Lot 141. Thraco-Macedonian Region(?), Uncertain mint. 5th century B.C. AR triobol(?).
Thraco-Macedonian Region(?), Uncertain mint. 5th century B.C. AR triobol(?) (11 mm, 2.41 g). Lion's head facing / Square incuse punch. SNG ANS -; SNG Copenhagen -; Rosen -; Klein -. Extremely rare and seemingly unpublished. Very fine.
Where exactly this coin was struck has not been determined. Stylistically, the coins shows marked similarities to coins from Akanthos in Macedonia, Pantikapaion in Cimmerian Bosporos, and also Velia in Lucania, three widely spaced locales geographically. The latter mint, Velia, can safely be excluded as a possibility because the coin does not fit with weight standard at use there nor does the plain square incuse punch of the reverse have any precedence. Additionally, while facing lion heads are common numismatic motifs during the early classical period in Asia Minor, the fabric and style of our coin is far different from any that are published from there. The facing lion on the obverse is similar in style to early Akanthian coins, but the incuse at Akanthos is always quadripartite. At Pantikapaion the lion is similar but not quite the same, and coins from Pantikapaion generally have some design in the incuse except for a couple of the earliest issues. The weight of the evidence suggests a northern Greek provenance, probably an as yet unidentified mint operating in the region of Macedonia or Thrace.