AGATHOKLES SILVER TETRADRACHM – EARLY FINE STYLE KORE/NIKE WITH TROPHY ISSUE PUBLISHED IN IERARDI AND EX PRITCHARD 1925 – CHOICE AU STAR NGC GRADED GREEK SICILY COIN (Inv. 13436)
SICILY. SYRACUSE. AGATHOCLES, ca. 317-289 BC.
Silver Tetradrachm, 16.98 g., 25 mm., struck ca. 310-306 BC.
Obv. KOPAΣ, wreathed head of Kore right.
Rev. AΓAΘOKΛEOΣ, Nike standing right, nailing armor to trophy, AI monogram beneath right wing, triskeles in right field (off planchet).
Ierardi 104f (O 21 / R 65, this coin listed); ex Leu 15, 5/4/1976, 129 and previously Pritchard Collection auctioned by Sotheby’s 2/21/1929, lot 29.
NGC graded CHOICE AU STAR, Strike 4/5, Surface 5/5, FINE STYLE. This coin belongs to the early part of a series that represents Agathocles’ efforts at creating a totally new type of coinage, different from the Classical Syracuse emissions which he recreated as well. The obverse depicts a delicately classicizing head of the goddess Kore (Persephone). The reverse is devoted to a stunning depiction of Nike (Victory), nailing the enemy’s armor to a trophy, an image that later became a staple of Roman triumphal art. While the early emissions are struck from exceptionally artistic dies, like this specimen, the later products of the same series are of a much cruder style, and some scholars have even suggested that they are not the products of the Syracuse mint.