www.locriantica.it

LOCRI EPIZEPHYRII



Salvatore La Rosa
WWW.LOCRIANTICA.IT Welcome to Magna Graecia ARCHAEOLOGICAL FINDS

 
COINS

 
The monetary tradition of the ancient Locri Epizephyrii is definitely peculiar if it's compared to other cities of Magna Graecia and to the whole Greek world (excepted Sparta, and this isn't surprising because we know how many affinities that city had with the ancient Locri).
As a matter of fact, the Locrian city-state started to mint coins at a very late stage, during the IV century b.C., while elsewhere it was a common custom since the VI century b.C.

Silver Locrian Coin

Silver Locrian Coin
SILVER LOCRIAN COIN (IV century b.C.)
(Image source: Prof. G. Incorpora's private archive)

That was caused by the extremely conservative Locrian ruling class which, following Zaleukos' strict legislation, wanted to preserve, unchanged, the economical structure of the polis. The agricultural property and its development was always preferred to commerce development, therefore there was no need to mint coins.

By the way, during the archaeological excavations, were unearthed many coins of the VI and of the V century b.C. (minted in Sybaris, Kaulon, Kroton, etc.) which let the scholars suppose that even if the Locrians didn't mint coins, they usually accepted them as payment for commercial exchanges.

Silver Locrian Coin

Silver Locrian Coin
SILVER LOCRIAN COIN (IV century b.C.)
(Image source: Prof. G. Incorpora's private archive)

Thanks to the bronze tablets of the Sanctuary of Olympian Zeus, the experts were able to discover the Locrian monetary system which, even if younger than the ones of the other poleis, proved to be fairly complex. And this complexity is supported by the large amount of ancient Locrian coins which were brought to light both in official and in illegal excavations (as a matter of fact, many Locrian coins, illegally sold, can be viewed today in many museums and private collections all around the world).

Golden Locrian Coin

Golden Locrian Coin
GOLDEN LOCRIAN COIN (IV century b.C.)
(Image source: Prof. G. Incorpora's private archive)

The coins unearthed in the area of the old polis can be divided into three groups: golden (really rare), silver and bronze, and they were minted (in Locri and elsewhere) between the VI century b.C. and the Byzantine age.

The most beautiful and important of them can be viewed nowadays at the National Museum of Reggio Calabria; some collections are also preserved at the National Archaeological Museum of Locri Epizephyrii.

     
     

 

 

Back to the top of the page
BACK TO THE TOP


Valid HTML 4.01!                     Valid CSS 2.1!
in addition to the 22391 visitors that the site had from the 05/19/2001 until the use of the new visitors counter