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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Greek Coins| ▸ |Geographic - All Periods| ▸ |Thrace & Moesia| ▸ |Apollonia Pontica||View Options:  |  |  | 

Apollonia Pontica, Thrace

Apollonia Pontica was founded as Antheia by Greek colonists from Miletus in the 7th century B.C. They soon changed its name to Apollonia after building a temple for Apollo. The temple contained a colossal statue of Apollo by Calamis, which was later taken to Rome and placed in the Capitol. The anchor on the coinage is evidence of the importance of its maritime trade.


Four Rings, Celtic Ring Money, Black Sea Region, c. 800 - 100 B.C.

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Ring money of bronze, of silver, and of gold was used by the Celts in trade from Ireland to the Danube region. The dating of Celtic ring money is uncertain. Some authorities date the use of ring money from as early as 800 B.C. and it may have been used as late as 100 B.C. Some believe the bronze rings are actually just strap fittings, not a trade currency. Bronze rings are, however, sometimes found in quite large hoards and, in Spain, they are sometimes found with silver bar and disk ingots, and with 2nd century B.C. denarii of the Roman Republic. Undoubtedly they were used as fittings but they were also undoubtedly used as a store of wealth and for trade.
LT87186. Bronze Ring Money, 4 rings, VF, nice patinas, some chipping on nubs of large ring, asymmetrical - varying thickness, not all knobs and nubs evenly spaced, (1x) Victoor -, Topalov Apollonia -, Burgos -, 4 knobs each ornamented with three nubs, 31.858g, 64mm, very large and extremely rare; (1x) Topalov Apollonia p. 93, XII.0, small cylindrical ring with three rings of knobs, 8.746g, 15mm diameter, 13mm long, scarce; (1x) Topalov Apollonia I p. 95, V.0, 3 groups of 2 globules, 3.073g, 26mm; (1x) cf. Topalov Apollonia I p. 90, VIII.0 (all symmetrical), 4 globules unevenly spaced, 3.725g, 22mm; $160.00 (Ä140.80)


Apollonia Pontika, Thrace, 450 - 390 B.C.

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Apollonia Pontica was founded as Antheia by Greek colonists from Miletus in the 7th century B.C. They soon changed its name to Apollonia after building a temple for Apollo. The temple contained a colossal statue of Apollo by Calamis, which was later taken to Rome and placed in the Capitol. The anchor on the coinage is evidence of the importance of its maritime trade.
MA93676. Silver drachm, Topalov Apollonia p. 348, 9; and p. 588 45; SNG BM Black Sea 160; SNG Stancomb 37; SNG Cop 457; HGC 3.2 1324, aF, toned, centered, porous, small edge split, weight 3.203 g, maximum diameter 15.2 mm, die axis 225o, Apollonia Pontica (Sozopol, Bulgaria) mint, 450 - 404/390 B.C.; obverse Attic style gorgoneion (facing head of Medusa), human hair, wearing taenia, snakes around, tongue protruding; reverse upside-down anchor, A left, crayfish right; scarce; $32.00 (Ä28.16)


Apollonia Pontika, Thrace, c. 450 - 390 B.C.

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Homer wrote about the Gorgon on four occasions, but only about the head, as if the creature had no body. Up to the 5th century B.C., the head depicted was very ugly, with her tongue sticking out, boar tusks, puffy cheeks, her eyeballs staring straight ahead and the snakes twisting all around her. The direct frontal stare was highly unusual in ancient Greek art. In some cases a beard, (probably representing streaks of blood) was added to her chin, making her appear as a wild. Gorgoneia painted on the shields of warriors on mid-5th century Greek vases, however, are not as ugly, strange or frightening. By that time, the Gorgon had lost her tusks and the snakes were rather stylized. The Hellenistic marble known as the Medusa Rondanini shows how the Gorgon changed over time into a beautiful woman..Medusa Rondanini
MA93679. Silver drachm, Topalov Apollonia p. 586, 41; SNG BM 153; SNG Cop 454; HGC 3.2 1324, weight 3.324 g, maximum diameter 15.8 mm, Apollonia Pontica (Sozopol, Bulgaria) mint, c. 450 - 404/390 B.C.; obverse Attic style gorgoneion (facing head of Medusa), large cheeks, rows of curls to brow, wide nose, protruding tongue; reverse anchor flukes up, crayfish and A below; $22.00 (Ä19.36)


Dyrrhachion, Illyria, Greece, Roman Protectorate, c. 229 - 30 B.C.

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This type circulated alongside, and presumably at parity with, Roman Republican denarii. BMC calls the figure on the right side of the obverse a statue. Ceka identifies it as a female. The figure can be identified as Harpokrates by the a hem-hem crown and right index finger up to the lips.
MA93701. Silver drachm, Ceka 325 corr., BMC Thessaly p. 71, 94, weight 2.463 g, maximum diameter 17.0 mm, Dyrrhachium (DurrŽs, Albania) mint, obverse MENIΣKOΣ, cow right, head turned back toward suckling calf left; on right: Harpokrates standing facing wearing hemhem crown, finger to lips; reverse ∆YP − ΛY−KIΣ−KOY, double stellate pattern within double linear square with sides curved inward; $21.74 (Ä19.13)







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REFERENCES|

Corpus Nummorum Thracorum - http://www.corpus-nummorum.eu/
Hoover, O. The Handbook of Greek Coinage Series, Vol. 3 - Handbook of Coins of Macedon and Its Neighbors. Part II: Thrace, Skythia, and Taurike, Sixth to First Centuries BC. (Lancaster, 2017).
Imhoof-Blumer, F. Monnaies Grecques. (Amsterdam, 1883).
Naville Co. Monnaies grecques antiques S. Pozzi. Auction 1. (4 April 1921, Geneva).
Sear, D. Greek Coins and Their Values, Vol. 1: Europe. (London, 1978).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Denmark, The Royal Collection of Coins and Medals, Danish National Museum, Vol. 2: Macedonia and Thrace. (West Milford, NJ, 1982).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Great Britain IX, British Museum, Part 1: The Black Sea. (London, 1993).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Great Britain XI, The William Stancomb Collection of Coins of the Black Sea Region. (Oxford, 2000).
Topalov, S. Apollonia Pontica, Contribution to the Study of the Coin Minting of the City 6th - 1st c. B.C. (Sofia, 2007).
Victoor, R. Roulles Celtes et Objets Assimilťs. (RosendaŽl-lez-Dunkerque, 1989).
Wroth, W. A Catalog of the Greek Coins in the British Museum, Mysia. (London, 1892).

Catalog current as of Friday, December 6, 2019.
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Apollonia Pontica