Author Topic: Chaganian drachm (about 600 AD). Can you help?  (Read 103 times)

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Offline Pellinore

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Chaganian drachm (about 600 AD). Can you help?
« on: June 12, 2017, 11:38:12 PM »
I just bought this silver Chaganian drachm (these are from the 6th-7th century, issued in what's now the far southeast of Uzbekistan), and Iím curious to know what you think of it.

I canít find the likes in the little Kuznetsov catalog (Katalog monyet Chaganiana V-VIII vv, Tashkent 1994). Or in the Sylloge Nummorum Sasanidarum Usbekistan (Vienna 2012). Has it been clipped? The weight is 1.7 gr, but thatís within the known range of weights. There are no countermarks. The reverse looks double struck, but also less clear than the standard Chaganian reverse.

I hope somebody of this very knowledgeable forum is willing to share his knowledge concerning this type of coins. Iím not an expert, but a loving amateur. 
-- Paul


Offline Figleaf

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Re: Chaganian drachm (about 600 AD). Can you help?
« Reply #1 on: June 19, 2017, 11:03:05 AM »
A difficult one, Pellinore. I haven't even worked out yet where Chagan was (there are two rivers in Kazakstan called Chagan, but in both cases, the name is derived from a Mongol word). Your documentation is better than mine, since I don't have the Kuznetsov book, but I haven't found your coin in the Sylloge Nummorum Sasanidarum Usbekistan either.

I am sure you have already seen the Sassanian influence. This - and the metal used - contrasts completely with the issues of Chach, that run until the VIIth century. My best guess is that it would be a coin of one of the Turkic tribes that eventually overran Chach. Your coin reminds me of the late 8th century Turco-Hephtalite dirhems. I wonder if your coin is a prototype of this series.

The coin does not look clipped and if its weight is normal it would not be. In fact, I am not sure coins were clipped at all in this time/space, e.g. because they went by weight, at least for large transactions.

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

Offline THCoins

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Re: Chaganian drachm (about 600 AD). Can you help?
« Reply #2 on: June 19, 2017, 02:59:28 PM »
I like the portrait style, but i do think the coin is clipped. This simply because i know this Tokharistan type from specimen with a more sasanian style rim.
Look for similar specimen in this Zeno category.

Offline Pellinore

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Re: Chaganian drachm (about 600 AD). Can you help?
« Reply #3 on: June 19, 2017, 04:44:28 PM »
Strangely enough, all the comparable coins at Zeno have been countermarked. But this one hasn't. Well, at the end of the week I will be able to measure the diameter.
-- Paul

Offline THCoins

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Re: Chaganian drachm (about 600 AD). Can you help?
« Reply #4 on: June 19, 2017, 06:17:59 PM »
Quote
Strangely enough, all the comparable coins at Zeno have been countermarked

But most of the countermarks are placed in the margins, so could just be clipped off.
Did you read the Unesco Silkroad project part on Tokharistan ? Not primarily coinage focussed, but i found it an interesting read.
Link to PDF

Offline Pellinore

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Re: Chaganian drachm (about 600 AD). Can you help?
« Reply #5 on: June 19, 2017, 08:02:55 PM »
The countermarks are always on the rim, but in my case, the rim is intact. And yes, I had seen it, a very interesting article about an elusive period and place.
-- Paul