Wednesday, October 22, 2003

Coin of the Week – Another Shekel

This Coin is a Shekel of Tyre, that was likely struck locally at Jerusalem in 4/3 B.C.E., and the image is from David Hendin's Amphora Coins site.

On the Obverse: Head of Heracles.
On the Reverse: Eagle standing, club in front, with the inscription in Greek "Of Tyre the Holy and Inviolable".

As noted at
Amphora Coins
The silver shekels and half shekels Tyre were the only coins accepted for payment by Jews of the annual half-shekel tribute to the Jerusalem Temple. Meshorer [note- a famous and very knowledgeable Israeli Numismatist] believes that this issue, with "KP" behind the eagle, was struck in Jerusalem, as opposed to the earlier style coins struck in Tyre

This is a Shekel of great historical importance. This coin is also of a great deal of historic interest to collectors as the year of its striking, 4/3 B.C.E., is thought of by scholars to be the year of Jesus’ birth. The money changers in the Temple were likely changing other coins and goods into these shekels for the annual tribute. A very desirable and collectible coin indeed, especially as it was likely struck at Jerusalem rather than in Tyre itself.

Tyrian shekels are quite available on the market today with prices that vary depending on a variety of factors.

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