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Bikaner & Alwar Rupees

Posted by Amit Bhandari on

Bikaner & Alwar Rupees

 Silver rupees of Alwar and Bikanir (as it was then spelled) are unique among Indian princely states as they are based on the uniform British India coins, but have some features of the local kingdom as well. The silver rupees of Alwar and Bikanir are the same size, weight and silver content as the British India Rupee. Moreover, the ‘heads’ side featured the regular portrait of Queen Victoria, making them indistinguishable from any other coin. It was the reverse where the name of the state and its ruler featured. Alwar coins were first minted in Calcutta in 1877 –...

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Fate of the Fiat…

Posted by Vivek Bhandari on

Fate of the Fiat…

Fate of the Fiat… Vivek Bhandari, June 2019    Picture 1 - Yugoslav 500Bn currency note Last month my daughter asked me to buy high denomination, defunct currency notes from certain east European, African and south American countries for a project. Of course I had read about hyperinflation in college. I do remember the turbulence in the Balkans in the early nineties. I also know that a number of governments and by extension their currencies have failed in the twentieth century. That said, I was still unprepared for the denominations that started jumping out at me. Right from hundreds of...

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The world’s Top 3 worthless currencies

Posted by Amit Bhandari on

The world’s Top 3 worthless currencies

  The Iranian Riyal remains the world’s most worthless currency – with a black market rate of 112,000 to the US Dollar. The Riyal has held this spot for several years running now. The Vietnamese Dong comes in at number 23,800 to the greenback – so a 100,000 Dong note will be worth about 4 dollars, or just under 300 rupees. The Dong has risen to the second position after Venezuela abandoned its old currency (yet again) and went for a new one. Indonesia brings up the third spot – 14,000 Rupiah to the dollar, or 200 of them to...

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Coins of the Princely State of Kutch

Posted by Amit Bhandari on

Coins of the Princely State of Kutch

  The Princely State of Kutch occupied the Kutch region of the modern-day state of Gujarat. It was one of the few princely states with its own coastline. Among numismatists, Kutch is known for its finely milled coins – copper as well as silver. The silver coins of Kutch are larger (13.90 grams) compared to the silver rupees minted by the British (11.67 grams). The silver content of these coins was also higher (0.937) compared to the British Indian Rupees (0.917). The most common coins of Kutch have been minted in the name of Khengarji – who was the ruler...

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Are silver coins a good investment?

Posted by Amit Bhandari on

Are silver coins a good investment?

  A numismatist collects coins out of interest, not out of a desire to profit. However, if you are spending large sums on buying coins, it is worth considering whether these may be worth something in time of need. The value of a coin (precious metal) can be divided into two parts – the value of the underlying metal and the numismatic value of the coin. The numismatic value of a coin will also depend on factors such as rarity, antiquity and condition, which are subjective. The first question – the value of the underlying metal, is relatively easy to...

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