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    Description

    Exquisite Sicyon Stater

    SICYONIA. Sicyon. Ca. 431-323 BC. AR stater (24mm, 12.17 gm, 12h). NGC Choice AU 5/5 - 5/5, Fine Style. Struck ca. 350-340 BC. Chimaera stalking to the left, right forepaw raised; above to right, wreath, ΣI below  / Dove flying right, Θ below wing, all within olive wreath. HGC 5, 197 (R1). BCD Peloponnesos 215. Rare variety with dove flying right. An exquisite example of this beautiful type, deeply struck in outstanding metal from dies of finest style, with lovely original cabinet toning on the obverse and mirror-like reverse fields.

    From the Northern California Collection. Acquired from Freeman & Sear, 2002.

    Sicyon, one of the oldest and most prosperous cities of the Peolponnesos, began striking its extensive silver coinage about 431 BC, its staters on the Aeginetic standard filling the void left when Aigina itself was conquered by Athens. The obverse usually bore the image of Chimaera, a vicious, fire-breathing monster combining the bodies of a lion, a goat and a serpent, that terrorized Lycia in mythical times until killed by the hero Bellerophon; the reverse was a far more peaceful image of a dove in flight within an olive wreath. The extensive silver coinage of Sicyon financed the anti-Athens Peloponnesian League and became one of the staple currencies of mainland Greece, along with Athenian "owls" and Corinthian "Pegasi." While the general run of Sicyon staters is fairly common, this is a rare variety with the dove on the reverse flying right instead of the usual left, and is dated to the mid-fourth century BC while Macedon was becoming the dominant force in Greece.


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    Auction Dates
    August, 2017
    3rd Thursday
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