Ayyubid Bronze (AE) Coin Beautiful Dirham Sinjar Mint al-Ashraf I Muzaffar al-Din Musa 617 AH / 1220 AD F++
Description: Nice and heavy Bronze AE dirham from al-Ashraf Musa, Ayyubid ruler from the Mayyafariqin & Sinjar branch. Al-Ashraf Musa ruled in the period 607-617 AH (1210 - 1220 AD). His full name being, Al-Ashraf Muzaffar al-Din Abu al-Fath Musa ibn Al-Adil I. The coin shows a turbaned prince seated with the right leg drawn up and holding an orb in left hand with his right hand on his hip on the obverse. The obverse also shows the words al Malik al-Ashraf and the rest is not legible and shows the date as 617 AH with the word Sinjar before the date all surrounding the sitting prince. The reverse shows a square with a legend within. The legend says "al-Imam al-Naser L'din Allah Amir al-Muaminin al-malik al-Kamel Mohammad." The coin has extensive wear but the date and mint are still discernible as is the legend on the reverse. Both the design and the date are indication of al-Ashraf's era. Please carefully review the scan presented as it is part and parcel of our description.
Date: The coin was minted in 617 AH or 1220 AD the last year of al-Ashraf's reign.
Size and Weight: This is a dirham, weighs ~10.3 grams and is ~23.5 mm in diameter.
References: It is Album #859.2 and listed in Balog as 854.
Condition: I would grade this coin as a good fine or much better. It has a very well defined figure on the obverse and the date as well as the mint are readable. Additionally, the legend on the obverse is very readable. The coin has a beautiful earthen green and brown patina. Please note the coin itself is better than the scan shows with very well defined figure and legible calligraphy. A definite quality coin. Please see scan for additional condition information.
Historic Prespective: The Ayyubids were one of the great Islamic dynasties. The dynasty was founded by al-Nasir Salah al-Din Yusuf I (Saladin) in AH 564/1169 AD and ruled in Egypt and Syria until falling to the Mamluks in the mid 7th century AH. The Ayyubids are of Kurdish origins. Saladin and his brother Shirquah were recruited among others by the Zangid Nur Al-Din. Shirquah gained control over Egypt from the fatimids, and died almost immediately, leaving his nephew Salah El-Din Ibn Ayyub as his successor and soon was recognized by his troops. Saladin (probably the most respected figure of the middle ages by both friends and foes) was the real founder of the Dynasty. With his victory at Hittin in 583 AH/ 1187 AD, the holy city of Jerusalem was liberated from the crusaders and great event in Muslim history. He extinguished the last Fatimids of Egypt and replaced the Isma’ili Shiism by a strongly Orthodox Sunni religious and educational policy.
Al-Adil Abu Bakr I was the younger brother of Salah al-Din (Saladin). He ruled after the direct descendants of Saladin completed their rule and died. He was succeeded by his son al-Kamil Mohammad. He was governor of parts of Syria and Turkey for a period of 6 years then became the Sultan of Egypt and Syria and ruled for 19 years.
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