Kings of Macedon. Temp. Alexander III – Philip III. Uncertain mint in western Asia Minor, c. 330/25-320 BC

Kings of Macedon. Temp. Alexander III – Philip III. Uncertain mint in western Asia Minor, c. 330/25-320 BC

4,250.00

AV Stater, 8.53g (18.5mm, 12h). In the name of Alexander III, the Great. Helmeted head of Athena right / Nike standing left, holding wreath and stylis; thunderbolt in left field.

References:  Cf. Price 164 (for type); ANSNS 21 (1997) Troxell, Studies, p. 100, note b

Grade:  Good VF, underlying luster.  (gk1150)

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There were a variety of styles produced for the extensive gold staters struck under or posthumously for Alexander the Great. The styles obviously were dependant on what mint struck the coin. Some exhibit a feminine Athena with a pleasant face, others show a masculine side of Athena with harsher features. The reverse imagery of the Nike can also be extremely distinct from other mints some showing a lythe beautifully curved goddess of victory. Others are almost cartoonish showing her with short legs and bland features.

This coin is special for a few reasons. The Athena on the obverse is a departure from the typical style that one would expect. The reverse type with the thunderbolt is normally designated to the Macedonian Amphipolis mint, however, this rendition of Athena shows a helmet that looks distinctly different from other staters. Research suggests that this coin which copies the mint mark from the Macedonian mint was actually created in Western Asia Minor as the type is stylistically consistent with those types. Troxell elaborates on this theory in her essay, Studies in the Macedonian Coinage of Alexander the Great from the ANS Numismatic Studies from 1997.

The reason for the matching mint mark, the thunderbolt, is an enigma.