The Selene type is without question the rarest of only four Greek deity types in the gold coinage of Kanishka. It represents Hellenistic influence and is testament to the variety of religious beliefs tolerated across the Kushan Empire during Kanishka’s reign. It is believed that Kanishka himself practised both Buddhism and the Zoroastrian cult of Mithra.
This coin presents an extremely desirable companion piece to the Kanishka Helios type, her brother the sun. Extremely fine and of the highest rarity, this coin is believed to be the only example in private hands and is estimated at £25,000-35,000 (US$40,000-60,000) [Lot 3830].
The sale also boasts the first gold coin from the Republic of South Africa, the 1874 Gold Pond. The South African Republic (Zuid Afrikaansche Republiek) had been petitioning for an indigenous coinage since 1853. It was not until 1874 that President Thomas François Burgers (1872-1877) approached the Heaton Mint in Birmingham to begin production.
The mint proposed two designs, 695 ‘fine beard’ coins and 142 ‘coarse beard’ pieces. The Legislators objected to Burgers use of his own profile on the coins and rejected both designs. As a result, Burgers Ponds were sold as mementoes, with many being altered and set into jewellery.
The successful revival of the Pond in 1892 and the conclusion of the Boer War, ignited numismatic interest in the Burgers Pond, but only a tiny number of these coins remain in mint state. This particular example, with the rarer ‘coarse beard’ design remains in choice mint state with full original lustre and an attractive light tone. One of the finest known examples of this very rare variety, it is estimated to achieve £40,000-60,000 (US$65,000-100,000) [Lot 3395].
Also leading the Africa and Indian Ocean section, from Zanzibar, is a Sultan Barghash ibn Sa’id, Gold 2½-Riyals, 1299 AH (1881-1882). The Krause ‘Standard Catalogue of World Coins’ notes that only 2 or 3 of this coin are known to exist. This example is estimated at £40,000-60,000 (US$65,000-100,000) [Lot 3444].
Across the Atlantic Ocean from the United States section is a Panama-Pacific Exposition, Octagonal Gold 50-Dollars. The Panama-Pacific Exposition was a celebration of the completion of the Panama Canal and the 400th anniversary of the discovery of the Pacific Ocean by Spanish explorer, Vasco Núñez de Balboa.
The reverse of this coins bears the Motto ‘E PLURIBUS UNUM’. This Latin phrase meaning ‘one of many’, offered a strong statement of the American determination to form a single nation from many states. ‘E PLURIBUS UNUM’ has also served as a reminder of America’s attempt to seek unity while respecting diversity. This attractive coin is estimated at £25,000-30,000 (US$40,000-50,000) [Lot 3340].
Moving south to the Coins of Central and South America, we have a first Republic, Gold 8-Escudos, 1823, Mo-JM, Mexico city. This example is estimated at £20,000-25,000 [Lot 3149]. At the time, coinage of the Republic of Mexico retained colonial denominations with updated designs that reflected the new political order.
Monetary reforms saw the introduction of the pesos and centavos to replace local denominations. Yet, the fall in silver value that struck worldwide, and the political unrest in Mexico in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, caused a drastic instability in the country’s coinage.
The Mexican revolution between 1913 and 1916 saw a huge variety of coins struck. Due to production under stressed and chaotic circumstances, it is very rare to find pieces in high grade from this period. One such example is an Oaxaca, Gold 60-Pesos, 1916. This well struck example has a light tone and lustre, and is estimated at £12,000-15,000 (US$20,000-25,000) [Lot 3209].
From the period following the breakdown of the Central American Union in 1851, Guatemala, Honduras and Costa Rica took independence over their coinage. Of note from this period is a Honduras, Gold 10-Pesos, 1883, estimated at £15,000-20,000 (US$25,000-35,000) [Lot 3141], a Guatemala Gold 20-Pesos, 1878 F, estimated at £10,000-12,000 (US$15,000-20,000) [Lot 3118] and a Costa Rica, Gold 20-Pesos, estimated at £8,000-12,000 (US$15,000-20,000) [Lot 3080].
This diverse sale also includes a private collection of 128 Crusader Coins of Cyprus. Of note is a Henry I (1218-1253) Base Gold Bezant. The standard Bezant, known as the ‘white Bezant’ was modelled on Byzantine coinage and made of gold, debased with silver. This example with unusually full strike is extremely fine and estimated at £4,000-5,000 (US$6,000-8,000) [Lot 3701].
This auction is part of a two day calendar taking place during Coinex 2014 on the 24-25 September. Baldwin’s will also be offering Auction 90, on Thursday 24 September 2014, featuring The David Sellwood collection of Parthian Coinage. Catalogues is available online at www.baldwin.co.uk
With a history dating back to 1872 Baldwin’s is one of the largest and longest established Numismatic dealers and auction houses in the world. Our dedicated team of specialists have over 300 years combined experience covering all areas of numismatics including English, Ancient and Foreign coins, military and commemorative medals, tokens, books and banknotes.
Launched in 1993 Baldwin’s auction department has grown from strength to strength hosting more than eighteen prestigious international auctions each year in London, New York and Hong Kong. The merger of Baldwin’s with Noble Investments (UK) PLC in 2005, and the acquisition in early 2008 of Apex Philatelics. and of Dreweatts & Bloomsbury Auctions, has seen the company expand to become a formidable market player offering a complete package for any collector of coins, stamps, fine art and collectables. In more recent times (2013), Baldwin’s has become a part of the Stanley Gibbons Group plc and is now a more powerful London Stock Exchange listed collectables retailer and ‘top 5’ UK auctioneer.
Established in 1856, The Stanley Gibbons Group plc is the world’s leading rare stamp and prestige collectibles merchant with offices in the UK, Hong Kong, Singapore and the Channel Islands.
Celebrating 100 years as holders of the Royal Warrant as philatelists and AIM-listed in London.
Estimates do not include buyer’s premium and prices achieved include the hammer price plus buyer’s premium.
Images are available upon request and all catalogues are available to view online at www.baldwin.co.uk.
For More Information about Baldwin’s
Visit us at www.baldwin.co.uk.
Follow us on Twitter @BaldwinsCoins
Find us on Facebook /BaldwinsCoins