Peter Tompa (Washington lobbyist and coin collector) has been pressing me --- "anxiously" --- to comment on the acquisition of a dekadrachm by a national numismatic museum. The prompt was certainly an interesting one and it brought me directly to a letter signed by Tompa (and posted on the Ancient Coin Collectors Guild (ACCG) website). The communication, sent from Dillingham & Murphy LLP, was addressed to the Cultural Property Advisory Committee (February 1, 2007) and related to the 'Request for Import Restrictions on Coins at the Behest of the Republic of Cyprus'.
In the letter Tompa comments on the movement of ancient coins and specifically those minted on Cyprus. In note 10 he observes that Athenian dekadrachms are not found in Greece. He then slips in an allegation about a recently acquired dekadrachm "which is thought to have been found in Turkey". Unlike the rest of the material in his letter such a comment is unsupported.
Who "thought" that this coin was found in Turkey? What are Tompa's documented sources for his information? What is his due diligence process? Does he know which (coin) dealers handled the dekadrachm? Will he confirm that that the dealer(s) is / are not linked in any way with the FOIA request relating to coins from Cyprus?
Such questions need to be asked because Tompa's "postings" sometimes need to be seen in context.
Tompa urges me to make an instant comment.
But it made me stop and think: Tompa and I have something in common. We both value empirical evidence.
So what is the basis of his allegation?