Bertolami Fine Arts   |   Auction 44   |   20 April 2018 Sort by Lot-NumberSort by Estimate
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Lot 75

Estimate: 2'500 GBP   |   Starting price: 1'800 GBP Price realized: 3'600 GBP
Sicily, Katane, Drachm, ca. 412-410 BC; AR (g 3,72; mm 19; h 12); Female charioteer, holding kentron and reins, driving galloping quadriga to r.; above, Nike flying to l. crowning charioteer with wreath held in outstretched arms, Rv. AMENANOΣ, head of Amenanos l., wearing tainia; around, two fish and crayfish. SNG Manchester 384 (same dies).
A very rare unsigned work by Prokles. Cabinet tone, well centered and good extremely fine.

This drachm was struck during the golden age of Sicilian numismatic art, when masters such as Euainetos and Kimon were at the height of their skill. Some of these masters exhibited their work on various issues at Katane, and Mirone lists two series of drachms during this time, from dies by Choirion and Euainetos, some of which were even signed. Nearly all of the very rare drachms of this type are struck from dies of these two engravers. Years after Mirone’s work, though, a drachm was published in the Lloyd Collection (catalog no. 906), which was struck from unsigned dies, but closely resembled the style of the Katane tetradrachms whose dies were engraved by Prokles. Notable details of this style are the double exergue line on the obverse, the upright posture of the charioteer, the positioning of the legs of the horses, and the style of the hair of Amenanos. Over the years, a few more specimens have come to light that exhibit these same characteristics; clearly all of these drachms are from the work of the same master celator. Incidentally, the absence of the city ethnic here is not unusual during this period; one drachm of Choirion (Mirone 67), and some of the tetradrachms engraved by each of the masters likewise lack this element.

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