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    Pedigree Issue of Euthydemus I

    BACTRIAN KINGDOM. Agathocles (ca. 185-170 BC). AR tetradrachm (16.56 gm). NGC Choice AU, 5/5 - 2/5, Fine Style, scratches. "Pedigree issue" commemorating Euthydemus I (ca. 230-200 BC). ΕΥΘΥΔΗΜΟΥ-ΘΕΟΥ, diademed head of the deified Euthydemus I right / BAΣIΛEΥONTOΣ-AΓAΘOKΛEOYΣ-ΔIKAIOY, Heracles seated left on rock, club in right hand supported by small rock to left of leg; ΦΛ monogram in lower right field. Bopearachchi Série 16B. SNG ANS 261. Extremely rare.

    With this rare "pedigree" tetradrachm, Agathocles honors his predecessor Euthydemus I, one of the few Greco-Bactrian rulers for whom there are historical records other than coinage. The historian Polybius records that a certain Euthydemus of Magnesia, satrap of Sogdonia, overthrew Diodotus II, son of the kingdom's founder, in about 230-223 BC. In 208 BC his realm was invaded by the Seleucid monarch Antiochus III the Great, who sought to bring the rebel Bactrian kingdom to heel. Though he commanded a cavalry arm of 10,000 horseman, Euthydemus lost an initial battle against Antiochus and withdrew to the fortified city of Bactra. Antiochus laid siege to the city, but after three years it had still not fallen, and he was forced to conclude a treaty with Euthydemus by which he married his daughter to the rebel king's son, Demetrius. The Seleucid king reportedly even praised Euthydemus for protecting the Greek-ruled kingdoms from the nomadic warrior hordes of the Far East. Euthydemus went on to rule until about 195 BC, when he was succeeded by Demetrius. Both Agathocles and his co-ruler (or rival) Antimachus struck pedigree coins honoring Euthydemus, but it is unlikely either had any blood connection to his dynasty. 


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    Auction Dates
    November, 2017
    16th Thursday
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