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

Ancient Coins of Cyprus

Hunter-gatherers were active on Cyprus from around 10,000 B.C. and settled village communities date from 8200 B.C. Water wells found in Cyprus are among the oldest in the world, about 10,000 years old. Mycenaean Greek traders started visiting Cyprus around 1400 B.C. A major wave of Greek settlement followed the collapse of Mycenaean Greece, from 1100 to 1050 B.C. The island's predominantly Greek character dates from this period. In Greek Mythology, Cyprus is the birthplace of Aphrodite and Adonis, and home to King Cinyras, Teucer and Pygmalion. Cyprus also had an early Phoenician presence. Kition was under Tyrian rule at the beginning of the 10th century B.C. Assyria ruled the island for a century from 708 B.C., before a brief spell under Egyptian rule and eventually Persian rule in 545 B.C. The Cypriots joined their fellow Greeks in the Ionian cities during the unsuccessful Ionian Revolt against the Persian Empire in 499 B.C. The revolt was suppressed, but Cyprus managed to maintain a high degree of autonomy and remained inclined towards the Greek world. Alexander the Great took Cyprus in 333 B.C. Following his death, Cyprus became part of Ptolemaic Egypt. It was during this period that the island was fully Hellenized.

Ptolemaic Kingdom of Egypt, Ptolemy III Euergetes, 246 - 222 B.C.

|Ptolemaic| |Egypt|, |Ptolemaic| |Kingdom| |of| |Egypt,| |Ptolemy| |III| |Euergetes,| |246| |-| |222| |B.C.||hemiobol|
Ptolemy III Euergetes was the third ruler of the Ptolemaic dynasty in Egypt. He promoted the translation of Jewish scriptures into Greek as the Septuagint. Due to a falling out at the Seleucid court, his eldest sister Berenice Phernophorus was murdered along with her infant son. In response, he invaded Syria, occupied Antioch, and even reached Babylon. This war, the Third Syrian War, is cryptically alluded to in Daniel XI 7-9. The Ptolemaic kingdom reached the height of its power during his reign.
GP111048. Bronze hemiobol, Lorber CPE B449; Svoronos 1007; Weiser 109; SNG Cop 646; SNG Milan 201; BMC Ptolemies p. 52, 60; SGCV II 7824, Choice gVF, green patina, well centered, central dimples, obv. edge beveled, weight 6.547 g, maximum diameter 19.5 mm, die axis 0o, Cyprus, Paphos mint, 246 - 222 B.C.; obverse horned head of Zeus-Ammon right, wearing diadem and basileion; reverse ΠTOΛEMAIOY BAΣIΛEΩΣ, cult-statue of Aphrodite standing facing on base, wearing chiton and polos, holding lotus blossom to breast with right hand, poppies or myrtle branches in left hand; $200.00 SALE PRICE $180.00


Macedonian Kingdom, Alexander the Great, 336 - 323 B.C., Kition, Cyprus

|Alexander| |the| |Great|, |Macedonian| |Kingdom,| |Alexander| |the| |Great,| |336| |-| |323| |B.C.,| |Kition,| |Cyprus||quarter| |unit|
Kition, also known by its Latin name Citium, was a city-kingdom on the southern coast of Cyprus (present-day Larnaca). According to local tradition, it was established in the 13th century B.C. by Greek (Achaean) settlers, after the Trojan war. Its most famous resident was Zeno of Citium, born c. 334 B.C. in Citium and founder of the Stoic school of philosophy which he taught in Athens from about 300 B.C.
GB111031. Bronze quarter unit, Price 3111A; cf. Tziambazis 6 (full unit); BMC Cyprus -, VF, glossy green patina, tight flan, weight 1.289 g, maximum diameter 11.4 mm, die axis 180o, Kition (Larnaca, Cyprus) mint, c. 325 - 320 B.C.; obverse head of Herakles right, wearing Nemean Lion skin, scalp over head, forepaws tied at neck; reverse bow and quiver on left, AΛEΞANΔPOY downward in center, knobby club with handle up on right, uncertain device outer left; very rare; $110.00 SALE PRICE $99.00


Ptolemaic Kingdom of Egypt, Cleopatra VII Thea Philopator, 51 - 30 B.C., Paphos, Cyprus

|Cleopatra| |VII|, |Ptolemaic| |Kingdom| |of| |Egypt,| |Cleopatra| |VII| |Thea| |Philopator,| |51| |-| |30| |B.C.,| |Paphos,| |Cyprus||1/4| |obol|
Kreuzer, in his book The Coinage System of Cleopatra VII and Augustus in Cyprus, assembles evidence dating this type to Cleopatra VII instead of the reign of Ptolemy IV used in older references.
GP110629. Bronze 1/4 obol, Kreuzer p. 44, first illustration; Svoronos 1160 (Ptolemy IV); SNG Cop 649; Weiser -, F, weight 1.297 g, maximum diameter 11.4 mm, die axis 0o, Paphos mint, obverse diademed bust of Cleopatra VII as Isis right, hair in melon-coiffure; reverse ΠTOΛEMAIOY - BAΣIΛEΩΣ, double cornucopia flanked by ribbons; $100.00 SALE PRICE $90.00


Ptolemaic Kingdom of Egypt, Cleopatra VII Thea Philopator, 51 - 30 B.C., Paphos, Cyprus

|Cleopatra| |VII|, |Ptolemaic| |Kingdom| |of| |Egypt,| |Cleopatra| |VII| |Thea| |Philopator,| |51| |-| |30| |B.C.,| |Paphos,| |Cyprus||1/4| |obol|
Kreuzer, in his book The Coinage System of Cleopatra VII and Augustus in Cyprus, assembles evidence dating this type to Cleopatra VII instead of the reign of Ptolemy IV used in older references.
GP111778. Bronze 1/4 obol, Kreuzer p. 44, first illustration; Svoronos 1160 (Ptolemy IV); SNG Cop 649; Weiser -, F, dark green patina, porous, obv. edge beveled, weight 2.232 g, maximum diameter 13.1 mm, die axis 0o, Paphos mint, obverse diademed bust Isis (Cleopatra as Isis?) right, hair in melon-coiffure; reverse ΠTOΛEMAIOY - BAΣIΛEΩΣ, double cornucopia flanked by ribbons; $100.00 SALE PRICE $90.00


Ptolemaic Kingdom of Egypt, Ptolemy IX - Ptolemy XII, 99 - 58 B.C.

|Cyprus|, |Ptolemaic| |Kingdom| |of| |Egypt,| |Ptolemy| |IX| |-| |Ptolemy| |XII,| |99| |-| |58| |B.C.||dichalkon|
The Paphos II finds were excavated at the House of Dionysos in Paphos.
GB95763. Bronze dichalkon, Paphos II 383 - 385, otherwise unpublished, F, dark green patina with earthen highlighting, scratches, porosity, edge cracks, beveled obverse edge, sprue remnants, weight 2.044 g, maximum diameter 14.1 mm, die axis 0o, Cyprus, Paphos mint, 88 - 58 B.C.; obverse diademed and horned bust of Zeus Ammon right; reverse ΠTOΛEMAIOY BAΣIΛEΩΣ (King Ptolemy), single cornucopia bound with fillet; ; rare; $90.00 SALE PRICE $81.00


A Catalogue of the Coins of Cyprus (560 B.C. to 1571 A.D.)

|Numismatic| |Books|, |A| |Catalogue| |of| |the| |Coins| |of| |Cyprus| |(560| |B.C.| |to| |1571| |A.D.)|
A compilation of a large variety of Cypriot coins dating back to the archaic and classical city-kingdoms and progressing through Hellenistic, Roman, Byzantine, Frankish and Venetian periods.
BK22331. A Catalogue of the Coins of Cyprus, Roman (560 B.C. to 1571 A.D.) by Elias Tziambazis, 2002, paperback, 89 pages, new, shelf age and wear, cover marks; $24.00 SALE PRICE $21.60







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REFERENCES

Babelon, E. Trait des Monnaies Grecques et Romaines. (Paris, 1901-1932).
Brett, A. Catalogue of Greek Coins, Boston Museum of Fine Arts. (Boston, 1955).
Burnett, A., M. Amandry, et al. Roman Provincial Coinage. (1992 - ).
Cox, D. Coins from the Excavations at Curium, 1932-1953. ANSNNM 145. (New York, 1959).
Destrooper-Georgiades, A. "Le dbuts du monnayage en bronze Chypre" in NC 168. (2008).
Destrooper-Georgiades, A. "Le monnayage de Paphos au IVe sicle, nouvelles perspectives" in XIII Congreso. (Madrid, 2005).
Destrooper-Georgiades, A. & A. Symeonides. "Classical Coin in the Symeonides Collection. The coin circulation in Marion during the 5th and 4th centuries" in RDAC 1998, pp. 111 - 136.
Forrer, L. Descriptive Catalogue of the Collection of Greek Coins formed by Sir Hermann Weber, Volume III, Part 2. (London, 1929).
Hill, G. A Catalog of the Greek Coins in the British Museum, Greek Coins of Cyprus. (London, 1904).
Kreuzer, M. The Coinage System of Cleopatra VII, Marc Antony and Augustus in Cyprus. (Springfield, MA, 2004).
Dikaios, P. "A hoard of silver Cypriot states from Larnaca" in NC 1935.
Lindgren, H. & F. Kovacs. Ancient Bronze Coins of Asia Minor and the Levant. (San Mateo, 1985).
Lindgren, H. Lindgren III: Ancient Greek Bronze Coins. (Quarryville, 1993).
May, J. "The Alexander coinage of Nikoles of Paphos, with a note on some recently identified tetradrachms from the Demanhur find" in NC 1952, pp. 1-18, pl. 1.
Michaelidou, L., ed. Museum of the History of Cypriot Coinage, Coin Catalogue. Bank of Cyprus Cultural Foundation. (Nicosia, 1996).
Michaelidou, L. & E. Zapiti. Coins of Cyprus. From the Collection of the Bank of Cyprus Cultural Foundation. (Nicosia, 2008).
Newell, E. "Some Cypriot 'Alexanders'" in NC 15 (London, 1915), pp. 294 - 322.
Nicolaou, I. Paphos II. The Coins from the House of Dionysos. Department of Antiquities Cyprus. (Nicosia, 1990).
Pitchfork, C. The Jon Hosking Collection of Ptolemaic Coins. Nicholson Museum, University of Sydney. (Sydney, 2000).
Polk, R. A Catalog of the Greek Coins in the British Museum, the Ptolemies, Kings of Egypt. (London, 1882).
Price, M. The Coinage of in the Name of Alexander the Great and Philip Arrhidaeus. (London, 1991).
Price, M. & N. Waggoner. Archaic Greek Silver Coinage, The "Asyut" Hoard. (London, 1975).
RPC Online - http://rpc.ashmus.ox.ac.uk/coins/
Sear, D. Greek Coins and Their Values, Vol. 2: Asia and Africa. (London, 1979).
Sear, D. Greek Imperial Coins and Their Values. (London, 1982).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Denmark, The Royal Collection of Coins and Medals, Danish National Museum, Vol. 7: Cyprus to India. (West Milford, NJ, 1982).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Deutschland, Sammlung Hans Von Aulock, Vol. 3. (Berlin, 1964).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Great Britain XII, The Hunterian Museum, Univ. of Glasgow, Part 2: Roman Provincial Coins: Cyprus-Egypt. (Oxford, 2008).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Italy, Milano XIII, Civiche Raccolte Numismatiche, Aegyptus. (Milan, 1989).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Turkey 1: The Muharrem Kayhan Collection. (Istanbul, 2002).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, United States, Burton Y. Berry. Part 2. Megaris to Egypt.. (New York, 1962).
Svoronos, J. Ta Nomismata tou Kratous ton Ptolemaion. (Athens, 1904-08).
Tziambazis, E. A Catalogue of the Coins of Cyprus (from 560 B.C. to 1571 A.D.). (Larnaca, 2002).
Waggoner, N. Early Greek Coins from the Collection of Jonathan P. Rosen. ANS ACNAC 5. (New York, 1983).

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