06-11-2013 – 01-01-1970
Ancient British, Islamic and World Coins, Historical Medals and Plaquettes
Kimon decadrachm leads Morton & Eden sale
Morton & Eden’s sale on November 7, 2013 was a general sale which included a number of very good ancient Greek coins, a fine collection of English silver crowns and Renaissance plaquettes which achieved the top prices. The auction totalled £525,900 ($846,120). 90 percent of all items were sold by value. All prices mentioned in the text include the Buyer’s Premium of 20%.
Specialist Tom Eden said: This was a general sale which included a number of very good ancient Greek coins, a fine collection of English silver crowns and Renaissance plaquettes which achieved the top prices. There was considerable interest shown with buyers either in the room, on the telephone or bidding online from all parts of the globe, confirming the continuing strength of the coin market. As predicted, the most expensive piece was a rare Syracusan decadrachm by Kimon of around 405 BC depicting the local water-nymph Arethusa, struck to celebrate victory over the Carthaginians in that year. The auction was, however, very wide-ranging and we were well pleased with the overall results.
Sicily, Syracuse, dekadrachm, by Kimon, c. 405-400 BC, fast quadriga driven left by charioteer who holds goad over horses in extended right hand and reins in left; above, Nike flies right holding wreath to crown charioteer; on upper side of exergual line, signature, [KIMON] in small letters; below, in exergual area, on two steps, panoply of arms, rev., head of Arethusa left, her hair in ampyx and held in a net, wearing single tear-drop earring and pearl necklace, K on ampyx; four dolphins around head with that below bearing artist’s full signature, KIMON, 43.36g, die axis 11 o’clock (Jongkees 3p, this piece; Rizzo pl. 52, 3; SNG Lockett 998, all from the same dies), usual capillary die flaw on reverse, minor marks, good very fine to about extremely fine and rare.
Formerly in the collection of the Bibliothéque Nationale, Paris. Estimate: £30,000-50,000. Sold for £57,600 ($92,678). Purchased by UK private collector.
Arkadia, Pheneos, drachm, c. 360-350 BC, head of Demeter left, wearing wreath, triple pendant earring and pearl necklace, rev., Hermes, nude but for cloak, seated left on rocks, holding kerykeion, 5.58g (Traité III 901, pl. 225, 9, this coin, BCD 1616; BMC 14; Jameson 1255; SNG Lockett 2526=Weber 4323, all from the same dies), slightly porous, very fine, obverse better and extremely rare.
Ex Garret collection, part II, NFA and Leu, October 1984, lot 230; Ex Pozzi collection, Naville I, April 1921, lot 1951. The rocks on which Hermes is seated have been associated with mount Kyllene in the Peloponnese, the location of a sacred cave where Hermes was born. The drachms of Pheneos are known to be rarer than the staters and all known examples are struck from a single pair of dies.
Estimate: £4,000-6,000. Sold for £32,400 ($52,132). Purchased by UK private collector.
Italy, Moderno, The Flagellation, bronze-gilt plaquette, in the centre, Christ tied to a pillar flanked by his tormentors and with soldiers, a horseman and other men beneath two double-vaulted archways in the background, 140.7 x 105.3m (Molinier 170; Lewis 42; Scaglia V37, variant B; Wixom 33), the archways finely chased, minor casting holes in lower right field, a very fine old cast.
Ex Adda collection, Maître Maurice Rheims, Paris, 30 November 1965, lot 287.
Estimate: £1,000-1,500. Sold for £16,800 ($27,031). Purchased by US private collector.
Kings of Macedon, Alexander III (336-323), gold distater, Amphipolis, c. 330-320 BC, head of Athena right wearing necklace and crested Corinthian helmet decorated with serpent, rev., Nike standing left, holding wreath and stylis; thunderbolt in field, 17.24g (Price 163; Troxell 535, all from the same dies), some light scratches in fields and on face of Athena, minor scrape on helmet otherwise extremely fine and rare.
Estimate: £8,000-12,000. Sold for £16,800 ($27,031). Purchased by private collector.
Arcadia, Pheneos, half-stater, c. 480-470 BC, head of Hermes with a pointed beard left, wearing petasos, rev., ram’s head right, within incuse square, 16.8mm, 7.02g (BCD 1596, this coin), very fine, unique.
Ex BCD collection, LHS 96, May 2006, lot 1596.
Estimate: £10,000-12,000. Sold for £15,600 ($25,100). Purchased by US dealer.
Britain, Elizabeth I, Sixth Issue, crown, mint mark 2 (1602), 29.86g (N. 2012; S. 2582A), minor marks, very fine and with a clear portrait, rare.
Estimate: £7,000-10,000. Sold for £14,400 ($23,170). Purchased by UK dealer.
Italy, Moderno, The Crucifixion, bronze-gilt plaquette, Christ crucified between the two thieves; below are soldiers and on the left is St. John gazing up at the cross; below him, the fainting Virgin supported by two women; Mary Magdalen clasps the shaft of the cross, 113.2 x 78.5mm (Molinier 171; Lewis 2; Scaglia V12; Bargello 144; Wixom 42-43; Kress 147), thin gilding, a very fine early cast with some tooling of the fields at the top.
Estimate: £2,000-3,000. Sold for £6,240 ($10,040). Purchased by UK private collector.
Britain, Charles II, crown, 1662, first bust, rose below, lettered edge undated, 180° die axis
(E.S.C. 15; S. 3350), good very fine to extremely fine, sharply struck and attractive.
Estimate: £3,000-4,000. Sold for £6,000 ($9,654). Purchased by UK private collector.
Britain, Oliver Cromwell, crown, 1658/7, by Thomas Simon, edge lettered, obverse die flaw in a late stage (ESC 10; S. 3226), very fine and well toned.
Estimate: £2,800-3,200. Sold for £5,400 ($8,694). Purchased by UK private collector.
Germany, Münster, Franz Arnold von Wolff Metternich (1706-18), taler, 1715, bust right, rev., arms (Dav. 2467), minor flan faults, better than very fine and very rare.
Estimate: £1,000-1,500. Sold for £5,040 ($8,109). Purchased by UK dealer.
You can download the catalogue from the Morton & Eden website.
A list of all prices realised is available here.