Kings of Paphlagonia, Pylaimenes II/III Euergetes. c. 133-103 BC

Kings of Paphlagonia, Pylaimenes II/III Euergetes. c. 133-103 BC


AE 18, 4.22g (18mm, 12h). Facing bull / ΒΑΣΙΛΕΩΣ / ΠYΛAIMENOY EYEPΓETOY. Winged kerykeion.

References: SNG BM Black Sea 1555-6; HGC 7, 441

Grade: Very sharply struck and one of the nicest examples known. Pretty dark patina with some remnants of old dirt. Mint State (gk1327)

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Ancient Paphlagonia is located in modern day Anatolia, located in northern Turkey. It is one of the most ancient nations and even played a part in Homer’s writings of the Trojan War. The King Pylaemenes and his son Harpalion were forced out of their ancestral homeland of Paphlagonia during a revolution and along with the Trojan prince Antenor settled in Venetia (modern day Venice). 

Of course the name in which this coin is struck was a few thousand years after the first Pylaemenes lived. It appears that all subsequent rulers of Paphlagonia took the first name of Pylaimenes to link themselves historically to the great King himself. 

The area of Paphlagonia was conquered by Croesus in the 5th century BC but they continued to maintain their own form of government under different princes. Eventually they were conquered by the Macedonians under Alexander the Great. After Alexander’s death it was given to Eumenes of Pergamom, along with neighboring Cappadocia and Mysia to control. Eventually power for the area was taken by Pontus until the fall of Mithradates in 65BC when the Romans took control.

The bull on the obverse of this coin is among the nicest on the market ever offered.