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Serpent staff

(1 coin)

53225 Order
Caracalla, Aigeai, Cilicia, 215-216 A.D.
AR Tetradrachm, 13.31g. 29mm. Struck in Aigeai, Cilicia, Dated: year 262=215/216 A.D. Diademed bust of Asclepius to right; serpent staff to right. Greek inscription," The Antonine City of Aigeai." Rev. Asclepius standing to left holding serpent staff; Telesphorus to left and goat to right. Greek inscription," Of noble and Macedonian origin."

Florian Haymann, Untersuchungen Zur Geschichte und Identitätskonstruktion von Aigeai im Römischen Kilikien (20 v.-280 n. CHR) , 101a.1(this coin listed)= Prieur 723 = SNG Levante 1741 (this coin). H. Bloesch, "Caracalla in Aigeai," in Congresso internazionale di numismatica Roma, 1961, vol. 2: Atti (Rome: 1965), pp. 307-8, pl. 23, 1 var. (date format)= Winterthur museum, G 4535. Gitta Kastner, Munich, Auction 4, November 27, 1973, lot 165 (this coin now in the British Museum= London, 1975, 0930.2 )

The sanctuary of Asclepius in Aigeai was already widely known by the 2nd century and mentioned by Serenus Sammonicus in his Liber Medicinalis. It was considered to be a triad with the Asklepions in Pergamon and Epidauros. Serenus was a tutor to Caracalla and Geta, but he was murdered in 211 during the purge of Caracalla. (Cf. Hayman, p. 157 and note 1085). Caracalla who suffered ill health visited the Askelpion in Pergamon in 214 and perhaps may have visited Aigeai on the same journey giving rise to an occasion for striking this issue.

An unusual and spectacular coin, being the finest of three known and the only example in private hands; attractive collection toning.

Ex: Numismatic Fine Arts, Beverly Hills, Auction 16, 1985, lot 496
Ex: Edoardo Levante collection, published SNG Levante 1741. See more detailed image
Extremely Fine $20,000.00

 

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