Arab Latin

Gold Bilingual globular Solidus/Dinar

Obverse

In field: la ilah i/lla Allah “no deity other than God” (in Arabic Kufic script and Latin capital letters)

In margin within serrate circle: SOL FER IN AFR AN XCVIII (= 98) “solidus struck in Africa in the year 98”

Reverse

In field: Muhammad ra/sul Allah “Muhammad is the messenger of God”

In margin within circle: NON EST DEUS NISI DEUS IPSE “no god but God Himself”

Bilingual gold coins bearing both Arabic and Latin inscriptions were struck in Africa, where the Latin influence was far stronger than it was in the east, and then in Spain. Their striking marked an important development in the growing Arab control over the two territories. Up to this time the inscriptions would have been accepted by both Christians and Muslims, but this changed fundamentally with the addition of the words of the short kalima – “no deity other than God, Muhammad is the messenger of God”. In addition, the Islamic legends are inscribed with clarity compared to the crude style of the Latin, which the Muslims considered to be an inferior language to their own. Once more, coins of this type are very rare as they were superseded by the early reform-style coinage from Damascus.

Arab Latin

MaterialGold
TypeBilingual globular Solidus/Dinar
RulerAnonymous
MintUnknown
Date98H / 716-717CE
Weight4.26g
Diameter14mm