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    Description

    Celtic High Water Mark

    CELTIC GAUL. The Parisii. Ca. 100-50 BC. AV stater (22mm, 7.36 gm, 3h).  Class IV. Celticized head of Apollo to right, with wavy hair and a floral ornament before / Disjointed and stylized horse galloping left, fan-like quatrefoil checkerboard design above. CdB fig. 14, 3 (same dies). D&T 81. De la Tour 7792. Very rare. A lovely stater from the high-water mark of Celtic coinage, struck on a broad flan. NGC Choice XF 5/5 - 3/5, Fine Style, edge filing.

    From The Providence Collection. Ex Classical Numismatic Group 85 (15 September 2010), 138.

    The Gallic tribe of the Parisii was centered in Lutetia, a village on an island in the Seine, and eventually gave its name to the great city that would grow up on the spot. While many British, Gallic and Danubian tribes produced coins of inimitable style, those of the Parisii are commonly acknowledged to be the most beautiful and distinctive of all Celtic coinages. Distantly based on the ubiquitous gold staters of Macedon struck by Philip II (359-336 BC), the design is highly evolved and features a  strikingly stylized male head with a flowing mane of lionine hair. The galloping horse on the reverse, its sinuous form resembling the famous "White Horse of Uffington" carved into a hilltop in Oxfordshire, England, bears a distinctive feature usually described as a "wing," festooned with a dotted checkerboard pattern, which may represent the "canopy of heaven." Twenty centuries after the heyday of Celtic culture, its unique artistic sensibilities would be reborn in the pioneering work of Picasso, Chagall and other "modern" artists. 


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    Auction Dates
    August, 2015
    13th Thursday
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