The exhibition “Fire and Coin – Archaelogy and Fire” was inaugurated on October, 12 and will run until January, 10 2013. It is organized by the Numismatic Museum of Athens in collaboration with the Ephorate of Underwater Antiquities and examines the dual nature of fire, as a creative, inspiring force but also one that causes awe and destruction.
The exhibition features objects on loan from the Archaeological Museums of Argos and Thebes, and the numismatic collections of the Bank of Greece and Alpha Bank. It is organized in the framework of “Glowing Fire Stories”, the nationwide Environment and Culture action for 2012.
“Fire and Coin” is referring to the first part of the exhibition, showcasing coins and medals depicting fire and its related symbols (e.g. ritual fires, volcanoes, the Lighthouse of Alexandria etc.), as well as mythical gods and heroes related to the element of fire, such as Hephaestus.
The second part of the exhibition, entitled “Archaeology and Fire” features (parts of) numismatic “treasures” that were damaged by fire, in periods of war or due to a natural disaster, and were hidden in secret places to be protected and retrieved at a later time. One of them is the treasure of the Acropolis, destroyed in 480 BC by a fire set by the Persians.
Also exhibited are finds from underwater excavations, by the Ephorate of Underwater Antiquities.