Two gold Fanams: a comparison

Started by Rangnath, June 26, 2007, 04:54:14 AM

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Rangnath

     From a faded envelope in a mildewed box, appeared a gold fanam.  It is small:  .2 grams and barely 6 mm across.  But it is rather beautiful, isn?t it?
     I was able to find information about a authenticated gold fanam remarkably similar to the one I came upon.  King Kantirava Narasa, between 1638 and 1662 AD, was the first king of Mysore to issue coins with inscriptions.  His fanams of Lord Narasimha are now known as Kantirava Fanams and, unfortunately for identification purposes, were much copied, even during the British Raj. The one on the left is one of those coins. I don?t expect an answer, but my question is:  what is the age of the coin on the right?
     Holding yogic positions are difficult.  The lion faced Narasimha, an avatar of Lord Vishnu, is using a stick to prop up His legs on the coin on the left.  That is said to be a characteristic of Kantirava fanams.  Is the Narasimha on the right on steroids?  If He is a He, he has definitely worked out.  On the other hand, the Deity on the right could be an avatar of Parvati, Vishnu?s consort, from the suggestive placement of two pellets. 
     The opposite sides of both coins seem nearly identical to each other. Anyone have an opinion about this coin?

BC Numismatics

Richie,gold Fanams were issued by quite a few states,especially Travancore,which became an Indian Princely State under British suzerainty in 1795,having been an independent state since the 1750's.

There is a guy named Biju (spiraltreet) on http://www.cointalk.org/index.php who can help you there.If you join Coin Talk,you can get in touch with him by email.

Aidan.

Rangnath

Thanks Aidan. I registered.  And then I couldn't figure out how to create a new topic.  Oh, well.  I did send an email to Biju, though I couldn't figure out how to attach an image!

BC Numismatics

Richie,did you upload your photos to http://www.imageshack.us or to Photobucket? That sometimes helps.

Aidan.

Overlord

Quote from: Rangnath on June 26, 2007, 04:54:14 AM
     I don?t expect an answer, but my question is:  what is the age of the coin on the right?
     
A quick glace at Gold Fanams 1336-2000 by Hans Herrli shows both fanams to be of approximately the same period. The one to the right looks close to type 6.04.03 while the left one looks like type 6.04.09. On both types we observe the reverse Kamthirava legend replaced by its mirror image. The "Ka" of Kamthirava now looks like an 8. The mass range reported in the catalogue is 0.34-0.35 g though.

Rangnath

Thanks Overlord!
This is one of my favorite coins and knowing more is way cool!
As for the weight, I'll have to re weigh it when I get the chance.
richie