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Research Coins: Affiliated Auction

Sale: Nomos 1, Lot: 64. Estimate CHF75000. 
Closing Date: Tuesday, 5 May 2009. 
Sold For CHF86000. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

EUBOIA, Chalkis. Circa 170 BC. Tetradrachm (Silver, 16.94 g 1). Veiled head of Hera to right, wearing stephane, pendant earring and necklace Rev. ΧΑΛΚΙΔΕΩΝ Hera standing right, holding scepter in her right hand and reins in both, driving quadriga with horses walking to right; to left, Μ/Μ; to right, Σ; all within oak wreath tied on the left. BCD Euboia 235 (this coin). Picard - (but see issues 56 and 57). Unique. The only example of this issue known and one of only five Hellenistic tetradrachms of Chalkis in existence, the other four, from two issues, are all in museums (London, New York, Oxford and Paris). A superb piece of the finest style, beautifully struck and perfectly preserved. Uncleaned, with some traces of horn silver as found, otherwise, extremely fine.

From the Spina collection and from the BCD collection, Lanz 111, 25 November 2002, 235 (illustrated on the front cover).

This is unquestionably one of the great rarities of the Hellenistic coinage of Greece, and one of the most beautiful as well. Precisely why the city should have produced three issues of tetradrachms circa 170 is unclear, but since they are stylistically very close their striking could not have lasted very long and all probably relate to a single event. While the BCD cataloguer suggested that this coin was struck circa 180 that seems somewhat early, and it may be better to see these issues as having been struck to help the Romans in the late 170s, in the run up to the war against Perseus of Macedon.