Author Topic: Powerful data base of Seleucid coins  (Read 102 times)

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Online Figleaf

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Powerful data base of Seleucid coins
« on: April 20, 2019, 11:14:42 AM »
ANS has put online a collection of 2520 Seleucid coins. It has turned the collection into a powerful data base by creating a number of filters. I was able to create a list of coins from the Bactra mint and sort it by date in seconds. What makes the data base even more fun is that  you can make a map of the mints of the coins on your list.

Obviously, more is better. I would like to see weight and metal composition added as filters as well as tools to create charts and calculate simple statistical values like average, median and standard deviation. I would also like ANS to make the software available to third parties. Nevertheless, this is already a great tool for fast research and it can only get better.

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

Offline THCoins

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Re: Powerful data base of Seleucid coins
« Reply #1 on: April 20, 2019, 03:35:29 PM »
Agree, this is a great tool. It has been on-line for some time already, but seems to have had an update.
In essence the site is the online version of the standard Seleukid coins catalog of Houghton and Lorber.

Offline EWC

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Re: Powerful data base of Seleucid coins
« Reply #2 on: April 22, 2019, 12:04:02 PM »
Yes - excellent

Compare that with the London Petrie Museum web catalogue:

http://petriecat.museums.ucl.ac.uk/detail.aspx

put "weight" in the search box - there seem to be 6,000 weights (Petrie himself collected about 4,000 ancient and medieval weights)

Pick out any at random - what do you get - a nice picture and the size in mm.  But (almost every time) not the weight!

Petrie collected these specifically in order to investigate weight standards but it apparently never occurred to  the modern archaeologists at UCL that the weight of the weights might be of  interest................

One might think that using Petrie's 1920's catalogue one could find the weight of any of his weights - and so read the web pic weight from there.  But no.  Everything got new reference numbers for the web site, and they were not cross referenced to his book!  (If by chance the photo shows Petrie’s ink number you can do it, but that is a kind of accident).

Sigh.

Rob T


Online Figleaf

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Re: Powerful data base of Seleucid coins
« Reply #3 on: April 22, 2019, 12:43:02 PM »
You are quite right about weights. I even run into this problem for modern tokens! Since quite a few are used in machines that often weigh the tokens, the weight would be of interest. Diameter does not seem such a problem for cataloguers, but weights are more often than not missing.

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

Offline EWC

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Re: Powerful data base of Seleucid coins
« Reply #4 on: April 22, 2019, 01:08:22 PM »
There is a particular type of quite scarce lead weight found in England.  It’s a sort of crude truncated pyramid, with a cross and pellets on the flat top.

I think, (as do others), they may have been a bullion weights for collecting taxes, in sterling pennies, in the early Norman period.

This seems rather important, maybe even to Robin Hood followers, as there is an idea that one of the bad things that such as bad King John perhaps did was to pay in light sterling pounds by count, but collect in heavy troy pounds by weight.

I once went through all the medieval weights reported to UK PAS to look for such items.  There was only one in nice condition

As I recall the reporting archaeologist wrote about it something like 

“Sorry - my scale only went up to 250g - so could not weight it.........”

Sometime I even think the archaeologists are in league with bad King John (joke)

Rob T


Online Figleaf

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Re: Powerful data base of Seleucid coins
« Reply #5 on: April 22, 2019, 01:19:00 PM »
Very interesting. I have a vague memory of seeing an object such as you describe in a museum exhibition. However, I have seen so many exhibitions that the detail of where I saw it are lost. One approach may be to check paintings of tax collectors. They were popular subjects for painters. There is an example here, but there are no tools visible.

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.