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Research Coins: Feature Auction

 
10700134
Triton XXI, Lot: 134. Estimate $1000.
Sold for $950. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

EGYPT, Alexandria. Antoninus Pius. AD 138-161. Æ Drachm (33mm, 24.06 g, 12h). Dated RY 11 (AD 147/148). AYT K T AIΛ A∆P ANTωNЄINOC CЄB ЄYC, laureate, draped, and cuirassed bust right / Isis enthroned right, crowned with horns and disk, suckling the infant Harpokrates, who is crowned with skhent and holding lotus bud; L ЄNΔЄK ATOV (date) around. Köln 1579 var. (without L at beginning of date); Dattari (Savio) 8536-7; K&G 35.405; Emmett 1585.11; Staffieri, Alexandria In Nummis 122 (this coin). Good VF, brick red and brown patina, minor roughness. Rare type for this regnal year, and in exceptional condition.


From the Giovanni Maria Staffieri Collection. Ex Group CEM Collection (Classical Numismatic Group 88, 14 September 2011), lot 1097.

Following Alexander’s conquest of Egypt, the cult of Isis spread across the Mediterranean, with its popularity reaching its zenith in the Roman period, when the “goddess of a thousand names” became one of the Mediterranean’s principal deities. It is generally recognized that the iconography of Isis nursing Harpokrates influenced Christian representations of the Madonna and Child, particularly the Virgo lactans type popular in Medieval Europe.