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The tales that coins tell

Staff Correspondent

Coins of lesser metal were issued after wars

—Photo: R. Eswarraj

Coinage: M.R. Pavanje showing his coin collection to children at the head post office, Mangalore, on Sunday.

MANGALORE: “There are no victors in war” is an oft repeated cliché. As with most clichés, this is also a time tested truth. Since ancient times, financial loss inflicted by war was just as great on the victorious as it was on the vanquished. State treasuries were drained, and gold and silver were beyond the reach of the greatest of kings after every war. It was during such times that coins of lesser metals such as nickel and tin were issued.

This is just one of the many stories of human struggle and triumph that coins tell, said M.R. Pavanje, whose coins-collection was on display at the head post office in Pandeshwar on Sunday.

Displaying the pottin (made of mixed metals, with a predominance of tin) coins of Shatakarni dynasty, Mr. Pavanje said they were issued as the State treasury was under strain due to a battle. Pottin coins are thin and brittle, he said. A set of quarter-dollar coins of different states of the United States of America (U.S.A) were also put on display. The quarter-dollar coins have been issued in the spirit of unity, he said.

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