Author Topic: Barbarian Thasos Type Coinage - Chronology and Classification  (Read 479 times)

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Offline Figleaf

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Re: Barbarian Thasos Type Coinage - Chronology and Classification
« Reply #1 on: December 11, 2016, 11:44:04 PM »
And an indication that the Celts are finding their rightful place in Bulgarian history?

Celtic coinage is a sort of "last frontier" in European numismatics. From 1600 to date, it is almost impossible to discover a new type. Classical Greek and Roman coinage have been extensively studied. Information on the period between the decline of the Roman empire and 1600 is fragmented over a large number of books and new variants can be found, but the major typology is established. That leaves non-Roman coins contemporary with Roman coins. Since many Celtic coins are imitations of Roman types, they are hard to classify without extensive knowledge of finds.

I think you are well placed to contribute here. You contributed extensively to the field and should be a credible researcher for any museum having East Celtic coins. Much can be done online now. A definitive typology of East Celtic coins may not be in reach yet, but a trial list with illustrations of sequenced coin types such as you have shown a number of times would be a great and much needed basis to build on.

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

Offline cavaros

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Re: Barbarian Thasos Type Coinage - Chronology and Classification
« Reply #2 on: December 12, 2016, 05:51:51 PM »
Thank you, and thank you for your support and advice over the years. Eastern Celtic coins is a very large area, but we are now approaching the point where we can consider a study of Celtic coinage and coin hoards from Bulgaria.

Offline Figleaf

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Re: Barbarian Thasos Type Coinage - Chronology and Classification
« Reply #3 on: December 12, 2016, 09:12:55 PM »
 :thumbsup: That's great news. You should be part of such a project. Keep us informed, please. We're all for new studies and publications.

I'd just like to argue that present-day borders have no relevance to classical coins. Tribal and clan connections do. However, I understand that it is practical to limit a study. There must be a middle road somewhere ...

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

Offline cavaros

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Re: Barbarian Thasos Type Coinage - Chronology and Classification
« Reply #4 on: December 13, 2016, 02:52:13 AM »
Absolutely agree, Peter.

We're talking about Ancient Thrace really. Just, from a practical perspective, we have had co-operation from some of the young numismatists and archaeologists in Bulgaria, which has enabled us to get this far despite the political climate that still dominates here. Thus, for example, although access to Celtic coin finds is still denied to academics, apparently because the vast majority of them have "disappeared" from the museums in which they are supposed to be stored - https://www.academia.edu/4136789/Celtic_Coinage_from_Bulgaria_-_The_Material_Evidence
we have been able to access the documentation which shows the amount, location, type and discovery dates of the hoards.

Offline Figleaf

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Re: Barbarian Thasos Type Coinage - Chronology and Classification
« Reply #5 on: December 13, 2016, 10:56:24 AM »
I was generally aware of the situation, thanks to earlier articles from you, but I was still shocked by the numbers in the last paragraph.

There is no real remedy against coins that have already been stolen. Some may be recovered by chance every time the political winds change, but most will remain lost. The point is now to stop the thefts. This can only be done by the Bulgarian authorities and they have to be motivated to do so.

What should have been a natural starting point to build such motivation, UNESCO, is a pretty useless organisation. My advice would be to use the EU instead. That will be difficult, as the EU has no cultural mandate, but it can be done. Bulgaria is a recipient of regional and structural EU aid. I would expect it to be largely for infrastructural projects (roads, bridges etc.), but there are bound to be tourism projects. Make sure of that on the vast EU web site. These can be tied in to museums and from there you can go to theft prevention, safety and stock taking/registry, perhaps even with EU subsidies. Since there is money and politics involved, the old guard cannot resist a deal where they need to open up collections for the politicians to get subsidies from Brussels.

That shifts the motivation question to Brussels, where you can achieve stuff the usual way. By lobbying. You and Mr. Paunov, being outside Bulgaria, are well placed to lead. Get at least the top of the university interested in your story. Because of Brexit and increasing British irrelevancy in Brussels, you will want to get the Irish involved next. Some kind of Celtic event (there is one in Normandy annually, centred on music) may give you an opening to the Irish powers that be. An interested parliamentarian or culture 'crat could open the door to the taoiseach. Otherwise, one of my old contacts may get you an appointment at least within his office (but get Cardiff university squarely behind you first). They, in turn, may get the French along, playing the Celtic card; the French are quite sensitive to minority interests. Together, they can move the Brussels 'crats to actually do something.

I am sure there are other paths. My point is simply that you have done what you could do in the scientific world. Now, a step into the world of politics is needed. The way sketched above is not the only one. Just keep an open mind, use every opportunity you may get, especially when you can play on minority interests. You should keep your eye on the goal, make progress, not noise and play it calm and with dignity. Have faith in your story and never lose hope. The final comfort is that the old guard dies before you do.

Peter
« Last Edit: December 14, 2016, 01:16:58 AM by Figleaf »
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

Offline cavaros

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Re: Barbarian Thasos Type Coinage - Chronology and Classification
« Reply #6 on: December 13, 2016, 04:55:31 PM »
Thank you again. Unfortunately, with politicians its a bit like taking donkeys to the opera  ??? In the past it would simply have been, as you say, a case of "waiting for the old guard to die". However, thanks to the Net it is now possible to reach a mass audience, and the Status Quo can be shaken simply by presenting the facts which contradict the traditional, and often manipulated, version of history. Numismatics has a particularly important part to play in this process.