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THE BEGINNING OF BRONZE COINAGE IN KARIA AND LYKIA 1

The Beginning of Bronze Coinage

in Karia and Lykia

R.H.J. ASHTON 1

PLATES 1-5

A. KARIA

MOST of the early bronze issues of Karia discussed below weigh between 0.5 and 1.5 grams

and range in diameter from 8 to 12mm, the earliest coins tending to be smaller than the later.

For the sake of convenience I call all these coins chalkoi on the provisional assumption that

the earliest issues were experimental in nature, were found to be inconveniently small, and

were replaced by issues of slightly larger module. The assumption is far from proven.

The earliest datable bronze coinage from Karia is a rare issue from Kamiros on Rhodes

of just over a gram in weight and about 9-10mm in diameter, with the characteristic fi g leaf

on the obverse and a four-spoke wheel and an abbreviated ethnic on the reverse (Pl. 1, 1:

9mm, 1.27g; BMC 15). These bronzes probably belong before the physical synoecism of

Rhodes in 408/7 when, one assumes, the three old cities of the island ceased striking coins

altogether. One could of course suggest that, since Lindos, Ialysos and Kamiros retained a

considerable degree of local autonomy after the establishment of the new city of Rhodes in

408/7, 2 they might have been allowed to strike their own bronze, as opposed to silver, coinage,

but this hypothesis seems neither necessary nor economical. Given that other bronzes from

western Asia Minor certainly antedate 400 BC, 3 it would be no surprise if Kamiros struck

bronze before 408 BC, particularly as the Rhodians had long-established ties with Sicily

where bronze coinage had been in use since the third quarter of the fi fth century, including at

Akragas, a colony of Gela, which in turn had been a colony of Rhodes. 4

The newly founded federal city of Rhodes itself struck chalkoi of similar size to accompany

its earliest silver coinage in the late fi fth to early fourth century, with types head of the nymph

Rhodos and a rose. However the great bulk of bronzes with these types was struck in the

second half of the fourth century, to judge from control marks shared with contemporary silver

and from their presence in hoards buried around 300 BC. Of well over a thousand examples

of these chalkoi of which I have records, only a few dozen seem certainly to date to the late

fi fth or early fourth centuries, although some worn specimens of uncertain variety may be

from the early group. The 10 issues of early chalkoi which can be distinguished differ from

most of the later Rhodos / rose chalkoi in their generally chunky fabric and high proportion

of irregular die-axes (all silver and almost all other bronze issues of Rhodes were struck with

1 A fi rst version of this paper was given at a symposium on early bronze coinage held at Bordeaux in May 2001. I

am grateful to Philip Kinns for discussion and comment.

2 See, most recently, Gabrielsen 2000, esp. pp. 192-5 (whether or not one accepts Gabrielsen’s thesis that the

unifi cation of the three old cities had started well before the physical synoecism of 408/7).

3 For example, Samos (Barron 1966, pp. 99-101); Ephesos (CH 9, pp. 98-101 (Kinns) and 136-9, esp. 98 n. 5,

though with the discovery of the ‘Phygela hoard’ mentioned in n. 5 below the Ephesian bronzes concerned are no

longer ‘rare’.)

4 Early ties with Sicily and the West: van Gelder 1900, pp. 67-70, 77, 80, with ancient references. Early Akragantine

and other Sicilian bronze: see, for example, Westermark 1979, and other papers in the same volume.


2

R.H.J. ASHTON

upright axes, with very few individual exceptions). They also have certain stylistic features

which recall the earliest silver of the mint. For example, whereas the later Rhodos / rose

chalkoi have upright buds and the abbreviated ethnic Ρ−Ο around the rose-stalk or Ρο in the

left fi eld, some of the early chalkoi have squat plain roses without buds and the ethnic Ρ−Ο

on either side of the rose itself, or drooping buds on either side of the rose sometime with the

full ethnic ΡΟΔΙΟΝ above the rose, all features which occur variously on some of the late

fi fth/early fourth century tetradrachms, ΣΥΝ coins, and hemidrachms of the mint. Where the

ends of the central sepals of the roses on the early chalkoi can be discerned, they are pointed,

as on the early silver, whereas those on later issues of bronze and silver are usually curved.

Moreover, the head of Rhodos on the early bronzes sometimes faces left and sometimes (as

on two issues of early hemidrachms) wears a sakkos, whereas on the later coinage of this type

the head invariably faces right and invariably has the hair rolled. One such chalkous with leftoriented

head occurred in the Phygela hoard of about 400 BC. 5 On the obverse of at least one

coin, whose earliness is assured by its left-oriented head, squat budless rose and ethnic Ρ−Ο

on either side of the rose, there is a border of dots ; this is unprecedented on early Rhodian

coinage, but is a feature of some of the earliest Ionian bronze coinages, 6 though on the latter

a linear border is more common. 7 The symbols shrimp, grasshopper, ivy-leaf and bucranium

which occur on four of the early Rhodian issues probably have the same reference as those

symbols on some early hemidrachms and tetradrachms. The silver coinage of tetradrachms,

hemidrachms and obols which these bronzes accompanied was abundant, but, unless the

picture is severely distorted by the chances of survival, the volume of bronze production

seems to have been comparatively unimportant. 8

As for the irregular die-axes of the early Rhodian chalkoi, one should note here that, as

we shall see, irregular axes or axes at 6 o’clock are characteristic of Carian bronzes which

can be dated early on other grounds; Barron suggested that this might well be true of some

early bronzes of Samos. 9 Such irregular die-axes are thus a useful indication of an early date

in cases where other fi rm evidence is lacking. Later on from about the middle of the fourth

century, axes tend to become regular at 12 o’clock.

Next, we may turn to Idyma. Here we have in the late fi fth or very early fourth century

an issue of silver drachms, struck from three obverse dies, the two earlier with a facing head

of Pan having his usual feral appearance, the third with a facing Pan resembling the Helios-

Apollo of early Rhodian and Halikarnassian silver; the feral Pan occurs on accompanying

silver fractions. On the reverse of the drachms and fractions is a fi g-leaf, presumably copied

from the earlier silver and bronze coinage of Kamiros. 10 The apparently earliest bronze issue

of Idyma is represented by a single coin, shown to me in 2006 by a Turkish villager who had

found it in a fi eld at the site of ancient Euromos. It was 8-9mm in diameter, of chunky fabric,

5 For this remarkable hoard of small early bronze coins of western Asia Minor, see SNG Kayhan index 6; P.

Kinns, NC 2004, pp. 71-2. Several large groups of similar coins offered on the market over the past few years must

belong to the same fi nd, which will have comprised around a thousand or more coins. There appears to have been

some contamination by a few later fourth century coins, but the core of the hoard comprised the earliest and very

small bronze coins of Ephesos (bee / stag-head), Samos (prow / amphora), Phygela (female head facing / bull),

and Miletos (lion forepart r., head reverted / ornamented star in square incuse), with in addition some specimens

of Kyzikos, Tenedos (see n. 54 below), Pitane, Kolophon, Magnesia (male head / human thorax), Myous, Chios,

Halikarnassos (see below), Iasos (see below), Mylasa (lion-head r. / bird r. or l., ΜΙΛΑ: see below), and (as we have

seen) Rhodes.

6 E.g. Phygela (SNG Kayhan 543-583); Teos (SNG Kayhan 608); Chios (SNG Kayhan 625).

7 E.g. Ephesos (SNG Kayhan 147-188).

8 For examples of the early Rhodian chalkoi, see Pl. 1, 2-4 (respectively, 10mm, 1.16g, 06h.; 10mm, 1.02g, 12h.;

11mm, 1.39g, 12h: all my coll., acq. 1993, 1977 and 1975). See also Ashton 2001, esp. p. 90. A chalkous from the

later fourth century series is illustrated on Pl. 1, 5 (11mm, 1.40g, 12h: my coll., acq. 1972).

9 Barron 1966, p. 115.

10 See Ashton 2002a.


THE BEGINNING OF BRONZE COINAGE IN KARIA AND LYKIA 3

and had on the obverse a feral facing head of Pan and on the reverse a fi g-leaf, just as on the

fi rst two obverse dies of the silver drachms and on the fractions. I have a photograph of only

the obverse (Pl. 1, 6), and neither weight nor die-axis. 11 A further issue of Idymian chalkoi

seems to be slightly later, having on the obverse a head of Pan profi le right in his feral aspect,

and on the reverse a fi g leaf (Pl. 1, 7: 9mm, 0.93g, 06h; BM 1930-3-1-7 (N. Zitelli)). It seems

likely that these two very rare issues belong with the silver drachms and fractions and date

to around 400 BC.

A remarkable pair of hitherto unknown silver and bronze coins of Idyma has recently

come to light. The silver fraction has on the obverse a head of Silenos right, and on the

reverse a goat recumbent right with the ethnic ΙΔΥ below (6mm, 0.26g, 12h). The bronze has

on obverse a head of Silenos so similar that the same engraver must have produced both dies,

but no discernible type or lettering on the reverse (8mm, 0.47g). The pieces seem a little later

than the Pan / fi g-leaf silver and early bronze coins, and might tentatively be dated to the fi rst

half of the fourth century (Pl. 1, 8-9: both in a private collection).

Rhodes may well also have infl uenced the obverse type of the earliest chalkoi of Kaunos.

They have a head of Apollo three quarter facing left or right on the obverse, sometimes with

the tie of a chlamys beneath the chin, and a sphinx seated left on the reverse with the ethnic in

Karian script (Pl. 1, 10: 10mm, 1.06g, 12h; my coll., acq. 2001). 12 These coins acccompany

the last silver staters of the mint, and can be dated to the late fi fth or early fourth century by

those silver coins and by the similarity of their Apollo to the heads of Helios on the earliest

hemidrachms of Rhodes. They are more common than most of the other early bronze issues

of Karia, but still only a few dozen are known, the bulk in the Archaeological Museum of

Fethiye. They are mostly 10-11mm in diameter and 1-2g in weight, but a few are smaller

(8-9mm and c.0.7g); however, the types of the latter are the same and the dies seem to be of

the same size – they are thus evidence merely of inconsistent fl an preparation rather than of

a smaller denomination.

On the basis of the foregoing one might speculate that Kamiros on Rhodes and then the

federal mint of Rhodes were the fi rst to strike bronze coinage in south-west Asia Minor,

perhaps picking up the idea from the Greeks of the west; thence the idea, accompanied by

Rhodian types, spread to cities on the mainland opposite. But that is not of course the whole

story.

A little to the west of Idyma is Keramos. A few years ago I attributed a series of fourth

century chalkoi to this mint having on the obverse a bull walking to the right (sometimes with

a labrys above) and on the reverse a dolphin swimming right and the ethnic KE. I suggested

that the dotted border on the reverse of one of them indicated a date around 400 BC or not

much later, on the analogy of Ionian bronzes. 13 Not long after I wrote, some intriguing

11 The villager also showed me 11 other ancient coins which he had found on separate occasions in the same

fi eld: 1AR fraction, mint uncertain (head of ram r. / head of lion r. in square incuse; c.6 mm); 1 Miletos AR obol

(forepart of lion l., head reverted / star-like fl oral design in square incuse); 2 Miletos AE (head of Apollo r. / lion

standing r., head reverted, both c.13mm); 1 Priene AE (head of Athena r. / owl r. on amphora, ΠΡΙ−Η, ΑΧΙΛΛ[ΕΙ /

ΔΗΣ], c.20mm); 2 Klazomenai AE (head of Athena r. / ram recumbent l., c.14mm; head of Athena r. / head of ram

r., c.13 mm); 1 Pergamon AE (head of Athena r. / trophy); 1 Cassander AE (helmet / spear-head, ΚΑΣΣΑΝΔΡΟΥ

− ΒΑΣΙΛΕΩΣ, c. 14-15mm); 1 nummus of Galerius (GENIO POPULI ROMANI; probably Serdica AD 307-8, RIC

6, p. 500 no. 39); and 1 follis of Phocas. Euromos lies on the direct route from Priene and Miletos to Mylasa and

inland Karia, but one might speculate, though on slender grounds, that the presence in this small sample of three rare

or relatively rare coins from places as far away as Klazomenai and Idyma betokens visits by pilgrims to the temple

of Zeus Lepsynos. If so, the coin from Idyma suggests that a predecessor of the present temple may have been in

operation by the early fourth century.

12 Konuk 1998a, esp. pp. 214, 219-20.

13 Ashton 1998b. Here, Pls 1-2, 12-13 (respectively, 10 mm, 0.95 g, 03 h; 11mm, 1.22g, 12 h: my coll., acq. 1997

and 2000)..


4

R.H.J. ASHTON

chalkoi with the same types but a clear legend in Karian script appeared on the market. These

share the dotted border, irregular die-axis, and marked round incuse of Pl. 1, 12, and Konuk

has published them as the earliest bronzes of Keramos, whose Karian name would begin

Kbo… on the basis of their Karian legend. 14 They surely date to the late fi fth or very early

fourth century, and, taken together with the KE bronzes, offer interesting evidence for the

Hellenization of this area in the early fourth century, as do the earliest bronzes of Kaunos with

Karian legend. An apparently unique variant of these issues recently appeared on the market

with a bull’s forepart right on the obverse and a dolphin right on the reverse with the Karian

legend Kbo below (all within a border of dots). In diameter and weight it is comparable with

the issues with the entire bull on the obverse (Pl. 2, 14: 9mm, 0.84g, 12h; private coll.).

Halikarnassos, west of Keramos, provides four early bronze issues, the fi rst three very

rare. The fi rst has a head of Apollo left on the obverse and lyre with ΑΛΙ on the reverse; the

few recorded specimens weigh around 0.6-0.8g, are about 8-10mm in diameter, and have

irregular die-axes. At least two occurred in the Phygela hoard of about 400 BC (see n. 5

above). 15 These, an early bronze of Rhodes (see above), two early bronzes of Iasos, a few

early bronzes of Mylasa, and another unattributed coin (see below) are the only Karian or

potentially Karian coins which the hoard is known to have contained, and, together with

other Iasean bronzes (see below) seem to be the only certain examples from Karia of the

phenomenon that occurred more commonly further north, where the earliest bronzes were

often very small coins, which were replaced by larger pieces of about 11mm and 1-2g,

presumably because the fi rst issues were inconveniently small. The second early bronze issue

of Halikarnassos has a diameter of about 10mm and types of a forepart of a winged horse

left on the obverse and a lyre fl anked by laurel-branches on the reverse; the linear or dotted

border on the obverse and the linear square partly formed by the laurel-branches on the

reverse suggest a date around 400, 16 while the weights, only about 0.7g, and irregular dieaxes

also suggest an early date (Pl. 2, 16: 10mm, 0.66g, 06h; BMC 7). The chunky fabric,

irregular die-axes and reverse types of the third issue, with head of Athena / lyre between two

laurel branches, likewise suggest an early date (Pl. 2, 17: 8mm, 1.00g, 09h; BMC 13). The

fourth bronze issue reverts to the types of the fi rst, but is larger and heavier; 17 Konuk 1998b,

p. 98 n. 207, dates it c.390-380, though a slightly later date cannot be excluded.

I have already mentioned the earliest bronze issues of Iasos, north-east of Halikarnassos.

The fi rst issue, known in only three examples, has on the obverse a young male head three

quarter facing l., surrounded in one case by a possible border of reeds 18 and in the others by a

linear border; on the reverse is a female head r. in a sakkos, with a prawn in front of her chin,

and the letters ΙΑΣΕ behind her neck (Pl. 2, 19-20: respectively, 9mm, 0.77g, 06h; 10mm,

0.81g, 12h.: both my coll., ex Ebay Deutschland 8339330297 (6/10/2005) and 8313635966

(28/6/2005)). The types remind one of the earliest hemidrachms of Rhodes with head of

Helios three quarter facing r. on obverse and a head of the nymph Rhodos profi le right on

the reverse, which date to the end of the fi fth century. 19 The male head on the obverse of the

14 Konuk 2000a. Here, Pl. 1, 11 (8mm, 0.90g, 09h: SNG Kayhan 804; CNG 54 (2000), 702; Giessener MH 97

(1999), 388). With the Carian legend in mind, I have reexamined Pl. 1, 12, and believe that its very unclear legend

could well be the Carian Kbo, rather than the Greek ΚΕ.

15 Pl. 2, 15 (10mm, 0.75g, 06h: SNG Kayhan 761, from the Phygela hoard).

16 See above.

17 Pl. 2, 18 (10mm, 1.66g, 02h; private coll.). Very few of these coins have been formally attributed to

Halikarnassos.

18 The border of reeds at the top of the head on Pl. 2, 19 is not fully clear. The motif does not seem to be part of

a headdress, and reminds one of the border of reeds which occurs on the reverses of several bronze issues of Iasos

from the third/second centuries, e.g. BMC 10; SNG Tübingen 3399; Waddington 2436; SNG Copenhagen 417;

Lindgren III, 434. But a laurel-wreath cannot be excluded.

19 Ashton 2001, pp. 81 and 99, nos. 11-12.


THE BEGINNING OF BRONZE COINAGE IN KARIA AND LYKIA 5

Iasean bronzes has the same three quarter facing left posture as that on the reverse of some

silver fractions of the late fi fth/early fourth century with a lion-head l. on the obverse, which

almost certainly belong to Karia. 20 As we shall see, a lion forepart occurs on some slightly

later bronzes of Iasos, but the styles of the male head on the bronzes and silver are very

different, and it would be rash to suggest assigning the latter to Iasos.

The second issue has as types a young male head right on the obverse, and on the reverse a

prawn and the legend ΙΑ below. Two of the three specimens known to me probably occurred

in the Phygela hoard of about 400 BC.; all three are 8 mm in diameter and the one weight

known to me is 0.68g (Pl. 2, 22: 8mm, 0.68g, 09h; my coll., ex Ebay Deutschland 8339609272

(7/10/2005). A variant of this issue, known from a unique specimen reportedly from the

Phygela hoard, has a scallop below the prawn on the reverse and the legend ΙΑ above (Pl. 2,

23: 9mm, 0.64g, 3h; private collection), exactly as on later specimens from the mid-fourth

century (see n. 41 below).

A little later seems to be a remarkable issue, known from two specimens which appeared

recently on the market, with on the obverse a laureate head of Apollo left, and on the reverse

the right-facing forepart of a lion above a prawn, with the letters ΙΑ−ΣΕ above in the fi rst case

and some possible letters below in the second (Pl. 2, 24-25: 11mm, 1.24g, 06h; 10mm, 1.14g,

12h; my coll., respectively acq. 2003 and 2006). Their small size and the die-axis of one at 6

o’clock suggest a relatively early date, and the head on the obverse looks earlier in style than

those on bronzes of Iasos from the middle of the fourth century mentioned above.

Inland from Iasos, Mylasa seems to have struck an early small issue of bronze, represented

by at least three specimens from the Phygela hoard, with types lion head r. on obverse, and

a bird standing r. or l. with the legend ΜΙΛΑ above on the reverse (Pl. 2, 26: 9mm, 0.75g,

06h; private collection, reportedly from the Phygela hoard). Despite the aberrant form of

the ethnic (perhaps the transliteration of the name from Karian to Greek in this early period

had not yet been standardised), there seems little doubt that the attribution is sound, and it

seems likely that this bronze issue succeeded a fairly common series of anepigraphic silver

fractions with similar types, which can therefore now be attributed to Mylasa with reasonable

confi dence: see SNG Kayhan 940-948, where Konuk (foreshadowed in part by Six 1890, pp.

231-2) has already suggested a probable attribution of the silver fractions to Mylasa, without

spelling out his reasons.

Apart from these early coinages of Kamiros, Rhodes, Idyma, Kaunos, Keramos,

Halikarnassos, Iasos and Mylasa, I know of seven further issues from, or arguably from,

Karia which may belong to the fi rst quarter of the fourth century or earlier. The fi rst, and

perhaps the earliest, is represented by a single known example, which came on the market in

2003. On the obverse it has a facing lion’s mask with two vertical legs prominently depicted

on either side; the reverse has a tunny or related fi sh oriented left above a murex shell (Pl. 3,

27: 9mm, 0.62g, 06h; my coll., acq. 2003). The coin’s small diameter, low weight and dieaxis

at 6h all suggest a very early date. The lion’s mask is similar to that found on the obverse

of some Karian silver fractions of the late fi fth or early fourth century with a scorpion on

the reverse (Pl. 3, 28: 8mm, 0.46g, 03h; my coll., acq. 1995). Konuk at SNG Kayhan 934-8

suggests that these silver fractions (and earlier electrum of the same types at SNG Kayhan

925-8) are from Mylasa, and this is now supported by a new silver fraction with on the

obverse a lion head l. and on the reverse a scorpion with the letter Μ at bottom r. (Pl. 3, 29:

8mm; 0.49g; 03h; private collection). 21 Nevertheless, the maritime reverse type of the bronze

20 SNG Keckman 847-859; Troxell 1984, 250, nos 2A-C. Here Pl. 2, 21: 0.25g, 03h, 6mm; Troxell 2C(i) =.SNG

Keckman 849

21 Strabo VI, 26, reports that Mylasa, Alabanda and the mountainous country between them are full of scorpions.


6

R.H.J. ASHTON

with lion’s mask / fi sh above murex shell suggests that a coastal site may be more appropriate

for the bronze issue.

The single known specimen of the second coinage, said to have been found at Euromos,

has an animal’s head facing on the obverse, which looks something like an owl, but is

probably meant to be a short-maned lion, lioness or panther; above it is a line which could

be the remains of a linear square. The reverse carries a crude lion-head facing with longer

mane, in a round incuse (Pl. 3, 30: 11mm, 1.14g, 12h; private collection). The lion-heads

suggest Mylasa, close to Euromos, as a possible place of minting, but this is little more than

speculation. Nor is a date as early as the early fourth century at all certain.

The single known specimen of the third coinage has a crude double axe on the obverse and

a boar’s head r. on the reverse (Pl. 3, 31: 9mm, 0.91g, 03h; my coll., ex Ebay Deutschland

8312656686 (24/6/2005)). It is anepigraphic, but the forepart of a wild boar is the reverse

type of the late fi fth/early fourth century silver fractions of Euromos, 22 the double axe is an

attribute of the city’s principal deity, Zeus Lepsynos, and both a double axe on its own and

the cult statue of Zeus Lepsynos holding a double axe in his right hand and a spear in his left

appear on Hellenistic and later coins of the city. 23 It is diffi cult to think of a more suitable

attribution.

The fourth coinage is also known from a single specimen, which is said to have been found

at Keramos. On the obverse is a bearded head right in a dotted circle, and on the reverse an

8-pointed star with dots between the rays (Pl. 3, 32: 12-13mm, 1.76g; private collection). I

have no suggestion for its mint, and it could belong much later than the early fourth century.

The fi fth coinage is represented by the rare chalkoi of Karyanda with on the obverse a

female head right, and on the reverse a bull’s forepart right with the ethnic ΚΑΡ above.

A date early in the fourth century is suggested by the similarity of the head of Hera on

some bronzes of Samos dated by Barron 1966, p. 115, to the early fourth century, by the

chunkiness of their fabric, and the depth of round incuse on some specimens. The infl uence

of Samos would not be surprising given the location of Karyanda on the north coast of the

Halikarnassos peninsula facing towards Samos. Compare Pl. 3, 33 (11 mm, 0.94g, 06h; my

collection, acq. 2000) with 34 (Samos, BMC 149. 14mm, 2.98g, 06h).

The sixth coinage is represented by some rare chalkoi which have on the obverse a facing

radiate head of Helios with the tie of a chlamys beneath the chin, and on the reverse a bunch

of grapes with a crayfi sh and the letters ΚΡΑΝ (Pl. 3, 35: 11mm, 1.32g, 06h; my coll., acq.

2000). Walker 1978 dated them to the early third century, 24 and attributed them to Kranaos,

an obscure place, mentioned in ancient literature only by Pliny, NH 5.29.108, as one of two

towns on the site of the later Antioch on the Maeander. But their chunky fabric, irregular dieaxes

and obverse type, reminiscent of the early bronzes of Kaunos, suggest a date in the fi rst

half of the fourth century, and it is diffi cult to explain why such a remote inland place far to

the east of any other state which struck bronze in Karia in the fourth century should suddenly

produce a handsome if short-lived issue of bronzes, which appear to have been infl uenced

by Rhodes. A mint on the coast near Rhodes or under Rhodian infl uence would seem more

suitable. These doubts are now enhanced by several recent reports of fi nd-spots. A group of

13 such coins, catalogued by Koray Konuk in Bodrum Museum, had been confi scated from

a person from the village of Turgut near Marmaris and not far from ancient Kastabos, that is

to say in or just outside the northern part of the Rhodian incorporated peraea south-east of

the Ceramic Gulf. Five others came from the north-eastern coast of the Ceramic Gulf: two

from Ören (Keramos), two from Hayıtlı seven km west of Idyma, and one from Yazalanı on

22 Ashton 2003a.

23 E.g. BMC 1-6, 8.

24 Followed by Beden and Mannucci 2004, p. 209.


THE BEGINNING OF BRONZE COINAGE IN KARIA AND LYKIA 7

the coast between Keramos and Hayıtlı. 25 Finally, a ΚΡΑΝ coin which I purchased in 1998

was accompanied by a ticket which recorded that it had been acquired in 1966 in Muğla, the

modern provincial capital (ancient Mobolla), which lies inland north of Idyma. 26 Cumulatively

these reports are strong evidence that the ΚΡΑΝ mint was located on the coast of the inner

(eastern) end of the Ceramic Gulf, perhaps more probably on the northern than the southern

side. No ancient toponym or ethnic beginning ΚΡΑΝ is known in the area, but Beden and

Mannucci 2004, pp. 207-8, point out the cluster of modern Turkish names with the root Kıran

or similar on or near the north-east coast of the Ceramic Gulf : Kıranköy, Kırandağ, Kıran

Sahili, Kıran Asarlık, Kuren Gediği and Kuren Deresi (respectively, Kıran/Kuren village,

mountain, shore, fortress, pass and stream). Candidates for the location of ΚΡΑΝ would

include the important site at Hayıtlı or the fortifi ed site of Kıran Asarlık. 27 As with the early

bronzes of Kaunos, one or two of the known ΚΡΑΝ bronzes are, at about 0.7g and 8mm,

smaller than the rest of the coins which are 1-2g and 10-11mm; but again the dies are of the

same size, and the smaller coins seem merely to betoken inconsistent preparation of fl ans.

Finally, another early bronze issue has been attributed to Pitane in southern Mysia, but

may belong further south. All the coins known to me weigh around 0.7g and are 8-9mm in

diameter. They have a female head right on the obverse and the initials ΠΙ in a dotted border

on the reverse. 28 The dotted border perhaps suggests a date around 400 or a little later (see

above). The coins bear no relation to the late fi fth century bronzes of Pitane (roughly 0.5g or

less in weight and 8mm in diameter; at least two in the Phygela hoard, e.g. SNG Kayhan 70),

nor to the slightly larger later bronze coins of the city. All of these indisputably Pitanean coins

have Zeus Ammon and a pentangle as types, and for the female head / ΠΙ coins it might be

worth looking for alternative mints such as Pidasa near Miletos, Pisye north of Idyma, Pisilis

on the coast east of Kaunos, or even Pinara in Lykia. Konuk has recently been attracted by the

attribution to Pidasa, for the use of the mint’s initials as a reverse type is paralleled on some

roughly contemporary silver fractions from nearby Latmos. 29 However, I have been told that

one specimen was recently found in Aiolis, although my informant admitted that he could

not be sure on this point, and the small module of these coins is typical for bronzes of the

Troad, Mysia and Aiolis in the fourth century. On balance, therefore, I am inclined to follow

convention in attributing this issue to Pitane, although the difference between its types and

25 Ibid.

26 Peus 355 (1998), lot 136 (part). The coin was owned by the late Danish collector Peter Hammerich, whose

collection was auctioned in Peus 355. On the basis of information supplied by myself, Alan Walker noted that two of

the ΚΡΑΝ coins in Rhodes Archaeological Museum were acquired from a person from Syme, who in turn acquired

them from the mainland of Asia Minor: it would be reasonable to assume that they came from the coast opposite,

though this cannot be taken for granted. Doubts about the attribution of these coins to Kranaos as against a site closer

to the coast have already been expressed by Descat 1998, p. 114, n. 34.

27 Beden and Mannucci 2004, pp. 207-8, 212; Brun 2001, pp. 64-8. Beden and Mannucci 2004, p. 211, also suggest

that ΚΡΑΝ might stand for an otherwise unattested east Karian koinon, perhaps called the Kranaoi. I discount

their assumption (p. 210) that the Cranaos of Pliny, NH 5.29.108 may be identical with a site along this coast, the

population having been moved a considerable distance to help form the new city of Antioch on the Maeander:

whatever the other well-known problems surrounding this passage of Pliny, his wording implies clearly that Kranaos

was at or very near the site of the future Antioch : ‘…Antiochia, ubi fuere Symmaethos et Cranaos…’. For the sake

of completeness two further possibilities might be mentioned, though neither is remotely plausible. Kranais was the

name of one of the tribes of the city of Kaunos further down the south coast (attested epigraphically on the circular

building near the theatre at Kaunos: see Ehrhardt 1997), but it is diffi cult to see any direct connection. It is just as

diffi cult to imagine, though it cannot be entirely excluded, that ΚΡΑΝ stands for the name of a local magistrate or

dynast.

28 Pl. 3, 36 (8mm, 0.68g, 03h; my coll., acq. 1996). Ashton 1998b, pp. 47-8, n. 40.

29 Konuk 2005, pp. 57-8 n. 217. Note also the use of the initials ΠΡΙΗ in a maeander circle as the reverse type of

fourth century coins of Priene on the other side of the Maeander valley: Regling 1927, pp. 47-8, nos 48-50.


8

R.H.J. ASHTON

those of the Zeus / pentangle issues which would precede and succeed it is troubling. A single

fi rm fi nd-spot would go a long way towards solving the problem. 30

I should note here another issue of fourth century bronzes of similarly small module with

on the obverse a female head right and on the reverse a spearhead fl anked by the letters Χ −

Α (Pl. 3, 37: 8mm, 0.64g, 03h; my coll., acq. 2002). These have in the past been attributed

to Chalketor in inland Karia or Chalke, an island off Rhodes, but the evidence of fi nd-spots

makes it clear that the mint was in the Troad or Mysia, most probably the island of Chalkis in

the Hekatonesoi in the gulf of Adramytion. 31

Similar is the case of some rare fourth century bronzes with types radiate head of Helios

right and rose fl anked by the letters M-E (Pl. 3, 38: 10mm, 0.78g, 03h; my coll., acq. 1998).

They, and the corresponding drachms, are often attributed to the island of Megiste off Lykia,

and at all events their Rhodian-like types suggest south-west Asia Minor. In fact, however,

recent fi nd-spot evidence makes it quite clear that they come from the Troad; I now believe

that they were struck around 360 by one or other of the Rhodian brothers Mentor and Memnon

who were mercenary generals for the Persian Great King, had estates in the Troad, and at

one point controlled Lampakos, whose mint produced gold coins with very similar obverse

type. 32

This exhausts the list of bronzes from or allegedly from Karia which could with varying

degrees of plausibility be assigned to the late fi fth century or fi rst quarter of the fourth. They

are all very rare in comparison with bronze coinages from later in the fourth century, and give

the impression of rather tentative, experimental coinages which were short-lived and had

little economic signifi cance. It should however be noted that several of the issues concerned

have come to light only in recent years and only in single specimens; future discoveries

may well modify this picture. From the second quarter of the fourth century, the practice

of minting bronze spreads to other states. Knidos begins with an issue of chalkoi from

about 375 and of dichalka a couple of decades later; 33 Kos, 34 Myndos, 35 Nisyros, 36 Telos, 37

30 There are no specimens at the museum of Fethiye, ancient Telmissos on the coast between Karia and Lykia, but,

given the rarity of the issue, this proves nothing.

31 Stauber 1996, Vol. 2 (with M. Barth), pp. 280-2, with preceding bibliography.

32 Ashton 2002b.

33 Pl. 4, 39 (chalkous: 9mm, 1.11g, 02h: BM 1928-7-14-44 (N. Zitelli)); Nordbø 1972, pp. 154-6; Nordbø 1989,

p. 53; Ashton 1999b, pp. 89-92.

34 Ingvaldsen 2002, pp. 164 and 167, dates his fi rst bronze issues IX and X (e.g., respectively, BMC 99-100 and

25-6) vaguely to ‘330-250’, but on no very solid grounds; they look more like purely fourth century coinages to me,

though there can be no certainty. See Pl. 4, 40 (9-10mm, 1.01g, 12h; BMC 25).

35 Pl. 4, 41 (11mm, 1.26g, 12h; my coll., acq. 1972). Louis Robert’s instinct to attribute to Myndos these common

bronzes with Poseidon / dolphin + trident + ΜΥ (in Akarca 1959, pp. 60-2) has been confi rmed by fi nds in the area

(information from Koray Konuk); see also Ashton 1999a, p. 15, C. Akarca’s date for this issue (c.210-30 BC) is

clearly too late.

36 Pl. 4, 42 (10-12mm, 1.04g, 12h; my coll., acq. 1997); Ashton 1999a. The apparent dichalka of issue 1 (ibid. p.

17: radiate head of Helios three-quarter facing r. / female head r., with rose behind, offi cial’s name below, and Ν in

front) are not certainly attributable to Nisyros. Their heads of Helios, with the tie of a chlamys below the neck on

some dies, are not dissimilar from those on the ΚΡΑΝ bronzes and the early Helios / sphinx bronzes of Kaunos (see

above), both of which can be assigned to the earlier part of the fourth century. However, the heads of Rhodos on the

probable Nisyrian coins look later. If these apparent dichalka belong to the early part of the fourth century, they will

be the only Karian bronzes of larger than chalkous denomination known for that period.

37 Pl. 4, 43 (10mm, 1.53g; Aufhäuser 13 (1997), 192); Robert 1934, esp. p. 46; Ashton 1999a, p. 23; Ashton 1999b,

pp. 79, n. 13, and 91, n. 31.


THE BEGINNING OF BRONZE COINAGE IN KARIA AND LYKIA 9

Astypalaia 38 and Syangela 39 seem to strike bronzes around the middle of the fourth century, in

some cases perhaps a little earlier or later - hoard evidence for more precise dating is lacking.

The same may apply to the early bronzes of Kalymna, 40 which are usually assigned to the

third century BC, but look earlier to me. Rhodes (as we have seen above), Iasos, 41 Kaunos, 42

and probably Halikarnassos 43 resume the practice of minting bronze around the middle of the

fourth century, and Idyma perhaps towards the end. 44

But it seems clear that even by the end of the fourth century the practice of minting bronze

in Karia was far from widespread. If we discount the issues improbably attributed to Kranaos

on the Maeander and Pisye, no inland state seems to have struck bronze before the end of

the fourth century, apart from Mylasa with its small late fi fth century issue. 45 The coinage

of Eupolemos of the late fourth century, which is usually attributed to Mylasa, is hardly an

exception to this general observation, for it is non-civic in nature and in any case it may well

have been struck at coastal Kaunos. 46 Indeed, no inland Karian state in the fourth century is

known to have struck any precious metal coin either, apart from Mylasa, Euromos, Syangela

38 Pl. 4, 44 (dichalkon? 13mm, 2.21g, 12h; BMC Caria etc., ‘Astyra’ 11). These and related bronze coins with

legend ΑΣΤΥ have in the past been attributed to an alleged Astyra in Karia (BMC Caria, pp. 60-1, ‘Astyra’ 8-19),

but this city never existed. Given the Rhodian provenance of most of the British Museum specimens and the clearly

Rhodian style of the Helios head on some of their obverses, the attribution to Astypalaia proposed at SNG von

Aulock 8170 is preferable to an attribution to Mysian Astyra proposed on balance by Stauber 1996, Vol. 2, pp. 258-

60 (with M. Barth). See Ashton 2001, p. 84, n. 32; since then I have seen in a private collection a further bronze

with ΑΣΤΥ (female head r. / amphora) which was acquired on Rhodes. Astypalaia on Kos can be ruled out since

(i) Koan coinage had been issued in the name of the whole island since the fi fth century, and (ii) the Rhodian coins

whose obverses inspired the Helios on the ΑΣΤΥ coins date to the late 340s or later (Ashton 2001, nos. 95-102), a

quarter-century or more after the Koan synoecism in 366.

39 Pl. 4, 45 (11mm, 1.26g, 06h; Hauck & Aufhäuser 15 (2000), 212); Yarkin 1975; Yarkin 1977. The bronzes are

dated by Yarkin to the early third century, but look earlier to me.

40 Pl. 4, 46 (11mm, 1.72g, 06h; my coll., acq. 1996).

41 Pl. 4, 47 (11mm, 1.41g, 12h; private coll.). Delrieux 2001, following an idea of O. Picard, suggests that these

chalkoi with types Apollo / prawn + scallop were used as payment for attendance at the city’s ekklesia attested by an

inscription dating perhaps to c.330-325. However, as noted in Ashton 2003b, p. 138, the value of these coins seems

inconveniently small for the purpose: the city apparently envisaged expenditure of 180 drachms a month, and, if

Gauthier’s calculations (1990, p. 438) are correct, each citizen who qualifi ed for the payment received about three

obols. Konuk (paper given at a conference on Hellenistic Karia in Oxford June-July 2006) has reached the same

conclusion. I return to the question in a forthcoming paper on the coinage of Iasos.

42 Pl. 4, 48-49: respectively, 11mm, 1.41g, 12h, BMC 1; 12-13mm, 1.53g., 12h, BM 1926-2-5-2 (Spink).These

very common coins retain the seated sphinx of the earliest bronzes on the reverse but have a bull or a bull’s forepart

on the obverse and the ethnic in Greek on the reverse; they seem to belong to the second half of the fourth century,

like most of the even more common Rhodos / rose chalkoi of Rhodes, though in the case of the Kaunian bronzes

conclusive hoard evidence is lacking.

43 Pl. 4, 50 (11mm, 1.41g, 06h; my coll., acq. 2001). These chalkoi, with head of Apollo left on the obverse and

standing eagle with lyre symbol on the reverse, are often assigned to the third or second century, but may belong to

the mid-fourth century, since at least one and perhaps as many as four were found in fi ll above the sacrifi cial layer at

the Mausoleum: see Jeppesen et al. 1981, p. 51, but note also Hornblower 1982b, p. 109, for the potential circularity

of this argument (coins and pottery dated before 353 to suit context of Mausolos’ burial, but the sacrifi ce dated to

time of Mausolos because of the pottery and coins). Note that Kinns 2003, p. 6, has demonstrated that a mid-fourth

century bronze coin with lion / star given to Halikarnassos by Imhoof-Blumer 1908, p. 88 no. 1 (= Winterthur 3352)

should be assigned to Miletos.

44 Two issues of Idymian chalkoi with respectively female head r. / fi g leaf and Apolline head of Pan r. / fi g leaf

occur in good condition in IGCH 1289-1290, a single hoard, though contaminated with later material, whose core

was concealed in the early third century (Ashton 2002a, p. 125, and n. 44). See Pl. 5, 51-52: 9mm, 0.79g, 9h, BM

1969-5-15-11; 11mm, 1.29g, 12h, BM 1969-5-15-10 (both ex IGCH 1289-1290).

45 Mylasa also struck some very rare bronzes of very small module with types eagle on shield / crest of helmet, but

I should be inclined to follow Akarca 1959 (p. 62, no. 21) in dating them to the third century or later. They bear no

resemblance to the early bronzes with ΜΙΛΑ discussed above.

46 Ashton 2004, pp. 43-4. In the same article I also propose transferring to Kaunos most of the late lifetime/early

posthumous gold, silver and bronze coinage in the names of Alexander the Great and Philip Arrhidaios usually given

to Miletos or Mylasa.


10

R.H.J. ASHTON

and Latmos, the last three with very modest output. 47 Some of the so far unattributed small

silver fractions of the late fi fth and early fourth century from Karia which have emerged in

quantity over the past two or three decades (for example, SNG Keckman I, 837-928; SNG

Kayhan 934-999) may turn out to be civic issues of inland cities as opposed to civic issues

of coastal cities or satrapal issues; for example, we have seen above that the lion head / bird

fractions can now be confi dently assigned to Mylasa. Nevertheless, these issues are clearly

on a small scale, and it would be reasonable to suppose that the use of coinage outside the

coastal areas was limited until well into the Hellenistic period. It is worth noting that at the

museum in Fethiye in coastal Karia by far the largest group of bronze coins from the second

half of the fourth century is that struck in the name of Alexander the Great and his successors;

bronzes of nearby Rhodes and Kaunos come next, but there is virtually nothing else in

bronze for the period. 48 One might suggest that further inland it was only with the advent

of Alexander and his successors that the use of bronze coinage became at all widespread,

and this is corroborated by the holdings of the museum at Afyon in inland Phrygia where

virtually the only bronze coinage from the fourth century is an abundant group in the names

of Alexander and his successors. 49

The biggest surprise when one surveys bronze coinage in fourth century Karia is the

absence of the Hekatomnids from the list of issuing authorities. 50 Their fellow satraps further

north issued bronze coinage, and, as we shall see, their fellow dynast in Lykia, Perikles,

struck bronzes in the 370s and 360s; there were also precedents among the Greek cities

closer to home and often under their control. The apparently small civic bronze issues of

their capital, Halikarnassos, cannot have coped with any signifi cant need for small change.

Why then did the Hekatomnids not strike any of their own? Perhaps they simply did not

make small-scale payments of the sort where bronze coins would be useful. Or perhaps part

of the answer is that for small change the Hekatomnids used the silver fractions mentioned

in the last paragraph. But these explanations are not wholly satisfactory; for example, the

tiny silver coins would have been diffi cult to use, and, again, Mausolos had a reputation for

avarice 51 and would surely not have failed to see the potential for profi t in issuing a fi duciary

bronze coinage.

Finally, one should note in Karia a phenomenon repeated elsewhere along the west coast

of Asia Minor, namely the quite large number of relatively minor states which produce a brief

issue of bronze in the fourth century, and then never appear again in the numismatic record,

or do so only after a long interval: into this category in Karia come ‘Kranaos’, Karyanda,

Keramos, Myndos, Telos, Astypalaia, Kalymna, and perhaps the ΠΙ mint. Why did they

produce these isolated issues? Presumably they were struck to facilitate payments of some

47 Mylasa: the coinage of Hekatomnos, the lion / star coinage of Mausolos, and some earlier civic fractions.

Euromos: Ashton 2003a. Syangela: e.g. Yarkin 1975, p. 18, no. 1, and SNG Keckman I, 264. Latmos: Konuk 2005;

note that the abstract of his paper for the 1997 Berlin INC (which in the event he could not attend), referred to in

Konuk 2005, p. 56, n. 205, does not mention attributions to Latmos (XII Internationale Numismatischer Kongress.

Vortragszusammenfassungen (Berlin, 1997), pp. 87-8), and the fi rst attribution in print of these coins to Latmos

remains that of A. Wenninger in Hauck & Aufhäuser auction 14 (6/10/1998), 158-160.

48 Ashton 1998a, esp. pp. 43-4.

49 Ibid.

50 Weiser 1997 attributes to Hekatomnos a small bronze (1.02g, 9mm, 06h) with a satrapal head on the obverse

and the forepart of a galloping horse surmounted by the letters ΚΑ on the reverse where he detects traces of an initial

epsilon. But to judge from his photograph the initial letter could well be sigma (a possibility which Weiser discounts

without discussion), and the coin could have been struck at Skapsis (Skepsis) or Skamandreia in the Troad in northwest

Asia Minor where satrapal bronzes struck at Greek cities are quite common: see Konuk 2000b, p. 175. Even if

the coin did belong to Hekatomnos, it would be a remarkably isolated issue.

51 FGrHist 115 Theopompos F 299. Cf. also Ps.-Arist. Oikon. 1348a 12ff; Polyain. 7.23.1, though note the

reservations about the reliability of these sources in Hornblower 1982a, p. 70, n. 126, and 75.


THE BEGINNING OF BRONZE COINAGE IN KARIA AND LYKIA 11

sort, but one can also posit as subsidiary motives those explicitly cited by the Sestos decree

some two and a half centuries later, namely the prospect of making a one-off profi t from

issuing a fi duciary coinage, and the advertisement of the state’s identity, an expression of

civic pride. 52 Was all this connected with the hellenization of at least some of these states,

in particular the development of Karian communities into Greek-style poleis, a process

attested epigraphically and in literature for Keramos and Myndos? 53 Did the adoption of

Greek institutions provoke the need to make certain payments by the city, as well as a desire

to advertise its new status? One might suppose that all this would have been encouraged

by Mausolos in his drive to hellenize his satrapy. 54 Nevertheless the question remains as to

why our Karian states did not continue production of bronze coinage. Perhaps the economic

dominance of larger states like Rhodes, Knidos and Kaunos, which issued abundant bronze

coinages in the second half of the fourth century, obliged the smaller states to accept those

coinages at face value, and thus made the production of local bronze unnecessary and

certainly less profi table, an idea supported by the ubiquity of Rhodian bronze coinage around

the coast of Karia from the later fourth century onwards. Alternatively, one might suggest

that the smaller coinages were suppressed by the Hekatomnids (despite Maussolos’ policy

of hellenization) for reasons about which we can only speculate. Whatever the cause of their

cessation, by the last third of the fourth century the requirements of these smaller states for

bronze coinage seem to have been met by the massive output of the larger states, and, after

about 320 BC by the coinages in the name of Alexander the Great and Philip III struck at

Miletos or Mylasa, or (as I believe) Kaunos. 55

B. LYKIA

The coinage of the Lykian dynasts since the early fi fth century had been infl uenced by that

of the Greek states, as is clear from the derivative types on their silver. One would therefore

not be surprised to see the Lykian dynasts and cities striking bronze early on. In fact there is

little fourth century bronze in Lykia, and none that can be dated with any confi dence earlier

than its second quarter. Perikle of Limyra struck an abundant series of bronzes in two issues

in the 370s and 360s with types head of Pan l. / triskeles, and goat forepart / triskeles (Pl.

5, 54-55: respectively, 13mm, 2.38g, BMC Lycia etc., p. 36, 159; 9-11mm, 1.33g, BMC

Lycia etc., p. 37, 163). The Pans generally weigh a little over two grams, the goat forepart

coins a little over one gram: perhaps chalkoi and hemichalka, or dichalka and chalkoi. An

apparent Persian governor in Lykia struck some rare bronzes with the royal archer on the

obverse and a goat on the reverse with an Aramaic inscription. They are sometimes given

to Cappadocia, but fi ndspot evidence leaves no doubt that they were struck somewhere in

52 OGIS 100.

53 Keramos a polis as early as the time of Mausolos: Blümel 1990, p. 32. Myndos: Hornblower 1982a, pp. 96-7,

with reff.

54 Nollé 1998, pp. 505-7, argues that the desire to advertise hellenization amid a surrounding native population

lay behind the fi ne early fourth century bronzes of little Gergis in the Troad. The late fi fth / fourth century bronze

coinages of north-west Asia Minor as a whole would repay detailed study. They clearly began early, for the bronze

coins of Tissaphernes from Mysian Astyra must have preceded his death in 395 (Stauber 1996, Vol. 2, pp. 252-6

(with M. Barth)), and some bronzes of Teuthrania have also been attributed to the dynasts Prokles and Eurysthenes

who ruled there in around 400 BC (but see Debord 1999, pp. 191 and 481, for arguments in favour of a later date;

the question remains open). Moreover, a recently-discovered bronze almost certainly of Tenedos, with on obverse a

human head (sex uncertain) r., and on reverse a double axe with ΤΕ above, was said to have come from the Phygela

hoard (Pl. 5, 53: 0.48g, 8mm, 08h, private collection), and its very small module and irregular die-axis certainly

suggest an early date...

55 Ashton 2004 (see n. 46 above).


12

R.H.J. ASHTON

Lykia; they presumably date between about 400 BC and the coming of Alexander, perhaps

late within that span given their fl at fabric and use of Aramaic rather than Lykian. 56

Three further unique bronzes which recently turned up on the market can be attributed

to fourth century Lykia. The fi rst has on the obverse a head of Pan r., and on the reverse a

recumbent goat (possibly a deer) with letters which seem to read in Lykian A, R, sonant N,

a known abbreviation for Arñna, the Lykian name for Xanthos. If this is right, the coin is

the only known civic bronze of Lykia with legend in Lykian; the obverse type recalls that of

Perikle’s larger denomination and the coin may refl ect the expansion, attested epigraphically,

of Perikle’s domain from his capital at Limyra in eastern Lykia to the Xanthos valley and

further west. 57

The other two have on the obverse a thickset quadruped walking left (the head is not

visible on either), and on the reverse a triskeles, without legend. Their crude style and chunky

fabric suggest a date in the fi rst half of the fourth century, though these criteria are not

conclusive. I do not have weights for either, but the larger of the two is 12mm in diameter

and its weight is said to be roughly double that of the smaller. 58 I have suggested above

that differences in weight and diameter in bronzes of Kaunos and ‘Kranaos’ merely indicate

incompetent preparation of fl ans rather than two separate denominations; the contrast in the

size and weight of the two Lykian coins is much greater, but the fact that they are said to be

struck from the same pair of dies favours the view that they belong to a single denomination

– further examples should allow a clearer determination.

Kolb and Tietz have recently attributed tentatively to the dynast Wekhssere in c.440 BC

a unique bronze coin with boar protome l. / Pegasos protome l. and diskeles symbol (2.92g,

13mm). It is however virtually inconceivable that bronze coinage was struck so early in

Lykia; the coin presumably belongs to the fi rst half of the fourth century (given its dynastic

types) or is the core of a silver-plated coin – or both. 59

These then seem to be the only Lykian bronzes which can be dated with any plausibility

to the fi rst half of the fourth century. Thus bronze coinage does not seem to have been used

to any signifi cant extent in fourth century Lykia, except for the issues of Perikles. The region

is not yet known to have in the fourth century the abundance and variety of silver fractions

from Karia which the Hekatomnids may have used for small change, 60 and the evidence at

present suggests that, as with inland Karia, coined money did not play a major role in smallscale

transactions in Lykia in the fi rst half of the fourth century. The contrast with coastal

Karia is marked. In Karia we have some coastal cities striking bronze from early on, but a

dynasty which struck none. In Lykia, we have a dynast and an apparent Persian governor

striking bronze, but, apart from Xanthos, no civic bronze coinage in the fourth century. One

might suggest that this refl ects the less advanced level of civic development and hellenization

in Lykia, perhaps due in part to the inland location of most of its centres of power, and their

distance from Greek cities. It is perhaps illustrated by the vigorous survival of Lykian as a

written language in the fourth century, when compared with the much sparser remains of

written Karian.

56 Here Pl. 5, 56 (13mm, 1.76g, 12h; my coll., acq. 2002). See the discussion at SNG Keckman II, 512.

57 Pl. 5, 57 (11mm, 1.53g, 03h; my coll., ex Ebay 1227193854 (12/4/2001)), and Ashton 2002c.

58 Pl. 5, 58 (the larger coin; I do not have a photograph of the smaller). Both are in a private collection; the larger

is ex Ebay 1344390628 (12/4/2002; and see Ashton 2002c, p. 29, n. 63).

59 Kolb and Tietz 2001, pp. 402-3; Ashton 2002c, p. 29, n. 63.

60 Some late fi fth / early fourth century fractions of Xanthus with head of lion r. / astragalos and Lykian legend

ΑΡΞ (for Arñna = Xanthos) recently appeared on the market: see, for example Pl. 5, 59 (AR, 0.29g, 8mm; Ashton

coll., acq. 2003).


THE BEGINNING OF BRONZE COINAGE IN KARIA AND LYKIA 13

Finally I should mention three early chalkoi in the British Museum, for which I have

been able to fi nd no other parallels, and which may belong to Karia or Lykia. The fi rst has

a sphinx on the obverse and a bucranium on the reverse, and no visible legend (Pl. 5, 60:

11mm, 1.87g, 07h; BM 1920-7-28-40 ex H. Weber 6451). Its chunky fabric and border of

dots on the obverse suggest an early date. The sphinx perhaps suggests Kaunos, but this is far

from conclusive. The two other coins have a lion-scalp or panther head on the obverse and

a dolphin swimming left on the reverse, a border of dots on both sides, and no legend (Pl. 5,

61: 10mm, 1.06g, 02h; BM 1927-9-2-15 (Zitelli)). The illustrated British Museum specimen

was acquired with a batch of mainly Karian and Lykian coins, and a lion scalp occurs on the

silver of apparently contemporary Lykian dynasts. The bronze may thus belong to Lykia, but

this is far from certain.

BIBLIOGRAPHY

Akarca, A. (1959): Les monnaies grecques de Mylasa (Paris)

Ashton, R. (1998a): ‘The Coins of the Macedonian Kings, Lysimachos and Eupolemos in the Museums

of Fethiye and Afyon’, in A. Burnett et al. (1998), Coins of Macedonia and Rome. Essays in

Honour of Charles Hersh (London), pp. 19-48

Ashton, R. (1998b): ‘Keramos’ in R. Ashton et al., ‘Some Greek Coins in the British Museum’, NC

158, pp. 37-51 at 46-8

Ashton, R. (1999a): ‘The coinage of Nisyros’ in M. Amandry and S. Hurter (eds), Travaux de

Numismatique Grecque offerts à Georges Le Rider (London), pp. 15-24

Ashton, R. (1999b): ‘The Late Classical/Early Hellenistic Drachms of Knidos’, RN 154, pp. 63-94

Ashton, R. (1999c): ‘The Hellenistic Hemidrachms of Kaunos’, RBN CXLV, pp. 141-54

Ashton, R. (2001): ‘The Coinage of Rhodes 408-c.190 BC’ in A. Meadows and K. Shipton (eds),

Money and its Uses in the Ancient Greek World (Oxford), pp. 79-115

Ashton, R. (2002a): ‘Idyma’, in R. Ashton et al., ‘The Hekatomnus Hoard (CH 5.17, 8.96, 9.387)’, in

A. Meadows and U. Wartenberg (eds), Coin Hoards IX (London), pp. 95-158 at 122-5

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‘Opuscula Anatolica’, NC 162, pp. 11-31 at 11-16

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‘Opuscula Anatolica [I]’, NC 2002, pp. 11-31 at 29-30

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NC 163, pp. 1-47 at 32-6

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Yarkin, U. (1977): ‘More Coins of Syangela from Theangela’, NC 137, pp. 152-3


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