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Research Coins: Affiliated Auction

Sale: Nomos 5, Lot: 105. Estimate CHF12500. 
Closing Date: Monday, 24 October 2011. 
Sold For CHF17000. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

CALABRIA, Tarentum. Circa 333-331/0 BC. Nomos (Silver, 7.84 g 2), signed by the Kal... engraver. Nude jockey on horse, standing to left and being unbridled by a nude youth standing right; to left and right, 𐅂 and Δ; below horse, ΚΑΛ and Ξ. Rev. ΤΑΡΑΣ Phalanthos, nude, riding dolphin to right, but preparing to get off with his right leg far down and his left pulled up, holding bow and arrows in his left hand and an arrow in his right; below, ΦΙ. Basel 94 (this coin). Fischer-Bossert 725 f (this coin, illustrated on pl. 41. G. Giacosa, Uomo e Cavallo, pl. 56 (this coin). HN III 900. SNG ANS 975. Vlasto 563 (this coin). A superb piece of great artistry, one of the most beautiful of all Tarentine staters. Very finely toned and most attractive. Extremely fine.

From the Star Collection, LHS 102, 29 April 2008, 10 and from the collections of A. Moretti, Numismatica Ars Classica 13, 8 October 1998, 94 and M. P.Vlasto.

The pride the aristocratic horse owners of Tarentum had in themselves and their horses had no bounds. They considered themselves to be incredibly elegant and through the exceptionally fine dies of this coin we can see how they viewed themselves. On the obverse we have the victorious winner of a race, still on horseback, watching the owner remove his horse’s bridle; and on the reverse, the dolphin rider is getting off his mount, perhaps preparing to shoot a bird he sees from his uplifted eyes.