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Research Coins: Affiliated Auction

Sale: Nomos 7, Lot: 75. Estimate CHF250. 
Closing Date: Tuesday, 14 May 2013. 
Sold For CHF1100. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

THESSALY, Pharsalos. Earlier 4th century BC. Trichalkon (Bronze, 7.39 g 12). Head of Athena Parthenos facing, turned slightly to the left, wearing a triple crested Athenian helmet adorned with tritons on the visor; to left and right of her neck truncation, Κ Β. Rev. Φ - Α - Ρ - Σ (partially retrograde starting from bottom left) Armored Thessalian horseman riding right, brandishing flail. Cf. Lavva 354 var. = BCD (Nomos) 1296 (but a smaller denonmination), otherwise apparently unpublished. An extremely rare if not unknown variant. Golden bronze color with traces of corrosion pitting, otherwise, good very fine.

From a European collection, formed before 2005.

This is an exceptionally interesting coin. Not surprisingly, Lavva does not have it, but there seems not to have been a specimen in BCD as well (unless it was of such poor condition that it was unnoticed). The obverse is rather unusual. It shows us Athena wearing a highly elaborate helmet with a decorated visor, very much unlike the usual helmet she wears on all the other Pharsalian bronzes (on those the helmet has eye holes and a nose guard, meant to be pulled down during battle - this just has a visor). It also bears the hitherto unrecorded magistrates’ initials ΚΒ. It is basically only similar to the small chalkous cited above, though that piece lacks the letters on the obverse.