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Topical Collections: Ancient Animals - Ram

Troas-Kebren, AR Obol, c.510-490 BC
(No legend)
Ram's head right
(No legend)
Irregular incuse
6mm x 7mm, 0.50g
BMC Troas 5
Ex John Mixter Collection; Ex Glenn Woods, VCoins, 2005; Ex David Vagi, private purchase, 2005; Ex Paul Rubin, private purchase, 2005

Anonymous Issue under Nero, AE Small Denomination, 56/57 (Caesarean Year 105), Syria: Seleucis and Pieria-Antiochia ad Orontem
Veiled, turreted head of Tyche right, countermark of star (of Bethlehem?) in left field
Ram leaping right, looking back, star and crescent above
ET EP in exergue
16mm, 4.38g
Butcher Antioch 121; SNG Copenhagen 101

Note: The reason this coin is perfectly round is because it was used for more than just a coin. The edges have been rounded and a V-shaped groove cut into the entire edge of the coin, making it a perfect fit for an amulet to wear without piercing it, or for use in a machine where a grooved roller/spacer would be needed. Given the historical allusions on this coin, I would guess it was set in an amulet in ancient times.

Note: Michael Molnar, an astronomer, believes this coin depicts Jupiter's occultation of Aries in 6 B.C., the most probable "Star of Bethlehem."