The Proceedings of the 5th Simone Assemani Symposium on Islamic coins collect the various contributions with the unifying subject proposed for the meeting: Islamic money in the archaeological contexts (Syria, Egypt, Lebanon, Israel, Tajikistan, Poland, on the plains of western Russia and in Georgia, Sicily or Spain), problems, methods, documentary value for the economic history from the Umayyad period to the Mamluks. The numismatic documentation should be also the outcome of recent investigations in the archives, i.e. the project “Fontes Inediti Numismaticae Orientalis”, acronym FINO. The opening of a line of research on the history of collecting and studies of Islamic numismatics should strive for an interdisciplinary approach beyond merely classificatory aspects and at the same time a sort of resistance to the danger of considering the numismatics of the Islamic world as secondary, marginal, with respect to the money of the “classical” world. The confirmation of an undeclared inter-disciplinarity appears, e.g., in the paper The Nani Collection of Arabic Coins through unpublished documents & drawings by Jean François Champollion (1790-1832).
Bruno Callegher, his scientific interests can be defined with in two major research ambits, one relating to Roman coin finds in North-Eastern Italy, the other regarding Byzantine coinage. He has been Keeper at the ‘Museo Bottacin’ in Padua and since 2006 associate professor of Numismatics at the University of Trieste.
Arianna D’Ottone Rambach is Associate Professor of Arabic Language and Literature at the Institute of Oriental Studies, Sapienza-University of Rome, and Junior Research Fellow at Sapienza School for Advanced Studies (SSAS). Her numismatic research is focused on Italian collections of Arabic coins, on the Rasulid coinage (Yemen) and on Arabic glass jetons.
In February 2015, divers off the coast of Caesarea spotted by chance a group of gold coins lying on the seabed. After alerting marine archaeologists of the Israel Antiquities Authority, a preliminary salvage excavation was conducted at the site and more than 2,600 Fatimid period gold dinars and fractions recovered, weighing a total of c. 7.5 kg. The coin's location and accompanying artifacts suggested that the coins originated from a shipwreck. The article gives a first insight into the hoard's content after two years of intensive identification work, presents some preliminary conclusions as for the reasons for its loss and offers some new insights into the circulation of Fatimid coinage in southern Bilad al-Sham.
The present article focuses on the numismatic finds by the Uzbek-Italian Archaeological Program “Samarkand and Its Territory” in the Sogdian and early Islamic site of Kafir Kala (Uzbekistan). The overall number of coins discovered at Kafir Kala amounts to 178. The major part of them came from the citadel. Beside many Sogdian copper coins of the 7th and first half of the 8th century, the most important discovery was an Abbasid dīnār and a hoard of 132 dirhams. The coins are described in their stratigraphic context. Kafir Kala represents a very important case-study for the comprehension of the changes in the monetary circulation in Sogdiana at the beginning of the Islamic expansion in Central Asia.
This research is concerned in publishing and studying a rare Samanid dinar struck in Mohammedia in 341 A.H., bearing the name of prince Noah Bin Nasser (331-343 A.H), and preserved in the private collection of Mr. Mohammed Omar Nato in Holy Mecca. This dinar is firstly to be published and studied through this research; which is concerned in describing the general shape of it, by clarifying its inscriptions and decorative motives, then analyzing its inscriptions and relating it to the different circumstances, especially striking Al-Mostakfy’s name on it, despite his isolation in 334 A.H., which is seven years earlier than the date of the dinar under study. Besides, the reasons of minting Surat Al-Ikhlas complete on the field of the reverse. The published Samanid coins bearing Surat Al-Ikhlas were determined, and they are: a dinar struck in Mohammedia in 333 A.H. preserved in the Islamic Art Museum in Cairo, and a dirham struck in Samarkand in 357 A.H. under the name of prince Noah Bin Nasser (350-366 A.H.), published by Shabaan Kinawy, and a comparison between them and the dinar under study was made, regarding the prototype, the inscriptions, the date and circumstances of struck. Besides, another comparison between the dinar under study, and the Samanid and Buwayhid dinars struck in Mohammedia was made to clarify the differences between them and the uniqueness of the dinar under study. Thus, it is obvious that the published Samanid dinar and dirham bearing Surat Al-Ikhlas along with the dinar under study were struck during the time of the military conflict between the Samanids and the Buwaihids, which ended in 361 A.H. by reconciliation. So, in light of the above, the dinar under study is unique in its prototype, date and circumstances of struck, which firstly to be published and studied, thus, it represents a new addition to the Sammanid coins in general, and the coins of Noah Bin Nasser in particular.
The aim of the study is to investigate the presence of a relatively large number of copper fulūs struck in al-Baṣra in the year 136H. (only this one year, while earlier dates of the same issue are not found) among the excavation coins from al-Ruṣāfa and certain sites along the al-Khābūr river in Syria. Lutz Ilisch had discussed the phenomenon briefly in 1996. The present study adds more historical information and new sites of such finds, which strengthen new theories. The relations between the conflict of the Abbasid counter caliph Abdullah b. ‘Alī with Abū Muslim on one side and the import of these fulūs on the other side, is discussed on the assumption that normally such fulūs would have been without value outside of their original area of issue and circulation.
During the pioneering studies on Islamic coins, one of the most controversial and difficult to understand themes was to explain the simultaneous presence of Christian symbols alongside Islamic ones, such as the name of the prophet or the shahada (one of the Five Pillars of Islam). Over the centuries some issues were correctly attributed to the Urtukids, others remained unexplained, such as those now attributed to the Arab-Byzantine series. The orientalists of the late eighteenth century, including Simone Assemani, remained elaborated only erudite and uncertain explanations, far from a correct reading of what was legible on the coins. Gaetano Cattaneo, the curator of the numismatic collections in Milan, was the first who identified the exact classification of these coins, thanks to a follis/fals of the Tiberias mint, coming from a Venetian collection dispersed in the trade market in Milan.