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Research Coins: Feature Auction

Sale: Triton VII, Lot: 322. Estimate $500. 
Closing Date: Monday, 12 January 2004. 
Sold For $750. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

CILICIA, Tarsos. Mazaios, Satrap of Cilicia. 361-334 BC. AR Stater (10.90 gm). 'BLTRZ' in Aramaic right, Baaltars seated left, torso facing, holding eagle in right hand, lotus-tipped sceptre in left; 'O' left / 'MZDI' in Aramaic above, lion bringing down bull to the left; letters below. SNG Levante 101 (this coin); SNG France 338 var. (letter on obverse); BMC Lycaonia pg. 172, 57; SNG Copenhagen Supp. 610 corr.; SNG von Aulock -. Toned EF. ($500)

(For a more detailed discussion of the career of Mazaios, see lot 304 above.)

Mazaios had been appointed satrap of Cilicia around 361 BC. Later, with the addition of Syria, Lebanon, and Israel to his territories, he became one of the Persian king's most powerful subordinates; during this period he put down a Phoenician revolt, which had the support of both the Pharaoh of Egypt, Nectanebo II, and 4,000 Greek mercenaries. For his services, Darius III promoted him to the overlordship of Mesopotamia and sealed it with the promise of marriage to the king's daughter, Barsine, or Statira.NEW PARAGRAPHAt Gaugamela in 331 BC, Maizaios' extraordinary abilities did little to ward of the advance of Alexander III of Macedon, as the flight of the Persian king signalled the collapse of the Persian army and Macedonian victory. Maizaios withdrew his forces to protect Babylon, and on the assurance that the city would not be plundered, the city was surrendered. Mazaios proved himself indispensible to the new government through his hospitality and sagacity. Alexander III of Macedon appointed him satrap of Babylonia, the first Persian to be so rewarded by the Greeks. He continued to be rewarded with favorable appointments until his death in 328 BC.