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Countermarked examples shown separately at the end of this presentation

Ptolemy I-II - Alexandria and Other Mints - Pre-Reform ca. 280-265BC

This denomination series consists of two coin sizes in certain series and up to five sizes in others. They share two denominations in common; the laureate Zeus 'diobol' (ca. 16gm) and an Alexander wearing elephantskin headdress 'obol' (ca. 8gm). The coins we normally assign to Ptolemy I have no leg control letters but only letters and monograms to the left of the eagle (shown at left) and may consist of up to four sizes. There are numerous leg control letters in the second two series with SIGMA over shield and SIGMA over shield over XA(P) we assign to Ptolemy II. There are clearly related types of diobols and obols throughout this period with linked control marks and other symbols placed similarly and spanning both sizes. This coinage begins at an indeterminate time perhaps as early as about 290BC and dominated the bronze issues for perhaps 30 years or longer. The presumed order of temporal succession is shown left to right. We believe the earliest are the types with only letters or monograms to the left of the eagle, likely begun under Ptolemy I and continued into the reign of Ptolemy II. These are followed by the series of Ptolemy II with SIGMA over a Galatian shield, and ending with the series with an additional complex monogram under the shield (XAP). One similar set that display SIGMA over shield over SIGMA IOTA. It consists of only two coin: Sv554 (ALPHA/PHI control) and Sv564 (DELTA control - shown here), both diobols. None of these early coins show the distinctive central depressions seen on the later 'post-reform' series. Nor is the familiar cornucopia in evidence. The post-reform series (see below) appear to adopt mintmarks (combinatinons of club, cornucopiae, and/or monogram) with central depressions indicating a new method of manufacture, and the later series reflect more extensive groups of denominations and sizes both much larger as well as smaller. It is likely that most are issues of Alexandria, . with some indications of provincial mints on smaller issues (symbols such as club, helmet, aplustre, etc.) This is a remarkable group in that there are over 80 catalogued types with different control letter and monogram combinations.
gae403_o
gae403_r
28mm - 15.2gm
A - Sv184
IG - Sv193
L/M - Sv206
G - Sv213
PI/Y - Sv219
PHI - Sv230
A/various - Sv269-303
S - Sv550
gae941_o
gae941_r
22mm - 7.6gm
D - Sv186
DI - Sv188
A - Sv196
M/I - Sv202
S - Sv215
PI/Y - Sv220
PI/Y - Sv225
TI - Sv226
XA - Sv235
EP - Sv237
EY/KL - Sv356
EY/M - Sv360
EY/XAP - Sv363
EY/KI/XAP - Sv377
ST/KI/A - Sv379
gae898_o
gae898_r
18mm - 3.8gm
L/PI - Sv51
OT - Sv119
PI T - Sv130
TI - Sv135
TS - Sv136
DI - Sv189
HP - Sv238
Club/AG - Sv628
Aplustre/Helmet - Sv172
gae932_o
gae932_r
13mm - 1.9gm
HP - Sv239 'B' - Not Catalogued in Svoronos
NOTE - Sv239, with HP monogram, is also small and this weight, but has the long-haired Alexander.
gae899_o
gae899_r
10mm - 1gm
PI (ALE inscription) - Sv53
gae955_o
gae955_r
28mm - 15.2gm
A/T - Sv553
PI/A - Sv556
A - Sv560
D - Sv563
E - Sv568
Th - Sv571
I - Sv576
L - Sv580
O - Sv586
RHO - Sv593
Y - Sv598
none - Sv600
PHI - known but not in Svoronos
PSI - known but not in Svoronos
gae924_o
gae924_r
20mm - 7.6gm
D - Sv565
none - Sv601
gae324_o
gae324_r
28mm - 15.2gm
PI/A - Sv557
A - Sv561
Th - Sv572
I - Sv577
L - Sv581
O - Sv587
G - Sv589
T - Sv594
K - known but not in Svoronos
gae380_o
gae380_r
20mm - 7.6gm
A - Sv562
D - Sv565
L - Sv582
none - Sv602
gae931_o
gae931_r
28mm - 15.2gm
PI/A - Sv554
DELTA - Sv564

Ptolemy II - Sicily & Syracuse - Pre-Reform ca. 270-260BC

This denomination series consists a small series of enigmatic style and a single denomination. On most of these types the control, if present, is placed near the tail of the eagle. An additional type not shown here has the control (NK or Phi) above or below the shield. There is very convincing evidence that these coins were issued by Hieron II of Syracuse: the style of laureate Zeus is quite different from the preceding groups (see above), they are found only in Sicily, control placement is unusual, die axes are highly variable, most types have a reverse with a solid circle border, there is no obol denomination, the 'cupped' reverse manufacturing style resembles that of Hieron's portrait bronzes, and there are shared controls (N and PHI) between these coins and some Hieron portrait bronzes. The Zeus portrait style is also artistically similar to the Poseidon portraits of Hieron's smaller coinage with trident and dolphins on the reverse, distinctly Sicilian in style and quite easily distinguished from contemporary Egyptian Zeus portraiture. A paper on this very interesting group of coins is available via a link on the home page of The PtolemAE project. The dating and duration of issue for this series is problematic, beginning no earlier than 275BC but terminating at a time that is yet to be determined.
gae775_o
gae775_r
28mm - 17.1gm
none - Sv610
Type I - Dotted reverse border
Egyptian Style
gae279_o
gae279_r
28mm - 17.1gm
none - Sv610
Type II - Solid reverse border
Egyptian Style
gae371_o
gae371_r
28mm - 17.1gm
none - Sv610
Type III - Circle reverse border
Sicilian Style
gae563_o
gae563_r
28mm - 17.1gm
N Below Shield - Sv620
Sicilian Style

gae616_o
gae616_r
28mm - 17.1gm
N Near Tail - Sv619
Style of Sv620

gae404_o
gae404_r
28mm - 17.1gm
N near tail - Sv619
Type I - Dotted reverse border
Hieronian Style
gae348_o
gae348_r
28mm - 17.1gm
N - Sv619
Type II - Circle reverse border
Hieronian Style
gae347_o
gae347_r
28mm - 17.1gm
A near tail - Sv615
Hieronian Style
gae325_o
gae325_r
28mm - 17.1gm
PHI - Sv623
Hieronian Style

Ptolemy II
Alexandria Post-Reform ca. 260BC Series 3

This denomination series consists of at least 7 coin sizes. There are numerous leg monograms (Theta, Lamda, Iota, Rho, Delta, etc.) in this series so various nice examples are presented here from the PtolemAE collection (one size substituted by a comparable style issue of Tyre - see below). Svoronos catalog numbers are numerous and not all sizes are known in all monogram varieties. Sizes and weights shown here are the 'nominal ideal' for the types. Actual sizes and weights may vary somewhat due to the striking and manufacturing technology at the time. The idea here is to present the coins as a coherent series. You may also view these same coins with detailed information about each one elsewhere on the PtolemAE Project web site. Monograms are abbreviated in English below (nm=NONE, A=ALPHA, B=BETA, D=DELTA, E=EPSILON, I=IOTA, Th=THETA, L=LAMDA, P=RHO, T=TAU, Y=UPSILON, O=OMICRON, X=CHI, W=OMEGA). Some examples show a combination UPSILON/TAU (Y with a cross mark) monogram. When viewing the Tyre, Sidon, and Ptolemais series below note that the main design types largely match the Alexandria series which makes these all fit together into a picture of one coherent coinage. The provincial mint series do not have any leg monograms but all show the typical mintmark indications of their locations.
gae246_o
gae246_r
42mm - 68.4gm
Sv413 - nm
Sv422 - A
Sv431 - B
Sv437 - D
Sv447 - E
Sv457 - I
Sv463 - Th
Sv464 - Th/ME
Sv479 - L
Sv497 - P
Sv504 - T
Sv504 - Y/T
Sv514 - X
gae981_o
gae981_r
38mm - 45.6gm
Sv414 - nm
Sv448 - E
Sv480 - L
Sv505 - T or Y/T
Sv515 - X
gae072_o
gae072_r
30mm - 22.8gm
Sv415 - nm
Sv423 - A
Sv438 - D
Sv449 - E
Sv465 - Th(O)
Sv466 - ME/Th
Sv481 - L
Sv498 - P
Sv506 - T or Y/T
GAE954_o
GAE954_r
24mm - 11.4gm
Sv424 - A
Sv439 - D
Sv450 - E
Sv467 - Th
Sv482 - L
Sv493 - O
Sv499 - P
Sv507 - T
Sv511 - Y
Sv519 - W
gae533_o
gae533_r
20mm - 8gm
Sv416 - nm
Sv425 - A
Sv440 - D
Sv451 - E
Sv468 - T
Sv473 - I
Sv483 - L
Sv493 - O
Sv500 - P
gae365_o
gae365_r
18mm - 5.7gm
Sv417 - nm
Sv441 - D
Sv452 - E
Sv469 - Th
Sv473 - I
Sv484 - L
Sv501 - P
gae586_o
gae586_r
15mm - 2.9gm
Sv418 - nm
Sv431 - B
Sv442 - D
Sv453 - E
Sv470 - Th(O)
Sv474 - I
Sv485 - L
Sv493 - O

Ptolemy II
Sidon Double Cornucopia - Series 3

This denomination series consists of at least 5 coins with double cornucopiae as the prominent feature of the reverse that distinguishes these from the parallel Alexandria series. Sizes and weights shown here are the 'nominal ideal' for the types. Actual sizes and weights may vary somewhat due to the striking and manufacturing technology at the time. The idea here is to present the coins as a coherent series. You may also view these same coins with detailed information about each one elsewhere on the PtolemAE Project web site.
gae825_o
gae825_r
42mm - 68.4gm
Sv758 - Double Cornucopia on eagle shoulder
gae744_o
gae744_r
38mm - 45.6gm
Sv759 - Double Cornucopia in left field
gae686_o
gae686_r
30mm - 22.8gm
Sv760 - Double Cornucopia on eagle shoulder
gae583_o
gae583_r
24mm - 11.4gm
Sv763 - Double Cornucopia in left field. This type may actually be Ptolemy I or belong to an issue without center depressions prior to about 265BC.
gae262_o
gae262_r
24mm - 11.4gm
Sv761 - Double Cornucopia in left field
gae472_o
gae472_r
20mm - 5.7gm
Sv762 - Double Cornucopia on eagle shoulder
gae351_o
gae351_r
17mm - 3.8gm
Sv??? - Double Cornucopia on eagle shoulder. Uncatalogued type - uncertain if it belongs to this series or a later issue of Ptolemy IV or V. Appears to be a member of this series.

Ptolemy II
Tyre Double Cornucopia/Club Series 3

This denomination series consists of at least 5 coins with double cornucopiae as the prominent feature of the reverse that distinguishes these from the parallel Alexandria series. In addition this series features a club in the left field to distinguish them from the Sidon series coins. Svoronos attributed these to Gaza but the typical club feature of other Ptolemaic Tyre coins and find locations in and around Lebanon seems to indicate they are from the major Ptolemaic mint in Tyre. Sizes and weights shown here are the 'nominal ideal' for the types. Actual sizes and weights may vary somewhat due to the striking and manufacturing technology at the time. The idea here is to present the coins as a coherent series. You may also view these same coins with detailed information about each one elsewhere on the PtolemAE Project web site.
gae131_o
gae131_r
42mm - 68.4gm
Sv834 - Double Cornucopia on eagle shoulder, club in left field
GAE953_o
GAE953_r
38mm - 45.6gm
Sv835 - Double Cornucopia and club in left field
gae522_o
gae522_r
30mm - 22.8gm
SvXXX - Double cornucopia on eagle shoulder and club in left field - not catalogued in Svoronos or any other reference. Three known specimens.
gae224_o
gae224_r
24mm - 11.4gm
Sv836 - Double cornucopia and club in left field
gae0
gae0
20mm - 5.7gm
Sv837 - Double cornucopia on eagle shoulder with club in left field. It is likely this type does not really exist.
gae558_o
gae558_r
16mm - 5.7gm
Sv838 - Cornucopia on eagle shoulder and club in left field

Ptolemy II
Ake Ptolemais Double Cornucopia/Circled-PI-TAU Series 3

This denomination series consists of only 3 coin types with double cornucopiae as the prominent feature of the reverse that distinguishes these from the parallel Alexandria series and unifies them with Tyre and Sidon (see above). In addition this series features a CIRCLE-PI-TAU monogram in the left field identifying them as originating from Ake Ptolemais. In contrast to the related denomination series from Sidon and Tyre, only these 3 sizes and weight denominations are known. Sizes and weights shown here are the 'nominal ideal' for the types. Actual sizes and weights may vary somewhat due to the striking and manufacturing technology at the time. The idea here is to present the coins as a coherent series. The last coin shown has a somewhat different style and might reflect an issue of a later reign, possibly Ptolemy V.
gae275_o
gae275_r
42mm - 68.4gm
Sv788 - Double Cornucopia on eagle shoulder with CIRCLE-PI-TAU in left field
gae370_o
gae370_r
38mm - 45.6gm
Sv789 - Double Cornucopia and CIRCLE-PI-TAU in left field
gae625_o
gae625_r
30mm - 22.8gm
Sv790 - Double cornucopia on eagle shoulder and CIRCLE-PI-TAU in left field.
gae276_o
gae276_r
30mm - 18gm?
Sv790v - Double cornucopia on eagle shoulder and CIRCLE-PI-TAU in left field.

Ptolemy II - DELTA IOTA /AI Series

This denomination series consists of several types which may reflect issues over more than one reign. The coins are enigmatic singly and when considered together, with the DELTA IOTA in common but some also showing a 'palm branch' or a star in combination with the letter pair. Their origin is uncertain but likely a Phoenician mint. The two largest coins depicting laureate Zeus are consistent with early Ptolemy II diobols, though a bit light, but the smallest types may have central depressions indicating a later mintage (after ca. 260BC). Stylistically all are compatible with Ptolemy II but the smaller pieces could be issues as late as Ptolemy IV. The smallest denomination appears to be a depiction of Arsinoe, veiled, but which Arsinoe (I, II, or III) is unclear. Whether the DELTA IOTA letter pair on these coins is related to the same pair found as control letters in the eagle legs on coins of Ptolemy IV is also not known. The two smallest specimens here appear to show LAMDA IOTA, though it could well be these are simply slightly unclear versions of the DELTA IOTA. The two coins with DELTA IOTA over palm branch are clearly related and in the same sense as we see on other early Ptolemy I-II diobol/obol relationships. All are rare.
gae653_o
gae653_r
30mm - 11.4gm
Sv341 - DELTA IOTA at left
gae654_o
gae654_r
30mm - 15gm
Sv381 - DELTA IOTA over a palm branch at left
gae820_o
gae820_r
21mm - 8gm
Sv382 - DELTA IOTA over a palm branch at left
gae460_o
gae460_r
23mm - 8gm
Sv384 - DELTA IOTA (LAMDA IOTA?) over star over PI-Y at left
gae569_o
gae569_r
18mm - 3.8gm
Sv351 - AI over X (or XA monogram) at left
gae980_o
gae980_r
17mm - 4.8gm
Not in Svoronos - AI over ZETA at left

Ptolemy II - III - Proto-Natabaean Overstrikes

This group is not, strictly speaking, a particular denomination series of one ruler. They demonstrate that early Nabataean coinage seems to have relied on existing circulating Ptolemaic coins, particularly those of Ptolemy II and III, to serve as flans. These coins are fairly scarce and the overstriking (of a type sometimes attributed to Aretas II, Athena obverse over standing Nike reverse) almost always obliterates the undertype to a degree that makes the undertype not specifically identifiable. In very rare cases we can be absolutely certain about the undertype and can see that they are (usually small) coins of Ptolemy II and III. It appears there are also coins of Ptolemy IV that have been used but are not shown here. These very interesting types tell us that Nabataean coinage appears to have started no earlier than about 200BC but perhaps earlier than is clear from the (presumably later) types that are not overstruck. The types of Ptolemy II shown here (at left) are most likely either Svoronos 417 (Zeus / open-wing eagle) and possibly others with control letters no longer visible. The coins at right are likely (and some clearly identifiable) types of Ptolemy III. Two coins show the typical cornucopia at the left of the eagle and with one coin displaying the CHI-RHO. The coins shown here are oriented to show the Ptolemaic coin undertype. Interestingly, some of the coins are struck in a 'reverse sense' (obverse Nabataean type on reverse of Ptolemaic type) and others are 'normal sense' overstrikes.
gae765_o
gae765_r
22mm - 7.6gm
Likely Sv 416 - Open wing eagle reverse, Ptolemy II
gae637b_o
gae637b_r
19mm - 3.8gm
Likely Sv 417 - Open wing eagle reverse, Ptolemy II
gae641_o
gae641_r
16mm - 3.8gm
Sv??? - Closed wing eagle reverse, possibly Ptolemy III
gae632_o
gae632_r
18mm - 2.9gm
Sv??? - Closed-wing eagle reverse, possibly Ptolemy III
gae748_o
gae748_r
18mm - 3.8gm
Sv969 - CHI-RHO monogram
gae648_o
gae648_r
15mm - 2.9gm
Sv970 - CHI-RHO monogram

Ptolemy II - Ptolemy III - Ptolemy IV Queen Portraits

These coins are not all from one 'denomination series', but they are sensibly grouped here to show the 3rd C. BC depictions of Ptolemaic Queen portraits on smaller bronze coins. Two coins (left) are fairly early Asia Minor issues depicting Arsinoe, one during the occupation of Northern Thrace and another during the brief period that Ephesos was renamed 'Arsinoeia'. Another group of four types follows with portraits of Berenike, likely issued at Ras Ibn Hani (Syria) during its occupation by either Ptolemy II or III. These coins are all not all that well-understood and they are unusual for Ptolemaic bronzes in that they have an obverse inscription naming the Queen. Note that some have the PTOLEMAIOY written in the opposite direction usually seen on Ptolemaic bronzes. They all lack the central depressions which might imply they all precede 260BC, however the Berenike portrait coins could be from the time of the 3rd Syrian war, from 246-241BC. The coin furthest to the right is a common coin of Ptolemy IV, likely depicting Arsinoe III as Aphrodite.
gae882_o
gae882_r
12mm - 1.6gm
Sv387
gae851_o
gae851_r
17mm - 2.8gm
Sv883
gae866_o
gae866_r
21mm - 8.2gm
Sv1055
NOTE - Normal PTOLEMAIOY orientation
gae663_o
gae663_r
21mm - 7.6gm
Sv1055
NOTE - Reversed PTOLEMAIOY orientation
gae888_o
gae888_r
18mm - 3.9gm
Sv1056v - no EY
NOTE - Reversed PTOLEMAIOY orientation
gae832_o
gae832_r
16mm - 4.6gm
Sv1056 - with EY
NOTE - Reversed PTOLEMAIOY orientation
gae286_o
gae286_r
16mm - 2.7gm
Sv1160-1161

Ptolemy III
Alexandria EPSILON or LAMDA or 'Plain' Series 4

This denomination series consists of at least 7 coins that comprise a denomination series for which most sizes exist as both EPSILON and LAMDA monogram types. The two largest sizes are also known in 'no monogram' types. The E monogram types are also well known to exist in some variations with closed loops at the top of the E and similar morphologies. The 2nd size E monogram (Sv974 and variants of the E morphology) coins are very plentiful, among the most common types of Ptolemaic bronzes. The third size is a denomination only recently discovered through metrological analysis - a 20-chalkous (2.5 obol) coin. The data are quite conclusive on this; the coins average about 28.5 grams, far less than the 'expected' weight of 34.2 grams were they actually hemidrachms, as they have been previously catalogued in all reference works. Here are shown a mix of both of the most prevalent monograms (E and LAMDA) to illustrate the full denomination series. Lorber has attributed these coins to the early part of the reign of Ptolemy III while some other references differ. Sizes and weights shown here are the 'nominal ideal' for the types. Actual sizes and weights may vary somewhat due to the striking and manufacturing technology at the time. The idea here is to present the coins as a coherent series. You may also view these same coins with detailed information about each one elsewhere on the PtolemAE Project web site. In the following tabular presentation, the following indicate monogram types: E = EPSILON, L = LAMDA, nm = NONE.
gae972_o
gae972_r
48mm - 91.2gm
Sv412 - nm
Sv446 - E(and var)
Sv478 - L
Sv482 - THETA
Sv502 - S (existence doubtful)
A - known but not in Svoronos
gae534_o
gae534_r
40mm - 45.6gm
Sv1172 - nm
Sv1166 - L
Sv974 - E(var)
A - known but not in Svoronos
C - known but not in Svoronos
gae856_o
gae856_r
34mm - 28.5gm
Sv1167 - L
SV974a - E
A - SNG Cop 222
nm - known but not in Svoronos
gae245_o
gae245_r
30mm - 22.8gm
Sv1168 - L
gae865_o
gae865_r
28mm - 16gm
Sv1169 - L
Sv975 - E(var)
C - known but not in Svoronos
gae543_o
gae543_r
24mm - 11.4gm
Sv1170 - L
Sv976 - E(var)
C - known but not in Svoronos
gae253_o
gae245_r
20mm - 5.7gm
Sv1171 - L

Ptolemy III
Alexandria Cornucopia with CHI/RHO and PLAIN (No Control) Series 5

This denomination series consists of 8 coins all with the well-known CHI/RHO leg monogram and corresponding coins with no monogram (rare, not all sizes known). Most references agree that the attribution of all of these coins are to the mid or later part of the reign of Ptolemy III. Sizes and weights shown here are the 'nominal ideal' for the types. Actual sizes and weights may vary somewhat due to the striking and manufacturing technology at the time. The idea here is to present the coins as a coherent series. You may also view these same coins with detailed information about each one elsewhere on the PtolemAE Project web site. We show here the Chi/Rho monogram abbreviated as XP and the plain or no-monogram type as: nm.
gae660_o
gae660_r
42mm - 68.4gm
Sv964 - XP
Sv1002 - nm
gae566_o
gae566_r
36mm - 34.3gm
Sv965 - XP
Sv1003 - nm
gae289_o
gae289_r
30mm - 22.8gm
Sv966 - XP
Sv1004 - nm
gae231_o
gae231_r
24mm - 11.4gm
Sv967 - XP
nm type not known.
gae699_o
gae699_r
20mm - 5.7gm
Sv968 - XP
nm type known but not catalogued in Svoronos.
gae620_o
gae620_r
16mm - 3.8gm
Sv969 - XP
nm type known but not catalogued in Svoronos.
gae341_o
gae341_r
15mm - 2.9gm
Sv970 - XP
nm type ?
gae649_o
gae649_r
12mm - 1gm
Sv971 - XP
nm type ?

Ptolemy III
Tyre Club Series 5

This denomination series consists of 6 coins all with the well-known club mintmark in the left field on the reverse. These coins parallel the Alexandria series of CHI/RHO coins with cornucopia in the left field. Svoronos attributes these to Ptolemy II but the style and parallelism to the Ptolemy III CHI/RHO series seem to indicate Ptolemy III is more likely. Sizes and weights shown here are averages that are correct the types. Note that Svoronos 710 doesn't actually exist - it was erroneously 'created' by Svoronos as a type between 709 and 711 but there is no such thing. The few examples of Sv710 that have been recorded are Sv709 but at the lighter end of its weight range. Actual sizes and weights may vary somewhat due to the striking and manufacturing technology at the time. The idea here is to present the coins as a coherent series. You may also view these same coins with detailed information about each one elsewhere on the PtolemAE Project web site. As with the coinage from provincial mints by Ptolemy II, this series lacks leg monograms. These might be contemporaneous with either the scarce no-monogram cornucopia types of Alexandria or the CHI/RHO series or both. The CHI/RHO cornucopia coinage of Alexandria is a dominant and prodigious coinage as are most of these.
gae128_o
gae128_r
42mm - 68.4gm
Sv705
gae671_o
gae671_r
36mm - 34.3gm
Sv706
gae259_o
gae259_r
30mm - 22.8gm
Sv707
gae929_o
gae929_r
24mm - 11.4gm
Sv708
gae232_o
gae232_r
20mm - 5.7gm
Sv709
gae0_o
gae0_r
Svoronos mistakenly identified a coin type between 709 and 711. It doesn't actually exist.
18mm - 3.8gm
(Sv710)
gae510_o
gae510_r
16mm - 2.9gm
Sv711

Ptolemy III
Trident Series 5

This denomination series consists of 3 small coins one with Alexander in elephantskin obverse and two smaller pieces with an identical appearance, differing only in size/weight. The largest coin with Alexander in elephantskin headdress on the obverse is enigmatic and catalogued as a later issue in Svoronos (Svoronos 1063). Nevertheless its cornucopia at shoulder reverse is analogous to some small issues of Ptolemy III. It is extremely rare and its reignal attribution is subject to further analysis. Ashton's report on Ptolemaic bronzes at Fethiye (Turkey) reported a large number of trident coins of the two smaller types. The two smaller coins, likely from Turkey, show the familiar Zeus Ammon obverse, accompanied by a closed wing eagle and a trident on the reverse. These coins are attributed by Svoronos to Berytos (Beirut) but modern finds indicate they are most likely from the area near (modern) Bodrum in Turkey. Ptolemaic possessions during the 3rd C. BC were scattered around the Mediterranean and these are likely coins from one of the Ptolemaic settlements of that time. See the book by Roger Bagnall on Ptolemaic possessions outside Egypt. All are relatively scarce.
gae893_o
gae893_r
20mm - 5.7gm
Sv1063
gae722_o
gae722_r
15mm - 2.9gm
Sv839
gae320_o
gae320_r
12mm - 1.5gm
Sv840

Ptolemy III
Joppa Mint Harpa Series 5

This denomination series consists of 4 small coins all with an identical appearance, differing only in size/weight. The familiar Zeus Ammon obverse is accompanied by a closed wing eagle and a 'harpa' mintmark of Joppa (Jaffa) on the reverse. The largest size, ca. 11.4gm, is not shown here and is known from a single example, not catalogued in major references, ex. Don Doswell's collection sold at the Gemini Sale 2009. All are relatively scarce. Three sizes catalogued by Svoronos are 818 (ca. 5.5gm), 819 (ca. 2.8gm), and 820 (ca. 1.4gm).
gae619_o
gae619_r
16mm - 2.9gm
Sv819
gae457_o
gae457_r
15mm - 1.5gm
Sv820

Ptolemy III - Royal Portrait Series 5

This denomination series consists of only 4 coins, all with very similar appearance but differing in size/weight. The familiar Zeus Ammon obverse is replaced with a portrait of Ptolemy III wearing the aegis and the reverse is the usual style of Ptolemy III wearing a closed-wing eagle and the cornucopia reignal symbol. These are found in the area of Corinth and likely minted locally for use by Ptolemaic settlements there at that time. The largest size (Svoronos 997) is about 17gm and not shown here. The middle size has two variants (Svoronos 998 and 999) which have the cornucopia on opposing sides of the eagle. Svoronos 998 and 999 (the two middle sized types with cornucopiaea on opposites sides) are shown here. The smallest size is about 6gm and also not shown here. The appearance of a contemporary Ptolemaic ruler's portrait on a bronze coin is unusual and may be unique to this series. These two are likely denominated as tritartemorion (six chalkoi) on the post-260BC weight standard. The largest size would seem to be a tri-hemiobol (ca. 17.2gm) and the smallest a hemiobol (ca 5.7gm).
gae0_o
gae0_r
28mm - 17.2gm
Sv997 (cornucopia at left)
gae377_o
gae377_r
23mm - 8.6gm
Sv998 (cornucopia at right)
gae792_o
gae792_r
23mm - 8.6gm
Sv999 (cornucopia at left)
gae925_o
gae925_r
20mm - 5.7gm
Sv1000 (cornucopia at right)

Ptolemy III - Aphrodite Statue Series 5

This denomination series consists of 5 coins all with an identical appearance, differing only in size/weight. The familiar Zeus Ammon obverse is accompanied by a 'cult statue of Aphrodite' on the reverse.
gae384_o
gae384_r
30mm - 17.1gm
Sv1005
gae302_o
gae302_r
25mm - 11.4gm
Sv1006
gae683_o
gae683_r
20mm - 5.7gm
Sv1007
gae692_o
gae692_r
17mm - 2.9gm
Sv1008
gae304_o
gae304_r
15mm - 2gm
Sv1009

Ptolemy III-IV - Tripod Series 5

This denomination series consists of coins all with similar appearance, differing only in size/weight. The largest coin is uncatalogued and somwhat (stylistically speaking) enigmatic. It is somewhat heavier and larger than Svoronos 791, and its reignal attribution is subject to further analysis, tentatively attributed here to Ptolemy IV on the basis of its reverse lettering style and rather different style, somewhat more crude, of the tripod. The two smaller coin types show the familiar Zeus Ammon obverse, accompanied by a closed wing eagle and a trident on the reverse, with clean sharp lettering and carefully executed tripod. These coins are attributed by Svoronos to Ake Ptolemais (Acre) but modern finds indicate they are most likely from the area near (modern) Bodrum in Turkey. See the Trident series, above. Ptolemaic possessions during the 3rd C. BC were scattered around the Mediterranean and these are likely coins from one of the Ptolemaic settlements of that time. See the book by Roger Bagnall on Ptolemaic possessions outside Egypt. All are relatively scarce. Examples of Svoronos 791 are sometimes found with a single letter (A or B) countermark in a circular punch on the reverse, an 'A' example shown in the countermark section at the end of this presentation. Svoronos also catalogued as 792 a coin showing a Ptolemais mint mark (PI-T-O) to the right of the eagle, previously known from one example in the British Museum (not listed in any other reference book and not seen by Ashton at the Fethiye Museum). The PI-T-O may be the reason this series was ascribed to Ptolemais, but it appears only Svoronos 792 may really be from that area, perhaps an issue of Ptolemy V (note the unusual eagle style). Note also (see countermarked types, below) that some coins of other series are known with tripod countermarks which may indicate their validation for circulation in this region during a time when coins were either in short supply, not being minted at the time, or needed in larger sizes than minted locally.
gae565_o
gae565_r
26mm - 12-14gm
Sv 791 'a'
Crude style. Ptolemy IV-V?
gae222_o
gae222_r
24mm - 10-11.4gm
Sv791
gae773_o
gae773_r
20mm - 4.5gm
Sv792
PI-T-O mark at right
gae845_o
gae845_r
18mm - 4.0gm
Sv793

Ptolemy III-IV - Early Lotus Blossom Series 4 or 5

This denomination series consists of 4 coins all with an identical appearance, differing only in size/weight. The familiar Zeus Ammon obverse is accompanied by closed-wing eagle on the reverse with the lotus blossom in the same position where we see a cornucopia or club on some other series. The very close similarity of the style and fabric led to including these together though the Svoronos cataloging and other references may differ in reignal attribution. The style and fabric compare with other types attributed to Ptolemy IV and the lotus flowers on these are all rendered so similarly (as well as the portrait and eagle) that they seem to belong together. As you can see here the largest is attributed by Svoronos as number 1404, Ptolemy VI; the others as Ptolemy II (841-843).
gae379_o
gae379_r
38mm - 45.6gm
Sv1404
gae342_o
gae342_r
28mm - 16gm
Sv841
gae808_o
gae808_r
22mm - 8gm
Sv842
gae675_o
gae675_r
17mm - 3.8gm
Sv843

Ptolemy IV - Alexandria Cornucopia Series 5

This denomination series differs from the previous series because of the limited coin size ranges. We have only the 'drachm' and 'hemidrachm', with two similar leg monogram types, from Alexandria (cornucopia to left of the eagle). LI = LAMDA IOTA. DI = DELTA IOTA.
gae026_o
gae026_r
42mm - 68.4gm
Sv1125 - DI
gae218_o
gae218_r
36mm - 34.3gm
Sv1127 - DI
gae897_o
gae897_r
42mm - 68.4gm
Sv1126 - LI
gae868_o
gae868_r
36mm - 34.3gm
Sv1128 - LI

Ptolemy IV - Alexandria Series 5

This series has leg control/monogram variations of SIGMA, SIGMA EPSILON, or SIGMA IOTA EPSILON, in 5 sizes, from Alexandria. As in the earlier series (with DELTA IOTA and LAMDA IOTA) we find drachm and hemidrachm sizes, In addition there are tetrobols, diobols, and one known hemiobol with SIGMA (shown here). One very unusual large coin, shown here, has the SIGMA EPSILON monogram in retrograde, known in only two examples (the other in Weiser, Koeln). The later series (see below) has the tetraobols and diobols of similar types showing countermarks and some with different control symbols or none at all.
gae883_o
gae883_r
42mm - 68.4gm
Sv992 - S/SE
gae174_o
gae174_r
42mm - 68.4gm
Sv992 - S/SE
Two examples known with SE retrograde shown here (see Weiser).
gae505_o
gae505_r
38mm - 45.6gm
Sv1148 - S/SE no countermark
See countermark type below (Sv1149)
gae025_o
gae025_r
36mm - 34.3gm
Sv993 - S/SE/SIE
Example known with SE retrograde (Weiser).
gae258_o
gae258_r
30mm - 22.8gm
Sv994 = Sv1151 - S/SE
See countermark types below.
gae545_o
gae545_r
18mm - 3.8gm
Not catalogued in Svoronos - S/SE
gae635_o
gae635_r
15mm - 2.9gm
Not catalogued in Svoronos - S/SE

Ptolemy IV - Kyrene Tetraobols

This series has countermarked tetrobols and diobols with different controls thought to be from Kyrene. By the time of this later series the issue of drachm and hemidrachm coins was no longer practised, making the tetrobol the largest circulating coin and perhaps the only type produced during this period late in the reign of Ptolemy IV. The unmarked type shown here might be an Alexandria issue, but its crude style and lack of corresponding other denominations sets it aside from the issues shown above with S and SE controls (Alexandria Series II).
gae629_o
gae629_r
38mm - 45.6gm
Sv1140 - PI-Y-E control without countermark
gae513_o
gae513_r
38mm - 45.6gm
Sv1142 - PI-Y-A w/cornucopia countermark inverted at right
gae523_o
gae523_r
38mm - 45.6gm
Svxxxx - Unmarked type not cataloged.
See countermarked type below.

Ptolemy IV - Tyre Series 5

Only the drachm and hemidrachm, with two leg control symbol combinations, from Tyre (club to left of the eagle) are catalogued in Svoronos. One rare hemidrachm (uncatalogued) is also shown here with DELTA IOTA controls that also has an ivy leaf countermark on the club (one other specimen known). A hemidrachm with retrograde SIGMA EPSILON monogram is catalogued in Weiser (Koeln) - see the Alexandria drachm with retrograde SIGMA EPSILON above. Additional uncatalogued types have come to light in the three smaller denominations with SIGMA shown here and a few others listed here. The Ptolemy IV coinage of Tyre appears to encompass more control symbol types and sizes than were known until recently. LI = LAMDA IOTA. DI = DELTA IOTA. S=SIGMA. SE=SIGMA EPSILON.
gae884_o
gae884_r
42mm - 68.4gm
Sv1129 - LI or DI
The two control combinations are not distinguished in Svoronos.
gae322_o
gae322_r
36mm - 34.3gm
Sv1130 - LI or DI
The two control combinations are not distinguished in Svoronos.
gae485_o
gae485_r
24mm - 11.4gm
Sv??? - DI
Sv??? - S
Sv??? - SE
Types not catalogued in Svoronos. Double-size of Svoronos 1153.
gae431_o
gae431_r
18mm - 5.7gm
Svoronos 1153 - SE
gae308_o
gae308_r
15mm - 2.9gm
Sv??? - S
Type not catalogued in Svoronos. One-half of Svoronos 1153

Ptolemy IV-V - Tyre Decorated Reverse Series

These denomination series also have limited coin size ranges. There are actually three different series with different controls. We have only the 'hemidrachm' and smaller sizes, with two main leg monogram types for this unusual 'decorated' series. Tyre issues of these unusual 'decorated' reverse designs have PI, PI-T, PI-T-O, and AP (ALPHA RHO) monograms. This is an enigmatic series for which the basis of the highly decorated reverses is not known, though the combination of filetted cornucopiaea on the eagle's shoulders with a club (of Tyre) or other mintmark is seen on some coins of Ptolemy II. The PI control letter, exergal letters, and unusual decorations (caps of the dioscuri, stars, etc.) are echoed in some silver and gold issues that tie these most likely to Ptolemy V. A precise attribution for the others remains a topic of scholarly investigation. Those with PI-T and PI-T-O are attributed by some to Ptolemais but the use of mint designations in the usual position of control letters as well as the clear presence of the (presumably) Tyre club mark is good reason to question that, as is the existence of related precious metal coins bearing related control marks that are likely attributable to other Phoenician mints. We show these series together here because they unusual 'decorations' on the reverse and Tyre club seem to make them related to one another but the reignal attribution may indeed span Ptolemy IV and V. The production quality of some AP types (such as the hemidrachm shown here) is high enough, with carefully made very round flan with clean rounded edges as well as high artistic quality of its reverse, to suggest even production under Ptolemy III. Two coins shown here merit additional attention. The coin with caduceus countermark is apparently unique and the caduceus as a countermark is not on any other Ptolemaic coins we have seen nor mentioned in Noeske's paper on countermarks of Ptolemaic coins. The city location or other meaning of the caduceus countermark is unknown but that symbol is associated with certain Greek cities such as Tarsos, as is the club seen on some Tarsos coins. It is possible these are Asia Minor issues yet to be better understood. Parts of Cilicia were under Ptolemaic control for much of the 3rd C. BC and only taken by Antiochos III near its end. The coin with PI-T-O control with a size in between Svoronos 1058 and 1060, a 'half size' of Sv 1058, appeared to be a unique specimen as well (a second one only recently appeared in 2014). The AP control types are the most frequently seen, sometimes nicely made (as the example shown here) and other times somewhat crude and of poor metal. The other types are all moderately to extremely scarce. The larger coins of these types sometimes show striations under the Zeus figure which appear to be part of the die itself, possibly indicating a re-working of an earlier die after removing its original somewhat design. These are altogether enigmatic, scarce, and among the more interesting Ptolemaic bronzes of the 3rd C. BC. It is possible these represent the last Ptolemaic bronze coinage of Tyre before it fell to Antiochos III during the reign of Ptolemy V, or perhaps some of them are from an Asia Minor location that fell to Seleukid control a bit earlier. One type recently added here is the uncatalogued type with the Kausia (hat) underneath the club, previously known from only a single specimen in a private collection and not catalogued or illustrated in any reference books or museum collections. A worn specimen, it nevertheless is clearly the same coin type as its brother which displays the kausia hat more clearly. The type is related to both the Svoronos 1059 and 1320 which share the same mintmark and PI control letter. A newly discovered type has appeared that bears no controls at all, adding to the mystery of this enigmatic series.
gae288_o
gae288_r
36mm - 34.3gm
Sv1251 - AP
gae515_o
gae515_r
18mm - 3.8gm
Sv1252 - AP
gae432_o
gae432_r
16mm - 2gm
Sv1253 - AP
gae657_o
gae657_r
36mm - 34.3gm
Sv1058 - PI-T-O

gae442_o
gae442_r
28mm - 18gm
Svxxxx - PI-T-O
Uncatalogued type similar to 1/2 denomination of Sv1058.
gae261_o
gae261_r
20mm - 5.7gm
Sv1060 - PI-T
gae589_o
gae589_r
36mm - 34.3gm
Sv1059 - PI
Unusual EP in exergue.
gae971_o
gae971_r
36mm - 34.3gm
Kausia (hat) under club
Uncatalogued - PI
? E in exergue.
gae277_o
gae277_r
28mm - 18gm
Sv1320 - PI
Unusual IE in exergue.
gae976_o
gae976_r
32mm - 22gm
Uncatalogued
No Controls

Ptolemy IV-V - Alexandria - Lorber & Faucher (2010) Series 6A

A New Configuration of Coin Series of the 2nd C. BC. The nomenclature and arrangement here follows the work of Faucher and Lorber's AJN 2010 paper: "Bronze Coinage of Ptolemaic Egypt in the Second Century BC", AJN, 2010, pp 35-84.
This series appears to represent the introduction of an entirely new valuation system for Ptolemaic bronze coins, as attested by papyrological evidence as well. In this system (as we know from the denomination-marked bronzes of Cleopatra VII with 80 and 40 drachma values) the bronze coins began to represent large numbers of drachmae. The exact valuation of the coins following this change isn't precisely known (except for the marked ones of Cleopatra VII) but it appears the large Ammon-horn coin may represent a value of 80 drachmae.
While the denomination series schemes that follow, as presented by Faucher and Lorber (2010), are perhaps subject to some refinement, they do appear to represent the new valuation scheme in a sensible fashion. Instead of the earlier scheme with a bronze drachm of ca. 69gm and easily distinguished smaller fractions with almost identical designs, we now see a narrower range of weights that express a wide range of values and thus a sequence of denominations with different designs to make them more easily distinguishable. We likewise see a fairly rapid replacement of series over 30-40 years, perhaps, with the production of some denominations in a series and others in a subsequent series. The apparent constant feature of this coinage structure is the Zeus Ammon with two-eagle reverse as the largest denomination in each series. We also see a reduction in the weight (though perhaps not the face value) of that coin and related smaller-denomination issues, over this time period. The exact time period represented by Series 6A - 7C, see here, is not exact but likely to have run for almost 100 years.
The need for a new bronze coinage system apparently arose during the close of the reign of Ptolemy IV due to events including a 20-year-long major revolt in Upper Egypt (which had its own local separatist Pharoah) but also a substantial inflation of prices. For a detailed discussion of the rationale and the hoard and papyrological evidence supporting this coinage system arrangement, please see the paper by Faucher and Lorber.
Two types with the unusual Ammon horns (one with the horn protruding from the top of the head, another with the horn protruding from the forehead) were found together with countermarked tetrobol types of Ptolemy IV (with controls) in the Coinex hoard. These types are likely attributable to a period late in the reign of Ptolemy IV when bronze coin valuation was redefined. This and some of the subsequent coin series are now shown in light of a remarkable paper published in 2011 by Thomas Faucher and Catharine Lorber, who analyzed 2nd C. BC hoards found in Egypt and re-aligned a number of coin series of the 2nd C. BC (e.g. late Ptolemy IV and also through Ptolemy V and VI, perhaps VII as well), according to the hoard content and metallurgical data. The large-horn Ammon types are now considered to be the large coins of an early series of re-valued bronze late in the reign of Ptolemy IV, with 2 eagles on the reverse denoting the largest denomination of the series, and for the first time introducing a portrait of Isis, Alexander (or Heracles) in a lionskin headdress, and the 'Alexandria' portrait similar to earlier designs that depicted Alexander clad in an elephantskin headdress. These new coin designs appear on several of the subsequent series and are found in substantial numbers in hoards of the 2nd C. BC. We use here the Series notation of the paper by Faucher and Lorber (Bronze Coinage of Ptolemaic Egypt in the Second Century BC, AJN, 2010, pp 35-84). This sensible new analysis further discredits the naive association of the two-eagle design with 'joint rule' and helps us make a more sensible interpretation of the Zeus Ammon / two-eagle types as consistently the large coins of a sequence of issue-series over perhaps the next 100 years and the existence of various sizes likely related to a series of weight reductions as the different weight representatives of the 2-eagle Ammon coin are found in different hoards thought to have closed at different times and containing different secondary denomination representatives (Isis, Heracles, and Alexandria designs of different sizes).
gae876_o
gae876_r
36mm - 39.7gm
Sv1423v1 - unmarked - Zeus with Ammon horn at top of head, two eagles, crude style
gae530_o
gae530_r
36mm - 39.7gm
Sv1423v2 - unmarked - Zeus with Ammon horn at forehead, two eagles
gae728_o
gae728_r
32mm - 28.7gm
Sv1491
gae733_o
gae733_r
30mm - 19.8gm
Sv1492
gae731_o
gae731_r
28mm - 15.2gm
Sv1493
gae665_o
gae665_r
24mm - 7.57gm
Sv1154
gae940
gae940
17mm - 3.7gm
Sv1496

Ptolemy V-VI - Alexandria - Lorber & Faucher (2010) Series 6B

This denomination series consists of 4 coins, the largest being the ordinary style of Zeus Ammon with double-eagle reverse, and again (as in Series 6A) alternating with Isis and other designs for smaller denominations. The nomenclature and arrangement here follows the work of Faucher and Lorber's AJN 2010 paper: "Bronze Coinage of Ptolemaic Egypt in the Second Century BC", AJN, 2010, pp 35-84.
gae0
gae0
36mm - 39gm
Sv1423v3 - Normal Ammon Horn
gae824_o
gae824_r
32mm - 30gm
Sv1233
gae313_o
gae313_r
22mm - 6.2gm
Sv1173
gae627_o
gae627_r
17mm - 4.3gm
Sv1155

Ptolemy V-VI - Alexandria - Lorber & Faucher (2010) Series 6C

This denomination series consists of 5 coins, the largest being once again an ordinary style of Zeus Ammon with double-eagle reverse, and again (as in Series 6A and 6B, above) alternating with Isis and other designs for smaller denominations. The nomenclature and arrangement here follows the work of Faucher and Lorber's AJN 2010 paper: "Bronze Coinage of Ptolemaic Egypt in the Second Century BC", AJN, 2010, pp 35-84. With this series we begin to see the weight reduction of the largest denomination from ca. 39gm to 30gm.
gae791_o
gae791_r
32mm - 28.5gm
Sv1424a - Normal Ammon Horn
gae636_o
gae636_r
24mm - 11.7gm
Sv1494
gae734_o
gae734_r
21mm - 9.1gm
Sv1495
gae902_o
gae902_r
18mm - 5.7gm
Sv??
gae0
gae0
16mm - 2.2gm
Sv1195

Ptolemy V - VI - Alexandria - Lorber & Faucher (2010) Series 6D - KAPPA Control Symbol

This denomination series consists of five coins with leg monogram KAPPA and introduces the design with Alexander wearing Elephantskin to the Ptolemaic bronzes. The largest size is unusual in that the symbol to the left of the eagle is a star, and occasionally this type is found with a cornucopia countermark as well, sometimes obscuring the star. The example shown here does have the countermark and part of the star is still visible, showing the type variation very clearly. This series shares the K control mark in the eagle's legs but, unlike most other series, the reverse on each denomination differs from all the others - eagles facing different directions, kerykeion through the eagle, two eagles (Sv 1377), open wings, closed wings, etc. While the control links these coins it is possible they comprise issues at slightly different times. The bare-legged eagles on all the types almost certainly place these prior to the reign of Ptolemy VI, though some references put the large coin (Sv 1375) under Ptolemy VI. This distinction has some implication for the dating of the countermarking (see the Coinex Hoard paper by C. Lorber and S. Huston, the conclusion of which is that the countermarking with cornucopiae preceded the reign of Ptolemy VI).
The countermarked versions of the larger issues are shown in the separate section at the end of this presentation. The 'no control', 'K', and Omicron/Lamda control all exist in countermark versions (the no-control type is only known with the countermark), shown below, with cornucopia countermark impressed on the star that is seen at left of the eagle. The 'no control' and Omicron (with inscribed Lamda) are not catalogued in Svoronos, however Weiser shows the Omicron/Lamda type (Weiser #136) also as Ptolemy V, describing it as mis-read 'K'.
gae730_o
gae730_r
30mm - 20gm
Weiser 136 - OMICRON w/inscribed LAMDA (star at left)
See countermark type below
gae741_o
gae741_r
30mm - 21.5gm
Sv1375 - K (star at left)
See countermark type below.
Sv ? - nm w/cmk (star at left)
See below.
gae735_o
gae735_r
25mm - 10.6gm
Sv1376 - K
gae740_o
gae740_r
22mm - 7.1gm
Sv1377 - K
gae309_o
gae309_r
18mm - 4.8gm
Sv1378 - K
gae841_o
gae841_r
16mm - 2.9gm
Sv1379 - K

Ptolemy V-VI - Alexandria - Lorber & Faucher (2010) Series 6E

This series, with largest coin being Zeus Ammon, once again reprises the alternation of designs on successive denominations.
gae247_o
gae247_r
28mm - 21.9gm
Sv1424b
gae733_o
gae733_r
28mm - 17.1gm
Sv1234
gae734_o
gae734_r
22mm - 8.8gm
Sv1236
gae468_o
gae468_r
18mm - 4.2gm
Sv1238
gae0
gae0
14mm -
2.2gm
Sv1156

Ptolemy VI - Alexandria - Lorber & Faucher (2010) Series 7A - with Kleopatra II (ca 160-145BC)

This denomination series consists of three coins with the unusual obverse inscription of Kleopatra I (wife of Ptolemy V and mother of Ptolemy VI) ca. 180-176 BC or Kleopatra II, co-ruler with her brother Ptolemy VI, from 160-145BC. We have only three sizes with leg monogram or left-field monogram of PI ALPHA. Having the obverse KLEOPATRAS incription may well indicate that she was the regent or co-ruler with the very young Ptolemy VI during the earliest part of his reign (ca. 180 - 176BC). The newer chronology by Lorber and Faucher leans toward the 160-145BC period. The next series (see just below) appears to be largely congruent to these coins but with two more denominations and lacking the KLEOPATRAS inscription. The largest denomination here also has a cornucopia at the left of the two eagles, typical of Alexandria issues, telling us that the PI-A monogram is not interpreted as a mintmark though it does appear to the left of the eagle on the two smallest issues. Compare these coins with the series shown immediately below.
gae427_o
gae427_r
30mm - 23.5gm
Sv1380 - PI-A
gae916_o
gae916_r
22mm - 7.1gm
Sv1381 - PI-A
gae469_o
gae469_r
18mm - 3.7gm
Sv1382 - PI-A

Ptolemy VI-VIII - Alexandria - Lorber & Faucher (2010) Series 7B

This denomination series has some types similar to those of the previous series, but without the obverse inscription seen above. We have now an expanded series of five sizes with leg monogram or left-field monogram of PI ALPHA, as above, but without the obverse inscription. Perhaps issued just shortly after the KLEOPATRAS obverse inscription series seen above. The largest has Zeus Ammon, then Isis, Alexander in Lionskin, Alexander in Elephantskin, and a small Isis. Only the largest, as before, has two eagles on the reverse. Like the KLEOPATRAS inscription series above, these coins have the PI-A monogram in the left reverse field except for the largest Zeus portrait coin which has the monogram in the eagle's legs. PI-A is a control symbol for these coins of Alexandria, not a mintmark. This series appears to be a continuation, with an expanded set of denominations, of the previous series (with KLEOPATRAS obverse inscription). The largest size and two smallest sizes in this series are congruent in design, monogram placement, and size/weight to the three coins of the KLEOPATRAS series above. The absence of the KLEOPATRAS inscription on these may indicate that the coins are to be considered the first issue of Ptolemy VI as 'sole ruler'.
gae843_o
gae843_r
30mm - 22.6gm
Sv1383 - PI-A
gae681_o
gae681_r
28mm - 15.2gm
Sv1384 - PI-A
gae760_o
gae760_r
24mm - 9.3gm
Sv1385 - PI-A
gae504_o
gae504_r
22mm - 7.5gm
Sv1386 - PI-A
gae0
gae0
17mm - 3.8gm
Sv1387 - PI-A

Ptolemy VI-VIII - Alexandria - Lorber & Faucher (2010) Series 7C

This denomination series consists of 4 coins, again with a Zeus Ammon/two-eagle coin as the largest denomination, now weight-reduced to an average 22.5 grams, and again alternating designs for successive smaller denominations.
gae210_o
gae210_r
28mm - 21.9gm
Sv1424b
gae235_o
gae235_r
26mm - 14.1gm
Sv1235
gae853_o
gae853_r
16mm - 3.1gm
Sv1239
gae0
gae0
14mm - 1.9gm
Sv1240

Ptolemy VI - VIII - Corinthian Helmet Series

This denomination series consists of 2 large to medium coins with an identical appearance, differing only in size/weight. We see the familiar Zeus Ammon obverse with a closed-wing eagle reverse and a crested (corinthian?) helmet at left, the crest depicted in as an elaborate long hanging plume. The meaning of the helmet symbol, possibly a mint mark, is unknown. Similar helmets are seen on some much earlier and smaller coins of Ptolemy I, see above. Both sizes are relatively scarce. Attribution to Ptolemy VI or VIII is also subject to additional consideration especially with respect to the reverse style. An earlier attribution is entirely possible. The absence of fully-feathered eagle legs is highly suggestive of an attribution to Ptolemy IV or V.
gae690_o
gae690_r
40mm - 45.6gm
Sv1634
gae713_o
gae713_r
30mm - 22.8gm
Sv1635

Ptolemy VI - Sole Reign Lotus Blossom Series

This denomination series consists of eight coin sizes with single eagle reverse and lotus blossom to the left of the eagle. Specimens are marked with EYL or no control letters in the eagle's legs. Two medium size types have a sceptre or kerykeion through the eagle. We adopt the attribution of Svoronos 1403 (with no leg controls) as Ptolemy VI due to the style of the eagle rendering and its resemblance to the others here with long tufted feathers all the way down the eagle's legs. Weiser had placed this large coin at Ptolemy III but the style of both the Zeus facial rendering and eagle feathering argue against that. We also remove Svoronos 1404 (also with no leg controls) to an earlier series (see above) that includes Svoronos 841, 842, and 843 based on the same stylistic considerations. A couple of the smaller EYL types may display a Seleukid anchor countermark and the apparent defacement of the name Ptolemaioy from the reverse. Others show only the defacement of the inscription with no countermark, and yet others appear to be the original intact design. It is thought the defaced and/or countermarked examples are coins either captured by Antiochos IV during his invasion or made from captured dies and countermarked for circulation in the Seleukid empire. We show here some examples (e.g. Sv1401) with both the full inscription and obliterated PTOLEMAI version. That invasion occurred during the middle reign of Ptolemy VI, who was for a time a captive of Antiochos IV. Upon Antiochos IV departure it is thought he created his 'Egyptianized' series of bronzes that closely mirror these in sizes and style (see further below), but which were issued at Antioch as a celebration of his, at least temporary (until expelled by Roman allies of the Ptolemies) victory over Egypt. There is one additional enigmatic coin, Svoronos 1399, of comparable style but which lacks both the lotus blossom and control marks. We do not place it here because it has no lotus flower symbol.
gae086_o
gae086_r
45mm - 91.2gm
Sv1395 - EYL
Sv1403 - nm
gae198_o
gae198_r
36mm - 34.3gm
Sv1405 - nm
gae778_o
gae778_r
30mm - 22.8gm
Sv1396 - EYL
Sv1406 - nm
gae195_o
gae195_r
24mm - 16gm
Sv1397 - EYL
Sv1398 - EYL + cmk
Some with PTOLEMAI obliterated as shown here.
gae743_o
gae743_r
22mm - 11.4gm
Sv1401 - EYL (some w/cmk)
gae462_o
gae462_r
22mm - 11.4gm
Sv1401 - EYL (some w/cmk, PTOLEMAI obliterated)
gae738_o
gae738_r
20mm - 8gm
Sv1402 - EYL
Sv1407 - nm
gae757_o
gae757_r
14mm - 2.9gm
Sv1408 - nm

Ptolemy III - VIII - Kyrene

Attribution of these coins varies with different reference books. Buttrey's reports on excavations in Kyrene and recent finds indicate most or all are from Kyrene, however the reignal attributions are subject to additional research and analysis. The most usual design motif is a portrait of Ptolemy I on the obverse and the head of Libya on the reverse, often with a branch or cornucopia near the neck. It may be this is a single series, but it might include issues ranging over a lengthy period of time of different Ptolemaic kings. Shown here are coins that appear to be part of a related series for convenience.
gae798_o
gae798_r
28mm - 18gm
Sylphium plant behind head
Double cornucopiae at chin
Sv 1143
Ptolemy III?
gae937_o
gae937_r
26mm - 19gm
Sylphium plant behind head
Double cornucopiae at chin
Variant with no control below Libya's head
Sv 1143
Ptolemy III?
gae658_o
gae658_r
28mm - 16gm
Sylphium plant behind head
Double cornucopiae at chin
Sv 1141
Ptolemy III?
gae796_o
gae796_r
28mm - 11.4gm
Sylphium plant behind head
Double cornucopiae at chin
Sv 1141 or variant
Ptolemy III?
gae647_o
gae647_r
21mm - 8gm
Single cornucopia at chin
Sv 871
Ptolemy III
gae578_o
gae578_r
18mm - 3.8gm
Single cornucopia at chin
Sv 856
Ptolemy III
gae762_o
gae762_r
13mm - 2gm
Single cornucopia at chin
Sv 857
Ptolemy III
gae594_o
gae594_r
18mm - 3.8gm
PI-Y-E under neck truncation
Sv 1658
Ptolemy VIII
gae694_o
gae694_r
18mm - 3.8gm
Unknown symbol under neck truncation (~ I w/ dot on top)
Sv 1725
gae525_o
gae525_r
17mm - 2.9gm
Double cornucopia at chin
Uncatalogued

Ptolemy VIII Kyrene - Naming Ptolemy Euergeties II

These coins are unusual in that several types actually have the epithet name of Ptolemy VIII Euergeties II on the reverse as part of the usual Basileos Ptolemaioy inscription. They depart from the earlier series that look similar over a long period of time and have the Ptolemy I portrait with Libya on the reverse. These have Zeus Ammon and an eagle, usually open-winged. Some have the eagle facing to the right which is not seen on other Ptolemaic coin types. Shown here are just a few representative medium and smaller size examples. There are some other types in this series that include very large coins up to 90 grams; unusual types with one or two cornucopiae on the reverse with no eagle, reminiscent of some earlier types of large gold coins. We see a mix of control letters on the bronzes with PHI, KAPPA and 'none' in the fields but not in the eagle's legs. There are also some types with letters in the fields that appear to spell out THEOS. It's an unusual mix and Buttrey's excavation reports put these uniquivocally at Kyrene though some types are listed by Morkholm (SNG Copenhagen) from other locations. The open wing eagles of this series have a characteristic stereotyped 'high shoulder' on the opened wing.
gae973_o
gae973_r
30mm - 19gm
Zeus Ammon
Open-wing eagle facing right
K in right field.
Sv 1649
gae572_o
gae572_r
21mm - 7gm
Zeus Ammon
Two eagles facing left
Sylphium plant in left field.
Sv 1158
gae936_o
gae936_r
27mm - 10gm
Zeus Ammon
Open-wing eagle facing left
No control in left or right field.
Sv 1654
gae836_o
gae836_r
27mm - 10gm
Zeus Ammon
Open-wing eagle facing left
PHI in left field.
Sv 1642
gae573_o
gae573_r
27mm - 10gm
Zeus Ammon
Open-wing eagle facing right
PHI in right field.
Sv 1643
gae593_o
gae593_r
21mm - 6.3gm
Zeus Ammon
Open-wing eagle facing left
THETA EPSILON at left.
Sv 1651
gae595_o
gae595_r
15mm - 2.5gm
Zeus Ammon
Open-wing eagle facing left
No control in left or right field.
Sv 1655
gae596_o
gae596_r
15mm - 2.5gm
Zeus Ammon
Open-wing eagle facing left
No control in left or right field.
Sv 1656

Ptolemy VIII and Ptolemy IX/Cleopatra III Dated Bronze Coins - Late 2nd C. BC

These coins go together on the basis of style and the unusual dates clearly shown next to the eagle. There are two groups each with a number of types, similar to those shown here but differeng by the actual date and sometimes the appearance of additional symbols. Two examples shown here from the first group (Ptolemy VIII) are catalogued from Svoronos 1622 - 1632 with dates that all start with K or L, spanning years 26-41 (144BC - 129BC) of his reign. Some have different combinations of additional symbols along with the date - lotus flower, petasos, etc. Interestingly these coins sometimes lack central depressions seen on almost all Ptolemaic bronze coins after 260BC. All roughly the same size about 22-25mm, 8-10gm. The second family belongs to Ptolemy IX and Cleopatra III, with OMEGA/SIGMA to the left of the eagle on the reverse and either L GAMMA (year 3) or L DELTA (year 4) date to the right of the eagle, for the years 114 and 113 BC. Some of these also have a K or KP monogram (of unknown meaning) on the obverse behind the main design figure's head. These constitute the range of Svoronos catalog numbers from 1191 - 1195. Svoronos catalogued them as Ptolemy IV (Cyprus) but a hoard found in Egypt and an Egyptian shipwreck have these coins mixed with tetradrachms that can be definitely attributed to Ptolemy IX and Cleopatra III. There are two smaller sizes in this second family of dated bronzes, both with helmeted Athena on the obverse (Svoronos 1194 and 1195), that are not shown here. The smallest Athena type, Svoronos 1195, has an unusual reverse with eagle facing right but lacks the markings (OMEGA/SIGMA and date) of the other coins in this family. Explicitly dated Ptolemaic bronze coins are unusual and may be uniquely represented by these families.
gae780_o
gae780_r
21.9-22.2mm - 8.9gm - 12h
LKH over lotus flower - Year 28, 142BC
Sv 1626
Ptolemy VIII
Other Dates Include:
LKC = Sv 1621 = Year 26 = 144BC
LKZ = Sv 1622 = Year 27 = 143BC
LKH = Sv 1623 - 1625 = Year 28 = 142BC
LKTheta = Sv 1626 = Year 29 = 141BC
LLamda = Sv 1627 = Year 30 = 140BC
LLamdaGamma = Sv 1628 = Year 33 = 137BC
LLamdaDelta = Sv 1629 = Year 34 = 136BC
LLamdaEpsilon = Sv 1630 = Year 35 = 135BC
LLamdaC = Sv 1631 = Year 36 = 134BC
LMA = Sv 1632 = Year 41 = 129BC
gae901_o
gae901_r
21.8-23.2mm - 9gm - 12h
L LAMDA GAMMA over lotus flower - Year 33, 137BC
Sv 1628
Ptolemy VIII
gae172_o
gae172_r
27.1-28.4mm - 17.0gm - 11h
Zeus Ammon obverse with no discernible symbol behind head
Omega/Sigma at left, L/Delta at right - Year 4, 113BC
Sv 1193
Ptolemy IX & Cleopatra III
gae599_o
gae599_r
24.8-27.4mm - 15.5gm - 12h
Zeus Ammon obverse with KP behind head
Omega/Sigma at left, L/Delta at right - Year 4, 113BC
Sv 1193
Ptolemy IX & Cleopatra III
gae983_o
gae983_r
27.1-28.4mm - 8.8gm - 12h
Bearded Heracles obverse with K behind head
Omega/Sigma at left, L/Gamma at right - Year 3, 114BC
Sv 1191
Ptolemy IX & Cleopatra III

Late 2nd - Early 1st C. BC Issues with Unusual Symbols

These coins seem to belong together on the basis of style and the profusion of symbols next to the eagles on the reverse. The exact meaning of the symbols is not known and, unlike many other Ptolemaic coin issues, they do not appear to indicate mintmarks because they are quite varied (thunderbolt, aphlaston, caduceus, petasos, etc.). Some are not catalogued in Svoronos or other reference books and reignal attributions are most likely of Ptolemy IX, X, XI, XII.
gae118_o
gae118_r
36mm - 30gm
Thunderbolt at left
Sv1694
gae450_o
gae450_r
30mm - 18gm
Caduceus at left
Uncatalogued
gae445_o
gae445_r
30mm - 15gm
Petasos at left
Sv1696
gae638_o
gae638_r
24mm - 8gm
Petasos at left
Cox 119
gae576_o
gae576_r
30mm - 15gm
Palm branch at left
Sv
gae359_o
gae359_r
30mm - 15gm
No control at left
Sv1712
gae761_o
gae761_r
24mm - 8gm
No control at left
Sv1713
gae581_o
gae581_r
14mm - 2gm
No control at left
Sv1715
gae767_o
gae767_r
30mm - 11.4gm
Cornucopia at left
Weiser 179 (15gm)
Size/weight between Sv1697 and Sv1698
Weiser lists his 179 as Sv1697
gae784_o
gae784_r
22mm - 8gm
Cornucopia at left
Svoronos 1698

gae797_o
gae797_r
24mm - 8gm
Star over D at left
Sv 1706
gae707_o
gae707_r
24mm - 8gm
Star over T at left
Sv 1711
gae652_o
gae652_r
24mm - 8gm
Aphlaston at left
Sv 1813
gae801_o
gae801_r
24mm - 8gm
Cornucopia at left
Sv 1814
gae704_o
gae704_r
26mm - 8gm
Palm Branch through eagle
KPR monogram right
Sv 1875
gae539_o
gae539_r
22mm - 3.8gm
Isis Headdress at left
Sv 1842

Antiochos IV - Post-Conquest Egyptianized Series of Antioch

This denomination series consists of four coins with single eagle reverse and no control letters in the eagle's legs, with the eagle facing right and the reignal name of Antiochos Theos Epiphanes. The time period follows the departure from Egypt by Antiochos IV in about 168BC following his brief conquest and reign with Ptolemy VI at Memphis. These coins are listed in Svoronos but they are Seleukid coins issued by Antiochos IV at Antioch following the failure to consolidate the Egyptian conquest. Some believe the coins' issue may have preceded the invasion of Egypt. The Zeus figure on the largest type is not the usual Egyptian Zeus Ammon of large 3rd C. BC bronzes, rather Zeus laureate. The second size has (Zeus) Serapis with a laurel wreath and Isis headdress ornament at the top of the head. That type is not known on any Egyptian issue. The Isis portrait type is closest to a contemporary Egyptian design. The smallest coin has a traditionally Seleukid idealized radiate portrait seen on many other bronze issues of Antiochos IV. The other unusual feature on all of these is that the single closed-wing standing eagle faces right rather than the almost ubiquitously left-facing corresponding type on actual Ptolemaic bronzes.
gae423_o
gae423_r
44mm - 72gm
Sv1415 - nm
gae029_o
gae029_r
36mm - 36gm
Sv1416 - nm
gae150_o
gae150_r
28mm - 18gm
Sv1417 - nm
gae405_o
gae405_r
22mm - 9gm
Sv1418 - nm

Countermarked Types

The coins illustrated here are not a specific series, but represent a variety of coins from different series illustrated above and which display countermarks of a similarly great variety. The paper by Noeske discusses some of the countermark types. Full attribution of the each specific countermark type awaits additional research. We do find coins from a many mint locations that are countermarked and many are relatively common (the large incuse trident-stamp on early bronze diobols, for example). Some are quite rare and their existence may add to our understanding of the circulation of Ptolemaic bronzes throughout the empire and neighboring states. The first group shows coins that all have cornucopia countermarks which seem to span the reigns of Ptolemy III through Ptolemy V only. The second group shows various other countermarks from Ptolemy II through Ptolemy VI including incuse trident, tripod, A letter, and Seleukid anchor.

Cornucopia Countermarks - Ptolemy III - V

gae691_o
gae691_r
30mm - 22.8gm
Sv966
Chi-Rho Series
Ptolemy III
gae614_o
gae614_r
36mm - 34.3gm
Sv993
S or SE
Ptolemy IV
gae255_o
gae255_r
38mm - 45.6gm
Sv1149
S/SE Series
Ptolemy IV
gae513_o
gae513_r
38mm - 45.6gm
Sv1142 - PI/Y
Ptolemy IV
gae623_o
gae623_r
38mm - 45.6gm
Uncatalogued - NM
Ptolemy IV
gae337_o
gae337_r
30mm - 22.8gm
Sv994 = Sv1151
S/SE Series
Ptolemy IV
gae698_o
gae698_r
30mm - 20gm
Uncatalogued, cf. Sv1375v - no control (star at left)
Ptolemy V
gae729_o
gae729_r
30mm - 22.8gm
Uncatalogued, cf. Sv1375v - OMICRON w/inscribed LAMDA (star at left, w/cornucopia countermark)
Ptolemy V
gae667_o
gae667_r
30mm - 20gm
Sv1375 - K (star at left w/ cornucopia countermark)
Ptolemy V

Incuse Trident, Letter, Tripod, Ivy Leaf, Caduceus, and Anchor Countermarks - Ptolemy II - VI

gae482_o
gae482_r
28mm - 15.2gm
Sv553
Numerous early diobols are sometimes found with this same incuse trident stamp on the reverse.
Ptolemy II Early Diobol
gae670_o
gae670_r
28mm - 15.2gm
Sv557
Numerous early diobols are sometimes found with this same incuse trident stamp on the reverse.
Ptolemy II Early Diobol
gae706_o
gae706_r
28mm - 15.2gm
Sv564v (monogram)
Numerous early diobols are sometimes found with this same incuse trident stamp on the reverse.
Ptolemy II Early Diobol
gae251_o
gae251_r
24mm - 11.4gm
Sv791 w/A Countermark
Ptolemy III Tripod Series
gae754_o
gae754_r
30mm - 22.8gm
Sv707 -
Tripod countermark at right.
Ptolemy III Tyre Club Series
gae584_o
gae584_r
42mm - 68.4gm
Sv1129 - LI or DI
The two control combinations are not distinguished in Svoronos.
Tripod countermark at right.
Ptolemy IV Tyre
gae311_o
gae311_r
36mm - 34.3gm
Sv1130 - LI or DI
The two control combinations are not distinguished in Svoronos.
Ivy-leaf countermark on the club shown here.
Ptolemy IV Tyre
gae478_o
gae478_r
36mm - 34.3gm
Sv1058 - PI-T-O
This specimen (unique) with caduceus countermark at right.
Ptolemy V Tyre
gae195_o
gae195_r
24mm - 16gm
Sv1397 - EYL
Sv1398 - EYL + cmk
Some with PTOLEMAI obliterated as shown here.
Ptolemy VI

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