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Mint Names on the "Mazuna" denominated coins of AH1320 to AH1323.
Mazunas of Fes, AH1320-1323 "Fascinating Coins"
Mint Names on the "Mazuna" Denominated Coins of AH1320 to AH1323.
Ever wondered how to read the mint names on the Moroccan bronze coins of the early 20th century ? The SCWC does not seem to put this over too well......
BIRMINGHAM (England), FES ( Morocco), PARIS (France), BERLIN (Germany)
An example of each mint name on bronze coins of the AH1320/AH1323 (approx 1902/1905) types.
The image uses various examples of 5 Mazunas and 10 Mazunas coins to show the four mint names used on this series of coins i.e. 1, 2, 5 and 10 Mazunas (Y-14, Y-15.1 & Y-15,2, Y-16, Y-17). Also varying with minter on this series is the general size/style of the other legends on both sides of these coins (e.g. see the lower part of the denomination wording, this can be seen in the images over the top of each of the mint names). The mint names on the silver coins of this period are set out in a slightly different way to those on the bronze coins, maybe one day I will be able to do images for each of those. The English made silver pieces were made by the Royal Mint in London rather than by The Brimingham Mint - in both cases though the mint name wording is the same as it is just the Arabic for "England".
A bit of a follow on from the above info about mint names, is this article from Marc Pelletier - thanks to Marc.
Mazunas of Fes, AH1320-1323 - "Fascinating Coins"
(Text and images by Marc Pelletier)
At first glance, the mazunas of Fes, AH1320-1323 / 1902-1905AD,
have nothing special to hold the attention of collectors but, when we look
them closely, these coins reveal a great numismatic interest.
In fact, these copper coins were struck with a screw-press ( "balancier" ), in Morocco at Fes mint. At the same time, in the years AH1320-1321, some mazunas were produced with modern presses for Morocco, in the mints of Berlin, Birmingham and
But, this is not the true motive to explain a great interest for these coins! First, these mazunas were produced at Fes for the following dates and denominations (nine combinations):
AH1320 : 1, 2, 5 and 10 mazunas
AH1321 : 10 mazunas
AH1322 : 2 and 5 mazunas
AH1323 : 2 and 10 mazunas.
We can see that mazunas dated AH1322 and 1323 were only
struck at Fes and also note that the mintages are not known for the mazunas
of Fes. In reality these coins are scarcer than the mazunas struck in European
mints. For example, it is a great challenge for collectors to find
the 2 mazunas AH1322 of Fes in state VF+ .
But beyond rarity, what is the source of this fascination? The answer is very simple - the great diversity and the great number of varieties that we can find in regard of these coins! Indeed, for the nine coin series of these mazunas, there is a total of more than thirty major varieties reported (1) (2).
The varieties on the 10 Mazunas - Image.1. - The first variety for AH1320
The varieties on the 10 Mazunas - Image.2. - The second variety for AH1320
The varieties on the 10 Mazunas - Image.3. - The common obverse and the two varieties of reverse for AH1321.
The varieties on the 10 Mazunas - Image.4. - The common obverse and the two varieties of reverse for AH1323.
Since a picture is worth a thousand words, the above pictures
(showing the varieties of the 10 Mazunas) can speak themselves. Those collectors,
interested in strengthening their knowledge on this subject, will find
more information in the next edition of Jean Lecompte book "Monnaies et
Jetons des Colonies Françaises", from Editions Victor Gadoury.
As a first step, take a look at any examples of these coins that you have, maybe you will find one, two or even more varieties. I suggest you to invest time, patience and some money to enlarge your collection - you will like the results!
We don't know the whys and wherefores for the production of this large number of varieties (3), but it's absolutely certain that these mazunas of Fes present a fascinating page of Moroccan numismatics.
(1) Sanchez-Giron J.M.,
"Monedas de Marruecos", Ceuta 1980
(2) Eustache D., "Corpus de Monnaies Alawites", Rabat 1984
(3) "Corpus... ), page 445
Two other articles by Marc Pelletier on the coinage of Morocco, both
are published in the e-Journal of "The Islamic Coins Group" are:-
Seal Of Solomon On Coins Of Morocco
Contemporary Counterfeits, A Document Of History, The Counterfeit Dirhams of Morocco 1283-1291H
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Added "Mint Names on the "Mazuna" Denominated Coins of AH1320 to AH1323"
at June 2003.
Added "Mazunas of Fes, AH1320-1323 - "Fascinating Coins" " at February 2004.