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Research Coins: Feature Auction

 
650711
Sale: Triton VII, Lot: 711. Estimate $500. 
Closing Date: Monday, 12 January 2004. 
Sold For $800. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

INDIA, Bengal. Circa 2nd-3rd century AD. AV Dinar (6.53 gm). Imitating Kanishka I. King standing left before rudimentary altar / Goddess Ardoxsho standing right, holding cornucopiae; tamgha to right. Garbled legends both sides. Cf. MACW 4657; Mitchiner, Land of Water, pg. 21, class b/1. Good VF, weak strike. ($500)

In the early centuries AD the famous Silk Road trade route across Asia had a southern extension in the Indian Ocean, where trading craft from China called on ports at the mouth of the Ganges in modern Bangladesh. From Chandraketugarh and Tamrapliti, goods traveled upriver either to India proper or the Kushan lands to the north. The importance of this trade lead to the first striking of local gold coinage in Bengal; these being crude copies of dinars of the Kushan kings Kanishka I and Huvishka. In the late 2nd-early 3rd century a local king, Vira Jadamarah of Samatata struck other imitations, this time in his own name. By the early 4th century central India came under the control of the Guptas, and contact with the north was disrupted. At that point Gupta coinage replaced the Kushan imitative issues, which remained unknown until the 1970's, when the first pieces were identified.