Tetradrachm of Bagadates I

Tetradrachm of Bagadates I

Tetradrachm Bagadates I

Period: Classical Greece

Country: Persia

Denomination: Tetradrachm

Ruler: Bagadates I


Weight: 16,68 g

Quality: Almost EF (MBC+)

Auction house: Jesús Vico

Date: 9 March 2017

Starting price: 9.000 euros

Historical context

After the death of Alexander the Great, the Persis Empire emerged in the homeland of the Achaemenid Empire. As it happened in other territories conquered by Alexander the Great, the Persian Empire soon distinguished itself as a unique territory with their own local rules. However, they adopted some conventions of Greek life, such as coinage. Bagadates I (also transcribed as Bagadat) was the first king of Persis and this coin shows how he tries to distinguish himself from the Greeks. His portrait is full of local iconography; Bagadates I is represented wearing a kyrbasia (the hat) and pendant earring. On the reverse Bagadates I is depicted in front of a Zoroastrian altar, as he was also a frataraka. Despite all this, the Greek influence on this coin is absolutely clear: the obverse of the coin represents the portrait of the ruler while the reverse represents a scene; the weight, the composition and the diameter of the coin is the same as a Greek tetradrachm; and the minting technique is the same as it was in Greece.

Here you can find more information about this coin.


Although the coin in auction is rare it is not difficult to find references in the international market. We can take as price references this coin (8.000 CHF), this coin (6.100 GBP) and this coin (10.000 euros). Hence, a reasonable hammer price for the coin in auction would be up to 10.000 euros.

Description from the seller

REYES DE PERSIA. Persis. Bagadat. Tetradracma (circa 300 a.C.). A/ Cabeza diademada de Bagadat a der. con Kyrbasia, barba, bigote y pendiente. R/ Templo del fuego de Ahura-Mazda; a la izq. Bagadat. AR 16,68 g. BMC-2. ALRAM-515. Rev. ligeramente descentrado. MBC+. Muy rara.



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