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Greece to issue 2-euro coins to commemorate the Battle of Thermopylae

Greece is preparing to issue a two-euro coin in order to commemorate 2,500 years since the legendary Battle of Thermopylae against the Persian army in 480 BC.

On its national side, the 2-euro coin, will depict a helmet of the ancient Hellenic warriors and the inscription ‘2,500 years from the battle of Thermopylae.’

It will have regular circulation in the eurozone. Τhe maximum issue will be 735,000 pieces.

The coins issue was announced during the World Money Fair 2020, held in Berlin.

The mint of Athens will also produce a commemorative silver coin for collectors, which can be bought for 10 euros.

The silver coin will feature an ancient Greek warrior with a shield and spear and a battle scene on the other side.

The Greek numismatic program for collectors reportedly includes also a €200 Gold Coin dedicated to “The Persian Wars.”


The Battle of Thermopylae was fought between an alliance of Greek city-states, led by King Leonidas of Sparta, and the Persian Empire of Xerxes I over the course of three days. It ended with the defeat of the Greeks due to betrayal.

A Greek force of approximately 7,000 men marched north to block the pass in the middle of 480 BC. The Persian army, alleged by the ancient sources to have numbered over one million, but today considered to have been much smaller ranging between about 100,000 and 150,000.

The vastly outnumbered Greeks held off the Persians for seven days (including three of battle) before the rear-guard was annihilated in one of history’s most famous last stands. During two full days of battle, the small force led by Leonidas blocked the only road by which the massive Persian army could pass.

After the second day, a local resident named Ephialtes betrayed the Greeks by revealing a small path used by shepherds. It led the Persians behind the Greek lines.

Leonidas, aware that his force was being outflanked, dismissed the bulk of the Greek army and remained to guard their retreat with 300 Spartans and 700 Thespians, fighting to the death.

The Battle of Thermopylae (“Hot Gates”) has become a symbol of heroic resistance and sacrifice for the home land.

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One comment

  1. Lovely! How can we buy these coins in Australia? Please post a link