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Oldest/First known coin?


thedeadpoint
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What was the first known coin?

 

...in recognizeable form? Not a plate of metal. A rock. a tooth. another person. or anything like that. I mean metal formed in a disc like shape with some markings that denominate it.

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Differentiate money and coin, money in it's varying forms is much older than coinage.

 

Some of my own earliest monies

 

I anticipated these suggestions but the Olbia coin you have looks to be the first of what i mean by "coin".

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This is one of the earliest coins that was produced in quantities enough that most collectors can afford them.

 

ooh. cool.

 

well, what is one of the earliest coins produced in any quantity? even if they are forbiddingly rare for most collectors.

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miletos.jpg

 

Ionia, Miletos AR 7 with forepart of Lion and star pattern on reverse, ca. 600BC. This is one of the earliest coins that was produced in quantities enough that most collectors can afford them.

 

 

Nice. If you don't mind me asking about how much is that coin worth?

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They can be found on eBay and also Vcoins.com, I think I paid less than $20 for this one.

 

Interesting, thank you. I'm surprised something that old isn't worth more. Is it because you run the risk of purchasing counterfeit, maybe even if that the seller doesn't know is counterfeit?

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Interesting, thank you. I'm surprised something that old isn't worth more. Is it because you run the risk of purchasing counterfeit, maybe even if that the seller doesn't know is counterfeit?

 

 

They are dug up in archaeological sites in Turkey in sizable quantities, thus the prices being low. I would not be concerned with counterfeits with these, but lately tooled and forged coins from the Black Sea are becoming a bit of a plague, even Cheronesos, which used to be a fairly common and affordable coin.

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ooh. cool.

 

well, what is one of the earliest coins produced in any quantity? even if they are forbiddingly rare for most collectors.

 

The earliest big trade coinages were the Aegina turtles and the Athenian owls. In drachm form you can get those fairly easily as well.

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Albeit with a bit more of the fundage necessary to acquire them, they are pricier than the Miletos or other Ionian coinages.

Yes, than the one you posted certainly. And one could argue the Ionian coins more interesting.

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  • 1 month later...

Well I have looked on Ebay and have not located any of the Ionian Miletos coins shown? I would very much like to add something that old to my collection, not for its value, but for its history.

 

Did a little more digging and did find them on Ebay. Now all I have to do is BRING one home!!! Hopefully this will be a new start to my ancient collection as my lack of knowledge has been enough to keep me away from the ancients.

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Well I have looked on Ebay and have not located any of the Ionian Miletos coins shown? I would very much like to add something that old to my collection, not for its value, but for its history.

 

 

Have a look at Vcoins.com now doubt there are dozens of them on there. Ebay tends to be where the castoffs that cannot sell in retail go. Not to say you cannot find a nice coin there occasionally, but Vcoins has better coins all in all.

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  • 1 month later...

I thought I'd answer the original poster's question. <g> The first known coin isn't any of the coins mentioned so far in this thread, not a Croesus stater, not a Miletos twelfth stater, not an Athenian Owl, not an Aegina Turtle. The Croesus stater is the closest, but coinage preceded Croesus in Lydia, which at the time was an independent, non-Greek kingdom in Asia Minor (present-day Turkey). Most numismatists regard Croesus' father, Alyattes, as having originated coinage, with the first coinage not being gold, or silver, but an alloy of gold and silver called electrum, and minted around 600 BC. Here's such a coin, a Lydian Lion, weighing about 4.7 grams and being about 54 percent gold:

 

Lydian_trite_15_o.jpgLydian_trite_15_r.jpg

 

There are differing views, with some numismatists believing coinage originated in China or India (particularly those from China and India), but Lydia has the strongest support in terms of archeology and ancient literature, though this support isn't absolutely conclusive. If you do a Google search for world's first coin you can find considerably more on this.

 

It is true that the Miletos silver twelfth stater (sometimes called a hemihekte or diobol) is the earliest "affordable" coin, the least expensive coin minted before the fifth century BC. It was minted by Greeks living near Lydia about a hundred years after the inception of coinage (500 BC, not 600 BC), with the most commonly mentioned dating being c. 525-494 BC, the ending date corresponding with the squashing of the Ionian Revolt of the Greek cities in Asia Minor (led by Miletos) by Persia.

 

The Athenian Owls and Aegian Turtles were more important coins, though more expensive today, the first widely used international coins, and the Athenian Owl is of further interest because of its association with Athens, the birthplace of democracy (at about the same time the first Owls were minted), because the basic Athena/owl type lasted for nearly a half millennium, and because the Owl was copied throughout the ancient world, with these Owl "imitatives" being the first coins in many locales.

 

If you're fairly new with this, the Miletos twelfth is a good choice, a 2,500-year-old coin less expensive today than many 150-year-old Liberty Seated dimes in about the same condition. Good hunting. <g>

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  • 2 weeks later...

In reply to the above thread, check this coin out. Described as the first recognisable coin.

 

http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/Worlds-First-recogni...8QQcmdZViewItem

 

 

Cheers,

 

Clive.

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The auction above is for the very same coin and variety I illustrated ... and is quite interesting. You don't see these Lydian Lion coins on eBay often, of any country, and when you do it's usually the later and more common variety, not this first variety, with the hatches of the lion's mane pointing upward. The coin appears absolutely authentic. It's not the greatest preserved specimen, and the sunburst above the lion's snout is not quite completely on the flan, but the price, about $905, is very reasonable. The countermark isn't too distracting and provides extra interest. I'm tempted, actually, but will probably pass.

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