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Archeology All aspects of archeology, including moral, ethical, and legal considerations.

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Old Aug 12, 2010, 07:01 AM   #1
Flavus
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Rare 2,200-year-old gold coin found in Israel

I just saw that today on the news. A team of University of Michigan and University of Minnesota archeologists found a 27.7 (!!!) gram gold coin in Israel. Amazing.

http://www.cnn.com/2010/WORLD/meast/...ex.html?hpt=C2

The obverse, or 'head' of the coin, portrays Queen Arsinoe II Philadelphus.
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Old Aug 12, 2010, 08:08 AM   #2
cogito
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I don't collect Ptolemaic coins (unless minted in Cyrene), so I'm not up on the latest and greatest on gold from the period. But, unless coins from this ruler of this size are particularly rare, I'm underwhelmed by the news. I've seen better condition large sized Ptolemaic gold in just about all of the catalog sales.

On a related note, why is it that we're getting all of this coin-related news flashes from finds in Israel? Are they not finding anything else there that is news worthy from an archeological stand-point? I don't get it.

J
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Old Aug 12, 2010, 01:57 PM   #3
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The news is huge, first of all, for Israel itself ("the coin ranked in the top five of the rarest finds in that country's history", "the heaviest gold coin with the highest contemporary value of any coin ever found in an excavation in Israel", "It is only the second gold Ptolemaic coin ever found in Israel."). And besides, not every day archeologists find one ounce ancient gold coins.
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Old Aug 12, 2010, 02:04 PM   #4
cogito
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O.K., it's just that this is the 3 or 4th coin-related Israel story we've seen in about 1 year. The paranoid in me sees the increased media attention of coin-related finds as potentially hurtful to the collector community's efforts to keep coins out of the cultural transfer prohibitions.

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Old Aug 12, 2010, 03:18 PM   #5
Flavus
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cogito View Post
O.K., it's just that this is the 3 or 4th coin-related Israel story we've seen in about 1 year. The paranoid in me sees the increased media attention of coin-related finds as potentially hurtful to the collector community's efforts to keep coins out of the cultural transfer prohibitions.

J
The paranoid in me agrees with you 100 per cent, J.
And finds this Year of Israel in archeology and numismatics rather odd too.
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Old Aug 12, 2010, 03:29 PM   #6
4to2centophilia
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I have had to explain to more than a few people that the coin is only worth a few thousand dollars. They all thought that the coin must be priceless.
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