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Tribal Coins of Ancient India

Devendra Handa (Author)

Tribal coins throw a food of light on the history, culture, religion, economy, polity, trade, commerce, technology, symbology, metrology, movements, etc. of the various tribes in ancient India. They thus enlighten us about various aspects of the life and culture of the people in ancient India. Numismatic discoveries made from time to time, interpretations and newer techniques of analysis have rendered earlier views in many cases as obsolete and worth revision. Some new types of Agreya coins published recently throw fresh light on the religious proclivities of the Agras. Coins discovered from Nohar show the presence of the Arjunayana tribe in northeastern Rajasthan. A critical analysis of the typology and provenance of Audumbara coins reveals that the monarchical issues of the Mitra rulers do not actually belong to the tribe, and that there was no ruler of the name of Mahadeva belonging to the Audumbara stock, thus rendering the old classification of their coins as outdated. The discovery of the hoards at Chakkar near Mandi and at Hat Koti and Jalog in Shimla district in Himachal Pradesh, stray finds of new types of Kuninda coins, their coin molds from regular excavations at Sanghol in Punjab and their coins from the site of the Syena-chiti (Eagle-shaped fire-altar) at Purola in Uttaranchal have thrown fresh light on their history, culture, religion, kingship, capital, mint-site and techniques of minting, trade and commerce, etc. The diminutive nature of Malava coins as evidence of poor economy stands challenged in the light of epigraphic evidence. The existence of the Kshudrakas and Savtriputras has been proved on the basis of their coins. The Vemakis were known only from Rudravarman’s silver and a dubious copper coin but the author has brought two of their new rulers-Bhavavarman and Sivaghosha-to light. The settlement of the Vrishnis at Sunet near Ludhiana is proved by a number of their seals, sealings and copper coins. Many fallacies about the Yaudheyas have also been corrected by a fresh study and analysis of their coins. This book, based on a study of various published and unpublished hoards and stray finds and coins in institutional and private collections is the first Indian Publication on the trilal coins containing the largest number of illustrations bringing to light many new coins and offering new interpretations.

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About the author

Devendra Handa

Shri Devendra Handa holds Post-Graduate degrees in Sanskrit, History and Education-all in First class and with top positions in the University. He obtained his Post-Graduate Diploma in Archaeology from the School of Archaeology (ASI, New Delhi) in 1964 with Credit (Distinction). He is the recipient of Maulana Azad and Archaeological Centenary Commemoration Medals, Sir Mortimer Wheeler Prize and various other awards. He is known to the indologists through more than three hundred research papers and the following books and monographs: 1 Osian: History, Archaeology, Art & Architecture, Delhi, 1984; 2 Studies in Indian Coins and Seals, Delhi, 1985; 3 Indological Studies: Essays in Memory of Shri S.P. Singhal, Delhi, 1987 (Ed.); 4 Ajaya-Sri: Recent Studies in Indology (Prof. Ajay Mitra Shastri Felicitation Volume), 2 Vols., Delhi, 1989 (Ed.); 5 Praci-Prabha: Perspectives in Indololgy (Essays in honour of Prof. B.N. Mukherjee), New Delhi, 1989 (Ed. Jointly with Prof. D.C. Bhattacharyya); 6 Ratna-Chandrika: Panorama of Oriental Studies (Shri R.C. Agrawala Festschrift), New Delhi, 1989 (Ed. Jointly with Prof. Ashvini Agrawal); 7 Heritage of Haryana: Buddhist Remains, Chandigarh, 1989; 8 Vishvambhara: Probings in Orientology (Prof. V.S. Pathak Festschrift), 2 Vols. New Delhi, 1995 (Ed. Jointly with Prof. Ajay Mitra Shastri and C.S. Gupta); 9 Numismatic Studies, Vols. 1-3 (1991-93), New Delhi (Ed.); 10 Oriental Numismatic Studies, Vols. 1-2 (1994 & 1996), Delhi (Ed.). He has attended numerous national and international conferences and delivered lectures in various institutions. In 1992, he got the Lowick Memorial Grant of the Royal Numismatic Society, London for studying the tribal coins of India. In 1993, he visited Sri Lanka on the invitation of the Sri Lanka Numismatic Society. He was honoured for his contributions to the science of numismatics at Calcutta in 1994. After a teaching career of more than thirty years, he finally retired from the Panjab University, Chandigarh in 1999. After his retirement from the Panjab University, Chandigarh, he was a Fellow at the Indian Institute of Advanced Study at Shimla (2000-2003) and Senior Fellow of the Ministry of Culture, GOPI, New Delhi (2003-2005). He presided over the 88th Annual Conference of the Numismatic Society of India at Nagpur in 2004 and Seminar on Coinage of the North West India at Chandigarh in 2005.

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Bibliographic information

Title Tribal Coins of Ancient India
Format Hardcover
Date published: 01.01.2007
Edition 1st ed.
Language: English
isbn 8173053170
length xxxii+290p., Figures; Plates; Tables; Maps; Bibliography; Index; 29cm.