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Coin Detail
Click here to see enlarged image.
ID:     787310
Type:     GREEK
Region:     SICILY
City:     Syracuse
Issuer:     Roman rule
Date Ruled:     After 212 BC
Metal:     Bronze
Date Struck:     BC After 212
Diameter:     23 mm
Weight:     7.56 g
Die Axis:     12 h
Obverse Description:     Helmeted head of Ares right
Reverse Description:     Nike Bouthutousa kneeling facing on bull crouching right, preparing to sacrifice it
Primary Reference:     CNS 233
Reference2:     SNG ANS 1089
Photograph Credit:     Classical Numismatic Group
Grade:     Good VF, green patina.
Notes:     The figure of Nike sacrificing a bull, or Nike Bouthutousa, frequently appears in Classical art, representing the celebratory sacrifice for victory. Along with the portrait of Ares on the obverse, this coin may commemorate the recent capture by the Romans of the city of Syracuse in 212 BC. It was during the siege of this city that the mathematician and geometer Archimedes devised numerous engines by which the city might be saved. Among these was a claw which was supposed to be able to lift enemy warships out of the water. Unfortunately, such “secret weapons” did little to stave off the surrender of the city. With the fall of Syracuse, Rome was able to cut off support for Hannibal, then in southern Italy, thereby forcing him to finally withdraw from the peninsula.