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SICLUS (σίγλος or σίκλος) is a transliteration of the word shekel used by Semitic nations of West Asia. The shekel was in Syria and Babylon the unit of coinage, and varied in weight according to locality: see PONDERA ad init. The ordinary Persian silver siglos weighed about 86 grains, and was reckoned by Julius Pollux as equivalent to 1 1/3 Attic drachms: the heavy gold shekel of Phoenicia weighed nearly 260 grains. Thus it need not surprise us to find, at a time when the Greek drachma was the universal unit of currency, that the siglos was in some places considered as a tetradrachm, in some places as a didrachm, and in some as a drachm.


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