A local team from the Sharjah Archaeology Authority has discovered several old Islamic coins in the central region of Sharjah, consisting of rare silver dirhams dating back to the Abbasid Dynasty.
The coins bear the iconography of five caliphs from the period, Caliph Abu Jaafar Al Mansour, Caliph Mohamed Al Mahdi, Caliph Haroun Al Rashid, Caliph Mohamed Al Amin and Caliph Abu Jaafar Abdullah Al Maamoun. They also include a silver “dirham-link” of Lady Zubaida (Umm Jaafar), the wife of Haroun Al Rashid. A copper Abbasid fils was also found.
Dr. Sabah Aboud Jasim, Director-General of the Authority, said that the discovery confirms the early presence of the Abbasid Dynasty in the region, noting that some coins were found in an Abbasid-style pottery jar dating back to the 9th-10th Century AD.
The coins were minted in several geographical and administrative areas, during the years 154-199 of the Hijri period, AH, (late 8th to early 9th Century AD). They include coins from Morocco (Al Abbasiya 154-166 AH), Persia (Kura Al Mahdiya 154 AH), Al-Rai (Al-Jibal) province (Al Muhammadiya City 192 AH), the Khorasan Region (182,186 and 194 AH), Armenia (191 AH) and Transoxiana (190, 198 and 199 AH).
The discovery documents a pivotal period in the history of Sharjah and the UAE during the Abbasid Dynasty, highlighting the commercial activity that took place in the UAE and in Sharjah’s central region.
The coins, which travelled along several key trade routes to the Arabian Gulf and the UAE, confirm that the region was an important trading centre during that period.