Fred Michaelson writes:
I commend Chip Howell for pointing out the similarity between the Arches National Park Quarter and the R. Crumb cartoon. Being a long-time R. Crumb fan, I'm a bit embarrassed over not catching that myself. Now I'd like to know what Chip's eye comes up with when he looks at the Turkish "first coin" from last week's E-Sylum.
It took a little searching, but it's a Lydian brooch. The main element is a Hippocampus (horse/fish hybrid), and what trails below are tassles, I guess!
BTW, on the coin, the words ANADOLU MEDENiYETLERi is Turkish for "Anatolian Civilizations" & LiDYALILAR = "the Lydians." I guess the "M. Ö." is their version of "B.C.E." but I don't have my Turkish dictionary with me--it's at work!
Chip forwarded the following article with an image of the artifact, a 2,500-year-old golden brooch in the form of a winged seahorse, with tassles below.
The coin makes a LOT more sense now. Great story behind the brooch, too. Thanks!
For thousands of years it lay underground, part of the buried treasure of the legendarily wealthy King Croesus. But since being illegally excavated in the 1960s, it has been stolen, replaced by a fake, sold to pay off gambling debts and has allegedly brought down a curse on its plunderers.
Now the 2,500-year-old golden brooch is to be returned home to Turkey, where it will be given a special place in a new national museum.
The Turkish culture minister, Ertugrul Günay, has announced that German officials have agreed to return the missing artefact, a brooch in the form of a winged seahorse, possibly as early as this year.
The brooch is part of the Lydian Hoard, known in Turkey as the Karun Treasure, which was looted from iron-age burial mounds in western Turkey in 1965. The artefacts were sold on, eventually to be exhibited in the New York Metropolitan Museum of Art in the 1980s.
After a six-year legal battle that reportedly cost Turkey £25m, it was repatriated in 1993 and went on display in the Usak museum. But in 2006, after an anonymous tipoff, the brooch on show was discovered to be a fake, with the original missing again.
After an investigation the director of the museum, Kazim Akbiyikoglu, who had been instrumental in recovering the artefacts from the US, was arrested with 10 others. Akbiyikoglu admitted selling museum treasures to pay off gambling debts and was jailed for 13 years. He blamed his misfortune on an ancient curse said to afflict those who handle the treasure.
Popular rumour has it that all seven men involved in the illegal digs of the burial mounds died violent deaths or suffered great misfortune.
To read the complete article, see:
King Croesus's golden brooch to be returned to Turkey
To read the earlier E-Sylum articles, see:
NOTES FROM E-SYLUM READERS: JUNE 22, 2014 : More on the Arches Quarter Design
SOME RECENT COIN DESIGNS: JUNE 29, 2014
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