Greek Cities and Regions - Ancient coin references
  

This subject too vast to even summarize and this page will be far from complete. This page focuses on modern auction-sale catalogs, but first mentions some books.

Oliver Hoover is half way through writing the best series of reference works on coins of the regions of the Greek world.  "Handbook of Coins of ... " is very well illustrated and very thorough. Most types you will encounter are in there. Published by CNG you can check of their site for the volumes that have been published so far. As of January 2018 nine (of 13? 14?) volumes are available.

For many years the best collector's outline was Greek Coins and Their Values in two volumes (Europe and Asia) by David Sear. It lists 7957 types, but it very far from complete. Now you can sometimes buy both volumes for the cost of one Hoover volume and it may be enough for you.

SNG volumes.  "SNG" stands for "Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum" which is a publication format emphasizing pictures of coins in various major collections, with little or no commentary. Usually each volume is devoted to one region of the Greek world in one collection. Most are "folio" which is very tall (15 inches). 

Unlke Hoover and Sear, SNG volumes include "Greek imperial" (a.k.a. "Roman provincial") coins from the region. The closest thing to a handbook of Greek Imperial coins is Greek Imperial Coins and Their Values, by David Sear. It is arranged by emperor and for each emperor it usually has only one type per city. Nevertheless, it has 636 pages and 6023 types.

SNG Copenhagen = SNG Danish.  Reprinted in 8 volumes covering the entire Greek world with mediocre pictures, this is an often-cited reference because it is very likely to have an example of any given "Greek" coin. It is more recent than BMG Greek and provides rough dates for the coins, but it has none of the discussion of the cities that BMC Greek has.

Catalogue of Greek Coins in the British Museum in 29 volumes. "BMC Greek." This is now so old that it is in the public domain and can be found as pdf files (images of the page and plates, not searchable.) The books take up more than a yard of shelf space. The pictures are mediocre (not up to modern standards) but for decades this was the only nearly-compete reference work, therefore it was cited regularly (and, still is).

SNG von Aulock.  Four volumes covering the coins of Asia Minor in a major collection.

There are many SNG volumes devoted to particular regions, but Copenhagen and von Aulock are more useful than most because they cover more regions. The SNG series any major museum is incomplete. It may cover, say, Sicily, well (as does the ANS SNG), but does not cover the whole ancient world.

[More commentary on books will be added eventually. The main contribution of this site, sale catalogs, is next.]

 


Sale catalogs of Greek coins that empahsize coins from particular regions

Obviously, most catalogs from most firms will have numerous coins from Greek cities, usually with some cities better-represented than others. This list is intended to separate out those catalogs really worth consulting for coins of particular cities or regions with the expectation that the coins are outstanding or the selection is remarkably strong.
    I consider the "Greek" coins that are "Greek Imperial" or "Roman Provincial" to belong in a different category. 


Major divisions:  Magna Graecia (next), Mainland GreeceBlack Sea Region, Asia Minor.

 



Magna Graecia


NAC 13 (10/98)  "Greek Coins of Magna Graecia" VHV. VHQP. "It may be confidently stated that this collection represents the most impressive and complete array of coinage from Magna Graecia and Sicily ever brought to public auction." 575 ancient Greek illustrated throughout + 32 color E.  Spectacular!
    Greek

Sternberg 31  (1996, Oct. 27-28) MV, MQP.  936 Greek of Italy and Sicily on 35 ppl. + 1 E. About half AE and many AR fractions. (e.g. 55 of the Bretti at Bruttium) including 58 didrachms of Taras = Tarentum
    Greek of Italy and Sicily (936), about half Greek AE and many Greek AR fractions, Taras = Tarentum (51)

CNG 81 (2009, May 20) in two volumes. 81/1 has 1332 ancients among 1473. 81/2 is Part II of "The BCD Collection of Coins of the Peloponnesos" with 921 lots including 167 RP.  81/1 has 100 Tarentum from the "Colin E. Pitchfork collection of Tarentine Coinage" 58 of Lysimachos, 75 Alexander the Great, 80 Thessaly, 133 RP, 81 RR, 180 RI, 61 Byz including AE, 3 DA, 6 Crusaders, 22 Turkoman AE, 4 Arabic, 76 British ("The Dr. William F. Blank Collection of British Celtic Coinage")
    BCD Peloponnesis (921), Tarentum (100), Lysimachos (58), Alexander the Great (75), Thessaly (80), British Celtic (76)

CNG 82 (2009, Sept. 16) 1219 ancients among 1402. 134 "Dr. William F. Blank Collection of Celtic Coinage," 102 "Colin E. Pitchfork Collection of the Coinage of Metapontum," 45 tetradrachms of Lysimachos, 48 Macedonian regal coinage, 30 oriental Greek, 30 central Asian, 433 other Greek, 73 RP, 66 RR,  118 RI,  63 "Migration era coinage from the Giambia collection," 10 Byz, 19 Merovingian, 30 coins of the first and second Bulgarian empires.  Some BCD coins of Sikyon, Argos, etc. with a few major pieces sold a second time, 11 British
    Celtic (134), Metapontum (102), Lysimachos (45), Dark ages (63), Bulgarian (30)

NAC 7  (3/94)  HV. VHQP.  891 ancients on 78 ppl + 3 E + 8 ppl in color.  143 Etruscan, 107 G, 207 Italian aes grave, 84 RR struck AE, 374 R.
    Etruscan (143), Italian aes grave (207)

 

 

 



Mainland Greece

     The BCD catalogs are all wonderful, thorough, and amazing scholarly resources for coins of regions of mainland Greece. They are listed below, and a page duplicating this information but solely on the "BCD" catalogs is here.

Akarnanien and Aetolien
M&M GMBH (Weil am Rhein) 23  (2007, Oct. 18) "Sammlung BCD, Akarnanien and Aetolien" 591 lots, most AE, of an extremely important collection which includes many low-grade and AE rarities of scholarly importance in addition to the finest AR. This is as near to complete as a modern collection could be. A major reference for the regions.
    Greek Akarania (Acarania) and Aetolia (591)  
[General collectors of Greek AR and Greek AE may not need such a detailed reference, but it is essential for AR and AE of the region]

Athens
CNG 86 is Triton XIV (2011, Jan. 4-5) 1112 ancients among 1673. 440 G including 118 New Style tetradrachms of Athens and 19 small early electrum of Ionia, 5Asia, 5 India, 105 Sasanian (William Warden collection), 8 large lots RP, 44 RR, 276 RI including some RP, 303 Byz (some AE and 95 gold fractions), 2 DA, 1 Aksum, 12 British
     118 New Style tetradrachms of Athens and 19 small early electrum of Ionia, Sasanian (105), Byz gold fractions (95)

Stack's 2008, Jan. 14. "The Lawrence R. Stack Collection of Ancient Greek Coins" 271 very high value ancient Greek coins in a very high quality presentation catalog. Gorgeous!  Qite a bit of Greek gold, signed Katana tetradrachm, demareteion, etc. All Greek. Everthing in color and also enlarged in color.
    early Athens owls (22)

Boiotia = Boeotia, including Thebes
CNG
71 was Triton IX (CNG alone) (2006, Jan. 10) in two volumes. Volume 1 is the BCD collection of coins of Greek Boiotia (Boeotia), which includes Thebes. This is now the definitive catalog for this region of Greece, superceding the BMC catalog. With outstanding commentary, it is far more than just a sale catalog.  MV. MQP. 630 lots in B&W (not color), with some enlargements.
    Boiotia, Boeotia (630)
   Volume 2 of Triton IX (2006, Jan, 10-11) is HV, HQP, with 1043 ancients among 1694, all in color, many with one-sided enlargements. 20 Celtic, 14 ancient Britain, 220 G, 50 Alexander II, 54 early G electrum and gold, 57 Seleukid, 8 Jewish, 4 Arabia, 15 Ptolemies, 21 Parthia, 27 Baktria, 72 India, 31 Sasanian, 12 Huns, 114 RR, 249 RI, 2 DA, 57 Byz.


CNG 72 (2006, June 14)  MV. HQP. 2308 ancients, all in color with some enlargments, plus 190 lots of antiquities. 55 Celtic, 946 Greek (including BCD Boiotia, Part II, of 139 lots), 126 Oriental G, 146 RP, 78 RR, 609 RI, 252 Byz, 17 Ostrogoths, 24 Visigoths, 24 DA, 4 Aksum, 6 Islamic, 3 Crusaders, 17 Armenian, 47 English sceattas, 8 English. Auction 72 had a second volume, 55 pages of literature only.
    BCD Boiotia, Part II (139)

CNG 73  (2006, Sept. 13) 1130 ancients among 1311, all in color with some enlargements, plus 460 book lots. facing heads collection of David Herman, 541 G (including "Boeotia [sic], Further Selections from the BCD Collection," 58 pieces), 45 Oriental Greek, 98 ships on coins (G, R, RP, Alexandre Barros collection), 79 RP, 53 RR, 214 RI, 40 Byz, 5 Aksum, 2 Crusader, 41 high grade Turkoman bronze, 9 English
    facing heads (many), ships on coins (98), Turkoman bronze (41),
"Boeotia [sic], Further Selections from the BCD Collection," (58)


CNG 74 is Triton X (CNG alone) (2007, Jan. 9-10)  HV. VHQP. 911 ancients among 1480.  All in color, many with at least one side enlarged. 8 Celtic, 454 G (including many Greek facing busts from the David Hermann collection, and "Further Selections from BCD Boiotia" 43 excellent pieces ), 33 India, 10 Sasanian, 49 RR, 272 RI, 43 Byz, 25 DA, 4 Aksum AV, 4Arab-Sasanian, 7 Anglo-Saxon
   
Greek facing heads from the David Hermann collection (many), "Further Selections from BCD Boiotia" (43)

CNG 75  (2007, May 23)  HV. HQP.  1342 ancients among 1533, plus books. All in color, many with at least one side enlarged in color. 5 Celtic, 672 Greek (including 108 Boeotia, BCD collection pieces), 43 India, 24 Sasanian, 26 Huns, * Central Asia, 109 RP, 76 RR, 193 RI (including 14 cistophori of Hadrian), 25 Byz, 6 DA, 4 Aksum AV, 7 Islamic, 3 Mongols, 140 Anglo-Saxon (The "Beowulf Collection:, all with at least one side enlarged)
    Anglo-Saxon, the "Beowulf Collection" 140, Huns (26),
Boeotia (more from the) BCD collection (108)

Corinth
Lanz 105  (26 Nov. 2001) "BCD Corinth" 981 ancient coins of Corinth. An important collection and catalog. MV. MQP.
    Greek Corinth  (981)

Euboia
Lanz 111 (25 Nov. 2002) "BCD Euboia" MV. MQP. 604 Greek coins of Euboia. THE catalog for Euboia.
    Greek Euboia (604)

Lokris-Phokis
NAC 55 (2010, Oct. 8) "The BCD Collection, Lokris - Phokis" Hardcover. Superb reference work, written by BCD himself, with very extensive commentary and extremely thorough coverage of this narrow area of Greek coinage. The definitive work. 475 lots, many with multiple coins. Many lots have the finest known of the silver type, or are some copper rarity, or have something else special to recommend them. BCD was as complete with respect to copper as he was with respect to silver. Magnificent, not for end-to-end highly valuable coins (although some are), but for its value as a scholarly reference work.
    Greek Lokris and Phokis (475)


Olympia/Elis
Leu 90  (May 10, 2004) HV, HQP "BCD Olympia Collection" 345 lots of one city, Olympia also known as Elis.
    Olympia Elis (345)
Leu 96  (2006, May 8-9) MV. HQP. "Coins of Peloponnesos, The BCD Collection." Hardcover. 423 pages. 1775 lots of ancients from the Greek Peloponnesos. B&W photos. Only a few enlargements. This is the definitive catalog which supercedes BMC by far. It is far more than a sale catalog -- it is the most thorough and up-to-date catalog with extensive commentary from two great scholars (BCD and ASW). It does not include coins of Corinth (the BCD collection was sold in Lanz 105 which is an essential reference for Corinth) and the selection from Olympia/Elis is very good, but not complete because most BCD pieces were sold in Leu 90 (listed above).  A separate index is available, here.
    Greek Peloponnesos (1775)  


Peloponnesos
Leu 96  (2006, May 8-9) MV. HQP. "Coins of Peloponnesos, The BCD Collection." Hardcover. 423 pages. 1775 lots of ancients from the Greek Peloponnesos. B&W photos. Only a few enlargements. This is the definitive catalog which supercedes BMC by far. It is far more than a sale catalog -- it is the most thorough and up-to-date catalog with extensive commentary from two great scholars (BCD and ASW). It does not include coins of Corinth (the BCD collection was sold in Lanz 105 which is an essential reference for Corinth) and the selection from Olympia/Elis is very good, but not complete because most BCD pieces were sold in Leu 90 (listed above).  A separate index is available, here.
    Greek Peloponnesos (1775)  

CNG 81 (2009, May 20) in two volumes. 81/1 has 1332 ancients among 1473. 81/2 is Part II of "The BCD Collection of Coins of the Peloponnesos" with 921 lots including 167 RP.  81/1 has 100 Tarentum from the "Colin E. Pitchfork collection of Tarentine Coinage" 58 of Lysimachos, 75 Alexander the Great, 80 Thessaly, 133 RP, 81 RR, 180 RI, 61 Byz including AE, 3 DA, 6 Crusaders, 22 Turkoman AE, 4 Arabic, 76 British ("The Dr. William F. Blank Collection of British Celtic Coinage")
    BCD Peloponnesis (921), Tarentum (100), Lysimachos (58), Alexander the Great (75), Thessaly (80), British Celtic (76)

Thessaly
Nomos 4  (2011, May 10)  VHV. VHQP.  Hardcover. "Coins of Thessaly, the BCD Collection"  437 of the highest quality and rarest coins of Thessaly. This catalog is a treat to read with cataloging by Walker often followed by comment by BCD, who know these coins as well as anybody. A major reference.
     Greek Thessaly (437)

CNG 89 is Triton XV (2012, Jan 3-4) in three volumes.  Session 1 is hardcover, "BCD Thessaly" with 1000 lots, all from this one region of Greece. It is BCD 8 and completes BCD's Thessaly collection from which many top coins were offered in Nomos 4. With superb scholarly and informative cataloging, these will be the reference works for Greek coins of Thessaly for years to come, superseding any other reference work. Session 2 is in a slim volume "Masterpieces of Ancient Greek Coinage: Selections from Cabinet W" which has only 19 lots but all of the very highest quality and presented beautifully. This volume has coins of the highest average value of any catalog ever.  Sessions 3-4 look more like a typical Triton catalog, with 636 lots of high-value ancient coins plus 76 English hammered coins ("The Marshall Faintish Collection") among 941 lots.  374 G, 66 high-quality RP, 44 RR, 85 RI, 1 spectacular contorniate, 5 DA, 84 Byz, 9 early Islamic, 20 pre-1500 dated medieval coins.
    Thessaly (1000), English hammered (76)

 



Black Sea Region

First Auctions JMPG, Geneva
1 (2012, Dec. 1) "the Istros Collection" MV. HQP with most coins in color both natural size and enlarged. in155 Celtic, 42 Dacian (Celtic) imitations of Roman Republican coins, 20 Celtic ring money and pre-monetary types, 30 pre-monetary arrowheads, 567 Istros (including 137+ 73  silver, 143 + 12 city AE, 195 + 7 RP) 7 G, 26 Kallatis (inclusing 8 dolphins), 106 G, 19 RR, 121 RI
    Istros (567, including 137+ 73  silver, 143 + 12 city AE, 195 + 7 RP)

Black Sea Region Books:  
MacDonald, David. An Introduction to the History and Coinage of the Kingdom of the BosporusClassical Numismatic Studies No. 5. viii and 144 pp.; illustrated throughout. HC. Classical Numismatic Group, Inc. 2005. [The most-cited reference work on these coins.]

Anokhin, V.A.  The Coinage of Chersonesus (Money of Cherson) (in Russian) 1977. HC.  [Also, there is an English translation by H. Bartlett Wells, BAR 69, 1980.]
Anokhin, V.A.  The Coinage of Olbia (Russian, title uncertain) 1989. HC.
Anokhin, V.A.  The Coinage of the Bosporus. (in Russian)  1986. HC. 

There are two very good SNGs:

Volume XI: Stancomb: The William Stancomb Collection of Coins of the Black Sea Region. 2000   [A collection of 1092 coins illustarted, with good indicies, but no commentary]
Volume IX, 1: The British Museum, 1: The Black Sea 1993. HC.  [1642 coins in the BM illustrated, with good indicies, but no commentary]

Do not buy the this SNG unless you are very advanced in this area: Ancient Coins from the Black Sea Littoral, by Sergei Kovalenko. SNG State Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts Coins of the Black Sea Region, Part I. 2011. HC. 1870 coins illustrated, mostly in bad condition and with many duplicates.  [Titled an SNG and formatted like an SNG, but not really in the formal series.]

 



Asia Minor


M&M 72  (10/87)  VHV. HQP. 781 ancients on 47 ppl + 3 E.  460 Archaic Greek, 258 G, 46 R, 14 Byz.
    archaic Greek (460, the Jonathen Rosen collection)

Peus 372  (2002, Oct. 30)  1425 ancients and Arabic (only). Ancients on 54 ppl among 70 ppl. 469 G including many AR fractions, a collection of 121 electrum of Asia Minor, 41 Seleucid, 7 Persis, 118 Parthian (including many tetradrachms), 30 Sas, 23 Bactrian.
    electrum of Asia Minor (121), Parthian (many tetradrachms) (118), Greek AR fractions (many)

Kyzicos = Cyzicus
Markov 9  (12/00)  232 ancients among 452, plus 3 color E among 4. 16 electrum staters of Kyzikos (all also enlarged), 49 G, 25 Parthian, 26 RP, 7 RR, 57 RI, 11 Byz, 39 Arabic
    electrum of Kyzikos (16)

Lycia
Peus 360  (1999, April 27-30.  Two volumes. 821 ancients on 34 ppl and 10 ppl Arabic among about 6000 on 326 pages of text and 291 ppl. 145 Greek coins of Lycia "Sammlung T. Reuter", 80 G, 28 Persis, 5 Elymais, 33 Parthian, 25 Sas, 39 RR, 209 RI, 184 RP, 69 Byz
     Greek coins of Lycia "Sammlung T. Reuter" (145)
Peus 407 (2012, Nov. 7) "Sammlung Fr. Maag" Hardcover. 919 Greek coins, including 33 Celtic, 98 Ionia, 61 Caria, 167 Lycia, 44 Cilicia
    Lycia (167)

Rhodes and Caria


Lanz 131  (2006, 27 Nov.)  "Sammlung Karl. Coins of Caria" MV. HQP.  822 Greek ancients, all in color.  An important specialized collection of coins of Caria including Rhodes.  Including 49 satraps and dynasts, 46 large RP of Stratonikeia.
    Caria = Karia (387), Rhodes (464, including 142 AE)   [A major reference work]

Gorny 169 (2008 Oct. 18) HV. 834 ancients including a collection of 332 from Caria (including Rhodes). 177 G, 15 RP, 44 RR aes grave, 19 RR, 173 RI, 18 Byz, 55 weights (large ones), 332 Caria
    Caria including Rhodes and 27 AE didrachms (332), aes grave (44), weights (55)


Crete
Kunker 136  (2008, 10 March) MV. HQP. 1650 ancients, all in color, some color enlargements.  395 from the Dr. Burkhard collection of Crete,  27 Celtic, 353 G, 102 RR, 465 RI, 6 DA, 225 Byz including some nice AE, 3 Crusaders, 1 Turkoman
    Crete (395)

M&M 66  (10/84)  HV. MQP. 885 ancients on 55 ppl + 3 E,  315 G including an imporant collection of Crete, 570 R.
     Crete (122), Septimius Severus family w. two heads or more (9), Roman Republican (196)

Freeman and Sear 13 (2006, Aug. 25) MV. HQP. 814 ancients among 826. B&W photos throughout, some enlargements, plus 8 ppl of color enlargements. Crete 41, 21 Celtic, 296 G, 24 RP, 62 RR, 250 RI, 118 Byz
    Crete (41)

 

 


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                Revised Dec. 19, 2017