Coins of Roman Times from Berezan Island – end of 20th – beginning of 21st century finds

Keywords: coin, island, excavation unit, Roman times, settlement, Berezan, Olbia


The coin material of Roman times, which was found during archaeological studies of an ancient settlement on the island of Berezan, is analyzed in the paper.

The ancient settlement on the island of Berezan is primarily known as the first Greek colony in the Northern Black Sea region.

In addition to the sites of the archaic period of the 6th – 5th centuries BCE, the objects belonging to other historical epochs are studied on the island. Roman times are represented by a large number of materials: ceramics, epigraphic finds, damaged archaeological sites (remains of dwellings, utility pits, etc.). Almost all researchers of the site have singled out single artefacts from Roman times. Unfortunately, the cultural layers of the first centuries of the New Era were destroying starting from the construction of the Turkish fortress finishing the works that preceded World War II. And nowadays, the process of destruction is still in progress due to large-scale grave robbery. In recent years, during archaeological studies, the coins of Roman times have usually been found in mixed redeposited layers.

Coins of the 2nd – 3rd centuries CE are rare archaeological artefacts, found during research on the island, but at the same time, they are not unique finds.

Currently, there is no generalized work cataloguing the numismatic material of the Roman times found during more than a century of archaeological study of the ancient settlement on the island of Berezan. Information about coins can be found in archeological reports and publications only as additional material. Such finds are mentioned in the works of P.Y. Karyshkovskyi, V.A. Anokhina, M.F. Boltenko, S.B. Buiskykh, V.V. Krutilov, and others.

At the end of the 20th – beginning of the 21st century, coins of the Roman times were found at different excavation units of the archaeological research on the island headed by various scholars. V.V. Nazarov found coins at excavation units ‘R-1V’ and ‘T’, V.V. Krutilov at ‘T’ and ‘O’, and O.I. Smirnov and D.V. Bondarenko at ‘HSh’. All material is clearly dated to the 2nd – 3rd centuries CE, classified by Roman and Olbia minting of bronze and silver and belongs to the reigns of the emperors Antoninus Pius, Septimius Severus, and Archon of Olbia Dada son of Satyros. This gives us the opportunity to support the assumption of Ukrainian archaeologists that in the second half of the 2nd – beginning of the 3rd century CE on the island of Berezan there was a fortification of Roman troops detachment which garrisoned in Olbia.


Lapin, V.V. (1976). Otchet o raskopkakh drevnegrecheskogo poseleniia na o Berezan v 1976 g. [Report on the excavations of the ancient Greek settlement on the Berezan island in 1976]. The Scientific Archive of Institute Archaeology NAS of Ukraine, 1976/116 [in Russian].

How to Cite
Smyrnov, O., & Gorbenko, K. (2021). Coins of Roman Times from Berezan Island – end of 20th – beginning of 21st century finds. Eminak: Scientific Quarterly Journal, (3(35), 154-164.

Most read articles by the same author(s)