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Coin Detail
Click here to see enlarged image.
ID:     81000263
Type:     Greek
City:     Uncertain Tribe
Metal:     Silver
Denomination:     Obol
Struck / Cast:     struck
Date Struck:     BC Circa 480-460
Weight:     0.83 g
Obverse Description:     Male goat kneeling right on groundline
Reverse Description:     Quadripartite incuse square
Primary Reference:     HPM pl III, 22 var. (incuse)
Reference2:     SNG ANS (Macedonia) 66 (Aigai)
Reference3:     Sheedy Non-Parian group 3
Photograph Credit:     Classical Numismatic Group
Grade:     VF, lightly toned, minor porosity.
Notes:     Sale: CNG 81, Lot: 263 J. Svoronos, in HPM (pp. 34-5), set forth an argument for not assigning certain goat-type coins to Aigai in Macedon, based on the gender of the goat depicted. The canting type of goat is a play on the Greek word for goat (Α?Ξ, pl. Α?ΓΕς), and is used for mint cities whose ethnic began with the syllable aig. Svoronos argued that Α?Ξ must refer to a female goat, as a male goat would be called ΤΡ?ΓΟς. The foundation myths of Aigai in Justin also use the Latin form for a she-goat, capra. Thus, any depiction of a male goat would rule-out attributing such a coin to Aigai. This argument has been largely ignored, or unnoticed, as many still attribute all goat issues of the Macedonian region to Aigai. More recently, however, O. Picard (in "Les monnaies au bouc attribuÉes À Aigai" in BSFN 50/6 [1995]) and C. Lorber (in Lorber, Goats), have revived Svoronos' theory and convincingly argue in its favor. As this coin clearly shows a male goat, its attribution cannot be to Aigai. Similarly, as the goat is not looking backward, it does not fit into the group Lorber has now attributed to the Krestones/Migdones. One other possibility is that this may be an issue of Paros, but Sheedy conclusively shows that no small fractions were struck in Paros during the archaic period. As these coins typically show up in hoards of Macedonian coinage (see, e.g., Sheedy p 112), they likely belong to an uncertain tribe in the region.