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Iran coins online. Find the best selection from the most respected coins dealers around the world. World Coins - IRAN: SH /0 () Re-punched date. World Coins - China, Qing Dynasty; Cash - no date - 50 Emperor IRAN: Gold one Pahlavi, SH (), during WW II, Legend type, SCARCE! B.U. Nevertheless, because throughout most of Persian history coins were made of For example, a papyrus document from Egypt dating from the 5th century B.C.E. The Chinese traveler Chen Cheng, who visited the Timurid court in
It has been suggested that lost wax bronze artifacts in the naturalistic style of the Dian culture of Yunnan, which included complex animal combat groups, were influenced by a migration of Saka peoples to the southwest of China, prior to the 1st century BCE Zhang Zengqi, pp.
The earliest objects of Iranian origin to be found in China up to the present time come from princely tombs in Shandong, Guanzhou, and Yunnan and are dateable to the late 2nd century BCE Laing,pp. These are almost identical, small lobed, lidded silver or bronze containers, related in style to lobed metal vessels of the Achaemenid empire and subsequently passed on to Seleucid and Parthian metalwork styles. Significantly, Chinese artisans added cast feet and tiny animals to the lids in an obvious attempt to make the vessels look less alien.
During the 2nd century BCE, the Former Han dynasty became more familiar with its western neighbors through the explorations of the intrepid Chinese ambassador Zhang Qian to locate the Yuezhi, who had fled west to avoid Xiongnu attacks, eventually settling in Bactria in the middle of the century. China wanted to rid Xinjiang of the Xiongnu in order to secure its borders and open trade routes to the West.
With the better horses and cavalry accouterments China also received another wave of Inner Asian influence in the decorative arts, particularly on horse trappings and military regalia. This animal has precedents in inlaid metalwork of the Warring States period, but its use in large-scale sculptural form is significant, and shows not only the stylistic influence of Western Asia via Achaemenid Persia and Central Asia, but also reflects its prestige as a royal guardian.
Lions are not native to China, but as fanciful supernatural creatures the Chinese adapted them into varied auspicious forms. During the Later Han Era Buddhism began to spread from the West to China, brought first by itinerant merchants by land and sea. Such an enterprise necessitated a thorough knowledge of Chinese. In the prior century China had lost much of its control over Xinjiang during the Wang Mang interregnum C.
E forcing much of the silk trade with the West to sea routes. At Kongwangshan near Lianyungang on the seacoast of northern Jiangsu is a large rocky hill covered with Buddhist scenes and images in low relief, together with representations of figures that look like Indo-Scythians Xinru Liu,pp. This site is dated to the 2nd century CE and includes separate reliefs, probably not all of the same date. It is possible that some date from the later 1st century, since the area was known in Chinese annals to have held the location where foreign Buddhists, merchants and monks, congregated.
The style of the carvings at Kongwangshan has been compared with that of rock-cut reliefs at Tang-e Sarvak in Parthian Elymais by Rhiepp. It is likely that Parthians, as well as Indo-Scythians, came to China by sea, especially during the 1st century CE, when the land routes through Xinjiang had again become dangerous. After the collapse of the Later Han Dynasty, China suffered devastation and fragmentation. In the meantime, many of the Saka had settled into oasis kingdoms in Xinjiang, notably, Kashgar, Yarkand, and Khotan, and Kucha where Buddhism and its hybrid art and culture thrived.
The conquering Xianbei Tuoba became particularly devoted to Buddhism, and the period of the Northern Wei Dynasty saw a renewed vitality in trade and Western cultural influences. Decorative motives of ultimate Greco-Iranian origin such as palmette and vine scrolls, volutes, pilasters, hexagonal patterns, pearl borders and fretwork designs received new interpretations in Northern Wei art Rawsonpp.
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Inthe Northern Wei emperor decreed that five large bronze statues of the Buddha be made and set up in memory of five of his predecessors. These no longer exist, but each of the first five cave temples created at Yungang contains a huge Buddha image thought to commemorate a Northern Wei emperor.
It is significant to note that, when the small, devoutly Buddhist state of Liang in the Gansu Corridor near Dunhuang was conquered by the Northern Wei inmany of its monks and artisans were transferred to the Wei capital. These migrants were seminal in transmitting the art and culture of Buddhist Xinjiang. A group of gilt-bronze and gilt silver luxury vessels, all bearing the decorative and figurative hallmarks of Greco-Iranian Hellenism, have been found at the Northern Wei capital at Datong and were probably imported from Bactria, then under Hephthalite domination Laing,pp.
The stylistic nuances differentiating them suggest that they were not the production of a single era, but an assortment of luxury metalwork vessels that adhered stylistically to permutations of Greco-Iranian tradition in Bactria from the Kushan through the Hephthalite periods. A gilt silver plate depicting a princely boar hunt, excavated from a tomb near Datong dated to CE, is close to early Sasanian royal hunting plates in style and technical aspects, but diverges enough to suggest a Bactrian origin dating from the era of the Kushano-Sasanian rule ca.
An astonishing gilt silver ewer of Iranian type with a relief frieze of figures seemingly taken from Greek mythology was found in a mid-6th century tomb in Ningxia province Marshak and Anazawa,pp. The site lies on the route north of the Tarim Basin in Xinjiang to China and most probably became connected with the Afghan-Sogdian region through trade during the 4th and 5th centuries CE.
Khotan was linguistically and probably ethnically Saka due to migrations of the 2nd century BCE from the Pamirs and was an important source of nephrite jade for the Chinese market. The complex ideology and iconography of Mahayana Buddhism did not come into full flower in China until the Tang Era, but there can be no doubt that China was influenced by the pictorial arts of Khotan, both Buddhist and non-Buddhist.
The most prominent conveyors of Iranian art and culture to China from the Han period through the Tang were the mercantile Sogdians, who took advantage of Chinese and Kushan control of the trade routes during the Western Han Era and continued trade by land and sea through the eighth century.
As they made their way through Xinjiang, some settled in the oasis states and some in western China, where they intermarried and were assimilated into the local culture Luo Feng,pp. At the western end of the trade routes Sasanian Iran exerted enormous influence on Sogdian art in spite of the hostilities between Iran and the Hephthalite empire, which included Sogdiana from the mid-5th to the mid-6th century.
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Under nominal Hephthalite rule the Sogdians expanded their trade with Northern Wei dynasty China, as noted above.
Western and Persian scholarly traditions differ as to which side should be considered the obverse and which the reverse. Persian numismatists generally designate the royal side as the obverse, and that designation has been adopted here. Silver coins of the new type were struck to the standard of. There were also quarter- half- double- and 6-dirham denominations. The 6-dirham coin came to be known as a silver dinar Plate v.
Gold coins were struck in the same types as the silver but not to a fixed weight standard. Like the contemporary Mamluk gold coinage of Egypt, these pieces were clearly intended to be weighed for each transaction, whereas the carefully standardized silver coins could be traded by count. There also developed an extensive copper currency, highly localized, with distinctive types and weight preferences at different mints.
Smith and Benin, p. Gold continued to be struck to random weights, the coin impression being a guarantee of purity, rather than a confirmation of weight.
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The older, heavier coins were probably exchanged at par for the lighter ones, which were given the same nominal value. The value of coined silver was thus artificially increased in inverse proportion to the reduction in weight, with the result that the nominal purchasing power of the available stock of silver was substantially increased.
In theory, such a devaluation should have worked, so long as the state remained willing to accept the light coins in payment of dues and so long as the faith of the trading community persisted.
The need to resort to this sort of devaluation time and again shows that it was at best a temporary expedient and that prices must have risen, in terms of the nominal currency, to restore the equilibrium between silver and other goods and services. Although it is presumed that with each devaluation the old coins were recalled and exchanged for new, the recalls were never complete. Hoards that are predominantly of one standard invariably also contain a complement of coins of older standards e.
The names and salaries of the staff of the Shiraz mint are also given by the same source Hinz,pp. Copper currency, as always, remained local. Although politically separate parts of a zone usually had different designs and inscriptions, all coins in that zone, regardless of the rulers named on them, were struck to the same weight standard. When a given ruler controlled sections of more than one zone, he struck different coins to the local standard for use in each zone.
Within each zone periodic devaluations were undertaken at intervals of from less than a year to about ten years, independently of the sequence in other zones. During this period units of account were employed to ensure that certain kinds of payments would be protected from periodic reductions in value, but the mechanisms for maintaining fixed payments in what had become an inflationary economy are unknown Smith,pp.Persian Dating Advice
Just how a devaluation was transmitted throughout a currency zone is also unknown. Once initiated by one ruler within a given zone, it rapidly spread to the entire zone, probably within a matter of weeks Album,pp.
Coin hoards of the period show that coins circulated widely within each zone, regardless of who issued them, but rarely traveled outside the zone. Each issuer must have been compelled to adopt each new devaluation, lest his coins be withdrawn and hoarded and he be left with only the lighter coins of other issuers. It was thus advisable for him to issue lighter coins himself. After his death the number of mints within Persia continued to increase, though growing anarchy in Anatolia led to a sharp reduction in the number of mints and in coin production there.
This decentralization was undoubtedly related to the nature of provincial political relations, in contradistinction to those of the contemporary Mamluk domain, where only six mints are known to have produced an extensive coinage in all three metals Balog, pp.
Mints were not evenly distributed but tended to be clustered in certain provinces. The reasons why mints were established in certain towns and not in others are obscure. They tended to be located in provincial and district administrative centers, perhaps in order to provide some income for local leaders in exchange for their loyalty, which makes sense in light of the tendency for the number of mints to increase in times of fragmented political authority.
There is further evidence for this hypothesis. Not only were distinctive types used to mark issues of the various currency zones, but a ruler would also often permit multiple types to circulate within his territories in a single zone.
Local leaders were apparently permitted to issue special coin types as a sign of their importance. The stability and persistence of the major currency zones during the turbulent interval after the fall of the Il-khanids implies that trade and commerce were not sharply affected by the political disintegration and constant warfare that characterized the period, but a decline is mirrored in the gradual deterioration in the technical aspects of the coinage.
Later Il-khanid coinage is among the most aesthetically appealing of all Islamic series, painstakingly manufactured from dies of high artistic standard, at least at the major mints. Except at the capital, Samarqand, and a few peripheral localities, all the old currencies were swept away and replaced with a standard denomination, the tanga—the word is of Sanskrit origin Gopal, p.
The coin designs were not made uniform, and local designs persisted, in many cases adaptations of prereform types to the larger module of the tanga Plate vi.
At the same time the design was standardized at most mints, though some local variation was still tolerated, particularly on the reverse Plate vi.
During the 15th century currency devaluation was replaced by a kind of tax on money, in the form of the countermark, a small design punched into existing coins. Although countermarking had been known in the Middle East since antiquity, it had died out in Persia during the early 14th century. The Chinese traveler Chen Cheng, who visited the Timurid court indescribed the countermarking of the coinage as a tax on money: Although there are no reports on how countermarking was promulgated and regulated, the net effect seems to have been identical to that of devaluation: The value of silver was artificially raised, so that the total purchasing power of the available stock was augmented in terms of some nominal unit of account.
The inflationary concomitant must have been similar, though, as in the 14th century, there is insufficient information on prices to determine what actually transpired.
The onerous fee for countermarking must have made such a measure highly unpopular and somewhat risky for any ruler who employed it as an extraordinary means of raising revenues. New countermarks were ordered frequently Plate vi. After the Safavid conquest of most of Persia later Timurid, Shaybanid, and Janid rulers continued striking coins on the Timurid pattern at their mints in eastern Khorasan and Transoxania Plate vi.
Scattered surviving examples suggest, however, a more extensive use of copper coins than has been suspected.
By the later 14th century rulers were only rarely cited on coppers; the royal inscription was replaced instead with a geometric or floral pattern, a short pious inscription, or a pictorial device. Nothing is known of the metrology or precise monetary function of these coppers.
In eastern Khorasan and Transoxania, however, copper circulated to the exclusion of silver coins in the 15th and 16th centuries.
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The coins reveal that a ruler was deemed legitimate through either inheritance or adoption Album, Sometimes even a recognized ruler might choose for political reasons to mint his coins in the name of another ruler Album,pp. In general, local or subordinate dynastic rulers did not place their own names on the coins, as they typically had done in pre-Mongol times; rather they struck coins bearing only the names of genuine, nominal, or adopted suzerains.
Other local rulers distinguished their coins visually by means of types, with distinctive ornamental borders, calligraphy, or arrangements of the legends. Together with literary and epigraphic sources, the coins thus provide a remarkable amount of information that can greatly enrich understanding of political developments, particularly in the 14th century cf.
Album, ; Smith, The coins, as contemporary witnesses, also allow modern scholars to assess divergent accounts in the chronicles, illuminating their biases and their relative accuracy. The Safavid period to the present. Safavid monetary standards were expressed in terms of the toman, a unit of account reckoned as 10, dinars of account.
Both gold and silver were struck in numerous denominations. There was no fixed relationship between gold and silver coins, which was also true in much of contemporary Europe.
This pattern reveals that the two regions of the nascent Safavid empire had not yet been integrated monetarily. The tendency for a single silver denomination, out of many that were struck simultaneously, to serve as the dominant unit of currency remained characteristic of Persian currency until the early 20th century. At first the change was rather subtle, and much of the Arabic was retained unaltered within a Persian syntactical framework. The innovation lasted for only one year. This and similar proclamations of humble piety graced the obverses of most subsequent Safavid coins.
The end of regular gold coinage occurred in the same decade. European visitors to Persia frequently noted the absence of indigenous gold coinage, the only commonly available gold being the Venetian ducat see, e.
These European and American coins, as well as oorts from Danzig and a variety of German thalers, were still commonly to be found in the antique shops of Tehran and other Persian cities in the s. The distribution of these mints varied with the territorial vicissitudes of the Safavid kingdom and with other factors that periodically resulted in the establishment of new mints in certain provinces.
How he smiles as he enters a tavern attended by a Persian girl!
Western caucasian girls ran these wine stores as Li Bai wrote: Yuan Chen and Bo Juyi wrote poems on these Sogdian girls. The song mentions sashes around her body twirling as she danced. Giant balls were used to dance on by the Sogdian whirling girls and dancers from Tashkent. The twirling girls from Sogdia danced on rolling balls and wore boots made otu of deerskin which were colored red, green pants, and crimson robes and they were sent to the Emperor Xuanzong.
Western singing and dancing girls filled Chang'an taverns.
The Kang kingdom brought the "whirling barbarian" huxuan dance to China. It involved spinning while dressed in shoes of red leather and white pants by a woman. Bai Juyi wrote the "Huxuan Dance Girl" poem.