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Research Coins: Feature Auction


The Earliest Drachm of Kolophon
Published by Langlotz

CNG 111, Lot: 235. Estimate $1000.
Sold for $1700. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

IONIA, Kolophon. Circa 480-450 BC. AR Drachm (15.5mm, 5.49 g, 1h). Laureate head of Apollo right, with frontal eye / Kithara within incuse square. Milne, Colophon –; E. Langlotz, Studien zur nordgreichischen Kunst (Mainz, 1975), pl. 6, 11 (this coin). Good VF, toned, a hint of porosity, some die wear on obverse. Interesting archaizing style with frontal eye Apollo, extremely rare thus.

From the Ealing Collection. Ex Spink Numismatic Circular CVIII.1 (February 2000), no. 32; Leu 61 (17 May 1995), lot 139; Münzen und Medaillen AG 41 (18 June 1970), lot 197.

Milne did not distinguish between the form of the eye on Apollo in his description of his Period II drachms, but clearly there are rare examples that have a frontal eye, as here (see, e.g., CNG E-245, lot 144). It is likely that these represent the earliest issues for this period. The cataloger of the Leu 36 sale called this coin “the earliest known drachm of Kolophon.”