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Written in Stone
Written In Stone: Pre-Islamic Period Inscriptions
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This large pre-Islamic inscription is depicted on a rock near a well in southern Arabia and consists of ten lines. It is popularly known as "the inscription of Abraha." The inscription is still in its original location; a replica is on display in the museum.


b kh ya l / r h m n n / w m s ya h ha /
m l k n / a b r ha / z ya b m n / m l k / s b a / w z r ya d n / w h dh r m d t

B'khail / ar-rahman / wmaseeha /
malikan / Abraha / Zaybm / malik /
sab'a / w zarydan / w hadarmaut

With the power (help) of god, and the Jesus (=Christian) King Abraha Zeebman (King's title), the King of Saba'a, Zuridan and Hadrmaut.

fig04 color
fig04 b&w fig04 drawing
"The Inscription of Abraha"
(battle memorial, southern Saudi Arabia)
Click for larger images


w ya m n t / w r a a'in r b ha m r / ta w d m /
w t ha m t / s ta r w / z n / s ta r n / k gh z ya w

w yement / wa r'a rab hamw / Twadam / w thamat / satro / zn / satran / K'ghazow

and Yemen and the tribes (on)
the mountains and the coast wrote these lines on his battle

m a'in d m / gh z w t n / r b a'in t n /
b w r kh n / z th b t n / k f s d w / k l / b n ya a'in m r m

Ma'ndam / Ghazwatn / rab'atan / b'warkhan / Zthbatan /Kafa saadu / kl/ bani amrm

against the tribe of Ma'ad ( in ) the battle of al-Rabiya in the
month of "Dhu al Thabithan" (April) and fight (against) all the (tribes) of Bani A'amir.

w z k ya / m l k n / a b j b r / b a'in m /
k d t / w a'in l / w b sh r m / b n h sa n m / b a'in / m

Wazaki/ malikn/ abjabar / b ainam/ kadat/ wain/ w basharm / bin hasahanm/ bainm

and appointed the King (the leader) "Abi Jabar" with (tribe)
Kinda and (Qahtani tribe) Al (and the leader) "Bishar bin Hasan" with

s a'in d m / w m r d m / w h dh r w /
q d m ya / j ya sh n / a'in l ya b n ya a'in m r m /
k d t / w a'in l / b w d / z m r kh / w m r d m / w s d m / b w d.

San dam/ wa mardam / wa hadaru/ qadami / jayshan/
alia bani yamram/ kadat/ wail/ b wad /samrakh / wa mardam/ wa sadam/ b wad..

(Tribe) Sa'ad ( and the tribe) Murad and ( the tribe)
Hadarmaut (stand) in front of the army against Bani Amir of Kinda.
and (the tribe) Al in wadi "zu markh" and Murad and Sa'ad in wadi

b m n ha j / t r b n / w z b h w / w a s r w /
w gh n m w / z a'in s m / w m kh dh / m l k n / b h l b n / w d n w.

B manhaj / tarban/ w zabahow / wa sarw /
w ghanamw / zaisam / wa makhdah/ malakin/ b halban/ wa danw

Manha on the way to Turban and killed and captured
and took the booty in large quantities and the
King and fought at Halban and reached

k za l / m a'in d m / w r ha n w / w b a'in d n ha w /
w s a'in ha m w / a'in m r m / b n / m z r n..

Ka zalam/ maidam / wrahanw / wa badanahaw /
nwa sa'aham mw / amram / bin/ mazran.

Ma'ad and took booty and prisoners, and after that, conquered
(from the tribe of Ma'ad) Omro bin al-Munzir …

w r ha n m w / b n ha w / w s t kh l fa ha w /
a'in l ya / m a'in d m / w q f l w / b n / h l

Wa rahanamw / bin haw / wa sata khalafw / ala/ ma'dam/ wa qafalw/ bin/ hal.

(and according to the agreement between Abrha and the tribe of Ma'ad)
(Abrhas) appointed the son (of Omro) as the ruler and returned (Abraha) from Hal.

(b) n / (b) kh ya l / r h m n n / w r kh ha w /
z a'in l n / z l th n ya / w s th ya / w s

( bi)n / (b) akhayal / rahman / wa rakhaw / zalan / salthany / w sathya/ ws

Ban (halban) with the power of the god in the month of Zu A'allan in the year sixty-two

th / m a t m

Tha / matam

and six hundred

Pre-Islamic Exhibit: Origin & Develpment | Thamudic | Lihyanite | Safaitic | Musnad al Janubi
Islamic Exhibit: Islamic Period | Kufi 1 | Kufi 2 | Naskh
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