Description:This denarius coin was minted in Rome in 86 BC and shows the laureate head of Apollo above a thunderbolt. In ancient mythology, Apollo was seen as the most beautiful god. He was the patron god of archers, the god of light, truth and prophecy, music, poetry and the arts. Medicine and healing were also associated with Apollo, as he was seen as a god who had the ability to cure. As the patron deity of Delphi, Apollo was the prophetic god of the Delphic Oracle.
The Roman worship of Apollo was adopted from the Greeks, and during a period of pestilence in the 430s BC, Apollo's first temple in Rome was built at the Flaminian fields. Over the centuries, Apollo became one of the chief gods of Rome. Caesar Augustus considered himself to be under the special protection of Apollo and was even said to be his son. After the Battle of Actium in 31 BC, Augustus erected a new temple to Apollo, dedicated a portion of the spoils to him and instituted annual games in his honor.
In ancient Roman religion, Jupiter was the king of the gods and the god of sky and thunder. He was the equivalent of Zeus to the Greeks. Beginning in 509 BC, the most important temple in Rome was that of Jupiter on the Capitoline Hill. On the roof was a triumphal chariot drawn by four horses with Jupiter himself as the charioteer and hurling a thunderbolt, just as he is depicted on the reverse of this coin.