Astronomical Symbols on Ancient and Medieval Coins


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About the Book

The coins of ancient and medieval Europe provide unique insights into the economic and political history of their period. In a time when few members of the population could read or write, the symbols depicted on coins offered a medium for communication, propaganda, and historical archiving. This work hypothesizes that astronomical symbols on ancient and medieval coins were often used as a way to record actual celestial events. The author provides more than 550 figures and line drawings of coins, maps, and astronomical events to illustrate this hypothesis. In addition, several appendices evaluate the historical accuracy of ancient and medieval coinage and offer additional examples not included in the main text.

About the Author(s)

Marshall Faintich has a Ph.D. in astronomy, is a past national director of the American Cartographic Association, and has been a numismatist for more than 50 years. He lives in central Virginia.

Bibliographic Details

Marshall Faintich
Format: softcover (7 x 10)
Pages: 232
Bibliographic Info: 566 illustrations, maps, appendices, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2012 [2008]
pISBN: 978-0-7864-6915-4
eISBN: 978-0-7864-9182-7
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments      vi

Preface      1

Introduction      3

1. The Sun and the Moon      9

2. The Stars and the Planets      17

3. Eclipses      32

4. Comets      59

5. Complex and Unusual Astronomical Designs      82

6. Visions Explained      98

7. Norman England      122

8. Re-attribution of Anglo-Gallic Deniers      153

9. The Solar Crusade      170

10. Beginnings      178

Appendix A. Accuracy of Analyses      181

Appendix B. Additional Examples      189

Appendix C. Sources of Figures      214

Bibliography      217

Index      221

Book Reviews & Awards

“Marshall Faintich scores gold…remarkable…analyses are highly detailed…This is a book not to be read in a hurry. It is one to be savoured and digested at leisure”—Auckland Astronomical Society Journal.