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Classical Numismatic Group > Triton XXIVAuction date: 19 January 2021
Lot number: 915

Lot description:


SELEUCIS and PIERIA, Antioch. Mark Antony & Cleopatra. Circa 36-34 BC. AR Tetradrachm (26mm, 15.03 g, 12h). BACIΛICCA KΛЄOΠATPA ΘЄA NЄωTЄPA, diademed bust of Cleopatra right, wearing earring, necklace, and embroidered dress / ANTωNIOC AVTOKPATωP TRITON TPIωN ANΔPωN, bare head of Antony right. McAlee 174/1; Prieur 27; RPC I 4094; HGC 9, 1361. Toned, some porosity/roughness, minor flan crack, trace of double strike on reverse. Good VF. Excellent portrait of Antony & Cleopatra.

The obverse legend is usually translated as "Queen Cleopatra, the younger goddess" or "...the newer goddess." Ted Buttrey ("Thea Neotera," MN VI [1954], pp. 95-109) read the legend rather differently: "Queen Cleopatra Thea, junior." Essentially, this would make her Cleopatra Thea II and thus the namesake of the Seleucid queen Cleopatra Thea (ruled 125-121 BC), the daughter of Ptolemy VI and Cleopatra II. Buttrey argued that such tetradrachms of Antony and Cleopatra officially mark Cleopatra as reigning "...not as Egyptian conquerer but as a Seleucid queen."


While the coinage is traditionally given to the Antioch mint, this attribution is by no means certain. The authors of RPC (pp. 601-2) thought diffrently: "...the portraits might suggest that one should look for a mint further south in Cleopatra's 'Phoenician' kingdom; an alternative explanation might be that they were made on the move by Antony, after wintering in Antioch 37/36."

Estimate: 50000 USD