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Research Coins: Affiliated Auction

Sale: Nomos 5, Lot: 246. Estimate CHF7500. 
Closing Date: Monday, 24 October 2011. 
Sold For CHF7000. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

Pergamon. Caracalla. 198-217. 8 Assaria (Orichalcum, 43mm, 43.10 g 6), under the magistracy of Julius Anthimos, 214. ΑΥΤΚΡΑΤ Κ ΜΑΡΚΟC ΑΥΡ ΑΝΤΩΝΕΙΝΟC Laureate bust of Caracalla to right, wearing cuirass ornamented with the head of Medusa (from the same die as the last). Rev. ΕΠΙ CΤΡ ΙΟΥΛ ΑΝΘΙΜΟΥ ΠΕΡΓΑ / ΜΗΝΩΝ - ΠΡΩΤΩΝ ΤΡΙC / ΝΕΩΚΟΡΩ / Ν On the right, Zeus, draped to the waist, seated left on throne, holding spear in his left hand and, in his right, a figure of Nike standing to left and crowning Caracalla, standing left in military dress, holding a long staff in his left hand and a phiale in his right. SNG Copenhagen -. SNG Paris -. SNG von Aulock -. Extremely rare and apparently unpublished save for its previous auction appearances. An impressive coin with an attractive, very dark green patina. Fields very slightly smoothed, otherwise, extremely fine.

Ex Gorny & Mosch 169, 12 October 2008, 186 and Gorny & Mosch 159, 8 October 2007, 298..

Nike is here crowning Caracalla in a propitiatory gesture in advance of his intended attack on Parthia the following year. In fact, he was delayed by a trip to Egypt, which ended in the killing of thousands of Alexandrians because of their supposed insults to the emperor. His campaign was quite successful but he was ultimately assassinated on the order of his Praetorian Prefect Macrinus, who had begun to fear for his own life. The often brutal, short bearded portraits of the mature Caracalla are the first example of the military-style heads that came to dominate the representations of the emperors of the later 3rd century.