Drachma Coins

Drachma Coins

The term “drachma” originated in ancient Greece around 1100 BC. The drachma was a standard coin unit comparable to a fistful of iron bars at that time. The most widely used coin in Greece prior to Alexander the Great’s reign was the four drachmae coin, or tetradrachmon. This coin featured a bust of Athena on the front and an owl on the back. For this reason the coins were commonly referred to as “owls” and the owl is still used on the modern Greek euro coin. Drachmae were in use during several periods of ancient and modern Greek history. After Alexander’s reign, the drachma became widely used and gave rise to several other currencies including the Arabic dirham and the Armenian dram.

Around 500 BC, each Greek city-state was minting its own local drachmas. Different weight standards applied at different mints, but the most commonly accepted standard was the Athenian drachma that weighed 4.3 grams. Most merchants accepted only coins from their own city along with the Athenian coin.

It is difficult to compare the value of the drachma with any modern currency due to the fact that ancient economies were so different from those in place today. As a rough estimate, in 500 BC a drachma was equivalent to about 40 USD in 2010. The average daily wage for an unskilled worker was half a drachma, or one drachma for a skilled worker. This was enough to provide daily subsistence for a small family. Medical professionals and sculptors could earn as many as six drachmas daily.

Variations of the drachma were produced in several states. The obol coin was equivalent to one-sixth of a drachma and the mina was equivalent to 100 drachmae. The most notable drachma coins were minted in Ptolemaic Egypt. These include the silver tetradrachm, decadrachm, and pentakaidecadrachm, and the gold pentadrachm and octadrachm.

After the modern Greek state was established in the early 1800s, the drachma was reintroduced to replace the phoenix that was being used at that time. The drachma was divided into 100 lepta, with coins of various denominations created out of copper, silver, and gold. The currency was reproduced in three modern versions throughout the 19th and 20th centuries. The drachma was finally replaced by the euro in 2001.

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Drachma Coins for Sale

1868/1873 - GREECE - KINGDOM / GEORGE I - SILVER PAIR OF KM#38 DRACHMA COINS F 1868/1873 - GREECE - KINGDOM / GEORGE I - SILVER PAIR OF KM#38 DRACHMA COINS F Paypal 0 Bid US $39.99 17m
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Discount Drachma Coins

For Percy Jackson Fans! For Percy Jackson Fans! "Mark of Athena" Most Famous Coin Reproduction of Athena & Her Owl. Athena is the Goddess of wisdom. (455-449 B.C.) (24 mm, 11 g) 24K Gold Plate
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Description

THIS IS A REPRODUCTION and is an authorized copy of a museum quality reproduction: Size: 24 mm, size of a US quarter and weighs 8g or 1/4 oz. It is molded of the finest lead free pewter and plated, in the US, in 24KGP or ...

1988 Greece 50 Drachmas Coin Homer Greek Coins Europe Coins 1988 Greece 50 Drachmas Coin Homer Greek Coins Europe Coins
Sale Price: $6.00
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Modern Greek (Hellenic) Coins Modern Greek (Hellenic) Coins
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