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Nezak Huns - Vasudev

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Nezak Huns - Vasudeva

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Registered: August 2005
Location: Arizona USA
Posts: 2,365
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Part of the Hunnish Tribes associated with "White Huns", often grouped with coins of the Indian Subcontinent. This coin is a silver Drachm of VASUDEVA (ca. 720 A.D.) with gold plug is from the mint of Zabistan or Sistan. Often the gold plug is missing. This gold plug may have been incorporated to ensure value or prevent counterfeiting. These were of a similar design issued by Sasanians of Persia. OB: Bust right, wearing crown with two wings, surmounted by lion's head; Rx: Fire Altar (Zoroastrian) with ribbon, two attenants are flanking the altar, star and crescent flank the flames of the altar. REF: Gogl Em.244 (Sahi Tigin or Tegin); Sunrise # 1037. Choice Good VF, toned 3.20 g.; 32mm.
Another reference refines the description:
Nezak (Nspk) Huns Kingdom of Zabul Vakhu (Vasu)-Deva, Sub-ruler of Shahi Tigin Circa 720-738 AR Drachm. Sasanian style bust right, imitating Ardashir III; Brahmi legends in fields, Sogdian (ie. 'Baktrian') legend around rim, thunderbolt countermark on bust. Two horned attendants flanking fire altar, crescents above; Pahlevi legend in fields, Sogdian legend around.
Göbl (Huns) Em. 244. Rare.
This type hails from well within the Arab-Sasanian era, where similar types were coined by the Arab-Ephthalites. The Nezaks or other Turkic Huns remained non-Islamic and competed with the neighboring Arabs for domination. The personage portrayed here is definitely not Shahi Tigin (more accurately Kagin), although the bust is formalized. The ruler's name on obverse is 'Sri Vajara Vakhudevah' in Brahmi, and KOGONO appears on the reverse in Sogdian script.
Still another description from a Steve Album auction - would have to be taken as the latest and best attribution:
TURK SHAHI KINGS: Vakhu Deva, early 8th century, AR drachm, standard Sasanian design, with legends in Brahmi, Bactrian and Pahlavi, gold plug in center.

480 CE is when the Hephthalites conquered Sogdia. The Hephthalites were nomads of uncertain ethnicity. There is controversy regarding their origin, perhaps they were related to people called Hsiung Nu by the Chinese, who might have been related to the people the Romans called Huns. They are also referred to as Chionites and White Huns. Some of their coins have the word "Hono” on them, others have the word "Alchon.” But there is no consensus regarding who they were. Their art shows men with big moustaches, looking more "Turk" than "Mongol” or "Persian.”
They came from the northeast, like all of the nomads, and took all of the eastern regions of Sasanian Persia: western Afghanistan, Sogdia, Khwarezm (western Uzbekistan), Turkmenistan. But the Kushans, in Pakistan, held them off for the time being. This was about 350-450 CE.
Hephthalite coins work like this: In the 350s CE the Hephthalites conquered Bactria and issued imitations of Sasanian silver drachms of Shapur I, also imitations of Kushanshahr gold coins. In southern and eastern Afghanistan we have Sasanian-style coins featuring men, some of them with elongated foreheads that have made some people wonder if they practiced cosmetic head binding. Reverses of these coins are often extraordinarily crude. They are silver and billon, have
various sizes, and various legends or none. They have been in the market.
In 469 CE the Hephthalites captured the Sasanian King Peroz and ransomed him for millions of Sasanian silver drachms, which they proceeded to circulate in commerce.
As the coins deteriorated from wear and clipping, local Hephthalite authorities started countermarking them to guarantee their value (and collect a small fee.)
As the original supply became depleted they started making imitations of progressively more debased alloy and countermarking them, because countermarks had become normal in the markets. Eventually, they made copies with imitation countermarks engraved in the original dies.
Various series based on style and location developed in Afghanistan and Pakistan and on into India. The later issues are generically described as"Indo-Sasanian."
For Bactria and neighboring Sogdia a series of Sasanian-style billon drachms appeared around 475 CE, continuing perhaps a century. They are generically called “Napki Malka” coins, though now I think people prefer to read that legend as Nezak Malka, and some of the coins read Sri Shaho, Holy King. As a series, they are not uncommon.
The Hephthalites were, in their turn, ousted by Turks starting in the sixth century CE. It was different people but the same process. Something went wrong in northern Xinjiang and Siberia
and vast hordes of people started to move southwest. [WCN - Bob Reis, May 2020]
· Date: November 12, 2015 · Views: 2,219 · Filesize: 108.9kb · Dimensions: 900 x 452 ·
Keywords: Nezak White Huns Vasudeva, Tegin
Additional Categories: Hephthalites (White Huns)


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