CRUSADERS. Christian Arabic Dirhams. Dirham (Silver, 20 mm, 2.92 g, 12 h), Akka (Acre), 1251. 'Allah wahid huwa, al-iman wahid, al-ma 'mudiyya wahid ('one God, one faith, one baptism') within double square; in outer margin, 'duriba bi-Akka / sana alf wa-/mi 'atayn wa-ahad / wa-khamsin l-tajassud al-Masih' ('struck in Acre in the year one thousand two hundred, one and fifty, of the Incarnation of the Messiah'); all in Arabic. Rev. 'Al-ab wa'l-ibn / wa'l-rih al qudus / ilah wahid' ('The Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, One Divinity') and two fleurs-de-lys within double square; in outer margin, 'lahu al-majd / ila abad / al-abadin / amin amin' ('His is the glory, forever and ever, amen, amen'); all in Arabic. Bates & Metcalf, 57. Malloy 17. Metcalf, Crusades, -. Wäckerlin 239 var. (fleurs-de-lys also on the obverse). Extremely rare and of great historical interest. Areas of weakness, otherwise, extremely fine.
From the Tabib Collection, formed over the past 40 years.
The appearance of the fleur-de-lys symbol on this extremely rare issue is very likely connected to the presence of Louis IX of France in Akkon, where he resided in 1250-1251 after his release from Mamluk captivity. Louis was the leader of the Seventh Crusade, in the course of which a large Christian force invaded Egypt in 1249, but he was utterly defeated and captured by the Mamluks in early 1250, who set him and his entourage free after 31 days for a colossal ransom of 200,000 gold bezants (see above, lot 599).