Author Topic: Ala-ud-din Muhammad Khwarezmshah, Cast Jitals, Ghazna  (Read 274 times)

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Offline capnbirdseye

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Ala-ud-din Muhammad Khwarezmshah, Cast Jitals, Ghazna
« on: March 18, 2018, 05:46:26 PM »
I've given these their own thread as they are also posted recently on a mixed type thread, the top one with the straight edges gives the impression it has been cast in a strip with several others & then snapped off which may well be the case, when examining the edges it show clear evidence of this, just like the edge of a broken biscuit,
 2.66g  and  3g
« Last Edit: March 27, 2018, 11:08:34 AM by THCoins »
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Offline THCoins

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Re: Ala-ud-din Muhammad Khwarezmshah, Cast Jitals, Ghazna
« Reply #1 on: March 18, 2018, 06:38:59 PM »
Fine you showing these again. As they really seem to stand out among the khwarezmshah coinage. One wonders what the reason might be that cast coins were minted instead of the customary struck coins. One possibility might be that these were minted while Ala-al-din Muhammad had to retreat from his former territory due to the pressure of the Mongols.

Offline capnbirdseye

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Re: Ala-ud-din Muhammad Khwarezmshah, Cast Jitals, Ghazna
« Reply #2 on: March 19, 2018, 08:57:51 PM »
One possibility might be that these were minted while Ala-al-din Muhammad had to retreat from his former territory due to the pressure of the Mongols.

Possibly true, to engrave metal dies required skill & specially hardened tools,  to make a clay mould required more basic skill and very simple tools
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Offline Figleaf

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Re: Ala-ud-din Muhammad Khwarezmshah, Cast Jitals, Ghazna
« Reply #3 on: March 19, 2018, 11:39:54 PM »
Muhammad was constantly on the run from pursuing Mongol troops. Even presuming that he had a mobile mint and metal, he wouldn't have had much use for coppers while he would have needed gold. In fact, copper would have hindered his mobility.

The Mongols destroyed whole cities, killing everyone in their way. Being nomads, expressing their wealth in ponies and cattle, they had no use for money.

The ones that could have used coppers after Herat had fallen were the survivors, trying to restore a degree of trade and civilisation. They might not have found minters among them, but there would have been plenty copper in the ruins of the destroyed cities. Since the Mongols were not big on leaving garrisons and there were no examples of coins in the name of Ghenghis to copy, the survivors would have had few problems producing coins in the name of Muhammad at least as long as he still had a chance to reach loyal territory and raise a new army. As it was, that was exactly what his son did.

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

Offline THCoins

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Re: Ala-ud-din Muhammad Khwarezmshah, Cast Jitals, Ghazna
« Reply #4 on: March 20, 2018, 09:56:01 AM »
That's a quite possible scenario Peter. But naming the defeated ruler on these would seem a bit like an exception in the coinage at the time. There are many examples of copper coinage which became anonymous, "ADL al-Sultan" or just named the Abassid caliph, from this period. But it hink we all agree that these cast coins signify troubled times and a downfall of normal society and mint structure.

Anthony

Offline Figleaf

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Re: Ala-ud-din Muhammad Khwarezmshah, Cast Jitals, Ghazna
« Reply #5 on: March 20, 2018, 06:24:24 PM »
Though I am pretty old, I was no contemporary of Ghenghis (good thing), so I can only speculate. Today, with perfect hindsight, we know that Muhammad was beaten, would die soon and his son, Jalal, would be unable to get back the lost lands. However, that was not clear at all to contemporaries. Sure, Muhammad was beaten, but he had the last "laugh" laying waste to the undefended Mongol camp. He commanded an amount of loyalty and legitimacy for religious reasons, while the authority of the Mongols was based purely on fear. There were surviving Khwarezmian troops (Jalal joined them after his father's death), there was remaining treasure and there were remaining allies (the Afghans would soon switch to the Monghol side and the sultan of Delhi didn't want to offend Genghis, though). This is exactly why the Monghol army kept pursuing Muhammad. With time, he had the capacity to raise a new army that would have to be beaten again. The pursuit was to deny him time.

So why would the survivors have made coins in the name of Muhammad, rather than anonymous coins? First of all because Muhammad would not have looked kindly on anonymous coins if he could have made a comeback and he did not have a pleasant character. However, it was a pretty safe choice also: the Mongols could not read Arabic and the coins could have been explained as pre-existing if, unexpectedly, the Mongols would have taken an interest in them. Also, there was the advantage that local people knew these coins and trusted them.

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