Finn235 Posted January 23 · Member Share Posted January 23 Had intended to get this one out in 2022 but life got the better of me. For the most part, I was able to stay focused on my two main focuses (Roman and Indo Sassanian) but sometimes a deal just falls into your lap... Most of these were either incidental lot finds, a type I had been eyeballing for some time, or else was a total impulse buy! 1. Turk Shahis, Shahi Tegin or "Tegin of Khorasan" AR drachm Obv: Portrait of Shahi Tegin 3/4 right, Bactrian Sri Shaho before, Brahmi legend around CCW: sri-hitivira kharalava parame – svara sri sahi tiginadeva karita ("His Excellency, Iltäbär of Khalaj, worshipper of the Supreme God, His Excellency the King, the divine Lord Tegin had minted this coin") Rev: Iranian fire-god Atar facing, Pahlavi around: hpt-hpt t’ ("[year] 77 PYE = 728 AD") tkyn’ hwl’s s’n MLKA ("Tegin, King of Khorasan") Why it made the top 10: Obviously aside from being, IMO, one of the most outlandish and alien-looking coins ever minted, it represents a fascinating snapshot of the Turk Kahaganate, which was briefly a central Asian superpower that checked the expansion of the Arabs for more than a century. 2. Kidarite Huns, Buddhamitra (or Buddhatala) AR drachm, ca late 4th century AD Obv: Sassanian-style bust 3/4 right Rev: Bahram V-style fire altar with attentants, BhuDaTaLa beneath Why it made my top 10: Besides being an excellent deal and in fantastic condition for the type, this represents an important and overall rare chapter in the history of NW India, and also serves as an interesting preface to the Indo Sassanian coinage, as it is after defeating the Kidarites that Peroz adopted his 3rd crown with victory wings, evidently modeled after this one. 3. Uncertain Central Asia, imitative Peroz drachm Why it made the Top 10: This coin is not Indo-Sassanian, official Sassanian, nor does it fit any of the molds of the "official" Hephthalite imitations with pellets outside the obverse margin. I bought it because sometimes in order to articulate what an Indo-Sassanian *is*, you have to start with what it *isnt*. 4. Late Arab-Sasanian, "Eastern Sistan" BI drachm Anonymous, ca early 8th century AD Why it made the Top 10: I've found the slow demise of Sassanian coinage design under the Caliphates to be fascinating, and this rare series was the last drachm-sized Khusro II imitation to be minted in Iran proper, outlasting even the Umayyads into the reign of the Abbasids. It also has a very distinct and charmingly simple artistic style. 5. Migration period, pair of AE4s imitating "cross in wreath" but with swastikas instead of crosses Why it made the Top 10: I love post-Roman coinage. I love the rare rulers and obscure varieties thar come with the "cross in wreath" series. These were a surprise find from a Roma lot of Itty bitty AE4s, and as far as I can tell, they are unpublished and I can't find anything really even remotely similar to these two. 6. Seuthes III, King of Thrace AE Chalkous Why it made the Top 10: This was 100% lot bycatch that grew on me once I had it in hand. Seuthes was a contemporary of Alexander the Great, initially a client king, but he managed to wrestle independence from the Macedonians while Alexander was busy with more pressing matters. It's a somewhat scarce coin, but more importantly it's one of only a few dozen coins to depict a king's portrait from before the Hellenistic age. 7. Gaul, Santones AE quadrans or semis Bare male head right, CONTOVTOS Wolf crouching beneath small tree This was one of my favorites from a larger lot, and had, IMO, very intriguing iconography. It is a very welcome addition to my scant Celtic collection 8. Gaul, Ambiani AE unit Disjointed crested helmet Rider on horseback with knife or small sword This was one of the most challenging attributions from the Celtic lot, and apparently imitates - of all things - a Celtiberian denarius! 9. Saint Helena halfpenny, 1821 I dont often go for random world coins these days, but this one caught my interest. Commissioned by the EIC to provide small change needed by the remote island's booming economy due to the arrival of Napoleon, his entourage, and the soldiers stationed there to ensure he did not escape again. Of course, Napoleon died before these coins could be shipped to his island, and everyone left when he did. Of the 704,000 St Helena halfpennies minted, a majority were sent back to be recycled, and the rest circulated on the island. 10. Vandal kingdom of N. Africa, Gunthamund AE4 "denarius" While not the most exciting of the Vandal coins, I always found this one interesting as the D apparently is likely intended to stand for Denarius, which otherwise had not been minted since the late 3rd century, but legally was still a denomination too worthless for coining, since Diocletian's monetary reforms of the 290s. Further evidence is his silver coins, which are evidently tariffed at 50 "denarii" per siliqua. Honorable mention: Western Satraps, Vijayasena as mahakshatrapa, I think SE 166 = 244 AD Before starting on Indo Sassanian, I tried to collect the Kshatrapas, before realizing that other than the ~20 in the middle of that dynasty, most of them are extremely rare. I still enjoy the series, and snapped up this Vijayasena that is remarkable for having a 100% complete reverse inscription - his coins are usually the best of the entire series, but finding a perfectly centered reverse is still quite a feat! 24 2 Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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