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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Greek Coins ▸ Hellenistic Monarchies ▸ Indo-Scythian KingdomView Options:  |  |  |   

Indo-Scythian

Alexander's successors in India became increasingly isolated and eventually became an island of Hellenic people, completely cut off from their western kinsman. Surrounded on all sides, they succumbed to the superior numbers of local people and disappeared from history.


Indo-Scythian Kingdom, Azes II, c. 35 - 5 B.C.

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Azes II may have been the last Indo-Scythian king in the northern Indian subcontinent (modern day Pakistan). Indo-Scythian rule crumbled under the conquests of the Kushans who expanded into India to create the Kushan Empire. Senior and Hoover now believe Azes II did not exist and attribute all Azes coins to Azes I or as posthumous imitative issues. A type attributed to Azes I has been found overstruck on a coin traditionally attributed to Azes II, supporting their hypothesis.
WA57599. Silver tetradrachm, Senior 98.329T; Mitchiner IGIS 6, 8489i; Fröhlich 274; Mitchiner ACW 2368 var. (obv control letter), HGC 12 637, gVF, weight 8.974 g, maximum diameter 23.2 mm, die axis 45o, obverse BAΣIΛEΩΣ BAΣIΛEΩN MEΓAΛOY AZOY, king on horseback riding right, holding whip, Kharosthi letter ti (control letter) before horse; reverse Kharosthi legend: Maharajasa rajadirajasa mahatasa Ayasa (of great king, king of kings, Azes the Great), Pallas standing right, raising right hand, spear over left shoulder and shield on left arm, monograms in left and right fields, Kharosthi letter va upper right; SOLD


Indo-Scythians, Kushanas Yuezhi in Hindu Kush and Gandhara, c. 55 - 45 B.C., Imitative of Hermaios

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Hermaios, the last Indo-Greek king, ruled in the Hindu-Kush region, from Alexandria in Arachosia (Kandahar, Afganistan), c. 105 - 90 B.C. His prosperous rule ended when the Scythian Kushanas Yuezhi invaded from neighboring Bactria. With his defeat, the isolated area of Greek domination in the east, which had lasted three centuries since the invasion of Alexander the Great, came to an end. The new rulers widely copied Hermaios coinage for many decades, in an increasingly debased and barbarized form.
GS80366. Silver tetradrachm, Senior Hermaios 34aT.2/3, Bopearachchi series 14, Mitchiner IGIS 418de, HGC 12 300 (S), VF, weight 9.449 g, maximum diameter 25.2 mm, die axis 0o, Gandhara, uncertain mint, c. 55 - 45 B.C.; obverse BAΣIΛEΩΣ ΣΩTHPOΣ (clockwise above), EPMAIOY (counterclockwise below), diademed and draped bust of Hermaios right, flowing diadem ties, dotted hair; reverse Kharosthi legend: Maharaajasa tratarasa Heramayasa (of Great King Hermaios the Savior), Zeus enthroned half left, chest bare, himation around hips and legs and over left shoulder, legs apart, right hand raised in benediction, scepter in left hand, monogram left, Kharosthi letter (resembling a reversed S) right; scarce; SOLD


Baktria, Sophytes, c. 325 - 294 B.C.

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Sophytes is described in Classical sources as a king in the Punjab region who submitted to Alexander and was permitted to retain his realms. He made a gift of hunting dogs to Alexander. Sophytes has been subject to a great deal of speculation, and equated with a number of Indian or Indo-Scythian Kings. John D. Grainger, however, identifies him as a Greek dynast. Frank L. Holt speculates that he was a mercenary captain who minted coins to meet the needs of his troops. Others speculate that he was a local official, installed or simply recognized, by Seleucus after he took the region.
GS77714. Silver drachm, Mitchiner IGIS 26c; Bopearachchi Sophytes 2; SNG ANS 14 - 16; HGC 12 8 (R1); SNG Cop -, aF, toned, rough, many bumps and marks, weight 2.974 g, maximum diameter 14.2 mm, die axis 180o, Sagala (?, Sialkot, Pakistan) mint, Pre-Seleukid Era, c. 305 - 294 B.C.; obverse head of Athena right, wearing Attic helmet ornamented with vine scroll and palm leaves imitative of classical Athenian tetradrachm; reverse eagle standing left, head turned back right, wings closed, bunch of grapes on vine above right; rare; SOLD


Indo-Scythian Kingdom, Azes I, c. 58 - 12 B.C.

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Senior identifies Azes as Maues successor in the Taxila area, and then later also as the successor of Azilises in Hazara. With Azes victory over the Indo-Greek King Hippostratos, the Indo-Scythian Kingdom took control of northwestern India.
WA65857. Silver drachm, Senior 98.422D; cf. Mitchiner IGIS 848g (tetradrachm), Fröhlich 296 (same), HGC 12 653 (S), VF, weight 2.180 g, maximum diameter 15.4 mm, die axis 0o, Taxila Sirsukh mint, c. 58 - 20 B.C.; obverse BAΣIΛEΩΣ BAΣIΛEΩN MEΓAΛOY AZOY, king riding right on horseback, wearing armor, raising right hand, whip over shoulder in left hand, Karosthi letter De before horse; reverse Kharosthi legend: Maharajasa rajarajasa mahatasa Ayasa (of great king, king of kings, Azes the Great), Pallas Athena standing right, raising right hand, shield on left arm, transverse spear in left, Φ above Karosthi monogram left, Karosthi monogram right; SOLD


Indo-Scythian Kingdom, Azes I, c. 58 - 12 B.C.

Click for a larger photo
Senior identifies Azes as Maues successor in the Taxila area, and then later also as the successor of Azilises in Hazara. With Azes victory over the Indo-Greek King Hippostratos, the Indo-Scythian Kingdom took control of northwestern India.
WA65891. Silver drachm, Senior 98.205D; cf. Mitchiner IGIS 848a, Fröhlich 284 var. (obv letter), HGC 12 637, VF, uneven toning, weight 2.306 g, maximum diameter 15.3 mm, die axis 315o, Hazara mint, c. 58 - 20 B.C.; obverse BAΣIΛEΩΣ BAΣIΛEΩN MEΓAΛOY AZOY, king riding right on horseback, raising right hand, whip over shoulder in left hand, Karosthi letter Da before horse; reverse Kharosthi legend: Maharajasa rajarajasa mahatasa Ayasa (of great king, king of kings, Azes the Great), Pallas Athena standing right, raising right hand, shield on left arm, transverse spear in left, Karosthi monograms left and right; SOLD


Indo-Greek, Indo-Scythian and Indo-Parthian Coins in the Smithsonian

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A catalogue based the Smithsonian Institution's General Collection and the Malakand Hoard.
BK13549. Indo-Greek, Indo-Scythian and Indo-Parthian Coins in the Smithsonian by Osmund Bopearachchi, 1993, 143 pages, 41 plates, hardcover, used, very good condition some wear on dust cover; SOLD


Indo-Scythian Kingdom, Azes I, c. 57 - 25 B.C.

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The standard references list larger denominations of this type but this smaller unit appears to unpublished. Senior 83.1 is most similar, also with very similar blundered legends, but 6.33 grams, and with a different monogram on the reverse.
WA54954. Bronze square unit, Not in sources consulted, perhaps unpublished; Senior -, SNG ANS -, Fröhlich -, Mitchiner IGIS -, Mitchiner ACW -, VF, weight 4.349 g, maximum diameter 23.3 mm, die axis 0o, .; obverse BAΣIΛEΩΣ BAΣIΛEΩN MEΓAΛOY AZOY (blundered), king on horseback right, holding whip, no spear, rectangular border and legend; reverse Kharosthi legend: Maharajasa rajarajasa mahatasa Ayilishasa (blundered), Herakles seated left on rock, holding club resting on his knee, monogram lower left, rectangular border and legend; SOLD


Indo-Scythian Kingdom, Azes II, c. 35 B.C. - 5 A.D.

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Azes II may have been the last Indo-Scythian king in the northern Indian subcontinent (modern day Pakistan). Indo-Scythian rule crumbled under the conquests of the Kushans who expanded into India to create the Kushan Empire. Senior and Hoover now believe Azes II did not exist and attribute all Azes coins to Azes I or as posthumous imitative issues. A type attributed to Azes I has been found overstruck on a coin traditionally attributed to Azes II, supporting their hypothesis.
WA57596. Bronze pentachalkon, Mitchiner ACW 2320, Mitchiner IGIS 831, Senior 101.1 (Azes I), HGC 12 659 (R2), aVF, weight 10.660 g, maximum diameter 26.6 mm, die axis 45o, obverse BAΣIΛEΩΣ BAΣIΛEΩN MEΓAΛOY AZOY (King of Kings, Azes the Great), goddess enthroned facing slightly left, raising right hand, cornucopia in left; reverse Kharosthi legend: Maharajasa rajarajasa mahatasa Ayasa (of great king, king of kings, Azes the Great), Hermes standing slightly left, raising right, caduceus in left, monograms left and right; SOLD


Indo-Scythian Kingdom, Azes II, c. 35 B.C. - 5 A.D.

Click for a larger photo
Azes II may have been the last Indo-Scythian king in the northern Indian subcontinent (modern day Pakistan). Indo-Scythian rule crumbled under the conquests of the Kushans who expanded into India to create the Kushan Empire. Senior and Hoover now believe Azes II did not exist and attribute all Azes coins to Azes I or as posthumous imitative issues. A type attributed to Azes I has been found overstruck on a coin traditionally attributed to Azes II, supporting their hypothesis.
WA87820. Bronze hexachalkon, Mitchiner IGIS 6 850ll, Senior II 102.132, Mitchiner ACW 2388, HGC 12 657, VF, brown tone, porosity, reverse off center, edge cracks, weight 13.179 g, maximum diameter 27.9 mm, die axis 0o, Taxila Sirsukh C mint, c. 35 B.C. - 5 A.D.; obverse BAΣIΛEΩΣ BAΣIΛEΩN MEΓAΛOY AZOY (King of Kings, Azes the Great, square O), humped bull standing right, Kharosthi monogram above, Kharosthi letter "shi" before forelegs; reverse Kharosthi legend: Maharajasa rajadirajasa mahatasa Ayasa (great king, king of kings, Azes the Great), mane-less lion standing right, Kharosthi monogram above; ex Tyche Numismatics; SOLD


Indo-Scythian Kingdom, Azilises, c. 57 - 35 B.C.

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The obverse legend can be translated, "king of kings, Azilises the Great" and the reverse legend, "the great king, the king of kings, the Great Azilises." Fröhlich identifies the denomination as four units.
WA55084. Bronze square trichalkon, Senior 59.1; Fröhlich 102; Mitchiner IGIS Vol 6, 812a, HGC 2 603 (R3), VF, 22.1 x 22.3 mm, 7.016 g, die axis 0o, obverse BAΣIΛEΩΣ BAΣIΛEΩN MEΓAΛOY AZIΛIΣOY, king riding right on horseback, holding whip, Kharosthi letter ti above; reverse Kharosthi legend: maharajasa rajarajasa mahatasa ayilishasa (of great king, king of kings, Azilises the Great), Herakles seated left on rock, club on knee in right, left hand resting behind on rock, Kharosthi letter si over monogram on left; very rare; SOLD




  




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REFERENCES

Bopearachchi, O. Indo-Greek, Indo-Scythian and Indo-Parthian Coins in the Smithsonian Institution. (Washington D.C., 1993).
Bopearachchi, O. Monnaies Gréco-Bactriennes et Indo-Grecques. (Paris, 1991).
Bopearachchi, O & A. ur Rahman. Pre-Kushana Coins in Pakistan. (Karachi, 1995).
Fröhlich, C. Monnaies indo-scythes et indo-parthes, Catalogue raisonné Bibliothèque nationale de France. (Paris, 2008).
Mitchiner, M. Indo-Greek and Indo-Scythian Coinage. (London, 1975-1976).
Mitchiner, M. Oriental Coins: the Ancient and Classical World. (London, 1978).
Sear, D. Greek Coins and Their Values, Volume 2, Asia and Africa. (London, 1979).
Senior, R. Indo-Scythian Coins and History. (London, 2001).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, Denmark, The Royal Collection of Coins and Medals, Danish National Museum, Volume 7: Cyprus to India. (New Jersey, 1982).
Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum, The Collection of the American Numismatic Society, Part 9: Graeco-Bactrian and Indo-Greek Coins. (New York, 1998).

Catalog current as of Thursday, May 23, 2019.
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Indo-Scythian