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Southern Italy, Calabria, Taras, Tetras

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Southern Italy, Calabria, Taras, Tetras (obverse) Southern Italy, Calabria, Taras, Tetras (reverse)

Many Greek coins of small denominations have been found, proving that money had its place in everyday life in antiquity. The most common of these small coins were obols. In Sicily and southern Italy, the litra was very common as well; it was slightly heavier than an obol.

To distinguish the two denominations was not easy. Many cities therefore minted the two coin types with different motifs. Another possibility was to indicate the value on the coin itself as did the city of Taras (today's Taranto) on this tiny littly coin. It bears three pellets on every side (although on the obverse one of the pellets is cut off). They indicate that the coin was worth 3 onkiai; this denomination is called a tetras.

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