≠≠ Ancient Greek coins of the Seleucids, Bactria, Judaea, Parthia, Persia, Phoenicia and Syria for sale - Edgar L. Owen Galleries

(The East)



The Bactrian kingdom was the easternmost of the Hellenistic Greek kingdoms of the successors of Alexander the Great. It originated around 256 BC when Diodotus I declared himself independent of the Seleukid king Antiochos II. Map at maximum extent. The coins of the Graeco-Bactrian period preserve the finest in Hellenistic portraiture.

EUTHYDEMOS I, c. 230-190 BC

EUKRATIDES I, c. 171-135 BC





MENANDER, c. 160-145 BC


10223. INDO-GREEK KINGDOM, MENANDER I. Ca. 165/55-130 B.C. AE unit (12 x 12 mm, 2.59 g, 12 h). BASILEWS SWTHPOS MENAND[POY], head of elephant right, wearing bell around neck / "Maharajasa tratarasa Menamdrasa" in Kharosthi, club of Herakles upward; in left field, monogram; in right field, A. Bopearachchi 28E; SNG ANS 923-31. EF, dark green patina. Choice example, as good as they come.






10226. PERSIA, ACHAEMENID KINGS. Time of Xerxes II to Artaxerxes II. Circa 420-375 BC. AR Siglos (12mm, 5.50 g). Persian king or hero in kneeling-running stance right, holding spear and bow / Incuse punch. Carradice Type IIIb C (pl. XIV, 36); BMC Arabia pl. XXV, 15. VF, banker's mark on reverse. Includes a David R. Sear Certificate of Authenticity.


11256. CHOICE PERSIA, ACHAEMENID KINGS. 375-340 BC, Siglos, 15 mm, 5.48 g. Obv: Kneeling running king with bow and spear, Rx: Irregular incuse. Good VF. Well centered on flan. Much better than usual example.


11259. CHOICE PERSIA, ACHAEMENID KINGS. 375-340 BC, Siglos, 15 mm, 5.46 g. Obv: Kneeling running king with bow and dagger, Rx: Irregular incuse. EF. Well centered on flan. Much better than usual example.




SELEUKID KINGS (history, maps, family tree)

SELEUKOS I, NIKATOR, 312-280, successor of Alexander III the Great in Syria

12965. SELEUKID KINGS, SELEUKOS I, 312-280 BC. Silver Tetradrachm, 24 mm, 16.71 g. Seleukeia on the Tigris II mint. Struck circa 296/5-281 BC. Laureate head of Zeus right / BAΣIΛEΩΣ ΣEΛEYKOY, Athena brandishing spear and shield driving quadriga of elephants, anchor mintmark above. Good VF. Nicely centered, good metal. Scarce.

After the successful conclusion of the Babylonian War against Antigonos Monophthalmos in 309 BC, Seleukos had secured his western border. He then turned his eyes eastwards and attacked Chandragupta, the ruler of the Mauryan Empire in northern India. Sometime around 303 BC a peace treaty was agreed, one term of which was that Seleukos would receive 500 elephants from Chandragupta. The chariot of elephants on this coin commemorates these elephants.


9423. SELEUKID KINGS, SELEUKOS I, 312-280 BC. AE 22. Laureate head of Apollo right / Athena standing right, brandishing spear and shield; upturned anchor to right. SC 15/1; Newell, WSM 911; SNG Spaer 3. Near EF and a choice example. Scarce.


SELEUKOS II, KALLINIKOS, 246-226, elder son of Antiochos II and Laodike I

ANTIOCHOS HIERAX, 246-227, younger son of Antiochos II and Laodike

11016. SELEUKID KINGS, ANTIOCHOS HIERAX. Circa 242-227 BC. AR Tetradrachm (29mm, 16.27 g, 12h). Alexandria Troas mint. Head right, wearing winged diadem / Apollo seated left on omphalos, testing arrow, resting hand on bow; monograms to outer left and right; in exergue, horse grazing right. SC 877 var. (unlisted control on right); HGC 9, 399g. VF, nicely toned. An excellent style portrait. From the Stephen Glover Collection. Scarce.


ANTIOCHOS, 175-170, son of Seleukos IV


11278. SELEUKID KINGS, ANTIOCHOS, son of Seleukos IV, 175-170 BC. AR Drachm (4.23 g, 19 mm, 12h). Antioch mint. Diademed head of the child king right / Apollo Delphios seated left on omphalos; tripod to outer left, Φ in exergue. Sear 6974; SC 1370; CSE I 94 (This coin!). Good VF. A superb example of an extremely rare type. Toned over luster on reverse. High relief. Provenance: Ex Houghton collection, CSE I 94.

On the assassination of Seleukos IV in 175 Heliodoros seized power as regent for the late king's five-year-old son, Antiochos. But Seleukos' brother, also named Antiochos, invaded Syria and made himself master of the kingdom, reigning as Antiochos IV. His young nephew disappears from history after several years of nominal joint rule. Only a few coins were struck with his portrait. Commentary adapted from David Sear's 'Greek Coins and Their Values'.


ANTIOCHOS IV, EPIPHANES, 175-164, younger son of Antiochos III

DEMETRIOS I, SOTER, 162-150, son of Seleukos IV

8584. SELEUCID KINGS, DEMETRIOS I, 162-150 BC. Tetradrachm, Sear 7015. His head r./Tyche std. l. VF+. Choice finely styled reverse example with sharp figure of Nike supporting Tyche's throne.


9362. SELEUKID KINGS, DEMETRIOS I, 162-150 BC. AE21, BMC 45. His diademed hd. r./Stern of galley l. AEF. Scarce. Beautiful Hellenistic portrait.


DEMETRIOS II, NIKATOR, first reign 145-140, elder son of Demetrios I

6545. SELEUCID KINGS OF SYRIA, DEMETRIOS II NIKATOR. First reign, 145-140 BC. Tetradrachm, S7056, 29 mm., 14.17 g. Tyre mint. Diademed head of Demetrios II right. / Eagle standing left with one foot on prow. EF, small area of roughness on cheek.


TRYPHON, 142-138, general and regent for Antiochos VI


11025. SELEUKID KINGS, TRYPHON, 142-138 BC. AE (17mm, 5.09 g, 1h). Antioch mint. Diademed head right / Spiked Macedonian helmet adorned with wild goat horns; piloi of the Dioskouroi to inner left. SC 2034.2d; HGC 9, 1061. EF, dark green patina. A choice perfectly centered example on a large flan with a fine style portrait.


ANTIOCHOS VII, EUERGETES (SIDETES), 138-129, younger brother of Demetrios II

7206. SELEUCID KINGS, ANTIOCHOS VII, 138-129 BC. AR Tetradrachm. Head of Antiochus VII r. /Athena stg with Nike. Choice EF. Sharp.


7209. SELEUCID KINGS, ANTIOCHOS VII, 138-129 BC. AR Tetradrachm. Head of Antiochus VII r. /Athena stg with Nike. Choice EF. Sharp.


DEMETRIOS II, NIKATOR, second reign 129-125, elder son of Demetrios I

10786. SELEUKID KINGS OF SYRIA, DEMETRIOS II, NIKATOR, Second reign, 129-125 BC. AR Tetradrachm (30mm, 16.70 g, 12h). Antioch mint. Diademed head right / Zeus Nikephoros seated left; Ξ to outer left, O below throne. SC 2166.2c; HGC 9, 1117b. Good VF, toned.


ALEXANDER II, ZABINAS, 128-123, claimed adopted son of Alexander Balas

ANTIOCHOS VIII, GRYPOS, 121-96, son of Cleopatra Thea and Demetrios II

9394. SELEUCID KINGS, ANTIOCHOS VIII, 121-96 BC. AR Tetradrachm, Sear 7143. Fine style hellenistic portrait r./Zeus stg. AEF.


8586. SELEUCID KINGS, ANTIOCHOS VIII, 121-96 BC. AR Tetradrachm, Sear 7143. His portrait head r./Zeus stg. with scepter and star within laurel wreath. EF. Old cabinet toning. A superb example of Hellenistic portrait art which renders with the greatest sensivity the likeness of this ruthless and complex king.


ANTIOCHOS IX, KYZIKENOS, 113-95, son of Antiochos VII and Cleopatra


9424. SELEUKID, ANTIOCHOS IX, 113-95 BC. AE 20, Sear 7173. Winged bust Eros r./Nike advancing l. with wreath. VF. NOTE: According to Arthur Houghton and Oliver Hoover, authors of a new catalog of Seleukid coins, this type normally has the date in the left field, but this example has it in the exergue, and bungled at that. The beta and sigma are backwards and the iota should precede the sigma on the left. A very rare variant thus and unpublished except in their book (this coin).


SELEUKOS VI, EPIPHANES NIKATOR, 95-94, eldest son of Antiochos VIII, nephew of Antiochos IX, cousin of Antiochos X

10503. SELEUKID KINGS of SYRIA. SELEUKOS VI EPIPHANES NIKATOR. Circa 96-94 BC. AR Tetradrachm (26mm, 15.60 g, 1h). Antioch mint. Struck circa 95/4 BC. Diademed head right / Zeus Nikephoros seated left, holding lotus-tipped scepter; A/(monogram)/A to outer left, A under throne; all within wreath. SC 2415d; HGC 9, 1270. Good VF, toned, minor porosity.


ANTIOCHOS XII, DIONYSOS, 88-84, youngest of the 5 sons of Antiochos VIII, brother of Demetrios III, brother of Philip

11020. SELEUCID KINGS, ANTIOCHOS XII DIONYSOS. 87/6-83/2 BC. AE (20mm, 5.53 g, 11h). Damaskos mint. Struck 85/4-84/3 BC. Diademed head right / Zeus Nikephoros standing left; monogram to outer left. SC 2478; HGC 9, 1328. EF. Choice example with an excellent sharp portrait of this rare king. Dark green patina with earthen highlights. From the Stephen Glover Collection.



10872. SELEUCID KINGS, TIGRANES II, the Great, King of Armenia (95-56). Artaxata mint. Obv: Draped bust right, wearing five-pointed Armenian tiara. Rev: S L WS S L W G . Heracles, nude, lion's skin on the back, standing left, holding club with his right hand; in field left monogram, in right field. Bedoukian 101. Condition: Good very fine. Weight: 5.2 gm. Diameter: AE18 mm. Choice example with a clear excellent style portrait. Actually a more lifelike portrait than the silver tetradrachms.

In 83 BC the Syrians, wearied by the endless fratricidal wars of the Seleukids, called upon Tigranes II, the King of Armenia, to restore order in their country. He defeated Philip and ruled the Syrian kingdom for the following fourteen years, issuing coins on the Seleukid pattern. Eventually he was driven out of Syria by the Roman general Lucullus.




10201. SYRIA, SELEUKIS AND PIERIA, ANTIOCH. 1st century BC. AE Tetrachalkon (19mm, 9.14 g, 2h). Laureate head of Zeus right / Zeus Nikephoros seated left; [date] in exergue. Cf. McAlee 30A-42A; HGC 9, 1371. VF, dark brown patina, lighter highlights. Choice example. Ex. Collection RW.