The monetary history of a country provides important insights into its economic development, as well as its political and social history. This book is the first detailed study of Iran's monetary history from the advent of the Safavid dynasty in 1501 to the end of Qajar rule in 1925. Using an array of previously unpublished sources in ten languages, the authors consider the specific monetary conditions in Iran's modern history, covering the use of ready money and its circulation, the changing conditions of the country's mints and the role of the state in managing money. Throughout the book, the authors also consider the larger regional and global economic context within which the Iranian economy operated. As the first study of Iran's monetary history, this book will be essential reading for researchers of Iranian and economic history.
Rudi Matthee is Professor of History at University of Delaware. He is the author of Persia in Crisis: Safavid Decline and the Fall of Isfahan (I.B.Tauris) and The Pursuit of Pleasure: Drugs and Stimulants in Iranian History, 1500-1900. Willem Floor is an independent scholar specialising in the history of Iran in the Safavid and modern ages. His publications include A Social History of Sexual Relations in Iran; Iran and the World in the Safavid Age (with Edmund Herzig, eds, I.B.Tauris); Labor and Industry in Iran, 1850-1941 and The Persian Gulf: A Political and Economic History of Five Port Cities 1500-1730. Patrick Clawson is Deputy Director of Research at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy and senior editor of Middle East Quarterly.
Introduction Chapter One: The Monetary System during the Safavid Period: Money, Metals and Minting Introduction II.Limits on the Use of Money and the Scarcity of Current Coin Scarcity of Current Coin Minting Coins i Mints ii Technical Process iii Gold iv copper v Silver vi Local Currency Systems VI. Arbitrage Chapter Two: The Trade in Bullion in Safavid Times I. Introduction II. Government Policy until 1669 III. Restrictive Measures in the Period 1669-1684 IV. Developments after 1684 Chapter Three: The Politics of Minting Introduction Weight Reductions Monetary Matters under Shah Sulayman The Monetary Crisis of 1684-85 Developments after 1685 Chapter Four: The Monetary System under the Afsharids and Zands, 1732-1794. The Age of Copper Introduction Ghilzay Afghan Period (1722-1729) Last Safavids (1722-1736) Afsharid period (1736-1750) Afsharid Successors (1747-1750) Zand Period (1759-1794) Chapter Five. The Monetary System under the Qajars, 1779-1925 I. Minting Coins A. Traditional Mints. i. Running the mints. ii. The production process B. Reducing the Metal Content of Coins C. A Modern National Mint II. Fragmented Currency System i. Overview: Measuring Value in a Three-Metal System ii. Local Currencies Other than the National Standard iii. Copper Coins iv. Silver Coins v. Gold Coins vi. Limited Use of Money in Trade III. Supply of Bullion and Specie i. Local Production of Bullion ii. Importing Bullion IV. Silver's Loss of Value i. Adjusting Ratios among Coins ii. Switching to a Gold Standard? V. Paper Currency i. IBP's Practices ii. Limits to Acceptance of Paper Currency VI. Money at the End of the Qajar Dynasty Afterword Bibliography Index