Obverse laureate head of Melqart right, lion's skin knotted around neck; reverse TYPOY IEPAS KAI ASULOY (of Tyre the holy and inviolable), eagle left, r. The reverse again showed an eagle standing left on a ship ram, symbol for the harbour city Tyre. 7 Very crude half shekel minted between 18 BCE and 68 CE. In the last stage, from 18 BCE onwards, a very crude series was minted, partly with very worn dies (fig. It has been suggested by Meshorer these coins have been minted in Jerusalem, but this suggestion is not generally supported. Because the obverse die did not show a date, they could be reused next year. And analysis of the silver of the new coinage of Antioch indicated that they were (partly) minted from old Tyrian silver coins.
foot on ship's ram, palm frond behind, date VI (year 6) over club and palm frond left, ZB r., Phoenician letter nun between legs. Also the club at the left side of the eagle was continued. Marian and Sermarini remarked in their analysis of the Temple tax Hoard, that obverse dies of these crude coins in many cases were much better and close to the style of the contemporary coins of Tyre. And Forum Ancient Coins recently offered two unprovenanced half shekels with new minting years. Here an interesting example is offered by two unprovenanced half shekels of year 31 (96/95 BCE) and 47 (80/79 BCE) sold by Forum Ancient Coins (fig 11). Obverse AUTOKR KAIC NER TRAIANOC ARI CEB GERM DAK PARQ, laureate head of Trajan right; reverse DHMARX EX KA UPAT V (regnal year 21, 6 times Consul), eagle standing facing on a club, wings spread, head left, palm-branch on right. As a result, within a few years the Neronian coins replaced the Tyrian shekels. Much more short lived was the minting of Jewish shekels in Jerusalem during the Jewish war (fig 20).
By Tom Buijtendorp The Tyrian shekels have been minted during almost two centuries and are well known as the coin for the annual temple tax, and the silver pieces paid to Judas. The Tyrian (half) shekels in general Fig 1 Early tetradrachm of Tyre of Ptolemy II Philadelphos (285 - 246 BCE), minted in 277-276 BCE in Tyre. Obverse diademed and draped bust right; reverse BASILEWS DHMHTRIOU, eagle standing left on ship ram, palm frond under wing, A/PE / TYP monogram on club left, AVS monogram / IPR (year 187) right, GHP monogram between leg. This was still the type about one and half century later. Early Tyrian shekel with reverse double-struck, minted in 107-106 BCE. The head of the ruler was replaced by the laureate head of the city god Melqart facing right, continuing the beautiful style. After a few years, the style of the Tyrian shekels deteriorated with a more crude portrait (fig 5). As a result, sometimes small cuts were used to test whether a coins was of pure silver (fig 16). Tetradrachm of Caracalla minted in Tyre in 213-217 CE. Although the silver content was much lower, these coins formally were of the same value as the shekels, as the comparable look suggested (fig 17).
Obverse diademed head of Ptolemy I right wearing aegis; reverse PTOLEMAIOU BASILEWS, eagle standing left on thunderbolt, Z ( year 7; Z takes a form similar to I, or H on its side) over club left; struck with a sculptural high-relief obverse die. Examples are the last tetradrachms of the Seleukid ruler Demetrius II Nikator (146 - 136 and 129 - 125 BCE) minted in 126-126 BCE, just before he was murdered and Tyre gained autonomy (fig 2). 3 Early autonomous shekel minted in year six (111-110 BCE) of the new year count, in the beautiful style of the first autonomous shekels. Like the former tetradrachms, there was no obverse legend. A brief revival in style followed (fig 6), after which the coins become more crude again. In low volume years, there would be only one or a few obverse dies needed. Obverse AVT KAI AN-TWNINOC CE, laureate head right; reverse DHMAPX EX YPATOCTOD, eagle standing facing on club, wings spread, tail and head left, wreath in beak, murex shell between legs. At the same time, the production of Tyrian shekels continued at a much lower volume.
At least one coin in the collection (number 33, dated Year 154 / AD 28-29), is thought to be unique.