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The "Miltiades" Tetradrachms

The Pontian

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This issue of coins where minted by Miltiades but this coins have an average weight around 16.5gr. Is it really an ATTIC STANDARD COIN MINTED BY MILTIADES OR A PERSIAN STANDARD TRIDRACHM MINTED LATER ?

In 515 BC he was sent by the Athenian tyrant, Hippias, to rule the Chersonese, a strategic point in Athens' grain trade. Miltiades' brother, Stesagoras, and uncle, Miltiades the Elder, had previously ruled there. As tyrant of the Chersonese, Miltiades found himself obliged to submit to Persian rule, and served in the campaign of Darios I against the Skythians. His Persian allegiance was short-lived, and he joined against Darios in the Ionian Revolt.

This issue dates from the Ionian Revolt (499-494 BC). Miletos was the principal mover in the revolt, and city after city joined the cause against Persia. Athens sent a fleet to assist her Ionian cousins. The chief city of the Chersonese was Kardia, originally a Milesian foundation. Other cities expelled their pro-Persian tyrants, but the tyrant of the Chersonese was an Athenian with no love of the Persians, and Miltiades threw off his Persian allegiance and issued this coinage which proclaimed his loyalty to the revolt. Struck on the Attic rather than the Persian standard, these tetradrachms display the lion of Miletos on the obverse and a head of Athena, reflecting Athenian coins of the time, on the reverse.



Edited by The Pontian
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Okay. Even if Miliades was Athenian there is no reason for him to mint coins on the Attic standard. In fact these coins appear to be on the same standard as that employed by Ainos a city that is very close by. Thus he would have had a good reason to strike coins using a local weight standard. The 16.2 grms standard has been called a tri siglos by Hoover and that is a distinct possibility. As the siglos was the principle silver coin standard throughout much of the region a tri siglos would fit in better than another coin of a completely different weight. I see nothing that would indicate a later date, These coins are scarce and appear to have been minted over a short period of time. 

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