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Owl from Heritage Gemini VIII

WeissWeiss Posts: 9,938 ✭✭✭✭✭
In case you missed it (or in the event it's been posted: in case I missed it image )

Attica. Athens. c. 465-460 BC. Decadrachm, 41.86g. (2h). Obv: Head of Athena right, wearing crested Attic helmet decorated with three olive leaves over spiral palmette and three-piece drop earrings. Rx: A - Θ - Ε Owl standing facing, wings spread; olive sprig at upper left; all within incuse square. Fischer-Bossert, unlisted dies. In itself, this coin is one of the finest of all Greek coins in existence. It is, according to Wolfgang Fischer-Bossert, one of three coins tied for the finest known, with only one of the other two being in private hands and the second in a museum, and it is one of the most significant issues ever struck by the Greeks. The head of Athena is struck in high relief. The smile produces an apple-cheek face, which blends with a slightly elliptical archaic eye. A fair amount of the crest is present and all of the pearls along the neck and under the helmet are complete, as well as full detail on all of the leaves, the helmet and the complete hairline and complete ear. The owl, which normally has large planchet defects in the chest, in this case is completely and fully struck, including the chest, the tail, and even the feet which are absolutely sharp. Only the very top of the A is off the flan and there is a tiny bit of corrosion in the right wing and an even smaller miniscule spot in the lower part of the left wing. Near Mint State.

This coin was graded by NGC with a photo certificate, but not encapsulated. If the buyer requests the coin encapsulated, NGC will oblige. When NGC does register sets of ancient coins, the person owning this coin would no doubt have the number one register set. NGC Cert. #3443360-001. NGC Grade is Choice AU*, Fine Style, Strike 5/5, Surface 4/5.

Lot# 45Estimate: US$875000

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Attica Athens Decadrachm
We are like children who look at print and see a serpent in the last letter but one, and a sword in the last.
--Severian the Lame

Comments

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    STLNATSSTLNATS Posts: 1,599 ✭✭✭
    Glad someone listed it. My catalogue came yesterday and I was stunned when I saw this on the cover. Nice technical write up too. These deks are just amazing pieces and this is a beautiful example. Gotta love that owl on the reverse. Probably my absolute favorite ancient, even more so than the deks of Syracuse.

    Now if I can just sell everything I own by the auction....



    Always interested in St Louis MO & IL metro area and Evansville IN national bank notes and Vatican/papal states coins and medals!
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    JCMhoustonJCMhouston Posts: 5,306 ✭✭✭
    I saw that too, an amazing coin for sure.
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    Do you think this will sell to a private collector or a museum of some sort?

    I'm really just curious as to just how much museums have to invest in numismatic items.
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    HussuloHussulo Posts: 2,953 ✭✭✭
    I think ill just wait until a MS example comes along. image
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    bronzematbronzemat Posts: 2,616 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Simply stunning coin. Always loved the owls. Strangely I dont own a single one, not even a bronze.
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    Steve27Steve27 Posts: 13,274 ✭✭✭
    Wow, what a nice coin, I wonder what its provenance is?
    "It's far easier to fight for principles, than to live up to them." Adlai Stevenson
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    DorkGirlDorkGirl Posts: 9,994 ✭✭✭
    image
    Becky
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    farthingfarthing Posts: 3,294 ✭✭✭
    image
    R.I.P. Wayne, Brad
    Collecting:
    Conder tokens
    19th & 20th Century coins from Great Britain and the Realm
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    ZoharZohar Posts: 6,629 ✭✭✭✭✭
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    Kurt4Kurt4 Posts: 492 ✭✭
    That's just incredible.
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    SYRACUSIANSYRACUSIAN Posts: 6,450 ✭✭✭✭
    This is an incredible coin that would finally become the centerpiece of the Greek Alpha Bank museum collection if its wealthy president and owner of the very few licences to collect Ancient Greek coins, would try a second time to repatriate one, because the State is in absolutely no condition to buy it for its own museums. The first time, the entire Greek bureaucracy went against him, it's crazy but true. They asked him to pay VAT on such an important repatriation and he rightfully declined.

    Kind of makes me nostalgic of the time of the National benefactors of the 19th century, wealthy individuals that would step in when the always poor state couldn't.
    Dimitri



    myEbay



    DPOTD 3
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    determineddetermined Posts: 771 ✭✭✭
    This coin has been withdrawn because of doubts about its authenticity.

    http://www.geminiauction.com/details.asp?LotNumber=45

    In the last few years a few mint examples of the Athenian Decadrachm have come to market. Interestingly, and alarmingly, they have all been mint examples and with no previously known die examples. And all have a lack of provenance. Red flags abound.

    This has been discussed on other forums. And the whistle blowers have been vindicated by the removal of this coin.


    Be careful out there.
    I collect history in the form of coins.
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    STLNATSSTLNATS Posts: 1,599 ✭✭✭
    his coin has been withdrawn because of doubts about its authenticity.

    Wow, what a disappointment (especially for the owner). It had an extensive and interesting writeup so one would have thought it had been thoroughly vetted. I guess putting it on the cover of your auction provided the ultimate test.

    A beautiful thing either way and the reverse is still going to stay as the background on my desktop for a while. And maybe I can afford it now (LOL)


    image
    Always interested in St Louis MO & IL metro area and Evansville IN national bank notes and Vatican/papal states coins and medals!
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    WeissWeiss Posts: 9,938 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Heavy duty stuff. Amazing it made it that far, even more amazing that it didn't make it all the way. Love to see how this one ends...
    We are like children who look at print and see a serpent in the last letter but one, and a sword in the last.
    --Severian the Lame
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    determineddetermined Posts: 771 ✭✭✭
    And it was graded by NGC.

    But NGC doesn't have to worry. They don't guarantee the authenticity of the ancients they grade.


    From: NGC Ancients Guarantee

    "NGC Ancients is committed to grading only genuine coins, but it does not guarantee authenticity, genuineness or attribution, nor is any guarantee of these aspects implied."

    "WARNING: THIS GUARANTEE IS LIMITED TO GRADING ONLY"



    image Any ancient collector with some experience can grade ancients. What's needed in ancients is an authentication service with a guarantee.


    But this has been discussed before.
    I collect history in the form of coins.
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    SwampboySwampboy Posts: 12,901 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I'm shocked to think the cover coin on the auction catalog is 'questionable authenticity'.
    It's troubling.

    The entertainment can never be overdressed....except in burlesque

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    SaorAlbaSaorAlba Posts: 7,496 ✭✭✭✭✭
    It is a recurring and unsettling problem for ancients. I have one myself, from Athens no less, that I suspect could possibly be a forgery. Because of that fact, I have largely shied away from buying anymore ancients. There are just so many variables with them - and some very dangerous forgeries.
    In memory of my kitty Seryozha 14.2.1996 ~ 13.9.2016 and Shadow 3.4.2015 - 16.4.21
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    TwoKopeikiTwoKopeiki Posts: 9,574 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I had a long discussion about this coin at CICF this weekend. Quite a few ancient dealers considered it a clear counterfeit. Talk about the black eye on the entire auction.
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    MrEurekaMrEureka Posts: 24,049 ✭✭✭✭✭
    The owner of the coin is an extremely knowledgeable dealer. It just goes to show you that anyone can screw up. Tough one to eat, though.
    Andy Lustig

    Doggedly collecting coins of the Central American Republic.

    Visit the Society of US Pattern Collectors at USPatterns.com.
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    SaorAlbaSaorAlba Posts: 7,496 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Yeah it makes my $1K purchase of what might be a modern forgery seem pretty trivial. These days I stick to what I know, Scots, Russians and 'Mericans.
    In memory of my kitty Seryozha 14.2.1996 ~ 13.9.2016 and Shadow 3.4.2015 - 16.4.21
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    << <i>Yeah it makes my $1K purchase of what might be a modern forgery seem pretty trivial. These days I stick to what I know, Scots, Russians and 'Mericans. >>



    Even some of those get dicier by the day , it sure put the skids on my hammered collecting when i seen what comes out of China. I'll need to get pics of the Mary ll bawbee for your inspection Saor Alba , i really would appreciate an expert taking a look.Another thread of course , i love that owl in this one and am learning a lot from you guys , thanks image
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    SaorAlbaSaorAlba Posts: 7,496 ✭✭✭✭✭


    << <i>

    Even some of those get dicier by the day , it sure put the skids on my hammered collecting when i seen what comes out of China. I'll need to get pics of the Mary ll bawbee for your inspection Saor Alba , i really would appreciate an expert taking a look.Another thread of course , i love that owl in this one and am learning a lot from you guys , thanks image >>



    With Mary bawbees, I hope to find counterfeits - really - because the French troops in Edinburgh were caught forging the lions and hardheads and probably worked on the bawbees as well. The contemporary forgeries from that era in Scottish history are far far more fascinating than the real coins. There is conjecture that James Hepburn, Lord Bothwell, got in on the act too in 1567 just prior to her flight to England. I have one of the French forged hardheads.
    In memory of my kitty Seryozha 14.2.1996 ~ 13.9.2016 and Shadow 3.4.2015 - 16.4.21
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    I got a very nice new camera from the BST here a few days ago..maybe a week , ive yet to try it out but when i'm done running after the missus's backside the day i'll dig out my Scots stuff and see what they look like with 12 megapixels as opposed to the lowly 5 ive had these past 3 year.
    That's some interesting history there Saor Alba , ive spent many evenings on google books downloading extremely old original books and documents directly concerning various Scottish towns and soforth , currently i'm sourcing all i can about the Bass rock and North Berwick alnong with Haddington and Dunbar.I knew our history was one of bloodshed but what i'm reading is just mindboggling,i had no idea.I thought i did until i got the facts.
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    SaorAlbaSaorAlba Posts: 7,496 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Ancestral research was what got me interested in Scots coinage. Of course it's scarcity vs English is also another factor in it's fascination - but the direct ties to what was going on at the time - for instance Queen Mary's many travails were played out on her coinage - makes for a fascinating study.
    In memory of my kitty Seryozha 14.2.1996 ~ 13.9.2016 and Shadow 3.4.2015 - 16.4.21
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    I'll admit just this once , scarcity is the #1 reason i only collect Scottish Conders and not the English ones that can be had with ease.Ive kept it quiet until i aquired the difficult ones , that would not include the Glasgow and Edinburgh halfpennies , not even the Perth , Dundee or Inverness ones , its the Conder farthings and obscure towns that present the challange.
    Once i get that new camera down pat i'll put some pics up and have a wee Scottish thread image
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    SaorAlbaSaorAlba Posts: 7,496 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I have a few conders, but frankly they were never really a challenge to me - though I admit I really want one of the William Wallace examples in better grade. Communion tokens, have a few representative examples - but nothing really exciting. I have to admit, once you get bitten with the Queen Mary bug it is hard to want to collect anything else, can say almost the same for JVI also given the variety of coinages. Some of my JVI coins are scarcer than hen's teethies - they kept getting called in an' melted or counterstamped. The '76 Dundee Collection catalogue is like my bible - lots and lots of Marian coinages, even a 15557 dated Testoon I would kill for.
    In memory of my kitty Seryozha 14.2.1996 ~ 13.9.2016 and Shadow 3.4.2015 - 16.4.21
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    I kinda know what you mean , once i'd got the Mary 6d i was kinda like...ok..now what. Edward Vlll was much easier than i thought for a representitive coin , east africa helped me there.Im at that crossroads where i either go Scots or dabble deeper in the English Kings than ive done which in itself was way more than i ever intended.Ive only the really tough ones left to get from both camps and when one gets there gold begins to look good at those prices opposed to billion image
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    SaorAlbaSaorAlba Posts: 7,496 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I used to have a fairly decent collection of English hammered, from William I on up. I sold most of it years ago - some regrets because I had nice XF grade type stuff and I sort of miss them - especially at the prices they are now. I have dabbled in some English hammered gold though, particularly so where it was a really nice example and I cannot get one from then contemporary Scotland:

    image

    A coin I looked long and far for before I found a nice full flan, heavily weighed example of.
    In memory of my kitty Seryozha 14.2.1996 ~ 13.9.2016 and Shadow 3.4.2015 - 16.4.21
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