5 Portrait coin of Ptolemy I, Macedonian king of Egypt, 323–283 B.C. The obverse image is a realistic portrait of Ptolemy I while the reverse image depicts an eagle, which became associated with the Ptolemies as rulers of Egypt. Ptolemy issued coins with his own portrait beginning in 305 B.C. when he claimed the title of king, an act that was considered by his contemporaries to be the de-facto end of Alexander the Great's empire. Each of the rival generals soon began forming kingdoms of their own and issuing coins with their portraits.