Corinthia. Corinth. c. 375-300 BC

Corinthia. Corinth. c. 375-300 BC


AR Stater, 8.65g (20mm, 5h). Ϙ Pegasus flying left / Head of Athena to left, wearing Corinthian helmet; behind, Λ and uncertain symbol.

References: Difficult to find in standard references due to symbols being mostly off-flan. BCD Corinth -. Ravel -. Calciati -.

Grade: Beautifully toned. Light die rust on the obverse, otherwise, good very fine (gk1243)

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Corinth was an important city in ancient times due to its advantageous position of being close to the isthmus connecting the Saronic and Corinthian Gulfs.  Connecting the Peloponnese to mainland Greece, the isthmus helped elevate the importance of Corinth at the time. In addition, Corinth had a large citadel, the Acro Corinthus, which further strengthened their strategic position.

At the time that this stater was struck, Corinth was engaged in the Corinthian War against Sparta. Often Corinth was involved in some military battle due to its strategic relevance. Eventually the city was taken by Philip II of Macedon and remained under Macedonian control until the Romans destroyed the city in 146 BC.

The coinage of Corinth and the surrounding cities are beautifully designed with a vibrant pegasus on the obverse and a head of Athena on the reverse. The earliest of the Corinthian “colts” were struck in the early part of the 6th century BC. The pegasus was on the obverse and a mill sail incuse on the reverse were the initial motifs. Later, this transitioned into an archaic Athena and Pegasus. Over time the Athena became more classical in stature. The colonies around Corinth all used similar motifs and varied the symbol below the pegasus to denote which city-state it came.