15 April 2014
Take a look at this fascinating coin from the Kingdom of Askum in what is now East Africa, as detailed in the May issue of Stamp & Coin Mart ...
When most of us think of Ethiopia we don’t imagine a region with a history stretching right back to the third century, yet coins from the Kingdom of Askum in what is now East Africa, as detailed in the May issue of Stamp & Coin Mart, shed new light on the region and period, giving us a better idea of the art and language used.
The Kingdom of Askum came to prominence in the first century AD thanks to its position within the profitable trade networks of the region and prospered until the seventh century.
Aksumite coins were struck from the end of the third century AD to the early seventh and were initially closely influenced by the Roman monetary system, being struck to a similar weight in the three classic metals; gold, silver and bronze.
Early coins were inscribed in Greek but over time this became a feature of only the gold with the lesser metals inscribed in the Ge’ez language (a Semitic language written in the old south Arabian alphabet).
Read our exclusive article on the coins of the British Museum in every issue of Stamp & Coin Mart.