Dirham, dirhem or dirhm (درهم) was and, in some cases, still is a unit of currency in several Arab states. It was formerly the related unit of mass (the Ottoman dram) in the Ottoman Empire and old Persian states. The name derives from the name of the ancient Greek currency, drachma.[1]

Arab-Sasanian Dirham in the name of al-Hajjaj ibn Yusuf
One of the first silver coins of the Umayyad Caliphate, still following Sassanid motifs, struck in the name of al-Hajjaj ibn Yusuf
Silver Dirham
Later silver dirham of the Umayyad Caliphate, minted at Balkh in AH 111 (= 729/30 CE)

Unit of mass

The dirham was a unit of weight used across North Africa, the Middle East, and Persia, with varying values.

In the late Ottoman Empire (Ottoman Turkish درهم), the standard dirham was 3.207 g;[2] 400 dirhem equal one oka. The Ottoman dirham was based on the Sassanian drachm, which was itself based on the Roman dram/drachm.

In Egypt in 1895, it was equivalent to 47.661 troy grains (3.088 g).[3]

There is currently a movement within the Islamic world to revive the Dirham as a unit of mass for measuring silver, although the exact value is disputed (either 3 grams or 2.975 grams).


Silver hoard from Lublin-Czechów
Silver hoard from Lublin-Czechów, comprising 214 silver dirhams issued between 711/712 and 882/883 AD, Lublin Museum.

The word "dirham" comes from drachma (δραχμή), the Greek coin.[1] The Greek-speaking Byzantine Empire controlled the Levant and traded with Arabia, circulating the coin there in pre-Islamic times and afterward. It was this currency which was initially adopted as an Arab word; then near the end of the 7th century the coin became an Islamic currency bearing the name of the sovereign and a religious verse. The dirham was struck in many Mediterranean countries, including Al-Andalus (Moorish Spain) and the Byzantine Empire (miliaresion), and could be used as currency in Europe between the 10th and 12th centuries, notably in areas with Viking connections, such as Viking York[4] and Dublin.

Dirham in Jewish orthodox law

The dirham is frequently mentioned in Jewish orthodox law as a unit of weight used to measure various requirements in religious functions, such as the weight in silver specie pledged in Marriage Contracts (Ketubbah), the quantity of flour requiring the separation of the dough-portion, etc. Jewish physician and philosopher, Maimonides, uses the Egyptian dirham to approximate the quantity of flour for dough-portion, writing in Mishnah Eduyot 1:2: "...And I found the rate of the dough-portion in that measurement to be approximately five-hundred and twenty dirhams of wheat flour, while all these dirhams are the Egyptian [dirham]." This view is repeated by Maran's Shulhan Arukh (Hil. Hallah, Yoreh Deah § 324:3) in the name of the Tur. In Maimonides' commentary of the Mishnah (Eduyot 1:2, note 18), Rabbi Yosef Qafih explains that the weight of each Egyptian dirham was approximately 3.333 grammes,[5] or what was the equivalent to 16 carob-grains[6] which, when taken together, the minimum weight of flour requiring the separation of the dough-portion comes to approx. 1 kilo and 733 grammes. Rabbi Ovadiah Yosef, in his Sefer Halikhot ʿOlam (vol. 1, pp. 288-291),[7] makes use of a different standard for the Egyptian dirham, saying that it weighed approx. 3.0 grammes, meaning the minimum requirement for separating the priest's portion is 1 kilo and 560 grammes. Others (e.g. Rabbi Avraham Chaim Naeh) say the Egyptian dirham weighed approx. 3.205 grammes,[8] which total weight for the requirement of separating the dough-portion comes to 1 kilo and 666 grammes. Rabbi Shelomo Qorah (Chief Rabbi of Bnei Barak) writes that the traditional weight used in Yemen for each dirham weighed 3.36 grammes,[9] making the total weight for the required separation of the dough-portion to be 1 kilo and 770.72 grammes.

The word drachmon (Hebrew: דרכמון‬), used in some translations of Maimonides' commentary of the Mishnah, has in all places the same connotation as dirham.[10]

Modern-day currency

Currently the valid national currencies with the name dirham are :

Modern currencies with the subdivision dirham or diram are:

Also the unofficial modern gold dinar is divided into dirham.

See also


  1. ^ a b Oxford English Dictionary, 1st edition, s.v. 'dirhem'
  2. ^ based on an oka of 1.2828 kg; Diran Kélékian gives 3.21 g (Dictionnaire Turc-Français, Constantinople: Imprimerie Mihran, 1911) ; Γ. Μπαμπινιώτης gives 3.203 g (Λεξικό της Νέας Ελληνικής Γλώσσας, Athens, 1998)
  3. ^ OED
  4. ^ In addition to Islamic dirhams in ninth and tenth century English hoards, a counterfeit dirham was found at Coppergate, York, struck as if for Isma'il ibn Achmad (ruling at Samarkand, 903-07/8), of copper covered by a once-silvery wash of tin (illustrated in Richard Hall, Viking Age Archaeology, [series Shire Archaeology] 2010:17, fig. 7).
  5. ^ Mishnah - with a Commentary of Rabbi Moses ben Maimon, ed. Yosef Qafih, vol. 2 - Seder Neziqim, pub. Mossad Harav Kook: Jerusalem 1965, p. 189 (Hebrew title: משנה עם פירוש הרמב"ם)
  6. ^ Mishnah - with a Commentary of Rabbi Moses ben Maimon (ed. Yosef Qafih), vol. 3, Mossad Harav Kook: Jerusalem 1967, s.v. Introduction to Tractate Menahoth, p. 68 (note 35) (Hebrew)
  7. ^ Ovadiah Yosef, Sefer Halikhot ʿOlam, vol. 1, Jerusalem 2002 (Hebrew title: ספר הליכות עולם)
  8. ^ Ovadiah Yosef, Sefer Halikhot ʿOlam, vol. 1, Jerusalem 2002, p. 288, sec. 11; Abraham Chaim Naeh, Sefer Kuntres ha-Shi'urim, Jerusalem 1943, p. 4 (Hebrew)
  9. ^ Shelomo Qorah, ʿArikhat Shūlḥan - Yilqūṭ Ḥayyīm, vol. 13 (Principles of Instruction and Tradition), Benei Barak 2012, p. 206 (Hebrew title: עריכת שולחן - ילקוט חיים)
  10. ^ Mishnah - with a Commentary of Rabbi Moses ben Maimon, ed. Yosef Qafih, vol. 3 - Seder Kodashim, pub. Mossad Harav Kook: Jerusalem 1967, s.v. Introduction to Tractate Menahoth, p. 68 (note 35) (Hebrew title: משנה עם פירוש הרמב"ם)
Abra (boat)

An abra (Arabic: عبرة‎ abra) is a traditional boat made of wood.

Abras are used to ferry people across the Dubai Creek in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. They travel between the water station at Shindagha/Al Ghubaiba on the Bur Dubai side, and the water station at Al Sabkha on the Deira side. The abras depart every few minutes. The fare is 1 dirham, which is paid to the ferry driver.


Abū Muḥammad 'Abd al-Jabbār al-Kharaqī, also Al-Kharaqī was a Persian astronomer and mathematician of the 12th century, born in Kharaq near Merv. He was in the service of Sultan Sanjar at the Persian Court. Al-Kharaqī challenged the astronomical theory of Ptolemy in the Almagest, and established an alternative theory of the spheres, imagining huge material spheres in which the planets moved inside tubes.During his travels to the Ottoman Empire in 1536, Guillaume Postel acquired an astronomical work by al-Kharaqī, Muntahā al-idrāk fī taqāsīm al-aflāk ("The Ultimate Grassp of the Divisions of Spheres"), annotated it, and brought it back to Europe.Al-Kharaqī also wrote mathematical treatises, now lost, Al-Risala al-Shāmila ("Comprehensive Treatise") and Al-Risala al-Maghribiyya ("The North African Treatise", related to the calculus of dirham and dinar).

David Abudirham

David Abudarham (fl. 1340) (Hebrew: דוד אבודרהם‎) or Abudarham was a rishon who lived at Seville and was known for his commentary on the Synagogue liturgy. He is said to have been a student of Jacob ben Asher. This view originates in Chaim Yosef David Azulai's Shem Gedolim. Abudarham gives full citations of authority up to and including Jacob ben Asher; (son of Asher ben Yechiel). He also mentions that he lived at Asher ben Jehiel's house, and was a "friend" of Jacob ben Asher. The rabbi is believed to be the ancestor of Solomon Abudarham (d. 1804), Chief Rabbi of Gibraltar.

Dubai World Trade Centre

The Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC), (Arabic: مركز دبي التجاري العالمي‎) is a skyscraper in Dubai, UAE which was erected in 1979. It is a purpose-built complex for events and exhibitions. The building is featured on the 100 dirham bank note.

With over 1.3 million square feet of covered exhibition and event space, comprising 21 halls and over 40 meeting rooms across 3 floors, Dubai World Trade Centre hosts over 500 events annually. In 2015, the venue held 396 trade events and welcomed over 2.74 million visitors.


The e-Dirham is a payment tool introduced by the government of the United Arab Emirates with the aim of facilitating the collection of revenues of governmental and non-governmental service fees in a safe and secure way.

The e-Dirham was initially intended for use by the UAE federal government, but it was later used by the local governments of the constituent Emirates, as well as by semi-governmental organizations and private enterprises.

The e-Dirham was launched on 3 February 2001, making UAE the first country within the Arab Region to introduce such a system countrywide.

The e-Dirham has become widely available, and has many payment channels. The Ministry of Finance and Industry has worked and is still working on expanding payment channels. Currently available payment channels include

Electronic point of sale (EPOS) terminals

Over the Internet (E-Dirham Payment Gateway)


Fereej Bin Durham

Fereej Bin Durham (Arabic: فريج بن درهم‎; also spelled as Fereej bin Derhem) is a district in Qatar, located in the municipality of Ad Dawhah. Together with Al Mansoura, it makes up zone no. 25 which has a total population of 37,082.The district is in close proximity to Doha's business center and logistics focal points on the east coast, such as Hamad International Airport and Grand Hamad Street, making it a popular choice for commercial operators to set up in. It is also relatively close to some of Doha's major population centers such as Mushayrib. Bin Dirham Plaza, developed by Just Real Estate, is one such major project to capitalize on Fereej Bin Durham's location, having launched as a major 7-storey office project in 2017.

Gold dinar

The gold dinar (Arabic: ﺩﻳﻨﺎﺭ ذهبي‎) is an Islamic medieval gold coin first issued in AH 77 (696–697 CE) by Caliph Abd al-Malik ibn Marwan. The weight of the dinar is 1 mithqal (4.25 grams).

The word dinar comes from the Latin word denarius, which was a silver coin. The name "dinar" is also used for Sasanid, Kushan, and Kidarite gold coins, though it is not known what the contemporary name was.

The first dinars were issued by the Umayyad Caliphate. Under the dynasties that followed the use of the dinar spread from Islamic Spain to Central Asia.

Jumeirah Beach Residence

Jumeirah Beach Residence (also known as JBR) is a 1.7 kilometres (1.1 mi) long, 2 square kilometres (0.77 sq mi) gross floor area waterfront community located against the Persian Gulf in Dubai Marina in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. It is a residential development and contains 40 towers (35 are residential and 5 are hotels). JBR can accommodate about 15,000 people, living in its apartments and hotel rooms. The Project has 6,917 apartments, from 900 sq ft (84 m2) studios to 5,500 sq ft (510 m2) penthouses. JBR has a total of six residential blocks, Shams, Amwaj, Rimal, Bahar, Sadaf and Murjan (in order from east to west). JBR is within walking distance to Dubai Marina and Dubai Metro.

The developer, Dubai Properties (a subsidiary of Dubai Holding), launched JBR in August 2002. This 6 billion dirham project was completed in 2010.

Kelantanese dinar

The Kelantanese dinar is a currency issued by the Government of the Malaysian state of Kelantan, which purportedly is in conformance with the concept of the Islamic gold dinar. The Kelantanese dinar is available in the form of coins of several denominations. These coins were first struck in 2006 by Mariwasa Kraftangan of Kuala Kangsar, Perak, a local producer of souvenirs and replicas of objects of art and culture, and launched by the state of Kelantan on 20 September 2006. The Government of Kelantan had suggested that the coins had the status of legal tender, and the state-issued dinar sold out quickly, with many buyers seeing the gold dinar as a better choice than fiat money.However, the federal Malaysian government in Kuala Lumpur denied that the Kelantanese dinar had a legal-tender status, stating that the buyers had been misled by the Kelantanese government. The only currency that is legal tender in Kelantan is the Malaysian ringgit. According to the Malaysian constitution, ninth schedule, list I sub 7.a, the states of Malaysia do not have the right to issue coins. In fact, the federal government had already declared publicly in 2006, in response to the plan announced by the Kelantanese government and before any of the coins were minted, that state governments could not issue their own currency.

Libyan dinar

The dinar (Arabic: دينار‎ dīnār) is the currency of Libya. Its ISO 4217 code is "LYD". The dinar is subdivided into 1000 dirham (درهم). It was introduced in September 1971 and replaced the pound at par. It is issued by the Central Bank of Libya, which also supervises the banking system and regulates credit. In 1972, the Libyan Arab Foreign Bank was established to deal with overseas investment.

Ali Mohammed Salem, deputy governor of Central Bank of Libya stated the exchange rate of Libyan dinar would be pegged to special drawing rights for one to three years, according to an interview to Reuters on 27 December 2011.

List of circulating currencies

This list contains the 180 currencies recognized as legal tender in United Nations (UN) member states, UN observer states, partially recognized or unrecognized states, and their dependencies. Dependencies and unrecognized states are listed here only if another currency is used in their territory that is different from the one of the state that administers them or has jurisdiction over them.

Modern gold dinar

The modern Islamic gold dinar (sometimes referred as Islamic dinar or Gold dinar) is a projected bullion gold coin, so far not issued as official currency by any national state. It aims to revive the historical gold dinar which was a leading coin of early Islam. The currency might consist of minted gold coins, dinars, silver coins, or dirhams.

Moroccan dirham

The dirham (Arabic: درهم‎ dirham, Berber languages: ⴰⴷⵔⵉⵎ adrim, French: dirham, Spanish: dírha; sign: DH; code: MAD) is the currency of Morocco. It is issued by the Bank Al-Maghrib, the central bank of Morocco. It is subdivided into 100 centimes (Arabic: سنتيمات santimat, singular: سنتيم santim).

Moroccan rial

The rial was the currency of Morocco between 1882 and 1921. It was subdivided into 10 dirham, each of 50 mazunas.


In Sharia (Islamic Law) niṣāb (نِصاب) is the minimum amount that a Muslim must have before being obliged to zakat. Several hadith have formulas for calculating niṣāb, the most prominent of which declares that No Zakāt is due on wealth until one year passes. Zakat is determined based on the amount of wealth acquired; the greater one's assets, the greater the tax. Unlike income tax in secular states niṣāb is not subject to special exemptions.

In Islam, niṣāb is 20 dinārs for gold and 200 dirhams for silver based on the original 1 to 10 exchange rate. The dinār is a gold coin weighing one mithqal (4.25 grams) and the dirḥam is a silver coin weighing 0.7 mithqal (2.975 grams). The niṣāb is applicable to the cumulative stock of dinārs, dirḥam and any other zakatable valuables, such as merchandise that has been in store for at least one year. As long as the total value of the zakatable valuables exceeds the value of the niṣāb, zakat must be paid.


See also Rail transport in MoroccoONCF (from French: Office National des Chemins de Fer; Arabic: المكتب الوطني للسكك الحديدية‎ Al-Maktab al-Waṭaniy lil-Sikak al-Ḥadīdiyyah; Moroccan National Railways Office) is Morocco's national railway operator. ONCF is a state-owned company that is under the control of the Ministry of Equipment, Transport and Logistics and is responsible for all passenger and freight traffic on the national railway network. The company is also responsible for building and maintaining the rail infrastructure. The ONCF employs around 7,845 employees and has a network of 3,600 km, all 1,435 mm (4 ft 8 1⁄2 in) standard gauge of which 1,300 km is electrified (2015). The general director of ONCF is Mohamed Rabie Khlie.

Sahrawi peseta

The Sahrawi peseta (Arabic: البيزيتا الصحراوي‎, Spanish: Peseta Saharaui) is the currency of the partially recognized Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic. It is divided in 100 céntimos, although coins with this denomination have never been minted, nor have banknotes been printed. The official international currency code is EHP.The first Sahrawi pesetas were minted in 1990, but they were not adopted as the national coin of Western Sahara until 1997. As this territory is mostly controlled by Morocco, the circulating currency in that part of the country is the Moroccan dirham, with Algerian dinars and Mauritanian ouguiyas circulating alongside the Sahrawi peseta in the Sahrawi refugee camps and the SADR-controlled part of Western Sahara.

As it is not an official currency and not circulating, the exchange rate is not really realistic. Despite this, the Sahrawi peseta was pegged at par to the Spanish peseta and, when the latter was phased out for the euro, the rate became €1 for 166.386 Pts.

United Arab Emirates dirham

The United Arab Emirates dirham (Arabic: درهم‎, sign: د.إ; code: AED), also known as simply the Emirati dirham, is the currency of the United Arab Emirates. The term dirham is officially abbreviated "AED", while unofficial abbreviations include "DH" or "Dhs.". The dirham is subdivided into 100 fils (فلس).

Water supply and sanitation in Morocco

Water supply and sanitation in Morocco is provided by a wide array of utilities. They range from private companies in the largest city, Casablanca, the capital, Rabat, and two other cities, to public municipal utilities in 13 other cities, as well as a national electricity and water company (ONEE). The latter is in charge of bulk water supply to the aforementioned utilities, water distribution in about 500 small towns, as well as sewerage and wastewater treatment in 60 of these towns.

There have been substantial improvements in access to water supply, and to a lesser extent to sanitation, over the past fifteen years. Remaining challenges include a low level of wastewater treatment (only 13% of collected wastewater is being treated), lack of house connections in the poorest urban neighborhoods, and limited sustainability of rural systems (20 percent of rural systems are estimated not to function). In 2005 a National Sanitation Program was approved that aims at treating 60% of collected wastewater and connecting 80% of urban households to sewers by 2020. The issue of lack of water connections for some of the urban poor is being addressed as part of the National Human Development Initiative, under which residents of informal settlements have received land titles and have fees waived that are normally paid to utilities in order to connect to the water and sewer network.

This page is based on a Wikipedia article written by authors (here).
Text is available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 license; additional terms may apply.
Images, videos and audio are available under their respective licenses.