The Gupta Empire ruled over a major part of India. But after the death of Gupta Emperor Samudragupta, the Gupta power in the north was shaken. During this time, the Hunas (also known as Hephthalites or White Huns) took the advantage and armed the forces against the northern rulers, winning few parts of present-day Jammu, Kashmir, Himachal, Rajasthan, Punjab, and Malwa.
However, the Hunas’ true invasion of India was in 458 AD. Skandagupta gave a tough battle and Hunas were defeated. Skandagupta passed away in 467 AD and taking the advantage of this the Huna ruler, Mihirkula attacked India in 470 AD and was successful in overthrowing the Gupta rule temporarily. Mihirkula could not rule India for a long time and died in 542 AD and gradually the power of Hunas declined in India. The Hunas are also known to have issued coins.
The featured coin in the image depicts the bust of king facing right, wearing an elaborate headdress, with diadem ties, solar disc at the apex and crescent moon; Trident-Vajradanda with pennants attached at the hilt. While the reverse has humped bull walking to the left, ceremonial ribbons tied to hump are seen fluttering above its tail with the Brahmi legend ‘Shri Mihirakula’ above. This is one of the first gold coins of the Hunas in India to have come to light. This was sold for INR 9,00,000 at Classical Numismatic Gallery.
Picture Courtesy: Classical Numismatic Gallery