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Research Coins: Affiliated Auction

Sale: Nomos 1, Lot: 7. Estimate CHF2750. 
Closing Date: Tuesday, 5 May 2009. 
Sold For CHF2200. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

LUCANIA, Velia. Circa 535-465 BC. Drachm (Silver, 3.71 g). Forepart of lion to right, gnawing on stag’s leg Rev. Irregular incuse square. Dewing 451. HN III 1259. SNG Delepierre 399. Williams 21. Well struck and unusually well centered with all the design visible. Minor flan flaw on the reverse, otherwise, nearly extremely fine.

Velia was founded by Phokaians in circa 540. Their earliest coins were unlike anything found in contemporary Magna Graecia; rather, they harked back to the issues of Asia Minor with these pieces looking very much like the hektes struck in the mother city. The early drachms were issued in considerable numbers but many are off struck with the lion’s mouth or entire head off the flan; this piece is a pleasing exception to that rule.