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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Greek Coins| ▸ |Geographic - All Periods| ▸ |Thrace & Moesia| ▸ |Celtic Tribes||View Options:  |  |  |   

Celtic Tribes in Thrace

Danubian Celts, West Noricum, Late 2nd - 1st Century B.C.

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SH21611. Silver tetradrachm, Kugelrelter type; Göbl Noricum DnT 8 (IId/8); Lanz 111; Dembski 783; Göbl OTA 560; De la Tour 9910; Allen-Nash 55; CCCBM I -, Choice EF, weight 11.829 g, maximum diameter 23.9 mm, die axis 0o, obverse wreathed, diademed, and beardless head left; reverse Celticized rider on horseback left, headdress decorated with three balls (kugeln); SOLD


Celts, Danube Region, Imitative of Philip II of Macedonia, Late 4th - Early 3rd Century B.C.

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Unpublished in the references and websites examined by Forum. The elegant style is very close to that of the original type. The primary indicator it is a Celtic imitative rather than a Macedonian Kingdom issue is the incomplete legend.
SH63525. Silver tetradrachm, Le Rider -, Göbl OTA -, Pink -, CCCBM -, SNG ANS -, cf. Lanz 357 ff. (incomplete legend varieties, none with bee), VF, well centered, high relief, weight 13.946 g, maximum diameter 25.1 mm, die axis 45o, tribal mint, late 4th - early 3rd century B.C.; obverse laureate head of Zeus right; reverse ΦIΛIΠ−Π, naked youth on horse pacing right holding palm frond, bee below horse's belly; SOLD


Celts, Boii in Bohemia, Devil, Mid 1st Century B.C.

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The Boii first appear in history in connection with the Gallic invasion of north Italy, 390 B.C., when they made the Etruscan city of Felsina their new capital, Bononia (Bologna). They were defeated by Rome at the Battle of Mutina in 193 and their territory became part of the Roman province of Cisalpine Gaul. According to Strabo, writing two centuries after the events, rather than being destroyed by the Romans like their Celtic neighbors, "the Boii were merely driven out of the regions they occupied; and after migrating to the regions round about the Ister, lived with the Taurisci, and carried on war against the Daci until they perished, tribe and all - and thus they left their country, which was a part of Illyria, to their neighbors as a pasture-ground for sheep." The new Boian capital was a fortified town on the site of modern Bratislava, Slovakia, which is where minted their silver coins. Around 60 B.C., a group of Boians joined the Helvetians' ill-fated attempt to conquer land in western Gaul and were defeated by Julius Caesar, along with their allies, in the battle of Bibracte. Caesar settled the remnants of that group in Gorgobina, from where they sent two thousand to Vercingetorix's aid at the battle of Alesia six years later. The eastern Boians on the Danube were incorporated into the Roman Empire in 8 A.D. Devil is presumably the name of a king.
SH56021. Silver tetradrachm, Lanz 76, Paulsen 782 ff., Forrer Keltische pl. XXXVIII, 550, De la Tour 10163, Allen-Nash -, F, weight 16.322 g, maximum diameter 25.9 mm, die axis 45o, Slovakia, Bratislava mint, obverse beardless male head right with short; reverse bear(?) walking right on ground line, DEVIL in exergue; scarce; SOLD


Eastern Celts, Audoleon Imitative, Honter type, 2nd Century B.C.

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CE40505. Silver tetradrachm, Lanz 690, Göbl OTA 381/8, gVF, weight 13.580 g, maximum diameter 24.3 mm, die axis 225o, obverse laureate head of Zeus right; reverse rider trotting right, MT above, ΛE in front, ∆ below, square countermark and test cut; SOLD


Celtic, Bastarnae(?), Imitative of Philip II of Macedonia, c. 200 - 50 B.C.

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The Bastarnae, an ancient tribe, probably of Germanic and Celtic origin, inhabited the region between the eastern Carpathian mountains and the Dnieper river (Moldova and south western Ukraine). A branch of the Bastarnae, called the Peucini by Greco-Roman writers, occupied the region north of the Danube river delta.

In 179 B.C. the Bastarnae crossed the Danube in massive force (probably c. 60,000 men, both cavalry and infantry, plus a wagon-train of women and children) at the invitation of their long-time ally, King Philip V of Macedon. Philip's loss to Rome in the Second Macedonian War had reduced him from a powerful monarch to a petty client-king with a much-reduced territory and a tiny army. His kingdom was devastated by incessant raiding by the Dardani, a warlike Thraco-Illyrian tribe on his northern border, which his treaty-limited army was too small to counter. The Bastarnae, with whom Philip had forged friendly relations in earlier times, agreed to crush the Dardani and to settle in Dardania (southern Kosovo), to ensure that the region was permanently subdued. After they were ambushed en route by Thracians, about half the Bastarnae returned home, leaving c. 30,000 to press on to Macedonia. Philip died before the Bastarnae arrived, but Philip's son and successor Perseus, deployed his guests in winter quarters in a valley in Dardania, presumably to a campaign against the Dardani the following summer. In the depths of winter the Dardani attacked. The Bastarnae beat off the attackers, chased them back to their chief town, and besieged them. It was a trap. A second force of Dardani ambushed from the rear. After losing all their baggage and supplies, the Bastarnae were forced to retreat home. Most perished as they crossed the frozen Danube on foot, falling through the ice.
CE48221. Silver tetradrachm, Apparently unpublished; tentatively attributed to the Bastarnae by Dr. Ilya Prokopov, VF, weight 12.752 g, maximum diameter 24.4 mm, die axis 225o, obverse bearded head of Zeus right; reverse horseman riding right, star before, symbols below; SOLD


Southern Danubian Celts, c. Late 4th - Early 3rd Century B.C.

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The earliest Celtic imitations of Philip II tetradrachms are very similar to the Macedonian originals. It isn't always completely clear if a coin is a Celtic imitative or an oddly engraved Macedonian original. Fairly quickly the imitative inscriptions were shortened and then blundered. Over time the head of Zeus was increasingly "Celticized" and eventually both the head of Zeus and the horseman devolved into barely recognizable abstract forms. This coin is similar to the original but, with a rather exotic head of Zeus, could never be confused with the Macedonian prototype.
SH66568. Silver tetradrachm, CCCBM I 7 var. (very similar obv, different rev symbols), Göbl OTA 18/2 var. (similar rev), Lanz 360 var. (similar rev), VF, weight 13.957 g, maximum diameter 25.3 mm, die axis 135o, tribal mint, c. late 4th - early 3rd century B.C.; obverse Celticized laureate head of Zeus right, dot border; reverse ΦIΛIΠ−Y, naked youth on horse pacing right holding palm frond, Λ over torch below, uncertain object (dolphin?) below raised foreleg, dot border; derived from the Macedonian Kingdom tetradrachms of Philip II; SOLD


Southern Danubian Celts, c. Late 4th Century B.C.

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The earliest Celtic imitations of Philip II tetradrachms are very similar to the Macedonian originals. It isn't always clear if a coin is Celtic, or an oddly engraved Macedonian original, especially when the inscription is complete. The head of Zeus on this coin is just odd enough to indicate this is a Celtic coin.
SH66570. Silver tetradrachm, Forrer Keltische pl. XXIX, 75; Göbl OTA.14/4; Lanz -; Pink -; Castelin Zürich -, VF, weight 14.148 g, maximum diameter 24.8 mm, die axis 180o, tribal mint, c. late 4th century B.C.; obverse Celticized laureate head of Zeus right, dot border; reverse ΦIΛIΠΠO−Y, naked youth on horse pacing right holding palm frond, Λ over torch below, YE monogram below raised foreleg, dot border; derived from the Macedonian Kingdom tetradrachms of Philip II; SOLD


Celts, Danube Region, Bronze Ring Money, c. 800 - 100 B.C.

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Ring money of bronze, of silver, and of gold was used by the Celts in trade from Ireland to the Danube region. The dating of Celtic ring money is uncertain. Some authorities date the use of ring money from as early as 800 B.C. and it may have been used as late as 100 B.C. Some believe the bronze rings are actually just strap fittings, not a trade currency. Bronze rings are, however, sometimes found in quite large hoards and, in Spain, they are sometimes found with silver bar and disk ingots, and with 2nd century B.C. denarii of the Roman Republic. Undoubtedly they were used as fittings but they were also undoubtedly used as a store of wealth and for trade.
SH54756. Bronze Ring Money, Victoor -, see Topalov Apollonia II p. 104 - 105 for similar type, Choice VF, weight 18.636 g, maximum diameter 33.4 mm, extremely rare and interesting piece; apparently unpublished; SOLD


Celts, Boii in Bohemia, Nonnos, Mid 1st Century B.C.

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The Boii first appear in history in connection with the Gallic invasion of north Italy, 390 B.C., when they made the Etruscan city of Felsina their new capital, Bononia (Bologna). They were defeated by Rome at the Battle of Mutina in 193 and their territory became part of the Roman province of Cisalpine Gaul. According to Strabo, writing two centuries after the events, rather than being destroyed by the Romans like their Celtic neighbors, "the Boii were merely driven out of the regions they occupied; and after migrating to the regions round about the Ister, lived with the Taurisci, and carried on war against the Daci until they perished, tribe and all - and thus they left their country, which was a part of Illyria, to their neighbors as a pasture-ground for sheep." The new Boian capital was a fortified town on the site of modern Bratislava, Slovakia, which is where minted their silver coins. Around 60 BC, a group of Boians joined the Helvetians' ill-fated attempt to conquer land in western Gaul and were defeated by Julius Caesar, along with their allies, in the battle of Bibracte. Caesar settled the remnants of that group in Gorgobina, from where they sent two thousand to Vercingetorix's aid at the battle of Alesia six years later. The eastern Boians on the Danube were incorporated into the Roman Empire in 8 A.D.

Nonnos is presumably the name of the King. The inscriptions on Boian coins are the earliest evidence of writing in Slovakia.
SH56009. Silver hexadrachm, Lanz 81, Paulsen 771 ff., De la Tour 10154, Forrer Keltische pl. XXXVIII, 551, aVF, weight 16.824 g, maximum diameter 29.1 mm, die axis 315o, Slovakia, Bratislava mint, obverse diademed beardless male head right, border of arcs and pellets; reverse horseman galloping right, sword in right, branch in right, NONNOS (NN ligate) between two horizontal lines below; SOLD


Celts, Danube Region, Imitative of Philip II of Macedonia, c. 4th - Early 3rd Century B.C.

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SH13548. Silver tetradrachm, SGCV I 203 var., Lanz -, VF, weight 13.521 g, maximum diameter 24.6 mm, die axis 180o, obverse laureate head of Zeus right; reverse naked youth on horse pacing right holding palm frond, no legend, wheel below, remnant of legend imitated under horse's head, dot border; SOLD




  




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REFERENCES|

Allen, D. Catalogue of Celtic Coins in the British Museum, Vol. 1: Silver Coins of the East Celts and Balkan Peoples. (London, 1987).
Burnett, A., M. Amandry, et al. Roman Provincial Coinage. (1992 - ).
Crawford, M. Roman Republican Coinage. (Cambridge, 1974).
Davis, P. "Dacian Imitations of Roman Republican Denarii" in Apvlvm Number XLIII/1. (2006).
Davis, P. Imitations of Roman Republican Denarii, website: http://rrimitations.ancients.info.
Dembski, G. Münzen der Kelten. Sammlungskataloge des Kunsthistorischen Museums. (Vienna, 1998).
Göbl, R. Ostkeltischer Typen Atlas. (Braunschweig, 1973).
Grueber, H. A. Coins of the Roman Republic in The British Museum. (London, 1910).
Kostial, M. Kelten im Osten. Gold und Silber der Kelten in Mittel und Osteuropa. Sammlung Lanz. (München, 1997).
Pick, B. Die antiken Münzen von Dacien und Moesien, Die antiken Münzen Nord-Griechenlands Vol. I/I. (Berlin, 1898).
Pink, K. Münzprägung der Ostkelten und Ihrer Nachbarn. (Harrassowitz, 1939).
Poole, R.S. ed. A Catalog of the Greek Coins in the British Museum, Thrace, etc. (London, 1877).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Denmark, The Royal Collection of Coins and Medals, Danish National Museum, Vol. 2: Macedonia and Thrace. (West Milford, NJ, 1982).
Varbanov, I. Greek Imperial Coins And Their Values, Volume III: Thrace (from Perinthus to Trajanopolis), Chersonesos Thraciae, Insula Thraciae, Macedonia. (Bourgas, 2007).

Catalog current as of Monday, December 9, 2019.
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Celts in Thrace