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A Bird in the Hand

"Better one sparrow in thy hand than a thousand on the wing"

- Proverbs of Ahikar the Wise, 6th Century Assyria, #51

Image: Noodle snacks, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

My latest coin appears to be a rare variety by weight, 1.11g, and with a ring to the left of the goose. I'm not usually a fan of tiny coins, but the goose on this one and the sturdy nugget of a flan drew me in for a bid. I find the fine, even crystallization pattern attractive.

Macedon, Eion, c. 480-470 BC, AR Diobol or Triobol?, 1.11g, 9mm

Obv: Goose standing right, head left; small ring to upper left

Rev: Incuse square

Ref: AMNG III/2, –; SNG ANS 271 corr. (ring not noted)

Here's a closeup of the surface:

Eion captured from the Persians by Cimon, Athenian general, for the Delian League not long before this coin was minted. Eion later would be strategically important in the Pellopenisian war between Sparta and Athens.

Here the location of Eion in Macedonia, on a map of "The Athenian Empire at its height (about 450 BC)" from the collection of historical maps available online at the University of Texas at Austin.

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