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

Isis

Isis was an ancient Egyptian goddess of motherhood, magic, nature and fertility, worshiped as the ideal wife and mother. She was the friend of slaves, sinners, artisans, and the downtrodden, and she listened to the prayers of the wealthy, maidens, aristocrats, and rulers. Worship of Isis spread throughout the Greco-Roman world, continuing until the suppression of paganism in the Christian era.


Dyrrhachion, Illyria, Greece, Roman Protectorate, 229 - 30 B.C.

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Durrs, one of the oldest cities in Albania, was founded as Epidamnos in 627 B.C. by colonists from Corinth and Corcyra. Located around a rocky harbor, surrounded by inland swamps and high cliffs, the city was difficult to attack from land or sea. After its defeat to Rome in 229 B.C., the new rulers renamed the city Dyrrachium. Epidamnos is similar to the Latin damnum, meaning "loss." Dyrrhachion is Greek for "bad spine" or "difficult ridge," likely referring to the nearby cliffs. Dyrrachium prospered under Rome and was made a naval and military base. Pompey made a stand there in 48 B.C. before fleeing south to Greece. Augustus made the city a colony for veterans of his legions following the Battle of Actium, proclaiming it a civitas libera (free town).
GS12075. Silver drachm, Ceka 374; BMC Thessaly p. 73, 118; SNG Munchen 433; SNG Cop -, VF, obverse slightly off center, tiny edge cracks, weight 3.369 g, maximum diameter 19.0 mm, die axis 0o, Dyrrhachium (Durrs, Albania) mint, 229 - 100 B.C.; obverse ΠEPIΓENHΣ, cow right, head turned back toward suckling calf left, head of Isis right above, grain over cluster of grapes right; reverse ∆YP − ΦA−NIΣ−KOY, double stellate pattern within double linear square; rare; $200.00 (178.00)


Iol-Caesarea, Mauretania, North Africa, c. 25 B.C. - 24 A.D.

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Phoenicians from Carthage founded Iol as a trading station around 400 B.C. It became a part of the kingdom of Numidia under Jugurtha, c. 160 - 104 B.C. In 29 B.C., Roman emperor Augustus made the Numidian King Juba II and his wife Cleopatra Selene II (daughter of Marc Antony and Cleopatra of Egypt) king and queen of Mauretania. The capital was established at Iol, which was renamed Caesarea in honor of the emperor.
GB85358. Bronze 1/4 Unit, Alexandropoulos MAA 147; Falbe-Lindberg III, p. 177, 290 (uncertain mint); SNG Cop 684 var. (kerykeion obv. left), F, dark green patina, tight flan, light corrosion, weight 2.102 g, maximum diameter 15.4 mm, die axis 270o, Iol-Caesarea (Cherchell, Algeria) mint, c. 25 B.C. - 24 A.D.; obverse head of Isis left, wearing vulture crown and horned solar-disk headdress; reverse three ears of barley; extremely rare; $180.00 (160.20)


Ptolemaic Kingdom, Ptolemy VI Philometor, 180 - 145 B.C., Cleopatra I Thea as Regent

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Ptolemy VI became king in 180 B.C. at the age of about 6 and ruled jointly with his mother, Cleopatra I, until her death in 176 BC. From 170 to 164 B.C., Egypt was ruled by Ptolemy, his sister-queen and his younger brother Ptolemy VIII Physcon. In 170 BC, the Seleukid King Antiochus IV invaded and was even crowned king in 168, but abandoned his claim on the orders from Rome. In 164 Ptolemy VI was driven out by his brother. He went to Rome and received support from Cato. He was restored the following year. In 152 BC, he briefly ruled jointly with his son, Ptolemy Eupator, but his son probably died that same year. In 145 B.C. he died of battle wounds received against Alexander Balas of Syria. Ptolemy VI ruled uneasily, cruelly suppressing frequent rebellions.
GP84841. Bronze tetrobol, Svoronos 1384 (Cyprus); SNG Cop 287; Noeske 202 (176 - 170 B.C.); Hosking 80; BMC Ptolemies p. 89, 6; Weiser 147; SNG Milan 319, VF, brown tone, edge crack, centration dimples, weight 15.699 g, maximum diameter 27.5 mm, die axis 0o, Alexandria mint, 180 - 176 B.C.; obverse head of (Cleopatra I as) Isis right, wearing grain wreath, hair in long curls; reverse ΠTOΛEMAIOY BAΣIΛEΩΣ, eagle standing left on thunderbolt, wings open, head left, ΠA monogram left; $175.00 (155.75)


Ptolemaic Kingdom, Cleopatra III and Ptolemy IX Soter II (Lathyros), c. 116 - 110 B.C.

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After Ptolemy VIII died in 116 B.C., Cleopatra III ruled with her mother Cleopatra II and son Ptolemy IX. In 110 B.C., she replaced Ptolemy IX as co-regent with her second son Ptolemy X. Ptolemy IX regained the throne in 109 but was again replaced in 107 B.C. In 101 B.C., Ptolemy X had his mother Cleopatra III murdered and then ruled alone or with his niece and wife, Berenice III.
GP66505. Bronze AE 12, Svoronos 1720 (Ptolemy X), Weiser 171, SNG Milan 541, Noeske -, SNG Cop -, VF, weight 1.376 g, maximum diameter 12.1 mm, die axis 45o, Kyrene mint, 116 - 110 B.C.; obverse head of Zeus-Ammon right; reverse ΠTOΛEMAIOY BAΣIΛEΩΣ (beginning at 5:00), headdress of Isis, E-W/Θ−Σ across fields; $44.00 (39.16)


Kyrene, Kyrenaica, North Africa, c. 120 - 96 B.C.

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From the time of the late reign of Ptolemy VIII to that of Ptolemy Apion. Ptolemy Apion was a son of Ptolemy VIII, perhaps by an Egyptian concubine. This makes him a half-brother of Ptolemy IX and X. He died without an heir and left his kingdom to Rome.
GB65943. Bronze obol, cf. Svoronos Pl. XLVI, 23 - 25 (Ptolemy V), SNG Cop 438 (Ptolemy IV - VIII, c. 221 - 140 B.C.), VF, green patina, encrusted, weight 7.654 g, maximum diameter 20.6 mm, die axis 0o, Kyrene mint, c. 120 - 96 B.C.; obverse diademed head of Ptolemy Soter right with aegis; reverse BAΣIΛEΩΣ ΠTOΛEMAIOY, head of Isis right, hair in formal curls down neck, cornucopia below chin; $32.00 (28.48)


Ptolemaic Kingdom, Cleopatra III and Ptolemy IX Soter II (Lathyros), 116 - c. 110 B.C.

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After Ptolemy VIII died in 116 B.C., Cleopatra III ruled with her mother Cleopatra II and son Ptolemy IX. In 110 B.C., she replaced Ptolemy IX as co-regent with her second son Ptolemy X. Ptolemy IX regained the throne in 109 but was again replaced in 107 B.C. In 101 B.C., Ptolemy X had his mother Cleopatra III murdered and then ruled alone or with his niece and wife, Berenice III.
GP62411. Bronze AE 14, cf. Svoronos 1845; Buttrey Cyrene 378; SNG Cop 685, Noeske 392, Weiser -, F, weight 1.923 g, maximum diameter 13.6 mm, die axis 0o, Kyrene mint, 116 - c. 110 B.C.; obverse horned head of Zeus-Ammon right, wearing diadem; reverse ΠTOΛE BAΣIΛE ΣΩTH (or similar), headdress of Isis; $25.00 (22.25)







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Catalog current as of Friday, July 21, 2017.
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Isis