temp. Harun al-Rashid, ‘Abbasid Caliph AH 170-193/AD 786-809

Bernardi 51; BMC I, 145; A 218.2, Mint State

Mintless early type (probably Madinat al-Salam), without caliph’s name or symbol. Kalima at center, Qur’an 9:33 in margin; Reverse, continuation of Kalima, date formula in margin.


Harun al-Rashid (AH 170-193/ AD 786-809) is perhaps the most famous of all ‘Abbasid Caliphs. He is the king portrayed in the legendary collection of stories known as the “Arabian Nights” or “One Thousand and One Nights”, narrated by the storyteller Scheherazade. These stories have become the subject of many classical music pieces by composers such as Tchaikovsky and Rimsky-Korsakov. Harun al-Rashid’s reign marks the zenith of the Abbasid Caliphate. Harun was contemporary with Charlemagne and established diplomatic relations with him.