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CNG Feature Auction 117

Lot nuber 365

INDIA, Kushan Empire. Vima Kadphises. Circa AD 113-127. AV Dinar (19.5mm, 8.00 g, 12h). Bilingual Greek issue. Main mint in Baktria.

CNG Feature Auction 117
Lot: 365.
 Estimated: $ 12 500

Central Asian featuring The Archytas Collection, Coin-in-Hand Video, Gold

Sold For $ 18 000. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

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INDIA, Kushan Empire. Vima Kadphises. Circa AD 113-127. AV Dinar (19.5mm, 8.00 g, 12h). Bilingual Greek issue. Main mint in Baktria. BACIΛЄYC OO(blundered h)MO KAΔΦIChC, diademed and crowned half-length bust of Vima Kadphises right on clouds, flames at shoulder, holding mace-scepter in right hand; tamgha to left / Maharajasa rajadirajasa sarvaloga iśvarasa mahiśvarasa hima kaphthiśasa tradara[sa] in Kharosthi, ithyphallic Siva standing facing, head left, holding trident in right hand and resting left arm on bull Nandi behind, who is standing right with head facing; Buddhist triratana (Three Jewels) to left. Bopearachchi, Premiers, Série IV, 5-6; MK 2 (O1/R2) = FdS 2; ANS Kushan –; Donum Burns –. Traces of deposits, minor die breaks. Good VF. Extremely rare, only this coin in CoinArchives.

From the Archytas Collection. Ex Triton XI (8 January 2008), lot 369 (part of).

Göbl’s Type 2 was previously known from only a single example in the British Museum. The present two coins (this and the previous lot) are both from the same dies as the British Museum example; lot 365 shows the same obverse die state as the British Museum specimen, but surprisingly, lot 364 is from an earlier obverse die state with a quite different portrait. It is clear that lot 364 is from the same obverse die, for the details of the legend and the characteristic die flaws match precisely. However, the portrait is very different: it shows a smaller and less attractive head of the king, with his nose prominently hooked, his eye narrow, and his lip turned down at the corner. The die was later reworked, with the portrait re-engraved to enlarge the head, increase the relief, and present a more sculptural and idealized portrait, seen in lot 365 and the British Museum example. We can only speculate on the precise circumstances, but the inference seems inescapable that the king, having just instituted the first Kushan gold coinage, recognized the power of imagery on his coinage and moved quickly to replace the first unflattering portrait with a more appropriate representation of his eminence.

The final winners of all CNG Feature Auction 117 lots will be determined during the live online sale that will be held on 19-20 May 2021. This lot is in Session 2, which begins 19 May 2021 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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