KINGS OF ARMENIA. Tigranes the Younger, 77/6-66 BC. Drachm (Silver, 21 mm, 3.70 g, 1 h), Tigranokerta or Artagigarta, 66/5. Draped bust of Tigranes the Younger to right, wearing five-pointed Armenian tiara decorated with a comet and tied with a diadem. Rev. BAΣIΛEΩΣ - TIΓPANOY The Tyche of Artagigarta (?) seated to right on rock, holding long palm frond in her right hand; below, river-god Tigris swimming right. AC 39 corr. ('Tigranes II'). Kovacs 154 (same dies). Extremely rare. Nicely toned and struck on an unusually broad flan. Somewhat rough and with a flan crack, otherwise, nearly very fine.
From an important collection of Armenian coins, ex Leu 2, 11 May 2018, 140.
Kovacs has recently shown that the coins naming a 'King Tigranes' and showing a young bust wearing a tiara decorated with a comet are, in fact, not of Tigranes II 'the Great' but of his son Tigranes the Younger. The prince proved to be an able general and was appointed as co-ruler alongside his father in 77/6 BC, but with the plain title 'King', as opposed to his father's title 'King of Kings', indicating that he only had a subordinate role. This might help to explain why Tigranes the Younger, with the help of the Parthian King Phraates III (70-57 BC), later tried to overthrow his father, who eventually surrendered to Pompey in 66 BC. The Roman general treated the old king more kindly than his young son, giving the latter only the Kingdom of Sophene before dethroning him again after a few months when he failed to pay the full indemnity required by the Romans. It is in fact quite likely that our coin was struck as part of Tigranes the Younger's war reparations to Pompey, which would point to his new capital Artagigarta as the mint rather than to Tigranokerta.