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    LUCANIA. Poseidonia. Ca. 530-500 BC. AR stater (28mm, 7.33 gm, 2h). ANACS EF40. ΠOΣ, Poseidon, bearded, with long plaited locks and nude save for chlamys wrapped around back and draped over both arms, striding right, brandishing trident held aloft in right hand and holding left arm extended, all within raised circular border with guilloche-pellet pattern / ΠOΣ (raised, retrograde), Poseidon striding left as on obverse, reversed and incuse. Gorini 3. Jameson 331. SNG ANS 604-5. Dewing 396. Historia Numorum Italy 1107. Gillet Collection 206 (same dies). Kraay-Hirmer 219. Well struck on an enormous flan of superior metal and possessing a pleasing deep iridescent tone. See Heritage Auctions 3061 (7-8 January 2018), lot 32006 for a similar example (realized $26,400).

    Poseidonia is one of the more mysterious Greek cities of Southern Italy, having apparently been founded circa 600 BC by colonists from nearby Sybaris. Its name and the choice of Poseidon as the main motif on its coinage suggests the sea god must have been widely worshipped in the city, likely at a central temple, although no such structure has yet been identified by archaeology. Its coinage was introduced about 530 BC on the highly unusual relief / incuse pattern employed by other contemporary South Italian Greek cities, notably its parent settlement of Sybaris. The striding Poseidon seen here can only be described as a masterpiece of Archaic art, closely resembling the marble and limestone kouroi figures adorning shrines and tombs in mainland Greece around this time. These, in turn, were inspired by Egyptian art, whose conventions can still be seen in the simultaneously frontal and sidelong pose of Poseidon.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    September, 2018
    6th-11th Thursday-Tuesday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 3
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 5,011

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