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Coin Detail
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ID:     81000459
Type:     Greek
Region:     PHOCIS
City:     Delphi
Issuer:     Amphiktionic issues
Date Ruled:     Circa 338/6-334/3 BC
Metal:     Silver
Denomination:     Stater
Struck / Cast:     struck
Weight:     12.10 g
Die Axis:     10 h
Obverse Description:     Head of Demeter left, wearing grain-ear wreath and veil
Reverse Legend:     AMΦI-KTIO-NΩN
Reverse Description:     Apollo seated left on omphalos, right elbow resting on top of large kithara to left, left hand holding long laurel branch that rests on his left shoulder; tripod to left
Primary Reference:     Kinns, Amphictionic, dies O3/R6
Reference2:     Svoronos, Delphi 32
Reference3:     SNG Cop -
Reference4:     Gulbenkian 487 (same dies)
Photograph Credit:     Classical Numismatic Group
Grade:     VF, lightly toned
Notes:     Sale: CNG 81, Lot: 459 Choice for grade. In 373/2 BC, an earthquake destroyed the great Temple of Apollo at Delphi. Although reconstruction on the site commenced, the Phokian occupation of the sanctuary during the Sacred War of 355-346 BC prevented any full-scale work from occurring. In 338/6 BC, the Amphiktionic League decided to melt down the coinage comprising the temple treasury and mint a new series of coinage that would be used to finance a full reconstruction project. This new series comprised staters, drachms, and hemidrachms, whose types reflected the two sanctuaries controlled by the Amphiktionic League: the Temple of Apollo at Delphi and the Temple of Demeter at Anthela (near Thermopylai). The obverse of the staters depicts a left-facing head of Demeter, wearing a veil and grain-ear wreath in her traditional guise as the goddess of grain and fertility. On the reverse, Apollo is seated in a contemplative manner on an omphalos, holding a laurel branch and resting his elbow on a kithara. The omphalos, kithara, and laurel branch each recall a significant aspect of Apollo’s mythology, with the omphalos signifying his oracular seat at Delphi, the kithara his dominion over music, and the laurel (ἡ Δ?ΦΝΗ) his personal badge, the result of his unrequited love for the nymph Daphne.