Octodrachm: Head of Arsinoe II (obverse); Double Cornucopia (reverse)

205–145 BCE
Location: not on view
You can copy, modify, and distribute this work, all without asking permission. Learn more about CMA's Open Access Initiative.

Download, Print and Share

Did You Know?

The small horn around Arsinoe’s ear, referencing the Egyptian god Amon-Re, marks her divine status.


On this long-lived series of coinage, Arsinoe II, a divinized Hellenistic queen, wears the crown and veil associated with Hera; a scepter may be just visible beside her neck. The daughter of Ptolemy I, founder of the Hellenistic Greek dynasty that ruled Egypt for nearly three centuries, Arsinoe married Lysimachos, king of Thrace, at the age of fifteen. After his death, she married first her half-brother and then her full brother, Ptolemy II, beginning a long-lasting Ptolemaic dynastic tradition of sibling marriage. Twin cornucopias on the reverse of this coin likely refer to the divine ruling couple, presaged in Egypt by Isis and Osiris, and in Greece by Zeus and Hera.
Octodrachm: Head of Arsinoe II (obverse); Double Cornucopia (reverse)

Octodrachm: Head of Arsinoe II (obverse); Double Cornucopia (reverse)

205–145 BCE

Greek, Ptolemaic, minted at Alexandreia (Egypt), reign of Ptolemy V Epiphanes or Ptolemy VI Philometor

Visually Similar Artworks

Contact us

The information about this object, including provenance, may not be currently accurate. If you notice a mistake or have additional information about this object, please email collectionsdata@clevelandart.org.

To request more information about this object, study images, or bibliography, contact the Ingalls Library Reference Desk.

All images and data available through Open Access can be downloaded for free. For images not available through Open Access, a detail image, or any image with a color bar, request a digital file from Image Services.