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Ancient Greece (Attica, Athens) 454 ~ 405BC Silver Tetradrachm Kroll# 8 good VF

Ancient Greece (Attica, Athens) 454 ~ 405BC Silver Tetradrachm Kroll# 8 good VF

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A handsome example of one of the most famous coins of the ancient era.

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Ancient Greece (Attica, Athens) 454 ~ 405BC Silver Tetradrachm Kroll# 8 good VF

Region: Attica, Athens

Period: 454~405BC

Diameter: 23mm; Weight: 17.17g

Obverse description: Head of Athena to right, wearing disc earring, pearl necklace and a crested Attic helmet adorned with three olive leaves and a pi-style palmette

Reverse description: Owl standing to right, head facing the viewer, olive sprig with berry and crescent moon in upper left field, all within incuse square.

Reverse legend: ΑΘΕ (Abbreviation for ΑΘΗΝΑΙΩΝ)

Translated legend: “Of the Athenians"

References: Kroll 8

Quality Grade: good VF

Wonderful obverse style.

The Athenian "Owl" is widely acknowledged as being one of the most important coins ever struck anywhere in the world. At the time this particular coin was in circulation,  Athens was regarded as the educational and cultural center of the ancient Greek world.

Athenian silver coinage circulated widely throughout the ancient world, "Owls" such as this one were accepted in trade with confidence in cities quite far from the centre of Athens. "Owls" would have been handled by such notables as Pythagoras, Xenophanes, Democritus, Hippocrates, Socrates, Plato, Aristotle, Euclid, Archimedes, and others whose thinking formed the very foundation of Western civilization.

The designs featured on either side of the owls speak to the mythology of Athens. As the goddess of warfare and wisdom, Athena was the patron goddess of Athens. The owl was Athena's companion or representative, and to this day is used as a symbol of knowledge and wisdom throughout the Western world.

An "Owl" of Athens is essential to any "type" set of ancient coinage, and is a perfect representation of the wealth, leadership and respect that Athens had in the Greek world at the height of it's power.