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

Elephants on Ancient Coins

Julius Caesar, Imperator and Dictator, October 49 - 15 March 44 B.C.

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This is a scarcer variety of the type with the elephants legs parallel and a human-like ear, attributed to Spain. The engravers were apparently unfamiliar with elephants.
RR84461. Silver denarius, BMCRR Gaul 27 (also with human-like ear), Russo RBW 1557 (same), RSC I 49, Sydenham 1006, Crawford 443/1, Sear CRI 9, SRCV I 1399, VF, light toning, some luster, slightly off center, edge crack, weight 3.950 g, maximum diameter 19.9 mm, die axis 315o, Spain, military mint, traveling with Caesar, 49 B.C.; obverse elephant walking right trampling on snake or carnyx (Celtic war trumpet), CAESAR below; reverse implements of the pontificate: culullus (cup) or simpulum (ladle), aspergillum (sprinkler), securis (sacrificial ax), and apex (priest's hat); $700.00 (623.00)


Philip I the Arab, February 244 - End of September 249 A.D.

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In April 248, Philip combined celebration of Rome's 1000th anniversary with the Ludi Saeculares. Festivities included spectacular games and theatrical presentations. In the Colosseum, more than 1,000 gladiators were killed along with hundreds of exotic animals including hippos, leopards, lions, giraffes, and one rhinoceros. At the same time, Philip elevated his son to the rank of co-Augustus. Undoubtedly the festivities included elephants, as advertised by this coin.
RS77602. Silver antoninianus, RSC IV 5, RIC IV 246A(a) (S) corr. (elephant right), Mazzini 5, Hunter III -, SRCV III -, Choice VF, well centered, porous, light scratches, weight 2.066 g, maximum diameter 22.0 mm, die axis 0o, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, 248 A.D.; obverse IMP M IVL PHILIPPVS AVG, radiate, draped, and cuirassed bust right, from front; reverse AETERNITAS AVGG, elephant walking left, ridden by mahout guiding it with rod and goad; scarce; $250.00 (222.50)


Seleukid Kingdom, Antiochus VI Dionysus, 144 - c. 142 B.C.

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After his father was deposed by Demetrius II, the general Diodotus Tryphon nominated Antiochus VI as king. He gained the allegiance of most of the Seleucid domain, including Judaea, but was actually only a puppet of the general. He died after "ruling" for two years. He was likely assassinated under orders from Tryphon, who then made himself king.
GY79685. Bronze serrated AE 22, Houghton-Lorber II 2006b, SNG Spaer 1771, Babelon 1009, Houghton CSE 248 ff. var. (control), SNG Cop 304 var. (same), HGC 9 143 (C-S), VF, nice portrait, green patina, obverse slightly off center, well-centered reverse, weight 8.067 g, maximum diameter 22.0 mm, die axis 45o, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, c. mid-143 - 142 B.C.; obverse radiate head of Antiochos VI right, wearing ivy wreath; reverse BAΣIΛEΩΣ ANTIOXOY, EΠIΦANOYΣ ∆IONYΣOY in ex, elephant walking left, holding torch in trunk, ΣTA above right, palm frond (control symbol) right; scarce; $185.00 (164.65)


Roman Republic, Anonymous (Elephant Head), 128 B.C.

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The elephant head recalls the victory of L. Caecilius Metellus over Hasdrubal at Panormus in 250 B.C. and the capture of Hasdrubal's elephants. The moneyer is perhaps L. Caecilius Metellus Diadematus, Consul 117 B.C., or L. Caecilius Metellus Delmaticus, Consul 119 B.C.
RR84586. Bronze semis, Crawford 262/2, Sydenham 497, BMCRE Rome 1048, SRCV I 880, VF, nice dark green patina with buff earthen highlighting, tight partially ragged flan, weight 7.242 g, maximum diameter 22.3 mm, die axis 90o, Rome mint, 128 B.C.; obverse laureate head of Saturn right, S (mark of value) behind; reverse galley prow right, elephant head wearing bell facing right above, S (mark of value) right, ROMA below; ex CNG (part of bulk lot), ex RBW Collection; rare; $120.00 (106.80)


Seleukid Kingdom, Antiochus VI Dionysus, 144 - c. 142 B.C.

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After his father was deposed by Demetrius II, the general Diodotus Tryphon nominated Antiochus VI as king. He gained the allegiance of most of the Seleucid domain, including Judaea, but was actually only a puppet of the general. He died after "ruling" for two years. He was likely assassinated under orders from Tryphon, who then made himself king.
SH90305. Bronze serrated AE 22, Houghton-Lorber II 2006c, SNG Spaer 1774, Houghton CSE 249, SNG Cop 304 var. (control), HGC 9 1043 (C-S), VF, weight 7.923 g, maximum diameter 22.3 mm, die axis 0o, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, c. mid-143 - 142 B.C.; obverse radiate head of Antiochos VI right, wearing ivy wreath; reverse BAΣIΛEΩΣ ANTIOXOY, EΠIΦANOYΣ ∆IONYΣOY in ex, elephant walking left holding torch in trunk, ΣTA above right, star (control symbol) right; ex Forum (2010); $110.00 (97.90)


Seleukid Kingdom, Antiochus VI Dionysus, 144 - c. 142 B.C.

Click for a larger photo
After his father was deposed by Demetrius II, the general Diodotus Tryphon nominated Antiochus VI as king. He gained the allegiance of most of the Seleucid domain, including Judaea, but was actually only a puppet of the general. He died after "ruling" for two years. He was likely assassinated under orders from Tryphon, who then made himself king.
GY74347. Bronze serrated AE 22, Houghton-Lorber II 2006a, SNG Spaer 1772, Houghton CSE 248, Babelon Rois 1007; SNG Cop 304 var. (star vice cornucopia), HGC 9 1043 (C-S), VF, weight 7.564 g, maximum diameter 21.9 mm, die axis 0o, Antioch (Antakya, Turkey) mint, c. mid-143 - 142 B.C.; obverse radiate head of Antiochos VI right, wreathed in ivy; reverse BAΣIΛEΩΣ ANTIOXOY / EΠIΦANOYΣ ∆IONYΣOY, elephant walking left holding torch in trunk, ΣTA above right, cornucopia (control symbol) right; ex David Surber collection; $55.00 (48.95)







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Catalog current as of Friday, February 24, 2017.
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Elephant