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Research Coins: Affiliated Auction

Sale: Nomos 1, Lot: 94. Estimate CHF52500. 
Closing Date: Tuesday, 5 May 2009. 
Sold For CHF56000. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

MYSIA, Lampsakos. Circa 360. Stater (Gold, 8.41 g 12). Veiled head of Demeter to left, wearing a wreath of lotus flowers, pendant earring and a pearl necklace Rev. Forepart of winged horse to right. Baldwin, Lampsakos 16. BMC 27. SNG France 1157 = Traité II, 2544. Extremely rare and with a splendid and serene head of the goddess. Some minor marks, otherwise, extremely fine.

This is one of the rarest of all the gold staters of Lampsakos - Paris is the only major collection to have an example (the one in London is plated). While Demeter appears on coins from many ancient Greek mints, the lotus crown she wears on this one is not what she usually wears. This probably means that this exceptionally beautiful head was copied from a specific cult statue that would have been known to the ancient viewer. Demeter was, of course, the goddess of grain and fertility, the Roman Ceres.