Can the drachmas in the 'laws of Solon 'be explained as silver weights, used in the Athenian economy as a silver standard before the adoption of coinage in the second half of the sixth century BCE? I believe the answer is a firm no. In this paper I marshal historical, archaeological, numismatic and literary evidence to demonstrate that pre-Peisistratid Athens had an essentially agrarian economy in which local trade was usually denominated in barley, and weighed silver was used only to a limited extent in foreign trade and travel. It was the expanding trade of the Peisistratid era that led to the adoption of coinage, following a well-established Ionian model.
|Number of pages||32|
|Journal||Historia - Zeitschrift fur Alte Geschichte|
|Publication status||Published - 2012|