Sarmatia, Olbia, Dolphin Coin


Sarmatia, Olbia, Dolphin Coin (obverse) Sarmatia, Olbia, Dolphin Coin (reverse)

This small dolphin is an interesting transition between standardized coin and bronze ingot. It weighs 4.23 grams, which corresponded to the coin standard of the Athenian drachm. The inscription on the reverse, APIXO, gives the name of the issuing authority; it is this declaration that turns the ingot into a coin.

The dolphin originated from Olbia, an ancient city on the mouth of the River Bug and on the coast of the Black Sea. Dolphins were very frequent in these waters. They liked to accompany seagoing vessels over long distances, which is why they became symbols of maritime transportation and trade. The dolphin coins of Sarmatia expressed this in a very picturesque manner.


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