Kass Evans' Ancient Coins Page
The Jerusalem Temple on Coins
This line drawing is of a coin minted during the second revolt in Israel of
Jews against their Romans conquerors. The revolt of 132-135 CE was led by
Simon ben Kosiba who became known affectionately by the Aramaic "Bar Kochba"
or "Son of a Star" after Rabbi Akiba proclaimed him the Jewish messiah.
The above coin is silver and of the denomination "tetradrachm" or the
weight of four drachms. It is almost identical to the coin in the
photographs below except it has a star over the Temple no doubt representing
the hope of Bar Kochba.
One of the goals
of the revolt was to restore the Temple in Jerusalem which had been razed by
the Romans in 70 CE. The obverse picture shows a facade of the Jerusalem
Temple and inside the ark of the covenant with the Torah scrolls rolled up
and viewed from the end. The inscription written in old Hebrew characters
The coin's reverse shows a lulav (myrtle, palm brach, and willow tied in a
bundle) and etrog (citron fruit) which are used in the celebration of the
Jewish holiday Sukkot or Feast of Tabernacles. The inscription reads: Year
2 of the freedom of Israel.
The pictures of the coins are taken from: David Hendin, Guide to Biblical
Coins (New York: Amphora Books, 1987), no. 144-145 and Plate 10.
Last revised: June 8, 1996