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Research Coins: Electronic Auction


Unpublished Pergamum Medallion

389, Lot: 446. Estimate $3000.
Sold for $1900. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

MYSIA, Pergamum. Caracalla. AD 198-217. Æ Medallion (42mm, 43.13 g, 6h). Julius Anthemus, strategos. Struck AD 214. AVTKPAT K MA–PKOC AVP ANTΩNЄINOC, laureate bust of Caracalla right, wearing cuirass decorated with gorgoneion / ЄΠI CT–P ΙOV–Λ ANΘIMOV ΠЄPΓA/MHNΩN, ΠPOTΩN TPIC NЄΩKOPΩ/N, Zeus seated left, holding scepter and a figure of Nike who crowns emperor, wearing military attire, standing left, holding patera and spear. Unpublished in the standard references. VF, smoothed, tooled, and patina enhanced.

Ex Nomos 5 (25 October 2011), lot 246; Gorny & Mosch 169 (12 October 2008), lot 186; Gorny & Mosch 159 (8 October 2007), lot 298.

This medallion is part of a highly interesting series that has long fascinated numismatists. Taken as a whole, the group chronicles the major events of Caracalla’s visit to Pergamum en route to an eastern military expedition in AD 214. While this was only one stop on a trip that included imperial visits to the major cities and religious sites of Asia Minor, Pergamum’s sanctuary of Asclepius (the Asclepion) was of particular appeal to Caracalla, whose health declined precipitously in the latter years of his reign. The series features a wide array of reverse types, including Tyche or a leading magistrate presenting the emperor with a miniature cult image of Asclepius upon his arrival, Caracalla visiting the sacred grove adjacent to the Asclepion, and various scenes of sacrifices being offered to Asclepius. The series as a whole was signed by three different magistrates.

From the same obverse die as the previous lot.