A note about these Widow's Mites: These mites were part of a hoard of over 2,000 coins found in Israel years ago. Robert used a light touch in conserving these, so they still carry the soil from the Holy Land that protected them for thousands of years. The majority of the coins in this hoard are the Widow's Mites (which is what is in your package). However, an interesting historical note, the hoard contained late Romans coins as well (not included in this package) dating to circa 400 AD. This indicates that the Mites in the hoard had been used in Judea for over 400 years after they were minted! They are well-loved and well-used, but we can tell from the distinct shape and size that they are Widow's Mites - amazing witnesses of 400 years of Biblical history.
The tiny bronze Widow’s Mite coins were not Roman, but true Judean coins that were minted during the short period of Jewish history between the Old and New Testaments, when Israel was a self-governing nation. Called a prutah or leptah, they were minted under the King and High Priest Alexander Jannaeus, the first of these coins were minted about 78 BC, and perhaps a few decades after, however they were in circulation at the time of Christ, and are remembered for the key part they played in Jesus’ teaching related to tithing and giving. It was this tiny coin that was actively traded in the markets that Jesus and the disciples passed, and would have been used by the common folk who flocked to listen to the parables of Jesus.
These coins were of so little value, that striking them was done hastily, and, most of the time, much of the design didn't make it on the small coins. This example, framed by Robert in 18K Gold and Sterling Silver is one of the best we've ever seen! It is truly a unique piece of history that comes out of a carefully currated collection amassed in the 1970s from coins excavated near Jerusalem.
On one side is the eight-rayed star, signifying heaven, and on the other, an anchor - a power symbol of the day.
A symbol of faith, hope and selflessness, the humble Widow's Mite has become one of the most loved and valued coins of all time.
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