The tokens excavated in the Athenian Agora constitute a unique case of more than 300 types and approx. 1,400 specimens, of which the find spots can be plotted against the thriving political and administrative centre of Classical and Hellenistic Athens. The issue of authority – who was responsible for the issuing of tokens – has been the subject of debate between scholars. That Athenian tokens were issued by the polis, and were employed in the workings of the government is a fact which cannot be denied. On the other hand, there is plentiful evidence which points in the direction of privately issued tokens. Cult associations and civic corporations, as well as members of such associations, issued tokens and sponsored their distribution, and the associated benefits on a number of occasions. The sharing of tokens helped create and sustain strong bonds among their members.