Many ancient coins depict the gods and goddesses of the Greeks, Romans and other ancient cultures. Collecting as many different gods and goddesses as possible is a fun, educational and affordable collecting theme. Every ancient gods and goddesses has their mythical function, biography, lineage and other facts and fictions that make them interesting. Here we will present as many different gods and goddesses as we can and provide some of the stories about them that fascinate us. We hope they fascinate you too.
Carinus, First Half 283 - Spring 285 A.D., Roman Provincial Egypt
Elpis was the Greek personification of Hope. According the Hesiod's famous story, Elpis was the last to escape the Pandora's box. It can be debated whether she was really about "hope" as we understand it, or rather mere "expectation." In art, Elpis is normally depicted carrying flowers or a cornucopia, but on coins she is almost invariably depicted holding a flower in her extended right, while the left is raising a fold of her dress. Elpis's Roman equivalent was Spes. She was also named "ultima dea" - the last resort of men.
RX42517. Billontetradrachm, Milne 4701; Geissen 3177; Curtis 1917; Dattari 5584; SNG Cop 952; BMC Alexandria 2454; Kampmann 115.10; Emmett 4007, VF, weight 7.037 g, maximum diameter 18.7 mm, die axis 0o, Alexandria mint, 29 Aug 283 - 28 Aug 284 A.D.; obverse A K M A KAPINOC CEB, laureate and cuirassedbust right; reverseElpis standing left, holding flower and raising fold of dress, date L - B (year 2) across field; $36.00 (€27.00)
Brundisium, Calabria, Italy, 217 - 212 B.C.
Although one legend has Taras himself as the founder of the Taranto, in another Phalanthos was a divine hero who led the Spartan Partheniae and founded the city. Strabo tells us that Phalanthos died and was buried at Brundisium, explaining the significance of the dolphin-rider on coins of the city. In 244, Brundisium became a Latin colony.
SH69316. Bronze uncia, SNG ANS 780, SNG Paris 1480, SNG München 554, HN Italy 738, aF, rough, weight 7.181 g, maximum diameter 21.3 mm, die axis 0o, Brundisium mint, 217 - 212 B.C.; obverse laureate head of Poseidon right, Nike offering wreath above trident behind, large pellet (mark of value) below; reverse Phalanthus riding dolphin left, Nike offering wreath in right, cornucopia in left, club behind on right, BR-VN and globe below; scarce; $36.00 (€27.00)