|Lot 351. Syria, Seleucis and Pieria. Antiochia ad Orontem. Pseudo-autonomous issue. 1st century A.D. Æ trichalkon (20 mm, 7.40 g, 12 h). Year 44 of the Actian Era (A.D. 13/4). Laureate head of Zeus right / [EΠ]I ΣIΛANOY ANTIOXEΩN, ram leaping right, head turned to look back at star above; below, date (ΔM). McAlee 99; RPC 4269. Dark-green patina, light earthen deposits. Very fine.
In his The Star of Bethlehem: The Legacy of the Magi, Dr. Michael Molnar sees in the reverse design the occultation of Jupiter by the moon in the constellation of Aries, which he identifies as the most probable candidate for the biblical account of the Star of Bethlehem that guided the Magi to the manager where Jesus was born.
Estimate: US$ 75