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Research Coins: Feature Auction

 
612740
Sale: CNG 61, Lot: 2740. Estimate $400. 
Closing Date: Wednesday, 25 September 2002. 
Sold For $500. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

ROMAN. Circa 2nd Century AD. Height 12mm. Dark red bloodstone intaglio. Abraxas facing, his cock-head turned right, holding a round shield in his left hand and a whip in his right; in the field above his head, a crescent and an eight-pointed star. Choice. ($400)

Abraxas is represented as a daemon with a cock's head and twin snake legs. He occurs in Gnostic literature and systems and it has been suggested that his name is that of some forgotten sun-god. His fearsome aspect was considered to be a potent protection as an amulet.