Athenian tetradrachm, also known as an "owl" for the image on the reverse. 480 B.C.

Athenian Tetradrachm ca 480 B.C.

This tetradrachm of Athens was produced at about the same time as the decadrachm of Syracuse. This early Athenian tetradrachm is a good example of high quality numismatic artwork for the time and is thus useful as a comparison with the work of the Demareteion master. Notice the heavier lines and the general lack of realistic detail, particularly in the contours of the face on the obverse, and the stylization of the owl on the reverse. In contrast, the Syracusan decadrachm displays finer lines, realistic hair and much more detailed contouring of the face, as well as an attempt to portray movement in the chariot of the reverse with the horses in slightly different poses and the driver raising his whip.