• sulla80

Early Cistophoric Tetradrachm with Leopard

Updated: Sep 12

Although I happily use digital resources, I do enjoy a nice hardcover book...The Early Cistophoric Coinage by Fred S. Kleiner and Sydney P. Noe, ANS, NY, 1977 arrived in the mail today - a bargain, barely used, for $20 and a complement on the shelf to Metcalf Later Republican Cistophori. Here's the Early Cistophoric coin that came a few days earlier - not quite as good a bargain.

Obv: Cista mystica with half-open lid, from which a serpent issues to left; all within ivy wreath

Rev: Two coiled serpents with heads erect; between them an ornamental bow-case with strap at right, containing a strung bow. To left, EΦE, head of leopard right

Size: 12.77g 29mm

Ref: Kleiner & Noe: Series 1:1-a p.41

The 1 (as in 1-b) indicates the obverse die and the b indicates the reverse dies. I find it somewhat surprising that all known dies are in fairly brief book - but sure enough my coin is a double die match with the coin on Plate XI. Kleiner (also available online) mentions that as of publication there were only 11 known coins from Ephesus Series 1 & 2.

Leopards, in general, are not a common feature on ancient coins. Here's a closer look at the leopard head, tangled with serpent.

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