|Lot 49. Attica, Athens. Ca. 165/4-42 B.C. AR tetradrachm (28 mm, 17.15 g, 12 h). New Style coinage. Ca. 91/90 B.C. Zenokles and Harmoxenos, magistrates. Helmeted head of Athena right / A-?E, owl standing right on amphora, head facing; across field, magistrates' names: ΞE-NO/KΛHΣ and APMO/ΞE/NOΣ; in right field, Roma enthroned facing, holding long scepter; Γ on amphora, ΠP (ΠΑ?) below; all within laurel wreath. Thompson 1115a. Small area of minor die rust on reverse. Good very fine.
The reverse of this Athenian New Style tetradrachm is most interesting for having the figure of the goddess Roma as the symbol on the reverse, alluding to the sympathies of the magistrates involved with this issue. Although the city had been pro-Roman, some factions within the ruling aristocracy sided with Mithradates VI of Pontos in his war against Rome, and Athens along with many other cities of mainland Greece revolted from Roman rule in 88 B.C. This led to the re-conquest under the Roman general Sulla during the years 88-85 B.C., when most of the city's buildings and fortifications were destroyed. The city was left devastated by these depredations, both physically and economically, for the next half century. In 27 B.C. Augustus reorganized Greece as the Roman province of Achaea, establishing Corinth as the administrative capital and Athens as the cultural center of learning, after which it began to proper once again.
Estimate: US$ 500