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Coin of the Sasanian emperor Bahram II (276-293)
Place of Origin: Iran
Date: 276-293
Historical Period: Sasanian period (224-651)
Object Name: Coin
Materials: Silver alloy
Dimensions: Diam. 1 in, Diam. 2.5 cm
Credit Line: Acquisition made possible in part by the Society for Asian Art
Department: West Asian Art
Collection: Coins
Object Number: F1999.38.10
On Display: Yes
Location: Gallery 7

Description

Label:

The Sasanian empire (224-651) spanned a territory that included parts of what are today Oman, Iraq, Iran, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, and Afghanistan. Sasanians controlled the lucrative trade along much of the so-called Silk Road, which connected China to West Asia and the Mediterranean. In addition to impressive royal palaces and monumental sculpture, artisans of the Sasanian empire created a wide range of brilliant silver vessels, textiles, and other luxury goods. Small objects such as coins helped to spread and preserve Sasanian motifs, which would be copied and revived in later periods. An unusual attribute of Sasanian royal portraits is the elaborate royal crown.

Sasanian emperors linked themselves with the long heritage of Persian imperial reign, particularly with the much earlier Achaemenid empire (550-331 BCE). Zoroastrianism, one of the world's earliest monotheistic religions, was associated with the Achaemenids, and the Sasanians chose to make it their state religion. The Sasanian empire was defeated by Arab Islamic invaders about 640, beginning the Islamic period in the region.


More Information

Inscriptions: Fire of Bahram
Label:

The Sasanian empire (224-651) spanned a territory that included parts of what are today Oman, Iraq, Iran, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, and Afghanistan. Sasanians controlled the lucrative trade along much of the so-called Silk Road, which connected China to West Asia and the Mediterranean. In addition to impressive royal palaces and monumental sculpture, artisans of the Sasanian empire created a wide range of brilliant silver vessels, textiles, and other luxury goods. Small objects such as coins helped to spread and preserve Sasanian motifs, which would be copied and revived in later periods. An unusual attribute of Sasanian royal portraits is the elaborate royal crown.

Sasanian emperors linked themselves with the long heritage of Persian imperial reign, particularly with the much earlier Achaemenid empire (550-331 BCE). Zoroastrianism, one of the world's earliest monotheistic religions, was associated with the Achaemenids, and the Sasanians chose to make it their state religion. The Sasanian empire was defeated by Arab Islamic invaders about 640, beginning the Islamic period in the region.


Inscriptions: Fire of Bahram