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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Greek Coins| ▸ |Geographic - All Periods| ▸ |Anatolia| ▸ |Bithynia||View Options:  |  |  |   

Bithynia

The kingdom of Bithynia held a considerable place among the minor monarchies of Anatolia. The coins of the Bithynian kings depict their regal portraits in a highly accomplished Hellenistic style. Nicomedes IV, the last king of Bithynia, was defeated by Mithridates VI of Pontus, and, after being restored to his throne by the Roman Senate, bequeathed his kingdom by will to the Roman Republic in 74 B.C. Under Rome, the boundaries of Bithynia frequently varied and it was sometimes united with Pontus. For securing communications with the eastern provinces, the monumental Bridge across the river Sangarius was constructed around 562 AD. Troops frequently wintered at Nicomedia. The most important cities were Nicomedia, founded by Nicomedes, and Nicaea. The two had a long rivalry with one another over which city held the rank of capital. At a much earlier period the Greeks had established on the coast the colonies of Cius (modern Gemlik); Chalcedon (modern Kadiköy), at the entrance of the Bosporus, nearly opposite Byzantium (modern Istanbul) and Heraclea Pontica (modern Karadeniz Eregli), on the Euxine, about 190 km east of the Bosporus.


Hadrian, 11 August 117 - 10 July 138 A.D., Nicomedia, Bithynia

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SH25882. Silver cistophoric tetradrachm, Metcalf Type B1, 3 (dies 2/3); BMCRE III 1099 note; RSC II 240b, VF, weight 10.410 g, maximum diameter 27.3 mm, die axis 180o, Nicomedia (Izmit, Turkey) mint, obverse IMP CAES TRA HADRIANO AVG P P, laureate bust right; reverse COM - BIT, octastyle temple on podium of three steps, ROM S P AVG in entablature in pediment; Forum purchased from Harlan Berk for $1680; SOLD


Herakleia Pontika, Bithynia, Tyrants Timotheus and Dionysios, 345 - 337 B.C.

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SH26918. Silver stater, BMC Pontus p. 142, 22, Dewing 2151, EF, weight 9.705 g, maximum diameter 23.5 mm, die axis 0o, Herakleia Pontika mint, 345 - 337 B.C.; obverse head of Dionysos left, wreathed with ivy, thyrsos behind; reverse TIMOΘEOY ∆IONYΣIOY, Herakles standing left, wearing lion-skin over left arm and sword in sheath, attaching spear and shield to a trophy of captured arms; ex E. J. Waddell, superb specimen; SOLD


Kingdom of Bithynia, Prusias II Kynegos, 185 - 149 B.C.

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Prusias II, son of Prusias I, inherited his father's name but not his character. Few mourned his death when he was murdered in the temple of Zeus at Nikomedia. -- Greek Coins and Their Values, by David R. Sear
SH14037. Silver tetradrachm, SGCV II 7265; BMC Pontus p. 210, 1v; SNGvA 252v (same obv die); Rec Gen II.3 221, 10b, nice VF, weight 16.431 g, maximum diameter 41.2 mm, die axis 0o, Nikomedia (Izmit, Turkey) mint, 185 - 149 B.C.; obverse head right wearing winged diadem; reverse BAΣIΛEΩΣ ΠPOYΣIOY (Π retrograde), Zeus standing left, scepter in left, crowning King's name with wreath in right hand, eagle left on thunderbolt over two monograms in inner left field; large flan; scarce; SOLD


Kingdom of Bithynia, Nikomedes II Epiphanes, 149 - 128 B.C.

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Nikomedes II accompanied his father, Prusias II, to Rome in 167 B.C., where he was brought up under the care of the Senate. His father, favoring a younger sibling for succession, decided to assassinate him. But Nikomedes discovered the plot, seized the throne and put his father to death. He remained faithful to Rome, assisting in the war with Attalus, king of Pergamus in 131 B.C.
SH14038. Silver tetradrachm, SGCV II 7273; BMC Pontus p. 213, 1; SNG Cop 646 var.; SNGvA 261 var.; Rec Gen II.3 pl. 32, 7, Choice EF, weight 16.631 g, maximum diameter 39.7 mm, die axis 0o, Nikomedia (Izmit, Turkey) mint, 149 - 148 B.C.; obverse diademed head right; reverse BAΣIΛEΩΣ EΠIΦANOYΣ NIKOMH∆OY, Zeus standing left, wreath in right hand, scepter in left, in inner left field eagle on thunderbolt over monogram and NP (year 150); huge broad flan; SOLD


Kingdom of Bithynia, Nikomedes II Epiphanes, 149 - 128 B.C.

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Nikomedes II accompanied his father, Prusias II, to Rome in 167 B.C., where he was brought up under the care of the Senate. His father, favoring a younger sibling for succession, decided to assassinate him. But Nikomedes discovered the plot, seized the throne and put his father to death. He remained faithful to Rome, assisting in the war with Attalus, king of Pergamus in 131 B.C.
SH10961. Silver tetradrachm, SGCV II 7273; SNGvA 261; Waddington I pl. 32, 8; BMC Pontus p. 213, 2 var.; SNG Cop 646 var., gVF, toned, weight 16.540 g, maximum diameter 37.4 mm, die axis 0o, Nikomedia (Izmit, Turkey) mint, 143 - 143 B.C.; obverse diademed head right; reverse BAΣIΛEΩΣ EΠIΦANOYΣ NIKOMH∆OY, Zeus standing left, wreath in right hand, scepter in left, in inner left field eagle on thunderbolt over monogram and NPC (year 156); ex Realms; SOLD


Kingdom of Bithynia, Prusias I Cholos, 228 - 185 B.C.

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Prusias I, son of Ziaelas, and grandson of Nikomedes I. The Bithynian Kingdom reached its zenith under his reign. He was an enlightened and courageous ruler who managed to maintain the prosperity of his realm at a time of great political turmoil in Asia Minor. -- Greek Coins and Their Values, by David R. Sear
SH14039. Silver tetradrachm, SGCV II 7259; BMC Pontus p. 209, 1; SNG Cop 623v; SNGvA 244v, nice VF, weight 16.740 g, maximum diameter 34.1 mm, die axis 0o, Nikomedia (Izmit, Turkey) mint, obverse his diademed head right with whiskers; reverse BAΣIΛEΩΣ ΠPOYΣIOY, Zeus standing left, scepter in left, crowning King's name with right, thunderbolt and monogram inner left field; exceptional figure of Zeus; SOLD


Kingdom of Bithynia, Nikomedes III Euergetes, 128 - 94 B.C.

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SH18346. Silver tetradrachm, Rec Gen II.3 p. 230, 4 var.; BMC Pontus -, SNGvA -, EF, uncleaned, dark toning, weight 16.688 g, maximum diameter 34.7 mm, die axis 0o, Nikomedia (Izmit, Turkey) mint, c. 122 - 121 B.C.; obverse diademed head right; reverse BAΣIΛEΩΣ EΠIΦANOYΣ NIKOMH∆OY, Zeus standing left, wreath in right hand, scepter in left, in inner left field eagle on thunderbolt over monogram and ZOP (year 177); SOLD


Kingdom of Bithynia, Nikomedes III Euergetes, 128 - 94 B.C.

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Nikomedes III aided Marius during the Cimbrian War, about 103 B.C. During the later part of his reign he struggled with Mithradates, King of Pontus, for control over Cappadocia. This led to Roman intervention and the Mithradatic War.
SH10959. Silver tetradrachm, SGCV II 7274; BMC Pontus p. 214, 12v; SNGvA 263v; SNG Cop 648v; De Callatay p. 56, D73/R1, VF, weight 16.21 g, maximum diameter 33.0 mm, die axis 0o, Nikomedia (Izmit, Turkey) mint, 112 - 111 B.C.; obverse diademed head right; reverse BAΣIΛEΩΣ EΠIΦANOYΣ NIKOMH∆OY, Zeus standing left, wreath in right hand, scepter in left, in inner left field eagle on thunderbolt over monogram and IΠP (year 187); SOLD


Kingdom of Bithynia, Nikomedes II Epiphanes, 149 - 128 B.C.

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Nikomedes II accompanied his father, Prusias II, to Rome in 167 B.C., where he was brought up under the care of the Senate. His father, favoring a younger sibling for succession, decided to assassinate him. But Nikomedes discovered the plot, seized the throne and put his father to death. He remained faithful to Rome, assisting in the war with Attalus, king of Pergamus in 131 B.C.
SH18363. Silver tetradrachm, Rec Gen II.3 p. 229, 1; BMC Pontus -, SNGvA -, Choice gVF+, weight 16.723 g, maximum diameter 39.5 mm, die axis 0o, Nikomedia (Izmit, Turkey) mint, c. 147 - 146 B.C.; obverse diademed head right; reverse BAΣIΛEΩΣ EΠIΦANOYΣ NIKOMH∆OY, Zeus standing left, wreath in right hand, scepter in left, in inner left field eagle on thunderbolt over monogram and BNP (year 152); dark toning; SOLD


Kingdom of Bithynia, Nicomedes IV Philopator, 94 - 74 B.C.

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In 88 B.C., Mithradates destroyed Nikomedes' army forcing him to flee to Italy. His throne was not restored until Rome defeated Mithradates in 84 B.C. Waddington, Recueil General, pp. 217-8, notes, "it is difficult to explain the very rare coins that bear the dates IC, AIC, BIC. These dates correspond to 89/8 to 87/6 BC..; but between mid-88 and the end of 83, the whole of Bithynia was in the hands of Mithradates Eupator. We are forced to conjecture (no text says so) that during this period several fortified places in Bithynia remained faithful to the legitimate king and continued to strike coins in his name."
SH14034. Silver tetradrachm, SGCV II 7276; BMC Pontus, p. 213, 6 var.; SNG Cop 651 var., SNGvA 266 var., aEF, weight 15.539 g, maximum diameter 36.1 mm, die axis 0o, Nikomedia (Izmit, Turkey) mint, 87 - 86 B.C.; obverse diademed head of Nicomedes right; reverse BAΣIΛEΩΣ EΠIΦANOYΣ NIKOMH∆OY, Zeus standing left, wreath in right hand, scepter in left, in inner left field eagle on thunderbolt over monogram and date BIΣ (year 212); very rare; SOLD




  




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REFERENCES|

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Catalog current as of Tuesday, November 19, 2019.
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Bithynia Coins