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Research Coins: Affiliated Auction

Sale: Nomos 3 & 4, Lot: 135. Estimate CHF6500. 
Closing Date: Monday, 9 May 2011. 
Sold For CHF10000. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

ISLANDS off IONIA, Samos. Circa 522-520 BC. Didrachm (Silver, 6.87 g 1). Forepart of a steer to right, the truncation ornamented with a wreath. Rev. Head of a lion with open jaws to right; all within a border of dots in an incuse square. Barron pl. 5, 2. BMC 23. Traité I, 459 and pl. XI, 27. Extremely rare. A lovely toned example on a broad flan. Extremely fine.

From the Spina collection, ex Triton VI, 14 January 2003, 395.

This early coinage of Samos is very rare, indeed. The animal on the obverse is often called a bull, but...without horns this seems a bit unlikely. He is a very strong and potent creature nevertheless, and the lion’s head on the reverse is very reminiscent of the contemporary issues of Lydia.