“Of Letters & Coins” 
Aluminium. Various formats.
“In this installation, Hussein Alazaat takes us on a journey into Jordan’s history, depicting the various scripts of Jordan on oversized coins (real and imaginary). 
Jordan is one of the world’s oldest crossroads, harboring powerful kingdoms and trading centers, as attested to by the diversity of scripts on coins and inscriptions found within its present borders. The writings attest to the trading routes of Jordan’s past and present civilizations. The scripts range from petroglyphs, to Safaitic, Aramaic, Nabataean, Greek, Latin, and Arabic. They display a wealth of lettering styles from iconic sites and significant periods.”
Jordan Script Routes Exhibition
Curated by Dr. Huda Smitshuijzen AbiFarès
1_Petroglyphs Ca. 10 000 bc. Origin: Wadi Rum, Jordan. Front: Rock inscription: man with camels. 800 bc. Back: Rock inscription: undeciphered symbol. 800 bc.
2_Moabite (Phoenician script) 
13th – 4th century bc. Origin: Kerak, Jordan. Front: Detail from the Mesha stele. 840 bc. Back: Bronze stamp seal of king Kemosh (Chemosh). 
7th century bc.
3_Safaitic (Ancient North Arabian script) 
1st century bc – 4th century ad. Origin: Nomads of the basalt desert, Mafraq, Jordan. Front: Safaitic stone inscription stating : “by ‘qrbn 
son of Ks’t son of S’d the beautiful woman played the 
reed pipes.” 100 bc. Back: Drawing of a musical ritual. 100 bc.
4_Nabataean (Nabataean script) 
4th century bc – 1st century ad. Origin: Petra, Wadi Rum, Umm el-Jimal, Jordan. Front: Nabataean coin of king Aretas IV. 40 ad. Back: Detail from a stone inscription (the word 
malik shows the transition to the early Arabic 
script). Umm el-Jimal, Jordan. 265 ad.
5_Byzantine (Greek script)
4th –7th  century ad.
In use across Jordan. Front: Arab-Byzantine coin. Ca. 680 ad. Back: Detail from a mosaic inscription from Madaba, 
Jordan. 5th century ad.
6_Umayyad (Arabic script)
661–750 ad. In use across Jordan. Front: Amman-minted Umayyad fils with 
early Kufi script. 8th century ad. Back: Umayyad Dirham. 707 ad.
7_Mamluk (Arabic script) 1250–1517 ad. In use across Jordan. Front: Mamluk Coin. 1346 ad. Back: Detail from an architectural inscription 
from Aqaba, Jordan. 1500 ad.
8_Ottoman (Arabic script) 1516–1918 ad.
In use across Jordan. Front: Ottoman coin with the Sultan’s Tughra. 18th century ad. Back: Detail of a stone-engraved sign for the 
Qatraneh, the Hijaz railway station. 1909 ad.
9_Modern Jordan (Arabic script)
1920s –. Currently in use across Jordan. Front: The first 100 Fils coin of The Hashemite Kingdom 
of Jordan. 1962 ad.  Back: Yarmouk Hotel sign in Ruqaa script, Amman. 1980s.

Conceptual video about the project's behind the scene.

Panel discussion with Dr. Huda Smitshuijzen AbiFarès (Khatt Foundation), Dr. Omar Al-Ghul (Yarmouk University), Dr. Ali Al-Manaser (Ministry of Tourism & Antiquities), and Hussein Alazaat (ELHARF).

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