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Coin (tetradrachm) - Head of Artemis

Head of Artemis

  • Object:

    Coin (tetradrachm)

  • Place of origin:

    Greece (made)

  • Date:

    ca. 258-202 BC (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Unknown

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Silver

  • Museum number:

    A.648-1910

  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

This ancient Greek coin is a didrachm of Ephesos. A drachm is the basic monetary unit in ancient Greece (and still today), originating from the word 'dragma', which means 'handful'. A drachm is a medium sized coin, weighing around 4 grams and with a diameter of about 1.6 to 1.9 cm. Greek coins were made by a crude form of striking, the rough blank of metal being placed between two dies engraved with the required image and the whole assemblage being hit with a hammer, thus obverse and reverse were impressed simultaneously, sometimes with uneven results.
The coins bequeathed to the V&A by George Salting include examples of silver coins from Syracuse of the 4th century BC, a set of gold imperial coins of Rome, and some fine specimens of bronze denarii of the Roman Empire.

Physical description

Obverse: Head of Artemis, wearing stephane; at her shoulder bow and quiver.
Reverse: Forepart of stag kneeling right and looking back. Greek Inscription.

Place of Origin

Greece (made)

Date

ca. 258-202 BC (made)

Artist/maker

Unknown

Materials and Techniques

Silver

Dimensions

Diameter: 2.16 cm, Weight: 6.5 g

Object history note

From the Salting bequest.

Descriptive line

Coin, didrachme of Ephesos, silver, head of Artemis, Greek, ca. 258-202 BC

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

'Salting Bequest (A. 70 to A. 1029-1910) / Murray Bequest (A. 1030 to A. 1096-1910)'. In: List of Works of Art Acquired by the Victoria and Albert Museum (Department of Architecture and Sculpture). London: Printed under the Authority of his Majesty's Stationery Office, by Eyre and Spottiswoode, Limited, East Harding Street, EC, p. 107
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Vol 1, Part 1, 'the Collection of Capt. E. G. Spencer-Churchill, M.C., of Northwick Park' and 'The Salting Collection in the Victoria and Albert Museum', London, published for the British Academy by Humphrey Milford, Oxford University Press, London and Spink and Son, London, S.N.G. 33

Materials

Silver

Subjects depicted

Quiver; Bow

Categories

Coins & Medals; Myths & Legends; Sculpture; Portraits

Collection

Sculpture Collection

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