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Philippi, Macedonia


Historia Numorum

Philippi. As early as the sixth century B.C. the Thasians possessed a mining settlement on the mainland of Thrace, called Daton, a district which extended inland as far as the springs called Crenides. Subsequently the Pangaean tribes expelled the Thasians, but in B.C. 361 the Athenian orator Callistratus refounded the colony of Daton at Crenides with the assistance of a number of Thasians. Gold and bronze coins were now issued at the revived colony with the inscription QASION HPEIRO, obv. Head of Herakles, rev. Tripod (Mion. I. 433, and Suppl. II. Pl. VIII. 5; Berl. Cat., II. 120). In B.C. 358 Philip made himself master of the district with its rich mines, renamed the town after himself, Philippi, and allowed it the privilege of striking money identical in type with the Thasian coins above described, but with the legend FILLIPWN, AV Staters 133 grs., AR Phoenician tetradrachms, 215 grs.; drachms, hemidrachms, and size .7-.65 (B. M. C., Mac., p. 96 f.; Berl. Cat., II. 118; Sotheby, Sale Cat., May, 1904, Lot 47). Before the end of Philip's reign Philippi was deprived of the right of striking money in its own name, but it remained a royal mint under Philip and his successors, if the tripod, which is a common symbol on the coins of the kings of Macedon, may be accepted as a mint-mark of Philippi.

From the Roman conquest to the time of Augustus no coins appear to have been struck at Philippi with the legend FILLIPWN. It was not until after the battle of Philippi that the right of coinage was conferred upon the veterans of the Praetorian cohort whom Augustus settled at Philippi. The legends of the coins of this series are in Latin, COHOR. PRAE. PHIL.; COL. AVG. IVL. PHIL. IVSSV. AVG.; COL. AVG. IVL. PHILIP; COL. PHILIP; COL. AVG. IVL. V. PHILIPP.; A. I. C. V. P., etc. Colonia Augusta Iulia Victrix Philippensium. For the types see B. M. C., Mac., pp. xlvi and 98, and Berl. Cat., II. p. 121 f.


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