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CNG Feature Auction 114

Lot nuber 92

THRACE, Orthagoreia. Circa 340s-330s BC. AR Stater (23mm, 10.12 g, 8h).


CNG Feature Auction 114
Lot: 92.
 Estimated: $ 1 500

Greek, Silver

Sold For $ 3 250. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

Go to Live

THRACE, Orthagoreia. Circa 340s-330s BC. AR Stater (23mm, 10.12 g, 8h). Bust of Artemis right, quiver over shoulder / Chalkidian helmet facing; star above, monogram below. AMNG III/2, 2; HGC 3, 599 (Macedon). Darkly toned, some old scratches under tone. VF.

From the Weise Collection. Ex G. Hirsch 272 (4 May 2011), lot 179; De La Tour Collection (Hess-Divo 314, 4 May 2009), lot 1069, purchased from Antika, Lyon, October 1984; Spink Zurich 13 (9 May 1984), lot 582.

The conventional placement of Orthagoreia in Macedon is perplexing. Both of the only ancient literary sources, Strabo 7a.1.48 and Pliny, HN 4.42–3, place the city in Thrace, and all of the recorded find spots of its coinage are in Thrace (see Psoma, Maroneia, pp. 193–4). While the city was likely founded by Philip II, some of whose rare silver fractions mimic the obverse types of Orthagoreia’s silver, and the reverse type is of a Chalkidian helmet, these Macedonian connections provide insufficient evidence to place the city in Macedonia. The traditional attribution dates back to Eckhel (ii.76), who cited a late source that (erroneously) identified Orthagoreia with Stageira in Macedonia. B.V. Head and others reiterated this attribution, while P. Gardner (History of Ancient Coinage, p. 325) and H. Gaebler (AMNG III/2, p. 92) accurately challenged this evidence, and insisted the city was in Thrace. Interestingly, though, Gaebler still listed these coins in his volume of AMNG on Macedon, which likely perpetuated the incorrect notion of the city’s location. Among the standard references, apparently only the catalogers of SNG Copenhagen and SNG Fitzwilliam recognized the attribution to Thrace. With a large quantity of bronze issues of Orthagoreia appearing in the excavations at Maroneia, S. Psoma devoted a chapter of her work on the coin finds of Maroneia to review the totality of evidence on the city (Psoma, Maroneia, pp. 193–204). She convincingly argues that Orthagoreia was founded in the vicinity of cape Serrhion by Philip II, in connection with his campaigns in Thrace in the 340s BC. Evidence suggests that the city was originally populated with Macedonian settlers and was later synoecized with Maroneia near the end of the 4th century BC. No evidence of the city exists from the Hellenistic period, so it appears that Orthagoreia did not flourish after the time of Alexander, and was eventually abandoned or destroyed.

The final winners of all CNG Feature Auction 114 lots will be determined during the live online sale that will be held on 13-14 May 2020. This lot is in Session 1, which begins 13 May 2020 at 9 AM ET.

UPDATE: As the CNG staff and many of our clients remain under social distancing and other restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic, CNG 114 will be held as an internet only auction. The sale will take place as scheduled on 13-14 May 2020.

Winning bids are subject to a 20% buyer's fee for bids placed on this website and 22.50% for all others.

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