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    Description

    Ptolemy I 'Elephant' Stater

    PTOLEMAIC EGYPT. Ptolemy I Soter (305-281 BC). AV stater (17mm, 6.79 gm, 12h). Choice VF, ex mount. Cyrenaica, ca. 300-298 BC. Diademed head of Ptolemy I right, aegis around base of neck / ΠTOΛEMAIOY BAΣIΛEΩΣ, the deified Alexander the Great standing left, holding thunderbolt, in car of chariot drawn to left by four elephants, Δ-O monogram and TI in exergue. Svoronos 133 and Plate IV, 21. Jenkins, Phacous, group G-10. Edges trimmed and smoothed, and corresponding edge marks suggesting jewelry wear, otherwise a presentable and affordable specimen of this historic type.

    The gigantic figure driving the elephant cart on the reverse has been variously identified as Zeus (since he holds a thunderbolt) or the deified Alexander the Great. The face of the figure is seldom struck up well enough to show much detail, however this example is sharp enough to show the driver is a beardless young male, hence probably Alexander, now deified and of superhuman size (he towers over the elephants pulling the chariot!). Alexander's body was hijacked from a funeral cortege headed back to Macedon by Ptolemy I, who interred the conqueror's corpse in Memphis. Later Ptolemaic rulers moved his body to Alexandria and replaced his golden sarcophagus with a crystal one housed within an elaborate tomb.


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    Auction Dates
    August, 2017
    3rd Thursday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 2
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