Illustrated introduction to Ancient Persia, £8.99
Diameter: 30.000 mm
Weight: 4.158 g
Room 34: The Islamic world
Silver drachm of Khusrau II
Sasanian dynasty, AD 606
Minted at Istakhr, near Persepolis, southern Iran
The victorious king
Khusrau II (591-628) was also known as Khosrau Parviz, 'the victorious king'. This identity is reinforced by his distinctive crown, which is decorated with a pair of wings, a symbol of Victory. The king's personal name appears in Middle Persian on the right side of the bust, while on the left the phrase kvarrah apzut means 'may the glory of the king increase'.
The reverse depicts a Zoroastrian fire altar flanked by two attendants. An abbreviation in Middle Persian on the right side identifies the mint as Istakhr, near Persepolis, in southern Iran. The left side gives the year 16, which corresponds to AD 606.