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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Themes & Provenance ▸ Animals ▸ LionView Options:  |  |  |   

Lions on Ancient Coins

Ephesos(?), Ionia, c. 610 - 575 B.C.

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This type is among the earliest of coins. The location of the mint is not certain but examples have been found at and near Ephesos.
SH89744. Electrum 1/24 stater, Rosen 284 (Asia Minor uncertain), SNG Kayhan 724 (Myletos?), Mitchiner ATEC 105 (Ephesos), Karwiese 68 ff. (same), Weidauer -, aVF, bumps and marks, weight 0.556 g, maximum diameter 5.8 mm, Ephesos(?) mint, c. 610- 575 B.C.; obverse crude lion's paw seen from above; reverse deep incuse square; very rare; $400.00 (352.00)


Kingdom of Thrace, Lysimachos, 305 - 281 B.C.

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Lysimachus, one of Alexander the Great's personal bodyguards, was appointed strategos (general) in Thrace and the Chersonesos after Alexander's death. He became one of the diadochi (successors of Alexander) who were initially generals and governors, but who continuously allied and warred with each other and eventually divided the empire. In 309, he founded his capital Lysimachia in a commanding situation on the neck connecting the Chersonesos with the mainland. In 306, he followed the example of Antigonus in taking the title of king, ruling Thrace, Asia Minor and Macedonia. In 281, he was killed in battle against Seleucus, another successor of Alexander.
SH88882. Silver drachm, Thompson 127, Price L27, Mller Alexander L21, HGC 3 1752e (R1), Choice VF, well centered, attractive toning, weight 3.377 g, maximum diameter 17.7 mm, die axis 0o, Kolophon (near Degirmendere Fev, Turkey) mint, 299 - 296 B.C.; obverse head of Herakles right, wearing Nemean Lion skin, scalp over head, forepaws tied at neck; reverse Zeus Atophoros seated left, eagle in right hand, scepter in left hand, right leg drawn back, lion-forepart left over Φ (control symbols) in left field, pentagram (control symbol) under throne, ΛYΛIMAXOY downward on left, BAΣIΛIΩΣ below; $200.00 (176.00)


Julia Domna, Augusta 194 - 8 April 217 A.D.

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Cybele was born a hermaphrodite, but castrated by the gods, she became female. Heeding the Sibylline oracle, the senate brought her worship to Rome in 204 B.C. as the first officially sanctioned Eastern cult. After approval, they were dismayed to learn that the priesthood required voluntary self-castration, which was abhorrent to the Romans. Romans were barred from entering the priesthood or even entering the priest's sanctuary. The eunuch priests, recruited from outside Rome, were confined to their sanctuary, leaving only to parade in the streets during festivals in April. Claudius removed the bans on Roman participation, making worship of Cybele and her consort Attis part of the state religion.
SL89816. Silver denarius, RIC IV S564; RSC III 123; BMCRE V p. 163, S51; Hunter III p. 42, S11; SRCV II 6593, NGC Ch AU, strike 4/5, surface 5/5 (2412811-051), weight 3.32 g, maximum diameter 18.1 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, c. 205 A.D.; obverse IVLIA AVGVSTA, draped bust right; reverse MATER DEVM (mother of the gods), Cybele seated left between two lions, wearing towered crown, branch in right hand, scepter in left hand, resting left arm on drum; from the Martineit Collection of Ancient and World Coins; scarce; $180.00 (158.40)


Chersonesos, Thrace, c. 400 - 338 B.C.

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Chersonesos is Greek for 'peninsula' and several cities used the name. The city in Thracian Chersonesos (the Gallipoli peninsula) that struck these coins is uncertain. The coins may have been struck at Cardia by the peninsula as a league, or perhaps they were struck by lost city on the peninsula named Chersonesos. Chersonesos was controlled by Athens from 560 B.C. to 338 B.C., aside from a brief period during this time when it was controlled by Persia. It was taken by Philip II of Macedonia in 338 B.C., Pergamon in 189 B.C., and Rome in 133 B.C. It was later ruled by the Byzantine Empire and then by the Ottoman Turks.
GS91065. Silver hemidrachm, McClean II 4093, SNG Berry 503, HGC 3.2 1437, SNG Cop -; BMC Thrace -, VF, obverse off center, weight 2.248 g, maximum diameter 12.6 mm, die axis 270o, Chersonesos (Sevastopol, Ukraine) mint, c. 400 - 338 B.C.; obverse lion forepart right, head turned back left, tongue protruding; reverse quadripartite incuse with alternating shallow and deeper sunken quarters, pellet over AΓ monogram in one sunken quarter, cicada in the opposite sunken quarter; rare; $140.00 (123.20)


Marion, Cyprus, Stasiakos II, c. 330 - 312 B.C.

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Stasiakos II, king of Marion, was deposed in 312 B.C. by Ptolemy I and the city of Marion was destroyed. This extremely rare type was apparently unpublished until 1998. Coin Archives lists only one sale of this type in the past two decades.
GB87141. Bronze AE 20, Destrooper 16; Bank of Cyprus 10; Symeonides 63 ff., cf. Tziambazis 57 (AE16, lion head facing), SNG Cop -, BMC Cyprus -, VF, rough, weight 7.634 g, maximum diameter 20.0 mm, Marion mint, c. 330 - 312 B.C.; obverse round shield ornamented with laurel wreath; reverse MAPIEYΣ (below), lion head left; extremely rare; $135.00 (118.80)


Amphipolis, Macedonia, 148 - 32 B.C.

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Amphipolis was a magnificent ancient Greek polis (city), and later a Roman city, whose impressive remains can still be seen. It is famous in history for events such as the battle between the Spartans and Athenians in 422 B.C., and also as the place where Alexander the Great prepared for campaigns leading to his invasion of Asia. Alexander's three finest admirals, Nearchus, Androsthenes and Laomedon, resided in this city and it is also the place where, after Alexander's death, his wife Roxane and their small son Alexander IV were exiled and later murdered. Excavations in and around the city have revealed important buildings, ancient walls and tombs. The finds are displayed at the archaeological museum of Amphipolis. At the nearby vast Kasta burial mound, an important ancient Macedonian tomb has recently been revealed. The unique and beautiful "Lion of Amphipolis" monument nearby is a popular destination for visitors.Lion_of_Amphipolis
GB88169. Bronze AE 17, Lindgren II 929, HGC 3.1 433 (R1), SNG ANS 120 - 122 var. (grain ear vice club, no monogram), SNG Cop -, SNG Dreer -, BMC Macedonia -, VF, green patina, tight flan, obverse off center, weight 3.930 g, maximum diameter 16.8 mm, die axis 0o, Amphipolis mint, Roman rule, 148 - 31 B.C.; obverse head of Herakles right clad in Nemean Lion's scalp headdress forelegs tied at neck; reverse AMΦIΠOΛITΩN, lion standing right, club below, monogram (magistrate or control symbol) lower right; ex Triskeles auction 26 (VAuction 334), lot 47; rare; $120.00 (105.60)


Rhegion, Bruttium, Italy, c. 415 - 387 B.C.

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Rhegion reached great artistic and cultural heights. It was home to academies, such as the Pythagorean School, and to well-known poets, historians and sculptors such Ibycus, Ippy, and Pythagoras. It was an important ally of the Roman Republic. Rhegium flourished during the Imperial Age but was devastated by several major earthquakes and tsunami. St. Paul passed through Rhegium on his final voyage to Rome (Acts XXVIII:13).
GS79976. Silver litra, SNG Cop 1936; SNG ANS 670; SNG Mnchen 1588; SNG Tb 536; HN Italy 2495; BMC Italy p. 376, 30, VF, well centered, nice style, uneven toning, light corrosion, weight 0.722 g, maximum diameter 10.2 mm, die axis 90o, Rhegion mint, c. 415 - 387 B.C.; obverse facing lion scalp mask; reverse olive sprig with two olives, PH between the leaves; $110.00 (96.80)


Leontini, Sicily, c. 476 - 466 B.C., Unofficial Imitative

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The low weight, crude style, and retrograde ethnic indicate this was not an official issue of the city but, more likely, an imitative. Hoover identifies it as an imitative in the Handbook of Coins of Sicily (HGC 2).
GS91173. Silver litra, cf. HGC 2 688 (R2) (same); BMC Sicily p. 88; 22 (same retrograde legend, 0.635g); Boehringer Leontini pl. 10, B (similarly crude), VF, well centered, crude style, half the usual weight, weight 0.289 g, maximum diameter 9.7 mm, die axis 330o, unofficial Sicilian mint, c. 476 - 466 B.C.; obverse crude facing lion scalp, linear border; reverse ΛE-ON (retrograde, counterclockwise from upper right), barley kernel, linear border; ex Beast Coins, ex Imperial Coins & Artifacts; very rare; $110.00 (96.80)


Chersonesos, Thrace, c. 400 - 338 B.C.

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Chersonesos is Greek for 'peninsula' and several cities used the name. The city in Thracian Chersonesos (the Gallipoli peninsula) that struck these coins is uncertain. The coins may have been struck at Cardia by the peninsula as a league, or perhaps they were struck by lost city on the peninsula named Chersonesos. Chersonesos was controlled by Athens from 560 B.C. to 338 B.C., aside from a brief period during this time when it was controlled by Persia. It was taken by Philip II of Macedonia in 338 B.C., Pergamon in 189 B.C., and Rome in 133 B.C. It was later ruled by the Byzantine Empire and then by the Ottoman Turks.
GS91067. Silver hemidrachm, McClean II 4056; BMC Thrace p. 183, 8; Dewing 1301; SNG Cop 824; Weber II -, aVF, tight flan, die wear, slightly rough, weight 2.131 g, maximum diameter 12.6 mm, Chersonesos (Sevastopol, Ukraine) mint, c. 400 - 338 B.C.; obverse lion forepart right, head turned back left, tongue protruding; reverse quadripartite incuse square with alternating shallow and deeper sunken quarters, pellet at the center of each of the two opposite deeper quarters; $100.00 (88.00)


Chersonesos, Thrace, c. 400 - 338 B.C.

Click for a larger photo
Chersonesos is Greek for 'peninsula' and several cities used the name. The city in Thracian Chersonesos (the Gallipoli peninsula) that struck these coins is uncertain. The coins may have been struck at Cardia by the peninsula as a league, or perhaps they were struck by lost city on the peninsula named Chersonesos. Chersonesos was controlled by Athens from 560 B.C. to 338 B.C., aside from a brief period during this time when it was controlled by Persia. It was taken by Philip II of Macedonia in 338 B.C., Pergamon in 189 B.C., and Rome in 133 B.C. It was later ruled by the Byzantine Empire and then by the Ottoman Turks.
GS91071. Silver hemidrachm, McClean II 4079; BMC Thrace p. 183, 11; SNG Ashmolean 3589; Weber 2419; SNG Cop -, VF, obverse crowded to right, some bumps and scratches, die wear, edge crack, weight 2.261 g, maximum diameter 12.9 mm, Chersonesos (Sevastopol, Ukraine) mint, c. 400 - 338 B.C.; obverse lion forepart right, head turned back left; reverse quadripartite incuse square with alternating shallow and deeper sunken quarters, pellet in one sunken quarter, bunch of grapes in the opposite sunken quarter; $100.00 (88.00)




  



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