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Research Coins: Feature Auction

 
710974
Sale: Triton IX, Lot: 974. Estimate $5000. 
Closing Date: Monday, 9 January 2006. 
Sold For $7000. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

CILICIA, Mallos. Circa 385-333 BC. AR Stater (10.20 g, 2h). Bearded head of Herakles right, lion's skin tied around neck / MAL, head of satrap (Tiribazos or Autophradates?) right, wearing Persian headdress. SNG Levante 153 var. (no ethnic); SNG Levante Suppl. 25 (same obv. die); SNG France 396 (same dies); Winzer 10.4 (Tiribazos) var. (same); SNG Copenhagen -; BMC 28; SNG von Aulock 5716 var. (shield on obv.). EF, small die break in field on obverse. Beautifully engraved dies (see Triton VII, lot 298, for another EF example from these dies that realized $12,000). ($5000)

Winzer's attribution to Tiribazos is based on the similarity of this coin's portrait to others bearing that satrap's name. However, SNG France dates this issue to circa 380 BC, and SNG Levante to circa 380-360 BC. Since both of these dates fall after the conclusion of Tiribazos' tenure as satrap in 385 BC (see below), and this issue has the city ethnic rather than Tiribazos' name, it is difficult to assign this issue to him. Winzer's own conclusion about the satrapal portrait on his 10.4, which he calls an "idealisiertes Satrapenportrait," further undercuts the attribution to Tiribazos. Given Levante’s dating of this issue it is possible that the portrait is of Autophradates (see below), or perhaps an idealized portrait of the great king himself in satrapal garb (cf. the Alexander Mosaic at Herculaneum)

In 401 BC, Tiribazos was the governor of the western portion of Armenia and the subordinate of Orontes, the satrap of all Armenia (Anabasis 4.4.4). He was a central figure in the negotiations between Persia and Sparta that resulted in the treaty of Antalkidas in 387 BC. The following year Tiribazos was appointed to command the Persian fleet against Evagoras of Cyprus. Although successful, Tiribazos incurred the enmity of the expedition’s infantry commander, the same Orontes who had been his superior in Armenia, and was recalled in 385 BC. Tiribazos was acquitted of the charges and, in addition, he was promised the hand of the king’s daughter, Amastris. The king, however, broke his word, and, in retaliation, shortly thereafter, Tiribazos convinced the king’s son, Darius, to revolt. Foiled in this revolt, Tiribazos, now a fugitive, attempted to avoid capture but was killed (Plut. Artax. 27-29).

Autophradates distinguished himself in the Great Satraps Revolt (365-360 BC) by supporting Artaxerxes II and imprisoning the satrap of Lydia and Ionia, Artabazos (Dem. Aristoc. 671). Although he was not in direct control of Mallos, his portrait may still have been employed on coinage there if, acting under the Great King’s authority, he required money from the city’s mint (similar to the issues of Phanabazos at Tarsos). In 333 BC, Autophradates, along with his fellow-commander, Pharnabazos, took over the Persian fleet and completed the seige of Mytilene begun by Memnon. In the Greek revolts which arose in the Aegean and western Asia Minor as a result of Alexander III’s victories, Autophradates tried to return these areas to Persian control (Arrian, Anab. 2.1; Arist. Pol. 2.4.10). Little else is known of his subsequent career, although it is possible that he was among those satraps who presented themselves before Alexander at Zadracarta (Arrian, Anab. 3.23).