210924 - Kingdom of Aksum or Axum – Silver coin of Endubis (ca. 270-290 A.D.).


Kingdom of Aksum

Pagan Period. Endubis (ca. 270-290 A.D.)

AR Unit (2.09 g.)



Bust of Endubis right, wearing headcloth ornamented on front; crescent above, dividing lettering.


Translation: "King Endubis". 


Bust of Endubis right, wearing headcloth ornamented on front; crescent above, dividing lettering.

Lettering: ΑΧωΜΙΤω ΒΙϹΙ ΔΑΧΥ 

Translation: "from the Aksumites of Dakhu".


Munro-Hay 2.


Condition see the photo's.

Endubis (c. 270 – c. 300) or Endybis was a late-3rd-century sovereign of the Kingdom of Aksum in East Africa (modern-day Ethiopia and Eritrea). He was among the earliest rulers in the Horn region to mint his own coins; the Aksumite currency of his reign was issued in gold and silver denominations and bore inscriptions in Koine Greek.


On the coins of Endubis so far recovered, either of two mottos were engraved. On some coins he described himself as "ΑΞΩΜΙΤΩ ΒΑϹΙΛΕΥϹ", "king of Axum". On others appeared the motto "ΒΙϹΙ ΔΑΧΥ", "bisi Dakhu"; this is the first appearance of the title "bisi", which S. C. Munro-Hay believes is related to the Ge'ez word "be'esya", "man of".[1]

The Kingdom of Aksum (also known as the Kingdom of Axum, or the Aksumite Empire) was an ancient kingdom in what is now northern Ethiopia and Eritrea. Ruled by the Aksumites, it existed from approximately 100 AD to 940 AD. The polity was centered in the city of Axum and grew from the proto-Aksumite Iron Age period around the 4th century BC to achieve prominence by the 1st century AD. It became a major player on the commercial route between the Roman Empire and Ancient India. The Aksumite rulers facilitated trade by minting their own Aksumite currency, with the state establishing its hegemony over the declining Kingdom of Kush. It also regularly entered the politics of the kingdoms on the Arabian Peninsula and eventually extended its rule over the region with the conquest of the Himyarite Kingdom. The Manichaei prophet Mani (died 274 AD) regarded Axum as one of the four great powers of his time, the others being Persia, Rome, and China.

The Aksumites erected a number of monumental stelae, which served a religious purpose in pre-Christian times. One of these granite columns is the largest such structure in the world, at 90 feet. Under Ezana (fl. 320-360) Aksum adopted Christianity. In the 7th century, early Muslims from Mecca sought refuge from Quraysh persecution by travelling to the kingdom, a journey known in Islamic history as the First Hijra. 

The kingdom's ancient capital, also called Axum, was in northern Ethiopia. The Kingdom used the name "Ethiopia" as early as the 4th century. Tradition claims Axum as the alleged resting place of the Ark of the Covenant and the purported home of the Queen of Sheba.