|During the 30’s of the 6th century B.C. Ustrushana was conquered by the Persian king Kir II (558-529 BC) and for some time paid a tribute to the Achaemenids. In order to strengthen the northeastern borders of the empire, king Kir erected 7 frontier fortresses, around which subsequently cities would appear, with the principal one – Kiropol.|
Ustrushana was the outermost limit of Central Asia, where the army of Alexander the
Great had penetrated (in 329 B.C.). In the annals of history it has been noted that here
he destroyed seven cities and in 17 days had erected a new city Alexandria Eskhata
(Khojend). In the mountains of Ustrushana he was severely wounded.|
After Alexander’s death, Ustrushana, based on right of inheritance, became a part of the Seleukid state. In 4th – 5th centuries A.D. Ustrushana became an independent possession.
Since the 6th century A.D., under kagan Istemi (died in 575 A.D.), Ustrushana, like other Central Asian lands up to the limits of the “Iron Gates”, became subject to the Turks. Her kings wore a traditional title – “Afshin”, which likely is a variation of the name of the Turkic city Ashin, named after the unifier of the Turks in the 5th century A.D.. Through the territory of Ustrushana passed the northern path of the Great Silk Route from Sogdiana through Ustrushana into Chach, and further, through the Tien Shan Mountains or steppes, into the Eastern Turkestan. Location along the path of the Great Silk Route contributed to the development of economy, crafts, trade and monetary circulation.
Names of rulers of Ustrushana did not reach us in written sources; only coins had preserved them.
These extremely rare coins had also brought us the iconographic form, hereditary symbols-tamghas of the ruling families. The first of the known rulers, afshins, was Chirdmish, whose name means “Descended from Mitra”. On the coins, Chirdmish is depicted, like other afshins, wearing a winged crown, dating to the images of the royal crown of Sassanid Iran. Peculiar to his coins is the position of the head, characteristic to the Buddhist iconography. On coins of Satachari III, instead of the head of the ruler, an elephant and an inscription “Master Satachari” are depicted. Elephant-like Indian god Ganesh not only embodies wisdom, but was also a patron of trade.
Coins of Ustrushana incorporate symbolism of three great religions – Zoroastrianism, Buddhism and Christianity. Coins with Islamic symbols started to be issued in Ustrashana in 279 AH/892 A.D. (fals of amir Sayar b.Abd'Allah).
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