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Cover von: Coining Urban Religion
Rubina Raja

Coining Urban Religion

Rubrik: Articles
Jahrgang 9 (2023) / Heft 3, S. 346-366 (21)
Publiziert 06.03.2024
DOI 10.1628/rre-2023-0023
Veröffentlicht auf Englisch.
This article focuses – out of an already small group – on three examples of civic coins from the Roman Near East on which we find images of temples situated in parts of their broader urban setting. The article focuses on this specific iconographic motif as a lens to examining urban religion. The contribution is therefore not as such a pure numismatic addition to the field, but rather a contribution that seeks to integrate numismatic material more firmly into the realm of iconographic analysis of ancient material culture. The focus is not on establishing whether the monuments in reality looked as they did on the coins or whether we can use coin images as primary source material when it comes to temple architecture. Rather, the intention is to examine what kinds of selected religious landscapes in urban settings were depicted on these coins and to consider what that might tell us about expressions of urban religion in the Roman Near East and whether coins were used to express local urban religious identities explicitly tied to urban locations. The images on the coins are discussed in order to examine potential underlying intentional expressions of urban religion as being shaped by the urban landscape, as well as by architectural definitions, but most importantly by people since they were the ones who coined the representations of urban religious situations, in turn relocating religion at the heart of being urban in antiquity.