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Connecting to Moments in History

To keep myself connected to this momentous time in history, for years, I have carried a Tyre shekel in my wallet. I know I couldnít prove the shekel I carry is one of the Judas shekels, but, it could be. I know for certain others who lived and worked in the world Judas knew have touched the coin. For me, this direct connection to ancient history is a key fascination I find in owning rare coins.

When holding my Tyre shekel in hand, I canít help musing on where the coin has traveled over time. Whose hands has it passed through? For what purposes has it been employed? I often imagine Julius Caesar tossing my coin to the victorious legionnaires in Gaul as a reward. Other times I see Cleopatra making a gift of it to a favored servant. It is even possible, Judas received it for his historic betrayal. While there is no way to definitively prove any of these possibilities, I am comforted knowing they cannot be disproved either. As the Roman Empire was in its ascendancy, the Tyre shekel was used for all of these purposes and more, so whoís to say.

For years, I had attempted to locate a large collection of quality Judas coins to no avail. Then, several years ago, by fortuitous circumstance I acquired an astonishing cache of over 160 silver Tyre shekels from a private collection. I knew my find was remarkable, because estimates indicate less than 1% of the total Tyre shekels minted over time have even been recovered. So, to find so many at once was a rare experience.

It was electric being in the presence of coins that had traveled through history for more or less 2,000 years. My mind raced as I imagined histories for these numismatic survivors. I wondered if any had been among the thirty pieces Judas accepted from the chief priests. It was a heady experience that energized me for a good while, but it was one I thought would not likely be repeated.

Recently, following a tip from a professional associate, I came upon a sizable private cache of Tyre shekels all in a raw uncertified state. Upon my initial inspection, the new collection appeared even more fabulous than the first one I had encountered years ago and I could hardly contain my excitement. However, in order to confirm exactly what I had acquired, I needed a qualified second opinion. I had them...


Numismatic Guaranty Corporation (NGC) The world's largest rare coin grading services was contracted to guarantee the authenticity of these coins. Upon receipt of these coins, NGC expressed their enthusiasm for the collection. According to NGC, this is the largest group of Phoenician Tetradrachms that they have ever received for certification at one time.

Following examination by their team of experts, each coin was encapsulated within a state-of-the-art, tamper-evident holder made from high quality inert materials. The NGC holder is the ideal environment for long-term storage of these 2,000 year old treasures.

Of course, I was thrilled the coins were genuine and in good condition, but I began to think about the importance of this discovery. It truly is a rare opportunity to come across these coins. Iím a full-time career professional and it has only happened twice to me. Owning even one of these coins places a collector among a very elite group.

Gaius Grachhus elected Roman tribune
Romans cultivate oysters
Romans use waterpower to mill flour
Birth of Julius Caesar, first emperor of Rome
Roman legions destroy Spartacusí slave rebellion
Julius Caesar invades Gaul
Julius Caesar invades Britain
Cleopatra rules Egypt and the Nile
Julius Caesar elected dictator for life &assassinated
Herod the Great made king of Judeaby Romans
Octavian defeats Antony & Cleopatragains rule of Roman Empire
Cleopatra & Marc Antony commit suicide
Octavian named Caesar Augustus by Roman Senate
Jesus Christ born
Saddles first used in Europe
Tiberius succeeds Caesar Augustus as Roman emperor
Pontius Pilate appointed governor
Jesus Christ begins ministry
Jesus crucified
Herod Agrippa appointed king of Judea
Romans begin using soap
Emperor Claudius poisoned by wife, succeeded by Nero
Fire destroys much of Rome
Painting on Canvas discovered
Romans Destroy Jerusalem