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Tram of King Het‘um I (1229–69)


On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 300

The Hetumid dynasty’s forced alliance with the Rum Seljuks from 1228 to 1245 yielded coinage with Armenian inscriptions on the face and Arabic ones on the back. On the left, Het‘um I appears astride a horse with an inscription in Arabic of the Rum Seljuk ruler Kaykhusraw (r. 1237–46) on the back. On the right is the back of a similar coin with an inscription of the Rum eljuk ruler Kayqubad (r. 1220–37).

Armenian rulers minted coins throughout their history (see tetradrachm of King Trigranes II). In the medieval centuries, the rulers of the kingdom of Cilicia (now part of southeastern Turkey) minted silver and copper coins with Armenian inscriptions that reflected their royal status and ambitions (see coins of Levon I, Het‘um I, and Het‘um II).

Tram of King Het‘um I (1229–69), Silver, Armenian

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