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AFGHANISTAN COINS & BANKNOTES

A numismatic review of a troubled land.

For coins of India, please visit Click Here2200 YEARS OF COINS OF INDIA
For coins of Iraq,  please visit Click Here1800 YEARS OF IRAQ COINS & CURRENCY
For coins of other countries of the Middle East, please visit our Click HereMIDDLE EAST COINS PAGE


COINS OF THE KIDARITES

Kidarite copper coins, circa 350-500ADThe Kidarites were nomadic Huns that conquered the Kushano-Sassanians sometime around 350AD.  They are sometime referred to as the “Red Huns”.  Very little is known about them.  They controlled an area that now is made up of parts of northern Afghanistan, northern Pakistan, as well as parts of TajikistanUzabkistan and Turkmenistan. . They ruled the region until about 500AD. The Kidarites appear to have been a confederacy of warlords, many of whom issued coins.  Not having had a tradition of coinage, they copied the basic designs and fabric of the coins they found in circulation without an apparent understanding of the meaning of the designs. Some of the coins are modeled on Sassanian or Kushano-Sassanian coins depicting the bust of the king and a fire altar.  Other coins are modeled after Kushan or other Indian coins and feature various deities or a standing king. There is a wide variety of extremely crude and primitive Kidarite copper coins.  These scarce, crude Kidarite copper coins are unusual pieces from a little know Hunnic tribe.
Item KIDARx1 KIDARITE COPPER UNIT, circa 350-500AD, CRUDE  $5.00
Item KIDARx5 5 of the above KIDARITE COPPER UNIT, circa 350-500AD, CRUDE  $18.00
Item KIDARx100 100 of the above KIDARITE COPPER UNIT, circa 350-500AD, CRUDE  $195.00


LAST COINS OF THE LAST KING OF AFGHANISTAN

Afghanistan 1, 2 & 5 Afghani coins 1961, AH1340 KM953-955, obversesAfghanistan 1, 2 & 5 Afghani coins 1961, AH1340 KM953-955, reverses
Mohammed Zahir Shah ascended to the throne of Afghanistan in 1933 when he was only sixteen years old.  His long reign was noted for modernization, peace and stability in what was, and again is, a war-torn nation.  He managed to maintain neutrality during World War II.  During the Cold War he received aid and support from both the United States and the Soviet Union.  In 1973 he was overthrown by his cousin Mohammed Daud Khan who attempted to establish a republic. His last coins were these 1, 2 and 5 Afghani dated SH1340 (1961AD).  The 5 Afghani was highly controversial as it featured his portrait. It was the first Afghan coin to feature a monarch's image. Because Islam discourages the use of images of people, the coin was poorly received and many were mutilated or destroyed.  A statue of an eagle with outstretched wings is on the 2 Afghani.  Three ears of wheat are on the 1 Afghani.  All three coins are struck in nickel-clad steel and feature the denomination on the reverse.
Item AF-SET61 AFGHANISTAN 1, 2 & 5 AFGHANI SH1340 (1961) KM953-955 AU-UNC. $4.50



NEWBANKNOTES FROM SOVIET OCCUPIED & TALIBAN AFGHANISTAN

Afghanistan 50, 100, 500 & 1000 Afghani notes, (1978 - 1991)
This set of 4 attractive Afghanistan banknotes were introduced in 1978 during the Soviets occupation of Afghanistan.  The notes continued to be printed until about 1991 for the Taliban and various warlords.  The set includes the 50, 100 and 500 and 1000 Afghani notes in crisp uncirculated condition.  The 50 Afghani pictures the Dar-al-Aman palace in Kabul.  The 100 Afghani depicts a farmer and the Naghlu hydroelectric dam on the Kabul river.  The 500 Afghani pictures a group of horsemen playing Buzkashi. Buzkashi is the national sport of Afghanistan.  It is somewhat similar to polo, but is played with goat or calf carcass and has few, if any, rules. The 1000 Afghani depicts a flock of birds at the Mazar-e-Sharif Mosque (Noble shrine) on one side.  The other side pictures the monument to fallen soldiers and the Victory Arch in Paghman Gardens near Kabul.  They were built to commemorate Afghan victory over the British in 1919, heavily damaged during the Soviet-Afghanistan war in the 1980's and have since been restored. The notes all bear the seal of the Afghanistan bank on the front. The seal includes an image of an ancient Greco-Bactrian Tetradrachm minted circa 171-179BC, two cornucopias spilling out coins and the year the bank was founded (1939).  The notes are a reminder of the recent troubled and violent history of Afghanistan.
Item PM-AF-SET4 AFGHANISTAN 4 NOTE SET 50 - 1000 AFGHANI (1978-1991) UNC. $5.00




RECENT COINS OF AFGHANISTAN  

Afghanistan 3 coin set: 1 2 5 Afghani SH1383 (AD2004)In 2004 Afghanistan released its first coins for circulation since 1980.   The set includes a copper-plated steel 1 Afghani, a steel 2 Afghani and an aluminum-bronze (brass) 5 Afghani, dated SH1383, which corresponds to AD2004. Since 2005 no additional coins have  been minted  for circulation. The coins feature the denomination on one side and the traditional arms of Afghanistan on the other.  The coins were minted in Europe, sent by ship to Pakistan, and then trucked to Afghanistan.  Millions of the coins were stolen while they were in transit in Pakistan. The loss was only discovered when sharp-eyed customs official noted that a truck containing the coins was much lighter than it should have been.  The release of the coins was delayed until the stolen coins were recovered. The coins help mark Afghanistan's return to normalcy after years of civil war and Taliban rule.
Item AF-SET3 AFGHANISTAN 3 COIN SET 1, 2 & 5 AFGHANI SH1383 (AD2004) KM1044-1046 UNC. $3.75





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