Finger-Rings with Famous Bosporan Gold Stater in Great Ryzhanovka Kurgan


As quoted in the previous part, the woman buried in Great Ryzhanovka Kurgan “wore eight rings, two seal rings, two sets with gold staters of Panticapaeum, one set with an unworked piece of limestone, and three quite plain”. The bearded man with a wreath of ivy leaves on the obverse of the coin is most likely a satyr (god Pan). The reverse shows a lion-headed horned griffin with a spear or an arrow in his mouth, standing on a sheaf of wheat, and the letters PAN. The representation of Pan (a Satyr) on the finger-rings together with the appliqués in the form of dancing maenads adorning the ceremonial headdress led the scholars to believe that they were all a clear reference to Dionysian symbolism (see Dionysian Mysteries). And it means that the woman buried in Great Ryzhanovka Kurgan was most likely a priestess of an ecstatic agricultural cult

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It is worth mentioning that a very similar burial of a woman with the maenads was found in the area of present-day Kuban to the east of the Azov Sea. It is described at length in the “Cradle of Civilizations” book.

As for the stater, a similar one was sold for a record amount of money just a week ago. NEXT >

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