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Nomos AG, 8

806152. Sold For $10000

SICILY, Katane. Circa 430-415 BC. AR Litra (12mm, 0.65 g, 6h). Head of Selinos right / KAT-A-NAIΩN, upright winged thunderbolt; two shields flanking. C. Boehringer, "Kataneische probleme: silberne kleinstmünzen," Proceedings of the 9th International Numismatic Congress, Series III, Li 5; Rizzo pl. XIV, 19; Basel -; SNG ANS 1264; SNG Lloyd 911. Superb EF, toned. Exceptional metal. Very rare issue. A masterpiece in miniature.

The Sicilian city of Katane (modern Catania) was a Chalkidian colony founded from Naxos in 729 BC. Katane was located midway along the eastern coast of the island at the southern extremity of the slopes of Mount Aetna. Its fertile territory was coveted by neighboring Syracuse and in 476 BC the Syracusan tyrant Hieron I removed the population of Katane to the inland city of Leontini. Katane was then given the name of Aetna and re-peopled with Syracusan citizens and a group of Dorian mercenaries. On the fall of the Sicilian tyrannies in the late 460s BC, the alien population was expelled and the former inhabitants of Katane returned from exile in Leontini to reclaim their city, which now reverted to its original name. It seems unlikely that any coinage was produced at Katane prior to the events of 476 BC, so any issues bearing the name of the Katanians must postdate the restoration of the original population in 461 BC.