PTOLEMY I Soter.Delta Master Δ Signed Rare Ancient Greek Silver Tetradrachm Coin

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Seller: Top-Rated Seller zeus_gallery (3,786) 100%, Location: Beverly Hills, California, Ships to: Worldwide, Item: 303501374037 Right Click picture and select "View image" to see large hi-resolution. image. Ptolemy I Silver Tetrarachm Coin Artist Signed Obverse The Delta Master Ancient Greek Coinage PTOLEMAIC EGYPT PTOLEMY I Soter (Savior) 305-282 BC. Lifetime issue of Ptolemy I 25mm 13.71g Silver Tetradrachm. Alexandria mint, struck 300-285 BC. RARE "DELTA MASTER" Signed obverse die. H.A. Hazard, writing in "Ptolemaic Coins" (1985), noted the appearance of a tiny letter Δ on certain finely-engraved tetradrachm dies issued from the Satrapal period of Ptolemy I (323-305 BC) to the early reign of his son and successor, Ptolemy II (281-246 BC). He believed this to be the signature of a particular engraver of exceptional talent, whose body of work set him apart from other numismatic artists of Egypt and elsewhere. According to Hazard, "no subsequent craftsman at the Alexandrine mint ever showed the same mastery of design and detail as Delta, and, in the opinion of this writer, he was the greatest engraver of the Hellenistic Age. So proud was he of his productions that he signed his initial Δ ... in the small space behind King Ptolemy's ear. Pyrrhus of Epirus and Seleucus of Syria, both residents of Ptolemy's court, later used Delta's designs for their own coinages; other Greek craftsmen also admired Delta and copied his designs at Ecbatana, Syracuse, Antioch, and other mints over the next five hundred years." Obverse: Diademed head of Ptolemy I right, wearing aegis around neck, signed by die engraver with small Δ behind ear by the "Delta Master". Reverse: BAΣIΛEΩΣ ΠTOΛEMAIOY, eagle standing left on thunderbolt; to left, P above ΠAP monogram. On this coin we encounter the first true portrait of one of Alexander’s successors. Ptolemy was the first of Alexander's successors kings (Diadochi) to place his portrait on his coinage. About 295 he reformed his coinage reducing the weight of the tetradrachm for the second time. Introducing new denominations on all his precious metal currency. The standard obverse type was now his diademed portrait with the aegis around his neck. The aegis was an attribute of Zeus and of Athena, and had been worn by the deified Alexander on his previous coinage. It was a symbol of the protection of Zeus, Athena, and Alexander. It was also his personal emblem, an eagle standing on a thunderbolt. Ptolemy I "Soter"(366 BC – 282 BC) served not only as king of Egypt but also the founder of the Ptolemaic dynasty, a dynasty which included the infamous Cleopatra VII. Ptolemy had grown up with Alexander at Pella, his mother was said to have been related to the royal family. Ptolemy was a Macedonian nobleman, son of Lagos. Rumors circulated,however, that he was actually the illegitimate son of Alexander’s father Phillip II, a possibility that would have made him Alexander’s half-brother. Although older than Alexander and many of the other generals who followed Alexander into Persia, he still became a close friend, advisor and later one of his seven personal bodyguards "somatophylax". PtolemyI joined Alexander on expeditions including India and Egypt. He was in fact the only one of the first round of the Hellenistic kings to die peacefully--in his bed, and that in his eighty-fifth year and after securing a peaceful succession to his throne. Attractive portrait~finest Hellenistic style by a master engraver. Nearly Very Fine obverse / Choice Fine. sgraffiti, ancient banker's marks. Ref. Svoronos 255. SNG Copenhagen 70 - 71. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ OUR GUARANTEE: All illustrations are of the actual item offered. The authenticity of all pieces is fully guaranteed. Any item ever shown otherwise may be returned unaltered for full refund less shipping. If any item purchased is not to your satisfaction you may return it unaltered within 30 days of purchase for a full refund less shipping. We also guarantee absolute discretion and confidentiality in all transactions. Images are not actual size Please see description for actual measurements. Material: Silver, Type: Ancient, Ancient Type: Greek, Coin Type: Ancient, Country/Region of Manufacture: Egypt, Date: 300 BC, Grade: Very FIne, Composition: Silver, Denomination: Tetradrachm, Culture: Greek

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