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Ancient Greek Nomos - Taras (Boy on dolphin)

Ancient Greek Nomos - Taras (Boy on dolphin)


                               Tarentum. Calabria. ca 272-240BC. AR Nomos. Nude youth on horseback left, placing wreath on horse’s head; ΣY above, ΛYKI-NOΣ  in two lines below / TAPAΣ below, Taras astride dolphin left, hurling trident held overhead in right hand, Chlamys wrapped around left arm; owl behind. One of the most interesting of all "foundation mythologies", a myth that describes the circumstances about the founding of a particular city, is that of the southern city of Taras. This city was originally populated by people from ther Greek city of Sparta, but was founded with the help of the gods. the myth is as follows:

      A boy named Taras who was a son of Poseidon, the Greek god of the oceans, was shipwrecked and saved by a friendly dolphin that took him to shore upon his back. To commemorate the amazing rescue, Taras founded a city at the place where they landed.

 This foundation myth is illustrated on this coin by the image of young Taras riding on the dolphin's back holding a cornucopia and a flower. A thymiaterion (incence burner) can be seen in the field behind him. The people of Taras were also fond of horses, which is why there is a youth on horseback on the reverse side of the coin.

SKU H-ID11977
Our price $2,995.00
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