Important Islamic Gold Coin From The 1st Century Of The Hijra Sells For £168,000

Lot 34 in the Morton & Eden June 12 sale, Umayyad, 'Abd al-Malik bin Marwan (65-86h; AD 685-705), Arab-Byzantine solidus, circa 72-74h, brings historic price.

by CDN Publishing | Published on June 14, 2024

An Islamic gold coin measuring just 20mm in diameter and weighing 4.27g sold at auction with Morton & Eden in London on 12 June 2024 for £168,000 (including buyer’s premium).

The extremely rare coin which was the highlight of the auction was struck around AH 72-74 (CE 691-694) and was estimated to fetch £150,000-200,000. Ultimately the caliph established a purely epigraphic Islamic coinage in AH 77 (CE 697) and coins like this one were demonetised and supposed to be destroyed.

Tom Eden of Morton & Eden commented, “The price realised reflected its importance. It had in the past been assumed to be a standard and inexpensive Byzantine issue. It survived probably because at some stage it was mounted in a jewellery setting. Coins like this were supposed to be handed in and melted following the introduction of the first purely Islamic dinars in AH 77.

"Its historical and religious importance lies in the fact that it is the very first gold coin to bear the words of the Shahada (“In the name of Allah there is no God but Allah. He is unique. Mohammed is the Messenger of Allah.”) in order to spread the tenets of Islam as well as rejecting the Christian belief in the Trinity”.

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Source: CDN Publishing

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