Numismatik Lanz München   |   Auction 160   |   15 June 2015 Sort by Lot-NumberSort by Estimate
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Lot 21

Estimate: 25'000 EUR   |   Starting price: 15'000 EUR Price realized: 32'000 EUR
Golstater, 276 - 272, Tarent. Kopf des Zeus mit Lorbeerkranz nach rechts, dahinter NK-Monogramm. Rs: TAPANTINΩN, Adler auf Blitznach links stehend, im linken Inneren Feld AP-Monogramm, über dem rechten Flügel Σ[ΩΣI]. Vlasto 36 (stempelgleich), Fischer-Bossert G38 (V34/R38). 8,56g. Prachtvolles Exemplar. Stempelglanz/ vorzüglich. Pyrrhus was the former king of the Greek tribe of the Molossians before he became king of Epirus. He still is famous for his strategical military skills as he was one of the strongest opponents of early Rome. Some of his battles, though successful, cost him heavy losses, from which the proverb "Pyrrhic victory" was coined. In 281 BC, the Greek city of Tarentum, in southern Italy, fell out with Rome and was faced with a Roman attack and certain defeat. Rome had already made itself into a major power, and was poised to subdue all the Greek cities in Magna Graecia. The Tarentines asked Pyrrhus to lead their war against the Romans. Pyrrhus was encouraged to aid the Tarentines by the oracle of Delphi. He entered Italy with an army consisting of 3.000 cavalry, 2.000 archers, 500 slingers, 20.000 infantry and 20 war elephants in a bid to subdue the Romans. Pyrrhus met the Roman Army in the Battle of Asculum where Pyrrhus won a very costly victory. Pyrrhus later famously commented on his victory at Asculum, stating, "If we are victorious in one more battle with the Romans, we shall be utterly ruined". After another Battle against a superior Roman army at Beneventum in 275 BC, Pyrrhus decided to end his campaign in Italy and return to Epirus which resulted in the loss of all his Italian holdings. This outstanding general sustained an inglorious death in Argos. Unusual well preserved specimen, witnessing the rise of Rome and its early imperialistic endeavours.

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