Syria, Seleukis and Pieria, Apameia
Size: 20mm, Weight: 10.2 grams
Obverse: Head of Dionysos right, wearing ivy wreath
Reverse: A APAMEWN THS IERAS (......), Filleted thyrsos.
In Greek mythology, a thyrsus (thyrsos) was a staff of giant fennel (Ferula communis) covered with ivy vines and leaves, sometimes wound with taeniae and always topped with a pine cone. These staffs were carried by Dionysus and his followers. Euripides wrote that honey dripped from the thyrsos staves that the Bacchic maenads carried. The thyrsus was a sacred instrument at religious rituals and fetes.