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					                         *   I




   Catalogue of Indian Coins
        in the Cabinet of the
     Asiatic Society of Mumbai




                     A
                Proposal
               February 2006


The Asiatic Society of Mumbai
      Town Hall, Mumbai (India)


      Phone: +91-22-2266 0956
      Fax:   +91-22-2266 5139
                                SYNOPSIS
I       Abstract                                              page 2
II      Introduction                                          page 2
III     Methodology                                           page 3
IV      Duration of the Project                               page 3
V       Scope and Significance of the Project                 page 3
VI      Cost Estimate                                         page 4
VII     Appendices                                            page 6

I       Abstract
       Numismatics is an important tool in the hands of a historian. Coins
not only provide political information like names and titles of the issuing
kings and their predecessors but also throw a flood of light on other
historical aspects like social conditions, religious tolerance, language,
script, economic development like rise and fall of an empire, etc. Such
fossilized tablets of history are lying in public and private museums and
institutions unattended. This is mainly due to the scarcity of experts on
one hand and dearth of fund on the other. A scientific study of these coins
will open a new vista of research for historians and numismatists. Hence, a
systematic catalogue of these coins is needed which will also highlight the
treasure of India.


II      Introduction
       The Asiatic Society was established in 1804. The aim of the Society
was to provide a platform to Indologists working on different aspects of
Indian history and culture. In due course, the Society gained such a
reputation that the then Government of India started supplying hoards of
coins unearthed in different parts of the Indian subcontinent. This was the
main supply of coins for the Society that helped in building a substantial
collection of 11,830 coins.

      This unique numismatic collection includes 643 gold coins and rest
in metals like silver, copper, lead and billon. The coin cabinet covers a
range of coins of important dynasties like Pre-Mauryan, Mauryan, Post-
Mauryan Punch-marked coins; the Kushans; the Kshatrapas; the
Satavahanas; the Guptas; Sultanates like Delhi Sultanate; the Great
Mughals; the Princely States and coins of the European countries like the
Indo-Danish, Indo-Dutch, Indo-French, Indo-Portuguese, the East India
Company and of the British. Also included are some of the coins of the
Middle East, European countries and America. The Society also houses
some of the extremely rare coins like the 5 Tola Gold Mohur of Akbar
the Great (illustrated in the Appendix 1) and some of the very rare punch-
marked coins from the famous Sultanpur-Wai Hoard of Satara,
Maharashtra.

Asiatic Coin Proposal                                             Page 2 of 6
       Although these coins are properly stored in paper envelopes and
kept in a safe vault, what is needed is a proper study and publication for
the posterity. A well-studied catalogue of these coins will be helpful for
the numismatists and historians on one hand and to ever-growing
community of coin collectors on the other hand. Such a catalogue will also
put these coins in their right place, i.e. in the hands of numismatic
community to admire study and analyze the metallic tablets of Indian
Heritage. The present Project revolves around this millennium task of
classifying, cataloguing and publishing the unique collection in the cabinet
of the Asiatic Society of Bombay.

III    Methodology
> Initial classification of all the coins with respect to time and dynasty
> Complete digital photography of all the coins
> Classification of coins as per dynasties, rulers, types, denomination and
  varieties.
> Designing of Software for Index Cards. This advanced Software will
  have a number of search filters. With the help of this, one can search in
  seconds for a query like, "silver Rupees of Mughal Emperor Akbar
  issued from Akbarabad mint (modern Agra)".
> Preparing Digital Index Cards for all the coins classified (a sample of
  the proposed card is attached herewith). A hardcopy of the Index Cards
  will be available in the Library so a research scholar can go through it
  and get the necessary information without looking at actual coins.
> Data entry of the cards in the computer software
> Preparation of Catalogues
> Publication of a four-color volume, Catalogue of Indian Coins in the
  Cabinet of the Asiatic Society of Bombay.

IV     Duration of the Project
       The classification and cataloguing of the collection is expected to be
complete within twenty months. However, publication of the catalogue
will take some more time.

V      Scope and Significance of the Project
The project is important for a number of reasons. The Asiatic Society is
going to be the first institution in India whose complete coin collection
will be digitally recorded with all the major coins classified and published
in lull color. Moreover, the entire collection will be available on CD-
ROM. Secondly; the catalogues will be useful to historians and
numismatists on one hand and the coin community on the other. Finally,
the project will be a stepping stone in the direction of establishing a full-
fledged Numismatic Center in the Society. Hence, the scope of the
project is not limited to mere cataloguing and publishing them but for the
overall benefit of historians, archaeologists, numismatists and public at
large.


Asiatic Coin Proposal                                               Page 3 of 6
VI     Cost Estimate

An estimated cost of the whole of the project is calculated as under:

 No.                        Heads of Expenditure                          Amount
 1      Photography Expenses                                                 3,00,000
 2      Remuneration of scholars                                            4,60,000
 3      Computer and Related Accessories                                    2,30,000
 4      Stationery, Xerox and Travelling Expenses                              60,000
 5      Publication of a 4-color Catalogue                                   8,00,000
 6      Incidental Expenses                                                  1.50,000
                          Total Cost of the Project (in Indian Rupees)    20,00,000/-
                                           (Rupees Twenty Laks only)

A break-up of the Heads of Expenditure is given under:

(1)    Photography Expenses

(A)   Digital Photography of 11,830 coins
      All the coins will be digitally photographed individually. The break
up of cost is as under:

                        Details                                Cost (Rs.)
11,830 coins x 2 sides =                              23,660 images
23,660 images x Rs. 10 per JPEG image                                     2,36,600/-
Cost per Coin                                                                   20/-
                             Total (Rs.) (rounded up)                     2,36,000/-

All the coin Images will be photographed by the latest Digital Camera,
Nikon, Model - CoolPix 8800 with 8 Mega pixels. The digital
photography (also transparencies in SLR - 35 mm format) will be done by
Dr. Dilip Rajgor.

(B)    Color Transparencies of1,000 coins
      Colour Transparencies of selected 1,000 coins (2,000 transparencies
for both the sides) will be prepared for final printed catalogue; lectures and
presentations. These will also be useful for printing Greetings Cards,
Calendars, etc. This, in turn will yield revenue for the Society.


                         Details                                  Cost (Rs.)
 1,000 coins x 2 sides = 2,000 transparencies
 Transparency Film — Kodachrome E 100S
 Cost per Transparency                                                              32/-
 Total cost: 2,000 transparencies x Rs. 32 each                                64,000/-




Asiatic Coin Proposal                                                          Page 4 o f 6
Total Photography Cost:

                         Details                                 Cost in Rs.
 Total Digital Images 23,660                                              2,36,000/-
 (SJ Rs. 10 per image x 11,830 coins
 Transparencies                                                                64,000/-
 (a} Rs. 32 per Transparency X 2,000
                            Total cost of Photography                     Rs. 3,00,000/-

(2)    Remuneration
       Two scholars (Dr. Dilip Rajgor and Mr. B V Shetti) will be working
for three proposed Catalogues of coins. These catalogues are classifies as:
i)     Catalogue of Ancient Coins
ii)    Catalogue of Medieval Coins
iii)   Catalogue of Modern Coins

      Each Catalogue is expected to be ready within six months. Each
scholar will be paid a lump sum of Rs. 1,00,000 for preparing a catalogue
within six months. Two more months will be required to give a finishing
touch to the whole project. A full-time Research Assistant will help the
scholars for a period of 20 months. In the end, a four-color volume will be
printed illustrating important coins, entitled Catalogue of Indian Coins in
the Cabinet of the Asiatic Society of Bombay. Estimated cost is described
hereunder:

                         Details                        Remuneration        Total (Rs.)
Catalogue of Ancient Coins                                     1,00,000
Catalogue of Medieval Coins                                    1,00,000
Catalogue of Modern Coins                                      1,00,000
2 months for finishing touch                                     40,000
A Research Assistant (6,000 x 20 months)                       1,20,000       4,60,000/-

(3) Computer and Related Accessories
                            Details                                          Amount
Pentium IV processor 3.2 GHz, Intel Mother Board, 915 Chip                   1,65,000/-
Set ATN, 1 gb RAM, 3 Hard Disks of 200 GB each Ultra ATA
- 7200 RPM, 52X CD-Rom, 1.44 MB Floppy drive, 19 inch
Samtron Color Monitor, 440 w Speakers, 2 serial/1 parallel ports,
32 MB Display Card, Plextor, Internal DVD-Writer 12x,

 UMax Scanner, 1220S 600x1200 dpi,
 HP Laser Printer — 6L,
 External Modem, US Robotics, 56 kbps,
 500VA UPS - 20 minutes

 Software Designing for CD-ROM version                                          60,000/-
 Tanita Weighing Scale                                                           5,000/-
                                                              Total Rs.       2,30,000/-



Asiatic Coin Proposal                                                          Page 5 of6
(4)    Stationery, Xerox and Travelling Expenses
                                   Details                                    Amount
 Stationery                                                                     25,000
 Xerox (photocopy)                                                                5,000
 Traveling and related expenses                                                 15,000
 Computer Accessories                                                           15,000
                                                               Total Rs.       60,000/-

(5)    Publication of the Catalogue
                                 Details                                      Amount
Estimated cost of printing of the book, Catalogue of Indian Coins in the       8,00,000
Cabinet of the Asiatic Society of Mumbai
                                                              Total Rs.       8,00,000/-

VII Appendix

                        Specimen of a proposed Index Card


                                  Coin Cabinet of the
                    ASIATIC SOCIETY OF MUMBAI

Dynasty             Mughal Empire               Accession No.: 8219
King               Akbar, Jalal-ud-din
Reign              AH 963 - 1014
                   AD 1556-1605
Denomination       5 Mohurs
Mint
Mint Mark          A Fish
Year               972
Metal               Gold                             Type : Kalima type
Weight              53.2 grams                       Rarity: Extremely Rare
Reference           Rajgor (1991) Type # 1179
Remarks           : This is the 3 r d known coin in the world
Source            : Sultanpur Hoard 1878
Image No.         : 2002-1926
Transparency #    : 8219


                                                    Project prepared by Dr. Dilip Rajgor




Asiatic Coin Proposal                                                           Page 6 of 6

				
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