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Research Coins: Feature Auction

CNG 111, Lot: 181. Estimate $15000.
Sold for $11000. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

KINGS of BOSPOROS. Asander. As king, circa 43-16 BC. AV Stater (20mm, 8.22 g, 1h). Dated RY 7 (41/0 BC). Diademed head right / BAΣIΛEΩΣ AΣANΔPOY, Nike, holding wreath in extended right hand, palm frond in left, standing left on prow left; to inner left, Z (date) above monogram. Frolova & Ireland § 6, 12 corr. (monogram); Natwoka 7a; Anokhin 1322; MacDonald 197; RPC I 1849; HGC 7, 201; DCA 447. EF, underlying luster, tiny die break on reverse. Very rare.

Ex Tkalec (9 May 2005), lot 56.

After defeating Pharnakes II in 47 BC, Asander hoped that Caesar would recognize him as king of Bosporos. Instead, in 46 BC Caesar appointed Mithradates of Pergamon, the illegitimate son of Mithradates VI Eupator and a personal friend. Asander, however, subsequently defeated and killed Mithradates. To support his claim to the throne, Asander married Dynamis, the daughter of Pharnakes II, but for the first four years of his reign, he claimed the title ‘archon’ only, rather than that of ‘basileus.’ The reason for this may be that as Rome had formally recognized the archon Pharnakes II as king, Asander was hoping they would do the same on his behalf – a hope confirmed by Octavian in 43 BC. Consequently, all of Asander’s regnal dates are reckoned from his first year as archon (circa 47/6 BC).