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Research Coins: Feature Auction

Triton XXI, Lot: 142. Estimate $1000.
Sold for $800. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

EGYPT, Alexandria. Antoninus Pius. AD 138-161. Æ Drachm (33mm, 28.49 g, 12h). Dated RY 20 (AD 156/157). ANTωNIN[OC CЄB] ЄYCЄBHC (sic), laureate and draped bust right / Nilus reclining left on crocodile to right, holding a reed and cornucopia from which emerges a Genius who crowns Nilus with a wreath; the Genius also is holding a reed over his back shoulder; flora in exergue; L K (date) to left. Köln 1784 var. (obv. legend); Dattari (Savio) 2757 (this coin); K&G 35.717 var. (same); Emmett 1621.20; Staffieri, Alexandria In Nummis 126 (this coin). Near EF, dark brown patina with touches of green.

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. 2757.

Despite some striking weakness, this is still a highly detailed reverse die, with the flora (Nilotic plant life) in the exergue, and the Genius emerging from the cornucopia holding both a wreath and a reed. It also has the distinction of being one of the few Alexandrian obverse dies to spell out Antoninus’ epithet in full (ЄYCЄBHYC = Eusebius = Pius).