The dinar (/dɪˈnɑːr/) is the principal currency unit in several countries near the Mediterranean Sea, and its historical use is even more widespread.

Nations in dark green currently use the dinar. Nations in light green previously used the dinar. Yugoslav states appear in the inset to the lower left.

The modern dinar's historical antecedents are the gold dinar, the main coin of the medieval Islamic empires, first issued in AH 77 (696–697 CE) by Caliph Abd al-Malik ibn Marwan. The word "dinar" derives from the Latin "dēnārius," a silver coin of ancient Rome, which was first minted about c.211 BCE.

Silver dinar from the reign of Serbian king Stefan Uroš I (1243–1255).

The English word "dinar" is the transliteration of the Arabic دينار (dīnār), which was borrowed via the Syriac dīnarā, itself from the Latin dēnārius.[1][2]

The Kushan Empire introduced a gold coin known as the dīnāra into India in the 1st century AD; the Gupta Empire and its successors up to the 6th century adopted the coin.[3][4] The modern gold dinar is a projected bullion gold coin, as of 2019 not issued as official currency by any state.

Legal tenderEdit

Countries currently using a currency called "dinar" or similarEdit

Umayyad Caliphate golden dinar.
Countries Currency ISO 4217 code
  Algeria Algerian dinar DZD
  Bahrain Bahraini dinar BHD
  Iraq Iraqi dinar IQD
  Jordan Jordanian dinar JOD
  Kuwait Kuwaiti dinar KWD
  Libya Libyan dinar LYD
  North Macedonia North Macedonian denar MKN (1992–1993)
MKD (1993−present)
  Serbia Serbian dinar RSD
CSD (2003–2006)
  Tunisia Tunisian dinar TND

Countries and regions which have previously used a currency called "dinar" in the 20th centuryEdit

A mancus or gold dinar of the English king Offa of Mercia (757–796), a copy of the dinars of the Abbasid Caliphate (774). It combines the Latin legend OFFA REX with Arabic legends. (British Museum)
Countries Currency ISO 4217 code Used Replaced by
  Abu Dhabi Bahraini dinar BHD 1966–1973 United Arab Emirates Dirham
  Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina Bosnia and Herzegovina dinar BAD 1992–1998 Bosnia and Herzegovina convertible mark
  Croatia Croatian dinar HRD 1991–1994 Croatian kuna
  Iran Iranian rial was divided into at first 1250 and then 100 dinars
  South Yemen South Yemeni dinar YDD 1965–1990 Yemeni rial
  Sudan Sudanese dinar SDD 1992–2007 Sudanese pound
  Kingdom of Yugoslavia
  SFR Yugoslavia
  FR Yugoslavia
Yugoslav dinar YUD (1965–1989)
YUN (1990–1992)
YUR (1992–1993)
YUO (1993)
YUG (1994)
YUM (1994–2003)
1918–2003 n/a

The 8th century English king Offa of Mercia minted copies of Abbasid dinars struck in 774 by Caliph Al-Mansur with "Offa Rex" centered on the reverse.[5][6] The moneyer visibly had no understanding of Arabic as the Arabic text contains many errors. Such coins may have been produced for trade with Islamic Spain.

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Oxford English Dictionary, Second edition, 1989, s.v. "dinar"; online version November 2010
  2. ^ Versteegh, C. H. M.; Versteegh, Kees (2001). The Arabic Language. Edinburgh University Press. p. 60. ISBN 978-0-7486-1436-3.
  3. ^ Friedberg, Arthur L.; Friedberg, Ira S. (2009). Gold Coins of the World: From Ancient Times to the Present. Coin & Currency Institute. p. 457. ISBN 978-0-87184-308-1.
  4. ^ Mookerji, Radhakumud (2007). The Gupta Empire. Motilal Banarsidass. pp. 30–31. ISBN 978-81-208-0440-1.
  5. ^ "Coin | British Museum".
  6. ^ Medieval European Coinage by Philip Grierson, p. 330.

External linksEdit