THESSALY, Pharsalos
AE Trichalkon. 6.32g, 23.8mm
MINTED: THESSALY, Pharsalos, 4th-3rd century BC
REF: HGC 4, 649
OBVERSE: Helmeted head of Athena facing, turned slightly to left, spear and shield on shoulders.

REVERSE: [Φ]-AP-[ΣA], Armoured Thessalian horseman brandishing flail, riding right on prancing horse; behind him, his attendant walking right carrying a spare flail.

 

Grade/Notes:

Almost Very Fine. Dark brown patina. Rough surfaces, but decent details with a nice face of Athena. 

 

Provenance:

Ex BCD Collection, with his handwritten tag noting "V. Ex Thess., June 94, Sfr. 50."

The BCD Collection was possibly the largest and most important private collection of Greek coinage ever assembled.  Over the course of five decades, the collector, known publicly by the initials BCD, acquired over 50,000 coins representing the major citiies and regions of ancient Greece.  An accomplished numismatist, BCD studied not just the historical context but also the art and chronology of the coins, with some of the results of these studies eventually finding their way into the notes he provided for the catalogues of the sale of his coins.  Many of these published catalogues are now used as the standard references for the regions they cover.  A provenance to the BCD Collection is one of the most desirable that a Greek coin can possess.

 

Historical Notes:

Pharsalos was an important city located in southern Thessaly that in antiquity was protected by a massive, Cyclopean Wall.  It has also been identified by some as the capital of the Mycenaean era kingdom of Phthia, which was the homeland of the great Greek hero Achilles.  The city housed numerous temples, and was especially well known for sanctuary dedicated to Thetis, the sea nymph who was the mother of Achilles. 

 

When Xerxes I of Persia invaded Greece (480-479 BC), Pharsalos was one of the few Thessalian cities to stand with Athens against his armies.  By the late 5th to early 4th centuries BC, Pharsalos had become the preeminent Thessalian city.

 

Like other cities in Thessaly, Pharsalos was well-known for its magnificent horses.  Bucephalus, the horse of Alexander the Great, was originally from Pharsalos.

THESSALY, Pharsalos . 4th-3rd centuries BC . AE Trichalkon . Ex BCD Collection

SKU: 3503
S$60.00Price
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