Arabic Calligraphy
Civilisation of the Word
‘Calligraphy appears on nearly every kind of media one can think of.’
Because the power of the word is respected in Islamic culture, whether verbal or transcribed, recitation and writing have been given a lot of attention both in Arabic-speaking and non-Arabic-speaking Islamic societies. This has encouraged an appreciation of calligraphy – meaning literally ‘beautiful writing’ – and in turn promoted the application of the art onto a variety of media, both for religious and secular use. Calligraphy appears on architecture, books, coinage and metal wares, official documents and tiraz textiles, ceramics, wood, ivory, stone and glass, and nearly every other kind of media one can think of.
Coin (dinar)

Hegira 537 / AD 1142
National Museum of Antiquities and Islamic Arts
Algiers, Algeria
This Almoravid (454–541 / 1062–1147) dinar has kufic inscriptions, citing quotes from the Qur'an on one side, and giving the date, place and patron of the mint on the reverse.