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Kushan, Kushano-Sasanian, and Kidarite Coins: A Catalogue of Coins from the American Numismatic Society

David Jongeward (Author) Joe Cribb (Author) Peter Donovan (Author)

The Kushan Empire was a vast inland empire that stretched across Central and South Asia during the first to fourth centuries AD. The origins of Kushan dynasty continue to be debated, and precise dates, especially for the late Kushan kings, remain elusive, but the coinage reveals the Kushan dynasty as a major force in the cultural and political history of the ancient Silk Road.

Kushan coinage began c. AD 50 with issues of the first Kushan king, Kujula Kadphises(c. AD 50-90). The first Kushan coins were based on Greek, Scythian and Parthian coin designs already current in the territory of present day Afghanistan and Pakistan. Under Kujula Kadphises’ son Wima Takto (c. AD 91-113) and grandson Wima Kadphises (c. AD 113-127) the coinage system was gradually centralized to serve the entire Kushan empire, stretching from Uzbekistan and Tajikistan to northern India. Gold and copper denominations were established during the reign of Wima Kadphises which were maintained through the reigns of ten more kings until the demise of the Kushan empire in the mid-fourth century AD.

This catalogue presents all the Kushan coins in the American Numismatic Society, with selected illustrations, detailed descriptions and commentary. The production system of Kushan coinage is presented with major revisions of chronology and organization compared with previous publications. This presentation has been based on the latest coin-based research, including die studies and site find analysis. The coins are classified by ruler, metal, mint, production phase, denomination, type and variety. Introductory essays present the historical and cultural contexts of the kings and their coins. All the ANS gold coins and a selection of copper coins are illustrated. This catalogue also features two series of coins issued by the Kushano-Sasanian and the Kidarite Hun rulers of former Kushan territory because they followed and adapted the Kushan coinage system.

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About the author

Joe Cribb

Joe Cribb (born Brighton, Sussex, 30 October 1947) has worked as a curator in the British Museum’s Department of Coins and Medals since 1970, after graduating BA Honours in Latinj from the University of London. His work has been recognized by thje Royal Numismatic Society Silver Medal, 1996, and the Hirayama Institute of Silk Road Studies (Kamakura) Award, 1997. In 2003 he became Keeper of Coins and Medals. His areas of responsibility have covered all aspects of Asian monetary history. He curated the 1986 exhibition Money from Cowrie Shells to Credit Cards, and in 1997 lead the team which created the British Museum’s HSBC Money Gallery. His publications, numbering over one hundred and fifty, represent a wide range of interests. His major contributions on Asian money are Money in the Bank – an Illustrated Introduction to the Money Collection of The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation (1987); A Catalogue of Sycee in the British Museum, Chinese Silver Currency Ingots, c.1750-1933 (1992); Magic Coins of Java, Bali and the Malay Peninsula (1999). He has also co-authored four general books on coinage: Money from Cowrie Shells to Credit Cards (1986); Coin Atlas (1990); Money – A History (1997); The Chand Collection – Ancient Indian Coins (2003), and one on ancient Central Asian Art: Crossroads of Asia (1992). His picture book Eyewitness Guide – Money (1990 and 1999, second edition) has been published in numerous foreign language editions. In 2004 he was elected President of the Royal Numismatic Society, and served as its Secretary 198301994. He is also a member of the central committee of the Oriental Numismatic Society.

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Bibliographic information

Title Kushan, Kushano-Sasanian, and Kidarite Coins: A Catalogue of Coins from the American Numismatic Society
Format Hardcover
Date published: 16.12.2015
Edition 1st. ed.
Language: English
isbn 0897223349, 9780897223348
length 322p., Colour; B/W Figures; 79 Colour Plates; 1.2 x 8.5 x 11.8 inches