IONIA, Smyrna

AE20 (Homereion). 8.07g, 20.2mm
MINTED: IONIA, Smyrna, circa 105-95 BC
REF: cf. SNG Cop 1157
OBVERSE: Laureate head of Apollo right.

REVERSE: ΣΜΥΡΝΑΙΩΝ, the poet Homer seated left, holding scroll, magistrate's name in two lines to left.




Interesting type featuring the poet Homer on the reverse.


Historical Notes:

Smyrna (modern day Izmir in Turkey) was an ancient and important city on the Ionian coast inhabited by Greeks as early as the 11th century BC.  During the 6th century BC, it was captured first by King Alyattes of Lydia, and then by the Persians, both of them destroyed large parts of the city.  Some centuries later, Alexander the Great was said to have drawn up new designs for the city and begun work on its reconstruction.  From that period and well into the Roman era, Smyrna prospered both as a port as well as a production centre for textiles, wine, and perfumes and prawns.  Smyrna was one of a number of cities that claimed to be the birthplace of the legendary poet Homer.  On visiting Smyrna in the late 1st century BC, geographer and historian Strabo noted the shrine there dedicated to Homer and their bronze coins which they named after him.

IONIA, Smyrna . 105-95 BC . AE20 . The Legendary Poet Homer

SKU: 1507
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