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Ira and Larry Goldberg World and Ancient Coin Auction

goldbergs_oct09_auction_catThe Goldberg’s will be holding a World and Ancient Coin Auction on October 29th and 30th in Beverley Hills CA, and as with all of their sales, interest is high. The online catelog has been posted and there are several notable highlights.

The sale will be held in two sessions; Thursday the 29th Session 1, Ancient Coins & Antiquities and Friday the 30th, Session 2, World Coins.

The Top 10 rarest items are as follows:

1) Lot 1501 Ireland. Penny, 1938. Struck in bronze, Harp, with “eire” to left, date 1938 to right. Reverse: Hen left with chicks, 1d above, value in Gaelic in exergue, small PM to upper right (initials of Percy Metcalfe) toothed border both sides. The rarest coin in the Irish Series. PCGS graded MS-65 Brown. .

The design differs from the previous issue which was for the “Free State of Ireland” and stated that to the left of the harp in Gaelic.
This piece was the only known specimen until one further piece was discovered in a safe at the Irish Treasury Department in Dublin. That specimen is now on prominent display at the National Museum of Dublin, in Colm Barracks, Dublin, Ireland. Therefore this is still the only specimen available to collectors of the series as the prototype piece for the design of the Irish Republic Coinage. The design was used unchanged for the Penny from 1940 until Decimalisation in 1971.
Estimated Value $70,000 – 80,000.

pharnakes_gold2) Lot 118 Octavian and Julius Caesar. Gold Aureus (6.84 g) minted in Italy, 43 BC. Bare head right of Octavian. Reverse: Laureate head right of Caesar. Cr. 490/2; CRI 132. Striking irregularity. Very Rare. Very Fine with an excellent portrait of Julius Caesar. .

In assembling a set of the “Twelve Caesars” in gold, the two most difficult to find with appealing portraits are Julius Caesar and Otho.
Estimated Value $30,000 – 40,000.

3) Lot 86 Judaea. The Bar Kokhba War, 132-135 CE. Large Bronze (32. 5 mm.; 21.19 g), dated Year Two, struck 133/134 CE. Filleted olive wreath, Palaeo-Hebrew inscription in two lines within (“Shim’on”). Reverse: Twin-handled, fluted amphora; Palaeo-Hebrew inscription around (“Year two of the freedom of Israel”). Mildenberg 19 (11 examples cited); Hendin 705; Mesh. AJC II, p. 270, 39. Very rare. NGC graded Extremely Fine. This coin is essentially as struck, and so we consider the piece a Superb Extremely Fine at the least.

Leo Mildernberg, who wrote the important corpus analyzing the Bar Kokhba coin series, considered the reverse die of the large bronze series, bearing the fluted amphora (seen on the above coin), as the finest and most beautiful design “in the entire Bar Kokhba coinage.” .
Estimated Value $30,000 – 40,000.
Provenance: Illustrated in Money of the World, coin 25. Ex Millennia Sale, lot 55.

4) Lot 1022 Great Britain. Pattern Shilling or Half Florin, Struck in Gold, Undated. Similar to ESC-1395 (ESC-1391 on holder). Not in Wilson and Rasmussen. Plain edge. By C H Wiener and W J Taylor. Victoria, 1837-1901. Coronetted head facing left, with legend type VICTORIA REGINA. Reverse: Crowned shield in garter. Presumably Unique. NGC graded Proof 64 Ultra Cameo.
Estimated Value $22,000 – 25,000.
Provenance: Ex: Murdoch Collection Part III, Lot 536 (Evan Roberts was the buyer in the Murdoch sale and this coin has been sourced from the Grandchildren of Evan Roberts).

5) Lot 51 Kingdom of the Cimmerian Bosporos. Pharnakes II, 63-47 BC. Gold Stater (8.24 g), Panticapaeum mint, struck 53/52 BC. Diademed bust of Pharnakes right, with luxuriant hair. Reverse: Apollo, semi-draped, seated left on lion-footed throne, holding laurel branch over tripod, left elbow resting on kithara at his side; name and titles above and below, X monogram to right, EMS above (year 245, Pontic Era). Golenko & Karyszkowski, “The Gold Coinage of King Pharnaces of the Bosporus,” in Numismatic Chronicle, 1972, no. 6 (same dies); Fr-156. Finely centered on a spacious, nearly round flan. Lustrous. Exemplary, sensitive portrait — among the finest in this series. Very Rare. NGC graded About Uncirculated. .
Estimated Value $20,000 – 25,000.

Provenance: At the time of the Numismatic Chronicle survey, Golenko & Karyszkowski had assembled a corpus of 15 known specimens of the Pharnakes gold coins, ranging in date from c. 55-50 BC. Since then a few more examples have surfaced, with a total known population probably not exceeding 25. Of these, 10 are located within museum collections. The famed Hunt specimen, with nearly as fine a portrait, but of a somewhat lower grade (Extremely Fine), realized $29,700 (including the 10% premium) in the Sotheby New York sale of June 19, 1990 (lot 115). Illustrated in Money of the World, coin 22. Ex Millennia Sale, lot 35.

6) Lot 176 Lucius Verus, AD 161-169. Gold Aureus (7.33 g) minted at Rome, AD 162-163. Bare head right of Lucius Verus, wearing cuirass and drapery. Reverse: Salus standing left, feeding snake twined around altar. RIC 496. Lustrous; Virtually Mint State.
Estimated Value $15,000 – 17,500.

7) Lot 165 Hadrian, AD 117-138. Gold Aureus (6.92g). Bare head right of Hadrian. Reverse: Hadrian on horseback right, raising right hand. RIC 348a; Calicó 1219. Elegant portrait style, struck in very high relief. Lustrous, superb; Virtually Mint State. .

Possessing a most impressive and highly detailed portrait of Hadrian, this remarkable aureus was minted late in AD 128, when the emperor returned to Rome after visiting Africa as part of his provincial travels. During 12 of his reigning years, Hadrian ruled from Rome for no more than two or three years! At the close of AD 128, Hadrian and his entourage were again abroad, this time, visiting Athens .
Estimated Value $15,000 – 20,000.

8) Lot 197 Numerian, AD 283-284. Gold Aureus (4.39g). Laureate bust of Numerian facing right. Reverse: Abundantia standing left, emptying cornucopia. RIC V, part II, 451 [as R2]; C. 2. Well struck and perfectly centered. Lustrous, superb Nearly Mint State.
Estimated Value $15,000 – 20,000.

9) Lot 846 Roman Bronze Inscription Tablet. 1st Century A.D. Bronze document with inset inscription, the edges thickend, a boss on each of the handles. Tablet regards the purchase and subsequent gift of farmland to the priests of Zeus. Greek inscription:

“Under the rule of Sopyros (the son of Aristoss) for the year of Rhodon, bought from Zenon (the son) of Rhoizos a field through ______ and through, the public street for the price of 210 denarii which price the seller has declared to have received from the buyer. The ____ was gifted by the buyer to the Priests of Zeus.” Ends in a prayer “When from sacrifice the written Word”.
Estimated Value $15,000 – 20,000.
Provenance: Coll. Siblings. P. and F., Southern Germany. Slg. Geschwister P. und F., Suddeutschland (ca. 1970-1990).

10) Lot 1093 Italian States – Venice. Gold Medal, Undated. Similar obverse designs as Voltolina #1069 (Vol. II, 255) and Voltolina #933,#102. Weight 82 grams. 54 mm in diameter. Alvise Mocenigo II Doge CXX, 1700-1709. Obverse: Angel blowing horn left and woman figure holding leaf branch right; in center oval shield with legend: * S. C * / ALOYSIVS/ MOCENICVS / DVX. VEN/ ET. C. Reverse: Seated woman figure seated right placing hand on Wing Lion holding shield. Voltolina identifies such pieces as an award medal resulting from a decree of the Senate commending the doge for worthy service. Made with frame to be worn. This spectacular medal is certainly a museum-quality piece, of the highest rarity. Extremely Fine.
Estimated Value $12,000 – 15,000.

For more information on the sale or to view the online catelog, visit Goldbergs website at

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