The Numismatic Bibliomania Society



The E-Sylum: Volume 23, Number 8, February 23, 2020, Article 23


Numismatourist Howard Berlin submitted this report in his recent visit to the Dubai Coins Museum. Thanks! -Editor

As Wayne mentioned in last week's E-Sylum, I was in Dubai and a funny thing happened to me on the way to the museum. I got left off in front of the Dubai Museum, commemorating the first fort in Dubai from the 18th century. When I inquired how to get to the Coins Museum in the Fahidi Fort area from there, one individual spoke up, dressed in the traditional white ghutra or keffiyeh headdress with black igal headband and the long thawb – an ankle-length tunic. He indicated that he would be glad to walk me to the museum. It was not just around the corner and my knees and lower back were starting to ache. This fellow then offered to bring his car around to drive me to the museum. I at first declined but only relented after he assured me that it was "no problem." In about a few minutes, he arrived with his car and then proceeded to drive me to the museum. After I introduced myself and handed him my card and told him about my book about coin museums, he surprised me by telling me that he was the manager of the Dubai Museum! Talk about hospitality!

The Dubai Coins Museum is situated in a labyrinth maze of shops and a few other museums in the city's Al Fahidi Historical Neighborhood near the Ruler's Divan in Bur Dubai. It was opened in 2004. The museum has numismatic exhibits that belong to different historical eras. The museum is equipped with display cabinets and magnifying screens for each coin as well as computer touch screens with electronic drop-down lists containing detailed information on each coin, in regards to its shape, size, metal, method and date of minting, words written on it, and the images and shapes it contains.

The museum contains more than 470 specimens dating back to different historical eras. The museum includes eight main display rooms as follows:

1. Information about the history of coins.

2. 16 coins of Arab-Sasanian dirhams of the Rashidun and Umayyad Caliphates.

3. 64 dinars and dirhams of the Umayyad Caliphate.

4. 115 dinars and dirhams of the Abbasid Caliphate.

5. 45 coins minted in Egypt, the Levant and Turkey.

6. 91 coins minted in Iraq and the Islamic Orient region.

7. 22 coins minted in North Africa and Andalusia.

8. 102 coins minted in the Arabian Peninsula and the United Arab Emirates.

It also increases knowledge of the coins that had been used in Dubai and the region, in addition to getting acquainted with the close link between the monetary systems of the British Empire, India and the countries in the region before independence, and the formation of the federation. As one whose primary numismatic interest is of the coins and banknotes of the British Mandatory of Palestine, I was pleasantly surprised to see an enlarged replica of a 10-mil coin included.

Text material is given in both Arabic and English. The museum is open from 8:30 am to 3:30 pm, Sunday to Thursday (closed Friday and Saturday), and admission is free.

Dubai Coins Museum 1

1. A view of the front entrance to the Dubai Coins Museum.

Dubai Coins Museum 2 courtyard

2. The museum's courtyard which has entrances to eight exhibits rooms that belong to different historical eras.

Dubai Coins Museum 3 theme

3. The theme of each exhibit is identified by a round emblem by the entrance door.

Dubai Coins Museum 4

4. A view of one of the exhibit rooms showing displays of coins which can be individually rotated to see both the obverse and reverse sides.

Dubai Coins Museum 5

5. Another exhibit room showing a touch screen that can display detailed information about each coin. The enlarged coin replicas on the wall are actually carved from wood.

Dubai Coins Museum 6

6. My favorite: an enlarged wooden replica of the reverse of the 10-mil coin of the British Mandate of Palestine

To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see:
NOTES FROM E-SYLUM READERS: FEBRUARY 16, 2020 : The Numismatourist in Dubai (

Garrett Mid-American E-Sylum ad03d books

Wayne Homren, Editor

NBS ( Web

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