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Details about  ALEXANDER III, the GREAT, Bronze,Thrace, Koinon, 232AD. Two four-column temples

ALEXANDER III, the GREAT, Bronze,Thrace, Koinon, 232AD. Two four-column temples

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MITHRA Ancient Coins

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Last updated on  Jan 18, 2013 08:08:21 PST  View all revisions

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[ 3498]

Alexander III, the Great: Macedonian Greek King: 336-323 B.C.
Roman Era, Olympic-Style Games Issue
Bronze( 27mm, 10.33 grm.) from the Koinon of Macedonia in Thrace under Roman Control
 Struck circa 222-235 A.D. under the reign of Roman Emperor Severus Alexander
AΛЄΞANΔPOV, Draped bust of  Alexander the Great right with loose, flowing hair.
KOINON MAKЄΔONΩN, Two four-column temples in 3 dimensional perspective with B above in at center.

* Numismatic Note: Leaders like Julius Caesar and the Romans and the Greeks alike had immense respect for the great accomplishments of Alexander the Great. Macedonia, being the kingdom of Alexander the Great's birth, this coin featuring his likeness heralds the Neocorate status of the area, along with the Olympic-style games that accompanied it. Highly-coveted type.


Provided with certificate of authenticity.

CERTIFIED AUTHENTIC
by Sergey Nechayev, PhD -
Numismatic Expert

The provincial coinage issued in the name of a district council (KOINON) was not very common at the time of Augustus and the formation of provincial Roman governments. Most cities issued coinage in their own names - either as autonomous or as individual subjects of the emperor or a client king. In fact, the koina never became very widespread in practice or authority. From inscriptions on provincial coins, we know of koina in Macedon and Thessaly in Greece - also on the islands of Lesbos, Crete and Cyprus. The remainder were from the East.

In theory, the koinon may be likened to a federation where representatives of each city in the district form an assembly with a democratic voice. In practice, however, they had very limited powers. One of their main functions was the organization of festivals and games in favor of the imperial cult. The allusion to these games is normally seen in the legends or iconography of the coins which they issued. Other typical images are the temple of the koinon or personifications of the Senate

The koina should not be thought of as independent political powers. They were, of course, under Roman control. In fact, the Roman proconsul or provincial governor is sometimes named on these coins.

Neocorus was a Greek title which designated the in­dividual who had charge of the interior of a temple and looked out for the temple's needs. In Roman times, provincial Greek cities often styled themselves as the neocori of the imperial cult. This was an obvious form of flattery, which insinuated the godliness of the emperor and indicated the city's devotion and loyalty. The neocorate of a city was a great and coveted honor, and not one which was presumed arbitrarily. The emperor allowed the bestowing of this right only to cities which had earned the status. Consequently, cities were eager to announce this consideration and usually did so on their coinage. The proclamation of a neocorate on coins was often accompanied by a depiction of the temple.

Originally, it was imperial policy that only one neocorate would be allowed in a city. This rule was later relaxed, and several cities were allowed two or more neocorates. The subsequent awards were depicted on coins by showing two or three temples along with an appropriate inscription. The first neocorate of a city was usually mentioned in the inscription simply as NEΩKOPΩN. The second appeared as B NEΩKOPΩN, the third as F NEΩKOPΩN (e.g. Pergamum).

The approval of neocorate was usually accompanied by games and festivals. The coins struck for these events often displayed a combination of neocorate and agonistic imagery. Like the number of temples depicted, there also seems to be a correlation between the imagery and the award on some of the "games" issues. Although this may be coincidental, coins bearing the single NEOKOPOC often have a singular agonistic crown or urn, which is in the center field between the temples. Those indicating a second or subsequent neocorate have two or more crowns.

The iconography of neocorate and agonistic references is very complex and not fully understood by most numismatists. It is, however, a wonderful area for study, research and discovery. You may learn more about the interrelationships between these aspects of religion, civic administration and public events, and then we will undoubtedly be able to unravel some of the underlying symbology.

Alexander III of Macedon, popularly known to history as Alexander the Great, ("Mégas Aléxandros") was an Ancient Greek king (basileus) of Macedon. Born in 356 BC, Alexander succeeded his father Philip II of Macedon to the throne in 336 BC, and died in Bablyon in 323 BC at the age of 32.

Alexander was one of the most successful military commanders of all time and it is presumed that he was undefeated in battle. By the time of his death, he had conquered the Achaemenid Persian Empire, adding it to Macedon's European territories; according to some modern writers, this was much of the world then known to the ancient Greeks (the 'Ecumene'). His father, Philip, had unified most of the city-states of mainland Greece under Macedonian hegemony in the League of Corinth. As well as inheriting hegemony over the Greeks, Alexander also inherited the Greeks' long-running feud with the Achaemenid Empire of Persia. After reconfirming Macedonian rule by quashing a rebellion of southern Greek city-states, Alexander launched a short but successful campaign against Macedon's northern neighbours. He was then able to turn his attention towards the east and the Persians. In a series of campaigns lasting 10 years, Alexander's armies repeatedly defeated the Persians in battle, in the process conquering the entirety of the Empire. He then, following his desire to reach the 'ends of the world and the Great Outer Sea', invaded India, but was eventually forced to turn back by the near-mutiny of his troops.

Alexander died after twelve years of constant military campaigning, possibly a result of malaria, poisoning, typhoid fever, viral encephalitis or the consequences of alcoholism. His legacy and conquests lived on long after him and ushered in centuries of Greek settlement and cultural influence over distant areas. This period is known as the Hellenistic period, which featured a combination of Greek, Middle Eastern and Indian culture. Alexander himself featured prominently in the history and myth of both Greek and non-Greek cultures. His exploits inspired a literary tradition in which he appeared as a legendary hero in the tradition of Achilles.

Alexander fighting Persian king Darius III. From Alexander Mosaic, from Pompeii, Naples, Naples National

 

 

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