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    Description

    Magnificent Euianetos Decadrachm

    SICILY. Syracuse. Time of Dionysius I (405-367 BC). AR decadrachm (36mm, 42.80 gm, 7h). Reverse die signed by Euainetos, ca. 400 BC. Racing quadriga driven left by charioteer, holding reins and kentron; in field above, Nike flying right to crown him; in exergue, military arms, including aspis (shield), greaves, cuirass, and crested Attic helmet, all joined by horizontal spear, ΑΘΛΑ ("prizes") below / ΣΥ-ΡΑ-ΚΟΣ-ΙΩΝ, head of Arethusa left, hair wreathed in barley ears, wearing triple pendant earring and beaded necklace, four dolphins around, Δ below chin, die-engraver's signature [EY- AI]NE below bottom dolphin. Gallatin 37 (DII - RIX). SNG Lloyd 1413 (same dies). HGC 2, 1299. A simply beautiful example of this classic issue, struck on a broad flan in sound metal, with none of the usual obverse die rust. A couple of unobtrusive light scratches, otherwise appealing original  surfaces with "find patina" largely intact. NGC AU 5/5 - 4/5, Fine Style.

    Originally from the collection of a French connoisseur, later acquired by an American collector and displayed at the E. H. Merrin Gallery in New York City in 1985.

    Under the brutal but capable Tyrant Dionysius I (406-367 BC), Syracuse had become the wealthiest and most powerful city-state in the Greek world, and chose this moment to introduce the most extravagant coins yet seen --  the stunning series of signed silver decadrachms. These huge, impressive coins were struck  to pay the Greek mercenaries who flooded Sicily to fight the expanding power of Carthage. The magnificent decadrachms of the master engraver Euainetos have become a paradigm for classical beauty in the 24 centuries since their creation. His Arethusa is the very ideal of feminine beauty, both human and divine, her hair interwoven with a wreath of grain ears symbolizing the agricultural bounty of Sicily. Likewise, the horses pulling his chariot seem to levitate above the ground line, perhaps preparing to draw the charioteer into the heavens themselves. 




    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    April, 2016
    14th-19th Thursday-Tuesday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 2
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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