Roman connections of the Chera Kings

An ancient coin of the Chera kings made of silver, with the portrait of a Chera king wearing a Roman-type bristled-crown helmet has been found on the riverbed of the Amaravathi near Karur in Tamil Nadu.

While the portrait is found on the obverse side of the coin, its reverse shows traces of "bow and arrow," the symbol of the Chera dynasty

"There are so many proofs to show that the Romans had trade contacts with the Tamils, especially with the Chera country. From the later part of the first century B.C. there was a big trade contact between Romans and the Chera kings. This [coin] clearly establishes that the Roman soldiers had landed in the Chera country to give protection to the Roman traders who had come there to buy materials. A Chera king with a Roman helmet is important."

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