Apolonia Ancient Art offers ancient Greek, Roman, Egyptian, and Pre-Columbian works of art Apolonia Ancient Art
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Ancient World : Greek : Pre AD 1000 item #1226221
Apolonia Ancient Art
This Thasos silver tetradrachm coin is mint state (FDC) to superb quality grade (EF+/EF+), and dates circa 2nd-1st century B.C. This superb graded piece is approximately 34 mm wide, and weighs 17.1 gms. This attractive piece is well centered and shows on the obverse (Obv.) a young bust of Dionysus, wreathed with grape leaves and bunches. The reverse (Rev.) shows a very muscular nude standing Herakles, holding a club in his right hand, and over his left arm, a cloak made from the skin of the Nemean lion. The impressive standing nude Herakles, is also more defined and muscular than what is normally seen, and this coin is a better example than most of the other examples that have been on the market. The (Rev.) also shows a legend in Greek lettering seen on each side of Herakles and below. The lettering to the right reads "HERAKLES"; and below reads "THASOS", which refers to the island of Thasos where this coin was likely minted. This coin type is also classified as a Celtic imitation of the Thasos types, and this is likely the case for this coin type, but it may be that the majority of these coins were minted by Thasos for trade with the Thracian interior. The pieces with better artistic style are generally recognized as being from the Thasos mint, as the piece offered here, and the piece offered here has great artistic style for the period. Thasos is a Greek island in the northern Aegean Sea off the coast of Thrace, and was colonized by the Phoenicians for its gold mines. The Phoenicians also established a religious cult on the island to their god Melkart, who later came to be identified with the Greek god Herakles when the island was Hellenized circa 650 B.C. The depiction of the Thracian wine god Dionysus was also adopted on the subsequent Thracian coinage as well. In 197 B.C., the Romans defeated Philip V of Macedon at the battle of Cynoscephalae, and thus made Thasos a "free" city state. Pliny the Elder was later to describe Thasos as still being a "free" city state in the 1st century A.D. This coin is better than most examples, regarding the artistic style and the impressive muscular Herakles seen on the reverse, and has traces of mint luster. Ex: Harlan J. Berk, Chicago, Ill., circa 1989. References: Sear 1759. BMC 74 (var.). SNG Copenhagen 1046 (var.). I certify that this piece is authentic as to date, culture, and condition:
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Ancient World : Roman : Pre AD 1000 item #1301382
Apolonia Ancient Art
This scarce piece is a Roman bronze ring that dates circa 2nd-3rd century A.D., and features a reclined woman (Leda) with a swan on top. This Roman erotic type piece is approximately ring size 6 (16mm inner diameter), and was likely made for a young woman or girl. This piece is intact, has no repair/restoration, and is a solid bronze cast piece that can be worn today. This piece also has an attractive dark green patina that is an even color over the entire piece. This piece is in superb to mint condition, and has no wear on the outer surface, with only some slight wear on the inner surface of the hoop. This piece features a nude and reclined woman (Leda) who is seen reclined to the left, raised on her elbows, and has a swan positioned between her bent knees. The swan has his wings outstretched above, and has his neck looped up and down with his head kissing a breast. The piece offered here depicts the Greek myth of "Leda and the Swan", in which Zeus in the form of a Swan makes love to Leda, who gave birth to two sets of twins, one of each pair being mortal and immortal. One set of the twins was male, Castor and Pollux, and the other female, Helen and Clytemnestra. This ancient Greek myth was extremely popular in the Hellenistic Period, circa 3rd-2nd century B.C., and continued down into the Roman Imperial Period. A Roman carved gem, dated circa 3rd century A.D., showing the exact scene seen on the piece offered here, is seen in Christie's Ancient Jewelry, New York, Dec. 2004, no. 160. ($4,000.00-$6,000.00 estimates. See attached photo.) The relief of the figures seen on the piece offered is very high, and are very clear. The entire scene was also stamped into the flat top bezel of the ring, and the main body of the ring was cast as one solid piece. The design seen on this ring would have have been made like an ancient Greek or Roman bronze coin, and in both cases, the designs were stamped and struck with a carved punch die. The stamp punch die, for the erotic design seen here, may also have been used for additional rings and other objects as well. In addition, this ring may have been worn by an individual who was connected with the ancient Roman sex trade, and this ring may have served as an identifying symbol for the individual who wore this scarce ring. A ring such as this erotic type, would also have likely been worn by many individuals who lived in a city with a prevalent sex trade such as Pompeii. This piece also comes with a ring stand display base, and can easily be removed. Ex: Joel Malter collection, circa 1980's, Los Angeles, CA. (Note: Additional documentation is available to the purchaser.) I certify that this piece is authentic as to date, culture, and condition:
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Ancient World : Near Eastern : Pre AD 1000 item #1027193
Apolonia Ancient Art
This extremely rare piece is an early Islamic glass flask, circa 6th-8th century A.D. This intact piece is approximately 2.8 inches high, and is a light green color with multi-colored iridescence that is seen on various inner and outer sections of the vessel. This piece is rather thick walled, has a fairly wide indented bottom, a short tubular neck that has a slight flattening at the base, and a pontil-mark on the bottom. In addition, the neck is folded to the inside, and there are three stepped bulges seen within the neck which are a light yellow, green, and purple color. This piece is likely an early example of Islamic glass, due to the overall fabric of the vessel and the neck design as noted above. This piece is from an extremely rare early Islamic glass group, and some of these extremely rare pieces from this group are also listed as "possibly Sassanian", but given the probable region, i.e. Syro-Palestinian or Cypriot, where this piece was likely manufactured, a Sassanian attribution from modern day central Iran is highly unlikely. This piece, as being from this extremely rare early Islamic glass group, is also one of the earliest Islamic glass examples recorded. An analogous example listed as "possibly Islamic and of possible Syro-Palestinian or Cypriot manufacture", approximately 2.5 inches high, is seen in "Roman and Pre-Roman Glass in the Royal Ontario Museum", by John B. Hayes, Royal Ontario Museum Pub., 1975, no. 670. (See attached photo.) Another extremely rare example is seen in Sotheby Park Bernet Inc., Important Antiquities, New York, Dec. 1978, no. 138. (This piece is nearly the same size as the piece offered here, and is listed as "probably later Sassanian or early Islamic, circa 5th-8th century A.D.") The example offered here has a type of construction within the neck that required a great deal of skill, and is more advanced than the typical late Roman blown glass that is seen in the 4th-5th century A.D. Islamic glass also tends to have several colors within the glass, in contrast to the Sassanian culture, which was known for producing faceted cut glass that was more uniform in color. The Sassanian culture, circa 6th-8th century A.D., was from central modern day Iran, and was very skilled at glass production, and they are known for being able to take a solid cube of glass and carve/sculpt this into a faceted cup, bowl, or a plate. The exceptional small flask offered here is not only in mint condition, but it is also a type that is not seen on the market or in private collections. This extremely rare piece is a little gem and would be an excellent addition to a collection of ancient glass. Ex: Ex: Joel Malter collection, Los Angeles, CA. Ex: Private CA. collection. (Note: Additional documentation is available to the purchaser.) I certify that this piece is authentic as to date, culture, and condition:
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Ancient World : Greek : Pre AD 1000 item #1281520
Apolonia Ancient Art
This scarce piece is a Greek Messapian stamnos that dates circa early 4th century B.C. This piece is approximately 10.25 inches high, by 9.8 inches in diameter. This large and decorative example has a knobbed lid at the top, and two raised handles that are seen on the upper shoulder of the vessel. This piece is a light tan terracotta, with some light brown and red concentric circles that run around the main body of the piece, and these decorative elements are also seen on the knobbed raised lid. This piece also has a "drip designed" decorative element that is seen running around the upper shoulder, and the upper top section of the lid. This "drip designed" decorative element was formed by simply dripping the glaze onto the surface of the vessel, and this formed the individual teardrop marks that are seen within the entire design that runs around the piece. This Greek vessel is also classified as being "Messapian", which refers to the geographical region of southern Italy, but this classification is a bit of a misnomer, as it is probable that "Messapian" type ceramics were produced by Greek artists for the local non-Greek populace. This may also explain why this type of large-scale "Messapian" type piece is scarce to rare, and is seldom seen on the market. This piece is also a large example for the type, and it is intact, save for some minor repair to the lid, and overall, this piece is a superb example that is 100% original. This piece has some minute spotty black mineral and white calcite deposits, seen mostly on the interior of the vessel. This type of vessel has a flat bottom, and was ideal for grain storage, and this piece was also likely used for everyday use. It may also have been votive, with an offering within, and this type of piece also served as a burial urn. This piece has nice eye appeal, and is a large decorative example. Ex: Private German collection, circa 1950's-1980's. (Note: Additional documentation is available to the purchaser, including EU Export and US Customs Import documentation.) I certify that this piece is authentic as to date, culture, and condition:
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Ancient World : Roman : Coins : Pre AD 1000 item #1397702
Apolonia Ancient Art
This Superb to FDC graded & scarce Roman silver denarius was minted in Rome by Hadrian, and dates circa 134-138 A.D. This coin has a large flan, is perfectly centered, weighs 3.49 gms, and is in Superb to FDC condition (EF+/EF+) with a great deal of mint lustre on the surfaces. The obverse (Obv.) shows a laureate Hadrian facing right with a bare neck; and HADRIANVS behind, with AVG.COS.III.P.P front. The reverse (Rev.) shows the goddess Egypt reclining left, holding a sistrum, and an ibis is seen at her feet; AEGYPTOS seen left and above, with a dotted border around. This coin also has high relief, and exceptional detail with the hair of Hadrian and the drapery seen on the goddess Egypt. This coin was also minted to commemorate the travels of Hadrian in Egypt and down the Nile. This coin varient with the bare neck is scarce, as most examples show Hadrian with a draped neck. A choice and scarce example for the type. References: RIC 297; C. 106; BMC 799. Ex: Harlan Berk collection, Chicago, Ill., circa 1980's. I certify that this piece is authentic as to date, culture, and condition:
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Ancient World : Roman : Pre AD 1000 item #1362411
Apolonia Ancient Art
This superb Roman bronze is a portrait bust of the Roman emperor, Marcus Aurelius, and dates circa 170-180 A.D. This mesmerizing piece is approximately 1.35 inches high, by .8 inches wide, and is a complete bust with most of the lower neck. This piece was part of a figurine, and was broken at the lower neckline, and the bust is a complete example, with no cracks and no other noticeable areas of damage. This realistic portrait bust is in superb condition, and has a beautiful light to dark green patina with some minute red spotty highlights. In addition, there are some light green and blue deposits seen mostly on the inner surface of the piece. This piece is classified as a "Type IV" portrait of Marcus Aurelius, as it shows the emperor in an advanced age with a very full beard. The beard is also divided in the center of the chin that also shows parallel locks of hair. This "Type IV" convention of art can easily be seen on this portrait bust, along with the distinctive arc of hair that frames the forehead. The emperor is also seen wearing a diadem crown in the hair which also signifies the wearer as being regal in status. The overall look of the face also conveys the Stoic nature of this emperor-philosopher, and conveys a peaceful ideal. (For the portrait type see: Klaus Fittschen and P. Zanker, "Katalog Der Romischen Portrats in den Capitolinischen Museen und den Anderen Kommunalen Sammlungen der Stadt Rom", 3V., Berlin: P. von Zabern, 1983-2010.) Marcus Aurelius Antoninus Augustus ruled from circa 161-180 A.D., along with Lucius Verus as co-emperor from circa 161 until Verus' death in 169. During his reign, the empire defeated a revitalized Parthian empire, and fought the Marcomanni, Quadi, and Sarmations with success during the Marcomannic Wars, but it was the Germanic tribes that Marcus fought incessantly with during the remaining years of his rule. The realistic portrait bust offered here was likely created during this time, and is likely a provincial portrait, which may also have been in a private shrine where the Roman legions were stationed near Germania along the Danube. Whatever the case, this portrait served a Roman well in the period in which it was created, and is an excellent image of this important emperor. This attractive piece also sits on a custom display stand, and can easily be removed. Ex: Private Swiss collection, circa 1970's. Ex: Phoenix Ancient Art, New York and Geneva, Switzerland. Ex: Private German collection. (Note: Additional documentation is available to the purchaser, including EU Export and US Customs Import documentation.) I certify that this piece is authentic as to date, culture, and condition:
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Ancient World : Greek : Pre AD 1000 item #1405317
Apolonia Ancient Art
This lovely piece is Greek Apulian bottle that dates circa 350-340 B.C., and is approximately 4.1 inches high. by 2.9 inches in diameter. This piece is also attributed to the "Chevron Painter", who is also classified by A.D. Trendall as being from the "Darius-Underworld" workshop. (See "Red Figure vases of South Italy" by A.D. Trendall, Thames and Hudson, New York, 1989, pp. 89-94.). This piece has a chevron type pattern, seen below the rim and the neck of this vessel, and this hallmark attribute is one of the principle hallmarks of this painter. In addition, the seated woman has thick arms, a yellow dotted necklace and earrings, and a wavy lower ground-line design of her garment which are additional attributes. In her left hand, she is holding a cista (box), and there is also a name seen below her extended right arm. Her left hand also appears to be pointing to this name. This name is likely "DIONE", who was known to the ancient Greeks as an earth-goddess, a consort of Zeus, and the mother of Aphrodite. The backside of this attractive piece has a dark orange/red acanthus pattern, and a small raised ring base. This piece also has very vibrant colors, and is in mint quality condition with no repair and/or restoration. There are also some minute white calcite mineral deposits that are mostly seen on the bottom of the piece. An exceptional and scarce piece that is of a type that is seldom seen on the market. Ex: Robert Feuer collection, New York, circa 1970's-1980's. Ex: Private New York collection, circa 2000's. (Note: Additional documentation is available to the purchaser.) I certify that this piece is authentic as to date, culture, and condition:
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Americas : Pre Columbian : Stone : Pre AD 1000 item #1162134
Apolonia Ancient Art
This interesting piece is an Aztec flint blade which dates circa 1400-1525 A.D. This piece is approximately 6.3 inches high by 2.5 inches wide, and is a large example for the type. This piece is intact, save for a minute chip at one end, and has a beautiful light brown patina with some spotty black mineral deposits. This piece has a small hole near the center of the piece, and this hole is full of minute crystals which are imbedded in the inner cavity, and run to the outer edge of the hole on each side of the piece. It's quite possible that the small hole with crystals was formed from constant mineral drippings, as this piece may have been a ceremonial offering that was buried in a cave or underground tomb. It is interesting to note that the crystals not only extend to the outer edge on each side of the hole, but also over both edges on each side of the piece, and onto the outer carved/chipped planes of the outer flat surfaces near the edge of each side of the hole. This is an indication that the crystal mineralization, and the hole seen on this piece, developed after this piece was carved and buried. The patina and the mineralization are also excellent indicators which go far in establishing the authenticity of this piece, and there are many forgeries of this type of piece that have been on the market. The carving of this piece is exceptional and very well detailed as well, as one can easily see that the carved/chipped planes become smaller towards the edge of the piece, and this forms a blade of elliptical form that has extremely sharp edges. Aztec blades of this type have been used as a lance or knife blade, but the piece offered here was likely used only in a votive context. The flint stone of this piece is also semi-translucent, and according to Eduardo Matos Moctezuma in "The Great Temple of the Aztecs: Treasures of Tenochtitlan", Thames and Hudson Pub., London, 1988, p. 97: "Many objects of flint and obsidian, locally available raw materials, were also made by the Aztec artisans to be deposited in caches. Flint was most frequently chipped into knives and blades. Some of these knives were decorated with with bits of shell and stone mosaic to form little faces in profile, resembling representations of the flint day sign in the Borbonicus. Similarly, obsidian (a volcanic glass) was chipped to form knives and blades with sharp cutting edges, but it was also carefully worked and polished into miniature imitations, such as small heads and rattles of the rattlesnake. Obsidian is an extremely dense and glassy stone, and is a difficult material to work; such miniatures attest to the skill of the Aztec craftsmen. While flint and obsidian implements symbolically and functionally evoke sacrifice and death, more overt evidence of ritual acts can be found in the numerous examples of worked crania. Sometimes a flint knife is placed between the teeth, like a tongue projecting from a grinning mouth, at other times another knife is inserted into the nasel cavity to create an animated image of death. We do not know wheather these objects were used as masks in rituals, or wheather they were made as symbols of death and sacrifice to be placed in offerings." (See attached photo from the text above, p. 98, ill. 80, of a skull mask with two analogous flint blades such as the example offered here.) The piece offered here was likely cermonial and was votive, but in exactly what context it was used, that is not certain, but whatever the case, the piece offered here is an extremely interesting and rare example of the type. This piece also comes with a custom wooden display stand, and can easily be removed. Ex: Private North Carolina collection, circa 1990's. Ex: H. Rose collection, New York. (Note: Additional documentation is available to the purchaser.) I certify that this piece is authentic as to date, culture, and condition: