The Qurra Papyrus - Order For Payment By The People Of The Monastery Of Saint Mary - Egyptian National Library Inv. No. 333, 91 AH / 710 CE

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First Composed: 20th December 2005

Last Modified: 21st December 2005

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Assalamu ʿalaykum wa rahamatullahi wa barakatuhu:



Figure: (a) Picture of the papyrus and (b) the content of the papyrus.

[] encloses letters supplied to fill a lacuna.


Ṣafar, 91 AH / December - January, 710 CE.


7 cm x 20 cm. Light brown, tolerably fine papyrus. The Arabic text is written on the recto in the black ink by the hand of Rāshid at right angles to the horizontal fibres, diacritical points are added sparingly. Verso blank. Broken off on all sides and worm-eaten in the middle. At the top, remainders of the Greek minute, in rust coloured ink, are preserved.

Accession No.

Inv. No. 333.


The translation is given below. The Greek text is in italics:

  1. [Monastery of Saint] Mary. [Solidi 30 ⅙].
  2. [In] the name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful.
  3. This is a letter from Qurra bin Sharīk to the people
  4. of Orōs Maria belonging to the eastern villages. Verily, it has fallen upon you (as your part)
  5. of the gold-tax of the year eighty-eight, thirty counted dīnārs and a sixth
  6. ...... of a dīnār; and Rāshid has written (it) in Ṣafar
  7. [of the year ninety-one].


Egyptian National Library, Cairo, Egypt.

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[1] L. Caetani, Annali Dell'Islām, 1912, Volume V, Ulrico Hoepli: Milano, Plate facing p. 320.

[2] A. Grohmann, Arabic Papyri In The Egyptian Library, Volume III (Administrative Texts), 1938, Egyptian Library Press: Cairo, No. 162, pp. 52-53.

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