Author Topic: The Origins of Thematics  (Read 19091 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline <k>

  • Moderator
  • Honorary Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 14 342
Re: The Origins of Thematics
« Reply #60 on: March 29, 2011, 04:55:43 PM »
A beautiful image, that looks surprisingly modern. Animals were commonly portrayed on the coins of the ancients, but over the centuries they gradually seemed to drop out, to be replaced by heraldry and state symbols. The collapse of the European empires as a result of the First World War gave a boost to modernity, and heraldry was more and more replaced by modern thematic designs.


  • Guest
Re: The Origins of Thematics
« Reply #61 on: March 29, 2011, 07:04:58 PM »
Here is yet another early coin with an animal, a gold aureus from Augustus 27-15 BC from the collection of the Geldmuseum. If I remember correctly, the statue of the bull was a war trophy.


Augustus 27BC-14AD

That "bull" is in fact a heifer, it is generally believed to represent a group of bronze statues cast in the fifth century B.C. After his victory at Actium, Augustus requisitioned from Athens four massive statues of cattle that had been created by the sculptor Myron. They were monumental prizes of great antiquity and Augustus used them to adorn an altar in his Temple of Apollo on the Palatine.

Here is a bull for comparision.
Ancient anecdote:  "In vain, bull, thou rushest up to this heifer, for it is lifeless.  The sculptor of cows, Myron, deceived thee"

« Last Edit: March 29, 2011, 08:07:46 PM by constanius »

Offline davidrj

  • Moderator
  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 238
Re: The Origins of Thematics
« Reply #62 on: March 21, 2014, 11:38:27 PM »
barbados 1788 Pineapple

Sierra Leone 1791 - lion (sadly marred by a solder splash)