THE COLLECTION
RESOURCES
SICILY

AKRAGAS
450-440 BC


                AR Pentalitron (4.04 g, 16mm, 8).

      Obv: Sea eagle standing left on Ionic capital; ΠEN above.
      Rev: Crab; AKRA below.
      Ref: Westermark, Period II, 445 (O1/R2); HGC 2, 112.

Notes: This pentalitra was struck in the lastest phase of the second period of coinage at Akragas, which is characterized by the large series of eagle/crab tetradrachms. This period ended with the massive defeat of Akragas by Syracuse at the South Himera river around 440 BC. Although these fractional coins are marked as pentalitra, they are equivalent in weight to the drachms struck at other major Sicilian mints at the time (Gela, Himera, Leontini, Messana, and Syracuse). Only two obverse and reverse dies are known for this issue at Akragas, suggesting the issue was rather limited in size. Westermark records 24 examples total, with 16 in public collections, leaving 8 in private hands. The present coin was unknown to Westermark, perhaps the only one not included in her die study (the three in CoinArchives are all recorded: CNG 50, lot 460 is Westermark 446.4; CNG 72, lot 173 is [likely] Westermark 445.7; and NAC 29, lot 68 is Westermark 445.2).


SYRACUSE
Gelon I

485-478 BC

                AR Drachm (4.22 g, 15.5mm, 4).

      Struck: Circa 485-480 BC
      Obv: Horseman riding right.
      Rev: Diademed head of Arethousa right; ΣV-ЯAKOΣION around.
      Ref: Boehringer Series IV, 54 (V29/R37); HGC 2, 1359.
      Pedig: Ex Friend of a Scholar Collection (Classical Numismatic
                Review XLI.1, Spring 2016), no. 403398, purchased from
                Maison Platt, November 1984.

Notes: This coin is from the very rare first issue of drachms struck at Syracuse. The die break on the reverse under the neck of Arethousa apparently developed before or immediately after the issue was struck, as nearly all examples known have it. The few that appeared recently on the market without the die break may actually be modern forgeries.



Gelon II
Circa 275-215 BC

                AR 4 Litrai – Drachm (3.38 g, 16mm, 1).

      Struck: Circa 218-215 BC
      Obv: Diademed head left.
      Rev: ΓEΛΩNOΣ ΣYPAKOΣIOY
                Eagle standing right on thunderbolt; BA to left, Φ to right.
      Ref: CCO 297 (D1/R2); BAR Issue 67; HGC 2, 1563.

Notes: Gelon was the eldest son of Hieron II, king of Syracuse from 275-215 BC. Most references simply list him as such, but he actually was made king by his father shortly after his father was elevated to the position. Although his father was ostensibly the senior ruler, Gelon appears to have great latitude of autonomy. The exact dates of his rule as king are not known, but he did die shortly before his father, perhaps even in 216 BC. Gelon was a close friend of the famed Archemides, who dedicated a treatise, called Arenarius.