An Inscription From Kos About An Expedition Against Infidels, 99 AH / 718-719 CE

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First Composed: 18th April 2014

Last Modified: 18th April 2014

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Assalamu ʿalaykum wa rahamatullahi wa barakatuhu:




Figure (a) original inscription, (b) its transcription and (c) its contents.


99 AH / 718-719 CE.


Not known.


Kufic script.


The translation of the inscription is:

  1. ... and they.... ʿAṭāʾ b. Sʿad al-....
  2. ... infidels during expedition of ....
  3. ... in the year nine and ninety.
  4. The help of God and the glorious
  5. victory (?)....


This interesting inscription from Kos in Greece refers to the expedition against the mushrikīn (probably Byzantine Christians). However, due to the fragmentary nature of inscription it is hard to decipher the context and content fully. Notice the presence of the phrase naṣr Allāh wa l-fatḥ al-ʿaẓīm which corresponds quite closely with the verse idhā jāʾa naṣr Allāh wa l-fatḥ (Sūrah al-Naṣr, verse 1). Furthermore, the word gazwa (expedition, raid) is also to be found in a very similar context in a graffito in Cnide (Turkey).


Kos, near Psalidi (Greece).

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[1] F. Imbert, "Graffiti Arabes De Cnide Et De Kos: Premières Traces Épigraphiques De La Conquête Musulmane En Mer Égée", Travaux Et Mémoires, 2013, Volume 17, pp. 746-747.

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