When the Muslims arrived on the peninsula, they immediately introduced a new monetary system based on the gold dinar, the copper falus and, above all, the silver dirham. Their first emissions were thick, coarse dinars inscribed in Latin, and soon also in Arabic, minted from 712 to pay troops during the conquest.
Although the first coins of the Islamic world were based on Byzantine and eastern models, Muslim religious tradition, which frowned on images, soon generated its own very distinctive types: pieces completely covered in Arabic script, with verses from the Qur’an and mentions of the ruler and his titles, the date and place of production.
This preference for the written word makes Hispano-Islamic coins genuine talking artefacts, thanks to which we can trace the territorial, religious and political changes from the birth of Al-Andalus until its disappearance in 1492.
In fact, the dinars from the conquest period are one of the few surviving records of early Hispano-Islamic history. They are also the first official dated documents to feature the symbol (a star) and the Arabic name that identified the new territory conquered for the Umayyad Caliphate: Al-Andalus.