From the V. J. E. Ryan, British Museum and C. Butler collections, pedigreed to 1911
Lot 18
BRUTTIUM. Rhegion. Circa 415/0-387 BC. Tetradrachm (Silver, 23 mm, 16.75 g, 12 h). Facing head of a lion. Rev. ΡHΓINON Head of Apollo to right, wearing laurel wreath; behind, olive sprig. Herzfelder 91b and pl. X, 91 (this coin, D54/R78). HN Italy 2496. SNG Copenhagen 1933 (same reverse die). SNG Lockett 658 (same reverse die). Weber 1119 (same reverse die). Beautifully toned and with an exceptional pedigree. Minor porosity, otherwise, good very fine.

Ex Hess-Leu 45, 12-13 May 1970, 33 and Hess-Leu 3, 27 March 1956, 54, from the V. J. E. Ryan Collection, Part IV, Glendining, 20 February 1951, 1481 and ex Ratto, 4 April 1927, 319, from the Duplicates of the British Museum, Naville V, 18 June 1923, 757, and from the collection of Charles Butler, Sotheby, Wilkinson & Hodge, 3 July 1911, 61.

Hemmed in between the Brettian mountains and the Strait of Messina, Rhegion was founded in the 8th century BC by Chalcidian and Zanklian settlers at the southwestern tip of Italy. The city had scarce fertile hinterland and was accordingly maritime-oriented. Together with its sister city Zankle-Messina, it controlled the strategically crucial Strait of Messina, through which the majority of the maritime trade between the northwestern and eastern Mediterranean was conducted.

Its location on the Italian mainland afforded it some protection from the regularly erupting Carthaginian-Greek wars in Sicily, but Rhegion came into conflict with the Syracusan tyrant Dionysios at the beginning of the 4th century BC. An initial siege in 396 BC was repelled, but a lost naval battle in 389 led to a renewed siege of the city, which was finally conquered and destroyed in 387 BC. This also marked the end of the wonderful classical coinage of the city, which depicted the city's emblem, the frontal lion's head, on its magnificent tetradrachms.
7500 CHF
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