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2020-09-18 Other articles >

Phoenician tetradrachma from the city of Arados

Minted in the reign of Phillip III Arridaeus, brother of Alexander the great, 323-317 BC

Tetradrachma (from tetras-four, drachme-drachma) is a silver coin that served as a major monetary unit in the domestic trade of Ancient Greece, Judea, Phoenicia and in international trade.

Phoenicia was the name of a region on a narrow strip of the Eastern Mediterranean coast (now Lebanon and Israel), which in antiquity was famous for its sailors: according to one version, the name Phoenicia comes from the Egyptian word 'Fenech' - the Builder of ships.

Beginning in the 12th century BC, the Phoenicians reached and then colonized Cyprus, Malta, Corsica, Sicily, Sardinia, and Crete by sea, and the largest colony of Phoenicia in North Africa was Carthage.
The convenient geographical position on the Mediterranean coast had both its advantages – for the development of fishing and navigation, and disadvantages – a small coastal country is easily accessible to conquerors. In the VIII century BC, Phoenicia was conquered by the Assyrians, in the VII century BC-by the Persians, and in 323 BC it was conquered by Alexander the great, including it in his Empire.  

Alexander the Great introduced coinage on a single model within his Empire, and the Phoenician coiners began to copy the style of the ancient Greeks: first of all, this affected mythology: Greek heroes and gods took their place on coins minted in the country.
On the Phoenician tetradrachm from my collection, the Greeks are located on both sides of the coin. The obverse shows the head of Hercules in a lion skin Cape, the reverse shows Zeus sitting on a throne, with an eagle in his right hand and a staff in his left.

Coin weight -16 grams, diameter - 25 mm, according to the Mueller catalog – 93.

The coin was minted after Alexander's death during the reign of his paternal brother, Arridaeus, who took the name Philip after his coronation. It was he who was preferred to the throne by the Macedonian phalanx to Alexander's unborn son by the Bactrian Princess Roxana.
323 BC – 317 BC are the years of the short reign of Philip III Arridaeus. And he reigned only nominally: first he was forcibly married, then his wife turned them around as she wanted, and then at the suggestion of Alexander the great's mother Olympias, he was killed for the company of his wife - presumably because his wife mismanaged the Empire on his behalf.

And tetradrachms were still used for a long time in Phoenicia, in Ancient Rome, and in Judea: in M. A. Bulgakov's novel 'the Master and Margarita', it was the tetradrachms – 30 silver pieces-that Judas received from
Name of the high priest Caiaphas for the denunciation of Yeshua Ha-Notsri.

We must pay tribute to the high priest: for the betrayal, he paid Judas in hard currency-30 tetradrachms by weight were half a kilo of silver.

Финикийская тетрадрахма из города Арадос

Мюллер 93

Финикийская тетрадрахма

Country : Финикия
Value : Тетрадрахма
Year : 323 г. - 317 г. до н.э.
Mint :
Circulation :
Material : Серебро
Weight : 16
Diameter : 25

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