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

Griffins on Ancient Coins

The griffin, griffon, or gryphon is a legendary creature with the body of a lion and the head and wings of an eagle. As the lion was traditionally considered the king of the beasts and the eagle was the king of the birds, the griffin was thought to be an especially powerful and majestic creature. Griffins are normally known for guarding treasure and well valued priceless possession.


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

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This is an Alexandrine type drachm, meaning it has the types of Alexander's drachms, Herakles and Zeus Aëtophoros. Thompson notes, "Teos, like Colophon, was a royal mint [for Lysimachos] for only a short time. Its scanty output of drachms falls in the period before Lysimachus began to issue money with his own types."
GS86508. Silver drachm, Price L38 corr. (control positions), Thompson 130 corr. (control positions), Müller 34 ff. var. (monogram), Müller Alexander -, SNG Cop -, gVF, toned, centered on a tight flan, light marks, weight 4.258 g, maximum diameter 18.2 mm, die axis 0o, Ionia, Teos (near Sigacik, Turkey) mint, lifetime issue, c. 301/299 - 297 B.C.; obverse head of Herakles right, clad in Nemean lion scalp headdress; reverse Zeus Aëtophoros seated left, right leg drawn back, nude to the waist, himation around hips and legs, eagle in extended right hand, long scepter vertical behind in left hand, griffin seated left above monogram (controls) in lower left field, ΛYΣIMAXOY (Lysimachos) downward on right, BAΣIΛEΩΣ (king) in exergue; from the David Cannon Collection, ex Beast Coins; very rare; $385.00 (€327.25)
 


Macedonian Kingdom, Antigonus I Monophthalmus, 323 - 301 B.C., In the Name of Alexander the Great

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Antigonos I Monophthalmos ("the One-eyed") (382 B.C. - 301 B.C.) was a nobleman, general, and governor under Alexander the Great. Upon Alexander's death in 323 B.C., he established himself as one of the successors and declared himself King in 306 B.C. The most powerful satraps of the empire, Cassander, Seleucus, Ptolemy, and Lysimachus, answered by also proclaiming themselves kings. Antigonus found himself at war with all four, largely because his territory shared borders with all of them. He died in battle at Ipsus in 301 B.C. Antigonus' kingdom was divided up, with Seleucus I Nicator gaining the most. His son, Demetrius I Poliorcetes, took Macedon, which the family held, off and on, until it was conquered by Rome in 168 B.C. -- Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
GS77605. Silver drachm, Price 1387, Müller Alexander 614, SNG Cop 888, SNG Alpha Bank 582, SNG Munchen 451, aVF, scratches and marks, porosity, weight 4.051 g, maximum diameter 17.0 mm, die axis 270o, Mysia, Lampsakos (Lapseki, Turkey) mint, 310 - 301 B.C.; obverse head of Herakles right, clad in Nemean Lion scalp headdress tied at neck; reverse AΛEΞAN∆POY, Zeus seated left on throne without back, nude to the waist, himation around hips and legs, eagle extended in right hand, long scepter vertical behind in left hand, right leg drawn back, Pegasos forepart left in left field, Artemis standing left holding torch under throne; $90.00 (€76.50)
 


Amphipolis, Macedonia, c. 168 - 31 B.C.

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In 168 B.C., the Romans invaded Macedonia and overthrew King Perseus in the First Battle of Pydna. In 149 B.C., Andriskos, at that time ruler of Adramyttium only, claiming to be Perseus' son, announced his intention to retake Macedonia from Rome. Andriskos traveled to Syria to request military help from Demetrius Soter of Syria. Demetrius instead handed him over to Rome. Andriskos escaped captivity, raised a Thracian army, invaded Macedonia, and defeated the Roman praetor Publius Juventius. Andriskos then declared himself King Philip VI of Macedonia. In 148 B.C., Andriskos conquered Thessaly and made an alliance with Carthage, thus bringing the Roman wrath on him. In 148 B.C., in what the Romans called the Fourth Macedonian War, he was defeated by the Roman praetor Q. Caecilius Metellus at the Second Battle of Pydna. He fled to Thrace, whose prince gave him up to Rome. Andriskos' brief reign over Macedonia was marked by cruelty and extortion. After this, Macedonia was formally reduced to a Roman province.
GB84830. Bronze AE 21, SNG Cop 58; SNG ANS 104 (monograms obscure); AMNG III.2 p. 34, 29 var. (different monograms); BMC Macedonia -; SNG Dreer -; SNG Berry -, VF, dark patina, slightly rough, tiny edge split, weight 10.444 g, maximum diameter 21.4 mm, die axis 315o, Amphipolis mint, c. 187 - 31 B.C.; obverse head of Roma right, wearing earring, necklace, and Phrygian helmet ornamented with the wings, dorsal spines, and head of a griffin; reverse AMFIPO/LITWN in two lines, ΩΠNK monogram above, ΩΣ monogram below, all within oak wreath; ex Roma Auction 4 (30 Sep 2012), lot 1157; $80.00 (€68.00)
 







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Catalog current as of Thursday, April 19, 2018.
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