AR Drachm. 2.24g, 14.7mm
MINTED: CORINTHIA, Corinth, circa 347-307 BC
REF: cf. BCD Corinth 174; HGC 4, 1870
OBVERSE: Pegasos flying left.
REVERSE: Head of Aphrodite right, hair in sakkos; monogram behind.
Fine. Dark cabinet toning. Small gouge on obverse.
The city of Corinth was founded around 900 BC by Dorian Greek colonists taking over an earlier Mycenaean settlement. Two excellent harbours allowed Corinth to profit greatly from maritime trade, and from their high akropolis behind the defenses of the city's fortified walls, the Corinthians commanded the strategic Isthmus of Corinth, the narrow passage between the Ionian and Aegean Seas. Beginning in the 8th century BC, Corinth sent out their own colonists who founded a number important Greek colonies, including Korkyra, Syracuse, Apollonia, Leukas, and others.
By the 5th century BC, the city had a population of about 100,000, and in terms of political power and prominence, it was second only to Athens. It was therefore perhaps inevitable that the Corinthians came into increasingly heated conflict with the Athenians. When the Peloponnesian War (431–404 BC) broke out, Corinth eagerly allied itself with Sparta against the hated Athenians and their Delian League. After the war, however, Corinth fell out with Sparta and remained independent until Philip II of Macedonia's conquest of Greece.
The coinage of Corinth, in particular its silver staters, were a symbol of the city's wealth and prestige. Wo widely used and well known in ancients times were they that were often referred to simply as pegasoi, or "colts". Depicted on the coin is the badge of the city, the mythological winged horse, Pegasos, which was tamed when it stopped to drink by a spring at the akropolis of Corinth, by the legendary Greek hero Bellerophon, who was the son of Glaucus, the Corinthian king.
CORINTHIA, Corinth . 347-307 BC . AR Drachm . Pegasos & Aphrodite
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