• Gennadii Kazakevych Dr. Hab., professor at the Art History department Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv 64/13, Volodymyrska Street, City of Kyiv, Ukraine, 01601
Keywords: La Tène culture, Trans-Carpathian region, Galish-Lovachka, horse-rider, Epona, Celtic religion


The article deals with the iconography of the Celtic coins which come from the South-Eastern Europe. Main attention is paid to the coins found in the Trans-Carpathian region of Ukraine. The aim of this article is to shed light on symbolism of the Celtic coins, in particular on a horse-rider figure on the reverse of these coins. Research methodology is based on the structuralist approach. The scientific novelty. The author shows how the imagery of the coins was connected to the Celtic religious beliefs and cults. The Celtic issues from the Trans-Carpathian region were derived chiefly from the coins of Philip II and Audoleon. A horse-rider image is present on almost all of the Celtic coins from the Trans-Carpathian area and nearby regions. While on most of coins the rider’s figure is highly schematized, some of them contain a detailed image of a female figure. There is no reason to suggest that the Celtic women used to lead their communities or were widely involved in the warfare as military leaders or individual fighters. At the same time, their significance in the religious and ideological spheres of warfare was great. One can assume that the horse-rider depicted on the Celtic coins was considered rather as an image of deity associated with war, fertility and horse-breeding. It is highly probable that this deity in fact was Epona or other related goddess. The coins were widely used in both trade and ritual practices. In particular, the Classical sources mention the Celtic ritual of devotion of coins to the goddess of hunting. The findings of coins with chop-marks, similar to those found in the Gallic and Gallo-Roman sanctuaries, should be mentioned in this context as well.


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How to Cite
Kazakevych, G. (2021). HORSE-RIDER IMAGE ON THE COINS OF THE EASTERN CELTS AND THE CULT OF CELTIC WAR GODDESS. The Ukrainian Numismatic Annual, (5), 81-92.