Issuu on Google+

A CATALOG OF MODERN Coins of Afghanistan

Second Edition

By Hakim Hamidi Masoud Hamidi

C o p y r i g h t © 2 0 1 2 , P e r s i c G a l l e r y, I n c . A l l r i g h t s r e s e r v e d . P e r s i c G a l l e r y P. O . B o x 1 3 0 3 7 2 - B o s t o n - M A 0 2 11 3 • w w w. p e r s i c g a l l e r y. c o m


Table of Contents Introduction

1

Historical Outline

2

Mintage and Coinage

4

Inscriptions, Eras and Weights

6

List of Abbreviations

7

Genealogical Table

8

!

C o p y r i g h t © 2 0 1 2 , P e r s i c G a l l e r y, I n c . A l l r i g h t s r e s e r v e d . P e r s i c G a l l e r y - P. O . B o x 1 3 0 3 7 2 - B o s t o n - M A 0 2 11 3 • w w w. p e r s i c g a l l e r y. c o m


Introduction We're pleased to announce the re-publication of Catalog of Modern Coins of Afghanistan, originally written by late Mr. Hakim Hamidi in 1967. This catalog covers a period of approximately 76 years of Modern coins of Afghanistan, starting with the reign of Abdul Rahman Khan through the last Afghan monarch, Muhammad Zahir Shah. In order to convey a full understanding of this study, first an attempt is made to present a brief historical sketch of this period; then it’s followed by by description of coinage system and mints, inscriptions, eras, measurements, and weights. In this edition, we've followed the same format as the original catalog. Additionally, we've made every efforts to include all variation types with complete attributes and the corresponding photos. The attributes and photo scans are compiled form Mr. Hamidi's collection. During the 1st phase, the catalog will be published in six series and will be available on our website at no charge. Eventually, the complete series will be published in book format for resale on our website.

C o p y r i g h t © 2 0 1 2 , P e r s i c G a l l e r y, I n c . A l l r i g h t s r e s e r v e d . P e r s i c G a l l e r y - P. O . B o x 1 3 0 3 7 2 - B o s t o n - M A 0 2 11 3 • w w w. p e r s i c g a l l e r y. c o m

1


Historical Outline1 In the modern history of Afghanistan, the year HQ 1297 is a year of turmoil. When on July 21, 1880 (HQ 1297), Amir Abdul Rahman succeeded to the throne, the internal and foreign affairs of the state were in chaos. Internally, the country was not unified and feudalism was the governing factor. In that year, Amir Yacub Khan resigned and the British attempted to take authority in Kabul. Since the authority of the central government had collapsed, a number of separate rulers minted coins in their own name- Sher Ali, son of Khohandel in Kandahar; Wali Khan and Mohammad Jan Khan Wardek in Kabul; and Sardar Ayub Khan, son of Amir Sher Ali Khan, in Herat. Amir Abdul Rahman was thoroughly autocratic, absolute, and supreme; however, at that time he was the ruler needed in Afghanistan. He stopped the rebellion of the Mangal tribe, subjugated by the Hazaras, and in celebration of both victories, issued commemorative silver medals. In 1886 (HQ 1304) Mohammad Ishak Khan, his cousin, issued coinage in his own name and claimed the Amir’s throne. The Amir heard of this, sent out his army and immediately defeated Ishak Khan. Finally, Amir subdued Kaferistan (Land of Infidels) renamed it Nuristan (Land of Light), and converted the inhabitants to Islam. Thus, he gave the country complete unity. Externally, the British government, while accepting the Amir’s suzerainty, demanded that Kandahar be annexed to Baluchistan. The Amir rejected this demand kept the door of Afghanistan completely closed to foreign

intrigue, intervention, and influence.

This isolationist policy, however, effectively postponed the economic progress of Afghanistan. Although intensely mistrustful of the British, Amir Abdul Rahman asked them for advisors to establish a mint attached to a gun factory call the Masheenkhana. In 1890A.D. Amir Abdul Rahman struck the first machine made coin in Afghanistan, the Rupee of 1308. After 21 notable years of reign, he died in 1901 at Baghi-Bala, his summer palace near Kabul. Amir Abdul Rahman left a unified country to his son, Prince Habibullah. In contrast to the dominant and absolute reign of his father, Amir Habibullah was a sympathetic and a devoted ruler. He wisely concentrated his efforts on the internal reform and development of his country. In his reign , the first modern school, “Habibia High School”, was established, and the production of coins was extended. Roads and modern buildings were built and the first electric plant was installed in Jabul Seraj. At this time, the Afghan newspaper, Seraj Ul-Akbar, was very active under the direction of Mahmood Tarzi, the famous Afghan statesman and journalist. In this paper, Tarzi thundered against the claim of “de facto protection” of Afghanistan by the British government. In many ways the Afghan nation was influenced, both politically and socially, by his writings. Under his influence, Amir Habibullah, towards the end of his reign, demanded the complete

1

Excerpts from “A Catalog of Modern Coins of Afghanistan” by H.Hamidi C o p y r i g h t © 2 0 1 2 , P e r s i c G a l l e r y, I n c . A l l r i g h t s r e s e r v e d . P e r s i c G a l l e r y - P. O . B o x 1 3 0 3 7 2 - B o s t o n - M A 0 2 11 3 • w w w. p e r s i c g a l l e r y. c o m

2


independence of Afghanistan, but the Afghan demand was temporarily shelved by the British during the First World War. Unfortunately, in 1919 Amir Habibullah was assassinated before his desires for complete independence were fulfilled. After the death of Amir Habibullah his son, Prince Amanullah, proclaimed himself Amir of Kabul. Although, the people of Jalalabad had selected Nasrullah Khan, his uncle, as Amir, Amanullah finally established himself as the ruler. His first and foremost program was to obtain complete independence of Afghanistan. Not only did the British government rejected this proposal, but they refused to recognize him as Amir. Amanullah was suspicious and distrustful of the British government, and their non-recognition of his position provided an initial step towards the Third Angelo-Afghan War. On May 6, 1916, the British declared war on Afghanistan. The Afghan army moved from three direction towards British India. Finally, General Nadir Khan defeated a British army at Thal. The war ended in a victory for independent Afghanistan. When complete independence was attained, King Amanullah turned to internal reform. He reduced nepotism in the government and established a better oversight of civil servants. He sent students to Turkey, Germany, and France. He also permitted the French Archaeological Mission to begin exploration and excavation work in Afghanistan. This mission under Mr. Foucher, discovered the Hadda and Bagram sites. The nationalistic and devoted King had many good plans for his country. Unfortunately, some of his programs and reforms were basically ahead of his time. He was also beset by prolonged political troubles and some tribes, misunderstanding his social reforms, revolted. In 1919 A.D (H.S 1307) he was forced to abdicate and leave his country. The internal civil war which overthrew Amanullah was organized by Habibullah, known as Bachi-Saqow (son of water carrier), who controlled Kabul for nine months. This uneducated, self-made ruler restamped King Amanullah’s paper currency and minted coins. He closed schools, put a large number of illiterate and uncouth civil servants in government offices, and terrorized the citizens of Kabul and other cities. As soon as Nadir Khan, the hero of the Third Anglo-Afghan War, heard of these internal troubles, he left France, where he was in retirement, and returned to Afghanistan. A man of great ability and inspiration, he quickly defeated Bachi-Saqow, stopped the civil war, and restored order to the nation. Nadir Khan was then elected King of Afghanistan with the name and title of King Mohammad Nadir Shah Ghazi. He was a strong and great administrator who at once revived law and order throughout the nation. He reopened the schools and embassies and drafted a new constitution which was accepted by the Grand National Council in 1930. Mohammad Nadir Shah was assassinated in 1933 (H.S 1312), after a successful reign. His son Prince Mohammad Zahir, who succeeded him, proved to be a just and able king. In World War II, he preserved his country’s neutrality and prepared Afghanistan for a complete reorganization. The First Five Year Plan was adopted for C o p y r i g h t © 2 0 1 2 , P e r s i c G a l l e r y, I n c . A l l r i g h t s r e s e r v e d . P e r s i c G a l l e r y - P. O . B o x 1 3 0 3 7 2 - B o s t o n - M A 0 2 11 3 • w w w. p e r s i c g a l l e r y. c o m

3


the period 1956-61. Foreign loans and grants were obtained for the operation of the plan. In this period, the women of Afghanistan left their traditional seclusion and took part in the affairs of the nation. In 1964 a new constitution was adopted, giving the country a modern democratic regime. During the Second Five Year Plan (1961-1966), taxation was made more efficient and the infrastructure was further developed. Between 1969 and 1973, instability ruled Afghan politics. The parliament was lethargic and deadlocked. Public dissatisfaction over the unstable government prompted growing political polarization as both the left and the right began to attract more members. Still personally popular, the king nevertheless came under increasing criticism for not supporting his own prime ministers. It was in this atmosphere of internal discontent and polarization and external shakiness that Daoud implemented the coup d'état he had been planning for a year in response to the "anarchy and the anti-national attitude of the regime." While the king was out of the country for medical treatment, Daoud and a small military group seized power in an almost bloodless coup. After the 1973 coup, Zahir shah relinquished his claim to the thrown and spent life with his family in Italy. On April 18, 2002 former Afghan king Zahir Shah returned to Kabul after 29 years in exile. Overjoyed at his return, delegations from all over Afghanistan flooded to the airport to greet him. Although the 87-year old former monarch returned as an ordinary citizen, his arrival was seen as a force for unification, as he is seen as symbol of better times in pre-war Afghanistan.

Mintage and Coinage2 In 1890, the first modern mint was established. Previously, dies were cut and coins were struck by hand. Production of hand-made coins was laborious procedure. Although the coins were designed and produced by skilled artisans, the pieces of metal used were not always of the same size or shape. In the reign of Abdul Rahman Khan, hammered coins were struck in Kabul, Kandahar, and Herat. The last hand-made silver in circulation in Heart was in 1888 AD (HQ 1306; HS 1267), in Kandahar was in 1889 AD (HQ 1307); and in Kabul was in 1890 AD (HQ 1308). When the government mint was established in 1890, the other mints were closed, and with the exception of the Anonymous Coinage, all coins were then manufactured in the Kabul mint. The mint was placed under the direction of the Masheenkhana, the general manufacturing plant for civilian and military equipment. Three large machines, designed to convert metal into coins, were purchased from A.

2

Excerpts from “A Catalog of Modern Coins of Afghanistan” by H.Hamidi C o p y r i g h t © 2 0 1 2 , P e r s i c G a l l e r y, I n c . A l l r i g h t s r e s e r v e d . P e r s i c G a l l e r y - P. O . B o x 1 3 0 3 7 2 - B o s t o n - M A 0 2 11 3 • w w w. p e r s i c g a l l e r y. c o m

4


Slater Savill & Company. The mint embarked on production with silver Rupee and Qiran. Total production for the first year was approximately 10 million pcs. In the following year, not only was the total production of coins increased, but, in addition the silver coins, Paisa, Shahi, and Tilla were minted. Amir Abdul Rahman’s coinage became the basis for future coins. For example, the design of one Rupee was followed closely by Amir Habibullah, Bachi-Saqow, and King Amanullah. Similarly, the coins of Amir Abdul Rahman were beautifully designed. The large diameter of five Rupee (45mm); the small size of Senar (13mm); and the ornamented brass one-Shahi with a 3-1/2mm wide flan were splendid and unmatched coins. Since one Shahi and two Shahi were no longer circulated as a going currency, and since the demand for brass was very high, most of them have been melted. (Today, this coin is very extremely rare). During Abdul Rahman’s reign, two gold variations, 5 Rupee, 1 Rupee, 1/2 Rupee, Abbasi, Senar, and Paisa in various styles and dates were struck. During the reign of Amir Habibullah (Seraj) 1901-1919 AD (HQ 1319-1337 and HS 1280-1298), gold, silver, copper, and brass coins, such as five Kabuli Rupee, one Rupee, Qiran, Abbasi, Senar, and Paisa were manufactured. The design and size of the coins were similar to those of Amir Abdul Rahman, Nevertheless, one and two Shahi were omitted. The smaller size coins, such as Senar and Abbasi were issued in greater quantity than of the similar coins of Amir Abdul Rahman. However, today these coins are scarce. People used them for naments and buttons. Finally, on the one Rupee of this period, for the first time, the name of Afghanistan appeared on the coins. In this period, six additional pieces of equipment ere imported and installed. Hence, the production of coins were subsequently augmented. In addition to the other coins, 160,000 pieces of Qiran were coined per day. King Amanullah ruled from 1919-1928 AD (HQ 1337-1347 and HS 1297-1307). In this period, a number of changes occurred. The designs of the emblem ere improved and the inscriptions were distinctly marked. The coinage was refined and the the metric system of weight was introduced. The five Kabuli Rupee was abandoned. Copper and Brass were substituted for silver, the Senar, and Abbasi. The 2-1/2 Afghani and 2-1/2 Rupees were newly created. The 20 silver Pul and the 1298 and 1299 Suls are exceptional coins. Since these two coins contained silver and were of relatively small denomination, they were melted by silversmiths. During King Amanullah reign, eleven variations of gold coins were struck. Also, 2-1/2, one, and 1/2 Rupees; 2-1/2, 1, and 1/2 Afghanis; 20 Pul; one Abbasi; one, two and three Shahies; 10, 5, 2 Pul; and one Paisa were coined in various years and variations.

C o p y r i g h t © 2 0 1 2 , P e r s i c G a l l e r y, I n c . A l l r i g h t s r e s e r v e d . P e r s i c G a l l e r y - P. O . B o x 1 3 0 3 7 2 - B o s t o n - M A 0 2 11 3 • w w w. p e r s i c g a l l e r y. c o m

5


Inscriptions, Eras and Weights Most of the modern Afghan coins are characterized with the emblem of Afghanistan-the “Mihrab” and “Monber”. The “Mihrab” is the arched altar of the mosque which is faced towards Qibla (Mecca); and the “Mobber” is the elevated reading desk or pulpit. Often, the emblem is encircled in a sunburst and decorated with flags on each side. Under the mosque, crossed cannon, swords and rifles frequently appear. Generally, on the observe side, the name and title of the king, the date and a floral display or wreath are exhibited. Initially, the inscriptions were rendered in Dari, and eventually, Pashto was also used. Numerous styles of Arabic and Dari chirography are impressed on these coins. SOme of the manuscripts which are easily recognized are Suls, Naste-leqq, Naskh, Toughrai-Rume, and Toughrai-Kharasonee. In the reign of Amir Amanullah Khan, the use of lunar dates (H.Q) was discontinued for the first time, and solar dates (H.S) were implemented. In 1929 AD (HS 1307) under Bacha-Saqow the lunar era reappeared. Finally in 1931 AD, king Nadir Shah reinstalled the solar dates. This era has been used continually since then. Both the H.S and H.Q eras are based on the flight (Hijra) of the prophet Mohammad from his native town of Mecca to Madina. This epos-making journey, being the beginning of Islam’s progress, is recognized by the Moslems as year one. Prior to 1926 AD (HS 1304), the unit of currency was based on Kabuli-Ruppe. There were 60 Paisa in one Kabuli-Rupee, and 5 Paisa equalled one Shahi. Moreover, 10 Paisa made one Senar, and 6 Senar one Rupee. In addition, 20 Paisa was Abbasi and 3 Abbasi one Rupee. Finally, 30 Paisa equalled one Qiran, and two Qiran one Rupee. Similarly, a Senar was 1/6, Abbasi 1/3, and a Qiran 1/2 of a Rupee. In 1925, the Kabuli system was superseded by a decimal system. 100 puls was established as one Afghani. Thus, eleven Kabuli-Rupee was to 10 new Afghanis.

C o p y r i g h t © 2 0 1 2 , P e r s i c G a l l e r y, I n c . A l l r i g h t s r e s e r v e d . P e r s i c G a l l e r y - P. O . B o x 1 3 0 3 7 2 - B o s t o n - M A 0 2 11 3 • w w w. p e r s i c g a l l e r y. c o m

6


List of Abbreviations g: Grams!

!

!

Used measuring the weight of the coins.

HQ: Higiria Qamari!

!

The lunar Islamic era, based on the flight of the prophet, Mohammad, from Mecca to Medina.

HS:! Higira Shamsi! !

!

The solar (Shams) Islamic era based on the flight of the prophet, Mohammed from Mecca to !

!

!

Medina.

!

!

!

!

!

!

!

M: Mihrab & Monber! !

The emblem of Afghanistan. The Mihrab is the arched alter of a mosque, which is faced to!

!

!

!

!

!

wards Mecca; and Monber is the elevated reading desk or pulpit.

mm: Millimeter!!

!

!

Used in measuring the diameter of the coins.

NL:! Nasta-leeq!!

!

!

A type of Dari script popular in Afghanistan and Iran, characterized by elongated letters. The

!

!

!

!

!

!

!

NL is used in lithography.

N: Naskh! !

!

!

!

A style of script, Arabic way of writing, characterized by closer grouping of letters. Naskh is !

!

!

!

!

used in topography.

Obv: Observe Side !!

!

The side usually bearing the name of ruler or nation.

Rev: Reverse Side! !

!

The tail side, the side usually bearing Mihrab and Monber.

S: Suls! !

!

!

!

!

!

!

!

!

!

A very distinct style of Arabic script, charactrized by circular letters.

T: Toughra! !

!

!

!

A style of elaborately adorned, calligraphic, imperial or royal signature, which characterized !

!

!

!

!

by flowing !loops and vertical stems.

!

!

!

TK: Toughra-i-Khorasonee !A type of toughra, spread at the bottom. TR: Toughra-i-Rumi !

!

A type of grouped togther toughra, also called Turkish type.

C o p y r i g h t Š 2 0 1 2 , P e r s i c G a l l e r y, I n c . A l l r i g h t s r e s e r v e d . P e r s i c G a l l e r y - P. O . B o x 1 3 0 3 7 2 - B o s t o n - M A 0 2 11 3 • w w w. p e r s i c g a l l e r y. c o m

7


Genealogical Table

Sardar Payanda Khan

Sardar Sultan Mohammed

Sardar Yahya Khan

Amir Dost Mohammed

Amir Sher Ali

Sardar Mohammed Yusuf

Amir Afzal

Amir Abdul Rahman

Mohammed Nadir Shah

Amir Habibullah

Mohammed Zahir Shah

King Amanullah Khan

C o p y r i g h t Š 2 0 1 2 , P e r s i c G a l l e r y, I n c . A l l r i g h t s r e s e r v e d . P e r s i c G a l l e r y - P. O . B o x 1 3 0 3 7 2 - B o s t o n - M A 0 2 11 3 • w w w. p e r s i c g a l l e r y. c o m

8

Amir Azam


A Catalog of Modern Coins of Afghanistan