Cairo Egypt Gold Coin Ottoman Sultani 926 AH - 1520 AD Sulyman The Magnificent al-Qanouni- VF
Description: Gold Sultani coin struck in Misr current day Fustat, which is a neighborhood on the outskirts of Cairo the current capital of Egypt. The coin was struck during the reign of the Ottoman sultan Suleiman or Suleyman the first or the magnificent who is also referred to as al-Kanuni or al-Qanuni (the law giver) who ascended the throne in 1520 AD (926 AH). The coin was struck in the period 1520-1566 AD (926-974 AH). The coin shows the date as 926 AH. The year 926 AH is Sulyman's accession date to the throne. Ottoman coins at that time used such a date for most coins struck during a sultan's reign and did not have the actual year of striking indicated. It also shows the mint as Misr current day Cairo Egypt. The obverse of the coin has the words "Sultan Sulyman ibn Selim Khan Ezat Nasruh Duriba Fee Misr Sanat 926", while the reverse reads "Darib al-Nadr Sahib al-Ezz wa al-Nasr fee al-Bar wa al-Bahr." The coin has a beautiful, bold, and well centered strike and displays nice calligraphy. Please carefully view the scan as it is part and parcel of our description.
Date: Marked 926 AH or 1520 AD.
Mint: Cairo Egypt.
Size and Weight: This is a sultani, weighs 3.5 grams and is about 19 mm in diameter.
References: It is Album 1317 and is listed in Kazan as 753 and is listed in Lane Poole's Catalog of the Khedivial Collection as 1642.
Condition: I would grade this coin as beautiful good very fine with a well centered, bold strike. The calligraphy is very readable and is all there. The coin shows parts of the beaded borders on bothe sides. The coin has a slight bend or wave in the center, which can be detected in the photos. However, this does not distract from the beauty or quality of the coin. This is a quality coin. Please see photo to appreciate the quality of the coin and for additional condition information.
Historic Perspective: Unlike prior Islamic coins struck in Egypt, Ottoman coins do not have long praying sentences. They contain the name of the Sultan and his father's, name of the mint, the accession date for the Sultan, and a short wishful sentence such as "khullide mulkehu (may his rule be permanent)" or "azzet nasrehu (may his glory be holy)". The Ottoman Empire existed from 699 AH (1300 AD) till 1341AH (1924 AD). In the beginning, the Ottoman state struck only silver coins known as Akce until the reign of Muhammad II (Mehmet the conqueror). On May 29, 1453, Mehmet II conquered Constantinople, the capital city of the Byzantine Empire. He made it the capital of the Ottoman State and called in Konstantiniye or Qustantinya (current day Istanbul). In 1478 he began striking Gold coins known as Sultani (also known as Dinar, Ashrafi, Funduk, or Altin). He based it on the Venetian ducat standard of 3.5 gram of high purity gold (over 21K).
Egypt was conquered by Selim I in 1517 AD (921 AH) and the mamluk rule was ended. Selim I, began striking coins in Cairo and used the mint name "MISR" on the coins. Although the Ottoman were the official rulers of Egypt the mamluks still wheeled quite a bit of power until Mohammad Ali massacred the last of them at the Cairo Citadel in the early 1800's. The obverse of the coin reads "Al Sultan Suleyman, Ibn Selim Khan, azzet nasrehu, Duriba Fee Misr Sanat 926 (literally translated as The Sultan Suleyman son of sultan Selim khan, may his glory be holy, struck in Egypt in the year 926)." Please carefully view photos as they are part and parcel of our description.
The Ottoman empire reached the height of its power under Sulayman I the Magnificent, with territory extending across north Africa and through the Balkans into Hungary. Coins were struck in more than forty mints spread throughout the empire. Sulayman was distinguished for his justice and tolerance. His military, educational, and legal reforms earned him the name Sulayman the Lawgiver (al-Kanuni) among Muslims. He was fond of pomp and splendor and was a lavish patron of the arts and of literature. The later years of Sulayman's reign were marred by family disputes over the succession. His favorite wife, Roxelana (or Khurema) intrigued against his eldest son, Mustafa, on behalf of her two sons, Selim and Beyazid. Mustafa built up his own faction, which seemed a threat to Sulayman. In 1553, Sulayman had him executed. Upon Roxelana's death, Selim and Beyazid quarreled. Beyazid rose in revolt, met defeat, and fled to Persia. The shah of Persia was induced to return him for a large sum, and Beyazid was executed. Selim succeeded Sulayman as Selim II.