SICILY. Syracuse . Second Democracy, 466-405 BC. Dilitron (Gold, 11 mm, 1.77 g, 5 h), signed by the engraver Mi..., struck circa 406. ΣΥΡΑΚΟΣΙΩΝ Head of Athena to left, wearing crested Attic helmet ornamented with a coiled serpent and a palmette; below neck, engraver’s initials; to left, fillet bearing the name of the Syrakusans. Rev. Facing head of the Medusa, with tongue outstretched, at the center of an aegis ornamented with coiling snakes. C. Boehringer, “Zu Finanzpolitik und Münzprägung des Dionysios von Syrakus”, Essays Thompson, pl. 38, 12. Same dies as Roma XI, 2016, 114. Very rare, one of a few known examples. Some scratches on the obverse , otherwise, very fine.
This lovely gold coin was struck just at the end of the 5th century, when all Sicily was going through the crisis caused by the Carthaginian invasion. Akragas had probably already fallen when this coin was struck and Dionysios I was just coming to power in Syracuse – he soon authorized a much more extensive coinage of gold for military use. The dies for this coin were engraved by the artist Im..., (or perhaps Mi...) who also signed a Syrakusan tetradrachm die (Tudeer 67: for the beautiful but worn example in the British Museum, see Kraay & Hirmer 113).
|Price realized||6'000 CHF|
|Starting price||3'500 CHF|