CRETE. Knossos. Circa 350-270 BC.
Stater (Silver, 24 mm, 10.72 g). Female head to left. Rev.
The Labyrinth of Knossos in the form of a double line counterclockwise swastika; a star in center; four incuse punches in angles; all within shallow round incuse. Le Rider, Crétoises, p. 30, 187 and pl. VII, 1 (same dies
). Svoronos, Crete, -, cf. 40 and pl. VI, 6 (same obverse die
, but the reverse clockwise). Rare. A lightly toned and attractive piece with a lovely archaizing rendering of the Labyrinth of Knossos. Minor area of weakness on the obverse, otherwise,
From the Dr. F. Collection, X. Wattebled, 26 January 2022, 43 (with a photocopy of the French export license enclosed).
The reverse of this lovely coin shows, in a stylized form, the famous Labyrinth of Knossos, which Daidalos constructed at the behest of King Minos to contain the monstrous Minotaur, son of Minos' wife Pasiphaë, and a snow-white bull. The Minotaur was eventually defeated and killed by the Athenian prince Theseus, who then managed to escape the labyrinth by following a spool of thread he had uncoiled behind him while walking through the maze, as was advised to him by Minos' daughter, Ariadne - the proverbial Ariadne's thread.