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Histria, half drachma
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half drachma from Istros (Histria), 4th - 3rd century BC
2-3 grams, silver, 4th - 3rd century BC
two heads, one inverted (tête bêche)
Greek thalassic symbol: sea eagle clawing a dolphin, inscription [I]ΣTPIH (ISTRIE) and ensign A beneath the dolphin

The ancient Greek silver coin from Istros (Histria) pictured above are present on Romanian coins through the kind permission of Mr. Balazs Aldor.


The two joined heads belong either to the Dioscuri or to other protective gods.

Silver Histrian drachmae circulated over the entire area of the later Dobrogea, having been found also in Muntenia and Moldavia. Other values apart from one drachma (weighing 7-8 grams in the 5th century and 5-6 in the 4th century BC) were also struck. The images above picture a half drachma. There exist also drachma quarters, oboli (1 obolus = 1/6 drahma), hemioboli (1 hemiobolus = 1/2 obolus = 1/12 drahma) and even less valuable divisionary coins.


The Ancient Pontic World | The History of Histria and More

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