Numismatic Museum of Athens, Greece
DISCOVER THE ANCIENT HISTORY OF ATHLETICS
1st - 45th
776 BC – 600 BC
Originally Olympia belonged to Triphylia, a part of Arcadia that was controlled by Pisa. But most of the times Elis was the organizer of Olympics.
Birth of Ancient Olympic Games. Festival held in honor of Zeus.
Levelling land and digging new wells.
Skiloudians, allies of the Pistans, built the Temple of Hera.
First Elis Olympic Coins
The Temple of Zeus at Olympia was constructed an ancient Greek temple in Olympia, Greece, dedicated to the god Zeus. Gain an appreciation of the structure that housed the colossal Statue of Zeus, one of the ancient Seven Wonders of the World that was made of , ivory, gold and precious stones.
First Elis Olympic Coins found.
At the Olympics these years
Famous athletes From Rhodes
Diagorasof Rhodes (boxing 79th Olympiad, 464 BC) and his sons Akusilaosand Damagetos(boxing and pankration)
His three sons were Olympic champions. The oldest son, Damagetos, won the pankration in 452 and 448 BC. Akousílaos, the second son, won the boxing in 448 BC. The two celebrated their victory by carrying their father around the stadionon their shoulders, cheered loudly by the spectators. This was considered the peak of happiness that a human being could experience, achieving great glory and yet having this glory matched or even surpassed by one’s own children.
Elis, Olympia 78th-80th Olympiad.
Very Rare (R2) / VF
87th – 90th Olympiad.
432 – 420 BC.
Very Rare (R2) / VF
The most talented master engravers
were commissioned to engrave Elis Olympic Coins, showing off the artistry of Greece and resulting in the beautiful coins being treated as prestigious objects.
While their primary use was for normal commerce during the games (paying for food, lodging, and entry to see the spectacles), they became popular souvenirs for visitors who wanted to bring a part of the games home with them.
These coins celebrated the god Zeus and his wife Hera, who presided over Olympia and the games themselves. The Olympic coinage is represented by a small range of imagery, focusing heavily on Zeus and his eagle, sometimes featuring snakes, thunderbolts, Ionic column capitals, or Nike, representing victory at the games.
Addition to the collection
KINGS OF MACEDON. Philip II,
Most likely Plato visited the Olympics at this year.
Plato was a philosopher in Classical Greece and two times Isthmian Games winner but never made it to the Olympics as an athlete.
Tetradrachm 14.50 g
Pella, c. 336/5-329/8 / Le Rider 344 (D344/R276).
At the Olympics
When King Philip II came games, people booed at it was believed he was preparing to invade Greece.
356 BC, Philip’s race horse won in the Olympic Games; for this victory, his wife, who was known then as Myrtale, received the name Olympias.
In the summer of the same year, Olympias gave birth to her first child, Alexander the Great. In ancient Greece people believed that the birth of a great man was accompanied by portents.
Philip won the Olympics 356, 352 and 348.