ANCIENT COIN COLLECTORS GUILD

Afghanistan

March 15, 2022 3:59 PM | Sue McGovern-Huffman (Administrator)

Effective date: February 18, 2022

Source: 87 FR 9439-9445 (February 22, 2022), available at https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2022/02/22/2022-03663/emergency-import- restrictions-imposed-on-archaeological-and-ethnological-material-of-afghanistan

The Designated List of coins “sourced” to Afghanistan subject to import restrictions is as follows:

5. Coins— Ancient coins include gold, silver, copper, and bronze coins; may be hand stamped with units ranging from tetradrachms to dinars; includes gold bun ingots and silver ingots, which may be plain and/or inscribed. Some of the most well-known types are described below:

a. The earliest coins in Afghanistan are Greek silver coins, including tetradrachms and drachmae. Approximate date: 530-333 B.C.

b. During the reign of Darius I, gold staters and silver sigloi were produced in Bactria and Gandhara. Approximate date: 586-550 B.C.

c. Achaemenid coins include round punch-marked coins with one or two punched holes and bent bar coins ( shatamana ). Approximate date: 5th century B.C.

d. Gandhara coins include janapadas, bent bar coins based on the silver sigloi weight. Approximate date: 4th century B.C.

e. Mauryan coins include silver karshapanas with five punches, six arm designs, and/or sun symbols. Weights ranged from 5.5 to 7.2 gm. Approximate date: 322-185 B.C.

f. Gold staters and silver tetradrachms were produced locally after Alexander the Great conquered the region. Approximate date: 327-323 B.C.

g. Greco-Bactrian coins include gold staters, silver tetradrachms, silver and bronze drachms, and a small number of punch-marked coins. The bust of the king with his name written in Greek and Prakit were on the obverse, and Greek deities and images of Buddha were on the reverse. Approximate date: 250-125 B.C.

h. Common Roman Imperial coins found in archaeological contexts in Afghanistan were struck in silver and bronze. Approximate date: 1st century B.C.-4th century A.D.

i. Kushan Dynasty coins include silver tetradrachms, copper coin (Augustus type), bronze diadrachms and gold dinars. Imagery includes portrait busts of each king with his emblem ( tamgha) on both sides. Classical Greek and Zoroastrian deities and images of the Buddha are depicted on the reverse. Approximate date: A.D. 19-230.

j. Sassanian coins include silver drachms, silver half drachms, obols ( dang), copper drahms and gold dinars, and gold coins of Shapur II (A.D. 309-379). Starting with Peroz I, mint indication was included on the coins. Sassanian coins may include imagery of Zoroastrian Fire Temples. Approximate date: A.D. 224-651.

k. Hephthalite coins include silver drachms, silver dinars, and small copper and bronze coins. The designs were the same as Sassanian, but they did not put the rulers' names on the coins. Hephthalite coins may include imagery of Zoroastrian Fire Temples. Approximate date: 5th-8th centuries A.D.

l. Turk Shahis coins include silver and copper drachma with portraits of the rulers wearing a distinctive triple crescent crown. The emblems of these Buddhist Turks were also included on the coin. Inscriptions were in Bactrian. Approximate date: A.D. 665-850.

m. Shahiya or Shahis of Kabul coins include silver, bronze, and copper drachma with inscriptions of military and chief commanders. Hindu imagery is included on the coin design. The two main types of images are the bull and horseman and the elephant and lion. Approximate date: A.D. 565-879.

n. Chinese coins belonging primarily to the Tang Dynasty are found in archaeological contexts in Afghanistan. Approximate date: A.D. 618-907.

o. Ghaznavid coins include gold dinars with bilingual inscriptions, Islamic titles in Arabic and Sharda and images of Shiva, Nandi, and Samta Deva. Approximate date: A.D. 977-1186.

p. Ghurid coins include silver and gold tangas with inscriptions and abstract goddess iconography. Approximate date: A.D. 879-1215.

q. Timurid coins include silver and copper tangas and copper dinars, both coin types are decorated with Arabic inscriptions. Approximate date: A.D. 1370 -1507.

r. Mughal coins include shahrukhi, gold mithqal, gold mohur, silver rupee, copper dams, and copper falus. The iconography varies, depending on the ruler, but popular designs include images of the Hindu deities Sita and Ram, portrait busts of the rulers, and the twelve zodiac signs. Approximate date: A.D. 1526-1857.

Comment: The designated list of coins is particularly broad and includes coins that circulated regionally as well as internationally. It goes far beyond coins that "primarily circulated" within Afghanistan, the State Department's prior standard and encompasses coin types (like Roman Imperial coins) purposely left of prior lists. Hopefully, such broad restrictions made on an "emergency basis" will not be cited as "precedent" in the future, particularly given the Federal Register's requirement that they be "sourced" to


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