Set in an 18 karat gold pendant with ruby cabochon and hung on a braided gold chain, an ancient Greek coin from Larissa, capital of Thessaly. The obverse depicts the head of the nymph Larissa, wearing a necklace, facing, turned slightly to the left, wearing ampyx (band), pendant earring, and simple necklace in front. The reverse ΛΑΡΙΣ / ΑΙΩΝ and a grazing horse to the right. Herrmann pl. V, 5 var. Lorber, 2008 34 var.
Larissa, sometimes written Larisa on ancient coins and inscriptions, is near the site of the Homeric Argissa. It is also thought to be where the famous Greek physician Hippocrates and the famous philosopher Gorgias of Leontini died. The town adopted its own coinage in the late 5th century BC, choosing local types for its coins. The obverse depicted the nymph of the local spring, Larissa, for whom the town was named; probably the choice was inspired by the famous coins of Kimon depicting the Syracusan nymph Arethusa. The reverse depicted a horse in various poses. The horse was an appropriate symbol of Thessaly, a land of plains, which was well known for its horses.
Dimensions: Pendant diameter: 1 1/8 inches (2.86 cm), Necklace Length: 9 1/2 inches 24.13 cm), Weight: 20.6 g
Condition: Intact and in excellent condition overall. A fantastic statement piece!
Provenance: Ex. private collection of S.H., Washington state, acquired from California dealer in the 1990's.