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Coin Detail
Click here to see enlarged image.
ID:     80000266
Type:     Greek
Region:     PONTUS KINGS
Issuer:     Pharnakes
Date Ruled:     Circa 63-46 BC
Metal:     Gold
Denomination:     Stater
Struck / Cast:     struck
Weight:     8.11 g
Die Axis:     12 h
Obverse Description:     Diademed head right
Reverse Legend:     BAΣIΛEΩΣ/BAΣIΛE_ΩN / MEΓAΛOY/ΦAPNAKOY / ΓMΣ
Reverse Description:     Apollo seated left on lion-footed throne, holding branch in extended right hand, left arm resting on kithara; tripod to left, ΓMΣ (date) to left
Mint:     Pantikapaion
Primary Reference:     G&K 1 (dies Α/A) = MacDonald 182 = Anokhin 216 = De Luynes 2396 (same dies)
Reference2:     SNG BM Black Sea -
Reference3:     SNG Cop -
Reference4:     SNG VA -; BMC -
Photograph Credit:     Classical Numismatic Group
Source:     http://www.cngcoins.com/Coin.aspx?CoinID=132489
Grade:     EF, light scratches
Notes:     Sale: Triton XII, Lot: 266 Extremely rare first issue of staters, only the de Luynes piece recorded (now in the BN). At the time of Golenko & Karyszkowski's publication of the corpus of known gold coins of Pharnakes, there were 15 known specimens. Very few specimens have since come to light, bringing the known population of these very rare pieces to about 22, of which about 10 are in museums. The present coin may be the sole example of the first year of issue available in the marketplace.Pharnakes was awarded the Bosporan Kingdom by Pompey, for the betrayal of his father Mithradates VI, King of Pontos. Little is known of his 16-year reign except for its ending. During the Civil War between Pompey and Julius Caesar, Pharnakes tried to recapture his father's former territories in Pontos. He won a victory over Caesar's general, Domitius Calvinus, and ordered Romans in the region castrated or put to the sword. In response, Caesar launched a rapid five day war against Pharnakes in 47 BC, culminating in the battle of Zela. Caesar emerged victorious, prompting him to report back to the Senate with the now famous dictum, "Veni, Vidi, Vici" (I came, I saw, I conquered).