The Numismatic Bibliomania Society



The E-Sylum: Volume 26, Number 40, October 1, 2023, Article 14


The Derek Allen Prize is awarded annually by the British Academy in recognition of outstanding work by a scholar in musicology, numismatics, and Celtic studies, in rotation. This was a numismatic year, and the winner was author and researcher Joe Cribb. Congratulations! -Editor

History of the prize
The award commemorates Derek Fortrose Allen (1910–1975), elected a Fellow in 1963, who served from 1969 to 1973 as Secretary of the Academy and from then until his death as Treasurer. It was founded in 1976 by his widow, Mrs Winifred Allen, and her sons to provide an award in one of three academic fields in which Mr Allen had particular interest. The prize was first awarded in 1977.

2023 winner

Joe Cribb Professor Joe Cribb has been awarded the 2023 Derek Allen Prize for his outstanding contribution to the discipline of numismatics. In particular for his expertise and wide range in Asian numismatics, from the Far East via South and Southeast Asia to the Greek and later coinages of Bactria. His focus on the coinage of the Kushans and their successors, the Kushano-Sasanians and Kidarites, has led to a greatly improved understanding of the history of Afghanistan and adjacent regions in the early centuries CE.

Joe Cribb is a specialist in the monetary history of Asia. He worked as a curator of Asian currencies at the British Museum for forty years before retiring 2010 as the Head of its Department of Coins and Medals. Throughout his career he has been committed to making the Museum's numismatic collections internationally accessible and to training young numismatists from around the world. Since his retirement he has become an adjunct professor of numismatics at Hebei Normal University, Shijiazhuang, and a trustee of the Ancient Indian and Iran Trust, Cambridge

He has authored and edited books on Chinese, Indonesian and Central and South Asian currencies and history, and introductory books on coins. He has also written many articles on Asian coins and numismatic practice. He has curated major exhibitions at the British Museum and Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge University. He is former President of the Royal Numismatic Society, London, and former Secretary General of the Oriental Numismatic Society.

His contributions to numismatics have been recognized by the medals of the Royal Numismatic Society, London, the American Numismatic Society, New York and the Indian Numismatic Society, Varanasi. He has also been honoured by Hebei Normal University, the Ashmolean Museum, the Institute of Silk Road Studies, Kamakura, and the Austrian Numismatic Society, Vienna.

Joe's current research is on the Kushan dynasty in Central and South Asia, the history of numismatic research in Japan and the relationship between money and art.

I am delighted to be the recipient of the Derek Allen Prize, established in memory of one of Britain's most important numismatic scholars. I feel honoured to be included in the list of eminent numismatic colleagues who have received this award. Numismatics is a collaborative discipline and I know that what I have achieved could not have been done without the support and friendship of many eminent scholars in this field. I can only name a few who deserve my particular thanks, my colleagues at the British Museum: Helen Wang, Elizabeth Errington, Vesta Curtis, Robert Bracey, Wannaporn Rienjang, Shailendra Bhandare, Andrew Burnett, and the late Nicholas Lowick and Martin Price, and to Dai Jianbing (Hebei Normal University), Nicholas Sims-Williams (Ancient India and Iran Trust), David Jongeward (Toronto), Gul Rahim Khan and Nasim Khan (University of Peshawar); I also have a debt of gratitude for the support of my late wife Margaret and our dear children and grandchildren and of my partner Linda Crook.

I am greatly encouraged by the receipt of this award to continue to push forward my research and to promote the importance of numismatics as a discipline, particularly for Asian history, and thank the Academy for this honour.

- Professor Joe Cribb, August 2023

To read the complete article, see:
Derek Allen Prize (

See also:
Joe Cribb is the 2023 Derek Allen Prize Winner (


LIBERTY SEATED SILVER COINS. The new 2nd edition of Q. David Bowers's Guide Book of Liberty Seated Silver Coins is available now. 608 pages of fascinating Bowers-style coverage of half dimes, dimes, twenty-cent pieces, quarters, half dollars, Gobrecht dollars, silver dollars, and trade dollars. Order your copy online at , or call 1-800-546-2995.

Wayne Homren, Editor

NBS ( Web

The Numismatic Bibliomania Society is a non-profit organization promoting numismatic literature. See our web site at

To submit items for publication in The E-Sylum, write to the Editor at this address:

To subscribe go to:



Copyright © 1998 - 2023 The Numismatic Bibliomania Society (NBS)
All Rights Reserved.

NBS Home Page
Contact the NBS webmaster