Weight: 10.860 g
Gift of the
Coins and Medals
Gold mohur of Jahangir with a portrait of his father Akbar
Mughal dynasty, Minted AH 1014 / AD
Coin showing a memorial portrait
Special presentation coins (nazarana) and coin-like commemorative medals were distributed by the Mughal emperor of India on his anniversary, or at New Year. They were not intended for general circulation, either because of their unusual designs or their exceptional size. The New Year ceremony took place at the beginning of the solar year and was an excuse to show off the wealth of the Emperor's treasures.
In 1605, the first year of his reign, Emperor Jahangir (1605-28) issued a gold mohur coin bearing a memorial portrait of his father Akbar (1556-1605). The Arabic inscription beside the fine portrait translates 'Allahu Akbar [God is Great] sanah 1 julus [auspicious year 1]'. The large sun on the reverse is a reference to the Ilahi era introduced by Akbar, which was based on the solar calendar.
The British Museum has other coins issued by Jahangir in its collections, including coins with his own portrait, and coins which show the signs of the zodiac.