Buwayhid of Iraq & Iran

Silver Medallion “Dinar”

Obverse

In field within double pointillate circle: mukhlisan/la ilah illa Allah/Muhammad rasul Allah/amir al-Umara/al-Sayyad abu-Talib/bin Fakhr al-dawla/wa falak al-umma/Buwayh “in friendship, no deity but God, Muhammad is the messenger of God, lord of the princes, al-Sa’id abu-Talib bin Fakhr al-dawla, celestial sphere of the people, Buwayh”

In margin within pointillate circle: bism Allah duriba hadha’l-dinar bi’l-Muhammadiya sana saba’ wa thamanin wa thalath mi’a al-hijra “in the name of God this dinar was struck in al-Muhammadiya year seven and eighty and three hundred the Hijra”

Reverse

In field: qul huwa/Allah ahad Allah/al-samad lam yalid wa/lam yulid wa lam yakun/lahu kufuan ahad/al-Ta‘i’ lillah “Say, God is One, God is Eternal, He does not beget nor is He begotten and there is none like unto Him” Surah CXII (al-Ikhlas)/al-Ta‘i’ lillah

In margin: Muhammad rasul Allah arsalahu bi’l-huda wa-din al-haqq li-yuzhirahu ‘ala al-din kullihi wa law kariha al-mushrikun “Muhammad is the messenger of God who sent him with guidance and the religion of truth that he might make it supreme over all other religions, even though the polytheists may detest it” Surah IX (al-Tauba) v. 33

Obverse and reverse outer margins: crescents at 12:00, 3:00, 6:00 and 9:00 with good luck words at 2:00, 4:00, 7:00 and 10:00

Abu Talib Rustam (later given the title Majd al-dawla, meaning “Glory of the State”) succeeded his father, Fakhr al-Dawla in 387 H/997 CE when he was only eleven years old. The power of the state was exercised by the regent, his wily mother, Sayyida (“Respected Lady”) bint Rustam ibn Sharwin, who protected his inheritance for thirty years, dying one year before he did in 419/1028. Abu-Talib’s reign began dramatically, and the treasury was locked up in the castle of Tabarak where Fakhr al-dawla had died, and there was no money to pay the troops. Rioting in the streets cut the people off from the rest of the town of al-Muhammadiya, and Tabarak from the rest of the town, preventing Sayyida from handing over the money, or even providing a winding sheet for her late husband. Eventually the money and the coffin were lowered from the citadel with ropes. This beautiful largesse coin, with the word mukhlisan (“in friendship”) above the obverse legend, was probably intended as a public relations tool with which to win over the troops to the side of the new ruler.

Buwayhid of Iraq & Iran

MaterialSilver
TypeMedallion “Dinar”
RulerAbu-Talib Rustam bin Fakhr al-dawla (387-389 H/997-999 CE), as Majd al-dawla (389-420 H/999-1029 CE)
Mintal-Muhammadiya (al-Rayy, now Teheran, in northern Iran)
Date387 H (997 CE)
Weight11.08g
Diameter42mm