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    Description

    Exceptional 'Helmeted Hero' Tetradrachm

    SELEUCID KINGDOM. Seleucus I Nicator (312-281 BC). AR tetradrachm (26mm, 17.22 gm, 11h). Susa, circa 305-295 BC. Head of Seleucus I right, wearing Attic helmet covered with panther skin and adorned with bull's horns and ear, panther skin tied around neck / ΒΑΣΙΛΕΩΣ ΣΕΛΕΥΚΟΥ, Nike standing right, crowning trophy of arms, M to lower left, AX between Nike and trophy. SC 173.4. HGC 9 20. A superb specimen of this scarce and intriguing issue, well struck and atractively toned. NGC AU 5/5 - 5/5.

    Debate has long swirled regarding the identity of the 'helmeted hero' appearing on the obverse of this type - is it Seleucus I himself, or Alexander the Great, or a composite demigod incorporating features of Seleucus, Alexander and Dionysus? In the new Handbook of Syrian Coins (CNG, 2009), Oliver Hoover opts for identifying the portrait as an idealized image of Seleucus himself. The reverse design of Nike crowning trophy, shown with exemplary centering and unusual clarity in this example, was inspired by a nearly simultaneous issue of the Syracusan tyrant Agathocles thousands of miles away.


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    Auction Dates
    January, 2014
    5th-6th Sunday-Monday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 1
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