SHIMON BAR KOKHBA, “ELEAZAR” AE
Mildenberg 147, Hendin 1380, Extremely Fine, 20.5mm, 6.12 grams, Dated year one 132/133 C.E.
Obverse: Cluster of grapes on vine branch with small leaf, "Year one of the redemption of Israel" in Paleo-Hebrew around
Reverse: Seven-branched palm tree with two bunches of dates, ELEAZAR HAKOHEN (Eleazar the Priest) in retrograde across fields
A SCARCE bronze for Bar Kochba. Extraordinarily SHARP, especially the cluster of grapes! Somewhat off-center but still FULL legends.
Eleazar was long thought to be an important figure in the administration of Bar Kokhba, and was expected to become the high priest. Some scholars speculate that it was Rabbi Eleazar HaModai who was later killed by Bar Kokhba after having been framed as a conspirator. Recently, David Hendin has published a paper suggesting that the coin refers to Eleazar the High Priest who was instrumental in conquering Judaea with Joshua a millenium earlier.