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A fine Ancient Greek silver drachm, featuring to the obverse the depiction of a young Herakles, portrayed in profile wearing the Nemean lion’ skin headdress. The reverse displays the Greek god Zeus Aëtophoros portrayed bare chested and regally seated on a throne with one leg behind the other. Zeus can be seen holding a large eagle and a long sceptre, and under his throne a monogram can be observed. The deity is flanked to the right side by Greek letters forming the word ΦIΛIΠΠOY, meaning Of Philip. The coin has been struck under Philip III Arrhidaeos, mint of Magnesia.
During the reign of Alexander the Great it became common for his coins to be minted depicting the mythical hero Herakles. Following the death of Alexander in 323 BC the portrait of Herakles style was continually minted during the rule of his numerous successors (commonly his generals), and it took almost two decades for his successors to feel secure enough to have the coinage printed with their names. Philip III Arrhidaeos, the elder half brother of Alexander the Great , was one of the successors to Alexander and reigned as King of Macedon from 323 BC, eventually sharing the throne with Alexander’s son, Alexander IV, who was born shortly after his death. After only six years of rule and dynastic infighting, Philip was executed by Olympia, the mother of Alexander the Great in 317 BC.