The cult to the oikistes on the earliest Messambrian coinage
Keywords:Messambria Pontica, Early coins, Founder’s cult, Melsas
The present article deals with the earlier Messambrian drachm that is said to have been struck in the second quarter of the 5th century BC. The coin has images on both sides that are interpreted as that of the mythical oikistes Melsas. Based on the specifics in the iconography of both images, as well as the impact of the Kalchedonian coin iconography as part of close interrelations between metropolia and apoikia, the previous interpretation is questioned. The study reached the conclusion that it was the historical oikistest that was depicted on the obverse and the eponymous hero on the reverse, respectively. The issuing of the coin was due to the introduction of the cult to the latter.