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In the literature devoted to Tanais the opinion had long held sway to the effect that Tanais maintained special relations with Phanagoria, ever since the idea was first formulated by D. B. Shelov as far back as the beginning of the 1970s. On the basis of an analysis of the collections of stamps found in Tanais and Phanagoria, the scholar concluded that the thrust of the economy and politics of the cities in the Asiatic and European Bosporus must have been different and that the trading activities of Tanais must have been linked first and foremost with Phanagoria. Yet at present, thanks to the accumulation of new material and its reinterpretation, these conclusions can no longer be regarded as well-founded. It would seem that a “common economic space” existed within the confines of the Bosporan state during the Hellenistic period.


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