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Research Coins: Feature Auction

 
10700067

Superb Hadrian Drachm Commemorating His Visit to Alexandria

Triton XXI, Lot: 67. Estimate $5000.
Sold for $4250. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

EGYPT, Alexandria. Hadrian. AD 117-138. Æ Drachm (35mm, 24.60 g, 12h). Dated RY 15 (AD 130/131). AVT KAI TPAI A∆PIA CЄB, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right / Hadrian standing left, holding scepter, greeted by Alexandria, clad in elephant skin headdress, chiton, and peplos, holding two grain ears and kissing emperor’s extended right hand; L IE (date) across lower field. Köln 1034; Dattari (Savio) 1610 & 7544-5; K&G 32.509; RPC III 5777/47 (this coin); Emmett 964.15; Staffieri, Alexandria In Nummis 65 (this coin). Superb EF, lovely reddish brown patina with touches of green in the devices. Extraordinary quality with only a whisper of wear. Certainly one of the finest known examples.


From the Giovanni Maria Staffieri Collection, purchased from Athos Moretti, Bellinzona, February 1987. Ex Athos Moretti Collection (Bellinzona); Numismatica Aretusa SA (Lugano–Franco Chiesa).

This drachm, a two-year type (regnal years 12 and 15), is part of an extensive series of billon and bronze issues that commemorate Hadrian’s triumphant tour of Egypt in AD 130. The trip was marred by the tragic and mysterious death of Hadrian’s young companion, Antinoüs, on their boat trip up the Nile.