Eros appears on Roman provincial coins as an element of many different reverse types—as a single figure or with other Erotes, with his “girlfriend” Psyche, accompanying Aphrodite or other deities, with a favoured animal like a dolphin or lion, or as part of a more complex tableau like the story of Hero and Leander or the so-called Rape of Persephone. In these notes we describe and discuss the different types. For a systematic arrangement of the material, see the Blog Archive.
Friday, March 18, 2011
Type 48: Eros with Pelops and Hippodameia in a Quadriga
Pelops, son of Tantalus, according to legend gave his name to the Peloponnese (the “island of Pelops”). He came to Elis and won the hand of Hippodameia, the daughter of the king, in a chariot race. Pelops originated from Lydia, and appears on several coins of Sardes. Here, he is carrying off his newly-won bride, accompanied by Eros holding the torches of passion.
in Lydia, coins of Gordian III, with reverse type of Pelops and Hippodameia in a fast quadriga r.; Eros, holding two torches, flies r. above the reins.