Islamic Coin Umayyad Silver Dirham Hisham bin Abdel Malik 121 AH Wasit Iraq XF++
Description: Umayyad silver dirham struck in 121 AH (739 AD) during the reign of the Caliph Hisham Ibn Abd al-Malik. Hisham ruled the Islamic world in the period 105-125 AH (724-743 AD). His father Abd al-Malik is the Umayyad Caliph responsible for the reformed coinage in the Islamic world. This beautiful very fine or better coin clearly shows the mint location being Wasit in Iraq and the year of minting being 121 AH. The coin has light toning and retains some luster along the lettering. Please carefully review the photos presented as they are part and parcel of our description.
Date: Struck 121 AH or 739 AD.
Mint: The coin clearly shows mint location being Wasit in current day Iraq.
Size and weight: This is a silver dirham, weighs ~2.8 grams and is ~25 mm in diameter.
References: It is Album 137, is listed in Lane Poole Catalogue of the Collection of Arabic Coins Preserved in the Khedivial Library in Cairo Egypt as number 121, and is listed in Al'Ush Catalog of Islamic coins preserved in the national museum of Qatar as number 1000.
Condition: I would grade this coin as a good extremely fine or better with a well centered strike and beautiful Calligraphy. The coin has light toning mostly with some residual luster around the lettering. The coin has nice clear fields with a few minor scratches but other than that is problem free and looks much better than the photos suggest. It is just a high quality and great looking coin to add to your collection. Please see photo to appreciate the quality and condition of this beautiful coin.
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 compositions, 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.
We Also Recommend
"Rare" Book Islamic Art Museum Cairo Egypt Fatimid Coins Catalog, M. Daoud
1011 al-Mansuriya Islamic Coin Fatimid Gold Dinar Al-Hakim bi-Amr Allah 391AH
1013 Islamic Coin Cairo Egypt Fatimid Gold Dinar Al-Hakim bi-Amr Allah 403 AH
1014 Islamic Coin Cairo Egypt Fatimid 404H Gold Dinar Al-Hakim bi-Amr Allah VF