Maneless Lion Type

Ancient Lanka - Mahasena : 277 - 304

A circular copper coin found at various archaeological sites in Anuradhapura with the Sinhala dynastic emblem; a Lion standing to left or right.

SPECIFICATIONS
AlloyCu
TypeCast ?
Diameter16.5/18.2 mm
Thickness mm
Weight1.78 gms
Shape0.9 elliptical
DieAxis
maneless_rlion_obverse maneless_rlion_reverse
Mitchiner #
SPECIFICATIONS
AlloyCu
TypeCast ?
Diameter16.6 mm
Thickness mm
Weight1.45 gms
Shaperound
DieAxis
maneless_rlion2_obverse maneless_rlion2_reverse
Mitchiner #
Obverse : In line circle maneless Lion standing right.
Reverse : In similar circle with four dots disposed in a cross.

This type of coin has been found in the interior of the Jetavanarama Dagoba in Anuradhapura built by King Mahasena (A.D. 277-304) and therefore known to have been in use during his reign. They could not be of much later date since not long afterwards Roman "third brass" flooded the coins in circulation in Lanka.

The coins were scanned at 300dpi and displayed at 300dpi. The elliptical coin was purchased in Dec 1999 from a reputed dealer in Galle, Lanka. The round coin was obtained in Aug 2000 from Rajah Wickremesinhe an Author and collector in Colombo, Lanka. He had purchased it in 1984 from a shop in Ampara.

The meaning of the 4 dots also seen on some Dutch dumps has intrigued me.
It looks so much like a Gravitational lensed Quad image as on right :-)

A realistic origin is probably the degeneration of the figure on Lakshmi plaque coin.

HST 14176+5226
HST:14176+5226

Text edited from
* Ceylon Coins and Currency By H. W. Codrington. Colombo 1924
  Page 25 Chapter III Maneless Lion Type - Pl 19
* Ruhuna. An Ancient Civilisation Re-visited by Bopearachchi and Wickramasinhe. 1999
  Page 28 Local coins - Maneless Lion - Pl H.27 to H.29.