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Research Coins: Affiliated Auction

Sale: Nomos 1, Lot: 88. Estimate CHF40000. 
Closing Date: Tuesday, 5 May 2009. 
Sold For CHF38000. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

CYCLADES, Naxos. Circa 520/15-490 BC. Stater (Silver, 12.48 g). Kantharos with ivy leaf above and bunch of grapes hanging from each handle Rev. Quadripartite incuse square. Burlington Exhibition 1903, 376 = Holloway 6a = Nicolet-Pierre, Naxos I 27b = Sheedy 23b = Weber 4679 (this coin). Rare. Attractively toned and well struck. About extremely fine.

From the Spina collection, ex Leu 72, 12 May 1998, 224, Hess 253, 8 March 1983, 212, Schulman, 5 June 1930, 108, R. Ratto, Lugano, 4 April 1927, 1646, Schulman, 10 May 1926, 609, from the collection of Sir H. Weber and from the Santorini Hoard of 1821 (IGCH 7).

In antiquity Naxos was the wealthiest and most populous of all the Cycladic islands (it seems to have had more inhabitants in the late 6th century than it did in any succeeding period). It was a center of the marble trade and was famous for its sculptures; the Persian attack in 500 and their later sack of the island in 490 put an end to the early prosperity of Naxos and it never really fully recovered. The archaic coinage of Naxos was the most important of all island coinages. The kantharos was the city’s badge and refers to the cult of Dionysos; understandably so since Naxos was famous for its vineyards.