SICILY. Kamarina. Circa 425-405 BC. Tetradrachm (Silver, 27 mm, 17.00 g, 5 h). И-O-I-AИIꟼAMAꓘ Athena driving quadriga galloping to left, holding kentron in her right hand and reins in her left; above, Nike flying right, crowning Athena with a wreath. Rev. KAMAPI-NAION Bearded head of Herakles to left, wearing lion skin headdress. BMC 11 (same dies). Jameson 522 (this coin). Rizzo pl. V, 6 (this coin). SNG Ashmolean 1697 (same dies). Westermark & Jenkins 132.8 (this coin, 01/R2). Nicely toned and with an excellent pedigree. The usual large die break on the reverse, otherwise, very fine.
From the collection of Regierungsrat Dr. iur. Hans Krähenbühl, privately acquired from Bank Leu on 8 March 1974 (with a photocopy of the original invoice enclosed) and from the collections of C. Gillet ('Kunstfreund'), photofile no. 365, R. Jameson (1861-1942) and Edward P. Warren ('Well-known Amateur'), Sotheby's, 2 May 1905, 55.
Kamarina was a rather small city on the southern coast of Sicily that was founded by Syracuse in 599 BC. Destroyed by its mother city in 552 BC, it took almost a century before it was refounded in 461 by settlers from nearby Gela. Kamarina's late 5th century coinage is, as we can see on this lovely example, among the most artistic from Sicily, indicating that the polis must have been prosperous enough to hire the best artists of the time. Unfortunately, the city was once more destroyed in 405 BC, this time by the Carthaginians. It was resettled from Syracuse some years later, but never fully recovered from the second disaster, much like Akragas, and only struck some bronze and silver coins of mediocre style and fabric in the 4th century BC.