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    Description

    Lexington Collection Specimen in Choice Mint State Fine Style

    MACEDONIAN KINGDOM. Philip II (359-336 BC). AV stater (18mm, 8.59 gm, 11h). NGC Choice MS 5/5 - 5/5, Fine Style. Late posthumous issue of Colophon, under Philip III Arrhidaeus, ca. 322 BC. Laureate head of Apollo right, with the features of Alexander III the Great / ΦΙΛΙΠΠΟΥ, charioteer driving galloping biga right, reins in left hand, kentron in right; tripod below right. Le Rider pl. 93, 26. SNG Alpha Bank 260. Thompson Philip p. 58 and pl. VI, 12. Rare. Among the finest known examples.

    Ex Lexington Collection of Jonathan K. Kern (Heritage Auction 3032, CICF, 10 April 2014), lot 23133.

    While the types of this gold stater issue of Colophon conform to the norm for Philip II (359-336 BC), the magnificent obverse die of this late posthumous issue of Colophon bears a portrait of "Apollo" that is quite distinctive and clearly depicts a real person. Comparison with the coins of Lysimachus and surviving portrait sculpture leaves no doubt the portrait represents Alexander III the Great himself. The issue seems intended to legitimize the patchwork Macedonian regime put together by Alexander's generals after his death in Babylon under the figurehead rulers Philip III Arrhidaeus, Alexander's slow-witted half-brother, and the infant Alexander IV, his posthumously born son. As such the "Philip" named on the reverse should probably be seen as referring to Arrhidaeus rather than the traditional attribution to Philip II.


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