Author Topic: Libya 20 dirham  (Read 1145 times)

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Offline mrbadexample

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Libya 20 dirham
« on: March 07, 2016, 11:29:12 AM »
Hi all,

I believe I am correct in identifying this coin as a Libya 20 dirham, 1975. However, I initially thought it was Egyptian due to the eagle being virtually identical to the one on the 10 milliemes in this thread:

http://www.worldofcoins.eu/forum/index.php/topic,24393.0.html

This didn't help my search.  :D

Can anyone tell me more about the use of the eagle on both countries' coins please?

Many thanks,
MBE

Online Figleaf

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Re: Libya 20 dirham
« Reply #1 on: March 07, 2016, 11:46:32 AM »
Right again. Other Arab states (e.g. Syria) used the same imagery. The eagle may well be thought of as a falcon, actually. Arabs are fans of falcon hunting. On the 1 dirham of this series is a horseman. Unsurprisingly, (rich) Arabs love horses and horse racing. It's not very different from European heraldry, dominated by lions and eagles doing things lions and eagles don't normally do ;)

The giveaway here (unless you read Arabic) is the symmetric decorative border, which occurs only on Libyan coins of the period 1975-1979, the early years of Gadaffi.

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

Offline mrbadexample

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Re: Libya 20 dirham
« Reply #2 on: March 07, 2016, 12:04:47 PM »
Thanks Peter. I guess I'm most surprised that the two falcons are so similar in design. Almost like the Libyans just decided to pinch the design from their neighbours: "That looks nice, let's have it on our coins too". :)

Online Figleaf

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Re: Libya 20 dirham
« Reply #3 on: March 07, 2016, 12:44:00 PM »
Probably so. In this period, Gamal Abd el Nasr was still the moral leader of the Arabic world. He had invented the United Arab Republic (UAR) in 1958, an idea that went back to the caliphates of earlier centuries, but in a much more modern form than IS today. The idea failed, because no Arab leader was prepared to play second fiddle to Nasr in his own country, but the concept didn't die. The symbol of the UAR is (guess what) a stylised eagle/falcon with a breast shield with two stars. The more natural birdie with the empty breast shield is clearly connected, but different enough.

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

Offline <k>

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Re: Libya 20 dirham
« Reply #4 on: March 07, 2016, 01:42:46 PM »


Syria, 1 pound, 1950. See: Here

and here: Single heraldic birds on state arms.

Offline mrbadexample

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Re: Libya 20 dirham
« Reply #5 on: March 07, 2016, 03:44:58 PM »
Thank you. If I see this bird again I'll know it could be either Egypt, Libya or Syria. Do any other countries use it?