Suvarna Mohur: India’s Glorious History Illustrated Through Rare Coins by Arun Ramamurthy

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  • Genre: Non-fiction, History
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Source: Review Copy
  • Pages: 86
  • Publisher: Notion Press
  • Publication Date: November 5th, 2018 
  • My Rating: 4 stars

Goodreads Blurb

Suvarna Mohur is a coffee table book where India’s history is expressed through a different perspective – it’s rare coins. Coins provide not only evidence of trade and economy but also bear testimony to the history, politics and art of a nation.

Suvarna Mohur traces India’s history from the time the first coins were minted about 2500 years ago. Our political and social landscape has changed significantly from century to century with each successive period enriching our ancient civilisation and making it a more diverse country than it ever has been. Such diversity is also reflected in India’s coinage. Ranging from punch-marked types to rather uniquely shaped octagonal ones, from the world’s largest coins to the smallest ones, from coins used for everyday transactions to much sought after ones that were used as jewellery and from resplendent gold coins to the more ubiquitous copper varieties; India’s coins are not just a collector’s delight but also serve to illuminate our magnificent culture. The remarkable history of an epoch appears to spring to life when viewed in conjunction with the coinage representing that era.

Suvarna Mohur, while charting India’s history over the millennia, presents a bouquet of 133 rare coins which, in the author’s opinion, are best illustrative of our country’s antiquity, ethos and traditions

My Thoughts

Suvarna Mohur was an anticipated book for me as the concept of our country’s history told through coins was highly intriguing.

The author highlights all periods of history in a unique and interesting way. I liked that he described them all briefly so as to not make the book boring. The well-balanced combination of illustrations and information makes this book an enjoyable read. It was interesting to know the different meanings of symbols on coins and what the coins represented. The book also shows us the amalgamation of countries, cultures and religions in history represented in coins.

For the reader, this book not only gives knowledge of history but also shows us some rare coins. This is a well-research and well constructed book that can be read by readers of all ages. A great edition to an Indian reader’s shelf.

This book is a delight to read and flip through, and I would highly recommend it. 

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