After the Persian wars, Athens was the dominant naval power of the eastern Mediterranean; its successful commercial power led to the creation of an international coinage. These cufflinks are fashioned after ancient Athenian coins, first produced in the 490s BC and imitated for centuries in many parts of the ancient world. The owl that appears on the links is a symbol of wisdom associated with Athena, the city's patron goddess.
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Hidden Likeness: Photographer Emmet Gowin at the Morgan