Coins and Antiquities Consignment Shop
  Welcome Guest. Please login or register. All items are guaranteed authentic for eternity! Please call us if you have questions 252-646-1958. Thanks for your business! Welcome Guest. Please login or register. Internet challenged? We are happy to take your order over the phone. Please call if you have questions 252-646-1958. Thanks for your business!

Catalog Main Menu
Fine Coins Showcase

Antiquities Showcase
Recent Additions
Recent Price Reductions

Show empty categories
Shop Search
Shopping Cart
Contact Us
About Forum
Shopping at Forum
Our Guarantee
Payment Options
Shipping Options & Fees
Privacy & Security
Forum Staff
Selling Your Coins
Identifying Your Coin
FAQs
   View Categories
Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Greek Coins ▸ Geographic - All Periods ▸ Persia & MesopotamiaView Options:  |  |  | 

Ancient Coins of Persia and Mesopotamia

Also included on this page are coins minted under Persian rule in other regions of the Persian Empire.


Seleukid Kingdom, Seleukos III Keraunos, 226 - 223 B.C.

Click for a larger photo
Seleucus III Soter proved not to be the "Savior" that his official royal epithet advertised; nor did live up to his nickname Keraunos - "Thunder." He failed to reclaim western Asia Minor from his cousin, Attalus of Pergamum, and was assassinated after only a brief reign of only a few years.
GS86617. Silver drachm, Houghton-Lorber I 933, Newell WSM 1327, Weber 7867, Hoover Syrian 418 (R3), gVF, superb portrait, light toning, light bumps and marks, reverse double struck with a worn damaged die, weight 4.056 g, maximum diameter 18.9 mm, die axis 0o, Northern Syria or Northern Mesopotamia, uncertain mint, 226 - 223 B.C.; obverse diademed head of Seleukos III with long sideburns; reverse Apollo seated left on omphalos, examining arrow in right hand, resting left hand on grounded bow, BAΣIΛEWS (downward on right) S (δοωνωαρδ ον ριγητ) Σ</θwnward on right) SEΛEYKOY (downward on left), AP monogram (control) left, monogram (control) right; very rare; $1200.00 (€1020.00)
 


Mesopotamia, Levant, Arabia, or Egypt, Imitative Old Style Tetradrachm, c. 450 - 350 B.C.

Click for a larger photo
From Mesopotamia, across the Levante and Arabia, to Egypt, Persian satraps and local rulers struck imitative Athenian type tetradrachms. Some were struck with styles much different from the Athenian originals. Some included monograms or inscriptions in Aramaic or other local scripts. The style of this coin is close to the original Athenian but unusual enough that we are convinced it is an imitative. In particular, Athena's face is distorted and the owls eyes are unusually large.
GS86605. Silver tetradrachm, cf. Dewing 1622; SNG Cop 40; Svoronos Athens pl. 17, 18; SNG Munchen 56; HGC 4 1597; SGCV I 2526, gVF, centered on a tight flan, bumps and marks, punch on obverse, banker's mark on reverse, tiny edge cracks, weight 17.243 g, maximum diameter 24.6 mm, die axis 225o, unofficial mint, c. 450 - 350 B.C.; obverse head of Athena right, almond shaped eye, crested helmet with olive leaves and floral scroll, wire necklace, round earring, hair in parallel curves into ear; reverse owl standing right, head facing, erect in posture, olive sprig and crescent left, AΘE downward on right, all within incuse square; $750.00 (€637.50) ON RESERVE


Parthian Empire, Pakoros II, c. 78 - 105 A.D.

Click for a larger photo
Traditionally this king has been called Pakoros II (or Pacorus II); however, the latest research lists only one Parthian king named Pakoros. Beardless portraits on his earliest coins indicate Pakoros began his rule very young. After many years of civil war with many rivals, including Vologases II, Artabanus III and others, Pakoros eventually reclaimed the whole of the empire. According to Cassius Dio, he sold the kingdom of Osroene to Abgar VII, and according to Ammianus Marcellinus he enlarged the Parthian capital Ctesiphon and built its walls. He maintained close contact with the Dacian ruler Decebalus. In 101, Pacorus sent an embassy to the Han Dynasty of China. He disappeared from coinage around 105 A.D.
GS85451. Silver drachm, SNP VII 868 (same obv. die); Sellwood 73.13; Shore 397; BMC Parthian p. 195, 15 (notes one known with PK); Sunrise -, aEF, bold strike, mild die rust, typical tight flan, holed, weight 3.369 g, maximum diameter 19.5 mm, die axis 0o, Ecbatana (Hamedan, Iran) mint, c. 78 - 90 A.D.; obverse draped bust left with short pointed straight beard, wearing earring, diadem with four bands, loop behind, three diadem ends, torque without visible end, PK in Aramaic upper right; reverse archer (Arsakes I) seated right on throne, bow in extended right hand, cross under legs, TA pellet monogram under bow, squared seven-line blundered Greek legend around; from the Robert L3 Collection, extremely rare with the king's name abbreviated in Aramaic on the obverse; $260.00 (€221.00) ON RESERVE


Kingdom of Persis, Second Unknown King, 1st Century A.D.

Click for a larger photo
Persis was located in what is now southern Iran. "Persians" settled the area as early as the 8th century B.C. From the time after its conquest by Alexander the Great, Persis was most often quasi-independent, under the hegemony of a Seleukid or Parthian king. Immediately following Alexander's death, Persis was subject to the Seleucid Kingdom. About 290 B.C., Persis regained independence. The coins produced during this period were Greek-inspired, but inscriptions were Aramaic, symbolic of Persis' rejection of the Greek ruling class. Sometime between c. 250 and 223 B.C., the Seleucids regained control. Mithradates II later incorporated Persis as a sub-kingdom of Parthia. Under Parthian domination, the coins and appearance of the kings depicted on them assumed the Parthian style. The last King of Persis, Artaxerxes, defeated the Parthians and founded the Sassanian Empire.
GS63285. Silver diobol, Alram IP 621; BMC Arabia p. 227, 11; SGICV 5938; cf. Tyler-Smith 220 (obol); Sunrise 650 (obol), VF, well centered, uneven toning, weight 1.077 g, maximum diameter 13.0 mm, die axis 45o, Persepolis (Fars Province, Iran) mint, End of 1st Century A.D.; obverse bearded, draped bust left, wavy thick hair, wearing crown with stepped battlements and diadem; reverse diadem, two ties laid across center; $70.00 (€59.50)
 


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

Click for a larger photo
Caracalla was assassinated near Carrhae on 8 April 217, while urinating on a roadside. When his escort gave him privacy to relieve himself, Julius Martialis, an officer of his personal bodyguard, ran forward and killed Caracalla with a single sword stroke. Martialis fled on horseback, but was killed by a bodyguard archer. Herodian says Caracalla had executed Martialis' brother a few days earlier on an unproven charge. Cassius Dio says that Martialis was resentful at not being promoted to the rank of centurion. Macrinus, the Praetorian Guard Prefect, who succeeded him as emperor, may have arranged the assassination.
RP78055. Bronze AE 15, SNG Hunterian 2490 - 2491; BMC Arabia p. 86, 37; SNG Cop -, SNG Righetti -, VF, near black patina with red earthen highlighting, tight flan, light corrosion, weight 1.643 g, maximum diameter 14.5 mm, die axis 180o, Carrhae (Altinbasak, Turkey) mint, 28 Jan 198 - 8 Apr 217 A.D.; obverse M AVR ANTONINVS P F AVG, laureate head right; reverse COL AVR METROPOLI ANTONINIANA, veiled and turreted bust of Tyche right; from the Butte College Foundation, ex Lindgren; $70.00 (€59.50)
 


Kingdom of Persis, Second Unknown King, 1st Century A.D.

Click for a larger photo
Persis was located in what is now southern Iran. "Persians" settled the area as early as the 8th century B.C. From the time after its conquest by Alexander the Great, Persis was most often quasi-independent, under the hegemony of a Seleukid or Parthian king. Immediately following Alexander's death, Persis was subject to the Seleucid Kingdom. About 290 B.C., Persis regained independence. The coins produced during this period were Greek-inspired, but inscriptions were Aramaic, symbolic of Persis' rejection of the Greek ruling class. Sometime between c. 250 and 223 B.C., the Seleucids regained control. Mithradates II later incorporated Persis as a sub-kingdom of Parthia. Under Parthian domination, the coins and appearance of the kings depicted on them assumed the Parthian style. The last King of Persis, Artaxerxes, defeated the Parthians and founded the Sassanian Empire.
GS63324. Silver diobol, Alram IP 621; BMC Arabia p. 227, 11; SGICV 5938; cf. Tyler-Smith 220 (obol); cf. Sunrise 650 (obol), weight 0.740 g, maximum diameter 11.8 mm, die axis 0o, Persepolis (Fars Province, Iran) mint, End of 1st Century A.D.; obverse bearded, draped bust left, wavy thick hair, wearing crown with stepped battlements and diadem; reverse diadem, two ties laid across center; $65.00 (€55.25)
 


Kingdom of Persis, Second Unknown King, 1st Century A.D.

Click for a larger photo
Persis was located in what is now southern Iran. "Persians" settled the area as early as the 8th century B.C. From the time after its conquest by Alexander the Great, Persis was most often quasi-independent, under the hegemony of a Seleukid or Parthian king. Immediately following Alexander's death, Persis was subject to the Seleucid Kingdom. About 290 B.C., Persis regained independence. The coins produced during this period were Greek-inspired, but inscriptions were Aramaic, symbolic of Persis' rejection of the Greek ruling class. Sometime between c. 250 and 223 B.C., the Seleucids regained control. Mithradates II later incorporated Persis as a sub-kingdom of Parthia. Under Parthian domination, the coins and appearance of the kings depicted on them assumed the Parthian style. The last King of Persis, Artaxerxes, defeated the Parthians and founded the Sassanian Empire.
GS63290. Silver diobol, Alram IP 621; BMC Arabia p. 227, 11; SGICV 5938; cf. Tyler-Smith 220 (obol); Sunrise 650 (obol), aVF, obverse rough, tight flan, weight 1.018 g, maximum diameter 12.4 mm, die axis 45o, Persepolis (Fars Province, Iran) mint, End of 1st Century A.D.; obverse bearded, draped bust left, wavy thick hair, wearing crown with stepped battlements and diadem; reverse diadem, two ties laid across center; $45.00 (€38.25)
 


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

Click for a larger photo
Caracalla was assassinated near Carrhae on 8 April 217, while urinating on a roadside. When his escort gave him privacy to relieve himself, Julius Martialis, an officer of his personal bodyguard, ran forward and killed Caracalla with a single sword stroke. Martialis fled on horseback, but was killed by a bodyguard archer. Herodian says Caracalla had executed Martialis' brother a few days earlier on an unproven charge. Cassius Dio says that Martialis was resentful at not being promoted to the rank of centurion. Macrinus, the Praetorian Guard Prefect, who succeeded him as emperor, may have arranged the assassination.
RP67880. Bronze AE 20, cf. BMC Arabia p.85, 16 ff.; SNG Hunterian 2485 ff.; SNG Cop 176 ff., F, nice green patina, flan crack, weak legends, weight 4.254 g, maximum diameter 20.3 mm, die axis 180o, Carrhae (Altinbasak, Turkey) mint, obverse M AVR ANTONINVS P F AVG, laureate head right, with short beard; reverse COL MET ANTONINIANA, turreted, veiled, and draped bust of Tyche right; $36.00 (€30.60)
 







CLICK HERE TO SEE MORE FROM THIS CATEGORY - FORVM's PRIOR SALES


REFERENCES

Babelon, E. Numismatique d'Edessa. (Paris, 1904).
Castelin, K. The Coinage of Rhesaena in Mesopotamia. ANSNNM 108. (New York, 1946).
Forrer, L. Descriptive Catalogue of the Collection of Greek Coins formed by Sir Hermann Weber, Vol III, Part 2. (London, 1926).
Göbl, R. Münzprägung des Kusanreiches. (Wien, 1984).
Göbl, R. Sasanian Numismatics. (Braunschweig, 1971).
Gyselen, R., ed. New Evidence for Sasanian Numismatics: The Collection of Ahmad Saeedi. (Leuven, Belgium, 2004).
Hill, G. Catalogue of the Greek Coins in the British Museum: Arabia, Mesopotamia and Persia. (London, 1922).
Hoover, O. Handbook of Syrian Coins, Royal and Civic Issues, Fourth to First Centuries BC. HGC 9. (Lancaster, PA, 2009).
Houghton, A. Coins of the Seleucid Empire from the Collection of Arthur Houghton. ACNAC 4. (New York, 1983).
Houghton, A., C. Lorber & O. Hoover. Seleucid Coins: A Comprehensive Catalog. (Lancaster, 2002 - 2008).
Klose, D. & W. Müseler. Die Münzen aus Persepolis von Alexander dem Großen zu den Sasaniden. (Munich, 2008).
Lindgren, H. & F. Kovacs. Ancient Bronze Coins of Asia Minor and the Levant. (San Mateo, 1985).
Lindgren, H. Lindgren III: Ancient Greek Bronze Coins. (Quarryville, 1993).
Mitchiner, M. Indo-Greek and Indo-Scythian Coinage. (London, 1975-1976).
Nelson, B., ed. Numismatic Art of Persia. The Sunrise Collection, Part I: Ancient - 650 BC to AD 650. (Lancaster, PA, 2011).
Newell, E. T. Alexander Hoards II, Demanhur, 1905. ANSNNM 19 (1923).
Newell, E. T. The Coinage of the Eastern Seleucid Mints, From Seleucus I to Antiochus III. (New York, 1938).
Nicolet-Pierre, H. "Silver and gold strikes in Babylonia between 331 and 311 or Mazda Seleucus" in Travaux Le Rider.
Nicolet-Pierre, H. "Thionèsis, roi de Characène (25/24-20/19 ou 19/18 avant J.-C.)" in Revue Numismatique, 6e sér. 20 (1978).
Prieur, M. & K. Prieur. The Syro-Phoenician Tetradrachms and their fractions from 57 BC to AD 258. (Lancaster, PA, 2000).
Price, M. The Coinage in the name of Alexander the Great and Philip Arrhidaeus. (Zurich-London, 1991).
RPC Online - http://rpc.ashmus.ox.ac.uk/coins/
Sear, D. Greek Coins and Their Values, Vol. 2: Asia and Africa. (London, 1979).
Sear, D. Greek Imperial Coins and Their Values. (London, 1982).
Sellwood, D. An Introduction to the Coinage of Parthia. (London, 1980).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Denmark, The Royal Collection of Coins and Medals, Danish National Museum, Vol. 7: Cyprus to India. (West Milford, NJ, 1982).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Great Britain XII, The Hunterian Museum, Univ. of Glasgow, Part 2: Roman Provincial Coins: Cyprus-Egypt. (Oxford, 2008).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Israel I, The Arnold Spaer Collection of Seleucid Coins. (London, 1998).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Turkey 1: The Muharrem Kayhan Collection. (Istanbul, 2002).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, United States, Burton Y. Berry. Part 2. Megaris to Egypt.. (New York, 1962).
Tyler-Smith, S. "A parcel of Persis drachms, half drachms and obols" in NC 164 (2004).
van't Haaff, P. Catalogue of Elymaean Coinage, Ca. 147 B.C. - A.D. 228. (Lancaster, PA. 2007).
Waggoner, N. "The Early Alexander Coinage at Seleucia on the Tigris" in ANSMN 15 (1969).
Winzer, A. Antike portraitmünzen der Perser und Greichen aus vor-hellenistischer Zeit (Zeitraum ca. 510-322 v.Chr.). (March-Hugstetten, 2005).
Wroth, W. A Catalogue of the Greek Coins in the British Museum, Parthia. (London, 1903).

Catalog current as of Thursday, April 19, 2018.
Page created in 0.719 seconds.
Persia and Mesopotamia