c. 500 BCE
AR trihemitetartemorion (trihemiobol), 5 mm, 0.26 gm
Obv: monkey squatting left
Rev: round shield or pellet within incuse square
Ref: "Uncertain Thraco-Macedonian Coins, Part II", Nomismatika Khronika (1998, Tzamalis), 67
This enigmatic series showing a monkey squatting either right or left with a round shield on the reverse, is the only Greek coinage of the classical period to depict such an animal. Monkeys are known to have been kept as house pets in antiquity, but its significance in this context is unknown.
The day this monkey arrived I showed it to a friend. Handing it to her I said, "it would be really bad if I dro... Noooooo!" Office on lockdown, move the furniture, crawl on hands and knees, took half an hour to find it. Below is the coin as it appeared when found. Can you spot it? Click image for description of the coin's location.
This is my smallest coin. The photo below shows it with my largest diameter coin, a 48 mm Ptolemy II. Click to enlarge.