SCYTHIAN, Vonones & Spalahores, c. 75-65 BC, tetradrachm


SCYTHIAN, Vonones & Spalahores, c. 75-65 BC, tetradrachm, no date, Bannu mint , Obverse: horseman with spear R, BASILEWS BASILEWN ONWNOU (Greek), Reverse: Zeus standing facing with scepter in raised left hand and thunderbolt in lowered right hand, MAHARAJABHRATA DRAMIKASA SPALAHORASA (Karosthi), monogram 133 right, silver, 27.5mm, 7.76g, S65.4aT, MA2151, ancient mount marks in very fortunate place on reverse, F

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The Scythians were horse nomads famous for their cruelty and for riding around naked in the winter. They were active for about 500 years from Eastern Europe to India.

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.