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Gaza Mint 335-332 BC, Solar Eclipse Symbol

Alexander the Great placed a siege on Gaza in 332 BC. The above coin was minted in Gaza between 335- 332 BC. The city of Gaza was under Persian control, however their coins were minted to imitate the Greek coins of Athens. It is possible the area was already economically dependent on Greece and the Eastern Mediterranean. It is also possible that the Greek letter Theta was replaced with a solar eclipse symbol. Varients of Theta on other imitative coins have been solid and close to lunar crescents. Notice the pellet within a circle appears to be a total or hybrid solar eclipse. Theta has also been associated with death. Theta plus a crescent may equal "death of the sun." The solar eclipse of 335 BC may have been used as propaganda to communicate a bad omen for Alexander. The defeat of Gaza opened Egypt to the Greeks. The city of Alexandria was founded in 331 BC.

Photo Shick Coins

The above coin is from Samaria in the same time period before Alexander invaded the Levant. The obverse shows a Persian King battling a lion and the reverse has a war galley. The circle with a pellet is most likely representative of the solar eclipse of 335 BC. The lion is Alexander the Great. Macedonian Kings would dress in lion skins as depicted on the coins of Alexander.

Photo Athena Numismatics

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