Memoranda Numismatica Atheniensia

Wolfgang Fischer-Bossert, Bemerkungen zum Griechischen Münzrelief. Memoranda Numismatica Atheniensia 5. Self-published by the Benaki Museum and the KIKPE Foundation, Athens 2020. 48 pp., colour illustrations. Paperback, 29.5 x 19.5 cm. ISBN 978-960-476-278-1. 6 euros. Andrew Meadows, Between Greece and Rome: Coinage in the Imperium of Mark Antony. Memoranda Numismatica Atheniensia 4. Self-published by the Benaki Museum and the KIKPE Foundation, Athens 2019. 63 pp., colour illustrations. Paperback. 29.5 x 19.5 cm. ISBN 978-960-476-253-8. 6 euros.
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This series with the euphonious name “Memoranda Numismatica Atheniensia” isn’t one of the long-established numismatic monograph series that have virtually been around forever. It has only been published since 2016. It is a joint publication by two well-known institutions from Athens: the Benaki Museum, incidentally the largest private museum of Greece, and the KIKPE Foundation, whose important numismatic collection is kept on loan in the Benaki Museum (although currently not exhibited). Every year, the series publishes a volume on Greek numismatics. We have the most recent volumes in our library. A good opportunity to take a look at this series.

Great Names, Many Languages

Firstly, it is worth noticing that the series is multilingual. Volume 4 is in English, volume 5 in German – an English and a Greek summary supplement the texts. A French monograph has also been published in a previous volume. What the texts have in common is that their authors come from the premier league of the numismatic world. Andrew Meadows, who deals with the coinage of Mark Antony in volume 4, is a professor at Oxford and was curator for Greek coins at the British Museum for a long time. Wolfgang Fischer-Bossert, whose essay on the Greek coin relief is volume 5 of this series, is a private lecturer at the University of Vienna and taught and researched numismatics at several posts for decades. The French monograph was written by the Belgian numismatist François de Callataÿ, former director of the Belgian coin cabinet and professor at the Sorbonne. You see: actual luminaries of Greek numismatics publish research essays is this series, and they are certainly worth the read.

Good Quality, Manageable Size

Although the texts actually are monographs, I deliberately avoid speaking of “books” since the size of the publications is very manageable: 20 to 30 not particularly densely printed pages, roughly in A4 format. So, before buying the volumes you should be aware that you will finish reading the essays of this series rather quickly despite the scholarly language. As is appropriate for such object-related topics, the text is followed by almost as many pages of (colour) plates and coin descriptions. By the way, the print quality is excellent – I have not encountered such great paper quality in current publications for a long time.

So, let’s summarise: top-class authors, research essays, both the content and the printing quality are excellent, a manageable size. To decide whether all of them or individual volumes of the series are worth purchasing, you still need to know the price. I have good news for you: the price of just 6 (!) euros per volume is ridiculously cheap and should not keep you from the purchase.


You can order both Andrew Meadows’s “Between Greece and Rome: Coinage in the Imperium of Mark Antony” and Wolfgang Fischer-Bossert’s “Bemerkungen zum Griechischen Münzrelief” from the online shop of the Benaki Museum.