Even amid some concerns regarding cultural patrimony laws that could impact how U.S. collectors buy and sell ancient coins, the ancient coin market “remains robust,” according to David Vagi, co-ordinator of Numismatic Guaranty Corp.’s (NGC) Ancients Program.
In a recent market analysis, Vagi highlighted an ancient Greek silver coin sold at Heritage Auction’s April 14-19 sale of world and ancient coins. The Pegasus silver stater of Syracuse (317-289 B.C.) is graded Choice About Uncirculated “Fine Style” and realized $1,997.50 ($2,570.80 Cdn.).
Vagi said the NGC Ancients Program, which assists buyers in grading and authenticating ancient coins, will note “when coins are of Fine Style, such as on this Sicilian silver stater from Syracuse, struck under Agathocles as King of Sicily between 317 to 289 B.C.”
While coins of a “superior style” are designated “Fine Style” by NGC, Vagi added an ancient coin’s style could be further defined as the aesthetic impact of its composition and engraving.
“This example received a 5/5 for strike and a 3/5 for surfaces. The primary considerations for surface quality are luster, corrosion, porosity, encrustation, silvering, cleaning, marks, hairlines and scratches,” wrote Vagi. “NGC adds, ‘Factors contributing to the analysis of Surface may be segregated according to the three main phases of an ancient coin’s ‘life’: circulation; use, burial and recovery; and conservation.’”