Turns out the lyre depicted on the Israeli half shekel coin is fake. It is not a real historical image. It was based on an archaeological seal purchased from the antiquities market. One prominent Israeli archaeologist said it was genuine and it was accepted as such. So much so the lyre it depicted was placed on the Israeli half shekel coin. But it is now increasingly accepted that the seal was a fake.
The half shekel is not a unique coin. All Israeli coins bear ancient images drawn from ancient coins and seals.
“It’s a very clear message, that there’s a straight line connecting ancient and contemporary Israel, it’s proof that Jews were here and have a right to be here,” says Estrin, who published the study after working on it for about two and a half years. (Haaretz.)