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    C O I N I N D I A
    The Virtual Museum of Indian Coins
    Today's Featured Coin
    Indo-Scythian: Gondophares
    AE octodrachm, c. 50-10 BCE or c. 20-55 CE

    Weight:19.10 gm., Diam:27-28 mm., Die axis:11h
    Bust of Gondophares facing right
         Greek legend: BACIΛEΩC CΩTHPOC VNΔOΦEPPOV
                    (of King Gondophares, the Saviour)/
    Winged Nike standing right, holding diadem
         Kharoshti legend: Maharajasa Gudaphanisa tratarasa
    The date of Gondophares is a matter of great contoversy. He has been equated with one "King Gudnaphar" mentioned in the Apocryphal Acts of St. Thomas, an early Christian text. As St. Thomas met this King Gudnaphar, the date for Gondophares necessarily had to be no earlier than approximately year 20 CE. However, Robert Senior has argued that the King Gudnaphar of the Acts was probably Gondophares-Sases, who succeeded Abdagases, the successor to Gondophares I. On the basis of numismatic evidence, Senior dates Gondophares 70 years earlier than the conventional date.

    This unique coin was published by Senior in the Newsletter of the Oriental Numismatic Society, No. 171 (Spring 2002). Copper tetradrachms of Gondophares, weighing approximately 9.5 gm., are very common, but this double-weight coin, at 19.10 gm., is the only one known of this denomination.