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Research Coins: Feature Auction

Sale: CNG 61, Lot: 996. Estimate $300. 
Closing Date: Wednesday, 25 September 2002. 
Sold For $420. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

INDIA. Kushans. Anonymous, time of Vasudeva I. Circa 164-200 AD. Æ 20x23mm Rectangular Unit (8.46 gm). King standing facing, head left and holding trident / Miiro or Dionysos(?) standing facing, head left, holding patera at side; tamgha in left field. Göbl Kushan -; Donum Burns -. Unpublished and apparently unique. Near VF, heavy roughness. ($300)

The weight of this piece corresponds exactly to that of the rectangular Baktrian Æ Double Unit. No other Kushan bronzes are known on a rectangular flan, and this piece may easily represent an overstrike on a pre-existing and still circulating Baktrian coin. The deity on the reverse is somewhat unclear, but is certainly male. Although Dionysos does not occur in the pantheon of Greek deities depicted on Kushan coins, the patera hanging at the side of this god does suggest that it may be the first known occurence of this diety during the period. There may also be a correlation between the overtly Baktrian fabric of this coin and the popularity of Dionysos on several Baktrian coins.