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Research Coins: Feature Auction

Triton XV, Lot: 699. Estimate $500.
Sold for $42500. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

THESSALY, Pherai. Alexander. Tyrant, 369-358 BC. AR Drachm (18mm, 5.91 g, 6h). Laureate head of Ennodia r., wearing triangular pendant drop earring and pearl necklace; in field r., torch / [AΛEΞA]NΔPOY from above, r. down and circular, lion’s head r., with open jaws; below, small head of lion to r. See J. Hirsch XIII (15 May 1905) [Rhousopoulos] 1445 (same dies). VF, toned over slightly etched fields, mostly showing on the obv., otherwise well centred and attractive; rare. From the collection of Charles Gillet (photofile no. 881).

Ex Monnaies et Médailles 54 (26 October 1978) 209, hammer CHF 9000.

The obverse torch symbol shows particularly clearly on this coin; it is a flaming torch with a fairly long body that consists of several straight twigs or branches kept together by a band applied just after the handle. This handle is wider than the rest of the body because it is wrapped diagonally by cloth or leather bands. The vertical projection where the handle joins the actual body of the torch is not a die flaw but an integral part of the device. Its purpose remains unclear.