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Research Coins: Affiliated Auction

Sale: Nomos 1, Lot: 48. Estimate CHF25000. 
Closing Date: Tuesday, 5 May 2009. 
Sold For CHF30000. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

KINGS of MACEDON. Alexander I. 498-454. Oktadrachm (Silver, 28.59 g), circa 492-480/479. Horse standing to the right, its bridle held by a warrior, wearing a petasos and holding two transverse spears, standing to the right behind him Rev. Quadripartite incuse square. Kraay/Hirmer 384. Raymond pl. II, 5. SNG ANS 1. SNG Lockett 1266. Svoronos HPM p. 108, 16 and pl. XII, 6. Traité I, 1496 and pl. XLVII, 1. Very rare. A boldly struck and unusually fine example. Some deposits on the reverse, otherwise, extremely fine.

From the Spina collection, ex Leu 81, 16 May 2001, 162 and from the collection of H. de Nanteuil, Hess-Leu 31, 6 December 1966, 237.

This coin type has long been ascribed to the Bisaltai, one of the powerful Thraco-Macedonian tribes so active in the late 6th and early 5th centuries. The weight of the evidence now points to it being the earliest issue of Alexander I when he was allied with the tribes against the Persians. This coin is of unusually fine quality, in part because it was found no later than the 1930s and, thus, lacks the traces of corrosion and over-cleaning that mar more recently unearthed examples.