Tetradrachm: Quadriga (obverse); Head of Arethousa (reverse)

c. 467–440 BCE
Diameter: 2.5 cm (1 in.)
Weight: 16.848 g (0.59 oz.)
Location: not on view
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Did You Know?

Three dolphins and a bit of a fourth are still visible swimming clockwise around Arethousa.


On the obverse of this highly symbolic coin is the head of Arethousa, a local goddess of Syracuse who fled from mainland Greece and arose on the site as a freshwater fountain. Four dolphins swim around her, suggesting Syracuse’s humble beginnings as a small island colony. On the reverse, a racing four-horse chariot recalls Syracuse’s past victories in Panhellenic games.
Tetradrachm: Quadriga (obverse); Head of Arethousa (reverse)

Tetradrachm: Quadriga (obverse); Head of Arethousa (reverse)

c. 467–440 BCE

Greek, minted at Syracuse (Sicily)

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