DELHI SULTANS Muhammad Shah II 1296-1316 AD tanka


DELHI SULTANS, Muhammad Shah II Khalji, 1296-1316 AD, tanka,709 AH (1309 AD), Hazrat Dehli mint, Obverse: name and titles in square and circle, date and mint around, Reverse: more titles in double square, silver, 28mm, 10.82g, GG-D226, F

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Ala Al-Din Muhammad Khalji II assassinated his predecessor, uncle Jalal Al-Din. He liked to go out and attack his neighbors and steal their stuff, which he brought back home and made a lot of the gold and silver into coins, which he put into circulation. This boosted the economy of his people, but he was mean in general. Defeated the Mongols, a thing that didn’t happen much. Died without settling his succession.

Dehli is how Delhi is written in Arabic. The Dehli Sultans, or “slave kings of Delhi,” started out as Turkish slave soldiers (mamluks). As mamluks were often given positions of responsibility by their owners, there was a tendency for them to usurp power and establish dynasties, and that’s what happened in Delhi. The reference used for the coins is “The Coins of the Indian Sultanates,” by Goenka and Goron.

The earliest ancient Indian coins were the “bent bar” punchmarked silvers of the Achaemenid Persians occupying Gandhara in northwest Pakistan. By the 3rd century BC coins were in general use in most of India and Ceylon, and in subsequent centuries struck round coins in gold, silver, and copper came into use throughout the subcontinent and beyond to Southeast Asia and Pacific islands to Java and beyond.