Athena & Nike - Alexander the Great Gold Stater - Short History

Athena & Nike - Alexander the Great Gold Stater - Short History

A gold stater minted during the kingship of Alexander the Great.

Alexander the Great (356 BC – 323 BC), also known as Alexander III, king of Macedon, was one of the most successful military commanders in history, conquering most of the known world before his death; he is regarded as one of the greatest military strategists and tacticians who ever lived.

Very soon after Alexander the Great's ascended to the throne, he started a monetary reform in order to make the Macedonian coinage competitive and international. Adopting the Athenian monetary standard for the silver coins (tetradrachms and drachmas) he used on the obverse and reverse sides themes from Macedonian mythology (as the depiction of Hercules) while keeping on the other side themes from the Pan-Hellenic pantheon (as the Olympian God Zeus or Goddess Athena).

On the gold staters he issued, he introduced the depictions of Athena and Nike (Victory). He chose Athena, because according to Iliad, which was Alexander’s favourite book, she was the patroness of the besiegers of Troy and Nike, because she was the goddess of victory. All coins issued by Alexander, have the inscription : "ALEXANDROU" meaning “belonging to Alexander”.

The original coin is actually exhibited in the Numismatic Museum of Greece.

Posted on 2017-07-25 Coins History, Ancient Coins History

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