Coins from Lydia
Lydia lies in east-central Anatolia (Asia Minor) between Ionia and Phrygia.

The kingdom of Lydia gradually rose in power in the 7th Century B.C. and by the time of Alyattes and Croesus, it was controlling most of Anatolia after rebuking Medes (the pre-Achaemenid empire). The most important city was Sardis, today Sart, housing impressive ruins.

The Lydians were viewed as a merchant people and the kings as extremely wealthy. Croesus gained mythical status and today we still use the expression, "rich as Croesus."


(1) Achaemenid Empire 455-420? BC
Obverse: hero or king holding bow and dagger right
Reverse: incuse square; crescent countermark
Ref: Carradice type IV (early) A
(2) Achaemenid Empire 510/505-486 BC
Obverse: Great King right bearded and crowned kneeling-running, drawing bow, quiver at shoulder
Reverse: incuse square
Ref: Carradice type II: Carradice plate ...
(3) Alexander III 336-323 BC
Obverse: Head of Herakles right, wearing lion skin.
Reverse: Reverse: Zeus Aëtophoros seated left; griffin head in left field.
Ref: Price 2536; (Thompson) ADM I Serie...
(4) Alyattes 600-560 BC
Obverse: Head of roaring lion facing right, sun directly above, another orb (star?) in the ear, and a third in the mouth
Reverse: Two incuse punches
Ref: Sear 3398
(5) Antiochus I 280-261 BC
AE unit Sardis
Obverse: helmeted head of Athena facing
Reverse: Nike holding wreath and palm walking left; BAΣIΛEΩΣ / ANTIOXOY, (MΛ) within wreath
Ref: SC I 315; Newell, WSM 1369; SNG Cop...
(6) Antiochus II 261-246 BC
AE unit Sardis
Obverse: laureate head of Apollo right
Reverse: Tripod, anchor below BAΣIΛEΩΣ / ANTIOXOY Σ/E left , (HPYΔ) right
Ref: Houghton-Lorber 525(1)b; Newel WSM ...
(7) Antiochus III 222-187 BC
AE unit Sardis
Obverse: Laureate head of Apollo right
Reverse: Elephant left; anchor up side down to the left BAΣIΛEΩΣ // ANTIOXOY
Ref: Houghton-Lorber I 979, cf. SNG Spae...
(8) Attaleia c. 100-268 AD
Obverse: bust of Athena right wearing crested Corinthian helmet and aegis, holding spear
Reverse: Tyche standing left, holding rudder and cornucopia; ATTAΛE_ATΩN
Ref: SNG von Aulock 2911; Mionnet IV, 61...
(9) Autophradates c. 380-355 BC
AE unit Sardis?
Obverse: head of Autophradates right, wearing Persian tiara
Reverse: monoskelis
Ref: Winzer 11.7.
(10) Croesus 561-546 BC
Obverse: Confronted foreparts of a lion and a bull
Reverse: Two incuse square punches
Ref: SNG von Aulock 2877
(11) Germanicus | Drusus II c. 14-17 AD
AE unit Sardis
Obverse: Head of Germanicus right ΓEPMANIKOΣ // KAIΣAPEΩN
Reverse: Head of Drusus right ΔPOYΣOΣ // ΣAPΔIANΩN
Ref: RPC I 2992
(12) Gordus-Julia c. 198-235 AD
Obverse: bust of Herakles right wearing lion's skin knotted around neck
Reverse: lion walking right; ΓOPΔHNΩN / IOVΛI
Ref: BMC 91, 15; SNG München 183
(13) Nacrasa 100-200 AD
AE unit Nacrasa
Obverse: draped youthful bust of Roman Senate right; IEPA CVNKΛHTOC
Reverse: turreted draped bust of Tyche right; NAKPA_CITΩN
Ref: BMC Lydia p. 166, 9; SNG Cop 290; S...
(14) Philadelpheia | Hermippos 200-1 BC
Obverse: Macedonian shield (4 symetry)
Reverse: Winged thunderbolt, all within laurel wreath; EPMIΠ / ΠΩΣ / ΦΙΛΑΔΕΛ // ΦΕΩΝ
Ref: SNG Copenhagen 342; BMC 187.1-4var ...
(15) Saitta c. 100-200 AD
AE unit Saitta
Obverse: draped bust of Serapis right wearing modius
Reverse: Tyche standing left, holding rudder and cornucopia; CAITT_HNΩN
Ref: Lindgren III, 506; BMC 33. 3.54; SN...
(16) Sardis c. 400-300 BC
AE unit Sardis
Obverse: head of Dionysos left wearing ivy-wreath
Reverse: kantharos; 8_3 (F_S in lydian alphabet)*
Ref: Vögtli, Pergamon 524; CNG E-248, lo...
(17) Sardis c. 200-1 BC
AE unit Sardis
Obverse: laureate and draped bust of young Heracles right
Reverse: Apollo standing left, holding branch and bird - all within wreath; ΣAPΔIANΩN / ΛYΓ / AΣ __ MHNO / PONHΣ
Ref: SNGCop 492v
(18) Sardis ~200-133 BC
AE unit Sardis
Obverse: CAPΔIC, turreted and veiled head of Tyche right
Reverse: CAΡΔIANΩN B NEΩKOΡΩN, cult statue of Kore facing, draped and wearing kalathos, between ear of grain and poppy
Ref: SNG von Aulock 3141; SNG München 50...
(19) Thyateira c. 100-200 AD
AE unit Thyateira
Obverse: draped bust of Serapis right wearing kalathos
Reverse: Isis standing left holding sistrum and scepter; ΘVAT_EI_ΡHNΩN
Ref: BMC, Lydia, p. 301.53; SNG Aulock, ...
(20) Tralleis 200-1 BC
AE unit Tralleis
Obverse: laureate head of Zeus right
Reverse: humped bull left; TPAΛΛI / ANΩN, (ΠΩΛ)
Ref: BMC 63; SNG TÜBINGEN 3866; SNG KOP ...
(21) Tralleis 133-126 BC
Obverse: cista mystica with snake, all in ivy wreath
Reverse: coiled snakes, flanking ornamented bow-case; Dionysos on the right, holding thyrsos and grapes; TPAΛ / ΠTOΛ
Ref: SNG Cop 662-663var (Datum), BMC 332...