Description:This Alexander the Great coin was minted during his lifetime in the city of Salamis, located on the eastern coastline of the island of Cyprus in the eastern Mediterranean Sea. Tutored by Aristotle in his youth, Alexander succeeded his murdered father King Philip II in 336 BC, inheriting a strong Greek kingdom and an experienced army. He took full advantage and by 333 BC, Alexander had marched his army through Asia Minor and defeated the Persians in the major battles of Granicus and Issus. The Cypriot kings saw this as their opportunity to rise up against their Persian overlords and in 333 BC, Cyprus became part of Alexanderís Empire.
By the time of his death in 323 BC, Alexander had overthrown the Persian King Darius III and conquered the entirety of his empire. Alexander's own empire stretched from the Adriatic Sea to Egypt and as far east as the Indus River in India. His legacy lived on long after him, ushering in centuries of Greek settlement and Hellenistic culture over distant areas.
The obverse of this coin shows the Greek hero Hercules wearing a lionís skin of armor. This was important to Alexander's hereditary line, as he claimed to be descended from the mythological hero. The reverse shows Zeus, the king of the Greek gods, seated on a throne and holding an eagle. Zeus was the most powerful of all the Greek gods and his appearance on Alexander's coinage symbolized Alexander's status as leader of all the Greeks.