Coin Tours 〉 Across the Times 〉 Money in Times of War 〉 Sicily, Syracuse, Dionysius I (405-367 BC), 20 Litrae, 405-380 BC
Sicily, Syracuse, Dionysius I (405-367 BC), 20 Litrae, 405-380 BC
|Mint Authority:||City of Syracuse|
|Year of Issue:||-405|
The last decades of the 5th century BC were a troublesome time for Sicily. The Phoenicians from the North African city of Carthage destroyed several of the flourishing Greek cities during that time. In the course of this crisis, the war lord Dionysius I came to power in Syracuse.
To pay his armed forces and to cover other war-related expenses, Dionysius began to issue the first Sicilian gold coins. They bore on the obverse the head of the hero Heracles, the strongest man of Greek mythology. The reverse showed a little head of Arethusa, the nymph of Syracuse's most important sweet water spring.