Professor Noonan here sets out to examine what Islamic silver coins (dirhams) reveal about the great trade between the Islamic world, European Russia, and the Baltic during the early Viking Age. Particular attention is devoted to the origins of this international commerce and the role of such peoples as the Vikings and Khazars. As he shows, the study of these coins also throws new light on mint output in the ’Abbasid caliphate, the historical significance of specific dirham hoards, and how the patterns of trade evolved during the course of the ninth century.
Table of Contents
Contents: Introduction; Why the Vikings first came to Russia; Why dirhams first reached Russia: the role of Arab-Khazar relations in the development of the earliest Islamic trade with Eastern Europe; 9th-century dirham hoards from European Russia: a preliminary analysis; The regional composition of 9th-century dirham hoards from European Russia; A 9th-century dirham hoard from Devitsa in southern Russia; Early ’Abba-sid mint output; Index.
'...of the greatest importance for those interested in coin circulation in the Middle East as well as in Russia and the Viking world..our knowledge of the extensive trade between the Abbasid caliphate, the Vikings, and the Khazars in medieval Rus in the eight and ninth centuries is derived almost exclusively from the numismatic evidence...this book is an excellent example of how in-depth numismatic analysis can shed light on areas beyond the coins examined.' Religious Studies Review, Vol. 25, No. 3 'Thomas S. Noonan stands virtually alone in studying these coins as both numismatist and general historian. That six of his most important studies are now between hard covers is a very welcome development...They consistute a real advance in historical understanding.' The Slavonic and East European Review, Vol. 78, No. 4