Coins of Atabeys era found in Lankaran
By Aygul Salmanova
Nearly 150 coin denominations and fables containing 17 years of the 11th-12th centuries have been found in the country’s southern region Lankaran recently.
Ancient coins were discovered accidentally during farming and handed over to the stations collecting metals.
Head of the archaeological department of the Lankaran Scientific Center of ANAS, Mais Jafarov, told local media that they have accidentally acquired these coins at a metal shop. After cleaning the money, it became clear that they were copper coins and belonged to the Atabeys era, a dynasty of Kipchak origin that controlled most of northwestern Persia including Arran, most of Azerbaijan, and Djibal.
On the dirhams, writing "La ilaha illallah, Muhammaden Rasulallah" and the names of four Caliphs were mentioned. In the reverse side, the names of the city and Atabey Elygaz's names were engraved. This proves that the coins belong to the state of Atabeys, rulling in the 12th-13th centuries in Azerbaijan.
Among the finds are the coins of Seljuk sultans, Atabeys, including their masters. These objects are of particular importance for the nation to study the history of its ancient statehood, to investigate commodities and money relations of the Atabeys state.
Under the Atabeys, Azerbaijan became a significant cultural center of the Turkic people. Atabeys, usually Turkic slave-officers, were officially tutors and vice-regents to their princes, but in the political circumstances of the time, they were the actual rulers. The Atabey State fell in 1225 when it was added to the Great Mongol Empire created by Genghis Khan.
These recent findings proved once again that one of the branches of the Silk Road, the 11th-12th centuries trade network, crossed the Southeastern region.
Jafarov noted that taking into account the importance of the new findings, the numismatic map of the Southeastern zone will be created for the first time. He added that the catalog of coins discovered will be created and submitted to the scientific community.
The head of the department also noted that a museum of numismatics will be created in southern region to introduce foreign and local currency coins and coins to foreign tourists coming to our country.
“When tourists come to the region they are interested in history. If we create a numismatic museum here, the catalog will also be a guide for them. The great importance of the coins is that it is our statehood history,” he explained.
It should be noted that gold coins of Kirman Atabekov, discovered in southern region in 2013, are kept in the numismatics and epigraphic department of the Azerbaijan History Museum.
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