Greece, Attica - Owl, AR tetradrachm (5th c. BC) Emporium Numismatics

Product no.: 244716_2

Currently unavailable

Price incl. VAT, plus shipping costs

Greece, Attica - Owl, AR tetradrachm (5th c. BC).

Av. head of Athena.
R. Owl with olive branch and crescent moon in quadratum incusum.

Above average condition !!!

You will receive: a noble and high-quality case as well as a certificate of authenticity!




The Nominal

The tetradrachm or tetradrachmon (Ancient Greek τετράδραχμον; also tetrachmon) is a coin of four drachms and is considered the most important large silver coin of the city-states of ancient Greece. Tetradrachms were minted from the end of the 6th century BC until the Roman imperial period; they were even in use in isolated cases until the 3rd century AD. In Athens they were introduced around 530/520 BC. The weight of the tetradrachms was typically between 14 and a good 17 g. A craftsman of the 5th to 4th century BC had to work for about four days to produce one tetradrachm.



Athena (honorary title: Pallas Athena) is a goddess of Greek mythology. She is the goddess of wisdom, strategy and battle, of art, crafts and manual labour, and of course the patron goddess and namesake of the Greek city of Athens.


The owl 

Descriptions of the owl can already be found in Aristotle, the first scientific treatise in Pliny. In Greece, the owl - more precisely, the little owl (Athene noctua) was well respected and considered a bird of wisdom, chosen by the goddess Athena, the protector of Athens and goddess of wisdom. On Greek coins, the head of Athena was depicted on the obverse. As the heraldic bird, the little owl with olive branch and moon adorned the reverse of the tetradrachms. The coins were therefore also called "owls" for short. Since Athens was very rich and a large number of these "owls" were present there, even today "carrying owls to Athens" means doing something nonsensical or superfluous. The comedy poet Aristophanes coined this saying around 400 BC, which is still known today. The owl was also a protector and accompanied armies to war. In Greece, the owl also symbolised science and prudence.

The olive branch

According to legend, Heracles brought the wild olive tree to Olympia, where the winners of the games were honoured with its branches. In general, the olive branch, which also adorns Zeus and Athena, is a symbol of victory and peace as well as long-lasting strength and power.


Additional product information

Mint Athens
Grading EF
Additional specifications Diameter ca. 20,00 mm
Material Silver
Full weight

ca. 17,00g

Literature Sear 2526


Product Note Status Price
Attica, Owl, AR Tetradrachm - Top conservation ! Attica, Owl, AR Tetradrachm - Top conservation !
895.00 € *
Prices incl. VAT, plus shipping costs
Display accessory details

Browse these categories as well: Online-Shop, Ancient Coins, Greece