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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Themes & Provenance ▸ Gods, Non-Olympian ▸ CybeleView Options:  |  |  | 

Cybele

Cybele was the Phrygian deification of the Earth Mother.


Caracalla, 28 January 198 - 8 April 217 A.D.

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This type indicates Severus granted a special favor to Carthage. Septimius Severus was of African origin and, favoring the land of his birth, conferred benefits (including the jus Italicum) on Carthage and Utica. The water may indicate that he improved the water supply, possibly construction of an aqueduct.
RS85801. Silver denarius, RIC IV 130a; RSC III 97; BMCRE V p. 208, 280; Hunter III 38; SRCV II 6806, Choice gVF, excellent centering, nice boy portrait, light toning, some very light scratches, edge cracks, weight 3.708 g, maximum diameter 18.9 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 201 - 206 A.D.; obverse ANTONINVS PIVS AVG, laureate and draped bust right, from behind; reverse INDVLGENTIA AVGG IN CARTH, Dea Caelestis riding lion right over water gushing from rock, thunderbolt in right hand, scepter in left hand; $280.00 (238.00)


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

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Cybele, called mother of the gods, was originally Anatolian mother goddess. In Rome, Cybele was known as Magna Mater ("Great Mother"). Roman mythographers reinvented her as a Trojan goddess, and thus an ancestral goddess of the Roman people by way of the Trojan prince Aeneas. With Rome's eventual hegemony over the Mediterranean world, Romanised forms of Cybele's cults spread throughout the Roman Empire.
RS85214. Silver denarius, RIC IV C382 (S); BMCRE V p. 432, 14; RSC III 137; SRCV II 7401, Choice gVF, bold well centered strike, light toning, weight 3.517 g, maximum diameter 18.8 mm, die axis 0o, Rome mint, reign of Caracalla, 211 - 215 A.D.; obverse IVLIA PIA FELIX AVG, draped bust right, hair in horizontal ridges, flat coil at back of head, looped plait from ear and on neck; reverse MATRI DEVM, Cybele standing facing, legs crossed, leaning with left arm resting on a column, head left, towered and veiled, drum in right hand, long scepter resting against left arm, lion left at feet half visible from behind legs to left; scarce; $180.00 (153.00)


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.
RS85130. Silver denarius, RIC IV S564; RSC III 123; BMCRE V p. 163, S51; Hunter III p. 42, S11; SRCV II 6593, gVF, choice obverse, struck with a worn reverse die, edge cracks, weight 3.229 g, maximum diameter 20.1 mm, die axis 0o, Rome mint, c. 205 A.D.; obverse IVLIA AVGVSTA, draped bust right, hair in horizontal ridges; 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; scarce; $110.00 (93.50)


Plakia, Mysia, c. 4th Century B.C.

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Plakia, called Cilician Thebe in Homer's Iliad, was near the Troad, at the foot of Mount Placus, in a small region once called Cilicia (not the Cilicia in southern Anatolia). According to myth, it was founded by Heracles after his sack of Troy and named after his birthplace, Thebes in Boeotia. At the time of the Trojan War, people were known as the Cilicians, and ruled by King Eetion. Eetion's daughter Andromache was given in marriage to Hector, son of King Priam of Troy. The Achaians, led by Achilleus, sacked the city during the latter part of the war, killed King Eetion, his wife and his sons. They also carried off several women, including Chryseis, who became the concubine of Agamemnon. Chryseis' father attempted to ransom his to ransom his daughter, initiating the plot of the Iliad.
GB72008. Bronze AE 14, SNG BnF 2378; SNG Cop 545; SNGvA 1432; BMC Mysia p. 174, 5, VF, nice dark green patina, weight 1.538 g, maximum diameter 13.7 mm, die axis 180o, Plakia mint, c. 4th century B.C.; obverse turreted head of Cybele right; reverse ΠΛAKIA, lion right devouring prey, grain-ear right below; rare city; $55.00 (46.75)


Plakia, Mysia, c. 4th Century B.C.

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Plakia, called Cilician Thebe in Homer's Iliad, was near the Troad, at the foot of Mount Placus, in a small region once called Cilicia (not the Cilicia in southern Anatolia). According to myth, it was founded by Heracles after his sack of Troy and named after his birthplace, Thebes in Boeotia. At the time of the Trojan War, people were known as the Cilicians, and ruled by King Eetion. Eetion's daughter Andromache was given in marriage to Hector, son of King Priam of Troy. The Achaians, led by Achilleus, sacked the city during the latter part of the war, killed King Eetion, his wife and his sons. They also carried off several women, including Chryseis, who became the concubine of Agamemnon. Chryseis' father attempted to ransom his to ransom his daughter, initiating the plot of the Iliad.
GB86102. Bronze AE 12, SNG BnF 2379 (same dies); SNG Cop 545; SNGvA 1432; BMC Mysia p. 174, 5, F, centered on a tight flan, a bit rough, weight 1.207 g, maximum diameter 12.1 mm, Plakia mint, c. 4th century B.C.; obverse turreted head of Cybele right; reverse ΠΛAKIA, lion right devouring prey, grain-ear right below; rare city; $35.00 (29.75)







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Catalog current as of Tuesday, December 12, 2017.
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Cybele