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A New Scholarly Undertaking in Numismatics

The coin collections of Paris (Biblothèque Nationale), Berlin (Staatliche Museen zu Berlin) and Vienna (Kunsthistorisches Museum) are working together to bring into focus their collections of Sasanian coins.

Around 7,000 of these coins are held in Paris, 2,500 in Berlin, and 1,400 in Vienna. They represent important – though not yet fully evaluated – historical sources on the culture of the Sasanian empire, which reigned from 224–561 AD with its centre in present-day Iran. At times it was the Roman Empire’s great adversary, before being defeated by advancing Arabs in the 7th century.

The following volumes of the work Sylloge Nummorum Sasanidarum (SNS), compiled in six volumes, have been published so far: Volume 1, which contains the coins of the empire’s founder Ardashir I (224–240 AD) and his successor Shapur I (240–272 AD) (authors: Michael Alram and Rika Gyselen), and Volume 3 (divided into two half-volumes), which contains extensive material from the period 309–531 AD, from Shapur II to Kawad I/2nd Reign. (Author: Nikolaus Schindel).

Publication: The series Sylloge Nummorum Sasanidarum is edited by Michael Alran and Rika Gyselen, and published by the Austrian Academy of Sciences (ISBN 3-7001-3224-7 and 3-7001-3314-6).