Bronze Kotinos Wreath
The Kotinos which means olive tree branch, is inspired by the importance of the olive tree in Greek culture. The Ancient Greeks offered olive tree branches as wreaths to the winners of the Olympic and the Panathenaic Games. The olive tree was a symbol of prosperity, fertility, peace and euphoria. It has been known since Ancient times, because of the fact that its ideograms were found in both Linear A (1900 BC) and B (1400 BC).In particular, the Ancient Greeks, when using the word "kotinos", meant the “wild olive tree”. Those branches, were used to pay tribute to the winners and originated from the city of Athens, and specifically from the sacred olive tree of Goddess Athena on the Acropolis. Similarly, in the area of Olympia, they were cut from the wild olive trees located, in the plain of Alpheus river. The sacred olive tree of Goddess Athena, was located near the Erechtheion and was related to her victory against God Poseidon, a well-known argument in between them; which was related to the final naming of the city of Athens. The “kotinos” of the river Alpheus, grew up in the area of Altis, in the location which Pausanias called the "Pantheion". The "Pantheion" was located behind the temple of Zeus and near the altar of the Nymphs. It is worth mentioning, that the “kotinos” is found on the head of the chryselephantine (gold & ivory) statue of God Zeus in the area of Olympia; which was built by the renowned architect Phidias. "Kotinos" was also depicted on the coins of the area of Elis, during the empire of Hadrian.
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