Thrace 3.0: Coinage In the Land of Orpheus

Numismatic Collection in the Bode-Museum

 

Map of ancient Thrace

Map of ancient Thrace

The ancient region of Thrace, which today comprises Bulgaria, the European part of Turkey and northern Greece, is characterized by a varied landscape, an eventful history and a rich and diverse coinage.
The exhibition in the Bode-Museum will display Thracian coins from the archaic to the Roman period that were minted by Greek colonies, indigenous tribes, local dynasties and Roman provincial administrators and that depict underlying identity constructions.
From Topoi’s perspective, the focus is primarily on two display cases on the coinages of the Thracian cities of Pautalia and Philippopolis. These coinages are examined in projects by Lili Grozdanova and Ulrike Peter of research project (B-4-2) Region and Memorie: Local history and local myths on Thracian provincial coins. Selected specimens of the coinages of these cities serve as examples of the transmission of historical knowledge, while other  designs illustrate topographical characteristics and urban features. An important position is occupied by the Greco-Roman gods depicted on the coins; their local characteristics are an important clue to how urban identity manifests itself in these coinages. In addition, emphasis is also placed on manifestations of successful integration into the Roman Empire. Coins from both poleis demonstrate an interesting interplay between these manifestations and local identity features.

Coins are a particularly good medium for investigating the potential influence that social, economic and administrative changes can exert on local identity constructions. The exhibition will demonstrate this clearly by drawing on coinages from 44 Thracian cities. It will also emphasize the extent to which these coins reflect or even propagate not only a local, but also a shared, regional Thracian identity.

Muenze_1_obv Muenze_2_obv Muenze_3_obv

Muenze_1_rev

Pautalia, Bronze, 198-205 AD, Obverse: AVT K M AVPH – ANTΩNINOC. Bust of Caracalla with a laurel wreath, Reverse: OVΛ-ΠI-AC ΠAVT//AΛIAC. Cityscape with five temple-like structures on top of and beside each other, and a cave amid trees and plants. In a large temple, Asclepius stands at lower center in the intercolumnation. Beside him stand three charites. Münzkabinett Berlin, IKMK 18243839.

Philippopolis, Bronze, 209-211 AD, Obverse: AVT K Π CE-ΠTI ΓETAC. Draped, armored bust of Geta with laurel wreath, facing right, Reverse: ΦIΛIΠΠOΠO/ΛEITΩN. Orpheus sits holding a lyre on a rock facing right, surrounded by a pig, a stork, a wolf, a duck, a dog, a marten, a lion and a hare. Berlin, Münzkabinett, IKMK 18200873.

Philippopolis, Bronze, 209-211 AD, Obverse: AVT K Π CE-ΠTI ΓETAC. Draped, cuirassed bust of Geta with laurel wreath, facing right, Reverse: ΦIΛIΠΠOΠO/ΛEITΩN. Orpheus sits holding a lyre on a rock facing right, surrounded by a pig, a stork, a wolf, a duck, a dog, a marten, a lion and a hare. Berlin, Münzkabinett, IKMK 18200873.

Muenze_3_rev

Philippopolis, Bronze, 218-212 AD, Obverse: AVT K M [AVPHΛ – ANTΩNEI]NOC CEB. Draped, cuirassed bust of Elagabalus with laurel wreath, facing right, Reverse: MHTΡΟΠΟΛ[ΕΩC ΦΙΛΙΠ]ΠΟΠ[ΟΛΕΩC] // NEOKOPO[V]. Hermes and the emperor Elagabalus as togatus together hold a neocorate temple. Beneath it is a table with a prize crown, on it are five apples, and under it, against the table leg, is a moneybag. Berlin, Münzkabinett, IKMK 18207397.

 

Einladung Thrakien 3.0

 

Date

October 16, 2015 to March 30, 2016

Exhibition opening: October 15, 2015

Opening hours

Tuesday to sunday
11 am to 6 pm
Thursday until 8 pm

Entrance

10 Euro, reduced 5 Euro

Place

Bode-Museum
Special Exhibition room of the Münzkabinett (Numismatic Collection)
Museumsinsel Berlin
Doorway: Monbijoubrücke

Research Projects

→ (B-4-2) Region and Memorie: Local history and local myths on Thracian provincial coins
→ Corpus Nummorum Thracorum