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Research Coins: Feature Auction

Sale: Triton VII, Lot: 464. Estimate $300. 
Closing Date: Monday, 12 January 2004. 
Sold For $1000. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

KINGS of PARTHIA. Tiridates. 29-27 BC. Billon Tetradrachm (11.18 gm). Seleukeia on the Tigris mint. Dated Selekid Era Daisou 285 (May, 27 BC). Diademed bust left, no wart on forehead / BASILE-W[S] BASIL-EWN ARSAKOU EUERGETOU DIKAIOU EPIFANOUS [FI]LELLHNOS, Tiridates seated left on throne, holding sceptre and Nike, who presents a wreath to him; EPS (year) between throne legs, DAISI (month) in exergue. Sellwood 55.5; Shore 308; BMC Parthia -; MACW 586 corr. (Phraates IV). Toned, good VF, light graffiti under tone in obverse field, spot of encrustation on reverse. ($300)

Tiridates was a usurper who challenged Phraates IV for the Parthian kingship. Initially successful, he eventually was forced to seek refuge among the Romans. He brought with him a captive son of Phraates, who Augustus later used to exchange for the Roman legionary standards captured from the defeat of the legions under Crassus at Carrhae in 53 BC. He returned a few years later for another attempt, but was likely killed as his name disappears from the historical record (see lot 457 for more on his usurpation).