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Diameter: 2.2 cm (7/8 in.)
Anonymous Gift 1999.225
This gold coin represents the reigns of the Kushana ruler, Vima Kadphises. The coin bears a portrait of the ruler on the obverse and various deities on the reverse. It is identified by an inscription in Kharosthi, the language used in northwestern India during the Kushan period.
The reverse depicts the figure of Hercules with the skin of the Nemean lion draped over his forearm and the lion's scalp also worn over his head. The Kushans primarily identified with Zoroastrian religious practice, but imagery on their coins and the religious groups they sponsored suggest they were ecumenical--open to supporting a wide range of sects.
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