Monday, May 3, 2010

A New Addition to the Egyptian Coin Collection

About 75 miles from Cairo last week there were 383 coins found dating back to the third century B.C. During that time King Ptolemy III, a relative of Cleopatra, was ruling Egypt. Ptolemy I was one of Alexander the Great’s bodyguards, and was appointed king after his death. As a result, Hellenistic culture was fused with Egyptian culture for almost three centuries, until Rome’s conquest of the region in 30 A.D. Cleopatra was the last Ptolemaic ruler.

These coins have the Greek-Egyptian god Amun-Zeus on one side, and an eagle with the words Ptolemy and King on the other. They would be a pretty nice addition to any coin collection, but they probably wouldn’t fit in your penny coin folders or nickel coin holders. They have a diameter of about two centimeters, are made of bronze, and are in excellent condition.

Also found were pieces of a whale skeleton, more than 40 million years old, and necklaces made from an ostrich shell. They will likely be put on display at the new Egyptian museum near the Pyramids at Giza. I wonder how they get their coin holders. Anyway, it’s a great addition to the Egyptian coin collection!


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