Amorgos Ancient Bronze Coins

Amorgos, to the south-east of Naxos, is the easternmost island of the Cyclades and is included by Strabo amongst the Sporades (now the Dodecanese). With Kos and Astypalea lying to the south-east, it is a sense the natural approach from the Dodecanese to the heart of the Cyclades. Though a rocky island, it also has some fertile plains which in ancient times werte controlled by Minoa, the city built on a rocky hill that dominated the area. The other two major cities on the island were Aigiale in the north and Arkesine in the south. All three were in existence during the Geometric and Archaic periods. The island was originally settled by Naxians and subsequently by the inhabitants of Samos. The influence exercised by these two islands on Amorgos is apparent in the archaeological record.

Aigiale Bronze coin 3nd-2nd century BC. O. Head of Zeus or Asklepios Arkesine Bronze coin 3nd-2nd century BC. O. Head of Dionysos.

During the 3rd and 2nd c. BC, all three ancient cities on the island struck a few bronze coins to meet the needs of local commercial transactions. Iconographically, the coins of both Minoa and Arkesine are influenced by the cult of Dionysos. They depict the head of the god wearing an ivy wreath, and a kantharos.


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