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The Final Alexander Issue at Odessos

CNG 94, Lot: 159. Estimate $300.
Sold for $1700. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

THRACE, Odessos. Circa 72/1 BC. AR Tetradrachm (29mm, 16.22 g, 12h). In the name and types of Alexander III of Macedon. Lakon, magistrate. Head of Herakles right, wearing lion skin / Zeus Aëtophoros seated left; ΛΑΚΩN in inner left field, ΟΔH in exergue. Cf. Callataÿ group 3; Topalov, Odesos 79; Price 1194. Near EF, lightly toned. Very rare final issue of Alexanders at Odessos.

This issue, with the full name of Lakon, must be the final Alexander type at Odessos. The earlier issues of Lakon, as noted in Callataÿ, display the head of Herakles with the features of Mithradates VI of Pontos, and appear to progress from a short abbreviation of Lakon’s name to a longer form (La-, Lak-, Lako-). This variety, with Lakon’s full name, should follow these chronologically. The fact that the portrait of Herakles no longer has the features of Mithradates suggests that this issue most likely falls after the cities of the western Black Sea were taken by the Romans under Lucullus in 72/1 BC.