Saturday, June 03, 2006

The Aitna tetradrachm

The Israel Museum has put a beautiful 50 page booklet online. The Coin of Coins: A World Permiere was their exhibition of the Aitna (Aetna) tetradrachm. This unique coin is believed to be the world's most valuable. No one knows how much it would bring on today's market; Lucien de Hirsch bought it for 8,000 Belgian francs in 1882.

After Hirsch's death the coin was given to the royal library of Belgium. The Belgians never bothered to exhibit it, so the Israel Museum's exhibition was the world premiere.


RJO said...

Here's a good story for you. Maybe this fellow could put all the casts online and we could see if any of us have the coins in question.

Ed Snible said...

It would be nice to have the casts online. I have also heard that the casts for Mionnet's famous 9,000-page catalog have been found and someone is trying to publish them, but that work is going slowly.

Its too bad publishing well is expensive an the folks who have the good stuff seem uninterested in publishing on-the-cheap.