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Research Coins: Feature Auction

Sale: CNG 73, Lot: 729. Estimate $500. 
Closing Date: Wednesday, 13 September 2006. 
Sold For $1250. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

CILICIA, Mopsouestia-Mopsus. Valerian I. AD 253-260. Æ 32mm (18.86 g, 12h). Dated CY 323 (AD 255/6). Radiate, draped, and cuirassed bust right / River-god Pyramus, holding cornucopia, reclining left on river bridge consisting of five arches; DWREA in spans, triumphal arches at either end. SNG France 2998; SNG Levante 1359. Good VF, black-green and red patina.

From the Alexandre de Barros Collection. Ex Classical Numismatic Group 39 (18 September 1996), lot 956 (where it realized $790).

The Greek word dwrea (gifts) indicates that the bridge was the result of imperial munificence. It is quite possible that, as the city was situated on a major route eastward into Commagene and Cyrrhestica, and consequently the Persian frontier, the bridge was constructed to ensure rapid deployment of Roman troops to the East.