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    Description

    Exceptional Starr Group V Owl

    ATTICA. Athens. Ca. 465-454 BC. AR tetradrachm (24mm, 16.95 gm, 2h).  Helmeted head of Athena right / AΘE, owl standing right, head facing; olive branch and crescent behind. Starr Group V.B, cf. 178. Toned. Nicely centered on a broad flan and of splendid style. NGC Choice AU 5/5 - 3/5, light smoothing.

    From The California Collection.

    Athenian "owls" of Star Groups III-V are among the most attractive of all Greek coins, from Athena's mysterious "archaic smile" to the wonderfully lifelike owl. These coins were introduced in the aftermath of the great Greek victories over Persia, led by Athens at Marathon and Salamis, and by Sparta at Plataea. In honor of these victories, Athena now appears with laurel leaves crowning her helmet, and a small crescent moon appears to the left of the owl. The crescent surely refers to the victory at Marathon in August or September of 490 BC. With the Persians having landed their invasion force, the Athenians asked for help from Sparta, but due to a religious festival the Spartan army would not march until the full moon arrived. Instead of waiting, the Athenian hoplites attacked on the own during the waning moon, and won a smashing victory. 


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    Auction Dates
    January, 2015
    4th-5th Sunday-Monday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 1
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