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The Importance of the Lydian Stater as the World's First Coin

The Importance of the Lydian Stater as the World's First Coin


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The Lydian Stater was the official coin of the Lydian Empire, introduced before the kingdom fell to the Persian Empire. The earliest staters are believed to date to around the second half of the 7th century BCE, during the reign of King Alyattes (r. 619-560 BCE). According to a consensus of numismatic historians, the Lydian stater was the first coin officially issued by a government in world history and was the model for virtually all subsequent coinage.

Background on Ancient Commerce

Chiefly, in order for a coin to be legitimately considered such, it must clearly be issued by a governing authority. This distinguishes coins from tokens, barter items, and other limited forms of money. Though there are no requirements that a coin be made of metal, this is largely unavoidable for the coin to function as money (as a unit of account, an intermediary of exchange, and a store of value), as it must be portable, non-perishable, difficult to counterfeit, and confer value (whether intrinsically or by decree). Nineteenth-century historian Barclay V. Head observed that “the precious metals had long . commended themselves to the civilized peoples of the East as being the measure of value least liable to fluctuation, most compact in volume, and most directly convertible.”

Gold and silver were used as currency, as a means of facilitating commercial exchange, long before the first coins arose. Rings or ingots (bars) of precious metal were used by travelers and traders across the ancient world, but they had to be weighed and verified each time a transaction took place in order to reckon their value in trade. Coins, with their standardized weights, eliminated this time-consuming problem, rendering them a more efficient and expedient conduit of commerce.

It is fitting, and worth observing, that the Lydians engendered a mercantile culture; Herodotus acclaimed them (with exaggeration) as the world's first merchants, as they earned a reputation for being important interlocutors between East and West. In his monograph The Coinage of Lydia and Persia, Barclay Head noted “the spirit of commercial activity which the natives of Lydia possessed,” while another 19th-century historian, Ernst R. Curtius, compared their knack for playing middlemen to that of the Phoenicians: "The Lydians became on land what the Phoenicians were by sea, the mediators between Hellas [Greece] and Asia." With its strategic territorial expansion near the Bosporus and Hellespont (now the Dardanelles Strait), which effectively connect the Black Sea to the Aegean Sea, it is no surprise that the Lydian Empire of the late 7th - early 6th century BCE would be home to a thriving mercantile tradition. The Lydians even gave special status to merchants within their society: they were known as agoraios, or “People of the Market,” and enjoyed a higher rank than commoners in the social hierarchy.

It is, however, unclear that the earliest staters of Lydia actually circulated in commercial exchange. In archaeological sites near Sardis, for instance, there are no staters found in the ruins of shops and marketplaces. One would expect to find them here if they were spent as money within the kingdom. More likely, these coins were hoarded by the king and the wealthy, perhaps issued for the collection of taxes, and used in long-distance trade between Lydia and its neighbors, as many staters have been recovered from Ionian temples.

A Note About Historical Consensus

There are, however, competing historical theories about the first government-issued coins arising earlier in Greece, India, or China. In the latter two cases, most historians have concluded that although coinage likely sprung up in China and India independently from Lydia, the evidence suggests that these developments took place after the introduction of the stater. The case for Greece seems to owe itself largely to the Western bias of more contemporary historians. Nonetheless, it reveals that the true genesis of coins as money remains a disputed topic of historical inquiry.

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Composition & Appearance of Lydian Coins

The Lydian stater was composed of electrum, a naturally-occurring gold-silver alloy; though the coins are often reported to be struck from this naturally-occurring alloy, they were actually made from a specific and rather consistent mix of approximately 55% gold, 45% silver, and a small balance of copper. This indicates that silver and copper were added to natural electrum in order to achieve a more durable and balanced metal alloy. Although the extra copper slightly debased the coin's intrinsic value, it allowed it to exhibit a golden hue, unlike the pale white-gold color of pure electrum.

There do exist cruder pieces struck in electrum that possibly predate the stater. These first electrum “pre-coins” were blank, bearing no emblem that tied them to an issuing authority. They sometimes featured striations on one side of the flan, which historians have speculated may harken to the electrum-rich Pactolus River that supplied the raw materials for these pieces. (The Pactolus was said to have acquired its metallic abundance when King Midas of nearby Phrygia bathed in its waters to remove his curse of the “golden touch.”) It appears, however, that many of the Asiatic Greek cultures — especially in Miletus (or Miletos) and Ionia, along the Aegean coast — were using, or perhaps experimenting with, these electrum blanks contemporaneously with the Lydians. It is the administrative innovations of Alyattes and his son Croesus (or Kroisos) which set the Lydian staters apart.

For numismatists and numismatic historians, the importance of Lydian coinage is the novel idea that striking or stamping a piece of precious metal with a “State seal” of sorts could confer official status on it as money, indicating the State's willingness to accept the piece as payment. This is the crucial feature that distinguishes Lydian staters from preceding forms of money and connects them to all subsequent coins.

Staters came in somewhat irregular shapes, many of them ovular or bean-shaped, but had a fairly consistent weight of 220 grains of wheat. (This measure is somewhat complicated by the variance between the wheat grains, barleycorns, and carob seeds that formed the basis for different weight standards in antiquity.) This weight is what defined a “stater.” In fact, all ancient coin “units” or denominations — such as shekels, drachms, and the like — were expressions of units of weight rather than a specific value. The term “stater,” for instance, was used generically around ancient Greece to mean “that which balances scales.”

The coins were minted in Sardis (or Sardes), the Lydian capital, with an unmistakable design that represented the city: the foreparts of a lion (on the left) and a bull (on the right) facing one another. Smaller varieties only use the right-facing lion protome with a small sunburst above that many modern observers mistook for a “nose wart.” The image was created by a punch, as evidenced by the two incuse squares located on the reverse of the coin. This design is of crucial importance, not only in its Assyrian symbolism, but also for its identifying presence. The use of the “Lydian Lion” hallmark showed that these coins were official tender of the king in his kingdom, an idea that we do not see employed in the ancient world prior to Lydia. Rather quickly, however, other kingdoms and empires adopted the same seigniorage scheme as Alyattes had, and Croesus built upon after him.

The most common fractional coin within this system was the third-stater, or trite, which — just as it sounds — was one-third the weight of the stater. Some sources have surmised that the value of a third-stater amounted to a month's subsistence; others have placed its monetary worth somewhat lower. In addition to thirds, there were also sixth-staters, twelfth-staters, as well as staters in fractions of 1/24, 1/48, and 1/96.

Following the success of the Lydian stater, many of the surrounding cultures of Anatolia and Hellas began to imitate the Lydian model, issuing for circulation their own electrum coins stamped with the respective city-state's hallmark, or some identifying emblem. After Croesus introduced the first bi-metallic coin standard, with highly pure gold and silver coins, the Greeks capitalized upon the notion and adapted their own system of silver coinage based on the drachm. It is most likely the Greek Ionians who took the Lydian invention of the coin and applied it to the retail market with its smaller silver coins.

Legacy of the Lydian Stater

As mentioned above, King Croesus (r. 560-547 BCE), Alyattes' successor, decided to improve upon the electrum coin by introducing highly pure gold and silver staters. These coins had the advantage of a more definite intrinsic value of their underlying metals, whereas electrum's worth was more difficult to calculate due to the mix of metals.

While serving as viceroy for his father Alyattes in the northwestern part of the Lydian Empire, Croesus undoubtedly observed the spread of gold pre-coins coming from the eastern kingdoms of Media and Babylonia. It is believed that this experience enlightened him to the potential that a circulating gold stater had to increase the influence and power of Lydia overseas, especially with her Greek trading partners. Although there is some dispute about this coinage reform taking place late under Alyattes' reign rather than under Croesus', historical consensus ascribes the development to Croesus, even classifying the staters of this period as croesid.

The new gold and silver creosid coins replaced the electrum issues. They were still broken into the same fractional denominations, though the new gold staters weighed 126 grains and the silver staters weighed 168 grains. In this manner, a convenient exchange rate of ten silver staters to one gold stater was retained. The importance of this exchange standard should not be overlooked, as it reveals that Croesus took great care to produce coinage that could be used internationally. Minting coins with a familiar and uniform exchange rate—giving them an international character—contributed to the expansion of Lydia's imperial reach, especially by the time of Croesus when the territories on the west coast of Asia Minor had (for the most part, peacefully) been incorporated into the Lydian Empire as vassal states.

At the height of Lydia's power in the middle of the 6th century BCE, King Croesus is said to have sought the Oracle at Delphi and asked what would come of a war with Cyrus the Great of Persia. The Oracle replied that a great empire would be destroyed. Though Croesus assumed this referred to the Persian Empire, the premonition proved ironically true about his own empire, which was conquered by the invading Persians.

Even after Lydia (and the entirety of its dominion) was incorporated into the Persian Empire, the croesid coinage remained in use for some time. Such a large number of gold and silver staters of the Lydian type have been found that date from after the fall of Croesus, in fact, that many numismatic historians believe the new Persian governors of Anatolia continued to strike unaltered coinage from the same dies at the Sardis Mint for some time.

After the Lydian stater, no gold coin of the ancient world enjoyed quite the same diffusion and recognition until the gold daric issued by Darius the Great of Persia emerged shortly before the beginning of the 5th century BCE. Among both people of antiquity and contemporary numismatists, the daric acquired the nickname “Archer” for bearing the image of the warrior king holding a bow and arrow. Nonetheless, the electrum, gold, and silver staters of Lydia are without comparison in any discussion on the origin of coins.


The First Gold Coin

As far as our knowledge goes from the discoveries as well as intensive research that has been made by historians and archeologists it is said that the Turks were the first to invent an actual currency whish presents real monetary value. It has been said that many traders before the first gold coin would just trade in either gold or silver nuggets by assuming their weight and comparing it to the value of the goods they were selling.

The creation of such a coin is referred back even before the Iron Age Anatolia of the 6th century BC credited by the Kingdom of Lydia or what we call now Turkey. The invention was much needed in order to offer better trading as well as enhance the ease of making trades and with the Kingdom of Lydia being the wealthiest at the time (gold wise) they decided to make a staple which would represent a currency of an exact amount of gold.

This coin was made up of electrum which is a natural mix of 44% silver and 56% gold which was said to be found in abundance within the local rivers. The first real gold coin is said to be in the 5th century BC, however, based on discoveries in ancient temples, it seems that even if these coins have been produced in the 5th century BCthey would not be used in commerce until the beginning of the 6th century BC.

Some historians even state that these gold coins have not been really used as coins at first but in some cases as ritual objects or even medals and badges. Even if each coin would have presented the same value, their weight would differ from 17 grams to even 12 grams and in this case, so would their shape. As presented by the first coin above, the shape would not be of an exact circle but quite edgy.

What was very important with these coins was the insignia on them, the lion attacking the bull is a symbol of royalty as the Kingdom of Lydia was very powerful especially during the ruling of king Croesus during 561BC to 547BC. As gold has always played a vital part in the monetary system of the world it was in a way expected that future currencies would be made up of gold or other valuable metals.

At the same time, it is imperative to remember that the times where very different and the population of the world was much smaller. Not only that but also the fact that the percentage of rich people was so much smaller than what we are seeing today, as most people would either be soldiers or peasants which meant that they would not see much gold in their lives, especially the peasants which would just live of the land.

At the beginning of the 7th century BC, such gold coin currency would become quite famous around the world, therefore, it’s used was implemented by most nations and traders around the world. A large minority of historians still argue to this day that the first gold coin could date back to an even earlier period by stating that it’s using has not been popular as it was only used in more secluded areas that have been wiped from this earth.


The Importance of the Lydian Stater as the World’s First Coin

The Lydian Stater was the official coin of the Lydian Empire, introduced before the kingdom fell to the Persian Empire. The earliest staters are believed to date to around the second half of the 7th century BCE, during the reign of King Alyattes (r.

619-560 BCE). According to a consensus of numismatic historians, the Lydian stater was the first coin officially issued by a government in world history and was the model for virtually all subsequent coinage.

Chiefly, in order for a coin to be legitimately considered such, it must clearly be issued by a governing authority. This distinguishes coins from tokens, barter items, and other limited forms of money.

Though there are no requirements that a coin be made of metal, this is largely unavoidable for the coin to function as money (as a unit of account, an intermediary of exchange, and a store of value), as it must be portable, non-perishable, difficult to counterfeit, and confer value (whether intrinsically or by decree). Nineteenth-century historian Barclay V. Head observed that “the precious metals had long .


Composition

The new gold and silver staters were made to be as pure as possible. Coins at that time were measurable in terms of weight, as opposed to value. The gold stater weighed 126 grains or grains of wheat. The silver stater weighed 168 grains. This was a deliberate choice on Croesus&rsquos part. It is because he wanted to create a consistent exchange rate between the gold and silver versions of his coins. A gold stater was worth exactly ten silver staters. Also, this clean exchange between the two metals helped the stater&rsquos adoption. Basically, as a regional currency in the ancient Aegean world.

The Lion and The Bull

The shape of a Lydian stater didn&rsquot match the flat, circular piece of metal we generally think of as a coin shape. In fact, the shape wasn&rsquot regular at all. Staters usually had a semi-flattened, blob-like form that resembled a range from oval to bean-shaped. The exact shape didn&rsquot matter because the coin&rsquos value was based on weight, not presentation. It was because the stamp was a far more important visual element than its shape.

Lydian staters were decorated with the image of a lion squaring off against a bull. This was a long-standing motif in the ancient world, but Lydian kings adopted it as their sigil. Also, by stamping it on their coinage, they established an indelible connection between the stater and their kingdom. This wasn&rsquot something that had been done before, and it afforded the stater a level of credibility unsurpassed in ancient history. It was the combination of the Lydian state seal and the pure, precise composition of the metals in the coins, along with a simple exchange rate that allowed the Lydian stater to dominate trade in Western Asia Minor for decades.

About

Mr. Rory Brown is a Managing Partner of Nicklaus Brown & Co., the Chairman of Goods & Services, Nearshore Technology Company, and a member of the board of directors of Desano. Mr. Brown has focused on financial technology and investment management over the course of his career. He was a Founder and Chairman of one of the first Internet Banks, a Founder and Chairman of a $50 billion investment management platform, and the Chairman of a Registered Investment Advisor focused on high net worth individuals and families. Mr. Brown was named Financial Services Entrepreneur of the Year by Ernst & Young and has been a founder of multiple companies that have been included in the INC 500. Mr. Brown received a Master of Business Administration from the University of Charleston and is a Certified Public Accountant.He is passionate about delving into the history of money and how our modern currency has evolved into what it is today. In his spare time, he writes about the history of the Lydians &ndash the first civilization to use gold and silver coinage.

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The Coins of Sardis

The Lydians were justly famous for their coinage. Apart from this statement of Herodotus, an earlier Greek authority, Xenophanes of Colophon, explicitly attributed the very invention of coinage to the Lydians, 1 and this is borne out by the evidence of the coins themselves. The earliest coins made of solid gold were known throughout the ancient Greek world as 𠇌roeseids,” after the Lydian king who introduced them. 2 All earlier coins had been made exclusively of the gold-silver alloy known as electrum. Since a number of these earliest coins were inscribed with Lydian names in the Lydian alphabet, it is perfectly evident that they, too, were minted in Lydia by Lydians.

This historical linkage between Lydia, electrum, and the beginning of coinage is not hard to understand. 3 To begin with, the electrum itself was Lydian. An alloy in which gold occurs naturally in stream-bed deposits, electrum was indigenous to the region and, by the seventh century BCE, was being panned and dug from the Pactolus River and other Lydian streams and mines in legendary quantities, producing the fabulous wealth of the Lydian royal dynasty (see Greenewalt, “Lydian Gold and Silver Refining”). As the most abundant precious metal in the land, electrum in the form of nuggets, weighed ingots, and bags of electrum 𠇍ust” must have been put to use in all sorts of payments for goods and services, at least for a time. But because it was a mixed metal whose gold-silver proportions varied in nature and could be artificially manipulated by adding refined silver to dilute the gold content, it was poorly suited as a dependable means of exchange.

Testing Coins for Metal Content

When offered in a transaction, the quality of the metal first had to be tested visually from the color of streaks made on a touchstone (No. 16), and while such testing presented no problems with larger lumps of electrum, it would have been practically impossible to test a bagful of dozens of small nuggets and crumbs of the metal. Even if each small piece were separately tested, it would have been exceedingly difficult to determine with any accuracy the value of an entire bag of pieces, each with a different weight and fineness. Over time, as the complexities and unreliability of electrum bullion became widely recognized, Lydians and their Greek and Carian neighbors who had accumulated large stocks of this metal must have found it increasingly difficult to utilize it in payments that others would accept.

One way out of this dilemma would have been to avoid dealing in electrum bullion altogether and, if possible, separate it metallurgically into its pure gold and silver components, whose exchange use was straightforward. But, despite written evidence for gold-refining in second millennium Mesopotamia and Egypt, it is not certain whether a technique for fully parting silver and gold (as opposed to removing base metal impurities) from electrum had been developed before the sixth century. 4 In any case, authorities in seventh-century Asia Minor hit upon a much simpler solution for making acceptable payments with electrum, namely by making them in the form of small, stamped ingots of uniform weight—that is, coins—the value of which was set and guaranteed by the authority whose stamp it bore. By effectively transferring valuation from the metal itself to the issuing authority, this solution hugely simplified the use of electrum in exchange transactions. Instead of having to weigh out each piece of electrum and test it for fineness, stamped, pre-weighed, and guaranteed units of the metal could be exchanged instantaneously at sight. Total sums could be determined quickly and exactly by the simple counting out of coins and by the fact that these earliest electrum coins were issued in small, fractional denominations as well as in larger weight units.

Early Coins

The most important finds of these early electrum coins come from excavations. In the 1904𠄵 excavations beneath the great Temple of Artemis at Ephesus, archaeologists from the British Museum discovered ninety-three electrum coins that had been deposited as offerings during the latter part of the seventh century BCE. 5 Recent excavations in the Temple area have recovered more coins from late seventh-century contexts, including the exhibition’s Nos. 19 and 21.

Nine of the Ephesian specimens were typeless electrum “proto-coins,” some marked with a square punch, that belonged to an early stage of development, before such pieces came to be stamped on their upper faces with a symbol of the producing authority. The rest of the coins were stamped with over a dozen different symbols or coin types. At least one type, the profile head of a lion accompanied by a Lydian inscription, belongs to coins that are clearly Lydian in origin (Nos. 19, 20, 21 Figs. 1, 2,3, 4, 5, 6). Other symbols identify coins that were minted at nearby Greek cities, like Phocaea (head of a seal) and, probably, Ephesus (forepart of a stag). Still other symbols (two roosters, human head, horse’s head, beetle, goat’s head, for example) are of uncertain origin. Indeed, the profusion of type symbols is a puzzling characteristic of the early electrum coinage as a whole. Dozens upon dozens of different coin types are known, 6 suggesting that in addition to the coins that were minted by Lydian monarchs and Greek city states, much early electrum may have been struck by local dynasts, large landholders, and other petty rulers in Lydia and neighboring regions𠅊nyone, in short, with wealth in electrum and a need to spend it.

Electrum twelfth-stater from Ephesus, lion head with wart on the nose, No. 19, obverse (Courtesy of the Vedat Nedim Tör Museum, Istanbul)

Electrum twelfth-stater from Ephesus, lion head with wart on the nose, No. 19, reverse (Courtesy of the Vedat Nedim Tör Museum, Istanbul)

Electrum twelfth-stater from Ephesus, lion head with Lydian inscription “WALWET” (No. 20), obverse (Courtesy of the Vedat Nedim Tör Museum, Istanbul)

Electrum twelfth-stater from Ephesus, lion head with Lydian inscription “WALWET” (No. 20), reverse (Courtesy of the Vedat Nedim Tör Museum, Istanbul)

Electrum third-stater from Ephesus, lion head with Lydian inscription “KUKALIM” (No. 21), obverse (Courtesy of the Vedat Nedim Tör Museum, Istanbul)

Electrum third-stater from Ephesus, lion head with Lydian inscription “KUKALIM” (No. 21), reverse (Courtesy of the Vedat Nedim Tör Museum, Istanbul)

Lion Head Coinage

The most numerous coins found in the Ephesus excavations were those stamped with the head of a lion in profile (Nos. 19, 20, 21 Figs. 1, 3, 5). Six of them bear the Lydian inscription WALWET, which, according to many scholars, probably records the name of the great Lydian king known to the Greeks as Alyattes (ca. 610� BCE No. 20). 7 A few other lion-head coins are inscribed with a Lydian name KUKALIM, “Of Gyges” (No. 21, Fig. 5). Because he lived much earlier than these coins, this cannot be the name of the famous king, but it could be the name of a treasury or other royal official with a responsibility for minting. 8 However the names are interpreted, all of this lion-head coinage, with and without inscriptions, is understood to be the royal coinage of the Lydian monarchy. A large hoard of some forty-five of these royal lion-head coins, slightly later than the ones at Ephesus, was excavated at the Phrygian capital city of Gordion in 1963 (Nos. 24.1-24.26, 24.27, 24.28-24.45, Figs. 11, 12). 9 This eastern-most find of Lydian coins tangibly documents how fully Phrygia had been incorporated into the Lydian empire by the early sixth century.

The lion-head coins were minted in graduated denominations, the largest weighing 4.7 grams (= 1/3 of a Lydian weight stater), the smallest (1/48th of a stater) a mere 0.29 g. Remarkably, these were accompanied by still tinier fractions (1/96th of a stater) that had the type of a lion’s paw, the weight of 0.15 g, and a diameter of only 4 millimeters (No. 23, Figs. 9, 10). Inasmuch as half of the electrum coins in the Ephesus deposit weighed less than 1.2 g, it is obvious that these earliest coins were not minted for use in high-value payments alone, but were employed in a broad range of economic activities, including transactions as modest as these extremely minuscule coins would allow. Because of their substantial component of gold, these small fractional electrum coins were nevertheless a good deal more valuable than their diminutive sizes might suggest. For example, indications are that a 1/24th stater electrum coin was worth enough to purchase a sheep or a bushel of grain. 10

Another notable monetary aspect of the royal lion-head coins is that they were highly overvalued. There is fairly decisive evidence that they were officially valued as if they were made of unadulterated Lydian electrum as it occurs in nature (on average about 73% gold and 27% silver). Yet laboratory analyses have shown that their actual metal content had been artificially debased to 54% gold, 44% silver, 1 or 2% copper, meaning that the Lydian state apparently could not resist the temptation to take advantage of its monopoly over the production and valuation of the coinage. The extraordinary profit realized by making payments with such adulterated electrum coins was in the area of 15 to 20%. 11

Electrum twelfth-stater from Ephesus, lion head with wart on the nose, No. 19, obverse (Courtesy of the Vedat Nedim Tör Museum, Istanbul)

Electrum twelfth-stater from Ephesus, lion head with Lydian inscription “WALWET” (No. 20), obverse (Courtesy of the Vedat Nedim Tör Museum, Istanbul)

Electrum third-stater from Ephesus, lion head with Lydian inscription “KUKALIM” (No. 21), obverse (Courtesy of the Vedat Nedim Tör Museum, Istanbul)

Hoard of Lydian electrum coins from Gordion No 24, as found (Photograph by Crawford H. Greenewalt, jr.)

Hoard of Lydian electrum coins from Gordion, No. 24 [Gordion inv. 1078-1182] (Photograph by Crawford H. Greenewalt, jr.)

Electrum twenty-fourth stater from Ephesus, with lion paw (No. 23), obverse (Courtesy of the Vedat Nedim Tör Museum, Istanbul)

Electrum twenty-fourth stater from Ephesus, with lion paw (No. 23), reverse (Courtesy of the Vedat Nedim Tör Museum, Istanbul)

King Croesus and Coinage Reforms

Such an overvalued currency, of course, could not last. Eventually people would have caught on and refused to accept it in payments. Thus, around the middle of the sixth century, by which time the cementation process for parting electrum into silver and gold had certainly become available, the reigning Lydian king Croesus reformed the currency by calling in the electrum coins of the realm and exchanging them with a bimetallic coinage of pure gold and pure silver. 12 The fact that the new solid gold coins were called 𠇌roeseids” is proof enough that Croesus was the author of this bimetallic reform, but further proof that the reform must be dated no later than his reign turned up in 2002 during excavations of the city wall of Lydian Sardis. 13 Beneath the debris from the wall, which was demolished during the Persian capture of Sardis in the mid-540s BCE, the excavators discovered two small specimens of the reformed coinage, a 1/12th stater of gold and another 1/12th of silver (Nos. 27, 30, Figs. 13, 14, 15, 16, 17). A third specimen had been found in 1988 in the destruction debris itself, with the skeleton of a young man, probably a casualty of the battle with the Persians. When cleaned, this coin proved to be a silver 1/24th stater (No. 31, Figs. 18, 19). The fighter had probably been carrying the coin in his mouth𠅊 common custom at the time𠅏or the coin was found lying just in front of his skull. The gold Croeseid staters (No. 28.1-28.2, Figs. 20-21, and 22-23) are part of a hoard of thirty in a small clay jar that was found during the earlier American excavations at Sardis in 1922 14 it is thought that this hoard may have been buried also at the time of the Persian attack on Sardis in the 540s.

Like the electrum coins that preceded them, the gold and silver coins of Croesus are relatively thick and globular in shape and very simply designed. The device stamped on them—the confronted heads and extended single legs of a fierce lion and a bull in combat—is a traditional Near Eastern motif, and it may have been adopted by Croesus as his royal personal badge or signet. Or were the two animals here intended to symbolize the two complementary metals in which the coins were struck? Since the device itself identified the coins, the coins did not need an accompanying inscription. The rough punched squares on the coins’ undersides—two squares on the large stater denomination, one square on the smaller coins𠅌ontinue an element that goes back to the earliest electrum “proto-coins.” Unlike the earlier Lydian electrum coins, whose overvaluation kept them from circulating outside of Lydian territory, the pure metal coins of Croesus traveled widely this was especially true of the gold Croeseids, which gained popularity as a kind of international trade currency in the Aegean world. An Athenian-inscribed financial account of the year 440/439 attests that, among other miscellaneous coinages, gold Croeseids were still being saved in one of the treasuries of fifth-century Athens. 15

Group of three croeseid coins (one gold, two silver) from sector MMS (placed on finger for scale), obverse (©Archaeological Exploration of Sardis/President and Fellows of Harvard College)

Gold coin from under a pavement of the Lydian fortification at Sardis (No. 27) (©Archaeological Exploration of Sardis/President and Fellows of Harvard College)

Gold coin from under a pavement of the Lydian fortification at Sardis (No. 27) (©Archaeological Exploration of Sardis/President and Fellows of Harvard College)

Silver coin from under a pavement of the Lydian fortification at Sardis (No. 30) (©Archaeological Exploration of Sardis/President and Fellows of Harvard College)

Silver coin from under a pavement of the Lydian fortification at Sardis (No. 30) (©Archaeological Exploration of Sardis/President and Fellows of Harvard College)

Silver 24th stater found with a casualty of the Persian sack of Sardis (No. 31) (©Archaeological Exploration of Sardis/President and Fellows of Harvard College)

Silver 24th stater found with a casualty of the Persian sack of Sardis (No. 31) (©Archaeological Exploration of Sardis/President and Fellows of Harvard College)

Gold croeseid stater from hoard of 30, found at Sardis in 1922 (No. 28) (Courtesy of the Vedat Nedim Tör Museum, Istanbul)

Gold croeseid stater from hoard of 30, found at Sardis in 1922 (No. 28) (Courtesy of the Vedat Nedim Tör Museum, Istanbul)

Gold croeseid stater from hoard of 30, found at Sardis in 1922 (No. 28) (Courtesy of the Vedat Nedim Tör Museum, Istanbul)

Gold croeseid stater from hoard of 30, found at Sardis in 1922 (No. 28) (Courtesy of the Vedat Nedim Tör Museum, Istanbul)

Croeseid Coins and Their Persian Legacy

Because of their success, these influential coins of Croesus enjoyed a much longer life than Croesus himself. When the Persian king, Cyrus the Great, defeated Croesus in the mid-540s and added the Lydian kingdom to the Persian Empire, Cyrus not only retained Sardis as a major administrative center by making it the seat of the local Persian satrap or governor, but he also saw to it that the minting of the established lion-and-bull coinage was continued. Thus, for a period of about thirty years, from the death of Croesus down to near the end of the sixth century, the coinage remained the coinage of Croesus in name only. In terms of its actual production and official use, it had become the money of Persian rule in western Asia Minor. While the coins remained physically unchanged over this extended period, the artistic style of the lion-and-bull design went into decline. In contrast to the subtle, naturalistic rendering of the animals in the initial, Croesus phase of the coinage, the animals took on a hardened, more mechanical or stylized appearance during the mass production of the coins under the Persians (Figs. 24, 25, 26, 27). Under the Persians, too, the smaller fractional denominations were abandoned, and the coinage became essentially a coinage of two large denominations: the gold stater, or Croeseid (8.06 g), and the silver siglos, or shekel (5.35 g), worth one-twentieth of a gold stater.

Around 515 BCE the Persian King Darius I (522� BCE) finally brought this coinage to an end by replacing the Lydian lion-and-bull type of Croesus with an explicitly Persian royal image: the schematic representation of the Great King himself, crowned and holding or shooting with a bow. 16 In general, the new coins—the gold stater, popularly called the Daric after its creator, and the silver siglos (Figs. 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33)—retained the rudimentary form and lump-like character of the Croeseids they replaced. They were struck with the same weights and circulated generally in the same orbits. Doubtless minted at Sardis, the silver pieces served the as the primary coinage of the Persian administrative and military system in western Asia Minor, where the use of coinage was an established convention. (They did not circulate in the rest of the Persian Empire, where coinage was not commonly employed.)

Four such Persian silver sigloi (No. 32.3 and 32.4-32.6) are part of a modest hoard from ca. 500 BCE that was recovered in a small, clay lydion vessel (No. 33, Fig. 34) in the excavations at Old Smyrna (Bayraklı) accompanying them were two late Lydian lion-and-bull sigloi (32.1-32.2) and twenty silver 1/6 staters from the nearby coastal city of Phokaia (No. 32.7-32.20): altogether a rather typical mixed hoard of western Asia Minor silver with the local Greek silver providing the fractions and the Lydian and Achaemenid sigloi providing the higher-value pieces.

The gold Darics seem to have functioned mainly as a high-value international currency used for Persian payments to Greek and other foreign governments and agents. Privately, they were highly prized throughout the Aegean world for storing wealth in savings accumulations. 17 The coins in both of these metals were minted in vast quantities with hardly any change in design or style for nearly 200 years, until Alexander the Great took over the empire of the Persian kings and transformed it into a Greek and Macedonian empire.

Even at this juncture, however, Sardis did not cease to be a major mint. Just as the city had produced coins for Lydian and then Persian monarchs, after Alexander the city coined money for Alexander’s Greek successors. In particular, it served as one of the westernmost mints of the vast Seleucid Empire. Even under the Roman Empire, Sardis, like the other great urban centers of Asia Minor, produced a rich series of bronze coins that celebrated the gods and festivals of the city. 18 Altogether, the history of coinage produced at Sardis stretched from the seventh century BCE to the third century CE, a period of roughly 1,000 years. Still, the most important centuries were the earlier ones of the Lydian and Persian empires: when first the very idea of coinage was conceived for making workable payments in electrum when Croesus pioneered the practice of coining gold and silver in place of electrum and when Darius and all later kings of Persia issued coins from Sardis with a Persian stamp. During these first several centuries, the stream of precious metal money that flowed out of Sardis was a powerful factor in these empires’ political, economic, and military might.

Late croeseid half-stater from hoard found at Old Smyrna (No. 32.1) (Courtesy of the Vedat Nedim Tör Museum, Istanbul)

Late croeseid half-stater from hoard found at Old Smyrna (No. 32.1) (Courtesy of the Vedat Nedim Tör Museum, Istanbul)

Late croeseid half-stater from hoard found at Old Smyrna (No. 32.2) (Courtesy of the Vedat Nedim Tör Museum, Istanbul)

Late croeseid half-stater from hoard found at Old Smyrna (No. 32.2) (Courtesy of the Vedat Nedim Tör Museum, Istanbul)

Silver siglos from hoard found at Old Smyrna (No. 32.4) (Courtesy of the Vedat Nedim Tör Museum, Istanbul)

Silver siglos from hoard found at Old Smyrna (No. 32.4) (Courtesy of the Vedat Nedim Tör Museum, Istanbul)

Silver siglos from hoard found at Old Smyrna (No. 32.6) (Courtesy of the Vedat Nedim Tör Museum, Istanbul)

Silver siglos from hoard found at Old Smyrna (No. 32.6) (Courtesy of the Vedat Nedim Tör Museum, Istanbul)

Silver siglos from hoard found at Old Smyrna (No. 32.3) (Courtesy of the Vedat Nedim Tör Museum, Istanbul)

Silver siglos from hoard found at Old Smyrna (No. 32.3) (Courtesy of the Vedat Nedim Tör Museum, Istanbul)

Lydion No. 33, from Old Smyrna, which contained the silver coin hoard (Courtesy of the Vedat Nedim Tör Museum, Istanbul)

Notes

  • 1As recorded in Pollux 9.3.
  • 2Kraay 1976, 30� Cahill and Kroll 2005, 610.
  • 3Kroll 2008, 17�.
  • 4For opposing views on this question, see Ramage and Craddock 2000, 14�, and Le Rider 2001, 12�, 90�.
  • 5Robinson 1951 Kraay 1976, 20�.
  • 6Weidauer 1975 Waggoner 1983.
  • 7Most recently and in detail, see Wallace 2006.
  • 8Ibid. Another, altogether different, series of earlier electrum coins is inscribed with Lydian letters. The type is that of one or two boars’ heads the partially preserved name reads …LATE… (No. 22, Figs. 7, 8. See Spier 1998, 333�, pl. 70).
  • 9Bellinger 1968. For relative chronology, see Spier 1998, 333�.
  • 10According to one of the laws anciently attributed to the early sixth-century Athenian lawgiver, Solon, a sheep or a bushel of grain was worth a drachma of silver. At that time, silver was far less plentiful and hence more valuable than it became later after the mining of silver intensified throughout the Aegean. If the exchange ratio of an Athenian silver drachma (4.2 g) and an equivalent weight of early electrum were in the neighborhood of 9:1 (as deduced in Melville Jones 1998, 262), one could purchase a sheep or a bushel of grain for a 1/24th stater of electrum (0.58 g).
  • 11Le Rider 2001, 94� Cahill and Kroll 2005, 612�.
  • 12Kraay 1976, 30�.
  • 13Cahill and Kroll 2005.
  • 14Shear 1922, 396�.
  • 15Cahill and Kroll 2005, note 98.
  • 16Kraay 1976, 32� Carradice 1987.
  • 17Le Rider 2001,187�. Kraay 1976, 34.
  • 18For an excellent summary of the coinage of Sardis in the Hellenistic and Roman periods, see A. Johnston in Buttrey, Johnston, et al. 1981, Chapter I, “The Greek Coins.”

Electrum third-stater from Ephesus, boar head with Lydian inscription “…LATE…” (No. 22), obverse (Courtesy of the Vedat Nedim Tör Museum, Istanbul)

Electrum third-stater from Ephesus, boar head with Lydian inscription “…LATE…” (No. 22), reverse (Courtesy of the Vedat Nedim Tör Museum, Istanbul)


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The gold Stater of Croesus was the world’s first gold coin. It features a bull and a lion facing one another. Art was now used to adorn the surface of coins to identify the coin with the coin producer.

Lydia’s King Croesus

King Croesus reigned over Lydia from 561 to 547 B.C. Located in modern-day Turkey, Lydia was known for its skilled warriors and bustling trading centers. While Croesus was in power, the Mermnad Dynasty transformed into an empire by waging military campaigns in Ephesus, as well as Aeolian and Ionian cities.

In addition to his military might, Croesus was known for his lavish wealth, which he displayed by building a massive palace in Lydia’s capital of Sardis. The expression, “As rich as Croesus,” lives on today. While Croesus was arguably Lydia’s most well-known king, he was also its last. The empire fell to the Persians in 547 B.C.

Pure Gold Staters

King Croesus’ focus on developing coinage allowed his kingdom to expand its influence. Croesus was the first Lydian king to issue coins comprised of pure silver and pure gold. Under his father’s reign, Lydian staters were made of electrum, a naturally occurring substance that includes a combination of the two metals. According to myth, Lydia’s Pactolus River was rich in metals because King Midas of Phrygia washed in the river seeking to remove his curse of the “golden touch.”

While other ancient civilizations were experimenting with coins, the Lydians were the first to create a bi-metallic currency. As Herodotus wrote in the fifth century B.C., the Lydians were “the first people we know of to strike gold and silver coins and use them.”

Relying on an innovative refining process, the Lydians were also the first to issue coins of standard weight and purity. Gold staters weighed 126 grains, while the silver staters weighed 168 grains. Each coin was stamped with the lion and bull image, with the lion believed to symbolize strength and the bull to represent fertility.

While the Lydians were assimilated into the Persian Empire, their coinage survived. In fact, historians believe that the Persians continued to use the Sardis mint long after they assumed control. The notion of gold coins soon spread to other kingdoms in Asia Minor and then throughout Greece. The standardization of coinage allowed to the ancient world to gradually transition from the barter system to a system of currency, which we still use today.


Lydian Lion coin

Get detailed information on Lydian Lion (LLION) including real-time price index, historical charts, market cap, exchanges, wallets, and latest news. Lydian Lion (LLION) Price, Chart, Value & Market Cap | CoinCode The Lydian Lion is the one coin I'd personally call The Coin. It directly preceded ancient Greek coinage, which through Rome begot all Western coinage, and which through the Seleukids , Parthians , and Sassanians begot all Islamic coinage Lydian Lion is going to be a unique incentive for literally every single individual who is surfing the Internet and owns a mobile device. Lydian Life will introduce and passively enforce a golden quote by modern sociologists - offline is the next luxury

Ancient Greek Coins of Miletus (1) The Electrum Lion Coins of the Ancient Lydians (before Croesus) Lydia does not have many marvelous things to write. (2) Lydia · Lion's Head Right with Nose Wart / Square Incuse · Electrum · About 610-560 B . The example here shows a lion and bull facing each other, minted in silver. Our picture is a one-half stater (weight 5.1 grams) from Daniel Frank Sedwick in Winter Park, Florida, USA which sold for $220 US dollars in a 2010 auction. I have seen coins with better-defined lion/bull renditions selling as high as $1000 Ancients LYDIAN KINGDOM. Alyattes or Walwet (ca. 610-546 BC). EL third-stater or trite (13mm, 4.72 gm). NGC XF 5/5 - 4/5. Uninscribed, Lydo-Milesian standard. Sardes mint. Head of lion right, mouth open, mane bristling, radiate globule above eye / Two square punches of different size, side by side, with irregular interior surfaces. Linzalone 1090. Weidauer 86. Boston 1764. SNG von Aulock 2868. SNG Kayhan 1013. Bright surfaces, pink toning on reverse. https://coins.ha.com/itm/ancients/greek/an.. The Lydian Lion coins were made of electrum, a naturally occurring alloy of gold and silver but of variable precious metal value. The royal lion symbol stamped on the coin, similar to a seal, was a declaration of the value of the contents. These directly preceded ancient Greek coinage, through which Rome begot all Western coinage, and through which the Seleucids, Parthians, and Sassanians begot all Islamic coinage. Indian coinage has largely been a product of Greek, Roman, and.

Lydia Alyattes to Kroisos Lion EL 1/12 Stater Hemihekte Coin 610-546 BC - VF. $747.30. Was: $795.00. Free shipping The Lydian Electrum trite. The Lion & the Sun. The first coin to be minted in the world. 610-600 BC, by King Alyattes in Sardis, Lydia, Asia Minor (now present day Turkey). Weighing 4.71g of a gold & silver alloy, and measuring only 13x10x4mm in size. The Lydian was the very first symbol of currency Early 6th century BC Lydian electrum coin (one-third stater denomination). According to sixths and twelfths along with lion paw fractions. To complement the largest denomination, fractions were made, including a hekte (sixth), hemihekte (twelfth), and so forth down to a 96th, with the 1/96 stater weighing only about 0.15 grams. There is disagreement, however, over whether the fractions.

Ancient Greek coins from the Lydian Kingdom in modern-day Turkey. The kingdom existed from c.1200 BC to 546 BC. Subcategories are rulers in alphabetical order, including Alyattes, Alyattes II, Kroisos, Time of Alyattes to Kroisos, Time of Cyrus to Darios I, Time of Darios I, Time of Kroisos to Kambyses, and Uncertain Lydian Kin The Oldest Coin in the World Created over 2,700 years ago, but now located in the British Museum, is the Lydian Lion, the oldest coin in the world. It is a one-sided design featuring a roaring lion, the emblem of the Lydian Kings who created it around 610-600 BC At least one type, the profile head of a lion accompanied by a Lydian inscription, belongs to coins that are clearly Lydian in origin (Nos. 19, 20, 21 Figs. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6). Other symbols identify coins that were minted at nearby Greek cities, like Phocaea (head of a seal) and, probably, Ephesus (forepart of a stag)

Lydian Lion (LLION) Price, Chart, Value & Market Cap

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  • The First Coin Fraud: 600 BC, The Lydian Lion Silver coin - YouTube. Beard-Easytouse-Sep2020-QFC1R1V5 16x9 07. Watch later
  • Latest Pickup of 5 Rare Lydian Lion 600BC - 2009AD Silver 1/4oz RoundsAny information you can share, please feel free to comment
  • Lions of Lydia is a bag-management and engine-building game about the dawn of currency. As an influential leader, you send merchants out to barter for resources and increase your landholdings. When the nobles arrive, they bring their Lydian Lion coins into play—which have unparalleled buying power
  • Lydian Lion was the first coin created by human around 610 BC and we decided to give it a comeback in the modern age as a cryptocurrency on Stellar blockchain. It's very important to gather information about human civilization and culture for everyone and most people don't take advantage of modern technology to learn and improve through their life. The platform will contain multiple ways.

It's made of electrum, an alloy of gold and silver called white gold in ancient times (50-60 percent gold with these coins). One of the many fascinating aspects of this coin is the mysterious sunburst above the lion's eye. The first metal coins are regarded by some as having been invented in China Lydian Lion, Split, Croatia. 515 likes. Lydian Lion is a new way of using a cryptocurrency based platform with implementations through trading, tourism. The coins were minted in Sardis (or Sardes), the Lydian capital, with an unmistakable design that represented the city: the foreparts of a lion (on the left) and a bull (on the right) facing one another. Smaller varieties only use the right-facing lion protome with a small sunburst above that many modern observers mistook for a nose wart. The image was created by a punch, as evidenced by. The Lydian Word for lion*) By R. W. Wallace, North Carolina In 1968 F. Steinherr proposed to identify cuneiform Luwian walwi with the Sumerian logogram ur.mah, lion, and the Hieroglyphic Lu wian logogram leo, by equating the Luwian PNs Piha-URMAH, piha-leo and piha-walwi, and also ur.mah-lu(-w), leo-lu-/, Walwa-LV-is and Walwi-ziti>) This hypothesis was then proved by H. Otten, who could.

Lydian Lion coins, or staters, were the world's first true coins. They were wildly successful, generating massive wealth for the Lydians. Lydian merchants created the first true, permanent market, and Lydian staters became a default currency for trade between nations Riesenauswahl an Markenqualität. Folge Deiner Leidenschaft bei eBay! Kostenloser Versand verfügbar. Kauf auf eBay. eBay-Garantie Live Lydian Lion prices from all markets and LLION coin market Capitalization. Stay up to date with the latest Lydian Lion price movements and forum discussion. Check out our snapshot charts and see when there is an opportunity to buy or sell Lydian Lion Lydian Lion Token. Lydian Lion is a new way of using a cryptocurrency based platform with implementations through trading, tourism, and living. Ticker. Lydian Lion Token. Country . Croatia. Industries. Business services Education Electronics Health Media Tourism. Website. Link to Website. Contact Email. [email protected] White paper. Link to Whitepaper. Platform. Ethereum. Tot

Lydian Lion - Coins - Coin collecting - Numismatic

  1. The Lydian Lion is the one coin I'd personally call The Coin. It directly preceded ancient Greek coinage, which through Rome . begot all Western coinage, and which through the Seleukids, Parthians, and Sassanians begot all Islamic coinage. Indian coinage has largely been a product of Greek, Roman, and Islamic influences.[4]Chinese coinage, though it probably developed independently, was.
  2. Whether these coins are Lydian or Ionian may be still an open question, but their primitive style and fabric renders it probable that they are antecedent to the Lion types, which seem to have superseded them about the time of Alyattes (B.C. 610-561). I infer therefore that, during the reigns of the predecessors of Alyattes, Gyges (B.C. 687-652), Ardys (B.C. 652-615), and Sadyattes (B.C. 615.
  3. The Lydian Lion is widely considered the oldest coin in the world. These coins predate ancient Greek coinage and were created in the ancient Kingdom of Lydia, which was located in modern-day western Turkey. While the dates of these coins are debated - with some dates going as far back as 700 BCE - it is most commonly believed tha
  4. When the nobles arrive, they bring their Lydian Lion coins into play—which have unparalleled buying power. To achieve victory, you must manage the merchants in your bag and complement their abilities with the cards in your tableau. Traditional merchants produce basic resources, which are necessary to build your engine—but if you fail to convert your resources into coins, you will not be.
  5. a. Since we know from surviving weights that the
  6. ted sometime around 600 BC in Lydia, Asia Minor (current-day Turkey), a country in close geographic and cultural proximity to the Greek colonies in Asia Minor Is the world 1st coin.It's made of electrum, an alloy of gold and silver called white gold in ancient times (50-60 percent gold with these coins)
  7. 01feb12:00 am 01jun11:59 pm Lydian Lion Token Sale Cryptocurrencies were never meant to be a destination, but rather the journey. Time. February 1 (Saturday) 12:00 am - June 1 (Monday) 11:59 pm. Calendar GoogleCal. Submit a Comment Cancel reply. Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked * Comment. Name * Email * Website. Risk Disclosure: Please note that all Initial.

Lydian Lion - The Best Initial Coin Offering (ICO

Lydian Lion (LLION) info, quotes and chart Lydian Lion is a new way of using a cryptocurrency based platform with implementations through trading, tourism, and living. Lydian Lion will integrate into new and existing social media platforms to reward users for their progress through different applications that will connect through a real-world connection. The Project and Lydian Lion Token itself will connect all our partners and users. This is one of the world's earliest known coins. The lion on the front is the symbol of the Lydian royal family of king Croesus. The stamped squares on the.. Five Lydian Felines* CHRISTOPHER RATTE Abstract Archaic and Classical Lydia's national symbol was the lion. The importance of the lion-symbol is attested in archaeology by its appearance on Lydian coins and by its popularity in Lydian sculpture. Four additions to the corpus of Lydian lions are presented in this article. Lik

Electrum Lion Coins of Ancient Lydia (Ancient Coins of

  • Coin/Token. Token. Token Type. Fungible Tokens Utility. Payment Methods. ETH , BTC. Escrow. No. Total Token. 50,000,000,000. Country. Croatia . D E S C R I P T I O N. Lydian Lion - CryptoCurrency ICO/STO/IEO. Lydian Lion is a new way of using a cryptocurrency based platform with implementations through trading, tourism, and living. Lydian Lion will integrate into new and existing social media.
  • The lion on this coin is seen as a symbol of royalty. The two deep impressions were created by a hammer, used to punch the image of the lion and bull into the blank coin. Lydia was renowned for.
  • The Lion and The Bull. The shape of a Lydian stater didn't match the flat, circular piece of metal we generally think of as a coin shape. In fact, the shape wasn't regular at all. Staters usually had a semi-flattened, blob-like form that resembled a range from oval to bean-shaped. The exact shape didn't matter because the coin's value.
  • Some walwet coins struck before kukalim coins: Wallace 2006:39 and 44 cf. Wallace 1986:204 n. 21. WALWET and KUKALIM 155 royal family, striking coins with his family's lion-head seal'. This brief summary takes us up to the current state of interpretation of the walwet and kukalim issues of lion-head Lydian electrum coins. The critical.
  • ted around 600 BC in Lydia, Asia Minor. The obverse shows a lion roaring with teeth bared. The sunburst pattern atop the lion's head is a signature design feature in the original coin. The reverse features a rendering of a lion paw along with the fineness and weight.
  • كتب Coin Lion Lydian (20,624 كتاب). اذا لم تجد ما تبحث عنه يمكنك استخدام كلمات أكثر دقة. # Lydian Empire # Lydian Mamushaj # Lydian currency format # Lydian Language # Arenys Lydian # 2442 book of poetry theory Coin # Killing for Coin # SEC special coin # Coin games # Coin Collecting # Yen Coin Japan # Coin Franc Classes central African # Roman.
  • ted, and a lion's head was stamped on it as a sign of power. Image of Lydian Lion according to historical research. The Lydians were the first people to mix gold and silver in one coin (the mixture of them is called 'electrum'). Some historians said a single Lydian coin was equal to the price of 11 sheep. Meanwhile, others said it was.

Lydian Lion (PreICO) (LLion) ICO start date, end date, financial information, whitepaper, team and other important information. Plugins Support Email Plugins Docs Market Cap: $1,855,512,718,835.17 24h Vol: $177,573,018,001.51 BTC Dominance: 57.91% Coins. 2000+ Coins List (Demo) Top Gainers / Losers (Demo) Bitcoin (Coin Page Demo) Crypto Calculator (Demo) Buy Coins MarketCap Plugin. World s first coin the lydian lion lunaticg ancient coin timeline gold coins silver ancient coin timeline gold coins silver the oldest coin in world middle georgia club gold coin of croesus history 2701 wiki fandom. Share on: Twitter Facebook Google+ Pinterest Reddit Stumble it Digg LinkedIn Del.icio.us. You may also like . Forex Live Rates. Live stan open market forex rates forex rate chart. .21. 0.84%. Tether $1.00. 0.26%. Polkadot $44.59. 0.16%. Cardano $1.19-3.67%. Home ICO Rating Lydian Lion Lydian Lion - ICO Detailed Information . ICO: Lydian Lion Since they originally appeared almost 11 years ago, cryptocurrencies have been promising a change that would make the world a better place for everyone. They offer a number of benefits over traditional. The coin showed a picture of a lion with an inscription in front of its face. The inscription in front of the lion is WALWET: written in a mirror image of the Lydian letters. It is possible that the first die carvers of the Lydian lions engraved WALWET into the die directly as it is written, not realizing that, when a coin is stamped, a mirror image of the word WALWET would result on the coin. Second coin above: Lydian electrum trite, second major variety (4.74g, 12x11x4 mm), Sardis, Lydia, Asia Minor (present-day Turkey), c. 600-560 BC. This is the second main variety of Lydian trites, later, slightly more refined in style, and considerably more common than the first. Helenistik Dönem Antik Yunan Arkeoloji Yerler. Account Suspended. Antik Yunan Sanatı Antik Yunan Antik Tarih.

A Lydian Text on an Electrum Coin - Volume 46 Issue 1. 15 This is noticed by Radet, , La Lydie et le monde grec, p. 171 Google Scholar: 'On ne cite, en Ionie, qu'une ville dont il se soit emparé, Colophon.'The strength of the Persian influence at Colophon (see Gardner, P., Hist. of Ancient Coinage, pp. 259 - 260 Google Scholar) may have been due to the thoroughness of this Lydian. The Lydian Lion Was the First True Coin. When Alyattes first stamped his electrum nuggets with the Lydian Lion symbol, he couldn't have known that he was creating what would become the basis for nearly every system of coinage in history to follow, but that's exactly what happened

Offering Roman coins, Greek coins, ancient coins, British coins, medieval coins, coin auctions, renaissance coins, Indian coins, rare coins, Celtic coins, European. The use of the Lydian Lion symbol demonstrated that the coins were official tender of the kingdom. Other kingdoms subsequently followed suit, striking coins with their own hallmark images. However, Lydia was the first to add a seal that linked the coin to a ruling authority, thereby adding legitimacy to the currency's use in trade. The coins were comprised of electrum, a natural. How much is the Lydian Lion coin worth? Ancient Greece (Lydia) Lion and Bull Stater 560BC to 546BC This one sold for $7250 in a 2014 Heritage auction. 35 Related Question Answers Found What language did the Lydians speak? Lydian, a member of the Anatolian branch of Indo-European languages that was spoken in western Anatolia (modern Turkey) up to about the 1st Century BC, when the Lydians.

Coin Value: Ancient Greece (Lydia) Lion and Bull Stater

  1. First coins in the world came from Lydia. Archaeologists claim the name of the coin as 'Lydian Trite'. A silver-gold alloy called electrum was used in 564 BC to make Lydian coins. Read more about the history of Silver Bullion. The Lydian Lion and the Trojan Horse of Agamemnon were the other notable symbolisms from the Lydian age of Coinage
  2. These coins were likely worth a month's subsistence or up to 11 sheep at the time of their use. And yet today, the Lydian lion trite typically costs $1,000-$2,000. It's even possible to find one of these ancient coins for under $100. That's less than the price of a single sheep, which cost about $200 apiece today
  3. Lydian Lion (PreICO) (LLion) ICO start date, end date, financial information, whitepaper, team and other important information
  4. Lions of Lydia is a bag-management and engine-building game about the dawn of currency in the ancient world. As a wealthy aristocrat at the turn of the era, you will hire merchants to barter at the city gates for goods you can use to grow your landholdings. When Lydian merchants arrive from the capital, you will gain access to the versatile Lydian Lion coins they bear, which are needed to.

These early coins had the royal Lydian symbol on the obverse the lion. When Kroises came to power, he retained this symbol, but also added a bull. There are many theories as to why he put this new symbol on. Some say that the lion represents Asia, and the bull, Europe, symbolizing his power (Asia) conquering the Greeks (European). Kroises was king from 560 to 546 BCE. He made many important. This particular coin is of the earliest variety of Lydian coins, most commonly dated to 630-620 BCE during the reign of Sadyattes. It is dramatically rarer than the subsequent issues, minted.

CoinArchives.com Search Results : Lydi

A Case for the World's First Coin: The Lydian Lion Kategorie : Legierung Dieser Artikel basiert auf dem Artikel Elektron_(Legierung) aus der freien Enzyklopädie Wikipedia und steht unter der GNU-Lizenz für freie Dokumentation Lydian coin minting. The Lydian Lion was minted by Alyettes of Lydia, - BC. However, it took some time before ancient coins were used for commerce and trade. Even the. The most prolific mint for early electrum coins was Sardis which produced large quantities of the lion head thirds, sixths and twelfths. This coin is not competing lydian coin minting any sets. Https://wallet-money.

History of coins - Wikipedi

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  2. The Lion Head Electrum coins from Lydia with the inscription Walwet are among the first made. Struck from obverse dies that had far too much detail to fit on this size coin, probably intended for a larger Stater. Most coins are found with varying degrees of inscription in front of the lions head. According to many scholars, Walwet was written in the Lydian alphabet, but when.
  3. Lydian Lion is a new way of using a cryptocurrency based platform with implementations through trading, tourism and living. Lydian Lion will integrate into new and existing social media platforms to reward users for their progress through different applications that will connect through a real-world connection
  4. Binance Coin $270.68. 3.72%. Tether $1.00. 0.01%. Cardano $1.19. 0.20%. Polkadot $32.62. 1.41%. Home ICO Reviews Lydian Lion Reviews Lydian Lion Reviews. Submit. Author. Review. Submit Cancel. DBan February 18, 2021. Nowadays, people have dug themselves so deep into the virtual world that nothing would be able to drag them from there, not Lydian Lion, not whatever or whomever! This process.
  5. Lydian Lion is a new way of using a cryptocurrency based platform with implementations through trading, tourism, and living. Lydian Lion will integrate into new and existing social media platforms to reward users for their progress through different applications that will connect through a real-world connection
  6. 561-546 BC Lydian Kingdom Croesus AR third-stater NGC G AS RICH AS CROESUS! $335.00. Free shipping. Seller 99.8% positive. Ancient Gaul Massalia AR Obol Silver Coin 100 BC - Certified NGC Choice VF . $267.90. $285.00 previous price $285.00. Free shipping. Seller 100% positive. Cilicia Tarsus Mazaeus AR Stater Lion Bull Coin 361-328 BC - Certified NGC VF. $747.30. $795.00 previous price $795.
  7. Sardes, Lydia, Electrum Twelfth-Stater. 7.5 mm 1.16 g. 600-546 BC. Lion's head right with open jaws, plain solar disk on forehead. / Incuse punch. SNG ANS 1967.152.472 SNG Ashmolean 757 Weidauer 90 Sear Greece 3402 Dewing 2424-2425 GRPC Lydia G30. Text: Image: SNG Cop 464: Sardes, Lydia, AE18, Civic issue, 200-1 BC. Head of youthful Dionysos right, wreathed with ivy / ΣAΡΔIANΩN.

. The coins minted were used for trading and the paying of mercenary fighters in Lydian society. The coin is has a height of 1 cm and a width of 2 cm. Technical Evaluation Edit [edit | edit source] The coins and most coins made in Lydian society by skilled. Lydian Lion : Close. 1. Posted by 11 months ago. Archived. Lydian Lion : In a synopsis, the user will earn virtual points or tokens within the platform via actively pursuing kind actions and social interaction, then he'll be able either to redeem those in exchange for services/products within LL dApp, or even exchange them on a stable ratio with Lydian Lion coins in crypto exchanges in order. Electrum lion coins of the ancient Lydians (about 600BC) A Case for the World's First Coin: The Lydian Lion (Memento vom 22. Juli 2011 im Internet Archive Diese Seite wurde zuletzt am 23. Januar 2021 um 09:33 Uhr bearbeitet. Der Text ist unter der Lizenz Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike verfügbar Informationen zu den Urhebern und zum Lizenzstatus eingebundener Mediendateien. AR Hekte (1.03g). Head of roaring lion right / Irregular incuse punch. Unpublished in major references. Probably once coated with electrum foil, similar to the coin mentioned in Franke's Antike Metallurgie und Muenzpragung, page 15. This coin also made from silver/ billon (rather than bronze, as typical for later fourre's) Including the Lydian Lion, discussed on the first page of this site, here are seven of the more important or interesting Greek-era coin types depicting lions, along with some ancient and modern fakes of the same. Note: All of the coins illustrated on these pages that are in my possession are stored off site. Lydian Lion Kroisos Lion and Bull Miletos Lion Cherronesos Lion Baal and Lion.

Coins were not invented until 610 BC by King Alyattes (610-560 BC). The Lydian Lion coin directly preceded ancient Greek coinage, through which Rome begot all Western coinage. Yet, although the Lydian Lion was minted by Alyattes for use as a nobleman's tax-token, [6] it took some time before ancient coins were used for everyday commerce and trade The Lydian lion Trite (third stater) is undoubtedly the first general issue coin that was widely used in trade. Early issues bear inscriptions that are most often described as bearing the word Walwel in the Lydian script. However, there is no evidence that there was a Lydian script at this period. I believe it far more likely that some form of the Phoenecian script which becomes the Paleo. The most famous coin type of ancient Miletus, and one of the earliest of all coins that can be attributed to a particular city, is the electrum stater that features a crouching lion regardant on the obverse, and three incuse punches on the reverse. Although they are not excessively rare, these electrum staters (weighing just over fourteen grams) are understandably very expensive, and no. The 1 ⁄ 48 stater coin is a circulation coin that is believed to have been issued by the Kingdom of Lydia, an Ancient Anatolian nation that was located in parts of what is now western Turkey.As with all Lydian coins produced before the reign of King Croesus (595 BC-c. 547 BC), the time period in which the 1 ⁄ 48 stater piece was minted is currently under debate, but numismatists often. The brand new SD Bullion Exclusive 2021 Silver Roaring Lion Coin is now available for purchase! Our Truth Series Coins are struck at the famous and highly-respected Sunshine Mint, the most reputable private mint in the United States. The combination of the limited mintage of only 150,000 coins worldwide and excellent quality along with the Roaring Lion consistently having one of the lowest.

Lydia Coin for sale eBa

Lydian company has a high confidence rating. I'm sure that even the leading banks will be invest in their project. Think ahead of them a great future, many will value the project highly. Become a participant of the project right now. \#LLION #Lydian-Lion #ICO #bitcoin #btc #cryptocurrenc Today there is a great competition in the development of crypto industry.#LLION #Lydian-Lion #ICO #bitcoin #btc and #cryptocurrency . 1. 0 comments. share. save. 1. Crossposted by 11 months ago. Archived. Stuck at home and looking for additional income? Check out DuckDice and start earning free Bitcoin, LTC, and ETH today! DD brings the action with up to 9999x payouts and free daily faucets.

Lydian Financ

  • Lydian coins with Dionysos' image and ancient references to wines of specific Lydian locations are attested in Roman times. 7. Hermes' presence in the Lydian pantheon largely depends on a fragmentary verse of Hipponax, Ephesian poet of the sixth century BC, whose vocabulary included Lydian and other Anatolian words. In Hipponax's verse, Hermes Dog-throttler is identified with.
  • This coin was commissioned by Brutus himself in 42 BC, just months before his own suicide. The coins were recalled by Mark Antony and Octavian to be melted down for reuse. Thus, less than 100 are known to have survived, making this one of the rarest coins as well as the most significant. 2. The Athens Decadrachm, 460-430 B
  • Lydian coins found in Ionian mainland temple of Greek goddess Artemis (Roman name - Diana) during archeological excavation in 1951 gives credence to such speculation. Logically, both arguments make sense but we may never know. Herodotus, the greek historian's writings also tell us that Lydian king Croesus had given great number of coins to the temple at Delphi. Croesus asked advice from the.
  • The most famous coin type of ancient Miletus, and one of the earliest of all coins that can be attributed to a particular city, is the electrum stater that features a crouching lion regardant on the obverse, and three incuse punches on the reverse. Although they are not excessively rare, these electrum staters (weighing just over fourteen grams) are understandably very expensive. The fourteen.
  • On the obverse of the coin are a lion and bull protome facing one another and on the reverse are two quadratum incusum (square depressions) produced during..
  • LYDIAN KINGDOM. Alyattes (ca. 620-560 BC). EL third-stater or trite (13mm, 4.71 gm). NGC Choice XF★ 5/5 - 5/5. Sardes, ca. 610 BC. ALYA, legend upward between confronting heads of roaring lions (only the one facing right fully visible) granular fields / Two incuse squares of different size, side-by-side, with irregular interior surfaces.
  • The lion head/incuse coinage is among the earliest firmly attributed to the Lydian kingdom, and its origins date to the time of Alyattes, who ruled circa 620/10-564/53 BC. While most of the coins are anepigraphic, a small number of them bear the inscription Walwel or Kukalim in Lydian. Although these names likely equate to Alyattes and Gyges, respectively, hoard studies have shown that these.

Lydia - Wikipedi

  • ted what would become the first official currency ever recorded. Each coin was made from electrum alloy which is a mixture of silver and gold. A very fun thing that we never managed to understand is, why lions were sculpted or depicted with two possible faces: Concerned as if they had problems Cold as if.
  • Rory Brown, of Nicklaus Brown & Co., On Collecting Lydian Coins - Denver, CO - Collectors and historians alike are enamored with the Lydian Lion and the stater, the world's first true coins
  • Croesus' first gold coins in 550 BC were true works of art - as he depicted the lion and the bull on the world's very first gold coin, THE STATER. Not only did he produce beautiful coins, but he also created a lavish palace in his capital of Sardis. Regarded as the richest man who ever lived by the Lydian people they started using the expression rich as Croesus. The fall of.
  • From the coin set 'The Smallest Gold Coins in the World'. Turkey 1,000,000 Lira (One Million) - 1997 - Antique Lydian coin with the head of a Lion. Gold fineness: 0.999 Weight: 1.2441 g (approx. 1/25 oz) Diameter: approx. 13.9 mm Mintage: 3,348 pieces - In coin holder with certificate of authenticity. Please view the photos to form your own impression. Will be sent as a registered parcel
  • Lydian Lion (PreICO) (LLion) ICO Information & Financials Share this. Lydian Lion (PreICO) ICO Price - 1 LLion = 0.001 EUR. ICO Name: Lydian Lion (PreICO) Symbol: LLion: Start Date : December 01, 2019: End Date: February 01, 2020: Country: Croatia: Platform: Stellar: Ends. 1 year ago. Website. ICO Description Team Members Twitter Feed Financial Info The main project is the development of.

Lydian Kings coins for sale - Buy Lydian Kings coins from

  • Lions of Lydia. As an influential leader, you send merchants out to barter for resources and increase your landholdings, bringing their Lydian Lion coins into play - which have unparalleled buying power. Learn more . Airship City. Build airships to further the development of airship city. Will your contributions earn you fame as an airship engineer? Learn more . Space Explorers. You recruit.
  • ting their.
  • Because the oldest lion head coins were discovered in that temple, and they do not appear to have been used in commerce, these objects may not have been coins but badges or medals issued by the priests of that temple. Anatolian Artemis was the Πὀτνια Θηρῶν (Potnia Thêrôn, Mistress of Animals), whose symbol was the stag. A small percentage of early Lydian/Greek coins have a.
  • Lydian Lion. Age: c.610 - 600 BCE (about 2,629 - 2,619 years ago) Country of Origin: The Kingdom of Lydia (modern-day western Turkey) Category: Archaeological - oldest coin. photo source: Wikimedia Commons. For much of human history, bartering or trading goods was the main economic system. Bartering emerged with some of the earliest civilizations in Mesopotamia around 6000 BCE and would.
  • Lydian Lion as Money? What were these coins used for? I Electrum coins were not found in the market place in Sardis (capital of Lydia) or outside of western Anatolia (so much for using it for international trade) I The intrinsic value of each coin was very high I Probably not the means of payment of choice - too precious I Francois says there is evidence it circulated [?] - evidence of.

Oldest Coin in the World History of Coins Monterey Compan

A new Lydian Alyattes Coin. May 2019 Gephyra 17:25-28 DOI: 10.37095/gephyra.509806. Authors: Max Gander. Download full-text PDF Read full-text. Lydian Coins are considers to be the First Coins ever produced and used. The alloy of gold and silver would appear a very poor choice for coinage since its natural gold content varies and is tough to measure with precision. This Article suggests that the uncertainty of the worth of electrum, and Thus, the close control that the Lydians had over its gold content in coin form, that was the keys. Oct 2, 2016 - The world's oldest coins, beginning in Lydia, Asia Minor More information The Lydian Lion, a little smaller then a US dime and weights about as a US quarter and made of a natural silver and gold alloy - known as Electrum, was found in current Turke

The Coins of Sardis - The Archaeological Exploration of Sardi

# LLION # Lydian_lion # ICO # cryptocurrency # blockchain. November 20, 2019 at 8:15 PM · Public. Related Pages. SwapZilla. 1.6K likes this . SwapZilla — is a unique infrastructure solution that revolutionizes crypto trading. BuschCoin. 566 likes this. BuschCoin the AMOC Game-Coin. HiveNet. 1.1K likes this. HiveNet - The Next Generation of Cloud Computing. See More.


Electrum

Lydia does not have many marvelous things to write about in comparison with other countries, except for the gold dust that is carried down from Mount Tmolus.

– Herodotus, The History, 1.93

The Pactolus River beside the slopes of Mount Tmolus in the kingdom of Lydia was one of the most important sources of electrum in the ancient world. According to Greek mythology, the river acquired its electrum when King Midas of nearby Phrygia bathed in it to wash away his golden touch, which had turned even his food into gold, a telling parable about the destructiveness of wealth. In actuality, The Paktolos River acquired its electrum from electrum-laden quartz deposits near Mount Tmolos (called Mount Bozdag today).

The alluvial deposits of gold were mixed with as much as 40% silver and some copper such a gold-silver mix is called electrum. The earliest coins were made of electrum with a standardized 55% gold, 45 silver and 1-2% copper concentration and had either no design or a some apparently random surface striations on one side and a punch impression on the other.

Just as the rulers of the Middle East today have become wealthy from oil, so the ancient Lydian kings became rich by accumulating and minting coins from electrum. The capital city of ancient Lydia was Sardis, and it was a major commercial center linking the Asian kingdoms of the east with the coastal Greek cities of Ionia, including Miletus. It is not an accident that the first coins appeared in the important commercial centers of Lydia and adjacent Ionia, nor that the first system of bimetallic currency – the first system of interrelated gold and silver issues – was also developed there. As the 19th century German historian Ernst R. Curtius wrote, “The Lydians became on land what the Phoenicians were by sea, the mediators between Hellas and Asia.”


Contents

Bullion and unmarked metals Edit

Metal ingots, silver bullion or unmarked bars were probably in use for exchange among many of the civilizations that mastered metallurgy. The weight and purity of bullion would be the key determinant of value. In the Achaemenid Empire in the early 6th century BCE, coinage was yet unknown, and barter and to some extent silver bullion was used instead for trade. [2] The practice of using silver bars for currency also seems to have been current in Central Asia from the 6th century BCE. [3] Coins were an evolution of "currency" systems of the Late Bronze Age, where standard-sized ingots, and tokens such as knife money, were used to store and transfer value.

Tongbei in Bronze Age China (circa 1100 BCE) Edit

In the late Chinese Bronze Age, standardized cast tokens were made, such as those discovered in a tomb near Anyang. [4] [5] These were replicas in bronze of earlier Chinese currency, cowrie shells, so they were named Bronze Shell. [6]

Lydian and Ionian electrum coins (circa 600 BCE) Edit

The earliest coins are mostly associated with Iron Age Anatolia of the late 7th century BCE, and especially with the kingdom of Lydia. [8] Early electrum coins (an alluvial alloy of gold and silver, varying wildly in proportion, and usually about 40–55% gold) were not standardized in weight, and in their earliest stage may have been ritual objects, such as badges or medals, issued by priests. [9] The unpredictability of the composition of naturally occurring electrum implied that it had a variable value, which greatly hampered its development. [10]

Most of the early Lydian coins include no writing ("myth" or "inscription"), only an image of a symbolic animal. Therefore, the dating of these coins relies primarily on archaeological evidence, with the most commonly cited evidence coming from excavations at the Temple of Artemis at Ephesus, also called the Ephesian Artemision (which would later evolve into one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World), site of the earliest known deposit of electrum coins. [7] Because the oldest lion head "coins" were discovered in that temple, and they do not appear to have been used in commerce [ citation needed ] , these objects may not have been coins but badges or medals issued by the priests of that temple [ citation needed ] . Anatolian Artemis was the Πὀτνια Θηρῶν (Potnia Thêrôn, "Mistress of Animals"), whose symbol was the stag. It took some time before ancient coins were used for commerce and trade [ citation needed ] . Even the smallest-denomination electrum coins, perhaps worth about a day's subsistence, would have been too valuable for buying a loaf of bread. [11] Maybe the first coins to be used for retailing on a large-scale basis were likely small silver fractions, Hemiobol, Ancient Greek coinage minted by the Ionian Greeks in the late sixth century BCE. [12]

In contrast Herodotus mentioned the innovation made by the Lydians: [10]

"So far as we have any knowledge, they [the Lydians] were the first people to introduce the use of gold and silver coins, and the first who sold goods by retail"

And both Aristotle (fr. 611,37, ed. V. Rose) and Pollux (Onamastikon IX.83), mention that the first issuer of coinage was Hermodike/Demodike of Cyme. [13] [14] Cyme was a city in Aeolia, nearby Lydia.

"Another example of local pride is the dispute about coinage, whether the first one to strike it was Pheidon of Argos, or Demodike of Kyme (who was wife of Midas the Phrygian and daughter of King Agammemnon of Kyme), or Erichthonios and Lycos of Athens, or the Lydians (as Xenophanes says) or the Naxians (as Anglosthenes thought)"

Many early Lydian and Greek coins were minted under the authority of private individuals and are thus more akin to tokens or badges than to modern coins, [16] though due to their numbers it is evident that some were official state issues. The earliest inscribed coins are those of Phanes, dated to 625–600 BC from Ephesus in Ionia, with the legend ΦΑΕΝΟΣ ΕΜΙ ΣΕΜΑ (or similar) (“I am the badge/sign/tomb of Phanes/light”), [17] or just bearing the name ΦΑΝΕΟΣ (“of Phanes”).

The first electrum coins issued by a monarch are those minted by king Alyattes of Lydia (died c. 560 BCE), for which reason this king is sometimes mentioned as the originator of coinage. [18]

Croesus: Pure gold and silver coins Edit

The successor of Alyattes, king Croesus (r. c. 560–546 BCE), became associated with great wealth in Greek historiography. He is credited with issuing the Croeseid, the first true gold coins with a standardized purity for general circulation. [10] and the world's first bimetallic monetary system c. 550 BCE. [10]

Coins spread rapidly in the 6th and 5th centuries BCE, leading to the development of Ancient Greek coinage and Achaemenid coinage, and further to Illyrian coinage. [19]

Standardized Roman currency was used throughout the Roman Empire. Important Roman gold and silver coins were continued into the Middle Ages (see Gold dinar, Solidus, Aureus, Denarius). Ancient and early medieval coins in theory had the value of their metal content, although there have been many instances throughout history of governments inflating their currencies by debasing the metal content of their coinage, so that the inferior coins were worth less in metal than their face value. Fiat money first arose in medieval China, with the jiaozi paper money. Early paper money was introduced in Europe in the later Middle Ages, but some coins continued to have the value of the gold or silver they contained throughout the Early Modern period. The penny was minted as a silver coin until the 17th century.

Achaemenid coinage (546–330 BCE) Edit

When Cyrus the Great (550–530 BC) came to power, coinage was unfamiliar in his realm. Barter and to some extent silver bullion was used instead for trade. [2] The practice of using silver bars for currency also seems to have been current in Central Asia from the 6th century. [3]

Cyrus the Great introduced coins to the Persian Empire after 546 BCE, following his conquest of Lydia and the defeat of its king Croesus, who had put in place the first coinage in history. With his conquest of Lydia, Cyrus acquired a region in which coinage was invented, developed through advanced metallurgy, and had already been in circulation for about 50 years, making the Lydian Kingdom one of the leading trade powers of the time. [2] It seems Cyrus initially adopted the Lydian coinage as such, and continued to strike Lydia's lion-and-bull coinage. [2]

Original coins of the Achaemenid Empire were issued from 520 BCE – 450 BCE to 330 BCE. The Persian Daric was the first truly Achaemenid gold coin which, along with a similar silver coin, the Siglos, represented the bimetallic monetary standard of the Achaemenid Persian Empire. [20]

Coinage of Southern Asia under the Achaemenid Empire Edit

The Achaemenid Empire already reached the doors of India during the original expansion of Cyrus the Great, and the Achaemenid conquest of the Indus Valley is dated to c. 515 BCE under Darius I. [2] An Achaemenid administration was established in the area. The Kabul hoard, also called the Chaman Hazouri hoard, [23] is a coin hoard discovered in the vicinity of Kabul, Afghanistan, containing numerous Achaemenid coins as well as many Greek coins from the 5th and 4th centuries BCE. [22] The deposit of the hoard is dated to the Achaemenid period, in approximately 380 BCE. [24] The hoard also contained many locally produced silver coins, minted by local authorities under Achaemenid rule. [25] Several of these issues follow the "western designs" of the facing bull heads, a stag, or Persian column capitals on the obverse, and incuse punch on the reverse. [25] [26]

According to numismatist Joe Cribb, these finds suggest that the idea of coinage and the use of punch-marked techniques was introduced to India from the Achaemenid Empire during the 4th century BCE. [27] More Achaemenid coins were also found in Pushkalavati and in Bhir Mound. [28]

Punch-marked coin minted in the Kabul Valley under Achaemenid administration. Circa 500–380 BCE, or c.350 BCE. [29] [22]

Gandharan "bent-bar" punch-marked coin minted under Achaemenid administration, of the type found in large quantities in the Chaman Hazouri and the Bhir Mound hoards.

Indian coins (circa 400 BCE–100 CE) Edit

The Karshapana is the earliest punch-marked coin found in India, produced from at least the mid-4th century BCE, and possibly as early as 575 BCE, [30] influenced by similar coins produced in Gandhara under the Achaemenid empire, such as those of the Kabul hoard, [31] or other examples found at Pushkalavati and in Bhir Mound. [28]

Greek Archaic coinage (until about 480 BCE) Edit

According to Aristotle (fr. 611,37, ed. V. Rose) and Pollux (Onamastikon IX.83), the first issuer of Greek coinage was Hermodike of Kyme. [13]

A small percentage of early Lydian/Greek coins have a legend. [33] A famous early electrum coin, the most ancient inscribed coin at present known, is from nearby Caria. This coin has a Greek legend reading phaenos emi sema [34] interpreted variously as "I am the badge of Phanes", or "I am the sign of light", [35] or "I am the tomb of light", or "I am the tomb of Phanes". The coins of Phanes are known to be among the earliest of Greek coins, a hemihekte of the issue was found in the foundation deposit of the temple of Artemis at Ephesos (the oldest deposit of electrum coins discovered). One assumption is that Phanes was a wealthy merchant, another that this coin is associated with Apollo-Phanes and, due to the Deer, with Artemis (twin sister of the god of light Apollo-Phaneos). Although only seven Phanes type coins were discovered, it is also notable that 20% of all early electrum coins also have the lion of Artemis and the sun burst of Apollo-Phaneos.

Alternatively, Phanes may have been the Halicarnassian mercenary of Amasis mentioned by Herodotus, who escaped to the court of Cambyses, and became his guide in the invasion of Egypt in 527 or 525 BCE. According to Herodotus, this Phanes was buried alive by a sandstorm, together with 50,000 Persian soldiers, while trying to conquer the temple of Amun–Zeus in Egypt. [36] The fact that the Greek word "Phanes" also means light (or lamp), and the word "sema" also means tomb makes this coin a famous and controversial one. [37]

Another candidate for the site of the earliest coins is Aegina, where Chelone ("turtle") coins were first minted circa 700 BCE. [38] Coins from Athens and Corinth appeared shortly thereafter, known to exist at least since the late 6th century BCE. [39]

Coin of Phaselis, Lycia. Circa 550–530/20 BCE.

Coin of Lycia. Circa 520–470/60 BCE.

Lycia coin. Circa 520-470 BCE. Struck with worn obverse die. [40]

Coin of Lesbos, Ionia. Circa 510–80 BCE.

Classical Greek antiquity (480 BCE

The Classical period saw Greek coinage reach a high level of technical and aesthetic quality. Larger cities now produced a range of fine silver and gold coins, most bearing a portrait of their patron god or goddess or a legendary hero on one side, and a symbol of the city on the other. Some coins employed a visual pun: some coins from Rhodes featured a rose, since the Greek word for rose is rhodon. The use of inscriptions on coins also began, usually the name of the issuing city.

The wealthy cities of Sicily produced some especially fine coins. The large silver decadrachm (10-drachm) coin from Syracuse is regarded by many collectors as the finest coin produced in the ancient world, perhaps ever. Syracusan issues were rather standard in their imprints, one side bearing the head of the nymph Arethusa and the other usually a victorious quadriga. The tyrants of Syracuse were fabulously rich, and part of their public relations policy was to fund quadrigas for the Olympic chariot race, a very expensive undertaking. As they were often able to finance more than one quadriga at a time, they were frequent victors in this highly prestigious event. Syracuse was one of the epicenters of numismatic art during the classical period. Led by the engravers Kimon and Euainetos, Syracuse produced some of the finest coin designs of antiquity.

Amongst the first centers to produce coins during the Greek colonization of mainland Southern Italy (Magna Graecia) were Paestum, Crotone, Sybaris, Caulonia, Metapontum, and Taranto. These ancient cities started producing coins from 550BCE to 510BCE. [41] [42]

Amisano, in a general publication, including the Etruscan coinage, attributing it the beginning to about 560 BCE in Populonia, a chronology that would leave out the contribution of the Greeks of Magna Graecia and attribute to the Etruscans the burden of introducing the coin in Italy. In this work, constant reference is made to classical sources, and credit is given to the origin of the Etruscan Lydia, a source supported by Herodotus, and also to the invention of coin in Lydia. [43]

Aegina coin type, incuse skew pattern. Circa 456/45–431 BCE.

Coin of Akanthos, Macedon, circa 470-430 BCE.

Coin of Aspendos, Pamphylia, circa 465–430 BCE.

Coin from Korkyra, circa 350/30–290/70 BCE.

Appearance of dynastic portraiture (5th century BCE) Edit

Although many of the first coins illustrated the images of various gods, the first portraiture of actual rulers appears with the coinage of Lycia in the 5th century BCE. [44] [45] No ruler had dared illustrating his own portrait on coinage until that time. [45] The Achaemenids had been the first to illustrate the person of their king or a hero in a stereotypical manner, showing a bust or the full body but never an actual portrait, on their Sigloi and Daric coinage from circa 500 BCE. [45] [46] [47] A slightly earlier candidate for the first portrait-coin is Themistocles the Athenian general, who became a Governor of Magnesia on the Meander circa 465–459 BCE for the Achaemenid Empire, [48] although there is some doubt that his coins may have represented Zeus rather than himself. [49] Themistocles may have been in a unique position in which he could transfer the notion of individual portraiture, already current in the Greek world, and at the same time wield the dynastic power of an Achaemenid dynasty who could issue his own coins and illustrate them as he wished. [50] From the time of Alexander the Great, portraiture of the issuing ruler would then become a standard, generalized, feature of coinage. [45]

Coin of Themistocles as Governor of Magnesia. Obv: Barley grain. Rev: Possible portrait of Themistocles. Circa 465–459 BC. [51]

Portrait of Lycian ruler Kherei wearing the Persian cap on the reverse of his coins (ruled 410–390 BCE).

Portrait of Lycian ruler Erbbina wearing the Persian cap on the reverse of his coins (ruled 390–380 BCE).

Portrait of Lycian ruler Perikles facing (ruled 380-360 BCE).

Chinese round coins (350 BCE

In China, early round coins appeared in the 4th century BCE and were adopted for all China by Emperor Qin Shi Huang Di at the end of 3rd century BCE. [52] The round coin, the precursor of the familiar cash coin, circulated in both the spade and knife money areas in the Zhou period, from around 350 BCE. Apart from two small and presumably late coins from the State of Qin, coins from the spade money area have a round hole and refer to the jin and liang units. Those from the knife money area have a square hole and are denominated in hua (化).

Although for discussion purposes the Zhou coins are divided up into categories of knives, spades, and round coins, it is apparent from archaeological finds that most of the various kinds circulated together. A hoard found in 1981, near Hebi in north Henan province, consisted of: 3,537 Gong spades, 3 Anyi arched foot spades, 8 Liang Dang Lie spades, 18 Liang square foot spades and 1,180 Yuan round coins, all contained in three clay jars.

Hellenistic period (320 BCE – 30 CE) Edit

The Hellenistic period was characterized by the spread of Greek culture across a large part of the known world. Greek-speaking kingdoms were established in Egypt and Syria, and for a time also in Iran and as far east as what is now Afghanistan and northwestern India. Greek traders spread Greek coins across this vast area, and the new kingdoms soon began to produce their own coins. Because these kingdoms were much larger and wealthier than the Greek city states of the classical period, their coins tended to be more mass-produced, as well as larger, and more frequently in gold. They often lacked the aesthetic delicacy of coins of the earlier period.

Still, some of the Greco-Bactrian coins, and those of their successors in India, the Indo-Greeks, are considered the finest examples of Greek numismatic art with "a nice blend of realism and idealization", including the largest coins to be minted in the Hellenistic world: the largest gold coin was minted by Eucratides (reigned 171–145 BCE), the largest silver coin by the Indo-Greek king Amyntas Nikator (reigned c. 95–90 BCE). The portraits "show a degree of individuality never matched by the often bland depictions of their royal contemporaries further West" (Roger Ling, "Greece and the Hellenistic World").

Bilingual coin of Indo-Greek king Antialcidas (105–95 BCE).

Bilingual coin of Agathocles of Bactria with Hindu deities, circa 180 BCE.

Roman period (290 BCE

O: Bearded head of Mars with Corinthian helmet left. R: Horse head right, grain ear behind.
The first Roman silver coin, 281 BCE. Crawford 13/1

Coinage followed Greek colonization and influence first around the Mediterranean and soon after to North Africa (including Egypt), Syria, Persia, and the Balkans. [54] Coins came late to the Roman Republic compared with the rest of the Mediterranean, especially Greece and Asia Minor where coins were invented in the 7th century BCE. The currency of central Italy was influenced by its natural resources, with bronze being abundant (the Etruscans were famous metal workers in bronze and iron) and silver ore being scarce. The coinage of the Roman Republic started with a few silver coins apparently devised for trade with Celtic in northern Italy and the Greek colonies in Southern Italy, and heavy cast bronze pieces for use in Central Italy. The first Roman coins, which were crude, heavy cast bronzes, were issued c. 289 BCE. [55] Amisano, in a general publication, including the Etruscan coinage, attributing it the beginning to about 550 BCE in Populonia, a chronology that would leave out the contribution of the Greeks of Magna Graecia and attribute to the Etruscans the burden of introducing the coin in Italy. In this work, constant reference is made to classical sources, and credit is given to the origin of the Etruscan Lydia, a source supported by Herodotus, and also to the invention of coin in Lydia. [43]

Set of three Roman aurei depicting the rulers of the Flavian dynasty. Top to bottom: Vespasian, Titus and Domitian, 69-96 CE

Silver Drachma of Mehrdad (Mithridates I) of Persian Empire of Parthia, 165 BCE

Middle Ages Edit

The first European coin to use Arabic numerals to date the year in which the coin was minted was the St. Gall silver Plappart of 1424. [56]

Lombardic Tremissis depicting Saint Michael, 688-700 CE

Silver coin of Borandukht of Persian Sassanian Empire, 629 CE

Silver Dirham of the Umayyad Caliphate, 729 CE minted by using Persian Sassanian framework

Japanese local currency Genbun Inari Koban Kin, c. 1736–1741

1768 silver Spanish Dollar, or eight reales coin (the “piece of eight” of pirate fame), minted throughout the Spanish Empire

One Rupee coin issued by the East India Company, 1835

Silver coin of the Bengal Sultanate ruler Jalaluddin Muhammad

Currency Edit

Most coins presently are made of a base metal, and their value comes from their status as fiat money. This means that the value of the coin is decreed by government fiat (law), and thus is determined by the free market only in as much as national currencies are used in domestic trade and also traded internationally on foreign exchange markets. Thus, these coins are monetary tokens, just as paper currency is: they are usually not backed by metal, but rather by some form of government guarantee. Some have suggested that such coins not be considered to be "true coins" (see below). Thus, there is very little economic difference between notes and coins of equivalent face value.

Coins may be in circulation with fiat values lower than the value of their component metals, but they are never initially issued with such value, and the shortfall only arises over time due to inflation, as market values for the metal overtake the fiat declared face value of the coin. Examples are the pre-1965 US dime, quarter, half dollar, and dollar (nominally containing slightly less than a tenth, quarter, half, and full ounce of silver, respectively), US nickel, and pre-1982 US penny. As a result of the increase in the value of copper, the United States greatly reduced the amount of copper in each penny. Since mid-1982, United States pennies are made of 97.5% zinc, with the remaining 2.5% being a coating of copper. Extreme differences between fiat values and metal values of coins cause coins to be hoarded or removed from circulation by illicit smelters in order to realize the value of their metal content. This is an example of Gresham's law. The United States Mint, in an attempt to avoid this, implemented new interim rules on December 14, 2006, subject to public comment for 30 days, which criminalized the melting and export of pennies and nickels. [57] Violators can be fined up to $10,000 and/or imprisoned for up to five years.

Collector's items Edit

A coin's value as a collector's item or as an investment generally depends on its condition, specific historical significance, rarity, quality, beauty of the design and general popularity with collectors. If a coin is greatly lacking in all of these, it is unlikely to be worth much. The value of bullion coins is also influenced to some extent by those factors, but is largely based on the value of their gold, silver, or platinum content. Sometimes non-monetized bullion coins such as the Canadian Maple Leaf and the American Gold Eagle are minted with nominal face values less than the value of the metal in them, but as such coins are never intended for circulation, these face values have no relevance.

Collector catalogs often include information about coins to assists collectors with identifying and grading. Additional resources can be found online for collectors These are collector clubs, collection management tools, marketplaces, [58] trading platforms, and forums,

Media of expression Edit

Coins can be used as creative media of expression – from fine art sculpture to the penny machines that can be found in most amusement parks. In the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) in the United States there are some regulations specific to nickels and pennies that are informative on this topic. 31 CFR § 82.1 forbids unauthorized persons from exporting, melting, or treating any 5 or 1 cent coins. [59]

This has been a particular problem with nickels and dimes (and with some comparable coins in other currencies) because of their relatively low face value and unstable commodity prices. For a while, [ when? ] the copper in US pennies was worth more than one cent, so people would hoard pennies and then melt them down for their metal value. It cost more than face value to manufacture pennies or nickels, so any widespread loss of the coins in circulation could be expensive for the US Treasury. This was more of a problem when coins were still made of precious metals like silver and gold, so strict laws against alteration make more sense historically. [ citation needed ]

31 CFR § 82.2(b) goes on to state that: "The prohibition contained in § 82.1 against the treatment of 5-cent coins and one-cent coins shall not apply to the treatment of these coins for educational, amusement, novelty, jewelry, and similar purposes as long as the volumes treated and the nature of the treatment makes it clear that such treatment is not intended as a means by which to profit solely from the value of the metal content of the coins." [60]

Throughout history, monarchs and governments have often created more coinage than their supply of precious metals would allow if the coins were pure metal. By replacing some fraction of a coin's precious metal content with a base metal (often copper or nickel), the intrinsic value of each individual coin was reduced (thereby "debasing" the money), allowing the coining authority to produce more coins than would otherwise be possible. Debasement occasionally occurs in order to make the coin physically harder and therefore less likely to be worn down as quickly, but the more usual reason is to profit from the difference between face value and metal value. Debasement of money almost always leads to price inflation. Sometimes price controls are at the same time also instituted by the governing authority, but historically these have generally proved unworkable.

The United States is unusual in that it has only slightly modified its coinage system (except for the images and symbols on the coins, which have changed a number of times) to accommodate two centuries of inflation. The one-cent coin has changed little since 1856 (though its composition was changed in 1982 to remove virtually all copper from the coin) and still remains in circulation, despite a greatly reduced purchasing power. On the other end of the spectrum, the largest coin in common circulation is valued at 25 cents, a very low value for the largest denomination coin compared to many other countries. Increases in the prices of copper, nickel, and zinc meant that both the US one- and five-cent coins became worth more for their raw metal content than their face (fiat) value. In particular, copper one-cent pieces (those dated prior to 1982 and some 1982-dated coins) contained about two cents' worth of copper.

Some denominations of circulating coins that were formerly minted in the United States are no longer made. These include coins with a face value of a half cent, two cents, three cents, and twenty cents. (The half dollar and dollar coins are still produced, but mostly for vending machines and collectors.) In the past, the US also coined the following denominations for circulation in gold: One dollar, $2.50, three dollars, five dollars, ten dollars, and twenty dollars. In addition, cents were originally slightly larger than the modern quarter and weighed nearly half an ounce, while five-cent coins (known then as "half dimes") were smaller than a dime and made of a silver alloy. Dollar coins were also much larger, and weighed approximately an ounce. One-dollar gold coins are no longer produced and rarely used. The US also issues bullion and commemorative coins with the following denominations: 50¢, $1, $5, $10, $25, $50, and $100.

Circulating coins commonly suffered from "shaving" or "clipping": the public would cut off small amounts of precious metal from their edges to sell it and then pass on the mutilated coins at full value. [61] Unmilled British sterling silver coins were sometimes reduced to almost half their minted weight. This form of debasement in Tudor England was commented on by Sir Thomas Gresham, whose name was later attached to Gresham's law. The monarch would have to periodically recall circulating coins, paying only the bullion value of the silver, and reminting them. This, also known as recoinage, is a long and difficult process that was done only occasionally. [62] Many coins have milled or reeded edges, originally designed to make it easier to detect clipping.

Some convicted criminals from the British Isles who were sentenced to transportation to Australia in the 18th and 19th centuries used coins to leave messages of remembrance to loved ones left behind in Britain. The coins were defaced, smoothed and inscribed, either by stippling or engraving, with sometimes touching words of loss. These coins were called "convict love tokens" or "leaden hearts". [63] A number of these tokens are in the collection of the National Museum of Australia.


9. The Nero Port Of Ostia Sestertius, 64 AD

Rome was the largest city the ancient world had ever known. Yet it was located inland on the Tiber river and had no natural harbor nearby on the coast. This presented an increasingly urgent problem. As the city’s population continued to grow, the need to import grain and goods to support the population grew as well.

A great famine during the reign of Emperor Claudius led him to begin an ambitious engineering project to construct a massive harbor at the Port of Ostia, which sat at the mouth of the Tiber river. Unfortunately, Claudius didn’t live to see the completion of the project. The harbor was completed in 64 AD during the reign of Emperor Nero.

This sestertius bears a bust of Nero on the front and an overview of the new harbor with a reclining image of the river god Tiber on the back. The ships on the back are drawn in fine detail.


Watch the video: Who made the first coins? (May 2022).