Thursday 4 June 2015

Books Among the Bombs

Some coineys secretly read this blog, scared though they are to admit it on their forums (and if they do only admitting to treat it as 'comedy'). Here's a chance for them to make themselves useful: Sam Hardy 'YPG confiscated a numismatic(?) book from Turkish Islamic State fighters in Syria. Do you recognise it?' Conflict Antiquities June 4, 2015.

The book was seized in a battle at against ISIL fighters (including Turkish ISIL members) who participated in the attack against YPG positions in Til Xenzir, next to the site at Tell Khanzir (36°50'12"N   40°53'37"E) near Qamişlo (Mehmet Nuri Ekinci, 'New documents unravel ISIS-Turkish state cooperation' ANF News Wednesday, June 3, 2015 at 12:00 PM).

The open pages would seem to be from an article in a collected work. I fancied that the references were titled "Bibliographie" but the shape of the words does not look very French to me. What's that map?The fuzzy outlines of coins figured suggest that the article is about coins of Phoenicia. The fourth coin along is probably something like a hippocamp coin of Tyre, the second one could be Tyche with turreted crown (which many of the mints in Phoenicia produced, but similar representations occur over a wider area), but then the third coin seems to be a issue of Sidon with a war galley and the reverse is a horse-drawn carriage with somebody in it. The sixth coin could be an issue of Arados, bearded bust/galley? These mints are on the coast of modern Lebanon and Syria.

Seized book in YPG hands (Sam Hardy)

If anyone recognizes what numismatic book is on the ISIL reading-list, please let Sam Hardy know.

UPDATE 7th June 2015

It is no surprise to learn that parts of the literature-challenged section of the commercial coiney community are now on record as refusing to help identify the book. Their approach to publications like this amply revealed by their reference to it merely as something which has "pictures of coins in it", hinting at how they use such literature in what they call their "research". Meanwhile, unaided by the dealers-in-denial, some progress is being made in working out what kind of text the three books pictured are, and the possible significance of the damage to the texts

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