705 Islamic Coin Umayyad Silver Dirham Abdel Malik ibn Marwan Wasit 86 AH VF++
Date: Struck 86 AH or 705 AD.
Mint: The coin clearly shows mint location being Wasit.
Size and weight: This is a silver dirham, weighs ~2.9 grams and is ~27 mm in diameter. R
eferences: It is Album 126, it is listed in Al Ush book "Arab Islamic Coins Preserved im The National Museum of Qatar" as No. 965, and it is Wilkes No. 297.
Condition: I would grade this coin as a good very fine or much better with a wonderful and well centered strike having beautiful Calligraphy. The coin is lightly toned especially along the edges with some light luster in the center. The coin has minimum wear to the higher points but the calligraphy is still beautiful and very readable, clear, and well defined. The coin has some surface scratches and some bag marks. The coin is much better than the photos suggest. The coin is problem free, great looking, and is much better than the photos show. Definitely a high quality and beautiful coin. Please see photo for additional condition information.
Historic Perspective: The Muslim Arabs used existing gold and silver coinage in lands they conquered. At that time the nascent Islamic nation did not have a monetary system and did not strike neither gold nor silver coins, instead the conquering Arabs used the Byzantine monetary system already existing in Egypt for most of the gold coins and the Sassanian monetary system already existing in Iran for most silver coins with minor modifications. In 77 AH (699 AD) Abd al-Malik Ibn Marwan the Umayyad caliph instituted a monetary system and began striking the first Islamic coins including the gold Dinar and silver dirham. The dinar weighed 4.25 grams, or one mithqal, of the highest purity gold possible. The dirham weighed about 2.85 of the purest possible silver composition, which would maintain a solid coin. At the time the center of power and the main gold coin mint was located in Dimishq (current day Damascus in Syria), while silver coins were minted throughout the Muslim empire.
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