|Lot 33. Islands off Thrace, Thasos. Ca. 148-90/80 B.C. AR tetradrachm (32 mm, 16.99 g, 12 h). Imitative series. Head of young Dionysos right, wreathed with ivy / ΗΡΑΚΛΕΟV[Σ] ΣΩΤΗΡΟΣ ΘΑΣΙΩΝ, Herakles standing facing, head left, resting hand on grounded club and holding lionís skin draped over arm; in inner left field, monogram. HGC 6, 359. Extremely fine.
Thasos flourished due to the substantial wealth it was able to extract from its silver mines, both on the island of Thasos and on the mainland opposite. During the later Hellenistic period, its extensive series of handsome tetradrachms featuring the youthful head of Dionysos on the obverse and Herakles on the reverse became a standard trade coin in the Aegean, and as such was enviously copied throughout much of the Thracian hinterland. This coin is from the earlier period of widespread copying that took place during the 2nd and 1st centuries B.C., and conforms closely to the originals. The later imitations are noted for being engraved in a much coarser style, and in fact, the types on some are such bizarre concoctions that they only resemble the originals in size and metal.
Estimate: US$ 200