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Obol of Ferdinand IIhttp:// of León

  • Obol of Ferdinand II of León. Pilgrimage Museum. Santiago de Compostela © Ministerio de Cultura

    Obol of Ferdinand II of León. Pilgrimage Museum. Santiago de Compostela © Ministerio de Cultura





1157 – 1188

Original title

Óbolo de Fernando II de León
Museum of Santiago and the Pilgrimages
Santiago de Compostela
A Coruña, Galicia

Coin which contains the oldest artistic representation of the theme of transporting the remains of the Apostle James by sea from Palestine to Galicia.

This obol, minted in the Santiago mint (1157 - 1188), depicts the scene of the transport of the beheaded body of the Apostle James, from the port of Jaffa to Iria Flavia (currently Padrón). In the lower part of the reverse side, we can see the ship hull and at the top, divided by the mast, to the right, the head of the Apostle is depicted, and to the left, the heads of the disciples Theodore and Athanasius who, according to tradition, accompanied the body. The identification of Galicia as the place where James was buried sparked many legends. This coin is a clear example which synthesises this tradition full of magical elements.

Details of the work



Specific name

Place of production
Santiago Mint


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