1794 Large Cent was the first coin to depict Liberty with Phrygian Cap on a pole.

Our program for February will be a slide show from the American Numismatic Association library titled, “The Phrygian Cap: From an Ancient Peasant Hat to Marianne’s Chapeau, to the Smurfs.

The Phrygian cap originated with the Phrygian people whose ancient culture can be traced back to the southern Balkans. It was used as a way to identify themselves during times of war and as they migrated throughout the Indo-European areas. By the late stages of the Roman Republic, the pileus, similar to the Phrygian hat, was used as a symbol to identify freemen, non-slaves, and was given to slaves upon the owners emancipating them.

During a festival in Troyes, a statue of the goddess Libertas was holding a lance and a Phrygian hat was placed on the end symbolizing their freedom. The symbol was adopted as by the people with Marianne, the symbol of the French Republic, being shown wearing a red Phrygian cap. Later, the cap on a pole became a recognized symbol of freedom.

MCCC member Jerry Grzenda will supplement the discussion with parts of his collection of coins with the Phrygian cap.

Man in Phrygian costume, Hellenistic period (3rd–1st century BCE), Cyprus

Bust of Marianne, displayed in the corridors of the Luxembourg Palace, seat of the French Senate.

The Smurfs

Reminder, if you have not paid your 2017 membership dues, please pay them this month. Membership is still the very low $8 per year and $2 for Young Numismatists, a price that has not changed in many years. MCCC dues help support our education and outreach programs. At 66-cents per meeting, it is the best deal in town! To pay your dues, download our dues form pdf from our Digital Document Library and you can either pay dues at the next meeting or mail your dues to the address on the form.

Doors will open at 7:00 PM and the meeting will start at 7:15 PM SHARP.

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