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Coin Detail
Click here to see enlarged image.
ID:     151676
Type:     Greek
Region:     SICILY
City:     Syracuse
Issuer:     Philistis
Date Ruled:     275-215 BC
Metal:     Silver
Denomination:     Sixteen Litrai
Struck / Cast:     struck
Date Struck:     BC 275-215
Diameter:     26 mm
Weight:     13.51 g
Obverse Description:     Diademed and veiled bust of Philistis left; star behind
Reverse Description:     BASILISSAS FILISTIDOS, Nike in walking biga right; star above, K before
Primary Reference:     Burnett 034
Reference2:     SNG ANS 877
Photograph Credit:     Classical Numismatic Group
Grade:     Toned EF, a few marks.
Notes:     After a long and distinguished reign marked by moderation and stability, Hieron II was sufficiently assiduous to avoid any imperial aspirations in favour of loyalty to Rome, the prosperity of his people and family. In 218-216, while the Second Punic War was raging in Italy, he provided a powerful counterweight to any Carthaginian ambitions. He not only cooperated at sea with the Republic, but sent a contingent of 1500 troops and money in the form of a newly reformed currency in silver and gold, based on multiples of the traditional Sicilian silver unit of about 0.86 gm, the litra. The most numerous issue of this new coinage was that in the name of his queen, Philistis, with her head shown wearing the royal diadem below a veil that inevitably recalls the portrait of ArsinoƋ II at Alexandria. Nike as the charioteer of the reverse biga is obviously auspicious of final victory.