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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ |Greek Coins| ▸ |Geographic - All Periods| ▸ |Greece| ▸ |Thessaly||View Options:  |  |  | 

Thessaly, Greece

Thessaly was home to extensive Neolithic and Chalcolithic cultures around 6000 B.C. - 2500 B.C. Mycenaean settlements have also been discovered. In Archaic and Classical times, the lowlands of Thessaly became the home of baronial families, such as the Aleuadae of Larissa or the Scopads of Krannon. In the 4th century B.C. Jason of Pherae transformed Thessaly into a significant military power. Shortly after, Philip II of Macedon was appointed Archon of Thessaly, and the region was associated with the Macedonian Kingdom for the next centuries. Later Thessaly became part of the Roman province of Macedonia.Thessaly

Larissa, Thessaly, Greece, c. 300 - 150 B.C.

|Thessaly|, |Larissa,| |Thessaly,| |Greece,| |c.| |300| |-| |150| |B.C.||trichalkon|
According to mythology, Larissa was founded by Acrisius, who was killed accidentally by his grandson, Perseus; the nymph Larissa was a daughter of the primordial man Pelasgu; Achilles was born at Larissa, and Hippocrates, the "Father of Medicine"; died there. Today, Larissa is the capital and largest city of the Thessaly region and an important commercial, agricultural, and industrial center of Greece.
GB92063. Bronze trichalkon, BCD Thessaly 1172.1 (same countermark), BCD Thessaly II 394.1 (same countermark), SNG Cop 147, Rogers 309, HGC 4 530 (S), BMC Thessaly -, VF, well centered, attractive dark patina, interesting countermark, some flatness of strike, edge crack, beveled obverse edge; c/m: VF, weight 11.952 g, maximum diameter 22.2 mm, die axis 270o, Larissa mint, c. 300 - 150 B.C.; obverse head of the nymph Larissa right, monogram behind; countermark on cheek: spiked helmet with visor, neck and cheek guards in a c. 6mm oval punch; reverse cavalryman prancing right, wearing spiked helmet, couched lance in right hand, star upper left, ΛA-PI/ΣNΩN divided above and below; ex Numismatik Lanz München, auction 112 (25 Nov 2002), 193; scarce; $400.00 SALE |PRICE| $360.00
 


Thessalian League, Thessaly, Greece, c. 170 B.C.

|Thessaly|, |Thessalian| |League,| |Thessaly,| |Greece,| |c.| |170| |B.C.||chalkous|
The object on the reverse was long considered somewhat mysterious. Roger identified it as a lyre. Robinson suggested a diadem or more probably a sling. Warren argued it is a stylized depiction of a dart sling, or Kestrosphendone, a weapon first introduced during the Third Macedonian War between Rome and Perseus of Macedon. Warren suggests this type was struck at Demetrias in Magnesia, under orders from Perseus, to commemorate the success of the weapon.
GB96459. Bronze chalkous, Warren, "Two Notes," NC 1961, pl. I, 11; BCD Thessaly II 24.2; HGC 4 236; Rogers 4 var., gVF, well centered, nice green patina, light earthen deposits, marks, weight 3.065 g, maximum diameter 14.8 mm, Magnesia, Demetrias (near Volos, Greece) mint, c. 170 B.C.; obverse Macedonian round shield, pellets and five double arcs/crescents around star in central boss; reverse kestrosphendone (dart sling) with dart inside, ΘEΣΣA/ΛΩN divided in two lines, the first above, ending below; ex David Wray Collection, ex John Jencek; very rare; $225.00 SALE |PRICE| $202.00
 


Larissa, Thessaly, Greece, Late 4th Early - 3rd Century B.C.

|Thessaly|, |Larissa,| |Thessaly,| |Greece,| |Late| |4th| |Early| |-| |3rd| |Century| |B.C.||drachm|
The obverse of most of the coins of Larissa depicted the nymph of the local spring, Larissa, for whom the town was named. The choice was probably inspired by the famous coins of Kimon depicting the Syracusan nymph Arethusa. The reverse usually depicted a horse in various poses. The horse was an appropriate symbol of Thessaly, a land of plains, which was well known for its horses. On other coins, there is a male figure, probably the eponymous hero of the Thessalians, Thessalos.
GS73423. Silver drachm, Lorber Hoard pl. III, 27 (same dies); BCD Thessaly I 1158; BCD Thessaly II 316; SNG Cop 121; HGC 4 454, aF, struck with crude and worn dies, weight 5.808 g, maximum diameter 17.6 mm, die axis 270o, Larissa mint, late 4th early - 3rd century B.C.; obverse head of the nymph Larissa slightly left, wearing ampyx, earring, and simple necklace; reverse horse right; ex BCD Collection with his tag noting, "T/ne ex Thess., total cost (Feb. 87) = 10000 drs."; $115.00 SALE |PRICE| $104.00
 


Kierion, Thessaly, Greece, c. 400 - 344 B.C.

|Thessaly|, |Kierion,| |Thessaly,| |Greece,| |c.| |400| |-| |344| |B.C.||chalkous|
Kierion was originally named Arne for the Nymph on the reverse of this coin. Most references, including BCD, identify the male god on the obverse as Zeus. SNG Cop says Poseidon. Since, according to one myth, Arne became pregnant by Poseidon and bore the twins Aiolos and Boiotos, we think Poseidon is more likely.

This coin has potentially active corrosion. We have had the coin for over a year and it has remained stable and unchanged. It must, however, be stored in a humidity controlled environment.
GB79733. Bronze chalkous, cf. BCD Thessaly II 107.4; Rogers 173a; SNG Cop 35; BMC Thessaly p. 15, 1; SNG Evelpidis 1516; HGC 4 679 (S), VF, well centered, dark patina, corrosion, weight 2.494 g, maximum diameter 15.2 mm, die axis 315o, Kierion mint, c. 400 - 344 B.C.; obverse bearded head of Zeus right, fillet binding his hair; reverse KIEPIEIΩN, the nymph Arne kneeling right on right knee, looking left, her torso bare, leaning on right hand on the ground, tossing astragaloi with left; scarce; $90.00 SALE |PRICE| $81.00
 


Krannon, Thessaly, Greece, 350 - 300 B.C.

|Thessaly|, |Krannon,| |Thessaly,| |Greece,| |350| |-| |300| |B.C.||dichalkon|
In 322 B.C., at Krannon, Thessaly, the Macedonian general Antipater decisively defeated an anti-Macedonian alliance of the Athenians, Aetolians, Thessalians, the Phoceans, the Lokrians and some Peloponnesian states. After the defeat, Athens was forced to abolish its democracy, the leaders responsible for the war were sentenced to death and a Macedonian garrison was stationed at the port of Mounychia.
GB92183. Bronze dichalkon, Rogers 199; BMC Thessaly p. 16, 5 var. (no obv letter); SNG Cop 43 var. (same); SGCV I 2073, aVF, dark patina, minor earthen deposits, weight 4.923 g, maximum diameter 18.1 mm, die axis 180o, Krannon mint, 350 - 300 B.C.; obverse horseman galloping right, wearing petasos and chlamys, K (control symbol) upper left; reverse K-PA/NNO, hydria (water carrying vessel) mounted on cart; ex Frascatius Ancient Coins; ex Gorny & Mosch auction 165 (17 Mar 2008), part of lot 2515; $85.00 SALE |PRICE| $76.50
 


Krannon, Thessaly, Greece, 400 - 344 B.C.

|Thessaly|, |Krannon,| |Thessaly,| |Greece,| |400| |-| |344| |B.C.||AE| |18|
The city of Krannon, named for the son of Poseidon, was located in Thessaly near the source of the river Onchestus. It was the home of the powerful Scopadae family.
GB88315. Bronze AE 18, cf. BMC Thessaly p. 17, 7; BCD Thessaly 1081.1; Rogers 179 ff.; SNG Cop 39 - 40; SGCV I 2075; HGC 4 384 (various ethnic arrangements), gF, dark patina, high points flatly struck, weight 5.044 g, maximum diameter 18.3 mm, die axis 90o, Krannon, Thessaly mint, 400 - 344 B.C.; obverse laureate head of Poseidon right; reverse KPA (or similar), horseman galloping right, wearing petasos and chlamys, trident below; ex Harlan J. Berk, ex Ancient Imports (Marc Breitsprecher); $80.00 SALE |PRICE| $72.00
 


Die Munzpragung von Pharsalos

|Numismatic| |Books|, |Die| |Munzpragung| |von| |Pharsalos|
The coins of Pharsalos, in southern Thessaly, in Greece. Saarbrücken Studies of archeology and ancient history, volume 14. Pharsalos was the only important Thessalian city issuing coins in the fifth century B.C. which was not part of the groups producing Thessalian federal coinage.
BK13159. Die Munzpragung von Pharsalos by Stella Lavva, 2001, in German, 283 pages, new; $70.00 SALE |PRICE| $63.00
 


Metropolis, Thessaly, Greece 3rd Century B.C.

|Thessaly|, |Metropolis,| |Thessaly,| |Greece
3rd| |Century| |B.C.||trichalkon|
The man-faced bull on the coinage of Metropolis is probably Acheloios Pamisos since Metropolis (modern Karditza) is located near the source of the Pamisos River. -- Potamikon: Sinews of Acheloios. A Comprehensive Catalog of the Bronze Coinage of the Man-Faced Bull, With Essays on Origin and Identity by Nicholas J. Molinari & Nicola Sisci
GB85095. Bronze trichalkon, Potamikon 497; BCD Thessaly I 1208.1; BCD Thessaly II 483.1-3; Rogers 411; Pozzi 2828; BMC Thessaly p. 36, 3; HGC 4 257 (S), Fair/Fine, rough, weight 7.229 g, maximum diameter 19.6 mm, die axis 135o, Metropolis (Karditsa, Greece) mint, 3rd century B.C.; obverse laureate head of Apollo right; reverse MHTPOΠOΛITΩN, forepart of river-god Acheloios Pamisos as man-faced bull left, head facing, ribbons hanging from head, Ω/Z monogram (control) below; from the Molinari Collection; scarce; $60.00 SALE |PRICE| $54.00
 







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REFERENCES|

Babelon, E. Traité des Monnaies Grecques et Romaines. (Paris, 1901-1932).
Burnett, A., M. Amandry, et al. Roman Provincial Coinage. (London, 1992 - ).
Burrer, F. Münzprägung und geschichte des thessalischen Bundes in der römischen kaiserzeit bis auf Hadrian (31 v. Chr. - 138 n. Chr.). (Saarbrücken, 1993).
Classical Numismatic Group. The B|C|D Collection of the Coinage of Thessaly. Triton XV Auction. (New York, 3 January 2012).
Forrer, L. Descriptive Catalogue of the Collection of Greek Coins formed by Sir Hermann Weber. (1922 - 1929).
Gardner, P. Catalogue of Greek Coins in the British Museum, Thessaly to Aetolia. (London, 1883).
Grose, S. Catalogue of the McClean Collection of Greek Coins, Fitzwilliam Museum, Vol. II - The Greek mainland, the Aegaean islands, Crete. (Cambridge, 1926).
Herrmann, F. "Die Silbermünzen von Larissa in Thessalien" in ZfN 35 (1925), p. 1-69.
Hoover, O. Handbook of Coins of Northern and Central Greece: Achaia Phthiotis, Ainis, Magnesia, Malis, Oita, Perrhaibia, Thessaly...Sixth to First Centuries BC. HGC 4. (Lancaster/London, 2014).
Kraay, C. Archaic and Classical Greek Coins. (London, 1976).
Liampi, K. "Trikka" in LIMC 8 (Munich, 1992).
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Lindgren, H. Ancient Greek Bronze Coins: European Mints from the Lindgren Collection. (1989).
Lorber, C & C. Shahar. The Silver Facing Head Coins of Larissa. (2005).
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Mildenberg, L. & S. Hurter, eds. The Dewing Collection of Greek Coins. ACNAC 6. (New York, 1985).
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Nomos AG, Auction IV. Coins of Thessaly, The B|C|D| Collection. (Zurich, 10 May 2011).
Papaevangelou-Genakos, C. "Metrological Aspects of the Thessalian Bronze Coinages: The Case of Phalanna" in Obolos 7.
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Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Denmark, The Royal Collection of Coins and Medals, Danish National Museum, Vol. 3: Greece: Thessaly to Aegean Islands. (West Milford, NJ, 1982).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Deutschland, München Staatlische Münzsammlung, Part 12: Thessalien-Illyrien-Epirus-Korkyra. (Berlin, 2007).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Great Britain III, R.C. Lockett Collection, Part 3: Macedonia - Aegina. (London, 1942).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Great Britain V, Ashmolean Museum, Oxford, Part 4: Paeonia - Thessaly. (London. 1981).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Greece 1, Collection Réna H. Evelpidis. Part 1: Italie. Sicile - Thrace. (Athens, 1970). (Italy, Sicily - Thrace).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Greece 3: Collection Antoine Christomanos. (Athens, 2004).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Greece 5: Numismatic Museum, Athens. The A. G. Soutzos Collection. (Athens, 2007).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Greece 6, The Alpha Bank Numismatic Collection, From Thessaly to Euboea. (Athens, 2011).

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