MAIASP. 2020. No. 12

M.M. Choref (Nizhny Novgorod, Russia)

Coins of Panticapaeum and Phanagoria of the 3rd quarter of the 1st century BCE as a source of historical information

DOI: 10.53737/2713-2021.2021.12.12.004

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Pages: 710—733

The article focuses on the obols, tetrachalkoi and dichalkoi of the Panticapaeum and Phanagoria mints with busts of Apollo in a laurel wreath, bearded Hercules as well as Nike with six-pointed star with long rays on the obverse and with images of an arrow, lyre and palm branch, grazing Pegasus, bow with gorytos or laurel branch, intertwined with ribbon, club and lion’s skin, as well as ship’s prora on the reverse. Their generally accepted classification has not yet been developed, and their potential as a source of historical information has not been revealed. We solve this problem based on the results of iconographic analysis. In the first series, we single out obols with an arrow, lyre and palm branch and tetrachalkoi with a grazing Pegasus on the reverse, embossed on Asander’s coins. Judging by the Mithridatidic symbolism, they were minted in the time of Scribonius. After his overthrow in Panticapaeum, tetrachalkoi with gorytos and a bow and dichalkoi with club and lion’s skin on the reverse were issued. We attribute these coins to the second series of Panticapaeum. In Phanagoria during the period of the uprising, tetrachalkoi with a palm branch were minted. We select them in the second series of Phanagoria. And after the victory of the insurgents, they fired tetrachalkoi with a bow and arrow on the reverse. We attribute them to the third series of Phanagoria. Judging by the variety of coin symbols, after the death of Scribonius, the Bosporus state collapsed. At the beginning of the reign of Polemon I, in Panticapaeum and in Phanagoria, the same type of tetrachalke with a bust of Apollo on the obverse and with ship’s prora on the reverse were minted, which testifies to the restoration of the unity of the state. We attribute these coins to the third series of Panticapaeum and the fourth series of Phanagoria. As we can see, the coins that attracted our attention perfectly illustrated the events that took place in the Bosporus in the last third of the 1st century BCE.

Key words: history, numismatics, Bosporus, polis coinage, iconographic analysis.

Received December 12, 2020

Accepted for publication December 30, 2020

About the author:

Choref Mikhail Mikhailovich (Nizhny Novgorod, Russia). PhD (History), Lobachevsky State University of Nizhny Novgorod