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A crazy ode to nymphs, for the nymph-ode-maniacs


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Nothing on earth is more intriguing, to me, than feminine beauty. Few things, save a few goddesses, exemplify this as the ancients with their nymphs. 


Here are some of my favorites:


Sicily, under the tyrant Gelon Silver tetradrachm (16.91 gr, 25 mm)

Obv: Slow quadriga being driven r. by male charioteer, Nike above crowning horses

Rev: Head of Artemis-Arethusa right, 4 dolphins around legend, ΣVRAKOΣI-ON

Popular type. Boeh-353, SNG-113 Toned VF, obverse somewhat grainy. Purchased from Bill Rosenblum March 2022


SICILY. Syracuse. Deinomenid Tyranny 485-466 BC. AR Tetradrachm (24mm - 17.45 g). Struck circa 480-475 BC. Charioteer driving walking quadriga right, holding kentron and reins; Nike flying above crowning horses / Diademed head of Arethusa right, surrounded by four dolphins swimming clockwise. Boehringer 134 (V60/R93); SNG ANS 38 (same dies); Randazzo -. rev sl off-ctr, sl surface imperfections,most notably a horizontal scratch like flaw in obv right field. (Cited from: https://www.cointalk.com/threads/gelon-of-gela-sicily-tyrant-of-syracuse-my-new-most-beautiful-coin-according-to-rc-hes-right.396297/#post-8334242)



Lokris Opuntia Hemidrachm around 350 BCE 2.60 g. Head of a nymph/Persephone with reed wreath, simple ear pendants and necklace to the right / Ajax in the Corinthian helmet with drawn short sword storming to the right, holding above the left arm oval shield with a lion as inner jewelry, spear lying on the ground. BMC 26 Very nice



EUBOIA. Histiaia. 3rd-2nd centuries BC. Tetrobol (Silver, 15 mm, 2.06 g, 9 h). Vine-wreathed head of nymph Histiaia to right, wearing pendant earring and necklace. Rev. IΣTIAIE-ΩN Nymph seated to right on stern of galley, holding stylis in her left hand and resting her right on the deck; on the side of the stern, wing; below to left, monogram, labrys. ANS 1944.100.24022. BCD Euboia -. Lovely style; well-struck and rather uncommon. Minor die break on reverse, otherwise, very fine. From the Vineyard Collection, ex Hirsch, March 2002 ,219 (part of lot). Ex: Nomos Obols 



Sicily, HimeraSICILY, Himera. Circa 415-409 BC. Æ Hemilitron (16mm, 3.3 g, 6h). Head of nymph left, hair bound in ampyx and sphendone; six pellets (mark of value) before / Six pellets (mark of value) within wreath. Kraay, Bronze , group b, 3; CNS 35; SNG ANS 186. (c. 415-409 BC), cast Æ Hemilitron, head of nymph left, wearing ampyx and sphendone, rev. six pellets in wreath (Calciati I, pp. 43, no. 35; SNG ANS 186), Off center, obverse with excellent detail



Crepereius M.f. Rocus (69 BC). AR serratus denarius (19mm, 1h). NGC Choice Fine, bankers marks. Rome. Draped bust of Amphitrite right, seen from behind; Sea anemone (erroneously listed as oenochoe by Heritage) left, I right / Q•CREPER•M•F / ROCVS, Neptune driving biga of hippocamps right, brandishing trident in right hand, reins in left; I above. Crawford 399/1b. Sydenham 796. Crepereia 1. Ex: CNG 261 lot 239 Aug 2011, Auctiones GMBH #67 March 2020, Purchased from Heritage Feb 2022. From the Werner Collection.1224925_1591361402-removebg-preview.png.d6c37babfaf0eec3bc6f8001c7f78e80.png

Creperius, Rocus

Denarius. 68 BC. Uncertain mint. (Ffc-657). (Craw-399-1b). (Cal-522). Obv: Bust of the back of the Sea Goddess to the right, C to the right, to the left crab. Rev .: Neptune with trident, in biga pulled by hippocampi to the right, below Q CREPER M (F) / ROCVS. Ag. 3.61 g. Usually struck off center. Very scarce. VF.

Ex: Tauler & Fau



Please share some of yours!

Edited by Ryro
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Fun multi-media presentation, as always, @Ryro! Cool coins!! The tetradrachm under Gelon purchase from Bill Rosenblum remains my favorite. Lovely coin!

I have to turn to the Roman provincial series for nymphs and I have only a handful. I've posted this one several times.

Lucius Verus, 161-169 CE.
Roman Provincial Æ assarion, 4.23 g, 18 mm.
Thrace, Augusta Trajana, 161-169 CE.
Obv: ΑV ΚΑΙ Λ ΑV-ΡΗ ΟVΗΡΟϹ, bare head, right.
Rev: ΑV-Γ-ΟV-ϹΤΗϹ | ΤΡΑΙΑΝΗϹ, three nymphs, stolate, standing facing, arms draped on each other's shoulders and holding unknown objects (thymiatera? tripods?) at sides.
Refs: RPC IV 10343 (temporary); Schonert-Geiss 89; Varbanov II 909; Moushmov (1912) --; Moushmov Online 2987A; Staal, pl. 2, fig. 12.


Crispina, 178-182 CE.
Roman provincial Æ 26.1 mm, 8.38 g, 11 h.
Mysia, Germe, issue 1a, 179-180 CE.
Obv: ΚΡΙⳞΠΙΝ-Α ⳞΕΒΑⳞ, bare-headed and draped bust, right.
Rev: ΓΕΡΜ-Η-ΝΩΝ, two Nymphs(?) standing, facing, heads turned towards each other, each emptying an oenochoe over pillar and holding her dress (or towel); between them on the ground, an amphora.
Refs: RPC IV.2, 654 (temporary); Lindgren III, 464; SNG France 982-82.

Julia Domna, AD 193-217.
Roman provincial Æ triassarion, 24 mm, 7.77 g.
Moesia Inferior, Marcianopolis, AD 193-211.
Obv: IOVΛIA ΔO-MNA CEB, bare-headed and draped bust right.
Rev: MAPKIANOΠOΛITΩN, three nymphs standing facing, wearing tunics over long, lightly billowing skirts and clasping hands, the two outer nymphs with heads turned inwards and each holding a jug in her free hand.
Refs: Varbanov 892 var (obv. legend); Staal 89.15 (plate 3, fig. 15, p. 157); BMC --; Moushmov --; SGI --; AMNG I (Pick) --; Lindgren --; Winsemann --
Note: Obverse and reverse die match to Staal plate coin (Gorny & Mosch Auction 108, lot 1421, April 3, 2001).


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As always, a nice choice of topic!

Nymphs are a popular subject on Hellenistic coins.


Troas, Skamandria
c. 350-300 BCE
Æ 19mm, 5.04g, 3h
Wreathed head of nymph Ida r. R/ Fir tree; Σ-K flanking.
SNG Copenhagen 464.


Thessaly. Meliboea Æ12 / Grapes
400-350 BCE 12.17mm 1.98g
Obverse: Head of nymph right
Reverse: ME-ΛI, bunch of grapes hanging from vine
Rogers 393
Ex CNG 250 (23 February 2011) 



Paphlagonia, Sinope. Ariarathes I of Cappadocia
Circa 325 BCE
AR Drachm 5.53 gm, 17mm
Persic standard
Obv.: 'm in Aramaic, head of the nymph Sinope to left, her hair bound in a sakkos, wearing triple-pendant earring and pearl necklace; to left, aphlaston.
Rev.: 'ariyrth' in Aramaic, sea-eagle with spread wings standing on a dolphin to left.
HGC 7, 434; SNG BM Black Sea 1459; SNG Stancomb 761



Caria, Iasos
c. 4th-3rd century BCE
Æ 8mm, 1.02g, 12h
Laureate head of Apollo facing slightly l.
R/ Head of nymph r., hair in sakkos; prawn to r.
Ashton, The pre-imperial coinage of Iasos, NC 167 (2007), p. 53, pl. 7, 17-19



Thessaly, Atrax
Late 3rd - early 2nd centuries BCE
Æ 2.11g, 15mm, 6h
Laureate head of the nymph Boura (or Apollo) to right; hoof of horse to left (or quiver over shoulder)
Horse standing to right, head lowered; ΑΤΡΑ above, [ΓΙΩΝ below]
Cf. BCD Thessaly II 58.11-12 (Boura, horse’s hoof); HGC 4, 358 (Apollo, quiver).
Ex J. Greiff Collection

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Cool topic!

This is Satyra, mother of Taras...

Taras, Calabria

470-465 BC
AR Didrachm (18.5mm, 7.95g)
O: Phalanthos riding dolphin left, arms outstretched; scallop shell below.
R: Head of nymph Satyra left, hair tied back in knot, within circular border; all within circular incuse.
Vlasto 145 (3rd Group); Fischer-Bossert 95, V49/R63 (Group 5); SNG France 1596-99; SNG ANS 843; HN Italy 838; HGC I, 756


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And while many may disagree, I believe that this is Satyra too...

Taras, Calabria

281-228 BC
AR Didrachm (20mm, 6.95g)
O: Diademed head of nymph Satyra left, wearing triple-pendant earring.
R: Nude youth on horseback right crowning horse and holding reins; star of eight rays above, dolphin below, TA beneath raised foreleg.
Vlasto 1036-37, Cote 548; McGill II, 131; SNG ANS 1301; HN Italy 1098; Sear 366v


Edited by Phil Anthos
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Kyme Ar Tetradrachm 155-143 BC Obv Head of the nymph Kyme Rv Prancing horse right, left hoof raised over one handled jug all within wreath Oakley 3 16.74 grms 30 mm Photo by W. Hansenkyme3.jpg.7973420d60be365d654f08bc64200724.jpg

This coin was struck  to help finance discord within the Seleucid Kingdom. Oh those sneaky Kings of Pergamon

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A few more  nymphs here, though not of the beauty of Kyme!

The nymph Himera-

Sicily, Himera, Didrachm, ~430 BC
Nude rider dismounting from a horse g, retrograde legend in exergue. The nymph Himera standing facing, head left, pouring libation over altar, filleted caduceus to right 





Himera pictured alongside a shrimp, as you  do....



The nymph  Kamarina -

SICILY. Kamarina. Circa 410-405 B.C. AR litra. .71 gm. 11 mm. Head of Kamarina left, hair in sphendone / Swan left, wings spread, on waves; below, fish left




And the nypmh (depending on paternity claims between a river god and a mortal king)  Kyrene.

Kyrene  1/10 Stater. ~331-322 BC. Horned head of Zeus Ammon to right/ Head of Kyrene facing slightly to right.

As this is  not  the most  lovely picture of her,   a more recent image is also presented.

16291-9-213-1_orig.jpg.48e6ffc8e29d1ccdb9221c30ca20b95b.jpg  cyrene-and-cattle-edward-calvert_orig.jpg.a1e36824c4fea0c011f63c8633ea8377.jpg

Edited by Deinomenid
photo sizing
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Nice topic, nice coins !


Some nymphs:


Euboia, Chalkis
AR Drachm, circa 338-308 BC
Obv.: Head of the nymph Chalkis right
Rev.: Eagle flying, carrying serpent; ΛA and trident right, X above
Ag, 3.53g, 15.4x16.4mm
Ref.: Picard, Chalcis, Emission 10
Ex BCD Collection
Ex William P. Wallace Collection



Larissa, Thessaly
AR Drachm
Obv.: Head of the nymph Larissa facing slightly left
Rev: Mare with foal, both standing right; ΛAPIΣ above, AIΩN in exergue.
Ag, 5.98g
Ref.: CNG 292, Lancaster 2012, Nr. 85 (same dies)



Thrace, Thasos
AR Stater (Circa 510-463 BC)
Obv.: Nude Satyr rushing right, carrying off protesting nymph
Rev.: Quadripartite incuse square
Ag, 9.59g, 21.8mm
Ref.: SNG Copenhagen 1008.

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From Velia the local nymph (Hyele?)...

Velia, Lucania

465-440 BC (Period II: Pre-Athena Group)
AR Drachm (15mm, 3.52g)
O: Head of nymph right, wearing beaded necklace.
R: Owl with closed wing perched right on olive branch, head facing; YEΛH behind.
Williams 79; HGC I, 1328; Hands Class VI; HN Italy 1265; Sear 251

~ Peter 


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  • 1 month later...

Syracuse, Second Democracy

415-405 BC
AE Hemilitron (16mm, 4.59g)
O: Head of Arethusa left, hair in ampyx, wearing necklace and sphendone.
R: Quadripartite incuse, eight-rayed star within incuse at center.
HGC 2, 1481; Sear 1185; CNS II, 16; SNG ANS 398
ex Aegean Numismatics

Arethusa was the Goddess of the local spring at Ortygia, the heart of Syracuse.

~ Peter 


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