Arab-Latin Coinage - Bilingual Gold Solidus From Spain, 98 AH / 716-717 CE

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First Composed: 27th February 2015

Last Modified: 28th February 2015

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Assalamu ʿalaykum wa rahamatullahi wa barakatuhu:

Arab-Latin bilingual gold solidus from Spain, 98 AH / 716-717 CE.


98 AH / 716-717 CE.


Obverse field: Eight pointed star in the middle. Obverse margin: FERITOSSOLIINSPANAN {= "FeRITOS SOLIdus IN SPANia ANno"} ("Solidus made in Spain in the Year (omitted)").

Reverse field: Muḥammad rasūl Allāh ("Muḥammad is the Messenger of God"). Reverse margin: ḍuriba hadhā al-dīnār bi-al-andalus sanat thamān wa tisʿīn ("In the name of God, this dīnār was struck in Al-Andalus the year 98").


Weight = 4.14 gms. It represents the first instance of the Arabic script being used in Muslim Spain. The Arabic legends are elegantly and correctly written while the Latin inscriptions are abbreviated and more coarsely executed. It is noteworthy that the year ‘98’ is clearly and completely rendered in Arabic, while the Roman numerals, which would denote the date in Latin characters, are in fact missing entirely from this particular die. It is difficult to escape the conclusion that the Arabic version was considered more important than the Latin by the issuing authorities. This coin was sold at Sotheby's auction and its description is taken from the catalogue.[2] Compare this solidus with the contemporary issue from Africa.


Private Collection.

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[1] J. Walker, A Catalogue Of The Arab-Byzantine And Post-Reform Umaiyad Coins, 1956, The Trustees Of The British Museum, p. 79, No. C.18.

[2] "Important Coins Of The Islamic World", Morton & Eden Ltd. (In Association With Sotheby's), 2014, Catalogue No. 69 (10 April 2014), Lot 6.

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