Author Topic: The coins of Porbandar - the complete series.  (Read 773 times)

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Offline asm

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The coins of Porbandar - the complete series.
« on: April 14, 2020, 05:00:15 PM »
The Royal house 0f PORBANDAR belongs to the Jethwa clan of Rajputs, the earliest settlers of Western India and claim descent from Pawan, ancestor of Hanuman. The dynasty appears to have arrived in Western India over 2,000 years ago. They established their capital at Mayurpuri (now Morvi) named after a former ruler Raja Mayurdhwaj Sinhji. The family moved in 1193 to Nagnah and later  they established their capital at Ghumli, under the leadership of Sal Kumar, 18th head of the tribe. The ruling clan, however, take their name from a later chief named Jethaji.

Fourteenth in descent from Jethaji was Sangaji, who received the hereditary title of Rana, in reward for defeating a large Waghela army which had been sent against Morvi. Ghumli, which had remained the capital for over a century was besieged and reduced to rubble by a large Sindhi army in 1313. Rana Bhan Jethwa escaped to Ranpur, where he established his new capital and set about founding a new principality. The capital moved to Chhaya in 1574 and finally was transferred to Porbandar in 1785.

The state came under the protection of the BEIC during the early years of the nineteenth century. Contests for power between the rulers and their heirs and frequent episodes of financial mismanagement resulted in interventions by the British authorities in 1811, 1869 and 1886. Nevertheless, the reigns of Maharaj Ranas Bhavsinhji and Natwarsinhji restored good government to the state. Progress was rapid, with a steady improvement in the state revenues and finances enabling increased expenditure in education and health, judicial, administrative, police and military reform, and investment in improving the infrastructure. The efforts of Bhavsinhji being rewarded with the restoration to the status of a first class state, with full judicial and administrative jurisdiction, which had been lost under his predecessor, Vikramatji.

Maharaj Rana Natwarsinhji was able to advance the state much further, given the inheritance he received from his able father. He received the title of Maharaja after the conclusion of the Second World War. An able administrator, soldier, author, musician, painter and sportsman, he captained the first Indian cricket team to tour England in 1932. He signed the instrument of accession to the Dominion of India and later merged his state together with other rulers to form the United State of Kathiawad, early in 1948. Despite two marriages, he failed to sire any sons and adopted and able though distant cousin as his son and successor. Udaybhansinhji, though full of promise and successful in several fields, died during his lifetime. Consequently, after the death of Maharaja Natwarsinhji in 1979, the succession and headship of the clan is uncertain.

Porbandar, one of the few Princely states during the British Raj that had a coastline, covered an area of 1,663 square kilometres (642 sq mi), encompassing 106 villages and a population, in 1921, of over 1,00,000 people and a revenue of Rs. 21,00,000/-.

The list of Ranas of Porbandar:
    1699 – 1709 Bhanji Sartanji (d. 1709)
    1709 – 1728 Khimoji III (d. 1728)
    1728 – 1757 Vikmatji III Khimoji (d. 1757)
    1757 – 22 April 1813 Sartanji II Vikmatji (d. 1813)
    1804 – 1812 Haloji Sultanji -Regent (d. 1812)
    22 Apr 1813 – 20 June 1831 Khimojiraj Haloji (d. 1831)
    20 Jun 1831 – 21 April 1900 Vikramatji Khimojiraj (b. 1819 – d. 1900)
    20 Jun 1831 – 1841 Rani Rupaliba Kunverba (f) -Regent (d. 1841)
    21 Apr 1900 – 10 December 1908 Bhavsinhji Madhavsinhji (b. 1867 – d. 1908)
    10 Dec 1908 – 1 January 1918 Natwarsinhji Bhavsinhji (b. 1901 – d. 1979) On 1st January 1918 Natwarsinhji  was proclaimed Maharaja Rana Sahib.
    10 Dec 1908 – 1909 Regents
        – J.K. Condon (to 1909)
        – Rao Bahadur A.S. Tambe (1909–1910)
        – Wala Vajsur Valera (1909–1913) (b. 1873 – d. 19..)
        – F. de B. Hancock (1913–1916) (d. 1916)
        – Edward O'Brien (Apr 1916 – 1918) (b. 1872 – d. 1965)

List of Administrators for Porbandar appointed by the British administration:
    1886 – 1890 Frederick Styles Philpin Lely (b. 1846 – d. 1934)
    1890 – 1894 Shankar Pandurang Pandit
    Mar 1894 – 1896 William Thomson Morison
    Nov 1897 – 1900 Francis William Snell

The Map (of a part) of the Bombay Presidency showing the location of Porbandar. 
« Last Edit: April 14, 2020, 05:51:29 PM by asm »
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Offline asm

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Re: The coins of Porbandar - the complete series.
« Reply #1 on: April 14, 2020, 05:49:55 PM »
THE COINAGE OF PORBANDAR:

As per the information mentioned in the Gazetteer, Porbandar had been minting coins almost from the same time as Navanagar and other states in the area (from the time of Muzzaffar III). These coins were the Kori (Silver) and its fractions - the ¼ Kori & ½ Kori. For the copper, there were the Dokda with a Dhingla (1½ Dokda) and the fractions, Trambiyo & ½ Trambiyo. As mentioned in the Gazetteer, the rate of exchange (around 1884 AD) was 32 Dokdas to a Kori and a Imperial Rupee was exchanged for 3 Dokdas. The exchange rates were flexible and changed with the fluctuation in price of the metals. The coins, called the 'Ranashahi Koris' because they showed the Nagari words Shri Rana were current only in the state. Since the coins were minted over a long period of time, small variation in the engraving of legends is seen. I have not seen or heard of any issue of Porbandar in Gold.

I reproduce herewith the images of all the mentioned coins from my own collection. Obverse & Reverse have the same legends as those found on the coins of Muzzaffar Shah III of the Gujarat Sultans with the obverse showing the word श्री राणा (Shri Rana in Nagari) at the bottom.
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Offline asm

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Re: The coins of Porbandar - the complete series.
« Reply #2 on: April 14, 2020, 05:57:37 PM »
KORI - ¼ Kori, ½ Kori & Kori

Obverse & Reverse have the same legends as those found on the coins of Muzzaffar Shah III of the Gujarat Sultans with the obverse showing the word श्री राणा (Shri Rana in Nagari) at the bottom.

¼ Kori - KM Ref: C#36 - Weight -1.26 g - Extremely Scarce to rare.
½ Kori - KM Ref: C#37 - Weight -2.38 g - Extremely Scarce
    Kori - KM Ref: C#38 - Weight -4.98 g - Common
« Last Edit: April 15, 2020, 03:28:11 PM by asm »
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Offline Figleaf

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Re: The coins of Porbandar - the complete series.
« Reply #3 on: April 14, 2020, 09:29:05 PM »
An impressive series, asm. I realise how very difficult it is to find fractional silver, let alone that of a state whose coinage is scarce. Thank you for posting them here. Would you mind posting the kori also, for reference?

I wonder what the relation between Muzzaffar Shah III of the Gujarat and the ranas of Porbandar was, especially if the coins were valid only in Porbandar. If imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, there must have been a reason to make the coins so alike.

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

Offline asm

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Re: The coins of Porbandar - the complete series.
« Reply #4 on: April 15, 2020, 05:47:39 AM »
An impressive series, asm.
It is a simple, short but an impressive series, a design which did not change much for the almost 300 years that they were coined.

Would you mind posting the kori also, for reference?
Peter
Peter, I will. I could not find the image of my coins - may be I had not photographed them, since they are relatively common. However the coppers too are missing. I will post them all here by the end of the day.

I wonder what the relation between Muzzaffar Shah III of the Gujarat and the ranas of Porbandar was, especially if the coins were valid only in Porbandar. If imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, there must have been a reason to make the coins so alike.
Coins of all states in the Kathiawad (now Saurashtra) peninsula and Kutch were modeled on the coins of Muzzaffar Shah III. This appears to be because it was Muzzaffar III that gave permission to some of these chiefs to mint their own coins. May be the permission was granted to all chiefs (Kutch, Navanagar, Porbandar & Junagadh) but I have no confirmation about that - records are available only for two of them.

I realise how very difficult it is to find fractional silver, let alone that of a state whose coinage is scarce
Yes, it is indeed very difficult to find the fractions. The general minting may have been fairly low since the state was a small one (covering 86 villages and a population of barely 72,000 in 1872, (one can guess what it would have been a 100 years before then) and the survival rate for fractions, in general, is lower than for the full. This could be because of two reasons. First - more circulation as these would be more needed for daily purchases and second - higher melting rate for fractions.

Amit
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Offline asm

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Re: The coins of Porbandar - the complete series.
« Reply #5 on: April 15, 2020, 09:29:06 AM »
COPPER COINS - ½ Trambiyo, Trambiyo, Dokdo & Dhinglo.

The basic unit is the Dokdo. Trambiyo is ½ Dokda and ½ Trambiyo is ¼ Dokdo. A Dhinglo is 1½ Dokdo.

Obverse & Reverse have the same legends as those found on the coins of Muzzaffar Shah III of the Gujarat Sultans with the obverse showing the word श्री राणा (Shri Rana in Nagari) at the bottom.

DenominationKMWt. (gr)Rarity
¼ Dokdo or ½ TrambiyoC#30
1.86
Extremely Scarce to rare
½ Dokdo or TrambiyoC#31
3.71
Scarce
DokdoC#32
7.63
Common
1½ Dokdo or DhingloC#33
11.20
Extremely Scarce to rare
« Last Edit: April 15, 2020, 03:32:51 PM by Figleaf »
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Offline asm

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Re: The coins of Porbandar - the complete series.
« Reply #6 on: April 15, 2020, 03:30:53 PM »
With this, I have listed all known types of coins of Porbandar and all the coins are from my personal collection. Hope you enjoy the same.

Amit
"It Is Better To Light A Candle Than To Curse The Darkness"

Offline Figleaf

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Re: The coins of Porbandar - the complete series.
« Reply #7 on: April 15, 2020, 03:39:30 PM »
Dazzling pictures, Amit. Thank you.

 :perfect: :rock:
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

Offline drnsreedhar

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Re: The coins of Porbandar - the complete series.
« Reply #8 on: April 16, 2020, 08:12:49 PM »
Great collection of coins Amit. Very good pictures also. I have something to learn from you on Porbandar coins. Shall post them soon. Thanks.
Dr.Sreedhar

Offline asm

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Re: The coins of Porbandar - the complete series.
« Reply #9 on: April 17, 2020, 03:33:11 AM »
I have something to learn from you on Porbandar coins. Shall post them soon.
Look forward to it.

Amit
"It Is Better To Light A Candle Than To Curse The Darkness"

Offline asm

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Re: The coins of Porbandar - the complete series.
« Reply #10 on: May 02, 2020, 03:32:30 PM »
With this, I have listed all known types of coins of Porbandar and all the coins are from my personal collection. Hope you enjoy the same.
All coins in a single frame.

Amit
"It Is Better To Light A Candle Than To Curse The Darkness"

Offline bububoy

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Re: The coins of Porbandar - the complete series.
« Reply #11 on: July 10, 2020, 10:55:33 AM »
wow ! nice coins, the design on the reverse look similar to the coins issued from navanagar.

mahe

Offline asm

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Re: The coins of Porbandar - the complete series.
« Reply #12 on: July 11, 2020, 04:00:59 AM »
The coins of Kutch, early coins of Junagadh, Porbandar and Navanagar are all similar - they use the Muzzaffar Shah legend. It is the nagari legends that separate the coins.

Amit
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Offline drnsreedhar

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Re: The coins of Porbandar - the complete series.
« Reply #13 on: July 11, 2020, 08:45:52 AM »
Yes. That is what I wanted to know Amit. Even after Mughals holding that land for long, ALL these IPS held on to a common style from the far back  times. But some IPS nearby stood differently. Is there something like  a common ancestral connection between them leading back to the Muzaffiri lineage that others did not possess?
Dr.Sreedhar

Offline bububoy

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Re: The coins of Porbandar - the complete series.
« Reply #14 on: July 11, 2020, 03:58:54 PM »
thanks amit for this bit of information, i was unaware of this !
I have classified all of my coins with those patterns as navanagar, i will now need to take a closer look for the nagari script.

regards,

mahe

The coins of Kutch, early coins of Junagadh, Porbandar and Navanagar are all similar - they use the Muzzaffar Shah legend. It is the nagari legends that separate the coins.

Amit