BULGARIA, copper, trachy, no date (circa 1186-96 AD)


BULGARIA, Second Empire, circa 1186-1393, trachy, no date (circa 1186-96 AD), Obverse: long bust of Christ facing, Reverse: emperor & St. Constantine standing facing, irregularly shaped, scyphate, copper, 24mm, 2.13g, imitation of type of Byzantine Emperor Alexius III, Dumbarton-Oaks plate 25/1-5, VG/VF

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Bulgaria was home to a Neolithic culture 8000 years ago. In ancient times it was northern Thrace. War between ethnic groups, indigenous and nomad, was the norm until Roman times, when some centuries of relative peace occurred, after which nomad invasions resumed. The last of those invasions was the Bulgars. The Bulgars adopted Christianity and developed the Cyrillic alphabet so they could write in their own language. They conquered their neighbors and created the First Bulgarian Empire, which was conquered by the Byzantines. The Bulgarians revolted and reestablished their Empire, There was war all the time, then they were conquered by the Ottomans. Independence was obtained with Russian help in the late 19th century.

The political arrangements that resulted in the nations of modern Europe began to emerge out of anarchy starting in the 7th century AD or so. Europe, for our purposes stretches from Greenland to somewhere in Russia. Collectors of Europe would likely include Russia. Collectors of Asia, even though about 2/3 of Russia is in Asia, probably not.

By “Modern World Coins” we mean here, generally, the round, flat, shiny metal objects that people have used for money and still do. “Modern,” though, varies by location. There was some other way they were doing their economies, and then they switched over to “modern coins,” then they went toward paper money, now we’re all going toward digital, a future in which kids look at a coin and say “What’s that?” We’ll say: “We used to use those to buy things.” Kids will ask “How?” The main catalog reference is the Standard Catalog of World Coins, to which the KM numbers refer.