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Research Coins: Printed Auction

 

Very Rare Profile Head Issue

Triton XXII, Lot: 223. Estimate $20000.
Sold for $30000. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

ISLANDS off ATTICA, Aegina. Circa 456/45-431 BC. AR Stater (20mm, 12.39 g, 9h). Land tortoise, head in profile, with segmented shell / Large square incuse with heavy skew pattern. Meadows, Aegina, Group IIIb; Milbank pl. II, 13; HGC 6, 437 var. (head not in profile); SNG Copenhagen 517 var. (same); Dewing 1683 var. (same); Gillet 948 var. (same); Jameson 1200 var. (same); Pozzi 1635 var. (same). EF, deeply toned, edge split. Struck on a broad flan. Very rare with head in profile.


From the Gasvoda Collection, purchased from Peter Weiss. Ex Manhattan Sale IV (8 January 2013), lot 46; Sotheby’s (8 July 1996), lot 55.

The head of the land tortoise on this massive coinage is typically engraved shown from above, with the tortoise looking forward. Very rarely are they encountered with the head shown in profile. The profile head was canonical on the earlier, sea turtle coinage, thus the land tortoise coins of this variety may represent a short transitional issue at the beginning of this period.