Islamic Coin al-Walid ibn Abdel Malik Umayyad Silver Dirham Wasit Iraq 90 AH XF+
Description: A beautiful extremely fine or better Umayyad silver dirham struck in 90 AH (709 AD) during the reign of the Caliph al-Walid son of Abd al-Malik ibn Marwan. Al-Walid ruled the Islamic world in the period 86-96 AH (705-715 AD). Al-Walid's father Abd al-Malik is the Umayyad Caliph responsible for the reformed coinage in the Islamic world. This beautiful coin clearly shows the mint location being Wasit in current day Iraq and the year of minting being 90 AH. This is a nice coin that is very readable and displays a lustrous appearance with clear fields and light toning along the edges. The coin has a pleasing appearance and is much better than the photos suggest. Please carefully review the photos presented as they are part and parcel of our description.
Date: Struck 90 AH or 709 AD.
Mint: The coin clearly shows mint location being Wasit in current day Iraq.
Size and weight: This is a silver dirham, weighs ~2.9 grams and is ~26.3 mm in diameter.
References: It is Album 128, al-Ush #969, is listed in Lane Poole Catalogue of the Collection of Arabic Coins Preserved in the Khedivial Library in Cairo Egypt as #170 and is listed in Wilkes as 297.
Condition: I would grade this coin as extremely fine or better with a well centered strike having beautiful Calligraphy. The coin displays a lustrous appearance with clear fields and light toning along the edges. It has little wear making the beautiful calligraphy very readable and clear. 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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