DVxMxD aAFa; Genoese coat of arms / Very crude arabic inscription, probably a corruption of al-Sultan al-adil Daulat, Jujid tamgha with a dot in the center. 16mm, 0.70 grams. Mint of Caffa (modern Theodosia , Ukraine). Retowski #157.
High quality coin - most of these coins are poorly struck, with large flat areas. This is the "3rd type" of Retowski (coins 205-256), with a very corrupt arabic inscription. The inscription is quite illegible, and Retowski could not read the name of the reigning Khan on them. The words "al-Sultan al-adil" are unreadable, but can be recognized from their overall shape. The name of the Khan is illegible, but it is certainly not "Mohamed" - it looks much more like a corruption of "Daulat", without "Birdi" or Khan".
The appearance of Italian traders on the Black Sea dates back to the beginning of XIII century. Genoese colonization of the Black Sea coast started in 60-70s of the XIII century. Caffa became the very first and then the most important Genoese colony, founded at the location of ancient Theodosia. It was ruled by consuls. At that time Caffa was located in the middle of the trade routes between the East and Western Europe, which led to its rapid growth and prosperity. The existence of Caffa was interrupted in 1308 by the Golden Horde Khan Toqtu. Only when a new Khan Uzbek (1312-1342) was crowned had the Genoese reappeared on the Black Sea coast. The period after the reestablishment of the Caffa colony up until the end of the XIV century had become the heyday of the city. By the middle of the XIV century Caffa had become a powerful fortress, and during the XIV-XV centuries it was known as the Queen of the Black Sea. The consul of Caffa was also the head of all Genoese Black Sea possessions. The colony was finally destroyed by the Ottoman Empire in 1475.