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

Janus

Janus was the Roman god of gates, doors, doorways, time, beginnings, and endings. He is depicted with two faces in opposite directions; one looks back into the past, while the other simultaneously looks forward into the future. He is the namesake of the month January.


Lampsakos, Mysia, c. 500 - 450 B.C.

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Lampsakos was founded by Greek colonists from Phocaea in the 6th century B.C. Soon afterward it became a main competitor of Miletus, controlling the trade roots in the Dardanelles. During the 6th and 5th centuries B.C., Lampsacus was successively dominated by Lydia, Persia, Athens, and Sparta. Artaxerxes I assigned it to Themistocles with the expectation that the city supply the Persian king with its famous wine. When Lampsacus joined the Delian League after the battle of Mycale in 479 B.C., it paid a tribute of twelve talents, a testimony to its wealth.
GA86592. Silver diobol, Baldwin Lampsakos, group A, type I, pl. V, 8; AMNG III 14; SNGvA 7390; SNG BnF 1126; SNG Ashmolean 653; SNG Cop 184; Rosen 524; SGCV II 3879, EF, well centered, dark toning, a few light marks, reverse die damaged, weight 1.230 g, maximum diameter 11.8 mm, die axis 180o, Lampsakos (Lapseki, Turkey) mint, c. 500 - 450 B.C.; obverse janiform female heads, each wearing stephanos, with central earring; reverse head of Athena left, wearing Corinthian helmet, within incuse square; $250.00 (212.50)


Tenedos, Islands off Troas, c. 550 - 470 B.C.

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Tenedos is mentioned in both the Iliad and the Aeneid, in the latter as the island where the Greeks hid their fleet near the end of the Trojan War in order to trick the Trojans into believing the war was over and into taking the Trojan Horse within their city walls. The island was important throughout classical antiquity despite its small size due to its strategic location at the entrance of the Dardanelles. In the following centuries, the island came under the control of a succession of regional powers, including the Persian Empire, the Delian League, Alexander the Great, the Kingdom of Pergamon, the Roman Empire, the Byzantine Empire, and the Republic of Venice. As a result of the War of Chioggia (1381) between Genoa and Venice the entire population was evacuated and the town was demolished. The Ottoman Empire established control over the deserted island in 1455. During Ottoman rule, it was resettled by both Greeks and Turks. In 1807, the island was temporarily invaded by the Russians. During this invasion, the town was burnt down and many Turkish residents left the island.Map of Troas
GS79837. Silver hemidrachm, SNG Cop 506; SNG Munchen 338; BMC Troas p. 91, 4; HGC 6 380 (S); SNGvA -, F, toned, weight 1.644 g, maximum diameter 12.2 mm, die axis 180o, Tenedos (Bozcaada, Turkey) mint, c. 550 - 470 B.C.; obverse archaic janiform head, male on left, female on right (Zeus and Hera?); reverse labrys (double axe), TENE∆EOΣ, all within an incuse square; scarce; $160.00 (136.00)


Lampsakos, Mysia, c. 4th - 3rd Centuries B.C.

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Lampsakos was founded by Greek colonists from Phocaea in the 6th century B.C. Soon afterward it became a main competitor of Miletus, controlling the trade roots in the Dardanelles. During the 6th and 5th centuries B.C., Lampsacus was successively dominated by Lydia, Persia, Athens, and Sparta. Artaxerxes I assigned it to Themistocles with the expectation that the city supply the Persian king with its famous wine. When Lampsacus joined the Delian League after the battle of Mycale in 479 B.C., it paid a tribute of twelve talents, a testimony to its wealth.
GS86591. Silver diobol, Baldwin Lampsakos, Group B, Type I; SNG Ashmolean 660; SNG BnF 1195; SNG Cop 191; SNGvA 1295; BMC Mysia p. 83, 36 ff., gVF, well centered and struck, light marks and deposits, weight 1.304 g, maximum diameter 11.9 mm, die axis 180o, Lampsakos (Lapseki, Turkey) mint, c. 4th - 3rd Centuries B.C.; obverse Janiform female head, wearing taenia and disk earring; reverse ΛA−M−Ψ (clockwise, starting above), helmeted head of Athena right, in a shallow round incuse; $120.00 (102.00)


Roman Republic, L. Licinius Murena, 169 - 158 B.C.

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RR54575. Bronze as, Crawford 186/1, Sydenham 373, F, nice green patina, weight 18.975 g, maximum diameter 29.8 mm, die axis 270o, Rome mint, 169 - 158 B.C.; obverse laureate and bearded head of Janus, I above; reverse prow right, MVRENA above, I right; $90.00 (76.50)


Roman Republic, Anonymous, c. 170 - 160 B.C.

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Janus (or Ianus) was the god of gates, doors, doorways, beginnings and endings. He is most often depicted as having two faces or heads, facing in opposite directions. Janus is believed to be one of the few major deities in Roman mythology that does not have a Greek origin or counterpart.
RR76436. Bronze as, cf. McCabe Anonymous K2, Crawford 198/1a, Sydenham 143, BMCRR 217, SRCV I 712, F, pitting, weight 28.660 g, maximum diameter 34.0 mm, die axis 270o, Rome(?) mint, c. 170 - 160 B.C.; obverse laureate and bearded head of Janus, I (mark of value) above; reverse prow right, I (mark of value) above, ROMA in exergue; scarce; $65.00 (55.25)


Roman Republic, C. Vibius C.F. Pansa, 90 B.C.

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In 90 B.C., Rome barely managed to stave off total defeat in the Social War. The Italians were denied citizenship and, despite making up over half the Roman army, were denied a fair share of the booty and lands. They rebelled and raised an army of 100,000 battle-hardened soldiers. After Roman victories and citizenship concessions, the war was nearly over by 88 B.C.
RR59575. Copper as, Crawford 342/7d; Sydenham 690b; SRCV I 744, F, weight 7.587 g, maximum diameter 26.3 mm, die axis 270o, Rome mint, 90 B.C.; obverse laureate head of Janus, I above; reverse ROMA, three galley prows right, C VIBI AV (AV ligate) in exergue, I right; $60.00 (51.00)


Roman Republic, L. Saufeius, 152 B.C.

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In Roman mythology, Janus (or Ianus) was the god of gates, doors, doorways, and of beginnings and endings. Janus is one of the few major deities in Roman mythology that does not have a Greek origin or counterpart.
RR68445. Bronze as, SRCV I 720, Crawford 204/2, Sydenham 385, BMCRR Rome 836, aF, weight 23.522 g, maximum diameter 31.4 mm, die axis 180o, Rome mint, 152 B.C.; obverse laureate and bearded head of Janus, I (mark of value) above; reverse prow right, crescent over LSAVF (VF ligate) above, I (mark of value) right, ROMA below; $45.00 (38.25)







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Janus