Author Topic: Abkar Dam - Allahabad IE31  (Read 270 times)

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Offline TTerrier

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Abkar Dam - Allahabad IE31
« on: May 06, 2020, 03:42:08 AM »
This is my first coin of this mint.  Since it is an ilahi type I thought there would be a month on the coin as well - at first glance it looks like Mihr.  I usually try to find a comparable example on Zeno to confirm what I have and stumbled on to an issue with how to read the reverse.

If you look at Zeno #135532 there is a discussion on what the reverse might read.  Apparently IE31 is a "frozen" date and it seems odd that the month would also be frozen in this manner.  The Zeno posters, after reviewing some of the older literature, come up with three possibilities (i) zarb  (ii) Mihr (iii) muhr.  They conclude that the reverse actually reads muhr-i-ilahabas or "stamp of Allahabad".  Apparently the references from 120 years ago had it right and the newer ones wrong!

KM#32.3   20.68gm   19.0mm  IE31 Allahabad  no month


Offline abhinumis

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Re: Abkar Dam - Allahabad IE31
« Reply #1 on: May 06, 2020, 05:59:30 AM »
Good coin.. However, Ilahi 31 is not a frozen year. Rarer dates of Ilahi 41 and 42 are known. However, these coins of Ilahabad are significant in many aspects.
1) This is the earliest date in Ilahi era attested on any coin of Akbar in any metal.
2) Prayag has always been a very holy place for Hindus due to the confluence of 3 rivers- Ganga, Yamuna and mythical Saraswati. Akbar founded a new city and citadel near the confluence and named it "Ilahabas" or 'Abode of Gods' . This name is only attested on this coin. The name was changed to 'Ilahabad' soon after. Allahabad or 'City of Allah' is a British corruption of the word Ilahabad. Another reason that the legend is 'Muhr-i-Ilahabas' is that there is no word 'Zarb' before Mintname as is the case mostly.
The interpretation as Muhr-i-Ilahabas is correct. This is not month Mihr.
« Last Edit: May 06, 2020, 06:12:23 AM by abhinumis »
Dr.Abhishek

Offline TTerrier

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Re: Abkar Dam - Allahabad IE31
« Reply #2 on: May 06, 2020, 06:15:49 AM »
Thank you Dr. Abhishek - interesting background on the founding of the city.  I am curious about when these coins were made - was there actually a 10 year gap where no dams were struck?  If so was it due to some historical event like the capture of the city by a rival?

Offline abhinumis

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Re: Abkar Dam - Allahabad IE31
« Reply #3 on: May 06, 2020, 06:23:30 AM »
Here is my coin of Ilahi 42. I have dam of Ilahi 41 and a rare half dam of Ilahi 41 as well.  There was no capture from rivals but remember in Akbar copper coins, some mints are transitional and minted copper coins as per requirement. There is no continuous year on year production in most mints.
Dr.Abhishek

Offline Figleaf

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Re: Abkar Dam - Allahabad IE31
« Reply #4 on: May 06, 2020, 08:56:29 AM »
TTerrier has a point, Abishek. Absent documented evidence, there is no way to know how accurate the date is. Even with dates 41 and 42 known, it is suspicious that 31 is the earliest Akbar date. IIRC, Indian numismatics knows examples of coins struck with a spurious date to commemorate conspicuous events, notably military victories.

Moreover, in modern Indian numismatics, there is the surprisingly similar case of the 1862 dated coins, a frozen date, followed by regularly dated 1875 and 1876 coins of the same type. It is good to discuss such issues. Someone at some time may stumble upon the evidence we need and we will have a little new insight in Indian history.

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

Offline abhinumis

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Re: Abkar Dam - Allahabad IE31
« Reply #5 on: May 06, 2020, 09:05:03 PM »
There have been several instances of mints becoming active after many years of inactive period. So having a ilahi 41 and 42 after ilahi 31 should not come as a surprise. The dates are clear enough and in no ways are they errors. Ilahi 31 is the most common date in Ilahabad, so there is no reason why the most most minted coins will be an error. The mint becoming active after 9-10 years of inactivity just goes on to prove my point about transitional mints being active when there was active requirements of copper coins like the area around the mint shows mughal activity. Btw, in 1597 (Ilahi 41), Akbar's youngest son Danyal was assigned to Ilahabad. So it should not come as a surprise that the mint shows renewed activities.
Dr.Abhishek