NY International (#95) 01/10/2017 7:00 PM EST CLOSED! Buyers Premium of 18.00% added to each and every lot

Lot 48 of 2626:
Judaea, Bar Kokhba Revolt. Silver Sela (14.21 g), 132-135 CE  

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Lot closed - Winning bid:$57,500

Judaea, Bar Kokhba Revolt. Silver Sela (14.21 g), 132-135 CE. Year 1 (132/3 CE). 'Jerusalem' (Paleo Hebrew), tetrastyle façade of the Temple of Jerusalem; show bread table or Ark of the Covenant in chest form with semicircular lid and short legs, seen from a narrow side. Rev. 'Year one of the redemption of Israel' (Paleo-Hebrew), lulav with etrog at left. (Mildenberg 3 (O1/R3); TJC 218; Hendin 1373). Exceptional quality and nice toning. Superb extremely fine. Estimate $60,000UP
Ex Leu 91 (10 May 2004), lot 295.
The Year 1 (132-33 CE) Sela of the Bar Kokhba Revolt classically depicts, on the reverse, the four species of the holiday of Succos which are observed by Jews even today. According to the Talmud, the four species consist of one citron (etrog), one palm fond (lu lav) on each side of which are three (3) myrtle twigs (hadassim) and two (2) willow twigs (aravos). However, Rabbi Akiva suggested that there should be only one myrtle twig on one side and one willow twig on the other side of the palm fond (lulav). His opinion was not accepted. Nonetheless, since Rabbi Akiva felt that Simon Bar Kokhba was the Jewish Messiah and it may be noted that on all the selas (tetradrachmas) of Bar Kokhba, on close inspection, there appears to be only one myrtle and one willow as in the opinion of Rabbi Akiva. Another interesting observation on many of the Bar Kokhba selas (tetradrachms), the depicted etrog has a constriction in the middle as if it is wearing a belt or "garter". Many Jews today prefer such an etrog, with a "garter", on their own clothes (Hassidic cus-tom). This may be indicative of the belt separating the upper "clean" part of the body from the lower.

The Bar Kokhba War (132-135 CE) broke out when Hadrian decided to refound Jerusalem - still largely ruined from the disastrous Jewish Revolt (66-73 CE) - as the pagan city of Aelia Capitolina. Although Jewish discontent had already erupted into violence in the Diaspora during the reign of Trajan, the Jews of Judaea seem not to have risen up against the Romans until this threatened abomination against the site of the Temple and the surrounding Holy City. The leader of this new rebellion, which took the form of a bloody guerilla war, was Simon bar Kokhba who had messianic pretensions and gained a reputation as a great warrior. Unfortunately, although Bar Kokhba managed to make Hadrian pay dearly for Aelia Capitolina, when the emperor assembled an army of six full legions to invade Judaea in 134 CE the rebellion was soon crushed. In punishment almost the entirety of Judaea was laid waste by the victorious Romans and the Jewish population destroyed or driven out.

In order to fund the rebellion, Bar Kokhba and his supporters used what circulating coins they could find or capture from the Romans and restruck them with new types more suitable for their revolutionary purposes. The most remarkable and desirable of the new types were used for the silver sela overstruck primarily on Syrian and Phoenician tetradrachms. The obverse features a depiction of the façade of the Jerusalem Temple with an uncertain object inside, which has been variously interpreted as the show bread table or the Ark of the Covenant. It has been suggested that the Bar Kokhba rebels intended to rebuild the Temple, but the presence of either the show bread table or the Ark - items lost at the end of the Jewish Revolt or earlier - seems to imply that the image represents the idea of the Temple to rally support rather than any real edifice planned by the Bar Kokhba rebels. The reverse type looks back to the coinage of the Jewish Revolt in its depiction of the lulav and etrog associated with the Fest of Tabernacles.

Categories: Jewish Coins and Weights, The Jewish War - 66-70 CE

Terms and conditions

18% Buyer's Premium


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(a)we reserve the right to re-assess the Lot or engage at our expense any expert or authority considered by us at our sole discretion to have the necessary expertise to undertake a re-assessment of the Lot;

(b)following our re-assessment of the Lot, you agree to be bound by ourdecision as to whether or not the Lot is a Forgery.

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(a)the grounds for claiming that the Lot is a Forgery is based primarily on adifference of opinion between us and a third party providing coin grading services;

(b)the grounds for claiming that the Lot is a Forgery is by reason of anydamage and/or restoration and/or modification work of any nature;

(c) the description of the Lot in the Catalog was in accordance with generallyaccepted opinions of numismatic specialists as at the date of publication or the catalog indicated that there was a conflict of opinion.

(d)it has been proved that the Lot is a Forgery by applying a method thatwas unavailable or not generally applied within the industry of numismatics as at the date of publication of the catalog or was disproportionately expensive, in both cases as determined in our absolute discretion.

7.6. If we agree that the Lot is a Forgery then subject to:

(a) you being able to confirm in writing that you can transfer legal and beneficial title to the Lot to us or as directed by us free from all encumbrances or third party claims of any nature; and

(b) the exclusions in Condition 7.7,

then the sale of the Lot will be rescinded so that it is cancelled and we will refund the Purchase Price to you in full.

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11.1. In these Conditions:

‘Auction Agent’, ‘Auctioneer’, ‘us’ or ‘we’ means A. H. Baldwin & Sons Ltd., Dmitry Markov Coins & Medals, M&M Numismatics Ltd., and Ira & Larry Goldberg Coins & Collectibles Inc.;

‘Bidder’ and 'you' means a person making, attempting to make or considering making a bid for a Lot including a Buyer;

‘Buyer’ means the person who makes the highest bid for a Lot which is accepted by the auctioneer and if the person is acting as an agent, will be a reference to its principal only if Auction Agent has accepted the agency in writing;

‘Catalog’ means a catalog, price list or other publication or price list;

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‘Hammer Price’ means the amount of the highest bid for a Lot accepted by the auctioneer;

‘Including’ or ‘include’ mean including without limitation and include without limitation, respectively;

‘Lot’ means any item deposited with us for sale at auction including items described against any Lot number in a Catalog;

'Purchase Price' means the Hammer Price plus Buyer's Premium and New York sales tax, where applicable;

'Reserve' means a confidential price below which the Auctioneer will not sell a Lot or will re-purchase on behalf of the Seller or for the account of Auctioneer. Unless otherwise specified at the time of Lot consignment, this will be set at approximately 80% of the Lot estimate at complete discretion of the auctioneer;

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11.2. Headings in these Conditions are for convenience only and shall not affect their interpretation.