Author Topic: Sicilian rebel Muhammad b. Abbad  (Read 73 times)

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Offline Pellinore

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Sicilian rebel Muhammad b. Abbad
« on: January 13, 2018, 12:18:24 AM »
Here's a nice little coin dating from 1220-1222, during the reign of Frederick II of Hohenstaufen, who was nominally king of Sicily from 1198, when he was four years old. Frederick however was a great personality who took Sicily very seriously. When the Normans conquered Sicily, the large Muslim population kept its own voice, but in the course of time their social status gradually diminished and they lost prestige. More and more, the talented muslims grew to be either civil servants or soldiers, often part of the bodyguard of the king. In that way, they lost popularity and freedom.
There were uprisings, and this is a coin from Entella, a small enclave, only a valley near what's now Corleone in the western inlands of Sicily, where Muhammad bin Abbad, the leader of the people asserted himself as 'Prince of muslims' and started minting his own coins. Unsightly litlle billon denars or kharrubas, but still - Frederick didn't tolerate this, he submitted Muhammad bin Abbad and eventually had him executed. That was that.

And here's one of these small coins. 14 mm, 0.61 gr. Minted in Entella or Monte Jato. It is D'Andrea 190, with the Kalima on the obverse and 'Muhammad bin Abbad, Prince of muslims' on the reverse. On Zeno you may find better photos. My pic is not super, in hand it's a bit better. Not a beauty, but a drop of fascinating history.

-- Paul

Offline THCoins

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Re: Sicilian rebel Muhammad b. Abbad
« Reply #1 on: January 13, 2018, 10:58:00 AM »
Would i have picked this out if it was in a box of unattributed coins ? No. But coupled with the background story this is one of those little historical treasures that makes collection special. Thanks for showing !

Offline Figleaf

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Re: Sicilian rebel Muhammad b. Abbad
« Reply #2 on: January 13, 2018, 02:15:53 PM »
I am fascinated by the Normans in Southern Italy, Sicily and North Africa. The story of this coin is new to me, but another angle on how, for a brief moment, Muslims and Christians could live together even in pretty intolerant times. TFP!

An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.