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Weight

Weight

  • Place of origin:

    Egypt (made)

  • Date:

    1036-1094 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Unknown

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Stamped blue glass

  • Museum number:

    360:22-1900

  • Gallery location:

    Glass, Room 131, case 85, shelf 4

People used coin weights such as this in Egypt under the Fatimid dynasty (969-1171). This example weighs 2.96 grammes and we think it was used to balance silver coinage weighing one dirham. It was produced in the reign of the caliph al-Mustansir (1036-1094). His personal and full regnal names appear between the titles Imam and Commander of the Faithful on the obverse. (This is the side of the coin that carries the main design.) The reverse of the coin is blank.

Physical description

Blue glass coin weight. Equates to the weight of a dirham.

Place of Origin

Egypt (made)

Date

1036-1094 (made)

Artist/maker

Unknown

Materials and Techniques

Stamped blue glass

Marks and inscriptions

'al-!imaam ma?add !abuu / tamiim al-mustanSir bi-/llaah !amiir al-mu!miniin'
'The Imam Ma'add Abu Tamim al-Mustansir bi-llah, Commander of the Faithful'
Arabic; Arabic; obverse; stamped

Dimensions

Diameter: 2.3 cm, Diameter: 1.6 cm of die, Weight: 2.96 g

Descriptive line

Blue coin weight, from the reign of the Fatimid Caliph al-Mustansir (1036-1094). Equates to the weight of a dirham. Egypt (Cairo)

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Balog, Paul, "Fatimid glass jetons: token currency or coin weights?", Annali, Istituto Italiano di Numismatica, 17-19 (1971-2): 175-264
Balog, Paul, "Fatimid glass jetons: token currency or coin weights?", Annali, Istituto Italiano di Numismatica, 20 (1973): 121-212
Contadini, Anna, Fatimid Art at the Victoria & Albert Museum. London: V&A Publications, 1998. p.108, plate 48d

Production Note

The Fatimid caliph al-Mustansir (ruled 1036-1094) is named in the inscription.

Materials

Glass

Techniques

Stamped

Categories

Islam; Africa

Collection

Ceramics Collection

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