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HOME : Greek Coins : Macedonian Coins : Silver Tetradrachm Depicting King Philip V
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Silver Tetradrachm Depicting King Philip V - C.3021
Origin: Mediterranean
Circa: 221 BC to 179 BC

Collection: Numismatics
Medium: Silver

Additional Information: SOLD
Location: United States
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Obverse: Diademed Head of the King with Beard Facing Right

Reverse: Athena Alkidemos Facing Left, Holding Thunderbolt and Shield

Philip V was one of the last great Macedonian sovereigns ruling from 221 to 179, whose attempt to extend Macedonian influence throughout Greece resulted in his defeat by Rome. Philip assumed the throne at the age of seventeen and quickly won renown by supporting the Hellenic League in its war against Sparta, Aetolia, and Elis (220-217). Later, after the defeat of the Romans at Cannae, he completed a treaty with Hannibal in 215. Philip, allied with Hannibal, attacked the Roman client states in Illyria and initiated 10 years of inconclusive warfare against Rome, known as the First Macedonian War. The Romans countered his moves with an alliance with the Greek cities of the Aetolian League, but Philip effectively aided his allies. When the Romans withdrew in 207, he forced an independent settlement upon Aetolia (206) and concluded the war with Rome on favorable terms. Philip then plotted against Rhodes and in 203-202 conspired with Antiochus III of Syria to plunder the possessions of the Egyptian king Ptolemy V. But the people of Rhodes and Pergamum defeated Philip at sea off Chios and so exaggerated reports of his aggression that Rome decided to declare war again, thus igniting the Second Macedonian War. Successive Roman campaigns in Macedonia and Thessaly shook Philip's position in Greece, and in 197 the Romans decisively defeated him at Cynoscephalae in Thessaly. Until 189, Philip aided Rome against her enemies on the Greek peninsula. Philip devoted the last decade of his life to consolidating his kingdom. He reorganized finances, transplanted populations, reopened mines, and issued central and local currencies such as this coin.

How many hands have touched a coin in your pocket or your purse? What eras and lands have the coin traversed on its journey into our possession? As we reach into our pockets to pull out some change, we rarely hesitate to think of who touched the coin before us, or where the coin will venture to after us. More than money, coins are a symbol of the state that struck them, of a specific time and place, whether contemporary currencies or artifacts of long forgotten empires. This stunning hand-struck coin reveals an expertise of craftsmanship and intricate sculptural detail that is often lacking in contemporary machine-made currencies. This coin is a memorial an ancient king and his kingdom passed from the hands of civilization to civilization, from generation to generation that still appears as vibrant today as the day it was struck.
- (C.3021)


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