Elis, Olympia 97th Olympiad.

392 BC.


Kyniska of Sparta

first woman Olympic winner

Kyniska, daughter of King Archidamos of Sparta, was the first woman to be listed as an Olympic victor in Antiquity. Her chariot won in the four-horse chariot race in the 96th and 97th Olympiads, (396 B.C. and 392 B.C. respectively). In the Olympic Games, it was forbidden for women to be present and Kyniska broke with tradition, since, in the equestrian events, the victory wreath, or kotinos, was won by the owner, not the rider, of the horse.

At the Olympics these years

While most women in the ancient Greek world were kept in seclusion and forbidden to learn any kind of skills in sports, riding or hunting, Spartan women by contrast were brought up from girlhood to excel at these things so as to produce strong children, by going through early training similar to that of their brothers.

The ancient Olympic Games were almost entirely male-only and women were forbidden even to set foot in the main stadium at Olympia, where running events and combat sports were held.

Elis, Olympia 97th Olympiad.

392 BC.
Hemidrachm, 11.14g.
BCD 91
Rare (R1) VF

Head of Hera right, wearing stephane decorated with palmettes; faint L in right field / F A, thunderbolt within olive wreath. Seltman, Temple 277a (dies EL/hf ­ this coin); BCD 91 (same obverse die)
VF, toned, well centered.

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Address: Omonoia 12, Athina 106 71