Gods and goddesses on coins of Cilicia Trachea


The following table shows the occurrence of deities on coins of Cilicia Trachea minted in the Classical period. The table does not distinguish whether the deities are depicted on the obverse or reverse of the coins. Denominations with uncertain assignment to a given mint are marked with a question mark. The last row includes coins without an explicit depiction of a deity. These coins depict mythical creatures such as Pegasus, Gorgon and Sphinx, or various secular motifs.

Anemourion Aphrodisias Holmoi Kelenderis Nagidos
(sometimes with Eros)
staters (?),
obols (?)
staters, third staters, obols, hemiobols, tetartemorions, bronze coins
Apollo staters staters, obols, hemiobols, bronze coins
(sometimes bearing Nike)
staters (?) staters, obols, hemiobols, bronze coins obols, hemiobols
Baal obols, bronze coins
Dionysos staters, third staters, obols, hemiobols, bronze coins
Herakles staters
Hermes obols (?)
Pan obols, bronze coins
Tyche obols
uncertain male deity hemiobols (?) obols
no explicit deity obols (?),
hemiobols (?),
hemitetarte-morions (?)
staters, third staters, obols staters, third staters, obols, hemiobols, bronze coins obols

The coins of Anemourion and Aphrodisias do not tell much about their worshipped deities. Only two staters from Anemourion are known, both struck from the same dies. As for Aphrodisias, no coin can be attributed to this mint with certainty

The first issues of Holmoi from the 5th century BC do not depict any deity or divine attribute. Only the obols show Pegasus. However, coins from the 4th century BC depict Apollo, Athena and a bearded god, probably Zeus, Poseidon or Kronos.

Kelenderis is the only city that has never minted staters with any deity. Only on some obols and hemiobols does the goddess Athena appear. In addition, we find the gorgoneion1 on Kelenderis bronze coins and on some obols and hemiobols. Other mythological creatures are represented by Pegasus. Note that according to Aelius Herodianus, who mentions the Samian origin of Kelenderis, the sacred precinct of Hera was located near the city.2 This makes sense given the significant cult of Hera on Samos. However, neither this goddess nor any of her attributes are depicted on the coins. The cult of Athena appears to have been more prominent in Kelenderis at the time of the minting of these coins (5th to 4th century BC).

The widest representation of various deities can be found on Nagidos coins. On these coins we find Aphrodite, Baal, Dionysos, Pan and Tyche. The main deities were Aphrodite and Dionysos, who appear on most stater issues and can also be found on lower denominations. On some staters, Aphrodite is accompanied by Eros.


1The gorgoneion was a protection symbol showing the Gorgon’s head. It was one of the oldest attributes of Athena and it was also linked with Zeus.

2Aelius Herodianus, Herodiani Technici Reliquiae, Vol. 2, 925.6. For the foundation of Kelenderis by the Samian colonists, see Cilicia Trachea in the Classical Period / Mints in the Classical Period / Kelenderis.


2 April 2022 – 14 June 2023