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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Themes & Provenance ▸ Types ▸ FlowersView Options:  |  |  | 

Flowers on Ancient Coins

Rhodos, Carian Islands, c. 205 - 190 B.C., Civic Coinage in the Name of Alexander the Great

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Rhodes is the largest of the Dodecanese islands of Greece and the principal town of the island is also named Rhodes. The city of Rhodes had 50,636 inhabitants in 2011. It is located northeast of Crete, southeast of Athens and just off the Anatolian coast of Turkey. Rhodes' nickname is The island of the Knights, named after the Knights of Saint John of Jerusalem, who once conquered it. Historically, Rhodes is famous for the Colossus of Rhodes, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, a giant bronze statue once standing at the harbor. It was completed in 280 B.C. and destroyed in an earthquake in 224 B.C. No trace of the statue remains today. Historical sites on the island of Rhodes include the Acropolis of Lindos, the Acropolis of Rhodes with the Temple of Pythian Apollo and an ancient theater and stadium, ancient Ialysos, ancient Kamiros, the Governor's Palace, Rhodes Old Town (walled medieval city), the Palace of the Grand Masters, Kahal Shalom Synagogue in the Jewish Quarter, the Archeological Museum, the ruins of the castle of Monolithos, the castle of Kritinia, St. Catherine Hospice and Rhodes Footbridge.
GS87644. Silver tetradrachm, HGC 6 1455 (S); cf. Price 2520 ff. (various magistrates), Muller Alexander 1162 ff. (same), VF/F, well centered, choice obverse, reverse rough with burnished area, scratches and marks, slight double strike, weight 15.795 g, maximum diameter 29.5 mm, die axis 0o, Rhodos (Rhodes, Greece) mint, c. 205 - c. 190 B.C.; obverse head of Herakles right, wearing Nemean Lion skin, scalp over head, forepaws tied at neck; reverse Zeus seated left on throne, nude to the waist, himation around hips and legs, right leg drawn back, eagle in extended right hand, long scepter vertical behind in left hand, AΛEΞAN∆POY downward on right, magistrate's name under arm and over rose left, PO (Rhodos) under throne; scarce; $340.00 (289.00)


Ptolemaic Kingdom, Glass Floral Inlay Fragment, 3rd - 1st Century B.C.

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From the collection of Alex G. Malloy, former dealer in antiquities for 40 years. Ex Robert Haas collection.
AA32380. Floral inlay glass fragment, cf. National Museums Scotland 492 - 493, 1.9 cm (3/4"), partial flower with three white pedals and center of yellow and clear dots, black background; rare; $270.00 (229.50)


Rhodos, Caria, c. 1 - 25 A.D.

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Although the radiate heads on coins of Rhodes are usually Helios, the wreath of ivy indicates this is Dionysos. Teimostratos was the first official named on the bronze coinage struck at Rhodes after Actium. His title, Treasurer (TAMIA), is unusual. The officials that followed at Rhodes were identified as Legate (EPI) in the inscriptions.
GB86523. Bronze drachm, RPC I 2748; SNG Keckman 759; SNG Cop 888; Ashton Early 107; Lindgren 700; BMC Caria p. 264, 377, F, broad flan, near black patina, earthen deposits, reverse double struck, porous, weight 25.209 g, maximum diameter 35.3 mm, die axis 0o, Rhodes mint, c. 1 - 25 A.D.; obverse radiate head of young Dionysos right, wearing ivy wreath; reverse Rose seen in profile, small bud on tendril on each side of stem, poppy to left of stem, stalk of grain to right of stem, PO∆IΩN (Rhodos) above, TA-MIA / TEI-MO/CTP-ATOY (treasurer Teimostratos) in three lines divided across field; from the David Cannon Collection, ex Beast Coins; $200.00 (170.00)


Lampsacus, Mysia, 360 - 340 B.C.

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Recent hoard and coin finds prompted Ashton to reattribute this type to the Troad, probably Lampsakos (Ashton Memnon, NC 162 (2002), pp. 11-15). Ashton suggests ME refers to Memnon of Rhodes, that these coins were struck at Lampsakos when he controlled the city and similar coins inscribed EY and NI possibly refer to Memnon's subordinates. Memnon of Rhodes was a prominent Greek commander in the service of the Persian Achaemenid Empire. Related by marriage to the Persian aristocracy, he served the Persian king for most of his life. Memnon was arguably the toughest defender to challenge Alexander and was nearly successful in putting a halt to his advance.
GB86134. Bronze chalkous, Ashton Memnon 2 (A1/P2); Ashton Solar p. 30, 1; BMC Caria p. 221, 4; SNG Cop (Caria) 914; Waddington 2813; Trait II 1733, VF, green patina, tight flan, earthen deposits, areas of light corrosion, weight 0.708 g, maximum diameter 8.9 mm, die axis 180o, Lampsacus (near Lapseki, Turkey) mint, under Memnon of Rhodes, c. 360 - 340 B.C.; obverse radiate youthful head of Helios right; reverse rose in profile, M-E flanking low across field; very rare; $160.00 (136.00)


Lampsacus, Mysia, 360 - 340 B.C.

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Recent hoard and coin finds prompted Ashton to reattribute this type to the Troad, probably Lampsakos (Ashton Memnon, NC 162 (2002), pp. 11-15). Ashton suggests ME refers to Memnon of Rhodes, that these coins were struck at Lampsakos when he controlled the city and similar coins inscribed EY and NI possibly refer to Memnon's subordinates. Memnon of Rhodes was a prominent Greek commander in the service of the Persian Achaemenid Empire. Related by marriage to the Persian aristocracy, he served the Persian king for most of his life. Memnon was arguably the toughest defender to challenge Alexander and was nearly successful in putting a halt to his advance.
GB86133. Bronze chalkous, Ashton Memnon 10 (A2/P10); Ashton Solar p. 30, 1 ff.; SNG Cop (Caria) 914; Waddington 2813; BMC Caria p. 221, 4; Trait II 1733, VF, green patina, tight flan, earthen deposits, light corrosion, weight 0.658 g, maximum diameter 8.8 mm, die axis 180o, Lampsacus (near Lapseki, Turkey) mint, under Memnon of Rhodes, c. 360 - 340 B.C.; obverse radiate youthful head of Helios right; reverse rose in profile, M-E flanking low across field; very rare; $125.00 (106.25)


Rhodos, Caria, c. 229 - 205 B.C.

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Zeus is not a normal type for Rhodes but is the normal obverse for Ptolemaic Egypt. This coin honors Ptolemy III of Egypt for providing earthquake relief. In 229 B.C., a devastating earthquake knocked down the Colossus of Rhodes and destroyed the city. Ptolemy III promised the Rhodians 300 talents of silver, a million artabae of corn, ship-timber for 10 quinqueremes and 10 triremes, 1000 talents of bronze coinage, 180,000 pounds of tow (for ropes), 3000 pieces of sailcloth, 3000 talents (of copper?) for the repair of the Colossus, 100 master-builders with 350 workmen, and 14 talents yearly to pay their wages, plus 12,000 artabae of corn for their public games and sacrifices, and another 20,000 artabae for victualling 10 triremes. The greater part of these goods were delivered at once, as well as one-third of the money.
GB88083. Bronze tetrachalkon, Ashton NC 1986 33 (A15/P30), Ashton 234, SNG Cop 795, HGC 6 1469 (R1), SNG Keckman -, VF, dark green patina with red earthen highlighting, well centered on a compact flan, bumps and marks, corrosion, minor edge flaking, weight 5.904 g, maximum diameter 16.9 mm, die axis 0o, Rhodes mint, c. 229 - 205 B.C.; obverse laureate head of Zeus right; reverse rose, tendrils left and bud right, TE left, P - O flanking stem; rare; $125.00 (106.25)


Rhodos, Caria, c. 40 B.C. - 25 A.D.

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Helios is the god and personification of the Sun in Greek mythology. He is the son of the Titan Hyperion and the Titaness Theia (according to Hesiod), also known as Euryphaessa (in Homeric Hymn 31) and brother of the goddesses Selene, the moon, and Eos, the dawn. Helios was described as a handsome young man crowned with the shining aureole of the Sun, who drove the chariot of the sun across the sky each day to earth-circling Oceanus and through the world-ocean returned to the East at night. In the Homeric Hymn to Helios, Helios is said to drive a golden chariot drawn by steeds (HH 31.1415); and Pindar speaks of Helios's "fire-darting steeds" (Olympian Ode 7.71). Still later, the horses were given fire related names: Pyrois, Aeos, Aethon, and Phlegon. The equivalent of Helios in Roman mythology was Sol.
GB87753. Bronze AE 19, SNG Keckman 751; SNG Mnchen 673; SNG Cop 875; BMC Caria p. 263, 359; Weber III 6758; HGC 6 1470 (S), F, green patina, edge crack, weight 3.894 g, maximum diameter 18.9 mm, die axis 0o, Rhodos (Rhodes, Greece) mint, c. 40 B.C. - 25 A.D.; obverse radiate head of Helios right; reverse PO∆IWN, full blown open rose with four pedals, seen from above, term; scarce; $90.00 (76.50)


Titus, 24 June 79 - 13 September 81 A.D.

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Spes was the Roman personification of Hope. In art Spes is normally depicted carrying flowers or a cornucopia, but on coins she is almost invariably depicted holding a flower in her extended right hand, while the left is raising a fold of her dress. She was also named "ultima dea" - for Hope is the last resort of men. On this coin, the Caesar, Titus, the designated successor of the emperor, is identified as the hope for the future of the Roman people.
RB88238. Copper as, RIC II-1 Vespasian 1273, BMCRE II Vespasian 868, Cohen I 217, Lyon XX 123, BnF III Vespasian 877, Hunter I -, SRCV I -, F, nice portrait, well centered obverse, bumps and marks, porosity, weight 9.631 g, maximum diameter 28.2 mm, die axis 180o, Lugdunum (Lyon, France) mint, as caesar, 77 - 78 A.D.; obverse T CAES IMP AVG F TR P COS VI CENSOR, laureate head right, globe at point of neck; reverse Spes walking left, flower in right hand, raising fold of drapery with left hand, S - C (senatus consulto) across field; ex Moneta Numismatic Services; $90.00 (76.50)


Kyme, Aeolis, c. 350 - 250 B.C.

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Cyme, one of the oldest Aeolian cities, was probably a colony of Cyme in Euboea, though according to tradition it was founded by the Amazon Kyme. Its large capable port was a valuable maritime asset to the Persian Empire, contributing ships to Dareios in 512 B.C. and to Xerxes in 480 B.C. After the Battle of Salamis, the remnants of Xerxes' fleet wintered at Cyme. After Persia, Aeolis was held successively by the Macedonians, Seleucids, Pergamenes, Romans, Byzantine, and Ottomans.
GS88335. Silver hemiobol, SNG Cop 34; SNG Kayhan 91; BMC Troas p. 106, 15; cf. SNGvA 7692 (tetartemorion), aVF, toned, porous, weight 0.311 g, maximum diameter 7.35 mm, Kyme (near Nemrut Limani, Turkey) mint, c. 350 - 250 B.C.; obverse K-Y, forepart of horse right; reverse rosette of eight petals and central pellet; ex Forum 82412 (2009); $90.00 (76.50)


Ptolemaic Kingdom, Ptolemy V Epiphanes, 204 - 180 B.C.

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Cathy Lorber has reassigned this type (Svoronos 1636) to Ptolemy V Epiphanes in her article "The Lotus of Aphrodite on Ptolemaic Bronzes" in SNR 80 (2001), pp. 39-52, plates 4-6. The lotus is a symbol of Paphos.
GP88257. Bronze triobol, Svoronos 1636; Lorber Lotus, Series V.1; Noeske 298; Hosking 89; BMC Ptolemies p. 82, 26; Weiser -; SNG Cop -; Malter -, F, corrosion, pitting, edge chip on reverse, central cavities, weight 30.749 g, maximum diameter 37.0 mm, die axis 0o, Cyprus (Paphos?) mint, 204 - 180 B.C.; obverse diademed head of Zeus Ammon right; reverse ΠTOΛEMAIOY BAΣIΛEΩΣ (King Ptolemy), eagle standing left on thunderbolt, head left, wings closed, transverse scepter on right wing, lotus flower left; ex Ora Eads Collection; ex CNG Sale 41 (19 Mar 1997), lot 1035 (part of); big 37 mm bronze; scarce; $80.00 (68.00)







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Flowers