Epigraphy and Numismatics
Epigraphy is the study of inscriptions and ‘inscriptions’; literally means any writing engraved on some object. In India rocks as well as lithic, metallic, earthen or wooden pillars, tablets, plates and pots, as also bricks, shells, ivory plaques and other objects were generally used for incising inscriptions. Often writing in relief such as we find in the legends on coins and seals which are usually produced out of moulds or dyes, and also records painted on cave walls or written in ink on wooden tablets are regarded as inscriptions, although these writings are not actually engraved. The letters of certain late medieval records in the indigenous Indian alphabets are generally not engraved but are formed by scooping out the space around them.
Similarly, Numismatics , "to use according to law") is the study or collection of currency, including coins, tokens, paper money, and related objects. While numismatists are often characterized as students or collectors of coins, the discipline also includes the broader study of money and other payment media used to resolve debts and the exchange of goods Numismatics is the study of coins. It is important for the study of history, especially ancient history. It confirms, modifies and even amplifies history. To a great extent the political and economic history of a country is constructed by numismatics and historical facts are very often corroborated or rejected by numismatic findings. Many facts connected with administration, historical geography and religious history of ancient India are revealed to us by numismatics. Epigraphy and numismatics play a vital role in the reconstruction of Ancient Indian History because of the fact that unlike Greece, Rome or China, Ancient India has no history, because the Indians of antiquity did not care to leave written accounts of all their achievements. It is believed that Numismatics and epigraphy merely confirms history but seldom modifies or amplifies...
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