Mint: Ashdod, mid-5th century BCE
Diam: 15 mm; Weight: 13.67 gr; Axis: 12
Purchase, Abraham Bromberg Fund
Accession number: 96.14.14895
A Unique Coin from Ashdod
Obverse: Hybrid head - male surmounted by a forepart of a lion on the forehead (as headdress) facing left and monster-like figure to right
This Philistian silver drachm is one of the most intriguing coins minted in ancient Palestine, from both an artistic and an historical point of view.
The coin's obverse bears the hybrid head of a man facing left and a monsterlike animal facing right within a circular cable-pattern border. The man wears a circular earring, and the image of a lion's head and forelegs adorns his forehead. The animal image combines the face of a lion with the horns of a bull and the beard of a goat. A wing extends back above its humanlike ear, which is also adorned with a circular earring. The wing and beard simultaneously serve as the man's headdress, covering the top of his head and extending down the back of his neck. This skillful illusion merges the