A rare ancient Greek coin fetched a record-breaking six million dollars at an auction held on May 19 at the Numismatica Ars Classica auction house in Zurich.
The 2,400-year-old gold stater, minted around 340–25 B.C.E., was bought by a private collector, Artnet Magazine reported.
Known as a Panticapaeum stater, after the ancient Greek city in modern-day Crimea, it features a wide-eyed satyr on the obverse and that of a griffin gripping a spear in its beak on the reverse.
The high price is attributed to the coin’s quality, rarity, and the fact the supply of similar specimens is extremely limited.
Artnet said the coin was part of the State Hermitage Museum’s collection, but was sold off in 1934 as part of Stalin’s push to sell works of art to raise foreign currency to fund domestic industrial growth. It was acquired by Charles Gillet, a French industrialist.