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CNG Feature Auction 115

Lot nuber 398

BAKTRIA, Greco-Baktrian Kingdom. Pantaleon Soter. Circa 185-180 BC. AR Tetradrachm (31mm, 16.88 g, 11h).

CNG Feature Auction 115
Lot: 398.
 Estimated: $ 50 000

Oriental Greek, Silver

Sold For $ 60 000. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

Go to Live

BAKTRIA, Greco-Baktrian Kingdom. Pantaleon Soter. Circa 185-180 BC. AR Tetradrachm (31mm, 16.88 g, 11h). Diademed and draped bust right / BAΣIΛEΩΣ to right, ΠANTAΛEONTOΣ to left, Zeus enthroned left, holding in right hand statue of Hekate, who holds torch in each hand, and scepter; monogram to inner left. Bopearachchi 1A = MIG Type 157a = HGC 12, 100 (same dies as illustration); Bopearachchi & Rahman 168 (same obv. die); SNG ANS –; Zeno –; NAC 77, lot 107 (same dies). In NGC encapsulation 5768164-002, graded Ch AU, Strike: 4/5, Surface: 4/5, Fine Style. With an attractive, high-relief portrait. Extremely rare and among the finest known.

Known only from his coins, the identity of this Greco-Bactrian king has long been a subject of debate. Some nineteenth century scholars, who were working with a more limited selection of coins, believed that Pantaleon, along with Agathokles, was a son of Diodotos I. But as more numismatic evidence came to light it was clear that kings such as Agathokles, Antimachos, and Pantaleon could not be part of the Diodotids who ruled in the early period of Bactrian independence from the Seleukids. The coinages of Pantaleon and Agathokles are similar in many respects, leading some authorities to suspect that they were relatives. The portrait on this tetradrachm, for example, is closely linked to those of Agathokles, suggesting there was an effort to demonstrate unity or solidarity. Pantaleon's well-modeled image is somewhat older and heavier than that of Agathokles, and has a less pronounced chin. A further indication that Pantaleon and Agathocles were closely associated is the fact that Agathokles struck pedigree tetradrachms for Pantaleon (as savior). This would suggest that Pantaleon was either a predecessor or a contemporary who died before Agathokles, whose coinage demonstrates that his reign was significantly longer than that of Pantaleon.

The five examples of this issue are known from one obverse and three reverse dies:

1. A/a
a. London, British Museum, inv. 1888,1208.108 [Bopearachchi 1A(illustration); MIG Type 157a; HGC 12, 100]
b. NAC 77, lot 107
c. CNG 115, lot 390 (the present example)

2. A/b
a. Triton I, lot 594

3. A/c
a. Bopearachchi & Rahman 168

The final winners of all CNG Feature Auction 115 lots will be determined during the live online sale that will be held on 16-17 September 2020. This lot is in Session 2, which begins 16 September 2020 at 2 PM ET.

Winning bids are subject to a 20% buyer's fee for bids placed on this website and 22.50% for all others.

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