The Dolphin Man
13 Mar 2020
legend or mythological text tells us how some sailors turned into dolphins. There
are very few references to this metamorphosis, because it seems that in the
Greek mythology there are no gods or demigods, who are half a dolphin half a
man. This is why I found it so strange, when I found a coin with such features.
is an electron stater from Mysia, Kyzikos. Around 550-450 BC. Figure of a naked
winged man with a dolphin head, swimming while holding a tuna fish with his
left hand and his right hand raised behind his head. 16.11gr., 20 mm.
Numismatics Limited. Auction 11. 7/4/16. Lot 407. 57.500 GPB.
This piece of great beauty is not to be missed. Following the purest Greek
style of those times, it shows well the swimming movement of a naked man, his
muscles and even his relaxed penis… You cannot ask for more realism and
perfection in a carving which hardly reaches 2 cm.
other mythological creatures, the dolphin man has no name. For the ancient
Greek he was not important enough to get “baptized”. All of us remember many of
these creatures: the fish man = triton, the horse man = centaur, the bull man =
minotaur; the eagle woman = harpy, etc.
Despite the lack of
documents about this hybrid creature, we have found an Etruscan pot of the 6th
century BC, representing the moment when the sailors turn into dolphins.