Ancient Gold Coins - Greek
THRACE, Kingdom of, Lysimachos, (323-281 B.C.), gold stater, (8.30 g), Kallatis mint, posthumous issue c.88-86 B.C., obv. diademed head of Alexander the Great to right, wearing horn of Ammon, rev. Athena enthroned to left, holding Nike and resting left arm on shield, transverse spear resting against right side to right, to right **BASILEWS*, to left **LUSIMAC[OU], monogram HPO below arm, **KLA* on throne, trident and monogram below in exergue, (cf.S.6813, M.266, SNG Cop.1089), Good very fine from worn dies. well centred on the obverse and virtually as struck and very rare.
This lot comes from an important hoard of Greek gold staters from the time of the Mithradatic War (88-86 B.C.). They were issued by Mithradates VI of Pontus who used the design of the issues of Lysimachos. These staters with the head of Alexander the Great linked him to Alexander, history's greatest conqueror. At the age of 18, Mithradates embarked on a career of conquest, bringing most of the lands around the Black Sea under his control. These policies bought him into conflict with Rome and he consequently tried to liberate the East from Rome, quickly defeated the local garrisons and massacred every Roman citizen in Asia (some 80,000 in one night). Athens welcomed him as a liberator. In 87 B.C. the Consul L. Sulla and five legions captured Athens and pursued Mithradates back to Asia Minor. Mithradates was fined 2000 talents (600,000 gold staters) and returned to Pontus. These gold staters were probably struck during his campaign in Thrace in late 88 to early 87 B.C., to pay his mercenary soldiers. Several cities struck these coins and this mint has similar monogram to that issued at Tomis (see Noble Sale 78, lot 4902). An alternative view suggests that these coins were issues of Brutus in the Civil war of 44-42 B.C. (this view was published in Celator January 2000 [pp. 22-24]).
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THRACE, Kingdom of, Lysimachos, (323-281 B.C.), gold stater, (8.30 g), Kallatis mint, posthumous issue c.88-86 ...