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Bringing Wine and Joy: Dionysos and Viticulture on Coins of Asia Minor

Bronze Coin of Maeonia in Lydia under Septimius Severus, 193–211 CE. Dionysos giving his leopards wine to drink. Pecunem Gitbud & Naumann, Auction 15, 6 April 2014, lot 442.

Lecture Ilse and Leo Mildenberg Memorial Lecture

Harvard Art Museums, 32 Quincy Street
Cambridge MA

Many regions of ancient Asia Minor were what we would now think of as “wine country.” In Greek and Roman times, several cities prospered from viticulture, as evidenced by their coins depicting grapes, amphorae, and the wine god Dionysos himself. More than 50 cities in Asia Minor claimed to be his birthplace, and would organize wine festivals and Carnivalesque parades to honor him. Johannes Nollé, professor of ancient history and epigraphy at Ludwig-Maximilians University, in Munich, will present some of the best examples of coins from the region and convey some of the joie de vivre so characteristic of life in classical antiquity.

Following the lecture, the ancient art galleries will remain open until 8pm.

Free admission

The lecture will take place in Menschel Hall, Lower Level. Please enter the museums via the entrance on Broadway.

Complimentary parking available in the Broadway Garage, 7 Felton Street, Cambridge.

To honor the memory of renowned numismatist and scholar Leo Mildenberg (1912–2001) and his years of friendship with Harvard University, a fund was established by his friends and colleagues and endowed in 2005 by his wife, Ilse Mildenberg-Seehausen.