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III.-Notes on Indian Numismatics,
By R. D. Banerji, M.A.
1.-SAMUDRA GUPTA-SPEARMAN TYPE.
Coins of this type of the gold coinage of Samudragupta [Plate 1, No. 1] have been found in large numbers all over Northern India, but so far very few coins have been found in Bengal proper. The recorded finds of Imperial Gupta coins in Bengal do not include a specimen of this type. A coin of this type I found in the possession of Lord Carmichael, late Governor of Bengal. It was found some years ago while a tank was being excavated at Chakdighi in the Burdwan District. The land in which the coin was found belongs to Raja Mani Lal Singh Roy of Chakdighi who presented it to Lord Carmichael. I am indebted to Lord Carmichael för permission to publish this coin. The specimen is remarkable for the exceptional purity of its metal. It weighs 117 grs. and is a very well preserved specimen of the type of B. M. C. Allan, page 1, No. 1 (standard type).
Rai Radhakrishna Jalan Bahadur, Banker and Reis of Patna, possesses a coin cabinet which is exceptionally rich in Gupta coins. He possesses a specimen of that king of doubtful identity the only known specimen of whose coinage is in the cabinet of the Indian Museum, Calcutta. The Patna coin is a duplicate of the specimen described by Mr. V. A. Smith, but on the other hand it is a much better specimen, the legends on which are clearly legible. The name under the right armpit is clearly
IV. A. Smith : Catalogue of Coins in the Indian Museum, Calcutta, Vol. I, p. 120, No. 1, Pl. XVI, No. 11,
Yaša or Yaso. Possibly the full name was Yaśogupta. The legend on the reverse is “Narendra Vinata " as I have stated in my previous note on the subject. The metal is very impure gold.
III.-AN INSCRIBED PURI-KUSHAN COIN.
Large numbers of copper coins struck in imitation of the copper coins of the Great Kushans have been discovered in Orissa and Ganjam. They are known as Puri-knshāns. Professor Rapson in his " Indian Coins” states “they bear no inscriptions; but their types are evidently borrowed from those of the bronze Kuşana Coins of the time of Kapişka”: The same authority informs us that" in the case of the chief recorded discovery of these coins in the Pari District, they were found in company with bronze Kuşana coins struck in the ordinary manner". It has been suggested by the same authority that they were in circulation along with the original Kuşana bronze coinage from which they have been copied. Professor Rapson concludes his short description of this class of coinage by stating that " in either case they probably belong to that part of the Kuşana period which lies between the reign of Kanişka and the end”: Professor Rapson allots these coins to the first three centuries of the Christian era but Mr. V. A. Smith in his Catalogue of Coins in the Indian Museum, Calcutta, states that these coins were issued by the (?) kings of Kalinga (Puri and Ganjam) (?) of fourth and fifth century A.D. So far as I know, no other Numismatist has expressed his opinion about the probable date of this class of coinage. In 1917 His Honour Sir Edward Gait sent seven of these coins to me for examination. One of these coins though belonging to this
· [Probably Fas'odharman.-K. P.J.] • Annual Report of the Archæological Survey of India, 1913-14, 260, pl. LXIX. 3 Indian Coins, page 13. * Ibid.
Ibid, p. 14.
• Catalogue of Coins in the Indian Museum, Calcatta, Vol. I, pages 64-65 and 92 93.
? [See note in this Journal by the Hon'ble Mr. Walob.-K. P. J.]
particular class of coinage differed considerably in one respect. On this coin we have a human figure and a crescent on one side only. The reverse has three cones ranged in a line in the upper half of the circle and an inscription consisting of two syllables in the lower. This inscription is the most important part of this find which ought to be put on record. The inscription is
Tanka!". It provides us with a datum which was wanting so long from which the correct date of this class of coins can be deduced. In this inscription the lower limb of ka is still with. out the acute angle which is the characteristic of this letter in the seventh century. This later form of ka appears for the first time in North-Eastern India in the Bodh Gaya inscription of Mahānāman (G.E. 269, 588 A.D.) and the Aphsand inscription of Adityasena (H.E. 63, 672 A.D.)? The alphabet of the Bodb. Gaya inscription appears to be rather too late for the sixth century and therefore that of the Aphsand inscription may be taken to be a fixed point. It may safely be asserted now that the Puri-Kushan coins were issued some time before the middle of the seventh century A.D. ; possibly in the sixth century. A detailed palæographical examination would be out of place here but I am sure that the last-named date will not be found very wide of the mark. The word Tankı means "a stamped coin' or a weight of four mashas.
IV.-A MORAR OF ALAUDDIN MUHAMMAD SHAH RESTRUCK
The collection in the possession of Rai Bahadur Radhakrishna Jalan of Patna contains some unique coins. One of these is a muhar of Alauddin Muhammad Shah of the Khilji dynasty of Delhi (H. N. Wright, I.M.C., II, page 38, No. 191). The legend on the obverse is complete and quite clear. But instead of being round in shape, the coin is octagonal. So far as our knowledge goes octagonal coins were issued only by the
* Fleet: Gupta Indoriptions, p. 274. ' Ibid., p. 200.