From Antiquity to the Middle Ages
Since June 1, 2018, it has been difficult to overestimate the value of ancient coins, suffice it to say that these are the first coins in the history of mankind.
Ancient Greece was not a centralized state. Numerous poleis were located from the shores of the Black Sea to Spain. However they often fought among themselves, the key to their existence and bonds was trade. The universal trade instrument is the coins made of precious metals.
The exhibition presents the coins of Ancient Greece, Ancient Rome and the Byzantine Empire, telling about gods and rulers, everyday life, the culture of the past, and even the nature.
So, for example, on the earliest coin, which is presented at the exhibition - a hecta from Phocaea (mid. 5th century BC) - you can see a creature that was the symbol of the city - a monk seal, which used to inhabit the area from the coast of Crimea to Madeira, and now almost exterminated by man.
Roman coins initially continued to follow the Greek tradition depicting gods and mythological images, but with the development of state, they became a means of promoting the official policy, and portraits began to appear on them, and since the time of Julius Caesar the coin has been minted with the portrait of the ruler. Thanks to the skill of ancient medalists, we know how Roman emperors looked like.
During the Byzantine Empire, these images acquire portrait features that have
changed over time. For example, at the beginning of his reign, Constant II was
depicted on coins as a beardless young man, and towards the end of his reign, a
lush beard emphasized his maturity.
The tour introduces visitors to the myths and legends of Ancient Greece and Ancient Rome. Athena and Mars, Jupiter and Juno, Janus and Hercules are only a small part of the gods and heroes who will participate in the story. Not only will you see how they were depicted on coins, remember the myths, answer the questions why Mars was a much more important god for the Romans than Ares for the Greeks, but also you will find out why the coins became to be called coins.