This article offers a translation and discussion of a chapter of a relatively little known late third/ninth- or early fourth/tenth-century text that contains a transcription of the inscriptions that could be seen around the Prophet’s Mosque in Medina after the renovation work undertaken there on the orders of the third Abbasid caliph, Muḥammad al-Mahdī. This text thus adds significantly to our corpus of known inscriptions from early Abbasid imperial monuments. The article discusses the sources of information about these inscriptions in the Prophet’s Mosque, the fate of the Umayyad-era inscriptions in the early Abbasid period, and what the new Abbasid-era inscriptions have to tell us about the Abbasids’ claims to authority in the decades immediately following their seizure of power.
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