Two gold coins of exceptional value issued in the mint of Sarmizegetusa Regia, over two millennia ago, return to Romania


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In a few days, two extremely rare gold coins will be brought back to the country, which were recovered thanks to the collaboration with the British authorities. The two ancient gold coins recovered during this year are statues issued in the 1st century BC, announces the National Museum of History of Romania.

The return of the two gold coins to the country – a Koson-type stater, the monogram-free version and a pseudo-Lysimachos-type stater issued in Callatis, is the result of direct collaboration between the Office of the Attaché of Internal Affairs at the Romanian Embassy in London and Metropolitan police. Police London – Art & Antiques Unit.

The two ancient gold coins recovered during this year are staters issued in the 1st century BC. One of the pieces is a stater issued by King Koson (c. 44-29 BC), one of Burebista’s descendants and shows on the obverse an eagle with a laurel wreath in his right claw, and on the reverse the legend KOSON rendered in Greek letters and a group of three lecturers.

The iconography of these coins imitates the representations found on the Roman silver denarii issued by Q. Pomponius Rufus in 73 BC, respectively by M. Junius Brutus in 54 BC. The stater from the mint of the ancient fortress on the Dobrudja coast of the Black Sea Callatis, issued in the first century BC, shows on the obverse the head of King Alexander the Great, deified as an Egyptian god, while on the reverse is the goddess Athena Nikephoros seated on a throne and the name of the issuing city.

The golden staters of the Dacian king Koson are attested in the literature since 1543, when a treasure containing no less than 40,000 gold coins, pseudo-Lysimachos and Koson statues, was discovered in the Strei riverbed. Koson-type statesmen are the only Dacian gold issues bearing a legend written in Greek characters, mentioning the name of the issuing sovereign. The coins were issued in the mint of Sarmizegetusa Regia, around 44-29 BC. Thanks to these coins we know today fundamental information about the political history, economic, social life or art and religion of Dacia in the years following the disappearance of Burebista. The statues issued in the cities on the western coast of the Black Sea (Callatis, Tomis and Histria) are constant presences in treasures consisting of both Koson-type monetary issues and gold ornaments, illustrating the political and economic ties between the Greek cities of Dobrogea and The Dacian Kingdom.

The two coins, extremely rare, are part of a treasure stolen from the area of ​​the old Dacian capital Sarmizegetusa Regia – area with protected archaeological heritage – by people involved in illegal detection and excavation activities in this area, being subsequently smuggled out. from Romania and put on sale on the international numismatic market in Europe and the USA.

The two ancient gold coins, recently recovered by the Romanian authorities, will be exhibited for the first time on the occasion of the press conference that will take place at the National Museum of History of Romania on June 29.

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