Pautalia AE24.Hercules wrestling the Namean Lion

Ancient Coins - Pautalia AE24.Hercules wrestling the Namean Lion
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Pautalia AE24 Moushmov 4204 of Septimius Severus


Septimus Severus AE24 of Pautalia, Thrace. AV K CEP CEVHPOC, laureate draped & cuirassed bust right / OVLPIAC PAVTALIAC, Hercules wrestling the Namean Lion right. VF.

The Nemean Lion

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Initially, Hercules was required to complete ten
labors, not twelve. King Eurystheus decided
Hercules' first task would be to bring him the skin of
an invulnerable lion which terrorized the hills around

Setting out on such a seemingly impossible labor,
Hercules came to a town called Cleonae, where he
stayed at the house of a poor workman-for-hire,
Molorchus. When his host offered to sacrifice an
animal to pray for a safe lion hunt, Hercules asked
him to wait 30 days. If the hero returned with the
lion's skin, they would sacrifice to Zeus, king of the
gods. If Hercules died trying to kill the lion,
Molorchus agreed to sacrifice instead to Hercules, as
a hero.

When Hercules got to Nemea and began tracking the
terrible lion, he soon discovered his arrows were
useless against the beast. Hercules picked up his club
and went after the lion. Following it to a cave which
had two entrances, Hercules blocked one of the
doorways, then approached the fierce lion through the
other. Grasping the lion in his mighty arms, and
ignoring its powerful claws, he held it tightly until
he'd choked it to death.

Hercules returned to Cleonae, carrying the dead lion,
and found Molorchus on the 30th day after he'd left for
the hunt. Instead of sacrificing to Hercules as a dead
man, Molorchus and Hercules were able to sacrifice
together, to Zeus.

When Hercules made it back to Mycenae, Eurystheus
was amazed that the hero had managed such an
impossible task. The king became afraid of Hercules,
and forbade him from entering through the gates of the
city. Furthermore, Eurystheus had a large bronze jar
made and buried partway in the earth, where he could
hide from Hercules if need be. After that, Eurystheus
sent his commands to Hercules through a herald,
refusing to see the powerful hero face to face.

Many times we can identify Hercules in ancient Greek
vase paintings or sculptures simply because he is
depicted wearing a lion skin. Ancient writers
disagreed as to whether the skin Hercules wore was
that of the Nemean lion, or one from a different lion,
which Hercules was said to have killed when he was
18 years old. The playwright Euripides wrote that
Hercules' lion skin came from the grove of Zeus, the
sanctuary at Nemea:

First he cleared the grove of Zeus of a lion, and put
its skin upon his back, hiding his yellow hair in its
fearful tawny gaping jaws.

Euripides, Hercules, 359

Septimius Severus was a general of great skill. Born in Africa in 146 AD, he married Julia Domna, it is said, who had a soothsayer's prediction that she would be married to an emperor. After Pertinax was killed and Didius Julianus won the throne by offering the greatest amount of money to the Praetorians, Septimius, by then the governor of Upper Pannonia, hurried to Rome with his Legions. Julianus was already dead by the time he got there in 193 AD. He disbanded the Praetorians, and then defeated his rival Pescennius Niger in the east, then Clodius Albinus in the west in 197 AD, finally dying of natural causes in Britain in 211 AD.

Precio SKU: 3823
US$ 225.00
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Cotización al: 01/25/21

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