Classical or Hellenistic Hemidrachm of Thebesca. 338 BCE-315 BCE
9/16 x 0.613 x 0.081 in. (1.4 x 1.558 x 0.207 cm)
Bryn Mawr College
Accession Number: C.1819
Geography: Europe, Greece, Boeotia, Thebes
Classification: Exchange Media; Coins
Keywords Click a term to view the records with the same keywordThis object has the following keywords:
Animalia*, Classical*, coins*, crescents*, Hellenistic*, kantharoi*, shields*, silver*, Strigiformes*
- Animalia - Kingdom containing multicellular organisms having cells bound by a plasma membrane and organized into tissue and specialized tissue systems that permit them to either move about in search of food or to draw food toward themselves. Unable to make their own food within themselves, as photosynthetic plants do, they rely on consuming preformed food. They possess a nervous system with sensory and motor nerves, enabling them to receive environmental stimuli and to respond with specialized movements.
- Classical - Refers to an ancient Greek style and period that begins around 480 BCE, when the Greek city-states defeated the Persian invaders, and ends around 323 BCE, with the death of Alexander the Great. It is characterized by the rebuilding of cities after the Persian wars, the flourishing of philosophy, drama, architecture, sculpture, painting, and the other arts. In the visual arts, it is known for the mastery of the human form and sophistication of architectural design.
- coins - Pieces of metal stamped by government authority for use as money.
- crescents - Motifs consisting of a curved segment of a circle, often suggesting a crescent moon.
- Hellenistic - Refers to the ancient Greek period, culture, and art of ancient Greece that lasted from about 330 BCE to 31 BCE, when Augustus defeated Cleopatra and Mark Antony. It is characterized by an international culture that was ushered in by Alexander the Great's conquest of India, Egypt, and the Near East. In architecture and art, the style is marked by greater sophistication, complexity, and diversity than was known in earlier Greek styles. Architecture diverges from strict rules of earlier periods. Sculptors emphasized more realistic figures in a greater variety of poses than in earlier Greek art.
- kantharoi - Ancient Greek drinking vessels featuring a deep, footed bowl set on a tall footed stem and two vertical side handles extending from the bottom of the vessel to the rim. The kantharos is intimately associated with the wine god Dionysos, who is often depicted on vases holding a kantharos of type A or a rhyton.
- shields - General term for armor pieces carried in the hand or on the arm, used to parry an opponent's blows or provide shelter from projectiles. They have existed worldwide throughout history in a wide variety of sizes, shapes, and materials.
- silver - Pure metallic element having symbol Ag and atomic number 47; a malleable, ductile, white metal with characteristic sheen, considered a precious metal. Silver is widely distributed throughout the world, occurring rarely as metallic silver (in Peru, Norway) but more often as silver-gold alloys and silver ore. Today silver is obtained as a byproduct in the refinement of gold, lead, copper, or zinc ores. Silver was smelted from the ore galena as early as 3800 BCE. As a pure metal, silver is second to gold in malleability and ductility, can be polished to a highly reflective surface, and used -- typically in an alloy -- in jewelry, coinage, photography, mirrors, electrical contacts, and tableware.
- Strigiformes - Order containing around 180 species in two families of nocturnal raptorial birds with hooked beaks, strong talons, and soft plumage. All owls have the same general appearance, which is characterized by a flat face, small hooked beak, short tail, round wings, and large, forward-facing eyes. The bird became associated with Athena, the Greek goddess of wisdom and also owls became symbolic of intelligence because it was thought that they could forsee events. Also, because of their nocturnal existence and hooting sounds, owls have also been symbols associated with the occult. In the Middle Ages, the owl became a symbol of the darkness before the coming of Christ.
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