The Greek cities immediately associated coinage with political independence and civic pride, so it became important for even the smallest cities to issue coinage. Among the first Greek states to adopt coinage was the island of Aegina, whose “turtles” became famous throughout the Aegean Sea as a coinage whose consistent metal content and weight for trade could be relied upon for centuries. Coinage soon spread among the Greek states and their colonies and by the 5th century B.C., there were hundreds of cities issuing coins throughout the Mediterranean region and beyond. Today we are aware of more than 800 different ancient Greek mint cities, many known only through their coins.
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