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Research Coins: Feature Auction


Possible Depiction of Antinoüs as Hermanubis
Ex Dattari Collection

Triton XXI, Lot: 75. Estimate $3000.
Sold for $4000. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

EGYPT, Alexandria. Hadrian. AD 117-138. Æ Drachm (34mm, 23.69 g, 12h). Dated RY 18 (AD 133/134). AVT KAIC TPAIAN A∆PIANOC CЄB, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right / Bust of Hermanubis right, slight drapery, wearing kalathos; L IH (date) to left, palm frond to right. Köln –; Dattari (Savio) 7685 (this coin); K&G 32.584 var. (caduceus-palm frond combination before bust on reverse); RPC III 5891/8 (this coin, illustrated on pl. 291); Emmett 986.18 (R3); Staffieri, Alexandria In Nummis 71 (this coin). EF, green and brown patina, minor smoothing. Very rare type for this regnal year. A subtle and artistic coin.

From the Giovanni Maria Staffieri Collection, purchased from Renzo Canavesi, Sagno, 1996. Ex Renzo Canavesi Collection (Sagno); Dr. Piero Beretta Collection (Milan); Giovanni Dattari Collection, no. 7685.

Rainer Pudill, in his 2014 book Antinoos – Münzen und Medaillen, classifies this type from Hadrian’s regnal year 18 as “pseudo-Antinoos” or a “hidden” representation of Antinoüs (see p. 96). Indeed, when Hadrian introduced coinage at Alexandria specifically to honor Antinoüs, he is always depicted in the guise of Hermanubis or Hermes.