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Sicily, Messana, Tetradrachm


Sicily, Messana, Tetradrachm (obverse) Sicily, Messana, Tetradrachm (reverse)

Deep in their hearts emigrants very often keep a part of their old homelands with them. What other reason is there for town names in the United States like New Zurich or New Glarus?

This phenomenon is not new, but can be found in ancient times as well. One such example is the city of Messina in Sicily. It was originally named Zankle, which meant 'scythe' in Greek and referred to the natural sickle-shaped harbor. In the early 5th century BC, however, the tyrant Anaxilas renamed Zankle into Messene, thus honoring his hometown in the Greek region of Messene. The name is in use up to this day as Messina.