Ottoman Coin with the Tuğra of Mahmud II

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Ottoman coin with the tuğra of Mahmud II AH 1223/1808 CE, Constantinople, Ottoman lands Bronze Kelsey Museum of Archaeology, 75784

Ottoman coin


Ottoman coin


At the center of this large bronze coin appears the imperial emblem, or tuğra, of the Ottoman sultan Mahmud II (ruled 1808–1839). This royal calligraphic monogram is comprised of intertwining letters that form the various parts of the sultan's names and titles. Each ruler of the Ottoman dynasty had his own distinctive tuğra, whose form became relatively standardized from the 16th century onward. Here Mahmud II's tuğra is encircled by a patterned crescent, framed on its perimeter by a blooming wreath. The coin's reverse specifies that it was struck in the city of Constantinople (modern-day Istanbul) in 1223 of the hijri calendar (1808 CE).

Bibliography: Bates 1982, 46–61; Bates and Darley-Doran 1985, 393; Wasserstein 1993; Heidemann 2010; Nadir 1986, 144–149, cat. nos. 60–62; and Umur 2011, 256–259.

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