with details of clothing and headwear. But it can be exceedingly difficult to differentiate between, say, a "Phrygian Cap," "Parthian cap," "Dacian cap," a "Pileus," "Bashlyk," "Kyrbasia," or a dozen other types.

Honestly, the very first coin shown, the soldier's hat looks more like a "Petasos" to me [EDIT: Or as pointed out by DLT below, it actually looks much more like a Kausia] which was used in Thessaly, Macedon, Thrace, and among the Etruscans (Italy) and many other European cultures. But, again, it could be depicting many other varieties:

[NOT MY COINS]

MACEDONIAN COIN, PETASOS  ... And the OP Paeonian Tetradrachm (possibly showing a fallen Macedonian soldier) and another from the same Museum (link at end). Both of them  [The fallen soldier] also appears to be holding Macedonian shield. [Both photos are same coin]

9168591.m.jpg image.png.d91c24d402f7fb8c912e5b1706d36b3d.png image.png.362c1b43db322e8834d5378e8b72eeeb.png

 

It seems like you're very invested in the Persian interpretation, which is people believed in 50 or 80 years ago. If you think there's more recent research to support the Persian theory, please share it, as I'd be interested to see.

But you should read the article by Wright (2012, linked below and above). See if his evidence changes your mind, or if you can explain why he is wrong. (It is free on JSTOR or on the author's Academia.edu page; you might have to sign up for a free account with your email if you don't already have access).

At a minimum you should review the CoinTalk post that everyone keeps mentioning, and explain why you think their interpretation is wrong.

To argue that the prevailing opinion of the experts is wrong, you really need to directly respond to what they say, and explain why it may be wrong or why you would reinterpret the evidence. Or, if you think there is other research showing it's a Persian, and that we're unaware of it, you should find and share those sources. It's not impossible that such research exists.

 

Note: The OP coin (very first photo/post) is in the collection of the Altes Museum Belin, of the Staatliche Museen Berlin (SMB), and illustrated on Wikipedia under CC-Attribution license.
https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Peonia,_patraos,_tetradracma,_335-315_ac_ca.JPG
I couldn't find the coin in a quick search of SMB but found a few others, including one with a similar depiction of the fallen soldier: Edit: Same coin, I just got confused by the obverse display on the first photo, forgot that those were two different coins (obv & rev photographed at once)!

[NOT MY COIN!]

5502480_1200x630.jpg

 

https://recherche.smb.museum/detail/2364092/

Edited by Curtis JJ
Etruscans
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I would classify the foot-soldier's hat on the op as a kausia rather than a petasos. The primary difference is that the petasos has a broad floppy brim like a modern sun hat. The kausia is a flattened cap, similar to a modern beret or Afghan pakol and, for the period, distinctly Macedonian. 

The Persian kyrbasia mentioned above is a conical hood, similar to the Parthian bashlyk. The cone may be flattened, as in the images, but it is also a hood covering the ears and wrapping around the neck.

Aside from headgear, if the figure were intended as a Persian, he would surely be wearing trousers.

As someone suggested previously, it is entirely possible that the foe depicted might be sometimes Macedonian, sometimes Persian, depending on the propaganda need of the day.

As a  comparison, consider the Roman 'fallen horseman' series. The horseman is sometimes unmistakably Persian and other times markedly German.

Edited by DLTcoins
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5 hours ago, DLTcoins said:

 

As someone suggested previously, it is entirely possible that the foe depicted might be sometimes Macedonian, sometimes Persian, depending on the propaganda need of the day.

 

Yes ! Exactly what I said . I think that the ethnicity of the warrior is changing depending on the enemy they had that period . For that reason some coins are earlier than others .

Look at the differences of the warriors .

IMG_20220818_100206.jpg

IMG_20220818_100238.jpg

IMG_20220818_101211.jpg

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Posted (edited)

@DLTcoins Some of this coins are depicting a paeonian vs persian warrior fight referring to battle of Gaugamela . The coins with the persian warrior is most likely the first coins of this series . Afterwards the made coins fighting with others like maybe Makedonians .

This one should be the persian one :IMG_20220818_100206.jpg.844bcb006622c21783cebfcd735b2e51.jpg

Edited by Kosmas
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2 hours ago, Kosmas said:

@DLTcoins Some of this coins are depicting a paeonian vs persian warrior fight referring to batrle of Gaugamela . The coins with the persian warrior is most likely the first coins if this series . Afterwards the made coins fighting with others like maybe Makedonia .

@Kosmas please provide specific citations of others who agree with this statement, as everyone else on this thread and the entire numismatic community disagree with your statement. Statements like this require a thorough knowledge of the history of the period, and there are individuals who spend their lives pursuing such matters. For these reasons we prefer to cite them - such as Wright - rather than make things up based on how we feel.

A few excepts from him on the matter.

Despite the clever correlation between the exploits of Ariston and Patraos’horseman and warrior coin type, there are no definite examples of ancient Greek coinage which illustrate actual historical events in narrative form.

The claim that ‘... the man on foot is wearing the nationalcostume of the Persians ...’ is simply not justified.

The horseman is never depicted wearing trousers, the truest mark of  barbarism from which even Alexander abstained.

If you are so adamant that the current numismatic conclusions on this subject are false, then I suggest you read through Wright's paper and find specific statements that are at fault, then provide your reasoning based on the work of other scholars and works that he may have missed.

Such practices are the primary difference between a numismatic debate and simple trolling.

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