1273 - 1284 - Lanka

BhuvanaikaBahu - One massa

The fairly common copper massa coin of king BhuvanaikaBahu(1273-1284) who reigned for eleven years from Dambadeniya and then moved to Yapahu.

SPECIFICATIONS
Denominationmassa
AlloyCopper
TypeStruck
Diameter19.00 mm
Thickness mm
Weight4.13 gms
ShapeRound
EdgePlain
DieAxis
1273_bhuvanaikabahu_obverse 1273_bhuvanaikabahu_reverse
Codrington #86Mitchiner #850
There are many variations of these massa coins, particularly those of BhuvanaikaBahu. The script of legend and other features on type illustrated on right is significantly different from that above. 1273_bhuvanaikabahu_obverse 1273_bhuvanaikabahu_reverse
Codrington #87Mitchiner #851-852
Obverse : Traditional Lankan mass-a design of standing king.
The head consists of an irregular oblong, the right side being a vertical line, from which projects three horizontal stokes representing the nose, mouth and chin. The crown bulging outwards at the back. The two curved lines on either side of the legs slightly turned upwards at the end indicate a person wearing a dhoti, and standing on a lotus stalk with flower to the right. The forearm is bent sharply down; the hand grasps the hanging lamp. The right side elbow is curved down with the arm turned upwards holds a flower presumed to be a jasmine blossom. To the right are five dots or spheres. A rim of 40 to 43 beads.
Reverse : Traditional Lankan massa design of seated king.
Head and crown as on obverse. Arm is raised upwards and the hand holds a conch shell. On right Devanagari legend Sri Bhu va nai ka Ba hu
bhuvanaikabahu_legend

This is one of six fairly common copper massa coins from the late Polonnaruwa and Dambadeniya era.

I quote from Codrington's "Short history of Ceylon" since the ancient chronicle Culavamsa becomes too verbose in this period.
Vijayabahu IV's younger brother, BhuvanaikaBahu succeeded in escaping; the usurper general Mitta failing to secure allegiance of the south Indian mercenaries, who had been won over by the true heir, was murdered, and the BhuvanaikaBahu (1273-1284) crowned and reigned eleven years. Early in his reign he had to deal with a Pandyan invasion, which he repelled ; thereafter he lived for a few years at Dambadeniya, and then removed to Yapahu.

Text edited from
* Ceylon Coins and Currency: H. W. Codrington, Colombo, 1924.
   Chapter VI Mediaeval Lanka - Sinhala of 12th & 13th Century - Series II, Page 70
* Culavamsa II Chapter LXXXI: Translation by Wilhelm Geiger. Pali Text Society 1930

The coin was scanned at 300dpi and displayed at 300dpi is from my original collection from Lanka.