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Lot
21750

Islamic Dynasties: Safavid, Sulayman I, 1078-1105 / 1668-1694, gold 16 ashrafis (47.25mm, 57.1g). ...

2013 January 6-7 Ancient & World Coin Signature Auction - New York #3021

 
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Auction Ended On: Jan 7, 2013
Item Activity: 0 Internet/mail/phone bidders
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Location: Waldorf Astoria
301 Park Avenue
New York, NY 10022

Description:
Spectacular Safavid Medallion
Safavid, Sulayman I, 1078-1105 / 1668-1694, gold 16 ashrafis (47.25mm, 57.1g).  Isfahan AH 1096, A-M2657, horizontal inscription on the obverse, made from the same dies as the silver 20 shahi (next lot). Extremely rare. Edge marks consistent with mounting. Choice Very Fine.

The massive and magnificent gold coins of the Safavid rulers were produced for presentation to important people for their services.  Very few were produced, of which only a small fraction have survived.  The concept of huge presentation gold coins was inherited from ancient Roman times, and were manufactured from time to time ever since.  The heaviest of all were issued by the Mughal emperors Shah Jahan I and Aurangzeb.  This is the heaviest of all known Iranian presentation coins.  The only larger examples are the special issues in the name of Agha Muhammad Khan (but probably not struck until will into the reign of his successor, Fath 'Ali Shah), but these were not intended for presentation but for payment to Russia for the peace treaty of 1828.

From Spink & Sons, London, in the mid-1980s, the only known example ever sold at auction.

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