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::: Collection of Yiğit Altay

Ilkhans, Anushirawan, AR  2 Dirham, Kighi, 746.

Ruler Type Mint Date Weight, gr Dia., mm ID
Anushirawan E (var.) 2 Dirham Kighi 746 1.41 20.50 459

Obverse Field
  Reverse Field
la ilah illa allah /
muhammad /
rasul allah
  al-sultan al-'adil /
anushirawan /
khallada mulkahu
Obverse Margin
  Reverse Margin
... / 'ali / 'umar / 'uthman   duribe kighi / sene sitta ar-/ (ba'in) / sittami'a

Album 2265?, Diler 824. (RRR)

Kighi is a very rare Anatolian mint about 50 miles southeast of Erzincan. This might be the only known example with a countermark on Anushirawan coins.

Levon Vrtanesyan explains this countermark very nicely on his page:

"The city of Alaiye and the surrounding area remained a part of the Byzantine Empire despite Arab advances due to the protection offered by the terrain. This area eventually fell to the ambitious Seljuqs of Rum, who were intent on acquiring a seaport. Eventually the city became their winter palace and a Seljuq mint operated here. With the coming of Mongols, this region became contested between the Seljuqs, Mongols, and local Turkic tribes, changing hands numerous times. There do exist some coins here with the names of Ilkhanids from the early part of the 14th century. These are believed to have been issued by the local Turkish Beys as a sign of vassalage to the Mongols. Later Alaiye was part of the Beylik principality of Karaman, one of numerous Turkic Beylik principalities that came into the scene with the decline and fall of the realm of the Seljuqs of Rum. Eventually, Alaiye too became an independent principality.

With independence came the right of coinage. In the very beginning, the Beys of Alaiye did not issue coins, but countermarked coins that circulated locally. They have been countermarked on Seljuq of Rum, Ilkhanid, and now Cilician Armenian hosts to name a few known examples. The earliest countermarks were the Arabic words Alaiye and Beha (value) on hosts to name a few. Besides words, there are also more interesting countermarks. These are an equestrian horseman and six-pointed star, otherwise known as a Solomon's seal. We know these are countermarks of the Beys of Alaiye because these countermarks usually appear with the countermarked Arabic word Alaiye, indicating the issuers as the Beys of Alaiye. These countermaks are dated from the 14th century.

The countermark on this piece is a six pointed stars, or Solomon's seals. This is actually a good luck omen in Islamic culture and is seen on a variety of coins from different periods and dynasties. Later, the six-pointed star becomes the symbol of state of the principality of Alaiye and is seen on much of the realm's later coinage."


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