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Research Coins: Feature Auction

 
11000468
Triton XXII, Lot: 468. Estimate $5000.
Sold for $4000. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

BAKTRIA, Greco-Baktrian Kingdom. Eukratides I Megas. Circa 170-145 BC. AR Tetradrachm (33mm, 16.96 g, 12h). Diademed heroic bust left, seen from behind, wearing crested helmet adorned with bull's horn and ear, brandishing spear in right hand / BAΣIΛEΩΣ MEΓAΛOY around, EYKPATIΔOY in exergue, the Dioskouroi, holding palm fronds and spears, on horses rearing right; monogram in lower right field. Bopearachchi 8B; Bopearachchi & Rahman 255; SNG ANS 485; MIG Type 179a; HGC 12, 132. Near EF, traces of deposits, hint of porosity.


From the Menlo Park Collection; purchased from Frank L. Kovacs, 1998-2002.

True to his self-granted title, Eukratides Megas was undoubtedly greatest of the Greco-Baktrian kings. Reigning circa 170-145 BC, his vast realm was larger than any other Greek-ruled kingdom of the time. Its wealth was stupendous, judging by the number of his surviving coins. Among the most dramatic issues was this remarkable type depicting the king heroically nude, his muscled back turned toward the viewer in a contrapposto pose, brandishing a spear. The portrait, rendered in sculptural high relief, exemplifies the virtuosity achieved by the artisans of this far-flung Greek enclave.