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Let's see your chirples and glurples!


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Note: for anyone who doesn't want to read the backstory, a 'chirple' is a small coin with a bird on it. A 'glurple' is a small coin with a fish on it. So, I'm asking people to show theirs.

As some of you know, I also run a nature photography page. There, I post a photo of an animal and then tell a funny story. Recent examples include an eagle who drops a mitre saw on his car accidentally, an advertisement for a weasel lawyer, and a recipe for frogs from Chef Oiseaubleu, who is a blue heron. As part of this imaginary world, all birds and mammals across the world have a unified currency called the chirple. I later invented glurples for marine animals and fish.

Occasionally, I'll post about coins because it's my page and I can write what I want. They don't typically receive much of a response, but the one below wound up with over 100k views. I'm not sure where it was shared, but it seems to have wound up on some white-supremist site because I've been deleting hate comments the last few days. I have no idea why.

Below is what I wrote. Note that I skipped over the "Pantikapaion vs Myrmekion" debate because I assumed my readers wouldn't care.


Pictured here is the currency of insects - a themie. As you know, outside of humans, there are three main currencies of the world - chirples (birds and mammals), glurples (fish and other things underwater), and themies. It depicts an ant because the insects voted on the obverse and ants won because they're the most numerous. They then named it after their favorite movie.

Now, for those who doubt that story, I have an even more fantastic one. This is actually an ancient coin called a tetartamorion. It's made of silver and was minted in a city called Myrmekion ('ant hill' in Greek) in the Cimmerian Bosporos (now Crimea) roughly 2500 years ago. Somehow it survived, despite being so small, all those years - after which I bought it.

Which of those stories do you find more plausible?

This got me to thinking. Do I have any examples of chirples or glurples? Below are the best ones I have today. The "themie" is a much better example though since the reverse is an incuse square so there's no human portrait.



Baktria, Local issues
Circa 285/3-280/78 BCE
AR Obol 8.5mm, 0.55 g, 6h
Attic standard. Uncertain mint in the Oxus region. Head of Kybele or Tyche right, wearing mural crown /
Eagle standing left, head right, with wings spread; grape bunch to lower right.
Cf. SMAK p. 70 and pl. 30 (for rev.); Bopearachchi, Sophytes –; SNG ANS –; HGC 12, –



Bithynia, Tios
Circa 300 BCE
Æ 1.16g, 9mm, 6h
Laureate head of Zeus to left /
Eagle with closed wings standing to left; ΤΙΑ-ΝΟZ around.
Asia Minor Coins Online 13236; SNG Tübingen 2151; HGC 7, 605 var. (rev legend)



Mysia. Harpagion
circa 400-375 BCE
Æ 10 mm, 1,19 g
Obv: Laureate head of nymph right, with hair in sphendone.
Fish right; below, grain ear right.
AMNG IV 597; CNG 88, lot 286; Triton V, lot 486 = Asia Minor Coins online #920.


Does anyone else have any chirples or glurples?

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Amusing read and some wonderful coins. A couple of chirpies for you


PERGAMON (Mysia) AE16.
Obverse: Head of Athena right, wearing helmet decorated with 8 pointed star.
Reverse: AΘHNAΣ / NIKHΦOPOY. Owl standing facing on palm frond right, with wings spread. Monograms ΓΑ and ΑΡ either sides of owl in fields.
Leipzig 1102-1103. Pergamon mint, ca. 200-133 BC.  2,9 g - 16 mm


Bust of Athena right in crested helmet
Text above and beneath eagle alighting right on maeander pattern between two pilei with stars above, and a star upper middle..
AΠAME KΩKOY, Kokos (magistrate)
PHRYGIA, Apameia. SA24. (Ae. 7.76g)- 88-40 BC Kokos. SNG Copenhagen 161-2; BMC 78-82; HGC 7, 670, SNG von Aulock 3466-3467; Walcher 2746.

The only glurpies I have are modern Icelandic coins


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Nice idea for a thread!

 Chirple (also has an additional lizard):


Macedonia, Eion, AR trihemiobol, ca. 460-400 BC. Obv: Goose standing r., head turned l.; lizard curving l. above; H to lower r. Rev: quadripartite incuse square. 12 mm, 0,71g. Ref: SNG Cop 179.

Glurple (a tunny, a lion, and a boar on one tiny coin – what's not to love about it!):


Mysia, Kyzikos, AR hemiobol (?), c. 480–450 BC. Obv: roaring lion’s head l.; star above. Rev: forepart of boar l.; tunny behind. 8mm, 0.25g.

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Neat theme!

Ionia/ Mysia

EL 1/48 Stater ND 600-575BC

Kyzikos Mint

"Tuna Fish Head"

Karia/ Kos

EL 1/48 Stater ND 625-600BC

Kos Mint


7mm.      0.33g.


Sicily/ Syracuse

AV 10 Litrai ND 

Syracyse Mint

Arethusa/ Octopus

Agathockles 312-289 BC


22f21163abfb4797e046e668b23d5352 (4).jpg

3562677_1670159750.l (3).jpg

69584_sizilien-syrakus (7).jpg

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