c.4th Century BC PONTUS, AMISUS AR Siglos NGC AU55
Samsun, once known as Amisus, is the ancient port-city located on the edge of the Black Sea, in the Roman province of Pontus. It was situated on the north of the trans-Anatolian highway that ran from the Mediterranean to the Black sea. The estimated population of the city around 150 CE is between 20,000-25,000 people, classifying it as a relatively large city for that time. The city functioned as the commercial capital for the province of Pontus; beating its rival Sinope (now Sinop) due to is position at the head of the trans-Anatolia highway. Before Amisus was settled by the Milesians in the 6th century BCE, it is believed that there was much Greek activity along the coast of the Black Sea predating the fragmentary archeological evidence of that time. The only archaeological evidence we have as early as the 6th century is fragment of wild goat style Greek pottery, housed at the Louvre. In the 5th century BC, Amisus became a free state after it was conquered by the Athenians. It was then renamed Peiraeus under Pericles. In the 1st century BC Mithridates VI of Pontus- the Greek King of Pontus- was conquered by the Romans under Lucullus. Pliny the Younger's address to the Emperor Trajan in the 1st century CE "By your indulgence, sir, they have the benefit of their own laws," is interpreted by John Boyle Orrery to indicate that the freedoms won for those in Pontus by the Romans was not pure freedom and depended on the generosity of the Roman emperor. Around 46 BC, during the reign of Julius Cesar, Amisus became the capital of Roman Pontus. Superb eye appeal With Hera on the obverse and an owl on the reverse. Check out all the great US Coins, Ancients, Paper Money, World and Exonumia at Sarasota Numismatics.
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