EXC 2060 A3-3 - Tradition and innovation of Graeco-Phoenician myths and cults in Roman Provincial Coinage

Funding Source
DFG - Cluster of Excellence
Project Number
EXC 2060/1
  • Description

    Phoenicia - located in today's Lebanon and northern Israel - is an ancient cultural landscape that, under Roman rule, was able to look back onlong traditions rooted in the Bronze Age. Here a uniquecultural and religious continuum is tangible. The aim of the project is to examine the religious traditions of the Phoenician cities against the background of Roman rule. Subject of the project are the numismatic sources. The project, the core of which is a dissertation, sets itself the goal of undertaking a systematic iconographic analysis of the Roman period cities of Phoenicia. These cities are in a very special way, since they not only have a rich coinage, but also because Phoenicia in the Roman Empire has a specific cultural milieu, which with the terms "Phoenician", "Greek" or "Roman" only inadequate is described. Phoenician cities such as Tyre and Sidon havechosen images fortheir coins depicting local deities and relating them to Greek and Roman myths. For example, the cult of the goddess Europa is placed in a mythological context, which aims to highlight the cultural and religious achievements of Phoenicia in the Mediterranean. To this end, Greek myths are "hijacked", and Greek traditions are reinterpreted innovatively, the Greek "Leitkultur" beaten by their own means, as shown on a coin by Tyre, the Phoenician Heros Kadmos, as he is handing over Scripture to the Greeks. This is a prime example of both transcultural intertwining and demonstrative unbundling. Based on the coinage of the Phoenician cities, the local cults and myths will be treated in their imperial embedding and self-definition as well as the reinterpretation of the Phoenician past in the Roman Empire.

  • Persons