ROMAN; Autonomous Civic pagan coinage struck under Maximinus II c. CE 311-312.

 16 mm., 1.48 g, 11h,  ANTIOCH Mint

RCV 14927

O: GENIO AN-TIOCHENI, Antioch seated facing, river god swimming below

R:  APOLLONI-SANCTO, Apollo holding patera and lyre,  Z (for the seventh officina) in the right field. SMA  

The depictions are supposed to be according to Vagi, from the city’s most famous statuary. The Tyche of Antioch by Eutychides of Sikyon of which there is a Roman copy in marble in the Vatican Museum and the Apollo of Daphne by Bryaxis of Athens.

Ex: Warren Esty 2020
Ex: Dan Clark, 1989 at $30
Ex: Stack's Knobloch 5/5/84 portion of lot 1388
Ex: Frederick S. Knobloch Collection  


Craven Commercial Commemorative ; an Editorial Comment

illustration is utilized under FAIR USE DOCTRINE
comments provided below are opinion mixed with sarcasm.

Coming on the success of his injecting disinfectant health recommendations, Trump is now hocking a "Commemorative coin" on the White House Gift Shop site that commemorates a fight that is no where near over, except in his mind.

He is apparently ready to move on like someone with an attention deficit,  despite the massive loss of life (that he has barely expressed regret about except in the most generalized terms). These losses have not been matched for the USA since Vietnam, but the loss of life was incurred in a matter of 15 weeks or less and not 15 years.

Now comes a craven attempt to enrich his campaign (?) at the expense of the American people, and this is true since other campaign items such as slogan hats are also being marketed at the same website possibly in violation of campaign finance laws. 

The reality of the American experience of the virus is that the Trump administration has been failing the people of the United States horribly since January 2020 (actually since January 2017). Their lack of planning, securing and guaranteeing food supplies, equipment and supply chains vital to the population and first responders is unconscionable and without precedent in modern American history.  Trump has not been working in sync with any State Governor and in fact has advocated that they go it alone and the Federal Government is a last resort when in fact it should be coordinating all efforts and responses to the viral outbreak and not leaving it to individual states alone to address the crisis.

History will be written by the survivors of Covid-19, and the survivors will likely not be looking kindly on Donald Trump and his self-serving, craven antics, lies and distortions and cowardly lack of leadership in this ON GOING domestic tragedy and international crisis.

Before you waste $100-$125 on this trinket, think about giving that money to your local food pantry, Red Cross, or other charitable entity where the money can be used for the benefit of your fellow citizens and not for the benefit of Trump or his acolytes. For like Trump, this item is poorly rendered, wrought and not representative of the truth we are experiencing.   

A correction to the record
Obviously, this is quite misleading and apparently meant to be. Par for the course I say.


ROMAN/ Julian II CE 361-363

O: DN FL CL IVLIANVS PF AVG, helmeted cuir., diad., bust left with shield and spear

  R: VO[T/X]/M[V]LT/XX within a wreath, mm in ex. 

AE 3; 21 mm, 2.73 g, 6 h, Constantinople mint c. 362-363

mm branches on either side CONSB

RIC 165 (Rare)

RCV 19175

SPAIN/ Fernando IV el Emplazado CE 1295-1312

O: F REX CASTELLE mintmark beneath castle "S" for Sevilla

R: ET LEGIONIS, lion adv l.

Bi. Pepion, 19 mm, 0.85 g, Sevilla mint

Cayon 1224

ex: PNC Collection


Cuba 21st Century Peso Convertible Series Coins

KM #575.2  2017, 5 centavos, Nickel-plated steel 18 mm 2.65g
KM# 576.2, 2013, 10 centavos 3.94 g
KM# 577.2, 2018, 25 centavos, 5.7 g

KM# 578.1, 2002, 50 centavos, 25 mm 7.5 g
My thanks to MBK for bringing these samples back from a recent trip to Cuba. 


ROMAN CLIENT STATES; Thrace; Rhoimetalkes II & Augustus BCE 11-CE 12

AE 19 mm, 4.1 g

RPC 1718

Stancomb 908, plate 42.

O: KAIΣAPOΣ ΣEBAΣTOY, bare hd of Augustus r.
R: BAΣIΛEΩΣ POIMHTAΛKOY, laur hd of Rhoimetalkes r.

Ex: CNG 34 (1995) portion of lot 580.



Greek/Seleucid; Demetrius I Soter BCE 162-150

AR Tetradrachm; 26 mm, 16.52 g, 10h, Antioch on the Persian Gulf

SC 1707.1 (R2+)

O: Diad. Hd r, within fillet border

R: Apollo Delphios testing arrow in r hand resting left hand on grounded bow with two pellets on grip while std on omphalos. Monograms outer left and right. BAΣIΛEΩΣ on r, ΔHMHTPIOY on l.


Ex: Brad Bowlin, MS


GREEK/Seleucid; Antiochos IV Epiphanes BCE 175-164; four examples from Seleucia on Tigris

Seleucia on the Tigris mint c. BCE 173/2 or later 
SC 1510    

O: rad head of Antiochos r behind hd A/X denomination  
R: goddess with polos std l, on high backed throne, holding Nike and sometimes scepter, bird stg l at feet, dotted border, ΒΑΣΙΛΕΩΣ on r and ANTIOXOY on l.  
AE 16 mm Chalkous, 3.38 g, 1h

AE 16 mm Chalkous, 4.07g, 1h
AE 16 mm Chalkous, 4.51g, 1h
AE 15 mm Chalkous, 4.69g, 1h

Note: the bird on the reverse was thought to be an Ibis but SC notes that LeRider commented that on the best preserved specimens it was thought to be an eagle.



GREEK/Seleucid; Antiochos VII Sidetes BCE 138-129

AE 20 mm, 5.84 g, 12h, Seleucia on the Tigris mint, Late Summer BCE 130-Autumn BCE 129

SC 2129.1 or 2 (R2)

O: Diad. hd of Antiochos VII r, dotted border

R: barely legible inscriptions BAΣIΛΕΩΣ ANTIOXOY in two lines on r, and ΕYEPΓETOY on l.
Nike adv l holding wreath before her face and palm over shoulder, ΓΠP (BCE 130/129) in ex., but illegible on this example.

As is noted in SC on page. 394 of part II vol. 1, "Antiochus recaptured Babylonia from Phraates II in the late Summer of 130. He held Babylon for a bit more than a year, meanwhile extending his control over Mesopotamia and Elymais and challenging the Parthians in Media. In the autumn of 129, before 5 November, the Parthians attacked and defeated the Seleucid army in Media, and Antiochus perished in battle."

Examples of this coinage and a silver Tetradrachm and drachm represent the last Seleucid coinage from this mint. Parthian control was extended over the mint operations and continued thereafter to issue Tetradrachms for that regime.

Triton XIII, Lot: 543 (2010)
Sellwood 17.1
A Tetradrachm of Phraates II minted at Seleucia after the death of Antiochos VII and the Parthian seizure of the mint. The control utilized is the same as that found on the Tetradrachm of Antiochos VII minted in the prior year (cf SC 2127). This Tetradrachm is thought to have been issued around BCE 129 in the aftermath of the war between the Seleucids and Parthians.


Cilician Armenia: Hetoum I Հեթում Ա CE 1226-1270

AE Tank, 30mm, 7.85 g, Sis mint

Nercessian 353 v


King std on wide bench holding a globus cruciger and fleur de lys, Legend in Armenian reads "Hetoum Takavor Hayots" or "Hetoum King of the Armenians".


Cross Potent with lines in each quadrant, Legend in Armenian reads "Shineal I kaghakn I Sis" or "Struck in the city of Sis".


In the news; IRAN (1979-date)

Islamic Republic of Iran (1979-date)

Top Left: Epigraphic 1 Rial, KM #1232 (CN) 18 mm, 1.73 g. (this specimen, others are as much as 1.8)

O: جمهوري
  اسلامي ايران
  (Islamic Republic of Iran/One Rial)

R: denomination in a numeral and Rial written out and the date (1979) 

Top Right: 1 Rial,  Jerusalem (Quds)Day/Ramadan 1400 issue 1980, KM #1245 (bronze clad steel) 20 mm, 2.49 g.

O: Dome of the Rock from Jerusalem, to the right of the dome the inscription is for "International Quds Day" and to the left the inscription reads "Ramadan Mubarak 1400",
R: denomination above Rial, Islamic Republic of Iran above denomination and "Yawmal-Quds" written in Arabic beneath (Jerusalem Day) with tulips bordering either side.

Bottom: 250 Rial, 1994 KM #1262 (bi-metallic CN center in brass ring) 28 mm, 10.7 g

O: anepigraphic depiction of stylized flower in wreath.
R: Islamic Republic of Iran above denomination and date ١٣٧٣ below.

The top two examples were obtained forty years ago from Iranian friends who acquired them on trips home in the years immediately following the 1979 Revolution. The most recent example was collected from a batch of world coins recently purchased. It was the first Iranian coin acquired this way in many years. As of the present time (4 Jan 2020) 42,029.96 Iranian Rials equal 1 USD. To understand the equivalent values of these coins when issued, in mid-1979 1 USD was equal to 121 Rials the following year it was 217 and in 1993 it was 1,610. (these are black market exchange rates from an article in Iranian Economic Review Vol 10 #14 (Fall 2005) entitled "History of the Rial and Foreign Exchange Policy in Iran" by Mohsen Bahmani-Oskooee.


1920-2020 Lovely coins from a century ago

Italy, 1920-R, Vittorio Emanuele III 1900-1946

5 Centesimi, minted from 1919-1937, KM 59, reverse design reminiscent of the ancient designs on coins of Metapontum, mintage in 1920 was 33,372,000 coin specs 3.26 g and 19.8 mm.

10 Centesimi, minted from 1919-1937, KM 60, mintage in 1920 was 37,995,000 coin specs 5.34 g and 23 mm.

20 Centesimi, minted from 1908-1935, KM 44, mintage in 1920 was 27,284,000 coin specs 3.97 g and 21.5 mm.


ISLAMIC/Governors of Tabaristan; Sulayman b. Musa CE 787-789

AR Hemidrachm, 2.13 g 23mm, Tabaristan mint PYE 137/CE 788-789

Album 65 (S)

O: Sassanian style bust r with face replaced by rhomboid bearing the Arabic word بخ, Arabic marginal legend سليمن

R: Fire altar flanked by attendants, Tabaristan in Pahlavi on r and date PYE 137 on l.

ISLAMIC/ Governors of Tabaristan; Jarir CE 786-788

AR Hemidrachm, 1.94 g 24 mm, Tabaristan mint, PYE 136/CE 787-788

Album 63 (R)

O: Sassanian style bust r with Arabic marginal legend جرير

R: Fire altar flanked by attendants, Tabaristan in Pahlavi on r and date on l


ISLAMIC/Seljuq of Rum; Kayka’us II, Qilij Arslan IV and Kayqubad II CE 1249-1259


AR Dirham; 23 mm, 2.99 g, Qonya mint, AH 650/CE 1252-1253

Album 1227

لا اله الا الله
محمد رسول الله
المستعصم بالله اميرالمؤ
منين ضرب في سنة خمسين
 وستماءة بقونية
 السلاطين الاعاظم
عزالدنيا والدين كيكاوس
 و ركن الدنيا والدين قلج ارسلان
وعلاالدنيا والدين كيقوباد
ابن كيخشرو برحن امير المؤمنين

ISLAMIC/Seljuqs of Rum; Kayka’us II, Qilij Arslan IV and Kayqubad II CE 1249-1259

AR Dirham; 23 mm, 2.99 g, Sivas mint

Album 1227

O:  لا اله الا الله

محمد رسول الله

المستعصم بالله اميرالمؤ

منين ضرب في سنة

  ستماءة بسواس-----

السلاطين الاعاظم

عزالدنيا والدين كيكاوس

 و ركن الدنيا والدين قلج ارسلان

وعلاالدنيا والدين كيقوباد

ابن كيخشرو برحن امير المؤمنين



ISLAMIC/ Seljuqs of Rum; Kayka’us II عز الدين كيكاوس بن كيخسرو AH 643-647/CE 1245-1249

AR Dirham, 22 mm, 2.97 g, Qonya mint AH 647/CE 1249

Album 1223.1

O: Outer:

ضرب هذا[ \ الدرهم \ بقو\  نية


السلطان الاعظم

ظل الله في العالم

عزالدنيا و الدين

كيكاوس بن كيخشرو


R: Outer:  (in Diwani script)

 سنة \ سبع و\  اربعين و\ ستماءة


لا اله الا الله

محمد رسول الله

الامام المستعصم

بالله اميرالمؤمنين


GREEK/CAPPADOCIA; Ariarathes IV Eusebes BCE 220-163

AR Drachm 4.03 g, 20 mm, 1h,   RY 33=BCE 188/7

Simonetta 15

BMC 32,10

O: diad bust of Ariarathes IV r.

R: Athena stg l. holding Nike, BAΣIΛEΩΣ/APIAPAϴOY/EYΣEBOYΣ, H in far left field Δ in far right, monogram inner left beneath Nike. ГΛ in ex.

Simonetta writes on pp. 21-22 that the coins of Ariarathes IV "...issued in the 33rd year are most numerous. To account for the fact of so many drachms having been issued in the 33rd year of his reign, Reinach pointed out that in 188 BC Ariarathes was compelled to hand over to the Romans a very large amount of money, as punishment for the help he had given Antiochus. Cn. Manlius Vulso had, in fact, imposed upon him a tribute of 600 talents (1 talent=6,000 drachms) that came, eventually , to be halved through the intercession of his son-in-law Eumenes, king of Pergamum, an ally of the Romans."

In a note Simonetta continues "It might be thought that this enormous sum (for the times and for a small kingdom) of 1,800,000 drachms (600 talents x 6,000=3,600,000, reduced by half after the intercession of the King of Pergamum) could not have been paid over in coined money, but in bullion; however we are lend to believe that the greater part was handed over in coin, because of the very large number of drachms still extant: it suffices to recall that 31 varieties of the drachms of year 33 have been recorded here, and amongst this great diversity at least 77 obverse dies are known (Mørkholm, NC 1969, 26). If we reckon that each obverse die could have struck 10,000 specimens (Sellwood, NC 1963, 229), then, according to our present knowledge, at least 770,000 drachms came from the mint in this year. It is obvious, too, that many dies are not represented on the extant specimens, hence the number of drachms struck must be an even higher figure. There was also a clear advantage to Ariarathes in adopting this method of payment; these drachms are very often a little less in weight than they should be. Multiplying this small difference in weight by hundreds of thousands of examples, the saving becomes considerable."