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Tetradrachm (Coin) Portraying King Antiochus III The Great

A work made of silver.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of silver.

Date:

223/187 BCE

Artist:

Greek; probably minted in Antioch (near modern Antakya, Turkey)

About this artwork

The Hellenistic period spans the nearly three hundred years between the death of Alexander the Great of Macedonia (323 BC) and that of Cleopatra VII of Egypt (30 BC), a descendant of one of Alexander’s generals. The term Hellenistic is derived from Hellas, an ancient Greek word for Greece. It is used to describe both chronologically and culturally the era following Alexander’s conquest of Egypt and Asia, which resulted in the spread of Greek culture across a vast area. The melding of local and Greek artistic styles with the luxurious materials captured in the conquered lands resulted in magnificent artwork, including elegant coinage.

Following Alexander’s death, his empire was divided among his generals, who established independent kingdoms in Egypt; Persia; the eastern coast of the Aegean Sea, including Syria and Palestine; Greece and Macedonia; and Thrace. Almost immediately the generals began to covet each other’s land and power.

Like his predecessors, Antiochos III (reigned 223–187 BC) spent his reign trying to fold stray territories back into the original Seleucid empire. His efforts pitted him against other descendants of Alexander’s generals.
Antiochos was so preoccupied with his territorial squabbles that he overlooked the new regional power—Rome.

On View

Ancient and Byzantine Art, Gallery 151

Artist

Ancient Greek

Title

Tetradrachm (Coin) Portraying King Antiochus III The Great

Origin

Ancient Near East

Date

223 BCE–187 BCE

Medium

Silver

Dimensions

Diam. 2.9 cm; 16.43 g

Credit Line

Gift of William F. Dunham

Reference Number

1920.727

Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email . Information about image downloads and licensing is available here.

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