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979727. BRUTTIUM, Kroton. Circa 350-300 BC. AR Nomos (23mm, 7.95 g, 9h). Eagle standing left on olive branch, head raised, wings spread / Tripod; KPO downward to left; Δ in right field. Attianese 118; HN Italy 2172; SNG ANS 361 (same dies); SNG Lloyd 621. Near EF, toned, edge ding. ($3500) Ex Stack’ (14 June 1993), lot 46. As with many cities in Magna Graecia, Kroton was established by colonists from mainland Greece. Myskellos, obeying a directive of the oracle of Delphi, led a group of Achaean settlers to the site and founded the city around 710 BC. This divine sanction is represented by the tripod of the oracle, which became the civic badge of Kroton and is widely featured on its coinage. Kroton was among the first cities to produce coinage in Italy, its earliest being of the incuse type struck on the Achaian standard. As evidenced by its bountiful coinage, Kroton was one of the most important and wealthy cities of southern Italy. Although its fortunes rose and fell over the centuries, it maintained its production of a wide array of denominations and metals until the Roman period.

979010. SICILY, Entella. Punic issues. Circa 407-398 BC. AR Tetradrachm (26mm, 17.67 g, 6h). Forepart of horse right, being crowned by Nike flying right; barley grain before / Palm tree with two date cluster; QRTHDST in Punic across field. Jenkins, Punic 23 (O6’/R23); HGC 2, 261. Good VF, lightly toned. Extremely well struck and centered, rare thus. ($13,500) Ian Lee (“Entella: The Silver Coinage of the Campanian Mercenaries and the Site of the First Carthaginian Mint 410-409 BC”, in NC 2000, p. 1-66) convincingly argues that the early Siculo-Punic issues were struck at Entella, the main base of Carthaginian forces in Sicily.

979011. SICILY, Himera. Circa 430 BC. AR Litra (9mm, 0.54 g, 7h). Bearded head right, wearing crested Attic helmet decorated with floral spray / Attic helmet right. HGC 2, 446; SNG ANS –; SNG Lloyd 1029 var. (helmet to left, same obv. die); Jameson 905. Good VF, toned. Struck in high relief. ($1250) Founded circa 649 BC by settlers from Zankle, Himera was the only Greek colony on the north coast of the island. On evidence of its late 6th century coinage it would appear to have enjoyed a high degree of prosperity at this time, despite the relative isolation of its position. As at the other two Chalkidian colonies (Naxos and Zankle), the standard denomination of Himera’s archaic coinage was the drachm of about 5.73 grams, being one-third of the Euboeic stater of 17.2 grams. It is generally assumed that the cock was the civic ‘badge’ of Himera, having been adopted in honor of the Euboian city of Karystos, perhaps the original home of many of the first colonists. In 483 BC, Himera was captured by Theron, tyrant of Akragas, and thereafter the crab of Akragas appeared as the reverse type on the coinage of Himera.

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CNG CNR July 2014